I shop at the same grocery store, about once or twice a week. My grocery expenses tend to fluctuate, based on whether I need bigger ticket items or not (meats, shampoo, etc) or if I'm riding my bike there or driving. So I tallied up my expenses from April and divided them by four, giving me an average of $48 per week. That seems about right.
My 1 thing is to write a note to my Aunt, who sent me a card a few weeks ago. Been putting it off for a while, but want to respond soon. Congrats on the new side-job, Logan! That extra $500 cushion will make you feel so good. :)
I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Bank of America now has cash-back "ameri-deals" through their DEBIT card, which I use almost exclusively. All you have to do is sign into your BofA account and "add" deals you're interested in, then spend as you normally do. Recently, I got $5 back from using my debit card at Starbucks, and another $3 back on buying a pie at Dangerously Delicious (I think it's cool that they offer local deals). Check it out if you're a BofA debit user!
@Jake Reinhardt That reminds me of something Tom Hanks said in You've Got Mail: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1UvOXW0etnw
46% post-tax for my tiny one bedroom in DC. I'm adamant about my savings methods, so another 22% goes towards that (retirement funds, stocks, mutual funds, cash savings accounts, etc). While I can handle the bare minimum on my salary alone, I babysit on the side so I don't feel like I'm living paycheck to paycheck. I imagine those percentages will change when (a) I don't want to babysit on the weekends anymore and (b) my student loans kick in (I'm currently in grad school, so not technically in repayment just yet, but still throw some money at them). I'm also hoping that (c) I'll get a raise within the next 12 months.
Dude. What I wouldn’t give to be in your shoes. I think you’re lucky that you CAN afford that and still have 60% of your paycheck leftover. And if down the road you really can’t make ends meet, you can always get a roommate (part-time, short-term, or full-time, etc) — all of your choosing! It’s like you have a built-in emergency plan. I just tallied up my income vs. rent ratio, and it turns out I sink 46% of my take-home pay into my small one-bedroom in DC. That’s so much! But — I’ve been here over a year and I have no regrets. My 403(b) contributions, Roth IRA, and other various savings methods total close to 22%, so, I, too, only wind up with a meager amount of money each month to spend on debt, food, internet, incidentals, etc. It’s not a lot, so I wind up babysitting so I can occasionally do cool things: like buy a fancy meal sometimes, or go out of town for a while, or plunk down a big amount towards those student loans. I know that one day I’m going to feel way too old to be a babysitter, but for now it works. And hopefully by the time I feel too old for it, I’ll have sufficiently changed my debt situations and spending habits so that I won’t feel like I “need” to be babysitting that much anyway — and yeah, hopefully I’ll be making a higher salary by that point, too.
@Caitlin with a C congrats! And I've recently gotten alot of recommendations for shows at Synetic, so I'll have to check one out some time.
I decided to skip my trip to NYC, in favor of extra sleep and extra time to read, write, and lounge around (it rained on and off here in DC). I also exercised a lot and I only spent $30.33 on groceries because that's all I could fit in my backpack (I rode my bike to Safeway), so I'll have to go back there tonight for some things I didn't have room for (paper towels, etc). I also made $158 in babysitting this weekend. Not bad.
@KingCash I want to check out the Ballet Russes show, too! I'm happy to hear you thought it was cool.
@Caitlin with a C yeah, I went last year -- for some reason, I thought that happened last weekend and I'd missed it already. Hmm.. @annecara No, neither the bus tickets nor the Frieze ticket are refundable. Also, the bus service is through GoToBus, which I didn't realize until after checking out that it has received only very poor reviews. I guess my major hesitation with going is that the bus just might not show? And either I'm stranded in DC or NY. It's kind of outrageous that they don't offer refunds.