Freezer Chicken, Spin Cycles, and Truck Dudes- how I survived on 67$ in one week in NYC (groceries included).

I was not in a “good way” financially a while back and I think the things I did to survive and the lessons I learned are worth noting. It helped me to realize that even when you’re really financially f*****- there’s always a way out.

 A few things I did to keep my sh** together during these hard times:

  1. Borrowed paper towel rolls from work. I needed them and they were readily accessible so they were just… borrowed.
  2. Borrowed toilet paper from work. See above.
  3. Borrowed hand soap from work. See above. (I’m not a terrible person I swear, just a girl who needed to wash her hands and lucky enough to have a place of work that wants to help her do this).
  4. Washed needed-for-tomorrow-clothes in the bathroom sink. Frankly, the only way it’s different from using the laundry mat is that I don’t have a spin cycle button.
  5. Attacked the freezer. I had so much damn chicken that I had never used. Shame on me.
  6. Ate the same thing every day. Things get much easier when you buy in bulk, and a meal that is composed of freezer chicken and sautéed red onions is only around 2$ (freezer chicken= 0$ and onions= 2$.)
  7. Bought .75 cent coffee at one of the truck dudes instead of 4$ coffee at Starbucks. 3 benefits here: 1. This .75 cent coffee is TEN times better than Starbucks. 2. The truck dudes need the moolah more than Starbucks. 3. I’m just using 3 to justify the fact that even in dire financial straights, coffee is necessary- I don’t care what you think.
  8. Got books at the freaking library. I love, love, cannot-say-it-enough, love books and I need to read ALL of them but for the love of Zeus, why have I always bought them? Besides my nearest and dearest, books only take up space and the library is WAY more amazing then my little brain could have ever conceived; especially here in NYC.


A few things I realized I could do to provide for myself during REALLY hard times:

  1. Eat only the food from work. That way I never have to spend a dime. (I work in a special place).
  2. Shower at the gym. If I ever get kicked out of my apartment (not happening, but still a valid concern) I can pay 20$ a month (cheap gym!!!) like the homeless lady does and shower there every day while still toning my hammis- everyone wins.
  3. Sleep on friends couches. My friends love me and I love them and I’ve seen most of their couches and they ARE comfy so I’d be ok.

 See? Its never that bad. You can always find a “way”.

 The Most Important Part:

I realized that I’ve gotten into this nasty habit of thinking my WANTS are my NEEDS. I do not NEED Starbucks, I do not NEED 3lbs of wild caught Alaskan salmon, I do not NEED to buy the Eat Pray Love CD so that I can increase my multi-cultural listening pleasure.

After this week of spending only 67$- including groceries I might add- I realized how little I NEEDED and was able to focus more on the important things: why am I here? where am I going (metaphorically speaking)? I think we all get so caught up in CONSUMING (to fill some type of void)… that we forget how to be grateful for what we have right now instead of focusing on what we want tomorrow.



3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Nicole said,

    bahahahah! I LOVE you. I had no idea you stole so much from our employer. I must say, you serve it more than they do!

  2. 2

    amandab714 said,

    can you please come over and raid my bookshelves before i end up selling them to The Strand, where I now know you no longer shop? loving this! xoxoxo

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