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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Throwing Money to the Wind in Parking Lot

  • After again helping for 2.5 hours at Punchy's school library*, went to nearby Church Street to have lunch and work on laptop until I left about 3:15 to drop off Punchy Rx slips, scoop her from bus and take her to weekly appointment. Panini at excellent Italian Cafe Giotto with tax and tip, $15.
  • Parking deck for 3 hours [meters have 2-hour limit] $6.
  • Java Love large decaf coffee and slender biscotti w tax and tip, $5.76.
  • CVS, to drop off Rxs. Had $6 off coupon, got Punchy As Seen on TV Snuggie Mermaid Tail blanket [half price, so $9.99]; blueberry hemp snacks for Fig; and 4-pack of protein & oats Fairlife drinks for Punch. $16.95.
  • Punch and I had Japanese dinner out w Anne and her daughter Nikki. #friends #girlpower #sushi #bentobox We paid cash to save 10 percent. Our part with tip, $54.
  • Big screw-up: Knowingly parked in a permit-only spot behind restaurant, because didn’t think they check in evening. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t, depending on lot. Ticket on windshield. Basically threw away $35 that I will pay online. Could have parked at meter or for free. Not happy about this.

Total: $132.71

*The school is just for 3rd/4th/5th graders but the library is big [and I think there are 9 fifth grade classes]. So many great books and a caring librarian/literacy specialist. I like the retro parts, like taping call numbers on book spines, Dewey Decimal System for shelving nonfiction, an ink pad and stamper to mark due dates, and big bottles of Elmer’s Glue to paste card pockets inside back covers.

P.S. Still feeling uneasy. Mom antennae up. Plus, other sadness in house. Did apply for job, trying to keep up w that. Wish life were all smooth but it surely has its worries and pitfalls.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

Smooth, rich cappuccino made with exclusive Joyist bean blend
from Java Love. Delicious.
I have my worries today, but felt good to walk w Elly for an hour. Then I worked in town from 3 to 7.  I will walk 20 minutes home. Hope things are rosier in your corner of the garden.

  • 3:15 p.m. at Joyist. One large bowl organic mushroom/zucchini soup and small piece flourless zucchini bread. One cappuccino.  $18
  • 5:15 p.m. at Marcel Bakery & Kitchen, since Joyist closed at 5. Got a bag of 3 giant seeded Jerusalem bagels, $3.95, to bring home [Fig + Punch both like bagels]. Will have ice water, but since sitting here,  ordered a sandwich for dinner. $14.82 plus $1 tip. $15.82
  • It's Tuesday again and I have my sitter from 4 to 7, $13 per hour. [Dan got Punch from school about 2 and took her to ADHD dr appt today, then brought her home.] I have to get out of the house to be productive often/sometimes. My fingers are flying over the keyboard. It gets depressing to be at home and see the peeling paint, dust balls etc in our house, not to mention falling garage and fence that we haven't gotten repaired yet. Heavy loads. $39
Total: $72.82

Monday, January 14, 2019

Beauty Marks

  • Raymond's on Church Street after helping in Punchy's school library from 9:30 to noonish. Scrambled eggs, Cheddar, salsa verde, multigrain toast, home fries. $10.66 plus tip=$13.
  • Java Love to work. Large decaf coffee and slender cherry biscotti, $5.01 plus tip=$5.51.
  • New site, use code for 20 percent off. My roll-on, 24-hour creamy eye shadow stick is getting low, since I bought it at Trish shop on Jobs Lane on my Hamptons day trip this summer and wear it often [every day, until my generous friend gave me a luxe palette in December]. It's hard to get discounts on name brand makeup. So, $13.20 discount, free shipping and $3.50 tax=$56.30. [See images below and prices before 20 percent discount.]
  • Half-gallon almond milk and quart of whole milk, $6.48.
TOTAL: $81.29.

24-Hour Eye Shadow and Liner main image
24-Hour Eye Shadow and LinerCrystal Heather$34.00
Lip Perfector Conditioning Balm main image
Lip Perfector Conditioning BalmLip Perfector$32.00

Sunday, January 13, 2019

The Beet Goes On

I made "brownies" today to scratch my baking itch, using high-quality unsweetened chocolate. Instead of pouring in 2 cups of white sugar as in the big pan of Baker’s One-Bowl Brownies loved by both my mom and Punch, I folded in fresh, puréed organic beets, a little Crown maple sugar and some applesauce. 

I ran out to my book group and told Dan and Punch to take them out of the oven in 15 minutes. I fibbed, saying they were  red velvet brownies. Poor Punchy peeked in the oven and said they looked good.

