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

Week of Money: Where I drop $300 on a meal for the family

DAY ONE

??:?? — Tired. He is sniffling and telling me his nose is bleeding. I don’t see any blood when I use a napkin, but then 30 seconds later, when he sits up, I see dark red spots in the moonlight, he must have been swallowing back the blood inside his nasal cavity. I am VERY tired, but I get up and help stop his nosebleed. He wants to know what time it is and I tell him it is too early, FOR SURE.

7:48 a.m. — WHOA. We woke up late! We definitely slept in, and I feel somewhat refreshed, but still tired from last night’s wakeup.

7:57 a.m. — He eats his pasta, and gets Daddy to do things for him “Mommy, Call Daddy!” because Mommy is busy (it’s true). I am happy it is sinking in, and he is finally asking his father for things. I get dressed.

8:08 a.m. — I call the orthodontist and make an emergency appointment for just before lunch. I wish it was sooner because I am hungry and want to eat, but I will suck it up.

8:15 a.m. — I head off to drop him at daycare. They’re trying to start this weekly art program thing, but apparently it isn’t free as part of the daycare, I would have to pay an extra $250. I side eye her. I am going to let this go on for free but then if they ask for money, no thanks. I didn’t save all my money and scrimp on other areas in my life just to waste it on these activities that SHOULD Be part of daycare. Besides, he can do all the art he wants for FREE when we are on vacation with my mother who loves this stuff.

8:16 a.m. — Picture this sweet little baby boy telling me: “Oh Mommy! That looks heavy. Let me carry that package for you. I am a good helper.” OMG. My dreams have come true. *sob* I am encouraging him in this regard to think of others and help.

8:55 a.m. — I drop a package to Canada Post – sold another coat last night.

9:13 a.m. — Now I am stuck behind a garbage truck. Not really going to move. After 10 minutes, I call the building concierge and tell him we’re stuck – is it okay if he can come see what is happening? I don’t mind waiting but I want to know how long, as I have conference calls I was hoping to be in the apartment  for, and not in the car.

9:37 a.m. — I make a matcha tea. Apparently my call got cancelled in the morning. Sweet. I work on emails.


10:25 a.m. — I head off to my appointment, I’ll be in the car the whole time while on the call.

12:31 p.m. — Before and my appointment – FIXED! — I am on calls. $220

1:15 p.m. — I am on calls on the way to get lunch, and I decide to treat myself to a vegan burger. Today has been a bit harrowing with so much happening at work. $10.80

1:40 p.m. — On the way home, on a call. The minute I am in the door, I log back in and work.

4:03 p.m. — I log off work and shower, and curl my hair.

4:40 p.m. — I pick up Little Bun. He is so happy to see me, and waves his sea turtle artwork at me. It looks pretty good, I must say, and he seemed to enjoy it, but I am not shelling out $250 for this. We can do this at home, or in Toronto with grandma.

5:16 p.m. — After his milk, he IS SO GOOD and in such a good mood today, so full of energy and sunshine. He helps me put away all the laundry, his lunch boxes for washing, and organizing other things.

5:37 p.m. — I do all the dishes and dry and put them away.

6:34 p.m. — I sit down and start doing my taxes. It is the only time I have after work. I always do my corporate taxes first, and then figure out how much I will take in dividends. I need to figure out how much I need this year, and then just take the bare minimum.

7:11 p.m. — Have to take a break, Little Bun is antsy and basically bouncing off the walls annoying my partner. *sigh* I get him to practice some Greek letters:

7:56 p.m. — I go back to taxes.

9:37 p.m. — Time for bed.

Spent: $230.80

DAY TWO

??:?? — I wake up, kind of tired. But I can’t seem to sleep any more. Why do I never feel refreshed?

7:23 a.m. — I get Little Bun up and ready for daycare. I give him milk, then my partner takes over for the pasta feeding for breakfast, and prepping his lunch while I wash my face and get dressed.

8:00 a.m. — I drop him off, head home, get on a call immediately because I have no time, and I sit in the car.

9:27 a.m. — I drive back home but get stuck in front of my driveway because the snowplows (admirably, I am not mad) are removing all the snow and the mountains that are causing lanes to get squeezed tighter and tighter, and it makes it worse for parking AND driving on the same street. Lots of honking happened this morning and yesterday from angry people. I hop on another call while I wait, and sit in the parking lot.

12:17 p.m. — Lunchtime. This whole day was a blur.

4:47 p.m. — OMG HOW IT IS ALREADY FOUR. I am rushing out the door to get him. I was so caught up in working.

5:05 p.m. — Little Bun is BOUNCING off the walls he is so excited he is going to a restaurant. I hustle him into the house and in a span of 30 minutes do the following:

  • get him to take his lunch bag out and remove all the boxes, and stack them up beside to do the dishes
  • get him to feed himself a small bowl of vegetable stew
  • get him to put away all the dishes and bowls nicely
  • I do all the dishes in the meantime
  • vacuum quickly
  • cut his hair – it is getting too long in the back and on the sides
  • do laundry and put it away
  • washed my face and redid my makeup – it was starting to flake off (dry skin, plus I am exfoliating with retinol that tends to flake your skin to reveal fresh skin underneath)

(HE WAS SO GOOD! He is even more autonomous than before and proudly told me: Mommy I can feed myself and put everything away all by myself now!)

5:45 p.m. — We moved like Tasmanian devils, and we are done so far ahead of schedule, that I take him to go check the mail.

6:15 p.m. — We leave, and are super SUPER early

6:18 p.m. — I sit in the car, log in and work, and answer messages on Instagram (he doesn’t want to go out and walk around in the freezing cold, so we hang out in the car, parked in the perfect spot across from the restaurant).

6:42 p.m. — I get a call from the restaurant. Turns out I made it for 6:30 without thinking (that is my normal dinner time) instead of 7:30! OOPS. They change it immediately for me. I couldn’t go earlier because my partner’s school ends at 7 and he couldn’t be there until at least 7:15, so I made it 7:30 (or so I thought) to be sure.

7:02 p.m. — Little Bun starts wiggling in the chair – “I need to pee!” I pay for parking and quickly hustle him out of the far. $5.28

7:30 p.m. — The meal was pretty good. My partner true to form, said he could make everything there except my dish (they both took boring pasta dishes), but the desserts were beyond. He could not have done those desserts for sure. For the 3 of us, we end up paying a lot. Little Bun behaved as well as a 5-year old could behave without toys or things. He used my tissue box as a “car”, he tried to shock me with static electricity, he played with the forks, the chairs….. and was very happy about all the food and dessert coming out.

What we ate:

Foccacia bread freshly baked with red peppers, olives.. herbs…

Clams pasta, a bit spicy — my partner was not a fan because he didn’t want a spicy pasta.

Little Bun took the carbonara with cream, bacon and truffles…

I took the vegetarian option (but I will confess I took bites of everyone else’s plate because I am paying LOL .. and my partner is not a sharer but he was more open this time around), and I am trying to stick to a vegetarian-only option as meals. I think my dish was the best because it was not super salty and the most flavourful. I love eating vegetarian at these higher end places, they’re done so well.

For dessert, my partner had the melting chocolate fondant with a caramel ice cream (DELISH)… and my favourite if I didn’t want to try other desserts. I took a bite too.


Little Bun took the chestnut cream cake thing and loved it. He basically shoveled it into his mouth. I took a bite too but left most of it for him because I love my baby. Haha…

I took this hazelnut cream thing with a kind of lightly-sweet cake on top that wasn’t too sweet, soft, almost like a bread. I fed Little Bun a few bites of it because I love him so.

8:55 p.m. — Funny story, as the waiter came by with the bill, he was heading over to hand it to my partner, and I wave to him to give it to me instead. The look on his face for a split second was surprised shock. LOL … $286.98

9:47 p.m. — We head home, and then Little Bun starts getting overtired (oops).. and we head to bed as he is crying and upset. We shouldn’t have waited so long. Next time, we need a slightly earlier dinner.

Spent: $296.26

DAY THREE

7:59 a.m. — We wake up “late” and I get Little Bun some milk, then start getting ready as my partner gets his lunch ready for daycare, and feeds him pasta.

9:30 a.m. — On a call, a colleague (I know him well enough), mentions that I should ALSO probably be on this 2-hour call he is invited to. I text him on the side: I Hate You … because I was trying to NOT be invited to such long, stupid, pointless meetings. I know what has to get done, and I don’t want to be in a 2-hour meeting talking about it and my feelings on the project. This notebook basically sums up my feelings about meetings longer than half an hour:

12:15 p.m. — Lunchtime. I watch a very funny comedian from France – Gad Elmaleh. Here’s an example of his work:

1:09 p.m. — Back to work.

4:41 p.m. — I head off to pick up Little Bun at 5. I tried to do 4:30 before but it is just too short between work and logging off, getting dressed, etc.

5:16 p.m. — Home, we managed to grab my partner walking back from the bus stop, it is nice to give him a warm ride back in.

6:12 p.m. — I feed him soup, we play Hide and Seek, then these new apps by AvoKiddo.. to be honest, they talk a big game about it being about physics and science and all that, but really it is just a cute, fun video game with logic on how to get one character moving from one area to a next. It does teach kids logic, problem-solving etc, but it isn’t exactly Mensa. “Educational app” is stretching it, in my books and educational-washing. This is just a game but it is fun, and Little Bun needs fun in his life as well, as I had when I was a little girl.

7:40 p.m. — He is scratching a lot, and it wasn’t until later in the week that I connect the two and realize maybe what he ate at dinner triggered an allergic reaction.

9:22 p.m. — Time for bed. I am exhausted. He is refusing to brush his teeth because he is overtired, but he is going to pay for it tomorrow because he won’t get yoghurt to eat.

Spent: $0

DAY FOUR

7:00 a.m. — Little Bun wakes up and tells me: Mommy.. I had a dream that I couldn’t find you! You were nowhere! And I had to go with Daddy to look for clues… (I hope it wasn’t a nightmare but just a finding expedition). I snuggle his little boy warmth.

7:59 a.m. — I make tea, and get ready for work. As I am doing it, he asks me for a banana. I try to foist it off on my partner “go ask Daddy, he is the other adult here“… but he wants ME to specifically pick out the banana and peel it. I give in. You have to pick your battles and this is not a big one to fight for.

8:08 a.m. — I start laundry before I leave the house and instruct Little Bun to get Daddy to help him put the towels in the dryer, then take them out when it is done and fold them for me while I am at work. I am slowly passing off tasks to him that he can handle and feel like a little responsible grownup doing so.

8:20 a.m. — I pick up a matcha green tea at Starbucks and as I drink the grassy, bitter herb-y notes, I realize how much I hate it there. The matcha they use is of low quality (you can taste it), and it is only because I missed my matcha this morning (we had no more milk left), that I wanted to go out and get one instead of a sugary Chai Latte. Have to remember to never buy this matcha at Starbucks again. I miss my high quality creamy matcha. $5.27

12:17 p.m. — I work nonstop until lunch (I am so focused, my colleagues rib me about it, like I am a robot), and am starving when my colleague finally comes out of a meeting and we go to lunch. He teases me because I barely go into the office and I only show up weekly, if that. 😛 I call it job perks of not giving a F.

1:12 p.m. — After lunch, back to work.

4:05 p.m. — I leave a bit early to go pick up my credit card and realize just how much I hate going to the bank in person. This one is in a poorer area, which doesn’t bother me, but as a result, it is dark, it smells (this very odd, sewage/mildew/food court mix), and the teller takes TWENTY MINUTES to verify it is me even with ID, before handing over the new credit card. The card has a promotional 10% cashback up to a $2000 spend (another free $200), and I plan on using it with PayTM to pay my taxes this year. They charge a 1.75% credit card usage fee but that will be covered in the 10% in cash I will get back, plus I will get PayTM points and redeem it towards Starbucks gift cards. Otherwise, I can’t use credit cards any other way to pay for my housing tax and utility bills.

4:27 p.m. — I activate the card and try to reset the PIN in the car but they end up being super unclear and should have told me – to set a personal PIN you MUST use an ATM, you cannot do it over the phone. Instead they beat around the bush for 5 minutes before I realize what they are saying to me. I hate it when companies don’t use plain speak and try to be courteous, which only just confuses me – are you saying yes or no? I guess they don’t want to tell you “No” it can’t be done, but you should if …. it can’t be done!

4:31 p.m. — She also tries to sell me on a protection plan. $0.99 for every $100 in an unpaid balance. LOL… Are you kidding me? She tells me if I clear the balance every month then it is $0 I pay. I am not taking ANY CHANCES that I will get dinged with a fee for a service I don’t want to use and never want to use. I tell her I don’t need it. I repeat again I don’t want it. I tell her again I don’t need it. They are SO PUSHY but I am not giving in. I keep repeating: NO THANKS. I know I sound rude AF but if you don’t take “No” for an answer the first or second or SEVENTH time around, it means something is wrong with you, not me.

