In Budgeting, Canada, Discussions, For Beginners, Money, Week of Money Diary

A Week of Money: Where I give myself a spending break and go over budget

Here are all of my Week of Money posts. I plan on doing this every week.

DAY ONE

5:01 a.m. — The electricity is already out at 5 a.m. when I go to get the bottle of milk because I suspect all the wires are buried underground and the heavy rainfall has severed a connection.

7:03 a.m. — My partner heads off to work and I make plans to take Baby Bun to playgroup with the electricity out.

7:39 a.m. — The power comes back on. I cancel said plans for playgroup because it seems like such a hassle to take him out in the rain. I settle in to work with headphones on.

8:39 a.m. — Out of the blue my partner comes home and scares the #%&#@% out of me because he forgot his laptop AND lunch, which screws up all of my plans to stay in and relax (he needs quiet to work).

8:42 a.m. — I hastily prepare to take Baby Bun to playgroup but decide to leave at his nap time to go get our passports done in the afternoon from this unexpected surprise.

11:03 a.m. — We’re home from playgroup, and I feed Baby Bun his lunch.

11:37 a.m. — Baby Bun and I play games on the bed which involve a lot of kissing and tickling. My partner goes out for a short jaunt to the grocery store to pick up some wine and bread for dinner.

1:01 p.m. — Baby Bun goes down for his nap and I go to read a little, lying down and relaxing.


1:06 p.m. — I get an email from a friend who suggests that maybe I’m feeling sick and dizzy because I’m a vegetarian and I don’t get enough iron. I guess with all my enthusiasm for a plant-based diet I somehow got branded as a vegan / vegetarian by people when really I am a flexitarian who enjoys eating vegan/vegetarian more often than not. I have to keep repeating this to people so often I am thinking of not bothering to say I made a “vegan/vegetarian” ______ the other day.

1:36 p.m. — My partner comes back and I go and get suited up for a rainy afternoon trek to the Passport office. It doesn’t help that after that little conversation with my friend, I am now craving a huge juicy burger or steak tartare.

2:04 p.m. — I get to the office and there are about 50 people ahead of me. This is how I felt when I was 5 numbers away from being called.

2:37 p.m. — My iPod dies. I spend the time in silence, thinking about the fact that if my partner went away for a business trip for a week the VERY FIRST THING I’d do is buy coriander and eat it the whole week. Isn’t that weird? I had to give it up eating it because it makes him so nauseous that he throws up, and all I can do now is crave it.

3:11 p.m. — I am pleasantly surprised it only took an hour. I get our old passports invalidated, and can expect the new ones in 2 weeks. Sweet! Not so sweet, is the $320 cost which I put on my credit card. Ouch.

3: 35 p.m. — I wander around in the underground mall before I decide it isn’t worth it to get soaked by the rain just to be out.

4:31 p.m. — I get home and greet Baby Bun happily, totally refreshed from my unexpected jaunt outside, toddler-free.

6:01 p.m. — My partner heads out to pick up some cheese from the market and Baby Bun and I stay in to clean. I vacuum the entire apartment (Baby Bun squeals and runs to the bedroom giggling at the sound of the vacuum) and I scrub the bathroom sink.

6:38 p.m. — My partner comes back and we have a nice dinner. He always makes something quick and we chat about the day. I feel a cold sore coming on and decide against salting it to make it go away faster.

7:42 p.m. — I do the dishes. It only takes me about 20 minutes and I leave it all to air dry overnight & I put them away (dried) in the morning. The next day, I usually do a second round of dishes before lunch & dry them before we have dinner.

8:28 p.m. — Bedtime.

Saved: $0

Spent: $0

DAY TWO

6:30 a.m. — Milk routine. Boring. But at least I feel completely refreshed having slept a SOLID night because Baby Bun was great last night.

7:08 a.m. — I make some pancakes for Baby Bun and myself, and stuff him full of it.

