In November, I was laid off unexpectedly (and illegally) from the company that I had been working for. I am currently in litigation with said company, so I can’t go into too much detail. The holidays are an incredibly difficult time to be searching for a job because hiring managers tend to go on vacation and nothing really gets initiated until the beginning of January. Well as of today I have one solid offer from a prestigious tech company with an office here in New York (though the job isn’t that prestigious) and another job that I interviewed for today that seems promising. Both are in the 30-35k pay range, which is 10-15k under my goal range while I finish school, but I really need to start having an income flow again.
I’m trying really hard to reduce my expenses, starting with my grocery budget, which had previously consisted of $75-100 per week PLUS eating out for lunch on weekdays and dinner a few days a week. I feel that this is a standard practice for Manhattan, but it is an unnecessary expense and very “keeping up with the Joneses”. This week, I’m trying to keep expenses at a bare minimum, and I’ve spent just under $30 and mixed new items with some staple foods that I already had in my cabinets and freezer.
Here’s my current stockpile:
Pasta & sauces – 8 meals
Tuna sandwiches – 7 meals
Cheese sandwiches – 12 meals
Veggie soup – 8 meals
Bean & rice/quinoa – 12 meals
stir fry veggies & rice – 8 meals
eggs- 1 meal
oatmeal – 10 meals
Knowing what is in my cabinets and fridge has really helped me see how much food I have that isn’t being used. My next goal is to cut out soda, which I’ve reduced my spending on greatly, but its an unhealthy addiction that wastes money. I’ve been swapping it out for tap water with lemon.
On a financial note, I managed to get approved for a new credit card from a bank that I had previously closed an account in good standing with. Currently all of my credit cards are maxed out and many are behind and about to be charged off. I’ve learned my lesson and realize that cards should not be used to live beyond one’s means. The only reason I was interested in getting another card was to change my debt to credit ratio and begin trying to rebuild my credit score. My plan is to only use the new card for my reoccurring phone bill, which I will pay in full each month. Once my income starts coming in again, I will save money to pay the cards that are behind, attacking those balances as quickly as possible.