4:39 p.m. — Great. A truck broke down, a wheel came right off the axle at the ONLY intersection leading to my home. LOL.

5:14 p.m. — Home “late”. VERY late. I apologize to Little Bun who comes running towards me, I can see the anguish in his eyes. He was waiting for me to come home by 16:00 and I was late, he was wondering where I was. I soothe him and tell him I had to go to the bank and I got stuck in traffic (truth), and a big truck’s wheel had broken off RIGHT at the intersection, blocking one of the only two lanes to get to my place which delayed me even more.

5:40 p.m. — Awww.. they made pizza! That is so cute. I kiss and thank him. I have one just for me! He climbs up onto his chair and eagerly watches me cut it. He announces: Mommy you can’t eat it all! … And I reply back: No I cannot, I have to save it for later. And I eat half of it, and save the other half for tomorrow. He nods in agreement. “It is too much for your belly!

6:34 p.m. — We play hide and go seek after dishes. He is still scratching A LOT.

7:13 p.m. — I finally set up him with the iPad again but read my book in the bedroom beside him.

8:34 p.m. — Time for bed. We actually don’t go to bed right away and end up chatting, and he plays with the Flashlight, I make up a story about a crocodile and a bunny with the flashlight and my fingers.

Spent: $5.27

DAY FIVE

??:?? — What time.. is it 5? It feels early. Little Bun wiggles around. I try to get him to go back to sleep but he refuses. I get up and get his milk, turn on things blearily…

3:00 a.m. — OMG. WHAT? IT IS THREE A.M.!!!! I give him his milk, then he goes to the bathroom (but not before setting his bottle very nicely down on a flat surface so it doesn’t leak milk all over the bed because he is a conscientiously clean child), and I tell him after milk, BACK TO SLEEP.

3:35 a.m. — Kid isn’t sleeping. FML. I get up with him, grab a blanket (we keep it frigid if we aren’t in the living room, and no one should bloody be up at three a.m. any way… *grumble grumble*…), and set him up with videos while I zone out.

3:40 a.m. — I make a tea. Scroll mindlessly on Instagram. Post things with spelling mistakes.  I watch a few episodes of some show but can’t even concentrate because I am so…. dead… tired. I don’t even know what I did.

6:47 a.m. — Now he is on my lap, we are playing HiWords, this app that is basically a search and find puzzle. He likes to “find” the words but doesn’t know what the vocab is, so needs me to tell him what words to look for under each theme, like: “GARDENING” — Rake, Trim, Bushes, etc…. so he can drag his finger down and find them. He is determined to reach level 167. We are at level 90. O_o

7:02 a.m. — My partner is up. Relieved, I go and conk out on the bed.

8:12 a.m. — I wake up blearily. I at least napped (and not too long) but feel groggy but am not a zombie, so that’s … an upgrade. Little Bun is still searching for words, but is yelping in frustration he cannot find another word for Gardening (it was Trim)… and I help him find it, then Pot, and Bloom.. and then he bursts into tears that we didn’t do an “Extra bonus word” of “TOP” which I apparently missed. (I TOTALLY DID NOT.)

8:18 a.m. — I cuddle and shhhh him because I know he is overtired having been up since 3 a.m. and he sobs against my chest until I explain to him that he is extra grumpy this morning because woke up 4 hours too early!! I explain his nap will also be 4 hours earlier, and to not fret. He asks me when I will be back. I tell him after his nap, maybe at 14:00 (yes we use military time) because Mommy has calls all morning and things to do.

8:22 a.m. — He is finally somewhat calm, I am still cuddling him. He grabs his pillow, crisis averted, snuggles down in between my legs and pulls a blanket over himself. I know what is coming. He is tired and about to nap. I whisper to him: Are you napping now? He replies back: No. I am just going to rest my eyes.. And his super long little boy lashes flutter closed, as he snuggles in between my legs.

8:23 a.m. — 30 seconds later, conked out. I knew it. REST MY EYES. LOL. I slowly slide his head off my lap, tuck a huge pillow behind his head to simulate my body (I used to do this when I was a little girl to my mother when we napped together and I would sneak out from under her arms and leave a pillow in my place).

8:30 a.m. — I get ready and head downstairs to go on calls and work in peace.

9:00 a.m. — First calls of the morning. Thankfully they don’t have afternoon calls.

12:28 p.m. — I come back upstairs to grab my lunch to go because I have to take my car in, and Little Bun is sobbing on the bed. My partner takes his temp and he announces: He is sick. FML. First of all, I hope it isn’t that scary SARS-like virus going around called “Coronavirus” and second, I had plans — appointments for Monday for my eye, a massage for my back on Tuesday… UGH.

1:22 p.m. — I bring the car in, they do a routine checkup and I head home.

5:56 p.m. — Log off from work.

6:11 p.m. — Little Bun is scratching like crazy and I dose him with antihistamines to help him not scratch his skin off. It must be from the dinner we had, I don’t know what he ate that triggered it — hazelnuts, truffles or chestnuts… ??? Those seem to be new things for us that he hasn’t ever had before.

7:28 p.m. — I feed him his dinner, eat mine, and then do all the dishes. Poor baby.

9:56 p.m. — Time for bed.

Spent: $0

DAY SIX

??:?? — So much crying last night. He is waking up from being so itchy because these allergy medication syrups don’t last beyond 4 hours, and wear off in the middle of the night. FML. I get him back to sleep.

7:00 a.m. — I dose him with more allergy medication. My poor baby’s torso is COVERED in hives.

7:59 a.m. — My partner goes off to run errands and I whip into a whirlwind. We vacuum, clean up, do dishes, I shower and curl my hair, Little Bun puts away laundry.

10:46 a.m. — Partner home. He prepares lunch.

12:08 p.m. — This is my look for today. Pretty much 90% secondhand except for the boots. Metallic bronze/gold mixed textured sweater, waxed black jeans, vintage necklace and winter boots.

12:28 p.m. — Lunch with a friend and we walk around the area and pop into little shops to look at things and we have some macarons. $6.75

 

This is a galette des rois macarons.. it is so pretty!

 

12:28 p.m. — These are adorable, these little stuffed animals!

This is also a very nice looking sketch of parts of Montreal.

Can you imagine doing a conference call with this? 1… 8….8….8…….

4:15 p.m. — I find this soap for delicates, and plan on using it on wools. No scent and not as perfume-y as other delicate scents, is what I need for my wools. $15

6:43 p.m. — There was a little treat for dinner time, and he comes to me and says: Mommy there is a treat! Let me eat my soup first, and then I can have my treat. THIS CHILD. <3 <3 <3 <3 He knows soup is good for him (vegetable-driven), and he knows it is part of his diet to stay healthy, so he is conscientious about it instead of whining.

8:31 p.m. — Bedtime.

Spent: $21.75

DAY SEVEN

??:?? — Still crying and yelling from itching. He squeals every 15 minutes until I haul him up and force medicine down to stop the itching.

8:00 a.m. — I dress and leave for yoga. I’m amazed during class that I am one of the few who can do a forearm handstand against the wall. Granted, I can’t balance without the wall but…. I did it!

10:22 a.m. — After class, I head home and work in the lobby answering emails.

11:57 a.m. — Lunch of chicken and salad. I’m really not enjoying chicken these days. I’d rather have cheese. I make a note to mention it to my partner.

2:30 p.m. — I drop by a thrift store to donate goods that I cannot resell, I only eye two items before hightailing out of there (this place is very dangerous for my wallet).

I liked the neckline on this but it is too much for my style these days.

I also loved the look of this whole slouchy fuzzy sweater vibe but hate spiders…

3:13 p.m. — I also end up wandering around a store to get style inspiration and love this look:

My kryptonite! BANGLES! Will wait for these to go on major sale.

4:16 p.m. — Home! My partner buys another cake – une galette – to celebrate our son’s French citizenship papers.

5:28 p.m. — I do all the dishes.

9:56 p.m. — Time for bed. I’m exhausted. I’m feeling the ache from yoga as well which is both good and bad. I’ll be in a bit of pain tomorrow…

Spent: $0

———-

Want more? Read all of my previous Week of Money Diaries.

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have paid my $600K home in cash (my half was $300K), my $180K casr in cash, worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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