8:04 a.m. — I decide to take him out to the park again while my partner heads out to the grocery store. I FORGOT THE LIST AGAIN. Gah. I keep doing this. I make a note to do a Grocery List in my ToDo task app. Gah. We’ll do it tomorrow.

10:02 a.m. — We come back in, wash our hands, change clothes and I give him a good tickle on the bed while listening to podcasts. Right now, I am loving America’s Test Kitchen but it’s on hiatus.

11:18 a.m.— My partner comes home, puts all the groceries away, and starts on lunch.

11:38 a.m. — We all eat together.

12:11 p.m. — I kiss Baby Bun goodbye and head out early, leaving his father to get him down for his nap in half an hour.

12:23 p.m. — I take the metro to go downtown and hang out, walking around $2.25


1:15 p.m. — I am back home $2.25

[Same schedule; forgot to write the rest.. Oops!]

Saved: $0

Spent: $4.50

DAY THREE

5:02 a.m. — UGH. WHY. WHY DID I HAVE CHILDREN? I blearily get up and do the milk routine and try to collapse on the floor to nap until the sun comes up. I have zero recollection of what happened.

6:33 a.m. — My partner gets up to do yoga, and to start cooking. He’s super early for some reason today.

7:07 a.m. — I play with Baby Bun while chatting with my partner on the floor, and decide to repair my coat (the buttons keep falling off) while he plays on the bed.

7:47 a.m. — I get Baby Bun prepped to go to the grocery store, and re-check that I put in my calendar to give my partner a Grocery List next week.

8:15 a.m. — We are in the car, on the way there, singing “The Wheels on the Bus” with all the animals and fruits I can think of (FYI: the apple goes crunch crunch..)

8:54 a.m. — I pay for the groceries (all vegetables and fruits only) with a $20 bill, what are the odds it would have come out to such a neat amount? $19

9:29 a.m. — We are back home and I put away all the groceries.

10:01 a.m. — Baby Bun is hungry again already. I fend him off with a banana.

11:15 a.m. — We have a nice lunch together — pasta, cream and ham, which ends up giving me pimples the next day.. yay. Fun…Luckily I use my Paula’s Choice BHA9 serum (a real holy grail product) and it speeds up the healing and brings it to a head at least (yeah gross but it works)…

11:55 a.m. — I get Baby Bun down for his nap before my partner heads out for his errands.

1:09 p.m. — My partner comes home and I lie down on the bed watching videos on my side.

1:31 p.m. — Baby Bun wakes up from his nap sobbing from something or another and I ignore him (my partner can get him). Since his father got him and calmed him down, Baby Bun doesn’t even realize that I am hiding in the other room, on my side, watching a video quietly, so he plays with his father spelling words with the letters in between asking for snacks and seeing what he’ll score from Daddy versus Mommy.

https://www.savespendsplurge.com/parts-of-my-minimalist-home-apartment-baby-buns-toys-and-things/

I know this will work only once because the next time Daddy gets him, Baby Bun is going to search every room and blanket thoroughly to make sure I am not there first before deciding to play on his own or with his father.

My only safe spot now is the laundry room. He will NEVER look in there.

4:37 p.m. — Baby Bun finally realizes I am in the room hiding and comes in, happy with the thrilling discovery of his mother hiding in a room with a laptop watching videos peacefully underneath a blanket.

4:49 p.m. — We go to the park again until it’s time for dinnertime.

5:45 p.m. — We wrangle him home on the promises of a “yummy dinner” and he comes willingly, happy to eat.

6:22 p.m. — We settle down to a nice dinner (Baby Bun usually spends the time hassling his father for all of the bread before we get a chance to eat the properly prepared meal) along with a nice treat of a black olive fougasse:

7:11 p.m. — We’re done, and I foist Baby Bun off on his father so I can do the dishes.

7:43 p.m. — I finish up the dishes leisurely while watching videos.

