1. $100 per month in spending money
I knew this was going to be the hardest one. And not because I am a big spender but mostly because all is so freaking expensive in New York City. Also, any plan with any friend usually comes down to ‘let’s grab a bite’, ‘let’s grab coffee’, ‘let’s grab this’ and ‘let’s grab that’. Otherwise it is actually really, really hard to see friends at all. So I need to come up with some golden rule here. While I definitely went above $100 overall I feel I am much better with tracking what I actually spent this month. I also really tried to spend the minimum, and while doing so this is what I ended up with:
- 10x deli coffees – ($1.25 each = $12.5) – this cannot get any cheaper. My coffee machine broke and I just HAD to had a coffee before getting on a subway in the mornings
- Bagels – $5 – I may have mentioned the bagel trip already
- Thank You cards – $3 – I am really bad at DIY anything so I got 6 cards from Deals Store to have on hand (at 50c each)
- 1 glass of wine – $20 – Whoa! That was for just ONE glass of wine. I went out with a newly met girlfriend and this is what happened. NYC Friday night reality
- Inspirational stickers – $4.5 – I had some stickers on my mac computer and after I removed them, the glue left some pretty horrible marks, so I came up with the idea of getting some nice stickers to use to hide the current ‘glue disaster’
- I purchased ‘The Happiness Project‘ and 2 copies of ‘Better Than Before‘ for gifts – $32
- BlueHost Domain $142 – Sometime mid January I realized I had to renew my BlueHost domain if I wanted to host my blog myself rather than rely on free wordpress. I do prefer to own my own content so I sucked it up and paid 🙁 I used up all my paypal credit that I accumulated by selling on eBay so it was less painful but still
- New Domain purchase – $24 – I paid that for new domain after I decided that my old blog’s name just don’t work for me anymore
So there you go: In January, out of the $100 I planned to spend, I spent $243
Out of that amount I would say I spent $77 for personal expenses and $166 for blogging expenses (for which I currently have no other category rather than ‘personal spending’). Since, thank God, these blogging expenses are a ‘once a year’ happening I think I did well.
2. Continue to be generous
This one is easy and comes naturally to me. I am so very lucky and I have an abundance of all I can possibly ever need. My dad would always say ‘Jak dasz to i masz’ which I would translate as ‘you’ll give, you’ll receive’. It has proven to be very true on multiple occasions.
- I included $20 in the envelope together with a greeting card and a few photos that I sent to my dad. This will cover one month of his prescriptions.
- I sent my sister $53 for my niece’s birthday + $53 for her upcoming birthday (this may seem like a random number but after a conversion $53 becomes an even 200 zloty)
- I gave a few single dollar bills and a $5 to a few homeless elderly men that I saw near my office building
- I brought an extra lunch to the office twice. I shared it with a co-worker who did bring any on those days so she did not to have to spend any money
At first I was not sure if I shall include this category as, to some, it may seem like I am bragging. If it sounds like it, it is not my intention at all. It is mostly for me to put a list together so I see that although it may seem small in a moment, all the acts of kindness add up. I want to see this list grow and I think that putting it in writing will make me more aware not only of what I am already doing but what else I can do to serve others.
I have successfully finished ‘The Happiness Project‘. One book per month? Done!
All jokes aside, I absolutely loved it and recommend that everyone shall read it too. Check out your libraries, you will not regret it. Out of most of the ‘self help’ books that I read, this one stands out. I don’t often re-read books but I will this one. This one and whatever else Gretchen Rubin has ever written. I actually ordered ‘Better Than Before’ just a few days before and cannot wait to put my hands on it.
4. TLC for dad
5. Meal Planning
T. was traveling quite a bit in January, spending only a week at home (out of 4). Rather than meal planning just for myself, I practically cleaned out the entire fridge, freezer and whatever else I could use from my mini pantry. In January I spent only $200 or so on groceries which is great if you live in NYC. I will start with the meal planning this weekend. So, yes, long story short, I have not succeeded much with this resolution.
4 out of 5 😉 Not bad.
Are YOU still sticking to your New Year resolution?