DAY 1 – $0

6:20A My little dog needs to go potty. I take her to the roof deck. It was her sister’s Gotcha Day yesterday and they had cake for dinner… could cake be the culprit for this rude awakening?

6:45A Have a vitamin D gummy (the bottle says take two for 250% of daily needs? I just take one, so I’m basically paying half price!), brush teeth, wash face (water & micellar water), moisturize (with SPF)

7:00A Feed dogs

7:10A Walk dogs

7:30A Check on all my plants

7:45A Cross-stitch. I just learned how to last week.  In the grand family tradition of me working painstakingly to create fugly things to give to my mom, I will mail these to her upon completion.

I’m working on my second bookmark right now.

8:15A Breakfast. I cook noodles with the last of my mustard green and bean curd stir-fry. 

8:50A Cross-stitch. I’m completely winging it. After failing to adhere to the free pattern I got for my first bookmark, which I finished last night, I confidently threw away the instructions. I am now headily on my own.

11:45A Chores. I’m taking a break from cross-stitching to change bed linens. This is loosely on the schedule at 2-week intervals. Friday was two weeks, and finally today I got around to it. My little dog wants to sunbathe on the roof deck. I water my plants and murder some spotted lantern flies. It was harrowing. No one helped me. 

on the bright side I discovered that my brussel sprouts are coming in

12:30P Linens are in the wash, so I hop on the computer. I’m meant to work on my QuickBooks for the household, instead I started drafting this MD.

1:15P Lunch. I’m having leftover sour cabbage fish hot pot.

5:00P Party time. I’m cracking open a beer with my bath. I usually read in the bath. I’m reading The Color of Law right now. I love baths because I can read. After the bath I put on my lash lengthening serum, and jojoba oil that I use as a moisturizer. I’m trying to use up stuff I bought on a trial basis.

6:00P Feed dogs. Followed by cross-stitch. I’m working overtime. I really want my mom to have these dumb bookmarks.

6:45P Dinner. We have a party on the roof deck with our dogs. Dinner is vegan sausage made from scratch with rolls from scratch and a mustard-y sweet sauerkraut sauce, with sauerkraut made from scratch! After dinner we discuss why I’m not a fan of libertarianism.

8:30P Party is over. Cleaning up requires walking all of our plates and trash down to the kitchen, on the first floor, from the roof. What a trek.

8:45P I’m in bed. More cross-stitching ensues. 

In the morning my spouse does the dishes and feeds the cat. 

In the afternoon my spouse meal preps with stuff from our last grocery run.

In the evening my spouse gets items ready for the grill for our “party”, and feeds the cat.

Day 2 – $162.10

6A Wake up. I dreamed my grandpa just died and all my toes were bleeding at the memorial. My spouse is awake a little later. We hang out. Brush teeth, rinse face with water, hydrating serum, change out of bed clothes, SPF moisturizer.

6:50A Walk dogs.

7:15A Feed dogs, cross-stitch.

8:00A Breakfast. Fish stew again. I have two more servings after this meal.

8:20A Cross-stitch.

11:00A I’m hungry again. I make a quesadilla with an egg and the Gotdamn BBQ sauce. Shout out to them. Super yummy.

11:15A Errands. First stop is no-contact dropping off documents. Then post office drop-off. $9.20 Then dry-cleaners. We haven’t needed to dry-clean much so I’ve left this batch at the cleaners for over a month at this point. Bless her. $27.90

12:30P Home. I do some chores.

2:00P Second Lunch. My spouse made shrimp po’boys for us. Shout out to Joe’s Gourmet Fish Fry. Good stuff. More cross-stitching after (second) lunch.

4:00P (Tele-)Therapy. My therapist said she was proud of me. That made me tear up. $125

5:00P Screen time. I got an email from my employee with stuff for me to look over. I’ll get to it tomorrow. I get into a conversation with my partner about why I think I could spend $2,000 in an attempt to rig an online contest and win the grand prize of $5,000. Spoiler alert: it won’t work. I still feel tempted. Damn gambling monkey brain.

8:30P Dinner. We have homemade pizza with vegan pepperoni. We watch Aparna Nancherla’s standup on Netflix. More cross-stitching.

9:45P I’m in bed updating this.

Day 3 – $0

6:30A I’m awake.

6:45A Walk dogs. 

7:10A Feed dogs. Cross-stitch. 

8:10A Breakfast. Still fish stew.

9:15A My best friend called (yay!) 

9:30A Check all my plants. I also pot some yam leaves I’d been rooting in water. 

Today is shower day for my indoor plants (except succulents).

10:20A I fold and put away linens I washed two days ago. It only takes <10 minutes, but I have to put it off for several hours to days.

11:10A Fish stew, because I’m hungry again. I’m all down with this dish. Later today I’ll meal prep some more Chinese food.

