Many of us in today’s society, no matter where we are in the world, are looking for that little extra cash, for a wide variety of reasons. Each and every one of us has deep personal reasons and needs to earn just a little more money. No matter our current income situation…blue collar job, unemployed, well paying career, stay-at-home parent, on welfare, disability payments, and many other ways…we want, need, desire just a touch more cash.

I am no different. Just like you, I am an average person needing more income, no matter how small, to supplement my current two income household. Despite actually having some what decent paying jobs, we still struggle from paycheck to paycheck.

I have thought on this often. Get a second job. Find a better paying job. Have a job that is guaranteed to be on-going and steady. All viable options, but not feasible at this point in my life. After joining a group on Facebook called The Busy Budgeters, I learned of another option, one that has many ways of going about (a few of which I’ve considered before), with a term or “name” of it’s own.

Introducing: Side Hustling. What is it, you ask? This is where you do small side money making, income producing options. There are many, many ways of doing side hustles. Below I list a few that people on the The Busy Budgeters have discussed, considered doing, or actually done.

  1. Donating plasma
  2. Online surveys
  3. Selling online (eBay, Amazon, Facebook)
  4. Selling on Etsy
  5. Blogging to make money
  6. Selling at local farmers markets (plants, vegetables, fruits, handmade items)
  7. Vendor shows
  8. Local fairs
  9. Garage sales
  10. Coupons and sales shopping

These are seem to be the basic 10 that people do or consider doing at some point when researching how to create a bit of extra cash.

I recently decided to do some of these myself and am currently in the process of working on them and getting things organized and set up. I’ve decided on the following for sure:

  1. Blogging to make money: The Happy Spin Gazette
  2. Create an Etsy store: Happy Spin Craftology
  3. Sell on Ebay: still learning about this one. I do have a store, but need to work on it a bit before posting a link.
  4. Online Surveys: the only one I have ever done that I liked was BzzAgent, which I will be getting back in to next week.
  5. Vendor/craft shows and local fair events
  6. Coupon and sales shopping: I have done this before with some success
  7. Farmer’s Market: this is tentative as I need to plan and create a garden, which takes time and money that I do not have right now.

(If you have any issues with the posted links, please let me know.)

Two things I have discovered in the last month researching and planning side hustle ideas are these: ORGANIZATION and TIME are important and need to utilize efficiently. If you don’t already, I suggest creating a basis for a plan to organize your projects and time. Set up an “office” area and find a planner that works for you, even something to just get you started until you find a work space and planner that will work better for you. One tip I learned in my research and that I already do when cleaning house…use a timer. Set it for a predetermined amount of time for each task on your list for the day. When it goes off, stop that task and move on to the next.

Side hustling can seem like a lot of work and it does require work. Even so, it does not have to take up all your time and energy. Start off small or test several to see what you like. I feel that this is a good way to earn an extra income without completely wearing yourself out. You can control how much time and work that is put into it.

I say good luck to us all in our adventures to achieve the financial goals we have set for ourselves. We can do this!

Sigh. Long, kick myself-do something about it…sigh.

Have you ever had a wake up call for a wake up call that you’ve had before? You know those wake up calls you get about some fact or situation about your life, but for whatever reason you put it on the back burner and forget about it? Then later on down the road you get a wake up call for THAT previous wake up call?

Yeah, well, I got one of those this past week at work. I let it roll around in my head for a few days, told my husband (Scott) about it…which he decided to be a goofball and tease me about it for hours. Ugh. Then tonight, Saturday, March 4, 2017, I’m sitting here listening to music on YouTube, looking at these good looking women, thinking how I wish I looked even half way decent as them. I’m not talking the super skinny women, but the ones with a bit of meat on them, but still toned and in shape like a woman.

What was my wake up-wake up call? I had a customer come in to the not-for-profit resale shop that I work at and conversate with me for a bit. She then asked me, “When are you due?” Sigh… I’m not pregnant. I’m just fat and a bad sloucher. She apologized and told me that I looked really pretty that day. (I had for once, in a rare moment, put on jewelry and touch of lipstick). She then left, but I sat there and mulled this over in my head…for days.

A few years ago at different job I had another woman, a co-worker, as me the SAME question and it was the same response from me. See it…the wake up call to a wake up call?

I NEED to do something about this. I’m just a bad sloucher & carry most of my fat in the front of my belly, butt, and face. I tend to look about 6-7 months pregnant if I’m slouching. It’s even worse when I’m bloated (like I was earlier this week) or been drinking soda-pop and eating too much sugar.

I know I can loose the weight, I’ve done it before, it can be done. I have the knowledge and the skills, it’s just a matter of actually doing something about it.

Like my brother-in-law, Shea, said once to one of his sons “There’s a difference between motivation and determination.” I have the motivation, TONS of it, but I need the determination.

I think we all end up having SEVERAL reconfirmation wake up calls in the course of our lives on various areas in our life. It’s just a matter of if we listen and take steps to rectify the issue. We CAN and are ABLE to do what we need in our lives to improve ourselves and move on to the next chapter.