8:02 p.m. — We all hang out on the bed together, half-chatting, half-dozing… his father full of a bottle of wine, Baby Bun excited from this burst of energy that ALL CHILDREN GET when it’s time for bedtime (it’s the “witching hour”, that parents know well), and I read a few more pages of my book.

8:45 p.m. — Baby Bun is finally in his pyjamas after much protesting and threats of not going to the park any more, and we’re all in bed now.

Saved: $0

Spent: $19

DAY FOUR

5:03 a.m. — WHEN WILL THE NIGHTMARE OF THIS CHILD WAKING SO EARLY BE OVER? I am starting to understand why this book “Go the #*$( to sleep” was written…..

When you’re up before the sun, that’s just bananas.

6:21 a.m. — My partner gets up and does yoga before leaving for work.

7:06 a.m. — We wave good-bye at the door and we settle into our day. I read a book while Baby Bun plays around me.

9:08 a.m. — I make 2 cups of brown rice for my meal instead of spaghetti to change it up. I don’t know how “pasta sauce” is going to taste on rice but…

9:39 a.m. — Baby Bun is hungry. I stuff him full of food while I eat my own lunch, and for some reason, feel the urge to eat dim sum.

10:32 a.m. — I check my budget and decide it is okay to eat it today as long as I am careful for the weekend spending (that is to say, not to spend any money at all and go to the library instead). We head out to a restaurant and I stuff him (and myself again). $23.09

1:05 p.m. — We arrive back home after I have been DESPERATELY singing songs and trying to get him NOT to nap in the car before we are in the apartment and quickly strip his clothes off, scrub his hands, and make him lie down for a nap. I did not plan this well.


1:41 p.m. — Baby Bun comes out asking to go to the potty.

2:45 p.m. — I am thinking that I really shouldn’t have binged on all that creamy pasta my partner made. My skin is terrible. I broke out all over. I have to eat better this week so that my skin clears up.

2:55 p.m. — Baby Bun comes out again. He doesn’t seem to have napped but… hey, maybe he’s reaching a stage where he doesn’t need to nap on a regular basis any more? *sobs* .. but at least while he was lying there trying to nap, I got a lot of quiet time. I am going to institute “Quiet Time” instead of “Nap” sometime in the next month if this No-Nap thing happens again. I grab him his milk.

3:05 p.m. — He has guzzled down the bottle and like a wino is asking for more. I tell him no (makes his belly sick), and I tempt him with a Park visit if he is quiet, behaves and let’s me do the dishes and clean up.

4:15 p.m. — We make it to the park and the apartment is clean with the dishes drying on the counter.

5:34 p.m. — We get home and play after a snack of an avocado. I get hungry and eat some vegetarian pasta again. I decide to add eggs to it for lunch the next day.

6:07 p.m. — Still pestering me for food. I sit him in his chair and make him peel 5 clementines. He sets all of his peels in a row, and I eat half of his work as a good Mommy should.

6:21 p.m. — DADDY!

7:49 p.m. — I do the dishes. I generally don’t like waking up to a sink full of dirty dishes but will let it slide if I am super lazy that night and no one is cooking tomorrow.

8:34 p.m. — Time for bed.

Saved: $0

Spent: $23.09

DAY FIVE

6:07 a.m. — He slept in? Yay.. -_-

7:09 a.m. — Baby Bun waves bye to his father.

8:11 a.m. — I make a green smoothie out of a banana, a box of spinach, two green apples, a spoonful of honey, and one avocado. I tell Baby Bun he can’t have it until he eats his lunch.

8:45 a.m. — I get an email from another mother asking if we want to do a playdate to go pet animals and I decline, because I am not a fan of petting zoos. A farm, why not, but a zoo? Hmm.

9:16 a.m. — Baby Bun asks for his lunch and I feed him while prepping my own. I add soft-boiled eggs to my lunch and love the results. Brown rice, vegetarian pasta and 2 eggs? It sounds so strange but I loved it.

10:30 a.m. — We both finish our lunches and I start on the dishes.

