8 Simple Budget Hacks for Grocery Shopping

Grocery shopping is staple activity in day-to-day living. Because of this, it only makes sense to become a savvy shopper and learn how to save money on groceries.

Jumping into college can be seen as one of the first steps towards adulting.

As part of being in the world of adults and finding your feet in the real world there comes a whole host of new responsibilities.

One such responsibility is grocery shopping.

Because grocery shopping forms such an integral part of one’s university experience, and student budgets are as tight as they are it helps to be able to shop smart.

And that is exactly what this blog post is for, to provide some simple shopping hacks to save you money at the grocery store

1. don’t go hungry

You might be thinking that the reason behind a person grocery shopping is to be able to get food in the first place.

By this same logic then it would imply that there is no food at home to eat beforehand.

That’s where the strategic timing of going to the shops before your pantry is completely depleted comes in.

But alas, why do I recommend shopping on a satisfied belly?

Have you ever happened to notice the grocery stores’ enticing placement of all those sweet treats?

Waiting in line to check out your grocery items can be a dangerous place to be if you have a larger than average appetite and are ‘forced’ to stand in and amongst all those decadent indulgences.

Related: Are You Looking for Some Tasty Treats?

Related: 8 Easy Vegan Recipes to Try For Yourself

woman holding a giant cupcake and looking like she has eaten too much

2. grocery list

This has got to be one of the most underrated shopping hacks when it comes to groceries.

Have you ever been out to the store to grab a few items and then return home with some sneaky packages that you had no intention of buying in the first place?

If you put together a shopping list beforehand not only will you save yourself money, but you will save yourself time.

Related: Simple Time Management Strategies for Students


3. collective of stores

So the fact is that its highly unlikely for any one store to offer competitive pricing across all of its products.

If you manage to do some shopping around across different stores then you can put together the combination of goods from different stores that give you the best bang for your buck.

Related: The Student Money-Making Mindset

option a b and c

4. read the fine print

Right so you’re at the store wanting to buy yourself a block of cheese.

You have the choice between a 250g block or a 450g block.

The 250g is marked at R36, whilst the 450g is marked at R55.

The obvious choice is to go for the 250g block, right?


On paper, the 250g block is without a doubt cheaper.

Yet when you look at it on a rand per kilogram basis you’ll find the 250g block to be R144/kg versus that of the R122/kg for the 450g block of cheese.

Of course, this assumes one has the financial means to afford the bigger block, but if you do it’s a worthwhile investment for the long-term.

Though this strategy is not always the wisest.

It is all dependent upon your unique needs.

It would be pointless for a person who consumes on 250g of cheese a month to purchase the 450g.

Money would be wasted on cheese that inevitably expires.

read the fine print ahead is written on a road sign

5. the closing sale

Especially when it comes to freshly baked goods, a store will often mark down the unsold products in an attempt to clear their stock.

This is not a way of the store trying to get rid of substandard items, rather a means for them to mitigate their losses.

When it comes time for the store to shut its doors all those unsold goods are going to be ‘thrown out’ either to charity or unfortunately the rubbish bin.

The point is that they won’t generate any revenue from it.


6. shopping bags

This seemingly innocent expense at the checkout counter slips past the guard of many.

The price tag attached to these items is so insignificant that it rarely ever gets mentioned, but every little thing adds up.

If you’ve got bags lying around from your previous shopping spree then you’d be wise to use them for the next grocery store visit.

collection of different coloured shopping bags

7. tracking expenses

There is a saying that goes along the lines of ”what gets measured is improved” and that saying has never been more true than when it comes to personal finance.

Whether in the form of a budgeting app, spreadsheet, or bank statement, analyzing your spending habits can be the single greatest activity towards achieving greater financial literacy.

Chances are that you will quickly identify a few areas where you can draw back some money to be of better use elsewhere.

a work desk with a keyboard, coffee mug, glasses, notepad and pens

8. secret stash

It can happen where we find ourselves in a sticky situation at times where there is a whole lot of month to get through and not an awful lot of bank.

Be it in a dedicated savings account or even simply just a stack of notes in your safe or under your pillow.

Having an emergency fund of sorts, particularly for basic needs, will provide you with a great deal of relief when the budget becomes increasingly strained.

The key with this secret stash is to only use it when it is necessary.

And for when you do use it, it must be topped-up once again. After all, it isn’t a bottomless source.

bank notes stashed beneath floorboards


I hope you were able to find a tip or two to help you out on your next outing to the grocery store.

I am by no means a financial guru or anything along those lines, but I am passionate about personal finance and am always looking for better ways to use my finances.


Which of these tips have you already been implementing in your day-to-day grocery shopping?

Mistakes To Avoid for Undergrads Starting College

Are you about to start university? It can be daunting to jump into college without knowing much about what to expect. Here are 13 MISTAKES to AVOID for all freshers.

For yours truly, 2020 has been an unbelievably dynamic year so far.

Among other things, this year marked the commencement of my university experience as a first-year student.

University brings along with it a huge amount of lessons to be learned and I have certainly had a steep learning curve, as I am sure all the other freshers have had themselves.

The beauty of student life is that it is the first stage in life where it becomes obvious to a person of everyone carving their individual paths.

With this in mind, some of you guys might think this list absurdly obvious whilst for others it will be enlightening.


I am sure you know that varsity is nothing like high school.

It is an entirely setup and vibe.

This means that you will need to look at recreating your routine.

Related: 15 Major Differences Between High School and College


2. books books books

No doubt you have definitely heard about the immense workload that university throws at students.

You are going to be buried by assignments, prescribed readings, and just general activities to complete.

It’s a lot to have to stay on top of.

This means that it’s easy for stuff to disappear and so you may be better off keeping all your notes central, be it in a file or online.

stack of books against a strong yellow background

3. staying up to date

Don’t get me wrong here, keeping up with the latest material is how a person ought to be studying.

The reality though is that there will come a time when you fall behind ever so slightly.

When this happens, don’t panic you will get back up to speed.

The problem with keeping up to date with all the work is when it begins to evolve into a source of anxiety and self-induced pressure.

