Monday Check-in: Blind Spending

Good morning! It’s time to check in on our weekend spending.

I had a blind spending weekend, which meant that I didn’t attempt to estimate how much I’d spend this weekend, because my friends and I were planning on taking out a very good friend out for her birthday, and money wasn’t going to be an issue. We ended up at Momofuku Noodle Bar for their $100 fried chicken dinner, and ordered additional plates of pork and oyster buns, and plenty of beer. I had pulled out plenty of cash from the ATM in anticipation of paying for the birthday girl, but her fiance insisted on paying the entire check, and we fought him about it for a bit (he won). It was a fun time, and the birthday girl was content as can be. I paid $0 thanks to her handsome and generous fiance (I hope he’s reading this).

We decided to walk around a bit after our big meal, and stopped by a wine shop, where I had the birthday girl pick out whatever she wanted. She chose a bottle of Italian rose: $20.

I used Sunday to recover and spent $2.40 for coffee, and then $45.28 at the grocery store.

Total: $67.68

Although it was a blind spending weekend, I had anticipated spending more than $200. I’m planning on getting something nice for our handsome friend as a thank you gift. How did you do?

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52 Comments / Post A Comment

navigateher (#555)

I didn’t spend anything this weekend, only because we had a fun family weekend and I let my husband pay for everything (including the champagne that I had to have Sunday morning in a seashore cafe and other unnecessary stuff). It compensated nicely my spending something like $150 on summer clothes and sale shopping on Friday. We have a holiday in Spain coming up next week, and as it hasn’t been hot in here once this summer I had literally zero summer clothes.

But, Mike Dang, do you not get the “oh, I pulled out all this cash for the birthday thing and didn’t spend any of it BUT I COULD HAVE, so I might as well buy something nice for myself?” -thing? Just me?

@navigateher definitely not just you. last year i scored myself a sick $450 parking ticket that I just got reduced to $200 in court. Sadly my first thought was: $250 OF DRESSES!

Quinn A@twitter (#1,008)

Ugh. $93.72 on maybe six or seven days worth of groceries. Lots of expensive fish and frozen veggies and fresh exotic fruit. $53.20 on gas. And $30 on lottery tickets, because there was a $50 million jackpot plus 50 $1 million draws – but I won $60 and something like 32 free plays, so that’s actually all right.

jason (#1,335)

My own bachelor party! $10 in losses at the poker table and $1.50 for a recovery gatorade on Sunday afternoon. Not bad for a weekend of very heavy drinking and eating.

I didn’t have any idea of what I’d spend this weekend, because I didn’t have any plans. But here’s the damage:

Friday (which I took off from work): $57 at Target for 2 dresses and a pair of workout shorts that I should have tried on because they’re too small. Gonna return those so my total will be closer to $37. $35 at World Market for a compost bucket and filters and a box of white sangria. $30 for 3/4 a tank of gas. Should have paid $3.75 for fro yo but my card was declined because it expires this month and it’s acting wonky…so my friend bought it for me. Friday total (minus item I’m returning): $102.

Saturday: $12.79 at Rite Aid for a giant bottle of ibuprofen, some sour gummy worms, and a coke. $10.16 at the grocery store for dinner & some gourmet snackies to take to my parents’ house. Saturday total: $22.95.

Sunday: $15 at same grocery store for a roast chicken, six bananas, a box of cheese chips, and a box of 100 freeze pops.

Weekend total: $140. About half of that was spent on unneccessary food/wine. Urgh.

sockhopbop (#764)

I feel like I spent a bunch of money because I did a lot of things. But one of the advantages of hanging out with friends in a farmhouse most of the weekend is there’s nothing to buy! So: about $28 on groceries + $5 peaches from the farmer’s market, $3 on iced coffee, $5 on a pint of lemon-ricotta ice cream, $9 for a ticket to Moonrise Kingdom. Which is a-okay.

HarperK (#1,388)

Friday: My mom-in-law was in town, and she insisted on buying us dinner (pizza). We did not refuse! Total: $0

Saturday: Impulse-purchased a book for Kindle that I saw in one of Amazon’s Bargain Books e-mails. I’d heard good things about the book and would have probably paid full price for it. Total: $1.99.