11:59 a.m. — Baby Bun goes down for his nap and drops off without a protest, having woken up so early.

1:15 p.m. — I check my budget while watching videos and decide to let myself spend no more than $50 over the $1700 budget I imposed for this month. I had to pay for my 10-year passport this month ($160) which is why it ate up my entire budget. I give myself a little more leeway, keeping in mind I may need to top up my metro card this month as well.

1:46 p.m. — Still watching more videos. YAY. LOVE ME SOME NAP TIME.

1:50 p.m. — I have recently turned my Instagram into a microblogging platform, so I post my second Money Tip. I have 8 more to go! More, if you find them interesting. 🙂

2:14 p.m. — Baby Bun wakes up and we cuddle.

2:16 p.m. — He gets his bottle and sucks it down. I check the weather and decide the sun is enough for me to suit up and take him out to the park to run around again in about an hour.

2:28 p.m. — I start cleaning up the apartment before we go to the park. I open the balcony door to check the weather to know how warm to dress.

5:15 p.m. — I get Baby Bun back from the park after dangling a clementine as a treat.

5:45 p.m. — DADDY! AND HE BROUGHT FOOD!

6:25 p.m. — Dinner. Baby Bun LOVES candied salmon, so he guzzles it down until he can’t put another bite in his mouth. I know we’re in for a good, solid night’s sleep when he is this stuffed. His belly is all puffed out…

7:35 p.m. — I decide to leave the dishes for the next morning. I can’t be bothered.

8:15 p.m. — I quickly squeezed in two more episodes (I am obsessed with this show and am almost up to date on Season 10 of The Big Bang Theory) and then go to bed with Baby Bun.

Saved: $0

Spent: $0

DAY SIX

3:24 a.m. — Why am I awake? Why am I not going back to sleep when I am so tired? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME.

4:05 a.m. — Still awake. Thinking about stuff. Random things I read as comments on blogs, blog posts.. OMG. I need to sleep.

4:25 a.m. — Finally.. dozing… offf….. YAAAAH!!!! Baby Bun squeals “Want red blanket!!!! REDDD BLANKETTTT!!!” and loses his #(%*#@% because Daddy covered him in a brown one instead of a red one. I quickly switch it.

7:10 a.m. — Baby Bun finally wakes up. He slept WELL last night even with his waking up. I guess I am so used to waking up at 3 a.m. from his squeals that I just woke up by accident.

8:41 a.m. — I am too hungry. Am eating my lunch and calling it brunch. Baby Bun wasn’t that hungry from the goooood stuffing we gave him the night before with salmon and finally finished his meal.

9:15 a.m. — While I am eating, I review my taxes to make sure everything is entered correctly. I can’t really finish any of it because my partner needs to enter his info. I spend the time Googling how to expense his playgroup (turns out it goes under daycare expenses) and make more tax notes to myself like how I need to pay into the QPIP but not the EI — that is voluntary.

9:41 a.m. — Just ate my lunch and in about 20 minutes will take Baby Bun out to the P-A-R-K after his belly settles down. Oh wait.. he can spell it now. :\

10:15 a.m. — I am going to run this child HARD so he naps well. I encourage him to be a kangaroo and a wild animal.

11:30 a.m. — We come back in, and I get him seated in his high chair with a bowl of pasta (he loooovvveeesss pasta).

12:30 p.m. — He finishes the whole thing. Yay!

12:45 p.m. — I order Baby Bun to go down for his nap and he complies.. probably because he knows that I promised there would be a park visit in the afternoon after his Nap & Milk only if Baby Bun behaves (he repeated that last part to me verbatim).

12:45 p.m. — I check on Baby Bun to see if he is finally snoozing. He looks up at me like a spooked animal and quickly pushes his head back down on the pillow, squeezes his eyes shut and fake snores at me… I try to stifle a laugh. This child will be forging my signature on his pre-school papers, I am sure.

http://imgur.com/gallery/OsHavVV

1:02 p.m. — I haven’t been reading much lately because I have been trying to finish the entire 10 seasons, but I’m almost done (3 weeks in, constant watching!). I dun care. I pop a few Werther’s caramels.