I didn’t fool anyone, but they are very moist and easy to cut, and vegan. Pretty red velvet tint. I froze the squares, hoping they might taste better chilled?

You win some, you lose some. I didn’t have all of the ingredients healthy recipe called for, including liquid from canned chickpeas, so made some substitutions.

Good night.


  • $43 on groceries. Canned tuna, mayo, organic beets, unsweetened chocolate, 2 packs fresh green beans to steam for book group, bananas and Tate’s Chocolate Chip Cookies, Punchy’s favorite.
  • $10 for 2 raffle tix for friend’s son’s sports fundraiser.

Total: $53.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

It's Possible to Overspend Everywhere

Spent $33 total to get one Rx each for Dan, Figgy and me
 and another $33 because I had the car at the store and
Dan was about to take it to work all night in NYC.
Could have gotten PB cheaper at ShopRite but the rest of the grocery prices were OK. I also got 2 bags of Dr. Teal's Lavender Epsom Salts, a bathtime delight. Should not have gotten the Pringles, even if they were on sale. And the frozen Lean Cuisine chicken parm was a waste, not tasty, but I had a very small lunch before Dan and I took nice [soaring and free] walk at Garrett Mountain with Punch, her friend and Sug. I knew I wouldn't have the car when he left so I kind of panicked and scrambled to buy things, including the eggs.

  • Gas for car, $20.
  • 3 family prescriptions at CVS, $33.
  • Groceries and bath products at CVS, $33.16.
  • The Capital One Bank in our town closed; steep bank fee to get cash at ATM, $3. 
  • Punch & I home alone Saturday nite, no car, Marcel dinner delivery via DoorDash, $32.65 including tip.
TOTAL: $121.81

Friday, January 11, 2019

My City Sparks $pending

Pretty Little Liars?
Foil-wrapped chocolates that allude to the luxe life.
$20 for a box of 44 thin squares in a mix of dark, milk, mint. Bought for the family.
I think the dark ones are vegan, so Figgy can eat them.
Bus trip into NYC to see my friend/colleague--who left Good Housekeeping after 30 years--stimulated my spending. No surprise, I guess.

When I'm in NYC, or another sophisticated city or charming town, I like to buy things that speak of the place. New York City=The best of everything, and not just writers, magazines, publishing houses, plays, opera, dance, clothing, restaurants but also bagels, big triangles of melty pizza, brownies, babka, cookies, coffee, Brooklyn blackout cake. 

Dean & DeLuca has a location right across from the Port Authority Bus Terminal, and I like that, because a lot of the other stuff in the neighborhood is not uptown upscale. I love to peruse the offerings at D&D before boarding my bus back home.

Danger, danger.

  1. DeCamp bus fare in and out of NYC, $7.65 each way.  So $15.30.
  2. Worked on magazine deadline in Starbucks at Port Authority after bus pulled in at 10:30. Got small decaf Americano and chocolate cake pop; $4.59.
  3. Subway to meet friend at restaurant on 10th Avenue near 19th Street [walking from 14th street station], $2.75.
  4. Lunch at bustling, stylish COOKSHOP with my colleague Sharon, a foodie and kitchen equipment pro. I decided to treat her, to honor her after 30 years on the job. We worked on staff together for 10+ of those. The bill was $74.04 plus $15 tip, so $89.04. I did waste $ on one thing and didn't realize until later, when I saw the check and did a double take. I was so busy trying to sidestep a PB chocolate dessert that sounded SO GOOD that I steered to the cheese plate, but the smallest size was $12. That was crazy, because the portion of Calderwood cheese from Vermont and paper-thin-sliced apple was modest indeed. I could have avoided that, had a cappuccino? The waitress said no fresh fruit for dessert. Sharon and I wanted to talk longer, so stretched out our meal w final course.
  5. Dean & DeLuca, the box of individually wrapped chocolate squares, above, and one Amy's caramel fudge brownie, neatly wrapped in cellophane with perfect corners [don't ask, I know], $24.01 total.
  6. Back home, I drove Punchy into town to meet a friend. She had spent her last $20 on hamster chew toys, so I gave her $5.50 spending money.
  7. Figgy watched Punch tonight so Dan and I could go see "Mary Poppins Returns," which I loved and he liked but not as much as the original, which he described as "candy." I don't remember watching the full original and will soon. Anyway, Fig got some gnocchi and other groceries for dinner for her and Punch at Kings--$9.45. I'm not adding the price of movie tix [$12 each] and snacks because that came out of Dan's pocket at the theater. Figgy kindly saved us on babysitting money or that would have been another $13 per hour for three hours.
TOTAL: $150.64

Thursday, January 10, 2019