A Week In Brooklyn, NY, On A $154,000 Salary

Photo: Getty Images.
Welcome to Money Diaries, where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking women how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last dollar.
Today: a Commercial Product Lead working in Advertising who makes $154,000 and spends some of her money this week on a disco ball.
Occupation: Commercial Product Lead
Industry: Advertising
Age: 33
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Salary: $154,000, with a target 15% annual bonus
Paycheck Amount (biweekly): $3,400 net
Gender Identity: Woman
Monthly Expenses
Rent: $2,890 (I live alone)
Student Loans: $0 (My parents paid for college; I know for a fact I wouldn't be in my current financial situation if not for this)
401(k): I max the pre-tax out every year since my company generously matches up to 50%. I have ~$155,000 saved.
Savings: ~$64,000 in two bank savings accounts (one in the US and one in the UK where I lived for two years. I recently switched my auto-savings to kick $1,000 a month to my Betterment account.)
Investments: I've vested ~$177,000 worth of RSUs my company gave me as part of my compensation package (I know, I need to diversify ASAP!) and a little over $5,000 in Betterment.
Monthly Metrocard: $127, taken out of my paycheck pre-tax
Cell Phone: $80
Internet/Cable: $117
Electric: ~$60
Gas:~$80 (my rent doesn't include heat/hot water, which is uncommon in NYC)
Netflix: $11
NY Times + Crossword: $22
Spotify+Hulu: $13
Freshly: ~$200 (or $50 a week for four meals)
Zipcar: $8
Donations: varies, but I donate $15 to the National Audubon Society monthly

Day One

11 a.m. — I wake up later than normal thanks to a first date going better than expected the night before. I'm naturally a night owl, but force myself to get as close to “functional morning person” as possible during the workweek. Unfortunately, since it's the holidays, I've fallen back into my creature of the night ways. I lounge a bit, make plans to meet my best friend, O., at our go-to weekend brunch spot a bit later than normal, then finally get out of bed to feed my parrot, make coffee, and eat some skyr yogurt to fend off the hangries.
1:30 p.m. — Something in my brain isn't working and five minutes before I need to leave, I realize I'm not dressed or at all presentable to the public, so it's a brisker than normal walk to the brunch spot for me. I get an egg sandwich with lamb sausage and a black coffee, fending off the temptation to get a boozy brunch cocktail for a little hair of the dog. I've been pretty liberal with my unhealthy food and alcohol consumption (hey, it's the holidays!) but I know I need to start getting myself disciplined again. $24.22
3 p.m. — O. and I check out movie times at Nitehawk and Alamo Drafthouse (which let you eat/drink fancy things during the movie), but the flick we want to see (Knives Out) is sold out for all of the afternoon/evening screenings. We decide to get serious about planning a trip to Cambodia in February instead, so we head back to my place, crack open a bottle of Georgian Mtsvane wine I have in my fridge, and get to it.
5 p.m. — After calling the airline I fly with (we're both trapped by our frequent flyer statuses), I'm told I can't use a $1,600 eCredit I have because there's some weird restriction on it and since my flight is with a codeshare partner and not the actual airline, I've got to pay out of pocket. The customer service rep. is beyond friendly, but I'm bummed to the max. We apply for our visas online as well as book our hotels and flights between Phnom Penh, Koh Rong, and Siem Reap. I put everything on my card and put all the things we've booked in a Google sheet so O. can hit me back later. $1,495
8 p.m. — Text a bit with the dude from last night, who's eager to meet up again this week, even suggesting we do something New Year's Eve. I already made plans to hang out with O. and our friend, E., at the fancy cocktail bar where E. bartends, so date dude and I settle on meeting up at a bar closer to me tomorrow evening.
9 p.m. — I eat a simple dinner of hummus and pita way too late in the evening and pop a melatonin with the full expectation that I'll go to bed at a more reasonable time tonight. Nope. I haven't reset the app timers on my phone, so I don't get to sleep until well after 12:30 a.m. Whoops.
Daily Total: $1,519.22

