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Personal Bloggy Blog

The Struggle is REAL.

So packing boxes seems like a super easy thing to do, but it is so much deeper than throwing your belongings into a cardboard cube.

Everything I take off a shelf or out of the closet has a different memory, meaning, or feeling attached to it.

Jordan and I have been living in a pretty fair sized arrangement for the past 5 or 6 months and now we are moving to a space that is a bit smaller. So, we decided (almost reluctantly) that it was time to start going through and downsizing where appropriate.

So I pick up my plaid “country” button up shirt and thought to myself, “When was the last time I wore this shirt?” while simultaneously thinking “Remember all the good times that were had in this shirt? Plus it was like a $100 shirt and I… mom only paid like $25, what a steal!”

The voices battle over whether to keep the shirt or not, and throughout the years my heart has always kept that shirt no matter how much I wear it, if I even wear it at all. But this time it was different. I still had the same thoughts but my hands directed my shirt to a pile, a pile that would eventually make it’s way to a new home. Whether that home is to a younger family member, or friend, or even the Salvation Army so someone can love the shirt like I did. Nevertheless it was gone.

I don’t feel sad that I have let go of my shirt, because it has helped me come to grips with the fact that you can’t keep everything forever. You can’t stay the same forever, we all grow and change and that is not a bad thing. I am reaching a point in my life where I don’t need that “country” shirt just incase we go to The Rockin’ Horse Saloon. I am at a point in my life where my passions and the people that I surround myself with, near and far have become more important than anything else.

I enjoy being around friends and family and sure I would still enjoy going to the odd country bar but I’ve reached a new stage in my life where I want to move forward and progress into the person I want to be for the rest of my life. Maybe that sounds kinda deep and maybe a bit annoying but I am truly happy underneath all of the anxiety and spurts of depression I have faced and continue to conquer. I wouldn’t change the path I am on because I know that I will eventually end up exactly where I was meant to be as long as I put my best foot forward to ensure I get there.

Bringing this back to the money aspect of my blog. I want all of my new and consistent readers to know that just because I started a blog about money that does not mean I regard money as the almighty dollar. I actually don’t care all that much for the idea of money being a blockade to people achieving their goals.

I just understand the importance of money in our society and how it is mandatory in advancing your life, career, and much more. This is why I started The Money Diet, I don’t want money to control me, I want to control how I spend my money and how I live my life.

This is why I practice not stressing about money. What I do is: I write down everything that is stressing me out and it’s dollar value, then write down how much money I’m guaranteed to make and then sometimes even add a column of potential extra incomes. If that guaranteed value is higher than the stress value I scrap that paper and don’t worry about it. If you have enough to live and you know in your heart that you are trying and you want to move forward, you will be okay and you will move forward.

I leave you here with a picture of someone else’s plaid “country” shirt.

Categories
the money diet

Week 14

Wow week 14 already. It’s been a ride and week 13 really hit me hard as I was buying Christmas gifts and I treated myself to little something.

I’m trying my best to keep my spirits up in the midst of the seasons transitioning (were going into winter) or I could say “winter is coming” (referencing a show in which I’ve fallen asleep halfway through the first episode 3 times and never been able to successfully start).

I’m trying to get myself into new routines like taking vitamins and going to sleep on time and doing things that make me happy.

I’ve found the early results are pretty good so I’m going to keep up and maybe I can get through the winter season without suffering from mad seasonal depression like the past 5-8 years.

Now to the blog!

Monday

Monday started off well. I worked at 7:30am to 3:30pm, spent $5 on some coffee. While I was at work I ripped my pants.

So I had to rollllllll on over to the mall and buy new pants.

While I was there I was taking pics of things I may want for Christmas (yes I do love getting gifts, but I love giving them more).

I ended up spending $134.60 at the mall. YIKES!

I came home and had dinner with Jordan. We hung out for a bit, Jordan went to bed and I played 2k for a bit.

Tuesday

I woke up in the morning and attempted to do things but kinda just chilled.