Sunday:
Satisfied my own Pinkberry craving / bought husband a snack: $10.69
Trader Joe’s run: $34.60
Renewed Care.com membership to find new nanny, since current one just took a full-time job with Wells Fargo. Boo: $35.00

Weekend Total: $82.28

Aunt_Pete (#693)

I was planning on dropping some cash on Sunday so I had a no spending policy for Friday/Saturday that I actually stuck to! Yay me! I had a lazy Friday night and ate couscous and watched Reservoir Dogs. $0.00. Saturday I brought wine spritzer ingredients over to a friend’s house and then she generously insisted on taking me out for a few drinks. $0.00 but I should probably return the favor next time I have some dollars. Sunday I had a pool party so I dropped $21.00 on vodka for mixed drinks and $115.00 at the grocery store. That included a ton of fruit, a case of Bud Light and my food for the week. My sister owes me $45 for her portion, so total spending comes in at $91.00. I’ll take that, though I was really expecting the grocery bill to be under $100.00. I need to start making lists. Impulse buys are the death of me.

I feel like I spent so much money this weekend, probably because I had the entire week off from work.
Friday: $16 at Utrecht for a new paintbrush
Saturday: A friend of mine found a secret/awesome Kmart that is mysteriously easy to get to from where we live, $4.99 for a giant jar of pickles, $3.00 terracotta plant pot and saucer.
Sunday: $18 brunch, $8 beer later with friend for birthday. I used the brush I got on Friday to paint a card.
Not too bad.

jfruh (#161)

Mike, what do you do when you get out cash in anticipation of a specific purchase that doesn’t materialize? I get very nervous in such situations because I know that cash tends to slowly vanish from my wallet without me having any real plans for it. I’ve actually gone so far as to deposit cash back in the bank.

Mike Dang (#2)

Oh, I used what I had for the bottle of wine, and at the grocery store, but still have a fair amount of cash on me. I’ve taken most of it out of my wallet and hidden it away in my apartment. If it’s not in my wallet, it’s not going to disappear, and the next time I’m heading out and realize I need to hit the ATM, I’ll just remember to grab the cash I already have out.

ThatJenn (#916)

@Mike Dang Oooh, good solution.

In college I used to hit the ATM once per quarter, get $300 out, and that was my fun budget ’til the next break. It lived in an envelope in my room and only $50-100 made it into my wallet at any given time. I am thinking of starting to do this again to curb my optional spending.

mishaps (#65)

@Mike Dang If I have a bunch of cash in my wallet, sometimes I will challenge myself to see if I can make it last for X number of days. Like, I have $80 in my wallet right now, and if it weren’t for the fact that this is going to be a very expensive week, I would make a point of making that last through the week. Having a goal like that helps me when I’m tempted by an unplanned purchase.

moreteawesley (#545)

I spent very little this weekend, until Sunday night. $10 on groceries, $23 on brunch for me and my boyfriend. Then I decided I wanted to buy myself an early birthday present so I spent $54 on an online order Sunday night. Still under $100, so not too bad really.

$167 on a haircut, metro tickets, a bottle of wine, and groceries. Ouch.

I had a friend staying with me – the 2nd weekend out of three weekends in the span of a month. It is too expensive to host people! I’m also slightly miffed that she didn’t pick up more of the groceries tab.

I also am realizing just how introverted I am. This was my first week of living with a roommate again in two years, and that combined with my guest this morning put me in an AWFUL mood. I love my roommate but I’m not a morning person and don’t like speaking to people or acting chipper before 9am. I’ve also had plans every night last week, and do so again every night this week. Too much people time!!