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Mud & Race Adventures

Posted: January 6, 2014 in 5K's and Mud Runs

I stumbled (internet style) across this GREAT website. It complies together most, if not all mud runs, 5Ks, marathons, and others, from all over the world in one spot. I have been looking for something like this for a couple of years now. Mostly just one for Illinois, but this is way better. I could, if I wanted, search for say a 5K in New York to do, PLUS plan a vacation around that same time.

I have seen on there a Foam Fest in Chicago area.. Ottawa… that I really, REALLY, want to do. It looks fun and a good way to start off my mud run and races “career”. I’m thinking that starting with something fun and a bit “easier” than say Warrior Dash is the way to go. I’m still out of shape (despite myself) and best to go at it slow.

Yes, these races are expensive… but so is any hobby… indoor or outdoors.  It will be worth it and motivational.

http://mudandadventure.com/    This the website for you all to check out!

Repurposing Belts

Posted: January 6, 2014 in Arts, Crafts, and DIYs

I was sitting here playing random Facebook games and feeling so bored I was falling asleep, when I hit on the idea to work a bit on organizing my craft items I have.  I’ve got miscellaneous bits that need to be sorted into containers for easy finding instead of jumbled into a bin.  I decided to start with breaking down these chain, metal belts I used wear back in my skinny days. I never tossed them because I figured I might get back into them.

Yah, right… LOL. I will be loosing weight, but I’ll NEVER be that skinny again. I don’t want to! 98 lbs soaking weight is unhealthy.

Any hoo… I choose to break the belts down because the individual pieces can be repurposed into jewelry! Larger pieces can be focal points of necklaces, small pieces for earrings and bracelets. I won’t be making any jewelry anytime soon because I don’t have all the materials or even a full idea of what to do, BUT they will be ready to go!

Here are some photos I took of the belts I’m breaking down… (I apologize for the slightly blurry photos. My camera is crapping out and I don’t have a photo retouching program).

Collection of belts I plan to repurpose into jewelry

Collection of belts I plan to repurpose into jewelry

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Another angle (No, I’m not a beer drinker. It’s left over from when my hubby and his brother were watching football this weekend. I didn’t see it until now).

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This one I may NOT break down. It still fits me and is my favorite. It’s brass and needs a good cleaning. If I do repurpose it, it will make several pairs of earrings!

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Started breaking this one down. Rather large medallions. If I had a sewing machine and new how to make my own shells for my Miche, I would use them as decorative parts on the shell.

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First one I started to break down (gold-brassy), but the metal loops are hard to open. May need hubby to do this one for me. Yes, those are the tools I’m using. What I have on hand.

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Close up view of the belts. Those butterflies will make neat choker like necklaces.

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Another close up with my needle nose pliers (straight and bent) and my box for the small bits. I’m saving everything. NEVER KNOW what might come handy!

I had… HAD… gone to bed for the day. For any new readers, I work night shift, so I sleep during the day… enforced vampire-ism, you might say.  I couldn’t sleep at first with fat-fat Charlie begging for my hand to scratch his chin and ears.  My hubby finally got up to take a shower and Charlie followed after.  I was beginning to drift off when Scott, my hubby, comes in and tells me to call my dad to come shut off the valve for the water pipes to washing machine.

I jumped out of bed and dashed to laundry room trying to shut the valves off there… that didn’t work and I didn’t know that Scott had already tried.  I then skittered down the basement step to try to shut it off in line to the water heater, but I couldn’t remember which way to turn it.  Of course, I’m still in drift mode for sleep and forgot about the main.  I grabbed my phone while my hubby went and turned the main off.

I called my mom first because I knew my dad would still be sleeping.  He in his late 70’s, retired nuclear plant security guard, and 3 time Vietnam vet, who spent my whole life taking care of what mattered most to him… his family. The man can sleep in late all he wants, he’s more then earned it.  My mom got my dad up and he came down to assess the situation.  This whole time I was feeling horrible for Scott because I know he desperately wanted a shower after his 3 day hunting trip with no shower.

My dad decided on a quick fix of cutting the pipe that had sprung the leak and capping it off for now.  Which means we can’t wash any clothes, but we can use the shower, flush the shitter, and have clean dishes.  It’s no biggie… I can go to my parents to wash or even the laundry mat.  We can still use the drier, so only need about $4 to use the biggest washing machine and then bring home to dry.  The pipe that needs fixing will be taken care of within the next couple of weeks.

Well, I think I’ll check on my hubby’s crock pot dinner, season it up, give him some loves, and then head to bed again.

I have spent the last few days utterly alone and devoid human contact, except for one less then 5 minute encounter and a 10 hour work shift. It all started about ohhhh, 9 am-ish on Thursday when I felt my hubby cuddle up against me and give me kisses in half awake sleeping state.  I knew he was saying good-bye, but my sleepy, work worn, number numbed mind couldn’t function at that point, the most I was able to say was “I love you, baby.” and promptly pass-out again.  I did get up several hours later to get ready for my last shift of the week and had plenty of human interaction then… to a point.  One has to work hard and ensure a good paycheck these days.

