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Tag Archives: March 2012
This has been a seriously expensive month. I’m practically having a heart attack in the corner reviewing the numbers.
Everything happened in March:
- Moving expenses (including hotel and car rental) kicked in
- Taxes to be paid for my 2011 year
- Getting settled in a new place
= ONE BIG FAT CHUNK of my money out of my bank account.
The good news is that I’m here in the meantime:
Not sure for how much longer, but I am loving this city.
INCOME = $7386.35
- Not my true pay, I came in between pay periods, so it’s higher than it should be
- In total, I should expect about $10,000 a month (2 checks) <– check out that American spelling!
EXPENSES = $18, 752.58
Government = obviously that was my biggest expense this month at around $9500.
Happily, I did not pay my estimated $20,000 in taxes because of my charitable contributions and my maxed out RRSPs. I am also including in the Federal tax, Social Security and Medicare deductions in here.
Rent = This is the cost of hotels. I guess I should write the category as “Lodging” or “Shelter”, but … technically, I am ‘renting’, so this stays as-is.
Wardrobe = I gots nothing here. I spent almost $2000 and.. well. Can I just say in my slight defense that I bought a lot on my Wardrobe Wants list, and I replaced my dying ballet flats?
Travel = This is really my ‘Moving Expenses’ category. It was a LOT of dough to check in my suitcases (you have to pay for each suitcase and then if they’re ‘overweight’ or more than 50 lbs).
Transportation = Car rentals. I don’t have a car yet, and I may not buy one. We’ll see.
Cellphone = I also got an iPhone 4 because it was $100 cheaper than the very latest model (4S?).
I was hemming and hawing over a pay-as-you-go plan that (I thought) would be cheaper, but it turns out that American pay-as-you-go or prepaid plans are JUST as expensive.
They’re about $40 – $50, up to $120 if you use the phone every day for a month… and it doesn’t come with anything like a data plan and so on. They CHARGE YOU for each day you ‘access’ the phone, or use it to make a call.
So the iPhone cost me $100 with a 2-year plan (Verizon), and I will be shelling out $70 a month for it.
TOP 5 SPENDING CATEGORIES
NET WORTH FOR MARCH 2012
WHERE MY MONEY IS GOING
Other than in clothes and taxes?
- I pay for things in CAD with my CAD credit card, and get reimbursed in USD
- ….which means I shift my money over from CAD > USD slowly
- Investments — I took out a big chunk of my EF and threw it into investments before I left
All I can say is: thank heavens I have my budget and it’s helping me stay organized, even if it was a pricey month.
The problem with being in a new country, is trying to deal with two currencies at once, and bank accounts all over the place.
If I didn’t keep track of everything that has been happening to my bank accounts and wallets this month, I’d be utterly, pathetically LOST.
I’ve started setting up personal columns to note between the CAD/USD exchange, and it’s been helping, somewhat.
I DESPERATELY NEED A U.S. CREDIT CARD!
I am not going to apologize for this month because I bought some pretty amazing, one-of-a-kind, independent and/or vintage pieces.
I guess I could pretend to vow to eat beans and oatmeal for the rest of the month… but we all know that’s a baldfaced lie, so why bother?
iPhone 4 NOT the 4S!! — $100 for the phone + $30 case
…on a 2-year plan.
Cost $99 to buy, and my monthly plan is about $70 a month (ick). However, this phone has come in pretty handy (it let me book car rentals on the fly for cheap), and I can check all my email accounts at once rather than signing in and out of each account each time.
Fujitsu ScanSnap S1100 — $140
The Fujitsu ScanSnap S1100 Mobile Scanner was originally $190, I had a $50 gift card, so I got it for $140.
It’s a DREAM. I need a scanner far more badly than I need a printer, and I needed a mobile option to scan my receipts, expense reports and documents. A life saver, I tell you.
Marcelle BB Cream – $24 each ($48 total)
From Marcelle BB Cream, it is my new makeup love.
I forgot to mention that I did purchase the Marcelle BB cream last month, and I absolutely love it. I had to buy both bottles, Light to Medium and Medium to Dark.
It turns out, since wearing sunscreen, my skin has faded from Medium to Dark, to Light to Medium, so now I’m just using the lightest shade exclusively.
Now my concealers and foundations are ALL THE WRONG SHADE. Grr.
It’s a wonderful product, and it looks like I am not wearing ANY foundation, unlike Bare Escentuals (skin looks slightly sparkly/shiny, which is better for night), or any powder compact (Stila).
Black Socks — $2
..to cut up and wear in my hair.
This tutorial for a ‘sock bun’ is awesome. I’m rockin’ the sock bun as we speak and it looks like I have four times the amount of hair I should.
It also makes all of my hair buns look so much better. I normally hate wearing my hair in a bun because it’s SO TINY and it looks so strange, but this is a hot look.
Comrags Brady French Stripe Linen and Cotton Dress – $300
This is an item on my Wardrobe Wants list, called: Striped Dress (French/Nautical Style). Now I can cross it off the list because I own one!
Purchased at Comrags @654 Queen Street West, an independent Toronto store (Yelp review of Comrags), the dress is pricey, (my limit is about $100 – $150), however this dress is just so simple, rumpled but elegant at the same time.