Next Tuesday my last guest is gone and will try my best to avoid hosting people until at least September. Freedom is 8 days away!

probs (#296)

@raspberry cordial Hosting people is weirdly expensive.

probs (#296)

Friday-
$0.99- Comixology purchase, Lookouts #1
$8.00- Popcorn and drink; my girlfriend and I finally used a movie pass her mom gave us for Christmas to see Moonrise Kingdom; it was good!
$1.99- Cubemen on Steam
$17.88- Two drinks and hot food bar dinner for two at Harris Teeter
Saturday-
$13.00- Entry for two, Signal Hill Pool, Manassa, VA- A bunch of friends and my girlfriend and I helped paint the basement at our friend’s parents house; her dad was recently paralyzed in a car crash and they’re adapting their basement into an apartment for him. After painting some of us went to my friend and her husband’s house, got hammered, then walked to this pool and rode around the lazy river a million times.
$9.44- Six pack and snacks at 7-11
Sunday-
$8- Entry to Cape Henlopen State Park in Delaware for out-of-state car. My girlfriend was born and raised in DE, and was sad to drive around in a car with DC plates. Had a great day at the beach.

Total- about $59.50, which is pretty good for me, and really good considering how much fun stuff I got to do. Benefited from my girlfriend paying for things and our friends giving us a lot of food and booze.

dotcommie (#662)

$40 on all-you-can-eat Polish buffet, glass of wine (only $4!), tickets to see Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (so worth it), and movie theater soda/popcorn. Regret none of this.

Saturday: $25 on brunch at taqueria, wine to bring to BBQ, chips, and Visine

Sunday: $7 on soup and iced tea at local coffee shop so I could “work” there but their internet was too shitty to remote desktop. Grr.

I hoped to spend under $80 and I did. Not bad. I’ve been spending sooo much lately since I couldn’t bear to cook during the heat wave (lots of veggies rotted, too). I cooked a lot on Sunday and it feels so good again.

MuffyStJohn (#280)

Visited family this weekend, which meant that my mother covered almost everything (including a suave new haircut). This meant I only had to pay for a short train trip from BWI to Union Station. Unfortunately, the family member driving me to BWI doesn’t do this thing called “planning ahead,” so I bought the ticket last minute and paid about twice what it would normally cost ($42 for a 15-minute trip – I was not happy). I know this still worked out in my favor overall, but $42!!!

maebyfunke (#292)

Friday – $18 for a bottle of Bourbon my friend wanted so that he could make an Old Fashioned, even though I knew I wasn’t going to like them but he paid for all the groceries, so hey. Plus $3 on seltzer, plastic forks, aluminum pans.
Saturday – $26 for dinner for me and same friend.
Sunday – $14.50 on groceries at this realllly cheap place near my friend’s house in Queens that I always go to when I’m there, even though it means taking groceries back to Manhattan on the subway, then $13.50 on take out for dinner.
So $75 overall, which is not too terrible, except that I was on vacation all week last week, and even though I was lucky enough to go with a very generous friend, I’m still a little nervous to check my CC balance.

ThatJenn (#916)

Friday: $19 on dinner; leftovers became breakfast Saturday.

Friday: $9 on the Kindle version of Game of Thrones, because I just finished watching the first season and want MORE and rereading the same story I just saw, in more detail, sounds fun.

Saturday: $58 on gas, of which I used about 1/4 tank driving around to awesome state parks, which I get into for free because I have an annual pass – so actually not bad for a weekend’s entertainment.

Saturday: $17 on two incredibly expensive but wonderful hot chocolates and an incredibly expensive but wonderful chocolate bar from a local candy company. A major splurge, but awesome anyway.

Sunday: $7 on my birth control. Cheaper than a baby and on my flexible spending card anyway.

Sunday: $28 on hair care products and a huge thing of vinegar. This shampoo is literally the only personal care item I splurge on (I wash my face with baking soda and clean my house with baking soda & vinegar to save money, seriously) and it will last me like 5-6 months. This is also after $9 in coupons, sigh.

Sunday: $20 for dinner; leftovers form the basis of my breakfast and lunch today.

Total: $158, without any groceries, really? Yowch. I gotta curb the restaurant spending (my mint.com budgets agree).

This weekend I also made myself a Google doc with all my debts and amortization schedules and extra payments I plan to make and savings goals, applying the snowball principle (when I pay off my car, that extra goes towards the loan for my house AC/heater, and after that it goes towards saving for a new car, and then towards my mortgage), and now I’m feeling really excited about paying down my debts. Awesome! Now to live more frugally so I can also save more at the same time.

@Jenn@twitter I love spreadsheets, they make paying down debt much more fun!