And that ties into the next point…

Related: Power-House Productivity Strategies for Students

Related: Simple Time Management Strategies for Students

time to update

4. workaholic

The extreme to always being up to date is working ahead of the curve.

This certainly speaks to a persons work ethic and its by no means a bad thing.

Though too much of one thing is a bad thing. The same is true for being a workaholic.

The danger in being a workaholic who constantly tries to clear assignments as soon as they come in is that the work doesn’t stop.

And if the work doesn’t stop coming in then the workaholic never goes out.

Related: 15 Types of Students

burn out written on wooden blocks

5. overextending yourself

College is an amazing platform to explore a myriad of new hobbies and activities.

With this gateway into the world of experiences though comes the emphasis that must be placed on self-awareness.

You, and only you will be able to assess if you can handle the load you’re taking on.

Be conscious of the responsibilities you’re signing yourself up for.

man sitting at a desk with sticky notes placed all over his desk and face

6. not asking for help

The student community is one of the most supportive communities out there.

As students, we’re all in the same boat. Everyone has either been there, is going through what you’re experiencing, or is asking the same question as you are.

Don’t be afraid to reach out. People will surprise you with how supportive they are.

hikers helping each other climb a mountain

7. being a lone ranger

Tying in directly to the previous point, we have the lone ranger.

It’s amazing to see how quickly one can come to grips with content or concepts through the use of collaboration.

When it comes to studying and working through problems, teamwork does tend to make the dream work – just remember the previous tip above!

paper planes travelling in one direction with one jet diverting from the standard route

8. sitting in the same lecture seats

Probably one of the most exciting parts about university is being able to make a whole bunch of new friends.

There are plenty of new faces on campus to socialize with.

What I have found is that people tend to sit in roughly the same seats for their lectures.

By moving around the lecture halls and sitting in different areas you can meet many more people and build that network of yours.

On the note of moving around…

Related: What are Lectures Like?

purple and red auditorium seating

9. up & down to campus

Ok, I’ll admit that I am definitely guilty of this one.

More often than not, I’d end up heading back to my room in between lectures to relax.

It certainly has its benefits, but it can tend to be tiring.

It’s worthwhile to consider just planting yourself on campus until the end of your lectures and then head home.

man holding a skateboard walking through a plaza

10. ad hoc meals

Days in the life of a student can be long and draining.

When you get home you’re not necessarily going to feel like cooking yourself a meal.

It’s at times like this that eating out or ordering in becomes all the more appealing.

You’ll save yourself a ton of money and, potentially, time in the gym if you meal prep for the few days or even week that lies ahead.

Related: Are You Looking For Some Tasty Treats?

Related: The Student Money-Making Mindset

woman staring at her open fridge

11. no cookbook

Meal prepping requires having some recipes readily available to be made use of.

You’ll want to sharpen those culinary skills of yours as a student.

After all, there are only so many ways one can eat toast…

Related: 8 Easy Vegan Recipes to Try For Yourself

handwritten cookbook

12. grocery shopping during rush-hour

The fantastic aspect of student life is the freedom and flexibility your schedule often provides.

Times is a luxury that students really are able to soak up.

Because of this, I wouldn’t think any student would be thrilled to spend their invaluable time waiting in ques to check out their groceries.

person in motion grocery shopping

13. fashion show

Comfort is key when it comes to student living.

Slap on those sneakers, sweatpants and hoodie and head over to class.

woman fashion items: heels, dress, purse, makeup, necklaces and hat


Hopefully, this little guide will help you to better prepare for your upcoming university journey.


Which tip did you not expect to see on this list?

8 Easy Vegan Recipes to Try For Yourself

Are you needing some inspiration to get yourself into the kitchen? Thanks to The Vegietable we need wait no more. Check out these delicious recipes!

So for those of you that have read some of my earlier posts, you’ll know that I have spoken about food a couple of times.

Related: Are You Looking for Some Tasty Treats? 

Related: 10 Critical Skills a Formal Education Won’t Provide 

The reason why is quite simple in fact: cooking a meal for yourself after a long day of books and lectures can be quite the mountain to climb.

Whilst there are tons of recipes out there on the web to try out, I have never quite managed to strike that balance of an aesthetically palatable dish whilst also keeping quality nutrition in mind.

There has been a huge uptake of the vegan diet of late and there is certainly a large amount of science out there to advocate it’s place in one’s lifestyle.

And now thanks to the culinary wizard, Michaela Kruger, who is the passionate founder of The Vegietable there are some ”easy plant-based recipes” for you to try out.

Whether you are looking for something quick & easy to whip up or wanting to flex your cooking prowess, there is definitely a dish with your name on it below.


Chickpea Omelette

  • 3/4 cup chickpea flour
  • 3/4 cup + 1 Tbsp unsweetened dairy-free milk
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Whisk all the ingredients together to form a pancake-like batter.
  2. Pour a third of the batter into a nonstick or greased pan, on a low heat.
  3. Cook for about 2 min and add your filling.
  4. Fold over and cover with a lid and allow to cook for 5min.

I used spinach, mushrooms, vegan cheese, and tomatoes for my fillings.

Michaela Kruger
Chickpea Omelette
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable

Berry Chia Pot

  • 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 1/2 cup Plant-based milk (or water)
  • Any sweetener (optional – I didn’t use one)
  1. Mix together in a glass or bowl and leave in the fridge overnight to soak OR you can let it sit for at least 20min.

Berry Compote:

  • 1/2 cup Frozen berries
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  1. Place berries in a pot on a medium-high heat, and simmer until
  2. Berries have defrosted. Now add the chia seeds and simmer on a low heat until it has thickened.
  3. Any extra compote can be kept in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks.


  • Banana
  • Granadilla
  • Berry compote
  • Pumpkin seeds

I like to mix in all my toppings with the chia pot, otherwise the

plain chia pot might be too rich.

