It’s been a while since we last talked about money and I just noticed that I hadn’t published a post from back in May. I wrote it because I had a money diary scheduled in my calendar that, evidently, got pushed back. A lot.
Upon reflection, it’s strangely transfixing to read back through my entries because it actually ended up documenting a week during my most successful freelance month this year and to date since I set up ‘shop’ in February 2016.
When I last shared a money diary entry, lots of you were concerned for me. I made almost no money but my outgoings were through the roof. Not too much has changed, outgoings-wise, but I have diversified my income a little more which I think has been key to getting the balance right. And as you’ll see, the story is much different this time round!
Let’s dive in…
Monday 20th May 2019
Kick-starting the week with my commute costs. Manage to spill my coffee (made at home) down my white top. Excellent start. -£15 for an all-day return ticket to London with my millennial railcard. God bless that thing.
I’m still catching the slow train so I get 10 more minutes of me-time, even if it is spent on a train. Harvey won a Kindle Unlimited subscription through McDonald’s Monopoly last month, so I’m tucking in to a completely free read of Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. £0.
Safely in London, and down to the Underground to hop on the Piccadilly line to the office. -£4.80 for the day’s trips.
Lunch at my desk. I meal-prepped last night and have an entire week of lunches prepared. Go me! £0.
For some reason, I feel super faint and not well at all after getting off my train. Costa is still open so I grab a pack of vegan gummy sweets to tide me over, as I have a 40 minute bus to catch. -80p.
Catch the bus home as my parents are away in Europe and I don’t have a lift home. I never drive to the station, just to save petrol and help the environment a little. -£2.30.
Working on the blog this evening and I’ve just noticed four more sales of my e-book! It’s reasonably priced at £8.99, and one sale came from a newsletter subscriber who had an exclusive discount. +£34.17.
Tuesday 21st May
Another day of train companies robbing me in broad daylight. -£15.
Tube fare. -£4.80.
Again, I’ve packed lunch so I pop to reheat it in the microwave and try not to think about the long-term health risks that come with using a microwave five times a week. I made the Orzo with Tomatoes and Bay from The Green Roasting Tin and it is delicious. I’ve found stirring harissa in before adding the tomatoes, etc. really elevates the flavour too. £0.
Just before I leave the office, I double-check my bank balance in the hopes I might have been paid on time. And it pays off! Literally. +£1160 for a recent client project where I produced their monthly copy and content requirements.
Wednesday 22nd May
Train and Tube combo of the day. -£19.80.
Mid-week slump has already hit, and I forgot to pack my usual mid-morning banana. So, a trip to the vending machine it is. Our team go-to is always Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. -40p.
Once a week, I like to make time to take lunch with my girl Sarah. It’s good for the soul but not necessarily great on the purse-strings. However I’m a firm believer in investing in yourself and today, that falls under an essential mate date. -£7.39 at Pret.
After the culmination of Game of Thrones, I’ve decided to keep my NOW TV subscription. Everyone has been raving about Chernobyl, plus I want to get in on the Big Little Lies hype. -£7.99, monthly subscription.
Received a payment (at long last!) for some sponsored blog work I recently created. +£500.
Thursday 23rd May 2019
Train and Tube combo of the day. -£19.80.
To celebrate a good week of paid invoices, I pop to Foyles for a lunchtime peruse. I’m after some new books to read on my commutes and need to replace my copy of A Game of Thrones, which annoyingly I can’t find. -£17.98 on other random books.
Pop to the Co-op to pick up an H&M order I made last week. I picked up some pointed toe backless loafers and the infamous white Mom jeans. Also pick up a Lucozade while I’m there, ‘for the walk home’. -£1.40.
Friday 24th May 2019
It’s Friday, and I always treat myself to breakfast out. I find it kick-starts the weekend feeling. I pick up the LEON Avocado and Halloumi Muffin without the halloumi, much to their amusement. -£3.95.
Receive my fortnightly invoice from Molton Brown. +£1500.
Saturday 25th May 2019
Heading to Brighton today! So we’re walking to the train station bright and early to meet my sister, who has pre-booked our tickets. -£20.
Grab a takeaway coffee for the super-long train journey. Harvey pays. £0.
We’ve headed straight to the beach because, well, Brighton. Everyone’s decided they’re not hungry and head to the pier, but I’ve got Milo in tow – who isn’t allowed on the pier – so we grab some vegan loaded fries from a vegan café on the beach. -£3.
On my friend Lucy’s recommendation, we’re at Lucky Beach for lunch. There’s traditional fish and chips for my cousin, who’s visiting from Malaysia, plus vegan options for Harvey and I. My brother kindly pays for the group. £0.
We’ve hit an afternoon slump after wandering the Laines, heading to the Pavilion Gardens and exploring the town, so we pop for a coffee. -£3.15.
Fatto a Mana for dinner! I’ve wanted to try this place for absolutely ages, not least because Anna always raves about it. But they’re really not prepared for the weekend rush and annoyingly a team member keeps giving away the table that the manager reserved for us. We end up 40 minutes delayed, rushing our meal to make it in time for the train home. It’s my turn to treat. -£48.86.
Sunday 26th May 2019
Blissful, blissful Sunday morning. I never make plans, not really, for Sunday and I’m looking forward to a mega chilled one, particularly as I’m exhausted from our day in Brighton.
Venture out – post-lunch – to pick up our weekly shop. Harvey and I don’t live together, and as such we buy our groceries separately too. £16.24 for my weeks’ worth of breakfast, lunch, dinner and ‘essential’ snacks.