Tip 2. A little bit of craft might do you good - Hand-make a simple card for the next birthday or event on your calendar.

This is a shocking exercise.

You'll need a pen and paper. Write down the number of your immediate family members. Multiply it by 2 (representing their birthday and Christmas). Add at least another 12 (representing one a month for birth, death, anniversary, driving test etc). Multiply it by £2.50 (average cost of card and postage). What's the figure?

Now, do bear in mind you've not allowed for a single friend, or chums of your children, or neighbours, the list goes on and on. You can save a fortune by making your own greetings cards and create far more of an impact with the recipient, because you have taken the time to create something personal. Made in batches, you can do a dozen at a time quite easily and they are also a great way to get the family around the table for a giggle at your 'Blue Peter' efforts!

If you would like to make your own cards but are short of ideas have a look at the following website: www.bisous.biz/main.htm

Why not start by making your first card as an invitation to a Bring and Share Dinner Party on Friday of this week. Enjoy!