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The Latest in my Spending Journey – Weekend Spending Diary

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Hello! I thought I’d give you a peek into how I spent money on the weekend. This spending diary wasn’t planned, so I definitely wasn’t on my best behaviour. I think being radically honest is going to be a big part of this journey.

First, a note on last week

I didn’t spend any money between Sept 30 and the afternoon of Oct 4. The hand ended up causing me extreme and unbearable pain from the surgery. I worked from home Monday in pain. I went to work on Tuesday and left in tears, and didn’t go back to work the rest of the week. There was a Friendsgiving dinner at my place for 15 people the weekend prior, and I had lots of leftovers. Once I got through those, I made a big pot of turkey soup and lived on that for days on end. Mike bought us Swiss Chalet (a classic Canadian rotisserie chicken chain) with coupons we got in the mail one night to break up the monotony. I spent nada!

Friday, October 4th

I worked from home and left around 2pm for a break. For years now, I’ve used loyalty points cards to reduce my grocery bill. PC Optimum points came in handy to buy acetaminophen and ibuprofen for the hand pain (I alternate taking the two per the advice of my surgeon). The meds and a bottle of Gatorade came to $24 (I got economy-sized pill bottles). I cashed in $20 worth of points and as such, only spent $4 out of pocket.

On to the grocery store.

I bought kale, blue cheese, apple, red onion, and pork tenderloin for $21. With a nice dinner, one might enjoy a glass of wine. A decent bottle was procured for $14.95.

I made a giant massaged kale salad with toasted walnuts, blue cheese, apple, dried cranberry, and red onion that I nibbled on for three days. I served that with half a baked potato and scoop of greek yogurt, and jerk pork tenderloin (weird, but it all worked together).

Total spent: $39.95

Saturday, October 5th

I made eggs to eat with that kale salad for brunch. I’m lucky in that I really don’t mind eating the same foods over and over again. In the early evening, I walked to KFC for a dirty ol’ bucket of chicken, but there was a lineup out the door. Everyone received the same mailer coupons as me! I admitted defeat and walked home to eat leftover jerk pork and salad. I was VERY close to stopping for Hakka food on my way home (my neighborhood’s specialty!) but I didn’t want to blow $20 for no good reason.

That evening, I had plans to go to Nuit Blanche. It’s an all night art festival in Toronto, with large installations of interactive and immersive art all over the city. I hailed an Uber because I was late meeting my friends. Curling my hair with my injured hand took forever (I didn’t think that one through). That cost me $26 after tip. Mike purchased us a bunch of cans of cider, which we loaded in a backpack to wander around the city with. Toronto is kind of like a big street party during Nuit Blanche, and while drinking in the street isn’t legal, cops don’t bother you if you’re being courteous and orderly. Especially during Nuit Blanche.

I ended up getting an Uber for a very dear friend who uses a flip phone – $12.

Uber was also my way home alone at 5:30 am – $25

I ordered Uber Eats Mcdonalds breakfast for Mike and I – $18

Total spent: $81. All on Uber. Spending fail. 

Sunday, October 6th

Sunday, I slept until the early afternoon. I imagine a good deal of Torontonians did this.

In the afternoon, I went out for weekly groceries. Toilet paper, chicken, shrimp, laundry supplies, and cat food were the larger purchases. My pantry needed a few things stocked up as well. I spent $104, but have what I need for work lunches and dinner til Thursday or Friday. I made cajun shrimp and kale salad for dinner and called it an early night.

Total spent: $104

Weekend total: $224.95

Overall, I think this is a fair example of my routine weekend spending. The ride shares are gratuitous over this weekend. Other weekends, my food spending is off the rails. I have work to do here.


Weekly and Monthly Goals

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Last Week’s Goals

Hi everyone! I’m still finishing up the data collection for last month, but in the meantime, wanted to update you on my goals for last week. In short, food spending was perfect, but I only got my butt to the gym once. I also ended up having wine on Wednesday night. The boarder staying with me had some drama (a former employee vandalized his truck and stole both sets of keys) and after the police left, everyone wanted a drink.

There was one grocery store trip mid-week for $28 worth of supplies. All in all, I did okay financially but I’m disappointed in myself for not getting my schedule organized and not prioritizing fitness. I strongly believe that I need to have free/affordable distractions if I am going to be successful.

This Week’s Goals

This week, I want to be frugal. It’s my brother’s birthday on Friday, and I’ll budget $50 for that between gas (he lives about 90 minutes away) and some food/drinks to bring. I’m seeing my grandparents for brunch the morning after, and that should be at their place (fingers crossed, I really hate spending money on breakfast food because it’s so cheap to make at home). Beyond those two calendar items, it’s going to be a quiet weekend. Following that, I’ll be on vacation! I’m going to take a staycation to catch up on house organization and cleanliness, and then spend a few days at the cottage with friends.

Shop the Pantry and Freezer

I have three meals prepped for this week already including a big batch of homemade butternut squash soup. Once those meals are depleted, I’ll shop my own cupboard and chest freezer. There are lots of frozen food and pantry items to consume! In my pantry, I have curry paste, rice, chickpeas, tuna, and more. In the fridge, there is tofu and loads of fresh vegetables. I didn’t get much shopping done this weekend as it was Labor Day and I was busy all weekend, but I should be able to get through the week without adding to my grocery bill. I enjoy the exercise of emptying the freezers seasonally – it’s like a fresh start!

All Food From Home

Once again, no spending on coffee, snacks, lunch, or takeout dinners! No spending on food that isn’t from home. This will be a habit soon, and I won’t have to add it to my weekly list any longer.

Gym or Running x 3

I have a history of leg and foot injuries from adding mileage too fast. I’m going to aim for three fitness sessions this week, and four next week. None of these will cost money and as a bonus, I spend a lot less when I’m on track with fitness.

Setting Myself Up for Success

I want to make sure I meet each of these goals, so that’s it for my goals this week. They mirror last week’s goals except this time I’m not allowing for a grocery trip. I have to get some cat food and have a couple of house keys cut today, but beyond that I should not be spending this week.

To be honest with you all, I am still struggling quite a bit with impulse control and spending. I know my spending is down, but it’s wild how much guilt and anxiety are tied to my bank account. The adjustment is rough. Simply being aware of where my money is going is making me anxious. Then there are the mental battles of what I “deserve”, what is a “normal” amount of money to spend, how many life-altering changes can I make at once without feeling suffocated… It goes on and on. I know I can’t compare myself to others. I have to measure my success against myself and my own goals, and that’s really hard to do.

Monthly goals will be posted by Friday, along with The Reckoning (an account of my actual spending in August, and my takeaways).


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