How I spent $200: Adrienne Gross, Kelsey Tyrrell and Josh Mogle

How I spent $200: Adrienne Gross, Kelsey Tyrrell and Josh Mogle

We asked three central Iowans how they recently blew $200 to get a small glimpse at young professionals and their money. ALSOFour ways to get your money right


$200 spent February 25th – February 28th:

$7.45, Cafeteria at work for a quick lunch of a burger and fries.

$12, Locust Tap. Bought a few Busch Lights for myself and friends ($8 + $4 tip).

$55, Vaudeville Mews. Caught the Black Joe Lewis show and was feeling overly generous with my tab ($45 + $10 tip). Not entirely positive this was all my doing.

$10.50, Red Monk. Bought a drink for myself and a friend before the show ($7.50 + $3 tip).

$40, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Iowa. Made two $20 donations for friends participating in Bowl for Kids’ Sake that evening.

$5.91, Palmers. All I wanted was that cabbagey-salad thing with ramen in it. So I got some for lunch.

$1, vending machine. After a small lunch, I made a trip to the vending machine for some Sun Chips.

$16.77, Django. Had to check out the Fat Tuesday-inspired lunch specials with a friend! ($13.77 + $3 tip). Did not disappoint. Shrimp po-boy was great.

$7.94, Abelardos. Didn’t feel like cooking or even getting out of my car after a long day of meetings and errands.

$12.70, Joann Fabrics. I am in the process of making a quilt and needed some new scissors and pins for basting.

$5, TouchTunes. I played almost the entire Dirty Dancing soundtrack over the jukebox at Carl’s. (Although this was done earlier in the week, was not charged until the 25th.)

$25.73 (the rest), MidAmerican Energy. Bills, man. Bills.


$200 spent February 25-March 1

$19.29, groceries from Target — stocked up on non-meat dinner options for Lent.

$27.32, dinner date with the hubby at Thai Flavors — we can’t go there without getting crab ragoons.

$55.83, bi-monthly vehicle insurance due for the family. Not my favorite time of the month.

$100, down payment on a new bike to hit the trails with this summer. My husband and I made an agreement to use our tax refund on something fun we can do together, so he bought a bike as well. Winter can disappear any day now!


$200 spent February 22 -28th

$100, Dachschund puppies. Went to pick up one for $100 and ended up with two…BOGO rocks! We welcome Dobby and Kreacher to the family.

$60, Petsmart for puppy all-natural food, training pads, collars, leashes, toys and shampoo.

$40, groceries from Hy-Vee. Ground turkey (not only healthier, but way cheaper than beef), pork butt for Mississippi pot roast, chicken for the wife’s favorite dinner (chicken parm sandwiches), and some other run-of-the-mill groceries.

ARTICLE: How to be good at money

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About the Author

covers young professionals for The Des Moines Register. Josh can be reached at or on Twitter via @joshhafner.

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