A Week In Minneapolis, MN, On $10/Hour

Welcome to Money Diaries, where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking millennials how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last dollar.
Ahead of National Twins Day, we present Twin Week, where we’re tracking the spending of five sets of twins. Just because twins share the same DNA, doesn’t mean they share the same money habits, so we thought it’d be a fun experiment to compare and contrast the way millennial twins are saving and spending. Here’s a set of twins living in Minneapolis, MN, and New York City, respectively.
This diary: a production intern working in film and TV who makes $10/hour and spends some of her money this week on Cheez-Its. Her sister is a video intern/store associate.
Occupation: Production Intern
Industry: Film & TV
Age: 20
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Internship Income: $10/hour
Additional Income: ~$100/month for museum work and $100-400 for dog sitting
Monthly Expenses
Rent: $0 (I'm living at home this summer, but will start paying rent ($775) for an off campus apartment in September.)
Student Loan Payment: $0 (Since I haven't graduated yet.)
MoviePass: $9.95
Spotify: $4.95
New York Times: $4
Netflix, Hulu, HBOGO: $0 (I use my parents' accounts.)
Gym: $0 (I'm using my parents' membership for the summer.)

Day One

8 a.m. — My alarm goes off and I snooze it a couple of times. I've become very good at rolling out of bed and getting ready in 15 minutes. When I finally get the motivation to get up, I pack cold brew, a water bottle, leftovers from last night's dinner, and a granola bar.
9:15 a.m. — I drive into the city from our suburb. I've figured out that it makes more sense for me to drive into the city than to take the bus, but I can only afford it if it means not paying for parking. My job doesn't have a parking lot, and downtown parking is ridiculously expensive, so I park in a neighborhood with free parking about a 15-minute walk away. I like having an excuse to move around, especially going into an eight-hour day of sitting at a desk!
9:30 a.m. — I'm hit with a surprising number of things to do this morning. I've been working at the company for the last three summers, and even though I'm still an intern, I've been in the department longer than most actual salaried employees. However, most days are really slow, and I'm expecting the rest of the day to be calmer.
12 p.m. — I send in the ad I'm working on and take my lunch to eat at the park outside.
12:45 p.m. — Back from lunch. We shoot a video, and my coworker guides me through the process of color correcting.
3 p.m. — The meteorologists at the TV station have declared today a “Top 10 Weather Day,” which means there's free ice cream and soda on the roof. The other intern and I break off to grab ice cream. It's also a coworker's birthday, which means there are even more free snacks in the form of gourmet Rice Krispie bars when we get back from the roof. Office life isn't so bad.
5 p.m. — Out of work, I walk back to my car and meet up with my best friend for dinner and a live performance of Mamma Mia! I'm very excited, especially because the tickets are free! We go to an Italian food hall close to the theater, and I get a slice of pizza and a breadstick for $6.73. We also go to a local coffee shop that has the best cold brew in the state, so I can't resist getting my favorite drink ($3.59). $10.32
8:15 p.m. — Intermission! The show is awesome so far. My friend gets a drink because they're offering cocktails with ouzo, which we've never had before. He lets me take a couple sips. Ouzo is very weird, but tasty.
10 p.m. — Show's over! I'm so in love with this musical. Seeing it live has only made me that much more excited for the movie sequel, which I'm seeing later this week. It's going to be a very ABBA-heavy week.
12 a.m. — I drive home from the city and tiptoe inside so as not to wake up my parents. I live in the basement during the summer, and it's practically like a separate apartment, but my parents are still light sleepers and I try to be quiet when coming inside. I take a shower, finish watching The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and fall asleep to the credits.
Daily Total: $10.32

Day Two

9 a.m. — I'm late and don't have time to make lunch at home. I grab my water bottle and coffee thermos and run out the door.
12 p.m. — Pretty slow morning today. As the token young person in the office, I'm given a lot of the social media-related research, so I spend the morning looking at our reporter's Twitter feeds. I remember that my dad recently won a Starbucks gift card and gave it to me because he doesn't go to Starbucks, so I use it to treat myself to lunch. The total for my sandwich and coffee is $9.88, meaning I have 12 cents left on the gift card.
3:15 p.m. — Most of the team today is off on a shoot, so I'm left with nothing to do. I teach myself Adobe After Effects for awhile before leaving a little early. My summer goal is to become a pro at the Adobe Cloud.
4:45 p.m. — My mom and I hit the gym together, and I run on the treadmill while my mom does the machines. Then I go to a "Core" class. I had assumed that it would be a yoga class, but it actually turns out to be an ab workout class. I try to make the most of having a gym membership for the summer by going at least twice a week, but I've been slacking lately and I'm sure that I'm going to be sore after this workout. Oh well.
7 p.m. — I make dinner with my mom, which consists of turkey, green beans, salad, and leftovers. She's been in and out of the hospital this summer, so I've been making dinner alone or with my dad a lot, and it's nice to eat with her again. We eat and take the dog out for a walk.
9:30 p.m. — After an episode of The Handmaid's Tale with my parents, I decide to go to bed early tonight. I want to try to get in early tomorrow to make up for leaving early.
Daily Total: $0