Absolutely washable (no dry cleaning!) and did you notice the POCKETS, and the stripes going different directions, looking absolutely fab? It also gives me the illusion of hips, being it’s a tulip-style skirt. YESS!!
Diane von Furstenberg Red Wool Utility Wrap Dress – $136
This is actually an item already on my Wardrobe Wants list called: Red Dress that can now be crossed off
My first ever DvF dress, and I bought it for only $136 at a secondhand consignment store called Haute Classics @ 946 Yonge Street in Toronto (Yelp review of Haute Classics Consignment).
It’s a wool, and although it is a tiny, eensy, weensy bit small, it still fits beautifully because it’s a wrap dress with a stretch in it. Did you notice the POCKETS?
Odille Striped Pursuit Silk Top – $50
Bought this also at Haute Classics @ 946 Yonge Street in Toronto (Yelp review of Haute Classics Consignment), and it was $50 CAD, originally retailing for $98 USD.
Not on my Wardrobe Wants list.. but it was too cute to ignore.
I normally hesitate at tops that go in at the waist because it waist is always at an awkward spot on my body, and then it looks like I’m sporting a baby bump, when I’m not.
This one, is more at my natural waist, it has a section in front to cover any indecency, and the sleeves and overall drape of the stripes, soften my larger, inverted-triangle-body-shaped shoulders.
J. Crew Blouson Dress — $143
J. Crew Blouson Stripe Dress was originally $148, I got 10% off, and after taxes it’s about $143.
In Canada, it’s $172!! So I’m very happy to be here in the U.S. when I’m buying it
I LOVE this dress. I know I said I already bought a nautical French-stripe sort of dress that was on my list (oh and my new top looks nautical too), but this silk dress is a dream. It fits so well, looks fantastic, is going to be belted, and makes me feel so easy and chic.
It is also navy blue, not black like in the photo. It’s incredible.
White House, Black Market Neutral Tweed Flare Pants — $88
White House Black Market Neutral Flare Tweed Pants were originally $98, I got 10% off by being a new WHBM subscriber.
(FYI — If I had no idea about the WHBM brand, I would not have walked in to shop. The store in-person, looks kind of cheap, which is surprising.)
I know you’re going to scoff at this, but I really needed new pants.
These ones are a neutral tweed, but it has faint hints of gold running through the threads which are just gorgeous. I also didn’t want grey, black or navy blue (too many dark pants!), so this neutral colour is perfect.
They fit beautifully, feel like pajama pants to me, and are not too low-cut, as they sit just below the waist.
And it only took me 10 stores, and 3 days to find this ONE pair of pants worthy enough to buy.
Note: This was not a planned purchase, but a required one.
Frankly, I don’t know WTF is going on, but I am losing weight like crazy and I am down to a size 4, but apparently a 2 or a 0 in J. Crew sizing.
At any rate, I can feel that my old pants are far too loose now by about 2 sizes, and I would need to basically pin them closed at the waist to make them fit.
Don’t be worried though. I am not stressed, I am not anxious, under-eating, dieting, and I don’t have an eating disorder. I am still eating a lot, but ever since I stopped eating junk and processed foods, my body has gone back to my high school size, which was about this weight and size.
Elie Tahari Silk Top — $133
Bought at Saks Fifth Avenue on the sale rack for 30% off. It was originally $178 or something.
Keeping in mind my new size, a few of my original work tops are too big.
This checks off the box on my list of wanting a deep, red top to wear. I LOVE wearing red, it’s my favourite colour, and to find this shade, in silk, in such a perfect top, is a dream. AND ON SALE.
Ann Taylor Rayon Top — $78
Fits wonderfully, will be great for hot and humid weather, and isn’t sheer at all (it is lined).
Wearable Art — Vintage Parisian Monet Silk Dress – $295
Purchased at The Cat’s Meow Consignment, an ultra-high end, spendy, vintage consignment store (Yelp review of The Cat’s Meow), this was something that I had to hem and haw over because it needed some tailoring (about $100 worth).
Definitely NOT on my Wardrobe Wants list, but … I couldn’t say no (well, I COULD have said no, if the price tag was at its original $500 mark and that it would still require $100 in tailoring).
It was obviously custom-designed and tailored in Paris (you can tell by the sewing), and the silk is what caught my eye. I am a huge fan of Monet’s Waterlilies (cliche, yes), and this dress made me think of it.
Lest it be a dress that I can only wear to events, I am already planning on remixing it by throwing a sweater over top, some boots, casual belt, and making this silk masterpiece work in everyday life, even if I’m just buying groceries
Oh budgets. You’re so meant to be broken for pretty things.
Yes. All true. It brings me to my following lust:
I can’t justify (yet) buying this amazing leather jacket I fell in love with. It’s this aptly named Perfecto leather jacket in Ink. Super light, a leather shell and it will get soft and oh-so-buttery in a heartbeat.
It’s super light, very minimal, not fussy AT ALL and in a neutral shade that is not brown or black (although I kind of want the brown one too, but am definitely NOT going to buy two).
(Which obviously means that it is all I’m going to be able to think about: having two leather jackets, one in brown, and one in inky blue. ARGGGHHH!!!)