2:33 p.m. — Baby Bun is awake and I AM DONE ALL 10 SEASONS!!!! WOOOOO HOOOO!!! Now to start on this new series I discovered by Eugene & Dan Levy called Schitt’s Creek, a Canadian production and… pretty dang funny so far.

3:02 p.m. — I tell Baby Bun if he cleans up all of his toys and helps me put everything away, we’ll go to the park.

3:24 p.m. — After much “Oh so no PARK THEN?” … threats, he finally gets the place cleaned and all of his toys put away.

3:33 p.m. — In the park, trying to run his energy off.

5:09 p.m. — I see my partner’s car drive past the park and I get Baby Bun to slide down one more time before telling him we have to go home to Daddy.

6:16 p.m. — Dinner!

7:15 p.m. — DISHES! I really don’t like dirty dishes in the morning. Ruins my zen after drinking tea so much that I do my dishes AND THEN drink tea so that my day starts off right.

8:44 p.m. — Threats and Baby Bun finally sleeps with his head tucked into the crook of my curved body. He seems to have a sixth sense when I am not in the room because he wakes up 5 minutes after I leave.

Saved: $0

Spent: $0

DAY SEVEN

6:14 a.m. — He woke up twice last night screaming “SHOES”… then “SOCKS”.. at some ungodly hours. I have no idea, I didn’t bother checking when he screamed but I was in a deep REM. Zat’s all I know.

7:15 a.m. — No work for my partner today (holiday) so he’s decided to “finish” the apartment (work in progress since the day we moved in). This means I won’t get to leave Baby Bun and take off for the afternoon so I decide on a plan of action while drinking tea.

8:02 a.m. — Baby Bun and I head to the park.

9:11 a.m. — We get back. We’re kind of the only parents out there at that hour most of the time and I love it.

9:33 a.m. — I start to see that Baby Bun and I would be confined to ONE bedroom while dust flies all over the place, so I decide that after lunch we’ll take the bus downtown.

11:03 a.m. — We eat lunch (I eat lightly) and I stuff Baby Bun full with stew, oatmeal and the last of the creamy pasta. I tell him if he behaves we are going on the BUS!!! He is so excited he can’t sit still. I also make him clean the place before we go again and check my emails in the meantime.

11:34 a.m. — Finally waiting for the metro. Baby Bun is SO EXCITED. $2.25


12:32 p.m. — Baby Bun falls asleep on my chest and I shift him to his stroller. I kind of wish I got him in the stroller off the metro before he started napping but.. oh well. Luckily people are very sweet here in Montreal and EVERYONE offers to help me lug this toddler in a stroller up 3 flights of stairs. O_o I make it outside with the help of a nice young guy.

1:01 p.m. — I made a decision to try out Thai today, and as I get there, I realize it’s on the second floor. Gah.

1:05 p.m.— I lug the entire stroller with a sleeping 35lb toddler in it up 8 steps to try a new Thai restaurant (which I LOVED!!!) and sit down to a nice meal of Tom Kha Gai (omg so good) and Pad Thai (it is a standard meal I order to test out Thai restaurants but in the end, I find it too sweet even when it is perfectly made). $34

1:35 p.m. — I leave completely stuffed and so satisfied. The waitstaff very kindly helps me carry the stroller back down with the sleeping Baby Bun snoozing away. Tom Yum soup next time.

1:46 p.m. — I wander into a Shoppers Drug Mart and on the spur of the moment do my entire face. I try out the Stila perfecting concealer, smudge stick eyeliner and balm lipstick. I wipe off the lipstick, hating how orange-based the red I chose was (I am more of a MAC Cruella girl which is now discontinued so my next colour would be the Mac Dragon Girl), and regret the smudge eyeliner as well — I think I am starting to really lean towards liquid eyeliner instead of pencil. I like a very, very thin, fine line rather than a thick one.

