Florida State University Money Diaries: What I Spent in a Week

By Lexie Pitzen | Photo: Katie Harp

Last year, during my freshman year at Florida State University, I rarely spent money on anything other than school-related items. With a meal plan, I didn’t have to worry about buying groceries, and I saved most of the money that I made at my part-time job. Living in an off-campus apartment is different. This year, my paid internship helps me pay my bills, get groceries, and enjoy my favorite coffee shops. Nowadays, here is what I usually spend a week in Tallahassee.

Sunday — $40

It’s Sunday, which means it’s meal prepping day. The week ahead is crammed, and my Google calendar is a rainbow of classes and meetings; I need to make sure I’m ready. I grocery shop at Publix with a friend to stock up for the next week or two. I buy fruits, vegetables, and ingredients for what I’m making today—naan pizzas, an improvised recipe based off of a college student cookbook.

Monday — $0

After grocery shopping, I want to make Monday a no-spend day. After class, I walk back to my apartment and enjoy a homemade mocha while studying for my mass media class. I make all of my meals at home today: overnight oats for breakfast, avocado toast for lunch, and naan pizza for dinner.

Tuesday — $5

My public relations class and my ethics class are a few hours apart, so I set up camp at the Sweet Shop in between classes. I order my usual—a hot ruby—a heavenly blend of raspberry and chai. It makes my day.

Wednesday — $9

After class, I grab lunch at Vale with a friend. I order a protein bowl with a base of chipotle mac and add mushrooms, chicken meatballs, and a spicy sauce. It fills me up enough so  I don’t have to make dinner. Later, I go to an FSU basketball game. Student tickets are free, so I enjoy the night without spending any more money.

Thursday — $15

Today, I am sick, and it’s bad timing. In college, any time is bad timing for being sick. Today, I have a big exam, a work meeting, and a group project. I power through the day and stop by CVS while walking home. I pick up cough drops and ibuprofen, cringing while I pull out my credit card.

Friday — $0

My class today got canceled, and I am relieved. I hate not working, but I know I need to rest to get better. I spend the day in my apartment.

Saturday — $8

Today I’m feeling a lot better, and I’m spending time with my best friend. We stop at Maple Street Biscuit Company for maple vanilla lattes, and then we head to Bradley’s Country Store for Bradley’s Fun Day. I buy a locally-made artisanal soap as a Christmas gift for my roommate. The event is full of color, energy, and festival food, and the Tallahassee fall weather is gorgeous. It’s a perfect end to the week.

2 thoughts on “Florida State University Money Diaries: What I Spent in a Week

  1. $40 bucks for two weeks of groceries is great! Thanks for the college day throwback; I forgot how different budgeting was when you balanced a part-time job and full-time studies.


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