When I got home about 5 am in the morning from my shift, I proceeded to play Facebook games and watch a couple shows on Hulu.com.  I had each one of my three cats take turns snuggling in my lap (Star Baby), on my chest (Charlie), and draped on one arm (Marble).  I did eventually crash in bed for several before getting up again.  I spent some time trying to pull my sleep fogged brain back in to reality.  After which I decided that I was going to be a series of vegetables for the weekend… a radish, a sweet potato, and a turnip… in that order.  Why? I knew I was going to be alone until Saturday night, so I figured I would spend the time being in a lazy, vegetative state.  I did become mildly human around about 3 am to scrap off my car of icy frost for a gas station run for a king size Reese’s PB cups, a bag of Hawaiian Onion chips, and 2 cans of Coke-cola. That’s were my 5 minute encounter came in when the gas station lady asked me the typical questions like “debt or credit” and “you want a bag?”  (Thankfully the girl working wasn’t the former security guard co-worker that’s is working there, else I would’ve been there for a whole day listening to her talk).

At one point late Friday or early Saturday, which ever works for you, I “felt” this presence in my basement, which of course was pitch black.  It kind of creep me out because last weekend Scott had gotten really drunk and was down there for awhile. When he came back up he told me was talking to a “spirit” down there.  Well, I closed the basement door, of course. It usually remains open because it’s all the landing area for the back door.  A few hours later I opened it back up to check the backdoor lock and the “presence” was right there… in the form of my fat, black cat, Charlie! Thank you for freaking your mama out!

I spent Saturday still being lazy, but debating if I shouldn’t do SOME cleaning, but I decided not to.  At this point I was getting mildly lonely and really missing my hubby, Scott. So I waited and waited for him to come home.   About half hour or so before he did get home, all 3 cats started going crazy… dancing up in the windows, meowing at me, attacking each other, chasing each other madly, and so forth.  He comes in the backdoor and they all promptly settle down and look at him in “surprise”, like “were you been?”  Naturally, they got up and started sniffing him, taking in all the outdoor smells… smoke from camp fire, fall leaves, tree bark, cigarette smoke, various animals like deer, squirell, and birds, not to mention the stink of group of men who went unwashed for 3-4 days.

My hubby looked SO tired when he got home from his hunting trip with his dad, oldest brother, and their hunting buddies.  So tired he couldn’t get his gear off and his hands were almost purple.  I took it all off for him, even his stinky socks, then made him a couple sandwiches, and got him into bed.  He told me he did have deer in sight, but it was gone by the time he got his rifle situated.  Even so, one of his hunting buddies, Jack,  got 2 deer and offered him one to take home.  Scott would have but we don’t have the money to pay the butcher ourselves.  They agreed that Jack would take care of it and my hubby would go pick it up from my father-in-law’s later.  Jack also gave Scott a big stick of spicy deer sausage (yes, that sounds dirty, go with it… LOL).

This is my second year being a hunter’s wife.  I don’t mind it one bit.  He gets a guy weekend and I get some extend, mindless “me time”.  At one point this weekend, while searching for a cat, I discovered my hubby had forgotten his hunting jacket, which is one reason he was tired and cold.  I really was hoping he would get his first deer, one a stag. I was going to turn the antlers into something like a candle holder, a light fixture, or a decorative, reusable seasonal piece. Oh, well… next year.  Next year I want to plan my weekend a little better, have extra cash to maybe go to the movies (I was going to go to a local concert, but no funds this time). Maybe I could make it a “girl weekend”… but what I have no clue.

It’s been fun and lazy weekend for both of us, in our own way. Now we go back to being “human” together.

This past June I was hired to Lowe’s Distribution in Rockford, Illinois. I have been busy with my job and adjusting to new life patterns it has created. I really enjoy my job and have been focused on doing well at it. My next step now is to make better adjustments in my personal life and my home.

I’m hoping I can actually keep myself motivated and do these things on schedule and when needed.  These are things I need to do to have healthier and fuller life. I’m still trying to figure out the best way to do all this… schedules, making new habits, mental discipline, etc.

These adjustments are things like working out, eating healthier… the obvious ones… plus, cleaning my home better, dressing nice on days off, quality time with my son, date nights with my hubby, work on my couponing, figure out a budget, etc… the items tend to get smaller and more detailed after this. I tend to over think and over analyze things. One of these smaller items is being more faithful to my blog and cutting back on time wasting Facebook games.

I will also be needing to create lists to help with all this… like things I need to purchase (ink for the printer), steps to achieve large or long term goals (like a house purchase), or even motivational tips. My biggest issue is having a place to keep it all organized… notepad, laptop, date book… ??? … still haven’t found something that works.  It hurts to write too much by hand, but I forget the stuff if it’s on a computer. If I do a binder, I find it to be too large. I will figure it out eventually.

Right now, my brain hit on a laptop bag! Put notepads, binders, journals, etc… all in the bag for a one stop spot! That just might work… I have 2 in the house… one I use for couponing and another I had for a laptop, but a rabbit I had peed on it (but on the outside, might be salvagable).

Well, that’s it for now. Sorry for any misspellings… this was just a quick note. Thanks for reading.