working with “student” budget

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Sometimes I find me telling myself that college days would also probably be one of my financially unstable times. But I enjoy being broke or a savvy when it comes to budgeting. I strongly do not believe that money brings happiness, it shouldn’t. It has a lot to do with the feeling involving possession issues but this is another subject we can discuss later.

I have found few ways to not break the bank. I am known for getting things that I want instead of needing them. By time when I really need them, I’d make a panicked videophone call to my parents and beg. Not an exactly good way to sort things out, I know. I am listing all the things I’ve done in order to save extra gravy.

1)  Skin Care: If I had a post-graduate job with a gravy flowin’ income, I’d find myself in the shelves at Sephora and browsing their latest cream. However I have found another way around, and the answer is baking soda. It works fantastic! Me and my high school self didn’t escape my face when I enrolled college for the first time. I was only seventeen and I had bad acne. I tried countless of products labeled with some promising marketing phrases that led me hoping it would tackle my skin problems. It never did. Until two weeks ago, I tried washing it with baking soda. It worked amazingly and my skin is a lot more controlled, the best part? It’s only a dollar or few more. I wash my face every night after wetting it with hot water, then I create a “paste” out of the baking soda with water and scrub then rinse. You’re all good!

2) Body Scrub: When you’re in California or DC, your opportunity to get a nice glow from the sun is great. But you cannot do that if you don’t exfoliate, with that being said– most of scrubs are costly OR packed with unknown chemicals that you cannot pronounce. (usually from cheap products, I’d say.) What I do, I take a bit of maple syrup and mix it with sugar. There! It works very well and not to mention it is delicious! You can use similar products like honey or agave nectar. Here’s a tip– the cafeteria at Gallaudet holds those products! You can easily get a spoonful of honey and sugar to-go then treat yourself to a nice body/face scrub topped off with a steamy shower!

3) Bring your cup: In order for me to survive the semester, I rely on America’s most addictive drug that is perfectly legal (well, sociologically speaking!)…caffeine. I usually like my cup of joe black and bold, but sometimes I’m in for a treat. A soy latte is a bliss for me when I’m at my stressed phases at Gallaudet. I go to the ‘gallybucks’ at the G-AREA in Student Academic Center and bring my mug. You’ll save a couple of cents! It is a small amount of money being saved but your action counts for the mother nature. NOTE: When SBG office hours are being posted, we have an espresso machine and it is for anyone to use! We can whip you up a latte if you wish to!
4) Get a metro card, seriously: You’re in DC and you’re a college student, please do not bring your car. We are blessed with wonderful public transportation. It is not the system that we’re blessed with, the perks comes within. Every Wednesdays at SAC, around 11AM to 3pm– a Metro sales rep will be present at a booth where you can apply for a discounted SmartTrip card. When you’re approved (it only takes ten minutes of your time to fill out an online form and get your picture taken) and you save greatly. You pay $5 for the card and start depositing balances at any Metro location- you ride for half of the price! And yes, again its eco-friendly. You’re saving your carbon footprint and reducing the use of paper.

5) Gettin’ tired of your look? Ask around and look out for some hair-cutting offer flyers posted on campus. I’m very anal with my bangs but I do not go to a salon to get a $15 bang trim. I know some friends of friends’ friend who got some mean cutting skill. I get my bangs trimmed in a manner I exactly wanted for an exchange of a drink or a tip. Most of salons at DC do offer student discounts but I’m not paying $27 if I can get a cheaper cut. You can sometimes find a great deal on groupon.com if you really want to treat yourself.  **A note to those who desire a mini-makeover, talking about beach waves: if you want the beachy waves- do not buy hair products. Just fill a sprayer with water and sea salt (get that from cafeteria!) and spritz all over your hair then blow dry- your prayers will be answered.

6) Craving for a movie night? Rent some from the library, you’d be surprised that they have good flicks on the stock! And it is  entirely free! You can also go to the cafeteria to pack some fun snacks to-go so you can nibble on them while watching the movie. I usually pack goldfishes, ham deli meat stuffed with cream cheese, cucumbers and salsa, and etc. I’ve done this many times when I’m broke and it is very fulfilling.

7) An event coming up: dive in! One of perks with being involved with sbg-sponsored events, you get a free admission. When the opportunity arises, sign up to be part of a committee! For example: Homecoming 2011 is around the corner and they will be asking for students to volunteer with decorations, beer stand, security, and more. You’ll pay in first as a deposit to ensure that you’ll fulfill your duties. After the event, you’ll get your money back only if you fulfill your duties. You may save $25!

I think I want to stop there, I finally finished my summer painting project- meet Lola. And, good night everyone.

Lola and the artist

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2 Responses to “working with “student” budget”

  1. Mona London Says:

    I understand your position regarding money, but unfortunately I can not feel secure and consecuently happy if I do not have money – the lack of money always makes me feel nervous and unstable!

  2. clara Says:

    Mona,

    I completely understand how lack of money can make one feel uncomplete or insecure. I think as a college student, I have the mental siege of being “okay” with that but when I graduate- if I don’t have money by then..I’d probably feel uneasy.

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