ThatJenn (#916)

@backstagebethy Spreadsheets make EVERYTHING more fun.

My dude misheard me when I said I made a spreadsheet for paying down my car and thought I said I made a spreadsheet to hang on my car… I’mma let my nerd flag fly!

Marzipan (#1,194)

@Jenn@twitter This is only tangentially related, but I signed up for Mint yesterday, and was categorizing stuff, and did not know what to put my birth control under ($30 a month! I know! what do other people pay?). It felt wrong/unfair to have it go under, say, personal care. It looks frivolous. health and fitness also seems weird? I should just make a new tag ‘cheaper than a baby’.

ThatJenn (#916)

@Marzipan I very much approve of this tag!

I’ve got all kinds of custom tags because I love categorizing things and disagree with many of Mint’s defaults (like: I think books should go under my entertainment budget), but I’m trying to figure out if there’s a good way to set rules so all transactions marked a certain way get tagged the way I like (my primary bank, USAA, has this feature and I like it). But then again, the process of manually reviewing every few days is really good for me, so I should just suck it up.

madrassoup (#929)

$50 to check our bags at airport on the way home
$20 on a metro card
$20 on brunch
$lots not spent because various people offered to treat me for no good reason

Total: $90

Jellybish (#560)

Oh god, so much. But reading this post has given me the courage to read my hotel receipt, and it’s not as bad as I imagined. (Husband wanted a vacation, I wanted to not spend money on a vacation. I gave in because I found a great deal on a nice hotel and I’m glad we went).

A ha ha ha. $260 on an air conditioner (incl. extended warranty thingy), plus $10 for an extension cord because the cord was FOUR INCHES too short. $17 on brunch, $18 on groceries, $15 at CVS on meds and sundries, and $5 on a fancypants root beer float at an ice cream place.

Worth it, though, to not sob my way through the next heatwave.

alpacasloth (#108)

I spent very little this weekend. I think this is the least amount of money I’ve spent on a weekend in… forever?

$4.30 at Ace Hardware for a shower drain grate thing
$5.36 at Home Depot on Drano
Total: $9.66

We had a lot of groceries so I made food, did chores, and the only time we ate out my boyfriend paid. My parents came over and brought us things like cake and donuts and avocados, and they helped us do stuff around the house like un-clog the shower and other things I would normally have to pay people to help me with. I spent the rest of the weekend doing chores so no money spent on fun stuff. I needed a no-spend weekend because I’m going to SF in two weeks for a bachelorette party and there’s goes all my $$$.

ATF@twitter (#1,471)

I had a weird weekend. Friday night date with le manfriend consisting of movie (Beasts of the Southern Wild) and dinner at trendy new restaurant. He paid to be nice, so $0 for me.

Saturday – bought new underwear (6 pairs, $32), 2lbs coffee & wasabi peas ($23), take out chinese for dinner ($18), bagel and cream cheese ($3), juice drink ($2), and picked up prescriptions ($35). Saturday total: $113

Sunday – $15 at market for fruit/chips/cookies for beach day with friends, $5 to help pay for parking at said beach, $35 to park at Red Sox game. Sunday total: $50

Weekend total – $163. So much for not spending any money this weekend. And I didn’t even buy any groceries for this week.

But at least the spending was largely necessary – the parking was so my dad wouldn’t have to deal with standing on the T with his back, the coffee was to make my own iced coffee (I had some this morning!) which will save me money in the long run, the prescriptions are what they are and needed, and trust when I say I really needed new underwear. The only things I didn’t really need were the take out chinese and bagel/juice. Ah, well.

selenana (#673)

Friday: $0. Came home and crashed out after work.
Saturday: Puppy adoption event. ¥250 for a drink and snack. 1330 for pizza later.
Sunday. Made oatmeal cookies to bring to a brunch party (starting at 2 p.m.). 480 for roundtrip train fare. 300 on photocopies of flyers for an upcoming event I’m hosting.
Altogether cheap weekend. Total of ¥2360.

Megano! (#124)

I think I spent about $40-$50 on Friday for a few groceries and lunch/dinner at a burger place, and then I didn’t spend anything else because I stayed at home and playing Skyrim and watched Deadwood all weekend. Oh and I made rice krispie squares, that was like, most of the reason for the grocery trip.