2:02 p.m. — I wonder if I should wake him up. Nah. Let him sleep a bit more. Will give me time to walk around and browse things.

2:03 p.m.— In the meantime, I look for sunscreen. I read that sunscreen isn’t as effective if you keep it for a long period of time (chemical ones I believe), so I toss my sunscreen yearly and buy it new. I wasn’t planning on buying any sunscreen but as it’s getting warmer I need to protect him and myself and I do plan on going for walks & to the park a lot more this summer to save money.

2:14 p.m. After reading all the labels, scanning all the prices, calculating cost-per-unit and making sure none of the ones I chose have things like parabens in them, I finally choose the Ombrelle for Kids (this one has parabens in it, this is the one I found without parabens that happened to be on sale and had Finding Nemo on it).

2:15 p.m.— Just as I am about to leave with the sunscreen, I find one from Sun Thera 3 in SPF 100 (A Shoppers Drug Mart Brand) I had never even heard of until today, but the entire shelf was almost empty save for a few of these bottles. I guess everyone likes the brand.

https://www1.pharmaprix.ca/en/health-and-pharmacy/personal-care/skin-acne-care/details/057800073376

I know SPF 100 is overkill and you only really need SPF 30 at the most and just re-apply but I can’t help but buy the highest number.

I buy it because I can put it on my face in a pinch to “top up” my sunscreen every 2 hours, it is broad-spectrum, water-resistant and non-whitening. For that non-whitening part alone, it’s worth the money and is cheaper than the more expensive ones that promise to not make you look like a ghost (turns my skin purple..). $16.09

2:30 p.m. — OK he isn’t waking up, and 2 hours is wayyy over his nap time. I have to get him up. I gently stroke his arms and kiss him until he wakes up and then push him to the nearest cafe to find a washroom for him.

2:41 p.m. — I managed to find a Première Moisson and after getting cut off from the bathroom from a woman (I was too tired / polite to raise a ruckus), I get him in there.

2:50 p.m. — I buy him a treat of a mini croissant to eat, and I don’t take anything because I am stuffed and feel guilty about spending over $50 today. I warn him that with this fun little outing, he can’t cry or scream when we go to cut his hair this week (we do it at home with a pair of trimmers). $0.95

3:10 p.m. — We get back on the metro and Baby Bun is super excited again. $2.25

4:01 p.m. — We arrive at the park and I decide to let him run around until 5 p.m. or so which will give my partner enough time to finish working, get cleaned up, clean up the dusty room and have time to eat dinner together.

5:15 p.m. — I get Baby Bun home on the promise of a bottle of fresh goat milk which he loves.

5:20 p.m. — My partner is still in the bedroom working but hears us come in and realizes he has to stop or else it will end too late and we’ll all be cranky. He didn’t get the bathroom done, to his regret so it means this entire weekend will not be Toddler-Free for me. I’ll have to take Baby Bun out for long periods of time every day to give him peace and quiet to work and not worry about a toddler.

6:25 p.m. — We have a quick dinner of cheese and bread. Nothing special.

7:15 p.m. — I check my note and finally remember to write out the Grocery List. I add butter and flour in there for the cake I plan on making this week with my nicely overripe bananas.

8:15 p.m. — My partner looks exhausted but SO AM I from toddler-wrangling. He gamely gets up to get him ready for bed and then crashes.

Saved: $0

Spent: $55.54

THOUGHTS

Whoa. Definitely blew the $1700 budget this week. I still have another week to go and have to keep Baby Bun out of the apartment so that my partner can work in peace.

I decide to increase my overage by $100 to a total $1800 spend this month, but vow not to make it a habit.

WANT TO READ MORE?

Here are all of my previous Week of Money posts.


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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

I got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K (savings rate = 85%). I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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