Michaela kruger
Berry Chia Pots
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable


Sugar Bean Burger Patties

(6 patties)


  • 1 cup sugar beans (tinned or precooked)
  • 2 flax eggs (2 Tbsp ground flaxseed + 6 Tbsp water)
  • 1/4 onion (chopped)
  • 1 clove garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2-3 drops liquid smoke (optional)
  • 1/2 cup oat flour (+ extra for coating)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a bowl mash the beans well, leaving a few chunks for texture.
  2. Mix in all the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Separate and roll into 6 even balls. Gently press down onto some oat flour to coat it.
  4. Fry in a pan on a medium-high heat with a little oil for about 3min on each side.

To plate up I had it with vegan sriracha mayonnaise, gherkins, cucumber, tomato, and avocado. I did not use a bun but you are welcome to. Add any other of your favorite burger toppings and enjoy!

michaela kruger
Sugar bean burger patties
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable

Nourish Bowl – with peanut butter sauce

Peanut butter sauce:

  • 1/2 an onion (chopped)
  • 2 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp soya sauce
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 6 Tbsp coconut milk
  1. Fry the onions for about 5min.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until well incorporated.
  3. Simmer until thickened.


  • Quinoa (pre-cooked)
  • Green pepper (chopped)
  • Broccolini (grilled)
  • Snap peas (sliced)
  • Carrot (grated)
  • Avocado
  • Hemp seeds
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Place as much or as little of each ingredient into your bowl.
  2. Add the peanut butter sauce and enjoy!
Nourish bowl with peanut butter sauce
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable


Basil Pesto Pasta

Basil pesto:

  • 80-100g basil
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tsp pine nuts
  • Generous squeeze lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until mostly smooth.
  2. Cook any pasta of your choice (I used wholewheat fusilli) and add a generous serving of pesto!
basil pesto pasta
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable

Lentil Dhal Curry

  • 1 large onion (roughly chopped)
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 Tbsp masala
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • Salt and black pepper (to taste)
  • 2 cups lentils
  • 1 carrot (finely chopped)
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 800ml water + 2 stock cubes (or 1 tbsp stock powder)
  • 1 can coconut milk
  1. Heat up a large pot. Add some water or oil and place the onions in.
  2. Fry on a high heat for about 5min (stir every now and again to stop from burning).
  3. While the onions are browning, chop the ginger and garlic finely (add some salt while chopping to get a finer texture).
  4. Put the ginger, garlic, masala, cumin, turmeric, salt and pepper in the pot with the onions.
  5. Add a splash of water to stop it from sticking. Stir well together to form a paste.
  6. Cook on a low heat for about 15min. (This is to build flavor, the longer you cook it the more flavor will develop)
  7. Add the lentils and chopped carrot to the pot.
  8. Then add the tomatoes, water and stock.
  9. Stir and then bring to a boil. Add the coconut milk and turn down the heat and allow to simmer for about 1 hour.
  10. (Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t stick – I like to keep the lid on for the first 50min and then take it off to reduce)
  11. Serve on a bed of rice or any other grain.
  12. You may also enjoy it by itself. Add your favorite curry condiments and enjoy!
Lentil Dhal Curry
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable


Roasted Chickpeas

  • 1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Mix all the ingredients
  3. Allow 20 minutes to cook in the oven
Roasted Chickpeas
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable

Peanut Butter Bars


  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 2 Tbsp cacao nibs
  • 2 Tbsp cranberries
  • 2 Tbsp sunflower seeds


  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil melted
  • 1-2 Tbsp cocoa powder
  1. Mix together
  2. Melt the peanut butter with the maple syrup and vanilla essence in a saucepan.
  3. Add oats, cacao nibs, cranberries and sunflower seeds.
  4. Mix until well combined.
  5. Place in a silicon or lined dish, pressing down the bar mixture to about 1cm thick.
  6. Leave in the fridge for about 1 hour to set and then remove and cut into the desired shape.
  7. Drizzle over the chocolate drizzle and eat as a snack or breakfast.
Peanut Butter Bars
Photo courtesy of The Vegietable


Watch this space everyone because this up and coming talent is lining herself up for some pretty exciting things.

If you haven’t already, drop by The Vegietables’ Instagram account!


Which recipe are you going to be giving a shot first?

What Are Lectures Like?

It’s the talk of the town amongst students. Lectures are without doubt in a league of their own. But what is it that makes them so unique?

Gone are the days of sitting in relatively intimate classroom setups.

Transitioning to university is certainly an adjustment.

Arguably the most notable difference between uni and high school is just the sheer mass of people.

So it’s then no surprise to you nor myself that the lecture halls are going to be buzzing when you walk into them.

It’s absolutely crazy to see just how many people can be placed into a space.

It definitely provides perspective on just how minute a high school classroom is.

So let’s take it back to the very start of every class


The clock is ticking. There’s just 10 minutes before your next class starts.

Your heart is racing. Feet pounding and eye’s scanning your surroundings for the quickest route from one side of campus to the other.

Left turn, right turn, another right. No wait go back, it’s a left, not a right.

Down the sidewalk and take a sharp right, then scurry up the stairs and take the first available seat you can find.

Particularly as a fresher this is not an uncommon scenario to experience.

With the campus being as large and spaced out as it is, it is certainly recommended to wear a good pair of comfortable shoes to lectures.

Related: Major Differences Between High School and University

students rushing from one class to another

So now that you’ve found the correct lecture hall it’s time to


Given that some lecture halls are built to take 700 ish students, you’d think the task of locating an available seat a breeze.

I mean it has to be easier than finding the correct lecture hall, right?!

Turns out that there is an overwhelming amount of individuals who prefer to sit right on the edge of the lecture benches to be able to make ‘The Great Escape’, but that part comes later.

So now that you’ve found a bench that has practically no-one placed on it, apart from the genius who decides to perform a ‘road-block’ right on the edge…

photo of a packed lecture hall from the top left corner of the room

Now is the time to


Another piece of advice is to stock-up on some ice-breakers.

I’ve found that a well-crafted ‘Dad Joke’ tends to do the trick quite well.


Right so you’ve found a viable place to sit, you’ve broken the ice with your newly made friend so it is now time to


The end is in sight now and all you have to do is make it to roughly to the halfway mark and you should be set to take a seat.

