@deathcabforcutes I'm a big proponent of "Treat Yo Self," but you do have a good point.
I'm trying to stick to a budget because the holiday season is upon us. I'm probably going to go home after work and do nothing. I don't get trick-or-treaters because I live in a small apartment building -- no kids in the building, and the ones in the neighborhood tend to stick to the single-family homes a few blocks away. I miss having trick-or-treaters. :( Tomorrow I have to take my car in for service, but it's free. Maybe I'll stop and get coffee before or after the appointment because it's at 8 a.m. (the only time they could schedule me, ugh). $3 if I do that. Otherwise, I'm planning on laying low this weekend, catching up on my DVR and maybe starting "Transparent." Let's say $10, on the chance I get that coffee and maybe have to stop at the store for something.
I pack my lunch every day. Maybe two to three times a month, I'll randomly go to Panera or Chipotle for something different, but I can't imagine spending $100 a month on lunch. Eating lunch out every day would be a disaster for both my wallet and my health.
I estimated $60. Friday, I spent $9 to ship a package and $28 on gas. It was a rough week -- I was sick for most of it -- so I treated myself to Chipotle after work ($7). Saturday, I spent most of the day at home. I was beginning to feel better and I started getting antsy being cooped up in my apartment, so I went to Starbucks ($2) and stopped at the grocery store ($12). Two of my friends came over that evening to keep me company during the Blackhawks game. Yesterday I just hung out at home and resisted the urge to order food on GrubHub ($0). Total: $58, right on target.
I have a cold, so this weekend I probably won't be doing much. I had plans for tomorrow night, but I might back out of them to stay home and rest. As far as spending, this morning I spent $3 at Panera and I have to mail a package on my lunch break ($7?). I'm not sure if I'll stop at Trader Joe's after work, but if I do, it'll be about $15 because I'm only out of a few things. Oh, editing to add that I forgot about getting gas. That will be $25-30. I'll estimate $60 for the weekend.
I didn't do an official estimate here on Friday because I was off and had a busy morning, but I estimated $300. I wanted to get a new winter coat this weekend. Macy's had a really good sale, so I ordered a coat online ($199). I'm hoping it works out and I don't have to return it. I know my sizing in that brand, so it should fit. Friday morning, I went to watch the Blackhawks practice ($0; if you're in Chicago, they have practices that are open to the public, but they're usually on weekday mornings). After that, I went to Trader Joe's ($60) and met up with a friend and her mom for a late lunch ($14). I hung out at my friend's place that night watching hockey ($0). Saturday, I didn't go anywhere or do anything. I caught up on my DVR, did laundry, and called my grandma. Yesterday, I had to make a Target run ($20) and went over to a friend's place for dinner ($0). Total: $293. I can't believe I actually stuck to my estimate.
Oprah isn't the wealthiest woman in Illinois because she doesn't live here anymore and hasn't for a while. I think she lives in California now.
@Carly Hirsh@facebook I think standard is 15-20%, and that you should tip every time. I tip 20% because I see my stylist every couple of months and she does an outstanding job. We also have great chats when I'm there. I also know she's in a tough financial situation and works two jobs. But even if she weren't experiencing financial difficulty, I'd still tip 20%.
@ronswansonluva I've noticed lately that Square is becoming more popular, and several businesses that used to be cash-only are now using Square.
Chicago seems to have more cash-only businesses than anywhere else. I just check out Yelp before I go to a new restaurant/bar/coffee shop to see if they don't take cards, and then I plan accordingly and stop at an ATM ahead of time. It's kind of a pain since I rely on my debit card for everything, but I understand why some businesses do cash-only (see comment above mine).