Welcome to Spending Notes, where we do a weekly deep dive into how our readers spend their cash.
Today: an engineer who makes $75,000 a year
Location: Cocoa Beach, FL
Salary: $75,000 (approx. $2,885 per pay period)
My job is pretty high-stakes, so I typically work through my lunch hour. Today, though, I’ve another errand to accomplish! I recently bought my first house, and it’s close to perfect. But it needs a roof replacement pretty badly. I order a salad to munch on while I search and come across a nearby roofer. They specialize in roof repair in Merritt Island, FL, but serve the Cocoa area, too! I shoot them a quick message on their contact form, stab the last few pieces of lettuce with my fork, then get back to work.
I’ve been living here in Cocoa Beach for about four months now, and I’m still not used to the weather. I grew up in Minnesota, so this is a whole new world! Fortunately, the house has a pool, so I can lounge by the water every weekend. The sun can make that a bit difficult, though. I was telling a colleague about my struggle, and they recommended Sun Defender’s floating shade for the pool. It’s a floating umbrella that helps to block the sun’s rays. Pretty cool! For now, though, I’ll stick to hanging out indoors. I call this girl I’ve been seeing, and she comes over to split a pizza and a bottle of wine.
It’s another long workday, but I thought ahead! I’ve brought my shopping bag along to stop for groceries on my way home. If I grab some essentials tonight, I won’t have to spend my weekend buying groceries. Smart, right?
I get up early so I can stop and check my PO box before heading into work. My grandparents sent me a note and a check—I call them on my way in to say thank you and check-in. None of my family members live in Florida, so it can get a bit lonely. These calls help keep me from missing them too much. Gran reminds me that my dad’s birthday is coming up, so I make sure to order a gift. It’s kind of sad to see the shipping method and destination going so far away, but I know he’ll enjoy his new graphic T-shirt and sweatshirt.
We get every other Friday off at work—we work hard enough the rest of the week! It’s extra lucky this week since I’ve got a doctor’s appointment on the calendar. I don’t have any kind of nagging medical condition, but I haven’t gone in for a checkup since before the coronavirus pandemic began. I get a clean bill of health—just a reminder to watch my sun exposure since this is a new climate for me—then pay my co-pay and head home.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my work. I have a great job and I’m all too aware of my privilege being a female engineer for a major organization. I’m still grateful for weekends, though. We work long hours, and it’s tiring! So I decide to make today a lazy day. I order some food for delivery and scroll through HBO Max and social media simultaneously.
No one told me that being a homeowner would come with so many side jobs! Today, I’m off to the hardware store for some supplies to clear my gutters of debris. It’s a simple repair, supposedly, but I’m still pretty intimidated. I stop on the way home for a sandwich and dig into some research on the best way to get those gutters sparkly clean.
Total for the week: $256