Pro tip: mind your inner ankles. They tend to take a fair beating if you aren’t conscious of bench legs beneath the seating plank.

children's playground slides, bright yellow and orange


Consider yourself lucky if you have a moment or two to catch your breath before the unrelenting pace of work begins.

This will typically be in the form of:

  • Checking your phone
  • Chatting to your mates
  • Chatting to randoms in the hopes they become your mates
  • Taking out your books
  • Readying your stationary
  • Wondering why it is exactly that you’re sitting in class (we all have our moments)

Related: 15 Types of Students

''why am i doing this'' written in chalk on a chalk board


There’s never been a more apt situation to use the saying ”hit the ground running” than when in a lecture.

You sure better have buckled up because the steam train (lecturer) will definitely leave you at the station if you are not on-board.

Between presentation slides that seem to disappear before your eyes and educators that speak faster than the speed of light, surviving a lecture is a commendable feat.

Related: Power-House Productivity Strategies for Students

checkered flag close-up


Now this phenomenon is one that I have certainly been intrigued by.

As a result of such, I have taken it upon myself to determine just how exactly one can measure the length of a lecture.

With countless hours in investigating this matter I have come to find the following:

The general formula for calculating the length of a lecture is given by:

Prescribed time – 5 minutes = actual length of lecture.

Despite lecturers’ best efforts, the tidal wave of eagerness for ‘The Great Escape’ amongst your fellow students will certainly override any captivating content that is being discussed.

woman sitting at a desk with her laptop and coffee and checking her smartwatch for the time

At last, we have arrived at the pivotal moment of any lecture


Remember those streetwise persons who sat on the edge of the benches?

Yes well, when it comes time for the lecture to end, their investment of constantly allowing others to shuffle into the row pays dividends:

They are able to make a beeline for the exits.

man running through a tunnel

Those who were not able to secure an edge seat on the other hand …


Now lecture halls would not be built for 700 people for no reason.

They are built for 700 people to accommodate 700 people, and so you can imagine that there will be a queue to exit the premises.

With this in mind, if you weren’t able to catch your breath before the lecture, use this time of waiting as one of meditation and just breathe!

long queue of people waiting to enter a building


I hope this post has helped you to reach some sort of understanding about what to expect from a lecture.

Whilst they may have their moments, come exam time you’ll be glad you attended classes.


What is the most comical experience you’ve had during a lecture?

Are These Things on Your Bucket List?

Find out how a YouTube video became the seed of compiling the ultimate bucket list. What’s on your list?

Now I don’t know about you, but I’m quite a fan of YouTube.

Checking out all the uniquely interesting content that creatives upload on the daily to the platform – for me – is quite captivating.

I am always amazed by how fascinating and entertaining some people’s lives are.

And so the other day I was browsing through the Home Page – as you do – and a video of Yes Theory popped up.

With an intriguing title and a captivating thumbnail, I clicked on it.

So what was the video that lead me into not only watching that video in particular, but then also searching their channel for other content to consume?

Quite simply, they went around asking strangers what they would do in their final 24-hours to live.

There was a catch to the video though.

You see, they weren’t ‘just’ asking strangers how they would go about living the last 24-hours of their lives.

Oh no, they were trying to locate and source a person with the most specific and extravagant way to spend their final day on earth.

It took them a while, but they eventually found the perfect subject for the video.

So this got me thinking, what are some of the cool things that a person can do in their lifetime?

So I thought I’d put down a few ideas that I came up with.

Except I don’t want for this list to be purely based on my primitive imagination, I truly want for us to compile the most comprehensive bucket-list out there.

But alas, here are some of the ideas that I thought up:


  • Skydiving
  • Going to the Eiffel Tower
  • Flying First Class
first-class suite on an airline
  • Going on a cruise
  • Running a marathon
  • Visiting Base Camp of Mount Everest
mount everest from a distance at dawn
  • Touring Google Headquarters
  • Traveling on The Tube
  • Seeing the pyramids in Egypt
a camel in front of the eqyptian pyramids
  • Eating a Deep Dish Pizza in NYC
  • Going to Times Square
  • Experiencing Carnaval in Brazil
multi-colored powder exploding
  • Playing a game of Roulette in Vegas
  • Having a game of Poker in Vegas
  • River rafting
roulette wheel
  • Seeing the Big Ben upfront
  • Going on the London Eye
  • Touring the Great Wall of China
the big ben
  • Completing a cooking course
  • Attending an art auction
  • Ordering Flambe at a restaurant

Related: 10 Critical Skills Formal Education Won’t Provide

flambe being cooked in flames
  • Going on a Gondola ride
  • Skiing in the Swiss Alps
  • Taking a road trip with mates
gondolas in venice
  • Going on a cable car ride
  • Seeing The Great Barrier Reef
  • Visiting The Grand Canyon
the great barrier reef
  • Hot Air Ballooning
  • Going on a train trip
  • Seeing the Northern Lights
  • Going to The Cradle of Humankind
colorful hot air balloon in the sky


Life is short and there is an over-abundance of exciting and cool things to experience throughout our lives.


What items do you want to be added to this list?

Are You Looking For Some Tasty Treats?

If only there was a bakery that offered a wide variety of fudgy products, gourmet cupcakes and cheesecake. TheFudgyDen is the go-to bakery for your sweet tooth cravings.

For all of us with ‘‘sweet teeth” out there, this one is definitely going to be worth it. 

I’ve always had a sweet tooth ‘’problem’’. 

The amount of appreciation I have for a perfect block of fudge, a scrumptious, gourmet cupcake, or even possibly the ultimate shortbread cookie is indescribable. 

Starting off at varsity just a few months ago, I was bound to meet a whole host of new and interesting people. 

One of those people was Adelene van Rooyen

Not only does Adelene have a good eye for the social media side of things – when it comes to marketing – but she also tends to offer the most delicious gourmet cupcakes at our House Committee meetings.

The part that stumped me back then was that I couldn’t understand how she was not making these treats as items for sale. 

Little did I know of course that ‘back in 2018’ when Adelene was ‘halfway through my first-year experience’ the penny dropped for her to start up TheFudgyDen


The story goes that Adelene’s mom – Dia – ‘always made us fudge’ and so they thought why not give it a shot.