Day Three

7:30 a.m. — I wake up, pack a lunch of leftover tofu, and get out the door. I don't like leaving this early because I always end up hitting more traffic than normal, but it's not too horrible this morning. I end up getting to the city earlier than I thought I would and decide to sit and read at a coffee shop in the neighborhood that I park in. I'm trying to read 20 books this summer — and this is my ninth! I get a coffee and tip the barista. $3.25
10 a.m. — Work is slow again today, but I'm given the go-ahead to send a voiceover to our VO guy, so we can begin editing the spot together. I have to wait for the voiceover to come back to me, so I read The New York Times while I wait.
11 a.m. — He hasn't sent it yet, and everyone from my team is off on a shoot, so there's no one to bother to ask if there's anything I can do. I eat my lunch.
1:30 p.m. — I totally forgot that I'm having lunch with a friend today! Good thing I ate early and light so far today. We meet up at a Mediterranean restaurant close to my office. She's been living in a different state this summer, and it's really nice to catch up. I get a rice bowl with chicken kabob, lots of veggies, hummus, and a pita on the side. Yum. $9.52
4:30 p.m. — I finally get a new ad to edit! It only takes me around 10 minutes to finish and send it off, but it's still nice to have something to do. I send the spot in and leave a little early to try to miss traffic.
6 p.m. — I'm pretty sore from my workout yesterday. I've also been developing a horrible canker sore, so I've been eating only with the left side of my mouth, which has stressed out my gums and now my entire mouth is in pain. I try to rest, but it just makes everything hurt more. I'm unable to eat the lovely dinner my mom made because my mouth hurts so much.
8 p.m. — I was supposed to go to a movie with a friend, but I'm in so much pain that leaving my house right now sounds unbearable. I send a text off to cancel and my friend is very understanding. I watch the Sense8 finale to get my mind off of the pain and then go to bed early.
Daily Total: $12.77

Day Four

8 a.m. — I wake up and still feel pretty awful, despite sleeping for 12 hours. I'm starting to wonder if this isn't a canker sore at all — I've never experienced a canker sore that's hurt like this and for so long. I decide to call my dentist on Monday if I'm still in pain. I pack a hot coffee, leftover ravioli and green beans, and a water bottle.
11 a.m. — It's a boring day again. Everyone is back from shoots but now in editing mode, so the only thing I can do is watch them edit. I don't like doing this, since I don't learn anything by watching people edit, and it also feels pretty degrading. I help a coworker edit a new demo reel and head back to my desk, where I research some music through music production websites for an upcoming spot. I also create a list of good music on these sites so that if anyone needs music, I can pull out this handy list.
1 p.m. — I finish the task I've created for myself and heat up my lunch. I eat it at my desk while reading my book. It doesn't help that our office is mostly lit by skylight, and it's a rainy day out, so it feels pretty dreary inside. After lunch, I pour myself a coffee (provided by the office) to try to motivate myself to finish out the day strong. At least it's Friday.
1:45 p.m. — I get a dog sitting request from Rover for next weekend! I only started doing Rover this summer, and find it to be a nice way to supplement my income. I'm in major saving mode because I'll start paying rent for my first off-campus apartment in the fall. I normally contribute at least half of my summer income to tuition and school-related expenses anyway, so I'm used to saving up, but I worked three jobs (and freelance gigs) last summer and completely forgot how much I make while only working one full-time job. I'll definitely be fine, especially since I'll most likely be working part-time during the school year, but Rover gives me some wiggle room and helps to ease my stress when it comes to money matters.
4:15 p.m. — While scrolling through Facebook as a break from After Effects, I hear the tragic news of friend's unexpected passing. I spend the rest of the day in a fog and dip out at 5.
5:30 p.m. — I come home and eat dinner with my parents. Then we drive to the local movie theater to get tickets for the 9:45 p.m. showing of Mamma Mia 2. MoviePass only works when you're at the movie theater, and we want to make sure we get tickets! I buy two tickets for my best friend and his mom ($25.78), and he pays me back for them.
7:30 p.m. — I still feel very weird and in a fog from today's bad news. To get my mind off of it, I decide to make focaccia! I've never made it before, but I expect it to be a calming activity. After making the dough, I put it in the fridge to chill overnight.
9:45 p.m. — We meet up at the movie theater with my best friend, his mom, one of my closest high school friends, and my parents. It's a family gathering.
12:30 a.m. — Show's over! It was an incredible experience. Mamma Mia was extremely important to me this last year at school, and the second one doesn't disappoint. ABBA will always be my feel-good music.
Daily Total: $0

