Now that I have been back for a couple of weeks, I have managed to catch up with many friends but I have also noticed that being social costs money! (I guess I didn't appreciate all of the savings of not going around with friends while we were in Atlanta...). Within the last couple of weeks I have...
- Had a friend who ended up in the hospital (bought card and flowers)
- Had a friend whose child called to remind me it was her birthday (bought a birthday cake). Note: I started providing birthday cakes to my friend's children some years ago. They are from Iraq and had never seen a birthday cake before so after the first cake, it became a tradition for me to bring a cake for all four of her kid's birthdays since she is a widowed mom and her family cannot afford to help her much.
- Met up with a group of friends at the mall (I didn't buy anything while we were shopping but did end up buying a drink at Starbucks and lunch at a restaurant).
- Another friend came to me asking if I could buy a dozen tamales from her friend who was struggling to pay her rent since she had lost her job (bought tamales).
- Have met three other friends at Starbucks over the past couple of weeks (bought three Starbucks drinks for me and one for a friend).
- Went to an early morning meeting for a friend who would be out of town and needed someone to run the meeting for her (bought Starbucks again...out of habit).
- Meeting up with my sister and her kids (this will include gas money for the six hour drive and paying for dinner for everyone, another old habit from when I used to actually have money).
- Turning down a trip to the beach with friends who will be going next weekend (it would be fun but again, I am saving my money for our trip to Japan and this would definitely cost me more money)
- Debating about an invitation to a fundraiser event in Seattle (I used to be a good one to invite to fundraisers because I like helping out where I can, unfortunately, attending these events is expensive!).