Day Two

8:30 a.m. — I usually don't take time off around the holidays because things are pretty slow, so since the weather's crummy and there's nothing urgent to take care of, I'm working from home. I've been busting my ass at work for months and know the first quarter of the year is going to be hell, so I'm taking advantage of the calm while I can and slacking off a little.
10:30 a.m. — Get out of bed (yeah, I'm the worst today), feed the bird, make coffee, and eat some high fiber cereal with almond milk (because I'm in my 30s and each day is a day closer to death now, I guess), while listening to the Office Hours with Tim Heidecker podcast. I look at the hotels we've booked in Cambodia again and decide to upgrade one of our rooms (I'll cover the difference without telling O., who's funemployed as of tomorrow).
12:30 p.m. — I'm keeping an eye out on my email, but also watching The Office on Netflix for the millionth time. Nothing super urgent has come through, so I dick around some more and let my parrot out. He flies over to me and immediately chomps down on my finger. Dude! You're not supposed to react when they do this (even though it hurts), so I calmly walk him back to his cage. I feel guilty that I haven't been spending much time with him due to travel and social activities.
2 p.m. — I eat a salmon poke bowl I got from a Fresh Direct delivery and then go down to my building's package room to pick up my Amazon packages full of things to help me organize my closets, which have become a nightmare after two years in this apartment. I get started on my bedroom closet and quickly realize how many things I don't need anymore, so I bag them up for a Goodwill run later in the week.
6 p.m. — Date dude texts to confirm our evening plans, but I'm still a sweaty mess from organizing my closet so I push back on his timing suggestion of 6. I shower and get ready, but put a lot less effort into my look than I did for our Saturday date because I genuinely feel like I'd prefer to stay at home and keep working on apartment organization. The bar isn't far, but the weather is awful (cold, rain, and wind — no thanks), so I call an Uber. $10.29
9:15 p.m. — We sort of make friends with the bartender (she gives us two free shots), but since neither of us have eaten and things are continuing to go well, we decide we need food. Date dude picks up the tab and I suggest a Tex Mex place a few blocks away. We get there and agree to split an order of chicken nachos and spam tacos. He's paid for everything up until this point (including all the drinks on Saturday night) and considering we've chatted vaguely about our financial situations (even though he works in finance, I know I make a lot more than him), I'm adamant about picking up the full tab. This has turned guys off in the past, so I've taken to warning them that I expect to go halfsies. $99.58
12:30 a.m. — We're still having a good time hanging out and I don't have to work tomorrow, so I suggest another bar down the street. It's super crowded, which is a great excuse for squeezing in super close and making out. The bar gets rowdy and lots of glasses are getting broken, so I suggest going to the way more lowkey place next door. I pick up the tab again. $16.42
1:30 a.m. — The bar next door is way less crowded and they're playing the Talking Heads, so all around a better vibe. I give date dude a $20 and ask him to get me a pale ale. I'm annoyed when he comes back with an IPA (he apologizes and offers me his beer instead, but luckily it's a fruity one instead of a hoppy one so I keep it). At one point a guy comes to our booth trying to sell us lube, which we both fend off. That's definitely a new weird bar experience to add to my Brooklyn roster. $20
2:45 a.m. — Some woman in the bar is yelling and date dude is fading (and has to work in the morning!), so we call it. I Uber home because it's fucking freezing out. I'm feeling in good spirits and I text my friend, B., to tell her how much I love her. B. and I have kind of a weird friendship journey: We both had classes together in college and lived in the same Brooklyn neighborhood for years, but didn't become friends until she moved to London about a year after I did. We immediately became ride-or-dies and now we call the time we weren't friends “the lost years.” $8.01
Daily Total: $154.30