I worked from 10am – 5pm. It was a meh kinda day.

I ended up going the whole day without spending money.

I went to my moms for bit to hangout and chat about this weekends plans.

My mom dropped me off and I hung out with Jord, we had latte and watched some Lucifer before going to bed.

Wednesday

I woke up and chilled for a bit, made myself a lunch, played some 2k.

I didn’t have to be at work until 11:30. So I got ready to go and was on my way.

I got halfway there and realized I forgot my lunch. So I had to spend $6.95 on lunch.

When I got off work at 6:30 Jordan met up with me and we bought some groceries and a few Christmas gifts, it cost $52.30.

We packed our bags and ventured home.

We put all the groceries away and turned on some Lucifer. We mucked half a bag on Jalepeno Cheddar popcorn.

Jord had to work early in the morning so she went to bed. I stayed up and played 2k for about and hour and a half and then called it a night.

Thursday

Ah Thursday, I don’t work until 2pm today. I have a couple things on my list and I need to get them done.

I have to:

  • Bake cupcakes for Jordan
  • Go return a Christmas gift.
  • Practice Guitar
  • Workout
  • Shower and get ready for work

I’m up and at it at 9am. That gives me like about 4 hours to get all of this done. Worst comes to worst I can always return the gift on the weekend.

PS she snowing good out there today!

I successfully finished everything except returning the Christmas gift! Not bad!

I went to work for 2pm and worked until 10pm. It was a good shift. I was training for supervising on the night shift and I did most of it on my own. I felt pretty good about it.

When I arrived home I realized I took home the keys for the office and would have to wake up early to return them.

I talked with Jordan for awhile and then we went to bed.

Friday

I woke up at 7am and had to quickly get ready to take the keys into work!

I had a nice walk, it was crisp and cool out and woke me up quite well.

I dropped the keys off much to the relief of my coworker who was opening the store.

I came home had some breakfast and got ready for work.

I left around 8:45am and when I got to work I realized I had forgotten my coffee on the counter.

Luckily when my buddy Zack showed up he gave me a Tim’s Double Double! It powered me through the next few hours of my shift!

I purchased chocolate and some snacks on my breaks it cost $9.45.

I clocked out and hopped in my moms car. We went to pick up Jordan to drop her off at her bus.

We drove her and when we got there the bus was FULL and the next bus would come in like 20 minutes. So Jord told us to leave because she didn’t want us to wait. She called me and said the bus was going to be like an hour late. So I told her I would grab her headphones (which she had forgotten at home) and bring them to her.

I hopped in the car, got home, grabbed her headphones and zoomed to her.

Jord got in the car to warm up and we sat until her bus showed up.

I said goodbye and drove to my moms.

My mom ordered pizza for us for dinner. I chilled for a bit and watched the latest episode of Rupaul’s Drag Race UK.

After the show finished we talked with my sister Nicole who had shown up and then my mom dropped myself and Adrian off at my grandma’s.

Adrian and I played a game of NBA 2k20 and then played some overcooked.

We threw on the new Green Eggs and Ham Netflix Original and chilled until bed time.

Saturday

Woke up this morning and had some breakfast with Adrian and then played some more overcooked.

We then moved on to Beyblades and after a thrilling tournament that ended in a double disqualification final (due to Adrian’s favourite Bey losing) we both got cleaned up and went on an adventure.

We walked over to Shoppers Drug Mart to buy bus tickets, I spent $44.80.

We talked to a few of my coworkers and then walked to the bus stop.

We rode the bus to the mall and hopped off. We made our way to every store that had toys and looked around.

My mom got off work as we were arriving at the mall so we met her at Toys R Us.

I spent $7.90 on a pack of Fortnite Mighty Beanz for Adrian.

We looked around a few more stores then we made our way to Popeyes Chicken and mom treated us to lunch.

Mom drove me back home and she picked up Adrian’s stuff. Shortly after my sister Nicole texted me asking if I was doing anything.

