march 2018
Suraya's Monthly Budget Update

Budget Update: March 2018

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Budget Update: March 2018

Professional life = awesome. Personal life = sucks.

Total expenses = scary, but mostly for the right things. Two-thirds of March 2018 expenses went to donations. Almost a quarter went to essentials like business, taxes and rent. The remaining went to groceries, a flight ticket, insurance, public transportation, mobile bill and some miscellaneous items (like a new chopping board to replace the yucky old one).

Two things that happen on a more regular basis now are invitations to events in my professional capacity and increased interest from advertisers to collaborate. You may be seeing more sponsorship posts in Ringgit Oh Ringgit from companies/organisations that want you to know about their products and services. I will try my best to be objective and fair to all parties, especially the readers.

Speaking of readers, thank you everyone who sent lovely notes and emails. It makes me feel really happy to know that my content helped you in your life. I love you, I mean it. Thanks for making my life purposeful. It’s more than what I hoped for when I first started this blog.


march 2018

Yay of the Month:

  • Produced my first (and possibly my last) theatre show. Proud that In A Different Light: An Earth Hour Tribute was a sold-out show. Glad people loved how we did our digital marketing. Happy that we received so much support from the non-theatre world. It will be repaid.
  • Served as a panellist, moderator and participant in a few events. Fun to meet like-minded people. Marion D’Cruz even agreed to be my mentor!
  • Paid zakat and taxes. Stings, but they had to be done. Like last year, I paid my zakat to Islamic Relief Malaysia (writeup) – they give out receipt for tax purposes. For taxes, I paid but still have to sort out the filings.
  • Provided capital for my sister’s business. She was so touched, she sent me the ugliest crying selfies. Lol padan muka siapa suruh hantar. Love you.
  • Achieved the lowest weight in my adult life. Before you ask, I’m on keto.
  • Fintech Singapore listed Ringgit Oh Ringgit as one of the best personal finance blogs in Singapore and Asia!!!!
  • Ran out of protein powder and coincidentally there’s a sale. 100 servings for RM175, or just RM1.75 per serving. The last time I got it, it was RM209. Score!
  • Read two booksBig Magic: Creative Living Without Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert and A Short Story of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. The former encouraged me to pursue my creative impulses for the sake of doing, while the latter covered a bit of everything from quantum theory, geology, chemistry, botany, evolution, astronomy and a whole load of other stuff. Unexpectedly, both taught me that life will simply move on, regardless how big (I perceive) my personal problems are. On a personal level, it’s okay to grief. On a cosmic level, it’s way too small to matter.
  • Inspired to continually tweak and optimise this website. Notably, fixed a caption issue that bugged me for ages!
  • Website traffic improved, but only marginally. Small progress is still progress though.

Nay of the Month:

  • The company that was supposed to do my trust for me (As Salihin) decided that they can’t do the trust after all without a wasiat/will, despite the earlier assurance. Wasted a lot of time with them.
  • In the span of 2 days, I bought 8 games from Steam. Just RM23.74 in total, so it wasn’t a huge amount to waste. But still, my productivity level dropped.
  • Did not quit smoking after all.
  • Overwhelmingly confused by the tax documents CP500. So LHDN will now calculate income tax based on our last recorded earnings and want us to pay in six instalments?
  • For the last 5 or so months, I’ve consistently earned more than USD100 per month via Google Adsense. In March 2018 it went below that amount. Have to step up quality, share-worthy posts.

Things to Look Forward to:

  • Going on a solo trip to Hong Kong. Got a cheap-ish flight in April. Should be fun. At least, a distraction. And something to write about. Now in the process of booking accommodations. Looking for a ‘living in the city’ experience – want to walk around, check out museums, go grocery shopping, meet people. Where should I stay there? Any recommendations and tips for Hong Kong travel appreciated.
  • Dating again.
  • Filing my taxes and claiming back overpaid payments.

I’m hoping for a quiet, reflective, yet busy April. Making an effort to chase happiness. Praying for yours, too.


To read about my past monthly budget update, click here. Graphs are taken from my expense-tracking app Money Lover (review).

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  1. You spent so little on Social, Dates and Food! Does this mean that you don’t eat out ever? *awed but horrified because it sounds so impossible to do*

    1. Mostly cook at home, but I go out too! Sometimes my friends paid for meals while I pay for other stuff, sometimes I’m just there with a drink.

      But must say the keto diet thing have eliminated most outside food options for me. Good for my wallet 🙂

  2. I love you, Suraya but I only visited the blog once a month for its budget update now. Used to visit almost daily/weekly 🙁 I feel disconnected a bit, not sure why ?

    1. Hey Aine, thanks for keep coming back!! Let me know what kind of things you like to read, I’ll make an effort to learn and write more about that 🙂

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