Day Three

12 p.m. — Wake up to a good morning text/”work from bed” selfie from date dude. He looks way cuter than I do, so I don't reciprocate. Get out of bed and heat up a lunch of buffalo grilled chicken and cheesy cauliflower potatoes from my weekly Freshly order. Getting these pre-made meals started out as a way to keep track of what I eat, but it's become a convenient way to optimize my life towards doing something more interesting with my free time than cooking since I rarely get home from work before 7 and I try to be in bed/winding down most weeknights by 9:30/10.
1:30 p.m. — Text with O. about our plans for later. She mentions wanting to get a pedicure and I invite myself along. I only started getting manicures and pedicures this year, but it's been a nice little indulgence every couple of months. My other friend, Q., who invited me out to a drag queen NYE show in Bushwick, texts me to tell me to come over around 7:30/8, so I apologize to him for being flakey and not letting him know I made other plans.
2 p.m. — I decide I want to do a year in review post on Instagram so I look back at the photos I took in 2019 and reflect on my experiences and what events were most significant for me. I had the opportunity to do a bunch of travel for fun (Miami/Key West, Arizona, New Mexico, Savannah, Georgia, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, home to Maryland, California, and Japan) and for work (London, Munich, Arizona, California, and upstate NY). I hiked in places like Zion, Bryce, and Arches National Parks, attempted to get my motorcycle license, had my heart broken by an extremely damaged guy, got two tattoos, and finally began to value myself and believe in my own self worth. Even though I'm just posting this on social media, I finish feeling very fortunate for the experiences I was able to have and cherish the kindness my friends showed me throughout. I hope I've been a good friend to them in return.
3 p.m. — I start on organizing my coat closet since my bedroom closet organization was such a huge success yesterday. I then snack on some weird Norwegian high fiber crackers and unopened gjetost cheese I've had in my fridge for...over a year? It's still good somehow.
4:45 p.m. — Walk to the nail place, which is about a mile away from where I live. As long as I'm dressed appropriately and it's not raining/snowing, I try to walk or bike most places. Meet O., decide I'm doing black on my fingers and toes to celebrate the death of 2019, and almost immediately fuck up my manicure as I roll my jeans back down on the way out. I don't have the patience to sit any longer to get them touched up, so there's half of that money down the drain. $49
6:30 p.m. — I walk home and get ready for NYE. I land on wearing a black blazer, a black mesh top, black jeans, and black Chelsea boots. Yes, in true New York fashion, I do mostly wear black. I complete the look with some light makeup and a fierce red lip. Somehow the face painting turns out well despite this only being the second time I've worn lipstick since prom in high school. Thanks, YouTube tutorials!
8:45 p.m. — O. picks me up in an Uber, which we split. She immediately compliments my outfit and says I look like I belong in the movie The Craft. Gothy/witchy vibes are definitely what I'm going for. Rad. $19.56
9:30 p.m. — We're able to snag seats at the bar. E. isn't working our end, which is a bummer, but it's not like she has time to chat anyway. I'm definitely feeling a little hangry after a strong cocktail, so I order a toasted ham and cheese sandwich and split a Spanish tortilla and cheesy cauliflower with O. H., an older European gentleman she's been hooking up with (it's not a sugar daddy situation at all — despite being nearly funemployed, she's the money maker), shows up and even though I've often found her taste in men questionable over the years, this guy is actually pretty fun to be around.
12 a.m. — E. gives O. and I heavy prosecco pours. Happy new year! I text a few friends and my family WhatsApp group (I usually don't specify, but for clarity's sake this group has my mom, step-dad, and my two half-brothers who are in their 20s). One of my brothers sends me a message on the side saying how proud he is about what I've accomplished this year, which feels super nice. We didn't grow up together (I lived with my dad, who I've unfortunately grown apart from) so I'm glad we've been able to build a sibling relationship as adults.
2 a.m. — O. and I decide it's time to go. E. has hooked us up with a bunch of freebies in the final bill and O. puts it on her card while H., who also works in the service industry, tries to give E. a cash tip that's as much as the bill. I get the Uber, which is insane due to surge pricing, and apparently forget to split with O. When I figure that out later, I just decide to eat the cost since I never actually got her anything for her birthday a week and a half ago. $67.46
2:45 a.m. — The whiskey shot E. gave us for the road definitely kicked in. I blast music (sorry neighbors) while I get ready for bed, and wash my face with Knours Your Only Cleanser, then put on their One Perfect Cream. I tried an insane facial regimen using The Ordinary products months ago and ended up with worse skin, so considering I'm also not afraid of a few wrinkles (I'm 33! It's gonna happen!), I keep things simple now. I finish up by putting some cocoa butter on my tattoos and finally get to sleep around 3:30 a.m.
Daily Total: $136.02