As a student, you will come to realize that ‘student life is really expensive’. 

This fact led the team to start off with ‘original fudge’ and have since grown to the point where they now have theirvery own Fudge sauce, Fudge ice cream, Fudge flavors and so much more’ – because they don’t only bake fudge

the word ''growth'' is being spelt out on an exponential curve


If you haven’t yet gathered, TheFudgyDen is a ‘home-based, family bakery’ that produces all their products with great care and attention to detail

Being able to accomplish this feat though is easier said than done and so it only makes sense that there is a team of family members who all contribute to the end product. 

TheFudgyDen wouldn’t be TheFudgyDen if it didn’t have any products to sell, this is where Dia – the mother – slots into things. 

As the baker, Dia has an eye for the finer details. 

Every treat that is sent out for orders is carefully analyzed and assessed against her high standards of quality

Simply put, ‘she is the mastermind behind the products’ who ensures that stock is up to date and is no less than top quality

Now that’s the final show though, but as with any business, there are also going to be things that take place behind the scenes. 

Meet Nick – the father – who handles all the essential matters for running a business. 

In short, he is a ‘very important part of the team’ which deems him the mastermind behind the operations of TheFudgyDen. 

With registering a business name being one of the many imperative tasks to be completed by Nick, the business would need something to be identified by. 

Nico – the youngest brother – was the one responsible for crafting ‘’TheFudgyDen’’. 

Adding to the band of brothers is Terence – the oldest brother – who is a dynamic player: be it running deliveries, purchasing stock, cleaning up the kitchen, or even lending a hand with the packaging, he is the go-to guy

Everything seems to be in place for ‘a perfect team’, but there is still one major thing that hasn’t been considered: how does the family know if their products are any good?! 

This is where Bryan – Adelene’s boyfriend – steps up to the plate. 

Without a doubt, he certainly has a flagship role in the team.

He always tastes a new product to ensure it is delicious and ready to be added to our official product list’ 

Speaking of a product list, how exactly do customers know what to order and find more information on TheFudgyDen?

Adelene is somewhat of a marketing wizard and so it is her sole responsibility to see to the ‘marketing and communication’ side of things. 

She is the lady that is the creator of the bakery’s upbeat website, social media feeds/ pages, and looks at the orders being sent off correctly, etc. 

two hands holding the word familly


Besides just the family-business aspect, this up and coming bakery has a lot going for it

  • ‘We create our own recipes
  • A fair few of their inspirations come from past ‘’failures’’ 
  • Each recipe is tweaked ‘until it is perfect’ 
  • Their products are made ‘from scratch with love and our dedication
  • As a customer you are not just another face in the crowd, you form part of a community 
chalk images of fish swimming in a singular direction except for one identical fish that is coloured in and swimming contra te others


With so many fantastic and delectable products on offer, it can be difficult to decide on which ones you want to try out first. 

With this in mind – to make your decision process slightly easier – I spoke to Adelene about what some of the popular choices are. 

Bestsellers include: 

  • Salted Caramel Fudge 
  • Fudgy Ice Cream 

Adelene’s personal favorite is the Fudgy Ice Cream because of its creaminess. 

In her own words, it is ‘just the best dessert, even on a cold day’. 

variety of chocolates
Disclaimer: Image is solely for illustrative purposes


As is with a bakery, the team is always being kept on their toes.

They are continually experimenting with new fudge flavors to provide their customer base with as much choice as possible. 

The team would also like to increase their products’ presence in supermarkets, so keep your eye out for your friendly bee-packaged, sweet treats. 

Beyond just product development though, there is chatter around opening up a café

This certainly won’t be happening in the immediate future as Adelene is fully committed to her studies, but ‘it is definitely a goal for us’ and an exciting one at that!

To paint a picture

Hopefully one day you will walk past a soft yellow, bee-themed café with shelves full of delicious fudge and customers filled with happiness while enjoying a cup of coffee, paired with a slice of cheesecake.’

two cappucinos in yellow coffee sets on a coffee table


Adelene had a few words of encouragement/ advice that she wanted to share with our aspiring bakers: 

  • Preparing ‘stock takes a lot of time’, so be prepared to commit at least 2-3 days for this – based on a 2-man-team.
  • Be flexible around your studies/ other commitments if those do take preference.
  • Invest in your customers, because when tough times such as Covid-19 come around and you are forced to shut shop, they will be your lifelines.
  • Don’t be fooled: ‘it will always spark a craving’ when baking niceties – fight the temptation.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment: ‘most of our products weren’t even planned and they actually happened due to a mistake’. Adelene calls them ‘successful accidents’ where for instance they added the wrong sugar and so the fudge sauce recipe was born. 
  • Get started and ‘just do it’.
  • Everything takes time, hard work and a goal’. Part of the reason why TheFudgyDen has been able to grow as it has is because its team shares a common goal. 
  • Ask for help.
advice is spelt out using fridge magnet letters


With this fun-loving bakery only having been in existence since 2018 they certainly have covered some extensible ground.

Related: Read our interview with these ‘college meme account’ admins


Which tasty product on their website catches your eye? 

Find TheFudgyDen on Instagram

10 Critical Skills: Formal Education Won’t Provide

The hard truth is that your piece of paper isn’t enough in today’s world. You have got to be proactive to get ahead in the working world.

The very nature of the current educational system amidst the digital disruption that the world is facing is a highly controversial one.

For years questions have been raised regarding the relevance of an outdated educational system in a fast-changing world that we live in.

Now whilst the educational system won’t be changing anytime soon, that doesn’t mean that we, as students, shouldn’t be aligning ourselves with the demands of tomorrow’s world.

The only thing over which we do have influence is how proactive we are in our preparation for the 4th industrial revolution.

We’ve all pointed out numerous flaws within the education system from time to time.

So let’s change the approach of that conversation and look at the things which we can focus on to make ourselves sought after, qualified professionals in the world of tomorrow.

First up on the list, is a point that ties into your mindset


The very nature of the structure of the educational system has been set to create a complete dependence upon it.