Day Five

10 a.m. — I'm up! It's nice to sleep in. I feel a lot better (canker sore wise) and want to make myself a luxurious breakfast. I make a breakfast sandwich with a fried egg, parmesan, cucumber, radish, and hummus. It's very good.
11:45 a.m. — Our gym offers two free one-hour sessions with a personal trainer, and my mom and I decide to take up this opportunity. We meet our trainers at the gym and get started. My workout actually is less of a workout than a stretching session, which I'm a little disappointed by, but I genuinely had no idea how to healthily stretch and it ends up being very helpful.
1 p.m. — My focaccia dough is ready to be made! I pop it in the oven and read my book while I wait.
3:30 p.m. — The bread is incredible. Relatively easy to make, and drenched in olive oil, rosemary, and salt. What could be better than this? I cut a few slices for myself and revel in pride.
4:30 p.m. — Some of my high school friends have asked me to help with a film shoot tonight, and I happily oblige. I fill my car with gas on my way over to their apartment. $35.52
10 p.m. — Shoot's over! It turns out amazing. We mostly just played around with some of their new equipment, and their new camera rig is off the charts.
10:45 p.m. — Back at their apartment, we smoke weed before I realize that I haven't eaten a real meal since breakfast. I try to rally the crowd to order pizza, which is pretty easy in an apartment full of boys. They pay as part of the shoot budget.
1 a.m. — They've set up VR in their apartment and play with it for awhile. I'm too scared (and high) to play it myself and mostly just watch in awe and amazement. I realize the time and drive home. I watch an episode of Nathan For You before falling asleep around 2.
Daily Total: $35.52

Day Six

11 a.m. — Oh, the glorious weekend. Sleeping in is always nice. I sit in my bed a little while on my phone before I find the energy to actually get up.
11:45 a.m. — My mom has an idea to make a morning omelette, but we discover we only have four eggs left. I volunteer to go to Target and pick up supplies for the family. I get three cartons of eggs (we eat a lot of eggs), paper towels, strawberries, and lactose-free milk. I use my mom's Target card to pay.
1 p.m. — After a great brunch (omelette with mushrooms and a side of my focaccia), I decide to spend the rest of the day in a coffee shop. I haven't made great progress on my book this week and need to devote a couple of hours to it. I treat myself to a shaken honey lavender iced latte. $5.57
4 p.m. — I forgot the coffee shop closes at 4 on Sundays, and I'm kicked out, but I read a good 100 pages and feel good. I drive home and make myself a smoothie of frozen fruit, tahini, and coconut milk. It's great, but I always forget that I like smoothies on paper but don't actually enjoy drinking them in reality. I offer the rest to my mom.
7 p.m. — I help my mom make dinner — cold cucumber soup, potatoes, green beans, and a lamb shoulder. I don't take for granted how well-fed I am at home and try to make the most of it!
9 p.m. — We watch an episode of The Handmaid's Tale. It's extremely stressful (but very good) as always, and then I go to my room in the basement. I take a bath, watch Even Cowgirls Get The Blues, and fall asleep around 11.
Daily Total: $5.57

Day Seven

6:30 a.m. — I am somehow awoken very early and can't get back to bed. I could go to the coffee shop and read before work, but my bed is much comfier. I read my phone for about an hour before getting up and ready for the day. I pack lunch (leftovers) and a hot coffee, and leave around 8.
9:30 a.m. — Work is slow. I get a coffee from the office kitchen and return to my desk to scold the VO guy over email about not sending the voiceover yet. It's getting frustrating.
11:30 a.m. — Lunchtime! I realize I didn't pack that much food today and will probably end up getting hungry later in the day. I eat at my desk.
1:30 p.m. — Alright, I'm hungry again. I find a dollar bill and head to the vending machine to get Cheez-Its. $1
1:45 p.m. — While eating my snack, my older sister texts me and invites me to a Mitski concert this fall. We live in the same city during the school year, but rarely see each other because of our opposing schedules, so I'm excited for a built-in opportunity to hang out! Plus, I've been very into Mitski this summer. I buy two tickets, and she Venmos me for hers. $31.75
4:40 p.m. — After a slow day, I dip out of work and head home. My focaccia is calling my name.
5:30 p.m. — I have a meeting with the family of the dogs that I'm sitting next week. They're a very convenient five-minute drive from my house and the dogs are so sweet. I always meet the family first before my first time sitting the dog.
6:15 p.m. — At home, I decide to mess around with more culinary creations and create a rosemary simple syrup for my cold brew. I pour a cup and high five myself. This would probably be tastier in an iced latte — the cold brew is just a little too weak and I think espresso and rosemary would blend perfectly. I make a mental note to remember this simple syrup when I'll be working at a coffee shop next semester and can steal espresso from work!
7 p.m. — My parents and I eat dinner together, and then they leave quickly for a play they got free tickets for. I do the dishes and take the dog out for a walk.
8:30 p.m. — I write a portion of a script for a short film that I'm working on and cuddle my dog. It's a chill evening at home alone and I fall asleep around 11 p.m.
Daily Total: $32.75
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