Day Four

9:30 a.m. — Wake up way earlier than I thought I'd be up. I've got a few happy new year messages on my phone from friends abroad, so I respond to them (albeit not very thoughtfully since I'm a little braindead from lack of sleep). I'm super lucky to have genuinely good friends across the US and in a few other countries, but I'm horrible about keeping in touch. I prefer in-person time, but even though most of these people would offer a couch/air mattress/maybe even their own bed, life gets in the way and I don't get to see everyone as much as I'd like.
11:45 a.m. — E. texts saying she's in for brunch even though she got home at 8 a.m., but is ravenous so wants to do 1 p.m. at our usual spot. I'm in, but begrudgingly. I'm going to need a break from social activity, drinking, and rich food really soon. Maybe I'll do dry January (Narrator: she *does not* do dry January).
1 p.m. — E., O., and I are able to miraculously snag bar seats at our (very busy for a change) brunch spot after being told the wait for a table would be an hour and a half. I get a hot banana egg nog (there goes dry January), a fried chicken sandwich, and E. and I share lamb sausage and potato hash. Our total comes to $131 and E. takes my card to pay at the bar (yeah, I'm so lazy I let her forge my signature and everything). I pay for O.'s portion since I owe her for drinks last night and E. gives me her share in cash. $86
3 p.m. — Go to O.'s apartment to drink champagne and hang out with O.'s dog. We listen to a lot of Dolly Parton and decide we need to commemorate our friendship soon by getting matching tattoos. We've affectionately started to call ourselves the “tripod,” which I jokingly claim is because we're just stable enough to support each other.
6 p.m. — O.'s starting to talk dinner but since I'm working tomorrow I want to treat this like a Sunday and get back to good habits. I walk home (I live a little over a mile away from O.) and relish the time to get stuck in my own thoughts.
7:30 p.m. — I eat hummus and pita for dinner while watching The Office on Netflix. I decide to message a guy I matched with on Bumble because he's cute and has something weird in his profile about not letting women see him eat until the fourth or fifth date. I ask him if he eats his food whole like a snake, which he actually responds to, so I keep the weird messaging bit up awhile longer. After some decent banter, the conversation drops off because he stops giving me anything to work with and I'm not interested in doing any more heavy lifting. If anyone's interested, I offer consulting services on what not to do on dating apps.
9:15 p.m. — Pop a melatonin to help me fall asleep and then finally finish purging my dresser of clothes that no longer fit or I know I won't wear. I find a couple of t-shirts I haven't worn in years but have some nostalgia for, so I don't add them to the bag even though I know I should. Then I get ready for bed (facial cleanser but no cream because my hair's pretty oily from not showering today) and put my bird to sleep.
10 p.m. — Back to reality means getting back into my good habits. A few months ago, I decided I wanted to read more books, so I try to read for at least 20 minutes before bed every weeknight. I pick up The Happiness Industry, which I started a few years ago but never finished. I read a few pages but my mind wanders too much so I start a New Yorker article about Roger McNamee (an early Silicon Valley tech investor that's become anti-tech) I saved to Instapaper awhile back. If you're sensing a theme here, yes: I work for a big company and live a life of upper-middle class excess, making me your standard "East Coast liberal elite" lefty hypocrite.
Daily Total: $86

Day Five

7 a.m. — Ugh. Getting back to normal life after the holidays is going to be rough.
7:50 a.m. — Finally get out of bed twenty minutes later than I'd let myself on a normal workday. Feed the bird and sweep the area around his cage while waiting for the water kettle to boil. I make coffee and eat some cereal while listening to an older episode of the Why Won't You Date Me podcast.
9:10 a.m. — Shower, get ready, and I'm out the door to go into the office for the first time in a week and a half. I'm running about 20-30 minutes behind my typical daily routine today.
10:05 a.m. — Wow, the train really chugs along when it's at like third capacity of a usual weekday! This might be one of the quickest commutes I've ever had. I get into the office a few minutes after 10 and am surprised by how many folks are in. Our last new team hire (we've had like five new people join in the past few months) is in today and introduces herself, and we chat with another new hire who started last month. For whatever reason, I turn really salty when they both go on and on about living in Manhattan/close to the office. I need to get it together and stop being an ass. Sheesh.
12 p.m. — I have...not been productive this morning. I spent a lot of time responding to easy emails instead of tackling project work and then distracting myself by trying to figure out what updates (if any) I need to make to my tax withholding in 2020 to avoid a huge bill like I got after filing my 2018 return ($16,000!!). I'm also a bit frustrated that I missed the deadline to funnel more of my bonus to my 401k (it's currently set so to save 70%, but I was trying to up it to 80%). This then inspires me to update the Google sheet where I keep track of my ongoing monthly expenses and I discover that I've let too many subscriptions build up. While I usually net out with around $2,000 leftover in disposable income each month (and this week is not a typical reflection of my spending habits), I know I need to sit down and reevaluate my expenses soon.
1 p.m. — I grab some General Tso's tofu for lunch. Free food is one of our many work perks and I'm feeling particularly grateful for it today after hemorrhaging money for the past few weeks. While eating lunch, I print out a return label to send back two over-the-door iron/ironing board hangers I got from Amazon. After the return shipping fee, I should get a $13.57 credit to my account. I grab a coffee and a bite-sized Tony's Chocolonely on the floor where I sit.
4:30 p.m. — Man, I just can't focus. But! For the first time in months, I have no unread emails in my inbox. I generally think inbox zero is more a productivity trap than an admirable goal (plus it'll go to shit as soon as everyone's really back next week), but having everything triaged and labeled makes me feel like I've accomplished something.
5 p.m. — I check my phone and see that I've got a text from some friends asking if I want to see Little Women at Nitehawk on Saturday afternoon. The trailer made me cry so obviously I'm down.
5:30 p.m. — I leave my computer at the office. I told myself I could only work from home on Friday if I got everything on my work to-do list done. I didn't, so no reward! I stop by CVS to pick up packing tape and then the grocery store by my subway stop in Brooklyn to pick up whole wheat pita, hummus, black trash bags, Swiffer duster refills, and Swiffer wet sweepers. $38.43
6:40 p.m. — Take out my trash/recycling (and slice open my thumb on cardboard, awesome), assemble a new shoe rack for my entryway, tape up the boxes I need to send back to Asos and Amazon, and make a salmon poke bowl for dinner. I eat it while watching The Office on Netflix. Date dude texts, but I'm not feeling like keeping up a texting conversation right now.
7:45 p.m. — What I lacked in discipline at work, I've more than made up for at home and now it's workout time! I'm lucky that I have a gym in my office and apartment building, but prefer working out in my apartment when I can. I do a few minutes on a balance board then a 15-minute HIIT kettlebell/bodyweight workout from HasFit on Youtube. Afterward, I drink a chocolate Muscle Milk and eat a FitJoy protein bar to make sure I hit my protein goal for the day.
9 p.m. — I venmo my friend, C., the money for the movie ticket and get ready for bed. I read a little of the same New Yorker article from yesterday (it's long!) but I'm fading fast and am asleep by 10:45. $16.50
Daily Total: $54.93