11:30A Screen time. I have to respond to our employee from yesterday. The company is in maintenance (hibernation?) mode, and compared to when there was a lot to do, now I never feel like doing what little is required of me. Bad avoidance brain. I’m also catching up on this, and I try to work on budget stuff but the Amex site is still down.

1:00P I doze off for a bit.

2:30P Lunch. It’s shrimp po’boy again. heart-eye emoji.

3:00P I am still on this cross-stitching struggle bus. I’ve gone ahead and made my own design, and I’m having trouble finishing it off in some way that I like. 

The stitches I’m trying are not giving off the texture I thought I’d get.

6:00P It’s time for me to meal prep some Chinese food for the next few days.

7:30P I’ve cut myself, and I feel all of the self-pity.

7:50P with my partner acting as medic and sous chef, dinner is served. I’m proud of myself for making 4 dishes that are all vegan.

9:00P I’m in bed now. Catching up here and looking at r/coronavirus again.

12:30A Finally making myself go to sleep after I fell down a YouTube rabbit hole. I’ve seen Megan Thee Stallion’s Tiny Desk Concert SO many times. I never regret it.

Day 4 – $0

5:57A I’m awake. My bandaid hurts because it’s on too tight. I take the dogs out on the roof deck. No walk today. I feel distressed over shaving off roughly a fifth of my fingernail. I hem and haw over cleaning it with peroxide. My partner does not make fun of me. All done, I feel a little better. We lay in bed talking out different future scenarios. What would it be like if we had $$$, $$, or $. How much longer do we plan to stay in our current home & businesses. Our dogs, ever respectful, are only minimally disruptive for a time. 

7:00A Feed dogs. I broke my embroidery needle last night while on video with my cousin. So I’m just going to read. 

Editor’s Note:This is the day I gave up on a really detailed diary. I’m not surprised I didn’t make it past Day 4. I have a history of giving up on projects that I’m not required to finish. Also I fell in the Pandemic Time Sludge in which I just read, work, nap and putter about with no concept of time.

Day 5 – $0

Big day! I sent these to my parents.

In the morning I video chat with my cousin as she waits for the vet. My dog niece has an upset tummy.

Lunch was roasted garlic pizza. 

I spent the afternoon and evening researching different counties on Wikipedia and Zillow. 

In the afternoon I continuously bother my partner about where we could potentially move, in the future, once the pandemic dust settles. 

Dinner was leftover Chinese food I made.

Day 6 – $101.08

Breakfast is (homemade) kimchi fried rice with leftover rice from Chinese food.

In the morning I have a bath and call with my best friend. When I dressed I had to put on one of the few pairs of shorts that still fit. In the pocket I found my ticket for Dear Evan Hansen from 2018. So that was the last time I was this big. Yikes. After I dress we run errands.

We go to an Asian supermarket. $70.20 

Besides groceries, I also got this.

We also hit up Aldi for American stuff. $30.88

I video chat with Mini! She taught me what “cluttercore” is. It’s similar to my own dream home aesthetic, which is cottagecore but ~witchy~. I wish we lived together because we seem to have tastes that would mesh well.

Dinner was hot pot party! I froze some tofu as soon as we got home from the stores but it still wasn’t all the way frozen by dinner, duly noted. Next time wait one whole day to enjoy proper spongy goodness. 

We watched The Clapper with Ed Helms, Tracy Morgan and Amanda Seyfried. It was meh, would not recommend.

Day 7 – $46.67

For breakfast I had some soup leftover from hot pot. Then I was offered a quesadilla with BBQ sauce, which I piggishly accepted.

In the morning I ordered Mini her birthday present from LTFP Shop on Etsy. I got her two masks and scrunchies sets. $33.71

These are mine I got before
which came with a sweet note from the seller/creator

I found a dreamy linen (from Nisa’s Fabric and Beyond) I really wanted to embroider on, so I had a lil splurge. $12.96

I canceled my Netflix subscription as my partner discovered we have it free with our internet service. I migrate my watch list.

Lunch was homemade pasta in a homemade alfredo sauce.

Today was a (deep) cleaning day. I was offered floors but I erroneously chose surfaces, which included toilets and stove. I only got one load of laundry in during the whole ordeal, so tomorrow will have to be dedicated to laundry.

Dinner was a pan pizza and leftover hot pot. I added the remaining half daikon, some enoki mushrooms and napa cabbage to bulk up the soup. I made a punch with cranberry juice, prosecco (we ain’t on a champagne budget!), sparkling water, and vodka. We watched Gina Yashere’s stand-up on Netflix. 7/10.


Therapy: $125

Groceries: $101.08

Gifts: $33.71

Dry cleaning: $27.90

Arts & Crafts: $12.96

Postage: $9.20 + 2 forever stamps 

Total was $309.85 of which only $235.28 (therapy + groceries + postage) I’d categorize as absolute necessities, but overall this was a pretty typical week. I think I have decent self-restraint. Like my sister Amanda used to say, frugality is a muscle, train it! Onward!

Money Diary a la R29 but then I fell into The Time Sludge mid-week
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