She picked me up and we headed to the mall, we made a quick stop at the pet store which cost me $71.20. We grabbed a Starbucks and walked around for awhile. I bought some gifts while I was there. The total cost was $56.30.

We drove to my moms and hung out for awhile. Nicole left and then not long after I went home with my moms car.

I got ready and went to bed! I was SO TIRED AND OVERSTUFFED WITH FOOD!

Sunday

Woke up and got ready for work. I drove to Tim’s to grab a coffee for my manager Roxy and I. Cost me $10.25.

After I ate my breakfast sandwich I went to work. It was a fairly simple day at work just making sure all the bad food was out and all the new food was in.

I hopped in my moms car and raced home to get changed. I grabbed my stuff and went to pick up my mom and Adrian.

Shortly we were on our way to Kingston to visit my sister Jess. When we got there we went to this restaurant called Coco Frutti. It is delicious but man it is filling.

After lunch we dropped Jess off and we went to Costco. We navigated our way through the sea of humans and exited the store unharmed with our purchases in hand. Total spent was $70.70.

We left Kingston and went to pick Jordan up from the bus stop since she had just gotten back into town from her weekend away.

My mom drove us home and we tidied up around the house, chilled for a bit, had a grilled cheese and then went to bed.

Recap

This week did not go as planned. I had a few things come up and they boosted my spending, my cats destroyed my phone charger so I had to get a new one and that cost $70 and the cats ran out of food at the end of this week so that cost $70. I did also use my debit card all week.

So I have vowed to go to the credit union on Tuesday and pull out cash and get back on track.

Here is a look at my spending:

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the money diet

A Breakdown

Hello there. It has been brought to my attention that some of the ways I’m able to save money, or some of my “benefits” have not been clearly established.

As well I have revamped my saving method slightly. So I have decided to dedicate this post to fully analyzing and breaking down my saving method so that people in different financial situations can tweak it to fit their needs.

Okay, so I will break down every perk that I recieve currently and then breakdown my personal saving method and then finally outline how someone in a different situation could utilize these tools for saving.

My Situation

I just graduated College. So naturally I owe some money – $14,000

I have credit card debt from school as well – $2000

I pay $75 a month for utilities in my current living situation.

and then I have some smaller costs (Spotify, gym membership, etc) that come out of my accounts monthly.

The Perks

So I am super lucky to have people in my life that are willing to help me out.

First and foremost, my grandma is allowing my partner and myself to live with her for a bit while we start our careers and save money. This saves us each between $500-$1000 a month. So let’s call it $750 saved. (Shoutout Grandma!)

My mother helps me out by covering certain things for me, My phone bill, and she supplies the Netflix for everyone aha (Thanks Mom!) This saves me about $100 a month.

And lastly my partner lives with me so anything that we spend money on there is a good chance we’re going halfsies on it, things such as entertainment, and groceries.

There are always other ways people help me but these are the set in stone ones.

Expected Earnings (Weekly)

  • Income #1 – $400-$500
  • Income #2 – $20-$40

Total = $420-$540

What I Do

So what I do is I go to the bank and withdraw $140 on Monday. This money is intended to last me from the start of Monday until the end of day on Sunday.

I break my money down into four $20’s, four $10’s, and four $5’s. This is likely just a personal thing but I find it helps with spending if I’m going out and don’t think I need to bring $20, I have the option to bring a $10, or a $5 instead of allowing myself to be equipped with $20 for no certain reason.

I categorize my money into 3 categories which you will have noticed in my last few posts. These categories are; Grocery ($50), Entertainment ($50), and Misc. ($40). This allows me to have an idea of how much I should be spending on certain things but also allows me to buy things I want (within reason).

Breaking it Down Differently

So the #1 thing to note when analyzing my saving method is that it is broken down into a weekly amount. So for a month you can break it down into fourths ~ because months are around 4 weeks.

GOAL

First you would want to figure out what you’re saving towards , for this example I’m going to say it’s a car between $5,000 and $10,000.