Day Six

7 a.m. — Nope. Yell at my Google home to snooze twice.
7:50 a.m. — After lounging in bed and looking at Instagram and Imgur on my phone, I finally get up and do my morning routine (feed bird, make coffee, eat yogurt) while listening to the new Why Won't You Date Me. I'm a little sore from the workout last night and my throat is feeling a little scratchy. I hope I'm not getting sick.
9:20 a.m. — Out the door and in the office in 35 minutes, which I definitely think is a record. Drop off my Asos package in an outgoing mail bin (should get a $111.69 refund) and start plowing through my work to-do list.
11:30 a.m. — Time for a small work break. I book a Zipcar for tomorrow morning to make my Goodwill run. Apartment organization is complete once this is done!
1 p.m. — More General Tso's tofu for lunch! When I get back to my desk, I see that my manager, who is supposed to still be out, is responding to emails. Hark the herald sad trombone sings: the holidays are officially over. I grab a coffee and a chocolate, run into a product manager I haven't seen in a while and have a quick chat, then resolve myself to (finally) getting something tangible accomplished.
4 p.m. — Feeling pretty pleased about the chart I've created to track the projects I need to drive this quarter, but already feeling a bit stressed by all the work. Since I haven't actually talked about my job beyond slacking off and looking at email: I do commercial product strategy, which means I alternate between wearing a technical hat (ie, making sure our sales teams know how our products work and making sure they can sell them) and a business hat (ie, help the product team built something that solves a market need).
5 p.m. — I steal a big Sour Patch Kid off a colleague's desk (I was told they were free game!) and head out. I return a pair of jeans that were too big to the AllSaints near my office ($105 refund) and take the subway home. Date dude texts me telling me about his Friday night plans and I'm not sure if he's fishing to do something or not, but three dates in a week seems a little excessive? I don't respond for a while, which I guess means I'm playing a game?
7 p.m. — I eat one of my Freshly meals for dinner (breaded chicken with butternut mac and cheese and green beans) while watching the movie Frank on Hulu. I'm a little in love with Domhnall Gleeson after seeing the most recent Star Wars flick, even though he's in no way my type. After eating, I open my bird's cage door and he flies over to join me on the couch. He's in a much better mood this evening and keeps pushing his head into my fingers to make me pet him. Quick PSA: Parrots are very difficult pets and I don't recommend most people own them. I've had my dude for 11 years. He could live another 20-30. It's a commitment, y'all.
10:45 p.m. — I recently decided I want a new goal to work towards, so I bought an entry-level electric guitar. Between holiday parties and going home to see my family, it's been a few weeks since I've practiced. I warm up with spider walks for five minutes and then work on G to D to A to C chord progressions until my fingers start to hurt. I do feel like I'm getting a little bit better!
11:20 p.m. — Time to call it a day. Wash my face, brush my teeth, put the bird to bed, then dick around on my computer (which I only bring into my bedroom on the weekends) until I fall asleep around 1:30 a.m.
Daily Total: $0