It creates an ‘employee mentality’ from our first day of school.

At such an impressionable age in our lives, we have a ‘toxic reliance’ imposed upon us by the educational system.

How is this so?

Simply put, the educational system is nothing more than an outdated business model.
So what can we do to solve this problem?

It’s true, likely neither you nor I will likely see any tangible change to the system in our student lives, but the system will inevitably be altered and changed.

Because of this fact, we must begin to look ahead and begin to sync the trends of the future with that of the educational resources that will need to be implemented.

leashes hooked onto fence

Piggybacking off of the last point is


As I am sure we all know, the content of our various courses can at times seem very mundane and dull.

And because the syllabus is concrete, it means that there is very little room to think outside of the box.

The flexibility of a formal education is limiting.

There is only so much room to wander before you get reigned back in and told to re-calibrate to the content of your course.

The solution to this problem is as simple as it can possibly get:
The Internet.

The vast array of free resources to consume and digest have catalyzed the speed at which we as students can process information is remarkable.

lightbulb of colouful building blocks as persons brain

The internet is a futuristic asset and so it only makes sense that we now cover the topic of


Human beings, we are curious creatures.

There is an innate magnetism from deep inside us that draws us towards asking questions.

But sadly – as mentioned earlier – the modern-day educational system doesn’t accommodate this common trait of ours.

The lack of attention that is paid towards the development of complex problem-solving skills is rather alarming.

lightbulbs on stairs

The only way to gain those problem-solving skills is through


A massive shortfall in a formal education is the lack of doing.

Hands-on experience is the most valuable experience a person can ever wish to be subject to.

There is worth in studying case-studies for the sake of understanding the application of various concepts, but Id imagine that it’d be of far more relevance if students could actually live through their own case-studies.

action changes things

In terms of theory though we now need to look at


Whatever your career path might look like, there is always going to be the need for strategy.

A formal education certainly gives a student an upper-hand when it comes to foundational knowledge, however a real-life strategy is rarely ever is as simple as ABC.

chess board with knight facing row of pawns

Speaking of careers, don’t you think its funny how we are brought up in a system that trains us up to be employees, yet rarely ever helps us to successfully


If this isn’t a red flag then I don’t know what is.

Hypocritical by nature, through and through.

Once again the point of potent dependence has to be emphasized.

This is how the system maintains it’s leash on us as supposedly independent, and qualified working professionals.

To solve this problem, we must have a heightened urgency to begin cultivating our networks yesterday!

resume on blue desk with glasses keyboard and pencil

On the topic of engaging and interacting with people, we need to look at


Human beings as a whole – let alone students – are social creatures.

We like to mix & mingle with each. By doing so, we build relationships with one another.

The shortfall in this regard with the educational system is that there is absolute focus placed on developing ‘hard skills’ yet none placed on ‘soft skills’.

And this is alarming because with the ‘technological revolution arrival‘ nearing, many ‘hard skills’ are going to be taken over by AI.

The need for human to human interaction in our society will never cease to exist.
Though the form in which it takes place will likely change.

two hands toucing fingertips

We’ve spoken about a lot of things that are going to change in the coming years, but we haven’t mentioned one thing that ‘isn’tgoing to change


Yes, there is the whole new-age concept and discussion about cryptocurrencies and so on, but the fundamental skills and concepts behind managing finances will remain true.

Firstly, being able to know how to manage your money is an imperative life-skill.

And secondly, everyone should be able to have a general knowledge of accounting principles so that they can get the high-level-overview when they talk to their accountants.

And yes obviously if you are studying a commerce degree this skill is thrown into the mix of things, but business degrees make up only a fragment of the other fields on offer for studies.

pink piggybank

Tying into business and working with people,


This is the foundation of any business out there.

Without sales, a company will have zero revenue and subsequently go under.

So why is this crucial skill not being taught?

But sales extends way past its literal application in the business world and dives into our personal lives as well:

  • Dating
  • Watching a movie with a group of friends
  • Deciding on which restaurant to eat at

The art of persuasion and negotiation are quite simply survival skills.

4 business people in suits

On the topic of food though


A slightly more fun and interesting one to mention.

I’m not saying that we should all come out of school in confidence that we can become the next Master Chef, but a person’s got to eat to live.

So why are there not some cooking classes or that thrown into the curriculums at school?

Related: 8 Easy Vegan Recipes To Try For Yourself

pasta, tomatoes, oil, and salt on a table


I hope this gave you some food for thought to think about and open up your perspective on the way forward in this evolving world of ours.

University is here to stay for a significant while longer so the only thing we can do for now is to try and be as proactive as we possibly can.


What else do you think should be added to this list?

Finding the Right Side-Hustle for You

The internet can make it hard to decide: what side-hustle should I start? Play to your strengths and use this article as a guide to make your final decision.

Juggling between your academic, social, and family commitments as a student is tough.

It seems like there is often just not enough time available.

Not to mention you now trying to throw in another complexity of trying to find a side-gig that can give you a little bit of extra fat in your wallet.

But beyond just the financial upside to finding a side job, there are other benefits that include being able to boost your CV, gain invaluable experience – no matter the line of work that you end up in, and also the ability to connect with and meet other new people.

When it comes to finding a job though it can be a bit of a difficult process to undergo.

For starters, you have to be able to find a job, and in a job market that is becoming increasingly saturated every day, which is not by any means easy.

Then you also have to be sure that you at least are in some shape or form competent to be able to grab up the opportunity.

As if that wasn’t enough already, you also need to evaluate if the time investment that you will be making is going to be worthwhile or if your time is better spent on your books.

So as a way of helping you to navigate the job market and set you out onto a path of exploration, we are going to look at some of the ways that you can find the right hustle for you.

Related: The Side-Hustle Starter Kit

But first, we need to look at the different


‘’Time is money’’

I am sure you’ve heard that before, but to be of more relevance to our academic context:

‘’Time is knowledge’’

And knowledge is an asset.

So if you are going to be investing your time into a job, be sure to weigh-up the ‘costs’ of both sides: job or no job.

yellow clock drawn on chalkboard with white lines going through it


Probably not the most realistic expectation to set for yourself, because being a student is a full-time job in itself.