EXPENSES

Now you breakdown what your expenses are:

ExpensesCost (Monthly)
Rent$700
Utilities$100
Phone$80
Wifi$70
Credit Card$150
Student Loans$330
Misc (Music, Gym, etc.)$100

Total = $1530

So now you have a total for your fixed monthly expenses. Break it down to a weekly number: $1530/4 weeks ~.

Weekly Total = $383~

INCOME

Say you work 2 jobs part time 20 hours per week, one at minimum of $14/hr and the other slightly higher at $15/hr. And we’ll take out a small amount for taxes and stuff.

  • Income #1 = $1050
  • Income #2 = $1100

Now add these up and divide it into a weekly number, $2150/4 weeks ~.

Weekly Total = $538~

Now comes the tricky part. You have to figure out what you have left over and decide what you’re going to spend on entertainment, grocery and have as a Misc/backup.

So we know that weekly, your income is $538 and your expenses are $383.

To figure out your leftover just take your income and subtract your expenses like so, $538-$383 = $155.

If you are a single person you should be able to get away with spending no more than $40 a week on groceries, Entertainment you can sit at $40 as well, and then your misc can be somewhere around $20. Now you have a budget of $100 per week.

When you look at it week to week $55 dollars doesn’t seem like a lot. BUT when you start to add it up you could save $2860 in just 1 year.

And this example is based on an individual who has a lot of bigger expenses when compared to their income.

If you adjust this to someone who is working one full time job at a rate of say $27/hr and you keep the expenses virtually identical this is what it could look like:

$27×37.5 hr/week = $1010~, and I’ll even take off 15% for taxes and such which will bring us to $880~.

Then we take away our $383 in expenses per week that we figured out earlier, that brings the sum to $497.

This means before you decide on your categories and allotments you have almost $500 left over per week.

Now let’s say that you are going out a little more and you’ve decided to buy cashew cheese instead of the dairy stuff. We’ll bump that spending allotment to $80 (Grocery), $80 (Entertainment), and $40 (Misc/Backup).

That is double what our last person was spending at $200 per week. Now if we subtract $200 from our leftover of $497 we are left with $297 per week, meaning you could save $15,444 in a single year.

That’s a lot of money and I think it is totally doable. I believe the keys to this method are as follows:

  • Limit Debit/Credit transactions (Use Cash)
  • Practice Will Power and Self Control
  • The Breakdown (Week by Week)
  • The Build up (Yearly Savings Potential)
  • Belief that you can do it

With all of the above said, I honestly don’t believe there is any ONE PERFECT method to saving, but in my life up to this day I have been most successful using this method.

I believe there is a clear mental similarity when it comes to budgeting and dieting. That is why I’ve called my journey The Money Diet, because I am trying to overcome my laziness, practice will power and stay on track. The biggest problem I believe people have while dieting is the constant fad approach of trying new hip diet trends and this is also very common when budgeting. Think of the “52 week budget”, 50/30/20, 80/20, the zero sum budget. I think it is more important to find a reason to save and then find a method that works for you. I’ve saved a bunch using my current method. I attribute my success with this method to the things that are motivating me, not entirely the method itself.

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the money diet

Week 9 – True Redemption.

I woke up Monday at 7:30am. I had a nice breakfast and watched some Dragon’s Den as I finished last weeks blog post.

I made a list of things to do, and I set out to get them all done. (hopefully.)

I got most of it done by the end of the day!

I got home from the bank just after my partner got home from work. Soon I was making dinner. We ate and then left to catch the bus.

We went to the gym and worked some chest, triceps, and shoulders. It was a good workout!

We got home, indulged in some protein, showered and went to bed.

Tuesday

So big news, all of my shifts have been regulated to a single time. Instead of working 6am-2pm, and 7am-3pm on and off I will be working 7am-3pm straight through! I GET TO SLEEP IN!

Work was hecking busy, so it flew by like a plane.

When I got home I started making dinner for my partner and I. They got home about an hour after I did and we ate shortly after. I worked on some things while we watched Lucifer.

My partner and I did a workout together then got ready for bed!