Day Seven

8:30 a.m. — I should've gone to bed earlier, that was definitely not enough sleep for a Saturday. But I wanted to have enough time to eat breakfast (high fiber cereal and coffee), listen to a podcast (an older Why Won't You Date Me), and shower before picking up the Zipcar.
10:30 a.m. — Out the door to go get the Zipcar. It's warm out for January in New York, but incredibly foggy and spitting rain. I drive back to my apartment, load four large bags of clothes and linens, grab the Amazon package I need to return, then drive to the Goodwill in downtown Brooklyn. It takes me three tries to parallel park (I wasn't great at it when I owned a car and since I haven't owned a car in 12 years, it's not like I get many chances to improve this skill). I'm told they don't take linens, which sucks because it said they did on their website. I'm feeling a bit stressed now because that's two bags I need to find some alternative for getting rid of. I extend my Zipcar reservation, drop off my package at the UPS store, then decide to just toss the linens. I'm not happy admitting this since they were good quality items and basically new, but if I don't do something with those bags today while I'm riding this manic wave of productivity, they'll sit in my apartment for months. $26.75
12:50 p.m. — My anxiety spikes a bit, so I decompress on my couch after dropping the car off and eat a FitJoy protein bar (yeah, I do treat protein bars a little like candy bars, because they totally are). Getting from my apartment to the movie theater on public transit is doable but awkward and I miss my window to get the train, so I call a Lyft since I've got a 25% promotion ($13.71 with tip). My friends C. and Q. message me that they're running late, so I go find our seats in the theater and order a coffee. $13.71
4 p.m. — Little Women is so good. I resonate really strongly with Jo (the independence! the strong will!). Q. and I split the bill for the food ($29.40 + tip) — we both ordered Beyond Burgers and fries and we split tater tots and queso. We decide to hang out a bit more and C. suggests we hit Public Records, which I've wanted to check out for a while. We hop on the train and as soon as we get there I'm in love — amazing space, all the employees and patrons are beautiful and stylish, the DJs are spinning 60's rock and jazz albums, and the cocktails are amazing. I see a disco ball on a shelf and feel a compulsion to buy one on Amazon ($11.99, taken out of my credit). We have three cocktails each (I get: blood orange/mezcal, a variation on an old fashioned, and a cachaça/pineapple special) and leave when they tell us they need the table back. We split the check three ways ($38.33 + tip). $81.73
6:50 p.m. — We decide we want to keep hanging out so walk to a Korean place called Insa after seeing too many children hanging out at our first choice, Three's Brewery. C. is trying to explore more Asian foods, so I insist we get tteokbokki (my favorite). We also split fried veggie/kimchi dumplings, steamed pork dumplings, chicharron, and the free banchan that comes with the meals. Throughout the course of the evening I drink two sakes, a red ale from a local brewery (Strong Rope), and two Hitachino Nest White Ales, which I split with C. The more we drink, the more tension between C. and Q. starts to surface. I had no idea their friendship was so rocky. Since they're both a few years younger, I try to use the time when one of them is in the bathroom to listen to their issues and give them some advice. While C. seems to appreciate it, she ends up leaving first after some disagreement about splitting the check with Q.
1 a.m. — After C. leaves, Q. and I end up having a bit of a heart to heart about his friendship with C. He lashed out at me a few months ago when we were drinking with a group of friends and said something that I wouldn't typically tolerate from a friend. We ended up having a good chat where I told him what I expect from friendship and encouraged him to be a bit more self-reflective and to communicate his boundaries better in social situations, rather than bottling up his anger when people make fun of him (which he has a habit of encouraging). I've struggled with these things in the past, so being able to act sort of like a mentor has been really fulfilling for me, although I'm still working on how to not come off as condescending or judgmental. We split the check ($73.49 + tip) and then I get an Uber home ($12.24). $100.73
1:30 a.m. — I get home and snuggle with my bird for a few minutes before putting him to bed. I follow pretty quickly myself and am asleep by 2 a.m.
Daily Total: $222.92
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