It’s incredible to hear of students that are able to make this act work out for them, though if you are fortunate enough to not have to juggle studies with a career, don’t.

hands holding a tablet on a coffee table with a coffee

If not full-time then


Working part-time is quite an ideal situation for most.

It allows you to not be torn between your academics and work.

There is also a structure that is set up for you to follow and so it provides you with a sense of reliability in that you know exactly when you will and won’t be working.

team of young adults putting their hands into the middle of their group circle

Part-time jobs can be great, but if you are a student with an absolutely ridiculous schedule then perhaps consider


This category of jobs is ideal for those of us who just want to work on our own schedules.

The beauty lies in the fact that you have 100% control of how you organize and run your gig.

Freelancing as a type of hustle allows basically anyone to pick a gig and run with it as and when they choose.

Students whose schedules keep them bound and tied up, can look into finding a gig that is freelancing orientated as it will always be able to compromise for the sake of their academic commitments.

So now that there is a basic overview of job categories we can look into the different hustle opportunities that are available and relevant to our current circumstances.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that we are living through the day & age of internet real-estate.

Content Creators have saturated the internet with their thoughts, ideas, and passions all across the web.

But that doesn’t mean that you can’t join in on it too.

piece of paper with freelance written on it

Let’s wind it way back and start off with the first boom of content creation


A classic example of grabbing a share of internet real estate.

This model is sometimes viewed as typically ‘outdated’ given that it saw it’s boom around 2002-2005 but that does not mean it’s too late to jump onto the bandwagon.

Building a blog is a great way to set yourself up – eventually –  as a landmark on the internet for your selected niche.

If you’ve got a knack for words or enjoy putting your thoughts down on ‘paper’ then this might be the right option for you.

Beyond just aligning your interests with your choice of direction, starting up a blog provides the opportunity for you to claim a stake in the e-commerce industry evolution that is rapidly catalyzing in today’s world.

 It’s an investment and therefore won’t happen overnight – monetization – but don’t let that stop you from the prospect of earning a passive income down the line.

laptop on a desk with 'be a blogger' typed on the screen of the computer

Maybe you’re not the Shakespeare of the 21st century and instead you want to consider


With YouTube gaining as much traction as it has, and the world now living through the video-age.

Starting a channel is a pretty good idea for those of you that want to be able to portray a part of your personality as well.

We spoke monetization on blogging and equally so with vlogging, there is monetization potential here for you too.

A big up to vlogging is that you can obviously advertise your merch or whatever product you come up with, without having to invest heavily into other forms of advertising.

man recording himself on camera for a vlog

We’ve covered, written and video so now it only makes sense for us to cover audio:


The business of everyday life is growing increasingly by the hour.

With all those extra tasks comes the need for multitasking.

Starting up a podcast now is a wise idea given that there are only upwards of around 600 000* podcasts out there today.

Compare that to the 600 000 000* blogs and it provides a fair deal of perspective.

You would be catching this tidal wave on the up.

If you are thinking about starting a podcast then start yesterday.

orange headphones and orange play button inside the headphones' loop

That’s enough content creation, for now, how about being an


The day & age of advertisements is coming to a close.

If you can leverage this fact against having a significant social media following then you’re in business.

The crucial part of this opportunity is aligning yourself with a brand that is true to you.

Manage this successfully and it will aid your marketing campaigns in the future.

influencer typed on a phone screen

Speaking of marketing


Yes, that’s right.

You can literally hire yourself out to consult other people on how to improve their social media feeds to amass greater followings.

This obviously requires a level of credibility and knowledge on how to do the above, but if you get this trick down then you’re in for a successful venture.

pink hashtag speech bubble against a blue background

You could also consider to create content for others’ feeds through


With the world of socializing undergoing such rapid change, many businesses are seeing the urgency of latching onto social media platforms.

If they are not on social then they won’t exist.

Because of this, they will need compelling and captivating content for their followers.

professional graphic designer working at their desk

On a slightly more ‘personal’ and academic level you can also look at becoming a


If you’ve got a strength or are passionate about a subject in particular then you could look down this alley for some extra cash.

This will by nature require good communicative skills, but luckily for you, those can always be worked on & improved.

tutor helping a student

That’s the academic side of things though. What if you’re more sporty?


This is a great way of meeting up & finding people that have the same/ similar passions as you do.

Begin in this line clearly means that you are by nature active, so what better way to do it than by also now getting paid to stay in shape?!

various home gym weights displayed against a blue background

And lastly, one that I think is going to become of more relevance to us as we progress through this pandemic is


There are people out there with health complications that will now be second-guessing whether or not to go out to the shops for the sake of their health – and anyone for that matter who is concerned about contracting the virus.

If you are able to offer a service to them that reduces the risk of exposure to the virus then you’re in luck.

Keep your radius of operations small and consider expanding the idea to a team that can maximize the efficiency of the operation.

man delivering groceries at someones front door


This is just a list of basic student side-hustles that you can look into pursuing. A little bit of extra cash always helps to shorten the length of the month, especially when you’re a student.

Related: The Student Money-Making Mindset

There is a lot of negativity floating around amidst this pandemic, but keep your head on a swivel because there is & will continue to be a whole host of business opportunities that result from this current situation.


What side-hustle are you looking to start?

The Side-Hustle Starter Kit for Students

For all the ambitious students out there, this article is for you. DON’T FORGET to think about these things before you launch your side gig.

It’s become quite a trend of late: Entrepreneurship

Add that to the fact that you are a student and a little bit of extra cash goes a long way, it sounds like the dream come true.

University is one of the better times to start up a side-hustle. You have arguably the most freedom you will likely get before getting involved in the 9-5 scheme, and you are surrounded by a whole bunch of aspiring professionals

There is no shortage of ambition in your immediate surrounding environment. 

One couldn’t ask for a more conducive environment to be placed in when looking at building-up a side-hustle. 

Besides the benefit of being placed in a conducive environment, there also isn’t necessarily any pressure placed on your shoulders

1. It’s a side-hustle, not entirely an entrepreneurial venture.

2. You will still be at university to work towards getting your piece of paper.

One of the few downsides to a failed start-up is possibly recovering zero of your start-up costs. 

Apart from that though, you’ve got ‘nothing’ to lose. 

With ‘being your own boss’ having such an established presence at the moment, the web is overpopulated with ideas for student side hustles, yet not many provide insight on things to consider before launching your side gig.

So that’s exactly what this article is going to aim to accomplish: things to consider before getting your hands dirty with the construction process of your startup. 

That said, the first thing you will want to do is 


Why do I want to build my side-hustle? 

It wouldn’t be a surprise to hear that you have been somewhat influenced by all those countless entrepreneurship gurus across the internet.

But go beyond that, dive deep into your motivations behind wanting to create another income stream for yourself. 

If you can successfully outline this question, then you can direct the vision you have for your hustle. 

Having a vision is crucial to the success of your goals. 

Without vision, you won’t be able to correctly align your goals with the message you want for the ‘brand’ to carry forward as well as the atmosphere and feel to it. 

Don’t rush this first step. Take all the time you need to get your road-map crystal clear

But most importantly, by being real with yourself you will quickly be able to determine whether or not you are just jumping on the bandwagon or if you have somewhat ‘purified’ motives behind your drive. 

post-it note on pin board with what is you why written on it

Now that you have your ‘’why’’ mapped out, ask yourself 


You’ve got the ‘’why’’ now you’re just missing the what

What do I mean by ‘’’the what’’? 

Your passions

Figure out what you’re passionate about. 

The benefits to syncing your hustle with your passion/s are endless, but the major ones include: 

  • Being able to accomplish an authentic feel to your gig. Remember what we were saying earlier about ‘purified’ motives?!
  • Secondly, when the ‘tough times’ come knocking – and they will – having that innate drive to want to do something will help you keep at it and prosper through the adversity. 
  • Lastly, if you are passionate about something then it makes sense that you would naturally know a fair bit about your chosen field. Being knowledgeable about a field helps establish credibility and assert your authority within the given field. 
what are you passionate about is written on a road sing

Enough questions, now it’s time to start 


Right off of the bat, you’re going to want to be prepared for a long process

Like a very, very long process

Seriously don’t underestimate the time that this step is going to consume. 

There is a high likelihood that – if you are ‘really’ planning out your idea to the T – that this section of the job will become frustrating

This will be because you’re going to feel like you are making zero progress

But just like we said earlier, don’t rush the process. 

This part is going to be the most important because once you do launch, you’re going to hit the ground running

You won’t want to be playing the chasing game. That will be a one-way ticket straight to taking an ‘’L’’. 

Now as frustrating as what this process might become, you will thank yourself once you launch because with launching your gig comes another wave of stresses

Planning helps to best reduce the stresses you will experience. 

Though as important as planning is, just remember that you are not going to put together a flawless plan

Trying to perfect every little detail is going to eliminate any possibility of actually executing your idea. 

Put in the grind and then go with the flow.

diary, coffee and flowers are on a white table

One of the first things you might want to consider when planning your idea is it’s 


To win the jackpot you’ll want for your studies and side-hustle to be able to co-exist

The lesser the demand that your side-hustle places on your studies the better. 


It’s a ‘’side’’ hustle, not an entrepreneurial venture. 

We are not looking to start-up a business – at least not immediately – but rather just keep our bank account stimulated

Also, there are going to be times when you will need to compromise one for the other and you want to be able to do that and not be stuck between a rock & a hard place. 

If your idea is proving to not be the most flexible don’t just knock it entirely, play around with the idea and see how you can try and re-angle it to better suit your schedule. 

silhouette of a woman juggling 3 balls

In a different sense of the word – flexibility – you also want to consider the 


Right now, the world of business is caught up in quite an aggressive period of change

The business world was inevitably going to shift & change, but COVID-19 has certainly catalyzed the process. 

With this in mind, you want to ask yourself if your gig is going to be able to adjust relatively easily or not

The business world is ‘gradually’ turning a cold shoulder on physical aspects. 

It is being re-defined by a digital accent

How does your side-hustle account for this transition process? 

men shaking hands with a binary code filter over the image

Now that we’re on the topic of adaptability, we need to look at the 


We are living through one of the greatest technological tidal waves that mankind has ever seen. 

Anyone or anything that is going to choose to bet against tech will lose

Technology needs to be embraced

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that this tsunami is going to challenge and drown a fair-few industries

Be wise in your choice of industry. 

The value of clearly defining your industry will help you to accurately plan & execute your marketing strategy.

You will also be able to identify your target market & fellow competitors

On the topic of competitors though, if you can identify these key figures in your niche then you can use them as lessons to learn from. Find what it is that they do well and then add your signature to the ‘secret’ recipe.

little child's feet in front of a line with future written on it on the road


We have already hinted towards the point of establishing the 


By this, I am not just talking about external factors that will influence the timeline of your hustle. 

No no. 

Right at the start, we spoke about why figuring out your ‘’why’’ was crucial, because it quickly determines if you are trend-hopping

If you knowingly go trend-hopping then once your honeymoon period is over, your side hustle will soon crash & burn

Be honest with yourself about the level of commitment you’re willing to show towards this gig of yours. 

And even if you are trend-hopping – like producing face masks for instance – it won’t be successful unless you are committed and put in the work

decide commit focus succeed on wooden blocks with an ocean bacground

Now that you’re ready to get out of the starting blocks, it’s time to 


The key realization to come to terms with is that it takes money to make money

You will need to plug in some capital if you have any hopes of building up your side gig. 

But how much is it going to cost

Well, that’s where the research part comes in. 

Start-up funds are not always the easiest to get your hands on, but luckily for you, you would’ve done sufficient planning to be able to confidently pitch your idea to someone else if you need to have some financial help. 

Related: Money Making Mindset for Students

money bag in a persons hand with a blue background


The world of business is quite exciting. The thrill of the pursuit of making your dreams come true is quite exciting. 

I hope that you were able to get some worth out of this and possibly gain a little more insight about things to think about before starting a side hustle. 


Why do you want to start a side hustle?