Wednesday

Today kind of dragged on a bit… work was slow and I was tired!

I bought some lunch which cost $4.80 and some groceries after I left which cost $15.95.

My mom came into my work today and asked if I would help her pick up some couches.

So we rented a cargo van, and my partner and I picked up 2 couches and a chair for her.

The seats were for the basement of my moms house which is turning into my brother’s play area. He was super excited when we brought them home.

My mom dropped us off and to our pleasant surprise my grandma had made some tasty treats for us! We went downstairs and did some meal prepping.

We watched some Lucifer and were off to bed!

Thursday

Woke up for my shift and it was fine! Everything went smooth, so no complaints.

I bought lunch at work and it cost $4.25.

My partner met me after work and I bought some groceries. The total was $16.50.

We walked home and I made dinner while my partner went out to run an errand.

When they got home we ate a “flatbread pizza” I had made.

We headed to the gym for about an hour and then we stopped by the store on our way home. I spent $20.90.

We went home and went to bed.

Friday

Work was FINE *he says as he walks to his room and slams the door*

Work was rough, for real. We had so many juice spills from faulty cases in today’s order. Everything just happened at the same time, it was a mess.

After work I got home and talked to my grandma for a bit. I then went and sat for a moment.

After sitting my partner got home and we started making dinner. I had a chicken burger and they had pasta with meatballs!

After dinner I hopped on the bus and went to the gym! It was a good work out, trying to keep at it and not lose momentum!

I caught the bus home, showered, had protein and went to bed!

Saturday

I went to work for 7am. It was a busy day. I was ready for 3pm and my dad came in. I clocked out of work and talked to my dad for a bit.

He dropped me at home and I got ready to go to Oktoberfest with my partner!

It was a great time! I spent $30 on beers for the 2 of us. We ordered a pizza and ate the night away!

Sunday

Since we went to bed so early we didn’t waste any of our day! We woke up around 830am and had some pancakes and then did some tasks around the apartment.

We put new screens in our windows, did some laundry, tidied under the stairs among other things! Quite successful!

My aunt and cousin came by to see my grandma so we went and said hello!

We went out to buy some fruits and vegetables from the store. I spent $25.

We came home and my partner made a delicious salad for us! We watched Lucifer than got ready for bed!

I feel good about this week! I still have money left over and I still had a fun time!

Here is a breakdown of my spending!

Categories
the money diet

Week 6 – Uh-Oh

Monday

I woke up this morning fairly well rested. I walked with my partner part way on their way to work. I stopped at my bank to withdraw my money for the week and get some forms. On my way back from the bank I grabbed an ice coffee and a bite to eat from the coffee shop, I spent $8.40.

I spent most of my afternoon emailing and tidying things up (BORING).

I went to work for 3pm. It was alright, a lot of on the computer modules and stuff. I got off and went over to the grocery store to grab something to eat cause I was STARVING! I spent $5.25.

I came home on the bus and my partner had made spaghetti and meatballs with caesar salad! I had a healthy serving. We watched an episode of Lucifer, my partner finished baking some muffins and we were off to bed!

Money remaining at the end of day is $126.35.

Tuesday

Today I woke up and went to my 6am shift. It was a rather busy day, my orders came 1 after the other, after the other… after the other, after the other.

I ended up taking a lunch with an hour and a half left of my shift. I spent $3 on an iced coffee.

After my shift my mom showed up to our place to visit my grandma and graciously allowed me to use her car to drive my partner to their interview. After dropping my partner off I went to pick my brother up from daycare. We stopped by the coffee shop and I grabbed him a sprinkled donut.

We then went back to pickup my partner. We drove home, talked with everyone for a bit then went downstairs to our apartment for a snooze.

Wednesday

Holy Wednesday, I woke up for my 7am and was feeling okay. But the longer my shift dragged on it got worse and worse. The mood today just wasn’t what it usually is. I did however get to eat outside on my lunch and you bet I saw 4 seagulls fighting over the crust of an old slice of pizza! (SWEET!).