LizF (#1,399)

Friday

25$ (including tip) Fancy burger and a cocktail at dinner with friends
3$ Ice cream after dinner
18$ Weekly T pass

Saturday

$14.41 (including tip) for lunch delivery of Mexican food
0$ sushi dinner date with my boyfriend because he paid

Sunday

$7 My third of two six packs of beer for an afternoon of food and scifi with friends
$9 A ticket to see Magic Mike. (This movie was priceless.)

Total: $76.41 which could have been reduced if I had abstained from expensive booze this weekend. I also started pricing out my cross country move this weekend which seems dauntingly expensive so my spending will decrease.

I was doing so well this weekend until Sunday evening.

Friday: $6 on TTC fare, $6 on a drink at the bar, $5 on post bar snacks = $17

Saturday: $6 on pizza, $6 on a loaf of bread and jam to start making PB&J sandwiches for breakfast in the morning (I am terrible and usually buy breakfast AND lunch at work – baby steps here)
$3 car wash = $15

Sunday: post baseball appetizers and made a terrible decision to go in on a pitcher with some people even though i was driving and did not want to drink very much. ended up paying for the whole pitcher as nobody else would step up to it/had cash left to pay for it. took my expected expenditure of $15 including tip (food is half off for the bball team) to $30 including tip. Lame.

=$62. not bad but I really didn’t want to touch that last 20 in my wallet so that was annoying.

wallrock (#1,003)

Friday: I got off work early and went grocery shopping ($48) and stocked up for the week. Later than evening I went out to see a few local music acts as part of the Lost City Music Fest. I bought an all-access wristband ($15) and ended up seeing four bands at three venues, paying $1 to park since it was just under an hour at the ramp before I hit up the next spot. I had dinner at home and bought four beers ($20) over the course of the night.

Saturday: I made breakfast and enjoyed the break in the heat by sitting outside for most all of the morning. I’d planned on going out to more Lost City shows that afternoon & evening but I got a call from a friend inviting me out to Moonrise Kingdom later that night. I went over to his place and picked up some beer ($23) and hung out out on his deck for a few hours. His wife was running late so he and I went to dinner ourselves. We got sushi and he picked up the tab, and since we had time before meeting up with his wife we hit up a brewpub next to the theater. I paid for the first round ($10) and he got the second. When we got to the movie theater I paid for all three of us ($42).

Sunday: I got coffee and a banana ($3 w/ tip) on my way down to my parents, and I also picked up a Sunday Trib ($3) for my father. That afternoon I went golfing with my father and later got dinner. He insisted on paying for everything and I didn’t fight him too much over it. On my way home I gassed up my car and got a car wash as well ($41).

p.s. i like the idea of labelling a blind spending weekend, especially because it implies this should be an outlier situation and not the norm.

Kate (#1,408)

It was a weirdly low-cost weekend for me.

Friday

I didn’t spend anything, because I went home from work early (at 5 PM!) with a terrible headache and slept for three hours, then my boyfriend made me dinner.

Saturday

Spent the day lounging around the house alone which I enjoyed very much. Went out for Thai w/boyfriend, $40.

Sunday

$6 worth of subway fare plus $60 at a fancier grocery store than usual. Then $12 at the regular grocery store for cat food because of COURSE the fancier store didn’t carry her food of choice.

I miss Logan’s weekend spending recaps because she spends money like I do. LOGAN COME BACK.

While I’ve been spending too much in general recently, this weekend was not too bad. Spent a total of $70 on groceries and liquor at the store. $15 on burgers and fries for a friend and myself on Saturday afternoon. I dragged the boy to Ihop late on Saturday and spent $25 on the two of us. And my credit card $25 payment just posted as well.

wearitcounts (#772)

i think i do this thing where i’m sure i haven’t spent very much because i didn’t even go out this weekend, really! and then i mentally add it all up and realize that isn’t true at all.

friday – $18 on groceries, part essential stuff and part to make this new recipe i call kitchen sink casserole, which was delicious and lasted me all weekend. $32 at liquor store.
saturday – $10 on a bottle of wine to bring to my friend’s house for her birthday.
sunday – i went out on my friend’s boat, where the booze was free (yay!) because i’d left the better part of a 12-pack in the cooler the last time i was there (july 4). i threw her $20 for gas and incidentals, since she’s always driving us around in her 1980 seaway. then $32 (way too much) on chinese takeout for dinner (it was too darn hot to cook).

$112. i should have sucked it up and cooked last night.

bgprincipessa (#699)

@wearitcounts Duh, recipe for the casserole please.

wearitcounts (#772)

@bgprincipessa haha, no problem! i got a pound of grass fed ground beef, mixed that with shallots, teriyaki sauce, sriracha and worcestershire, let marinate for an hour. cooked that over med-hi til brown, added a cup of brown rice. then i basically roasted every kind of vegetable i had on hand (brussels sprouts, red onion, jalapeno peppers, baby zucchini) in olive oil, salt and pepper. threw the beef/rice mixture in with the veggies, topped with parm/romano cheese and put back in oven til it got crispy brown on top. SO GOOD.

bgprincipessa (#699)

@wearitcounts SERIOUSLY kitchen sink. Brussels sprouts? Jalapenos? This is random and awesome. I need to make this.

wearitcounts (#772)

@bgprincipessa very random. it was one of those i-have-these-eight-things-in-my-fridge-and-i’m-craving-red-meat-what-can-i-make? moments. you know. one of those. make it! it was very awesome.

frushka (#1,207)

Friday: $0, because my boyfriend’s brother was in town and treated us to a dinner that neither of us could have ever afforded. It was his way of saying thanks for letting him sleep on the couch, and it was very very appreciated.

Saturday: $11 on coffee for the three of us. We went to the beach all day with a big group of friends, and my boyfriend paid around $60 for snacks/beers for everyone to share. So later that night I treated him to dinner, which was around $25 including tip. Normally we would have cooked but we were so tired from the beach that we just ordered in.

Sunday: $17 for dim sum, which kept me full all day. We were a table of 13(!) so we may have overpaid just a little bit, but I’d rather overtip especially with such a large group on a Sunday afternoon. Then I spent about $10 at the grocery store to get ingredients for cucumber/goat cheese sandwiches and another $14 on pink champagne, both of which I brought to a friend’s house for a fancy dress party.

Total: $77, which is more than I spent in the last two weekends combined, but in my defense we hung out with friends all weekend and I’m happy to pay my share to enjoy others’ company.

mishaps (#65)

Friday: expensive, totally not-worth-it fancy eyebrow tweezing: $30, with tip. Drinks with friends at their offices at the end of the day, courtesy of The Man: $0.
Saturday: I went nuts at the Greenmarket. Let’s call it $40. Then another $15 in cleaning supplies at the local grocery (unrelated). Spent the rest of the day eating fruit and hiding from the sun.
Sunday: $1 for water before running in the park. $2 for bagel after running in the park. $10 for burrito later in the day when I was still ravenous. $6 in laundry (pre-paid).

Total: approximately $110. Not that bad, but pricey for a weekend I spent most of in heat prostration.

Mike, I don’t think you need to get anything for the fiance – it’s his prerogative to show off a bit for his intended – but you might spot him a drink the next time you’re out together.

wearitcounts (#772)

@mishaps i agree, and second the buy-him-a-drink-next-time idea.

muggles (#1,525)

I was in hardcore hibernation mode so I could stay within my weekly budget and still have fun at Comic-Con this week!

My noble plans were almost foiled when I remembered I have a birthday party for a good friend tonight… normally I would’ve spent too much ordering something online or in some funky little store on the gift. Instead, I spent the afternoon working on a little acrylic painting for her new house. Hopefully she thinks it is cool and not cheesy! But I think it’s cool.

Otherwise:
Friday — $0 for dinner, ’cause it was my boyfriend’s turn this week; $26 for midnight movie tickets, brought snacks from home
Saturday — $0 after costume-shopping and figuring out I could make a decent go at my costume with stuff I already had at home; $6 at 7/11 for Icee and snacks because it was stupid hot
Sunday — $29 for weekly groceries, including all my non-perishable supplies for Comic-Con snacks (because I’ll be damned if I’m spending an hour in line and $8 for stale nachos every day there)

I grabbed cash out for spending for the rest of the week, so hopefully that all works out!

hellonheels (#1,407)

Friday: $1 toward the tip at the bakery where my BF and I had breakfast; $32.36 on produce, beer, and bacon; $2.50 for renewal of my Eat Your Books subscription (awesome cookbook recipe index) = $35.86

Saturday: $3.75 on coffee from Phil’z, $10 tip at brunch (BF paid), $30.39 on various cold beverages, ingredients for a peach tart and macque choux for that night and braised pork shoulder Sunday = $44.14

Sunday: $3.70 for coffees; $3.20 on ciabatta rolls and cheese for breakfast sandwiches; $6.99 for this awesome Lebanese jalapeno and green olive cheese spread from my friendly neighborhood beer, bourbon, and hummus shop; and $15 toward more beer (it’s hard to keep enough in the house, honestly) = $28.89

Total = $108.89. Could be better, but I budget $200 a week for food, gas, and entertainment, and it’s my carpool buddy’s week to buy gas, so $90 till Friday is plenty.

Marzipan (#1,194)

went to New York, stayed Friday at a friends house in NJ: free delicious food from her incredibly-nice parents. free food, free lodging, free pie, bananagrams, and watched Wet Hot American Summer on netflix. completely great $0 night.
Saturday: went in on the Staten Island ferry, $30 lunch, $10 metro card $15 natural history museum $5 gelato $50 dinner, and $45 or so on drinks? Maybe more? I paid for dinner with my credit card and got cash from the people I went with, so that sort of muddles things. $150 is actually not awful for such a crazy, long day in the big apple. Oh, $5 at the ferry terminal for drunk snacks. I always forget that stuff.
Sunday: Trader Joes: $10 (look at that willpower! considering I never get to go to TJs, and I only bought one box of those ginger snaps, which I just want to Hoover into my mouth constantly).

not bad, considering it was sort of a blind spending weekend for me, too. PLUS! I already wrote her parents a thank you card, although it just now occurs to me I should have brought flowers or a bottle of wine or something originally. Oy.

ThatJenn (#916)

@Marzipan Host(ess) gifts confuse me, because I am never sure what to bring; I’d rather contact the host and ask what they need, but I guess that’s not quite the right etiquette? I don’t drink wine so I don’t trust my ability to pick good wine, and I am not a big fan of cut flowers (if I know the recipient likes them, great, but I don’t think they’re a good catch-all gift – I have personally never gotten flowers so I do not own a vase, for instance), and I really hate little useless gifts that take up space on shelves, so… I guess I’m a big sourpuss? I’m the kind of person who would give someone a nice reusable shopping bag, and I don’t think everyone would appreciate that, sadly.

TREAT YOURSELF 2012

I won a free makeover for Saturday morning and brought my mom – after which we felt so fancy we went out to lunch, courtesy of my dad’s just-got-paid credit card, which also generously bought each of us a pair of sale shoes. Having managed to pawn that frivolous $50 purchase onto someone else, I still spent $75.49 on another pair, reasoning that they’re very practical and will last me for years, plus I almost bought them months ago when they WEREN’T on sale.

Sunday I took the bus into and around San Francisco ($22+ cost covered by a free transit card a friend gave me), went to the de Young to see the Gaultier exhibit and saved $10 because general admission was free for Bank of America cardholders so thanks mandatory unemployment cc! but still paid $10 for the show and $8.63 on souvenirs, plunked down $15 on some sadly broccoli-scant pad see ew, and saw Beasts of the Southern Wild for $10.

I also spent $185.75 on Applecare for the next two years of my computer’s life, but considering I was expecting it to cost $250 I’m pretty pleased with the (spitefully applied, in my case) educational discount.

Total: $304.87, which is the most I’ve spent in ages — but I got a lot of long-term bang for that buck, and saved quite a bit due to various lucky breaks.

selenana (#673)

Fancy juice? Potted plant? Fancy cookies? Delicious fruit? Six-pack of microbrews. I live in the Land of Host/ess gifts, so always gotta bring SOMETHING. The shops make it easy for us though because they make one zillion things intended for this very purpose.

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