A video of seagulls munching Za

After work I went home and I got to play a little bit of my video game I hadn’t touched pretty much since it came out in January.

I did a couple chores and then I was on my way to check on my grandparents house (they asked us to house sit for a bit while they were away) too bad I got all the way to the bus stop and realized I forgot the key to get in! WOW! So I walked back home waited until the next bus came and made sure I had the key.

My partner met me there after their shift at work. We stayed and hung out with the cat for awhile and then caught the bus to go home.

Thursday

I woke up, had a coffee, went to work and it was heck. I couldn’t get a break in, orders kept coming in one after another and I was just straight swamped. Luckily I had someone come to the rescue and help me out at the end of my shift. When I left work I spent $5.55 on 10 ice cream treats.

I got off work, came home and hung out with my partner until they went off to work.

I made some butter chicken, it was superbly delicious. My mom stopped by. I took her car and I picked up my brother so she could have a tea with my gramma.

My brother and I stopped by the mall to see my partner at work, he wanted to try on a hand sanitizer they were selling, he smelled his hands and started freaking out and wiping the sanitizer on his pants. He said it smelled like bad perfume. The employee clearly felt awkward…goodbye.

I promised him we would go to the toy store. I bought him this thing called Pantaro? and it’s part of Goo Jit Zu? it’s like a gooey panther thing… I don’t know really. And me being the big kid I am and since I haven’t really treated myself in awhile I found an exclusive Funko Pop! that I don’t have so I bought that for myself and a box of Pok√©mon cards (NERD!).

Wtf is this?

In total I spent $72.30. I had to split the cost between my Misc. and my entertainment. Worth it though.

I came home and hung out with my partner a bit before bed! I had a big day ahead of me.

Friday

I woke up friday for my 7-3 shift and it was alright! Always busy.

After my shift I went home and quickly got ready because I was working a shift at my new job. So I went in at 430 and worked until 830. The people I worked with were so fun to be around but the job itself was less than stimulating and honestly working almost 13 hours in a day is completely exhausting especially when it is at 2 different places.

One of the people offered to drive me home. I stayed up to eat a bit with my partner and then went to bed.

Saturday

I woke up at 3am and felt awful. And I guess when I went back to bed I turned off all of my alarms because I woke up to a text from my manager at 6:01 asking if I was on my way. I texted her and she was fine with it. I got to work for 6:30 and worked until 2:30. It was okay but I had a gnarly headache the whole time. I bought a bottle of Kombucha, it cost $3.15.

I decided in that moment that I couldn’t do 6 days a week at almost 13 hours a day every week for the next 4 months. I would have literally died.

I came home and my aunt, mom, brother and cousin were all there. I ran down to the basement to see my partner.

We went upstairs and made salsa with everybody! it was a grand ole time.

After the first batch went on the stove my partner and I went out to buy some groceries. We ended up buying $209.45 worth of stuff. We chopped that down to $69.45 because the store had a special on where $100 worth of points was actually worth $140 (just for the weekend). Unfortunately when I add this number to my total money spent for the weekend I am over my weekly limit.

Sunday

Sunday I woke up from a nice sleep and had breakfast with my partner! We went out for a nice walk downtown. It started to rain so we stopped in at a local coffee shop called Focus.

We took the bus home and I made lunch as my partner got ready for work.

They went to work and I left shortly after to check on my grandparents cat. I stopped by Walmart to grab my grandpa a give for his birthday. It cost me $18.75, I grabbed a Large Fry and a drink from McDonalds because I was starving, it cost $5.65. I ventured to my grandparents, I stayed there for awhile with the cat and head home.

At the end of week six I have officially missed the mark for the first time. I was over this week by $51.49 with my grand total spent being $191.49.

I am obviously a little annoyed at myself BUT I know for a fact that big shops ($209.45 -$140 points) like that don’t happen super often for us and I don’t treat myself and my brother to things ($72.30) like that almost ever. So I am confident I can be well under my goal for next week.

Here is a look at my spending for week 6: