I don’t update my side bar enough. It’s because I’m ashamed to admit that I haven’t been paying down my student loan debt as fast. So I updated it today and there is $14,870 left.
I feel like I have to look at our finances again. You know, combing through every credit card statements, loan statements, bills etc. Even though we generally have an idea how much we are saving and spending, every now and then it’s good to do this. Especially since we have a new monthly bill for our used car now. We are not spend thrifts by any means but doing this keeps us in track. Perhaps I’ll put up our numbers come September.
I met with a friend I hadn’t seen in forever after having Calvin. Though I think what I said to her probably won’t make her want to schedule a get together anymore. I thought I should mention it because it is finance related. I really don’t care how people spend their money. Yes I will judge when they complain because when I say things it’s because my insight is probably something they didn’t think about.
Anyways my said friend was asking me if there was a way to bypass pandora’s ads appearing during music. I told her why don’t you just pay the $3.99 a month to bypass it. I know that comes out to $48 a year but to my family it’s money worth spending because we listen to it for hours everyday. She then tells me she doesn’t want to spend the money monthly. She then starts to down a $12.00 cocktail. Which I pointed out the money spent on a $12.00 cocktail was 3 months worth of ads free music. Yup …. which she downed in half an hour.
In 2016 I contributed financially through numerous income streams. While these are not secrets, and pretty much everyone does it, I figured someone reading this would like to know how I contribute to my family financially. Keep in mind this works for our situation now.
I work part-time as a merchandiser
I like my job because my bosses are relax and they in return respect my worth ethic. It’s not something I would do full time (they don’t offer full time anyways) but if you are looking for a second income I suggest searching for jobs in your area as a merchandiser. It’s also a great way to learn how major chain stores get stocked.
Another benefit is it can be very flexible. The way my company works allows a very flexible schedule. The hours given depend on how many stores they give me but as of now I have 3 small stores. That works great for me since I do take care of my son when my husband is at work.
I sell on eBay as a used clothing seller
The market for used clothing is saturated yet I am able to buy clothing cheap in return selling them for a profit. I do this mostly in between when my husband watches my son, and in between my son’s naps. I do enjoy this for the most part.Working for yourself allows for a flexible schedule but relies heavily on your willingness to find time and motivation.
I’m a one woman show by doing all the inventory shopping, listing, packaging, and taxes. I’m always subconsciously research what is selling and not selling. My phone is pretty much glued to my hand when I’m at the store. It can feel tedious at times but the income this produces puts a smile on my face since it’s MY hard work.
I purge my home of unwanted goods by selling on eBay
I try to make it a habit to go around my house and list things I think can sell. In 2016 it was mostly DVDs, baby clothes, cooking utensils, my wardrobe, books from college, jewelry etc. I also sold gifts I received from people that I know won’t be hurt if I did that.
Dabbled in Swagbucks
This was fun and I only did this when I felt like doing it. I know some people on Reddit who manages to earn hundreds per month but I never got to that point. This year I probably won’t do it so much since I will be working my merchandising job more.
I now bring in $1,000-$1,200 a month doing all this. I know it’s not enough to live on but that is a nice chunk of change monthly. Most of this goes to pay my personal loans (mostly student and credit cards) and my side of the bills ( car insurance ) and my baby son’s food and things too. I’m hoping this year I will start contributing to our savings more.
I never really am a grand opening type of person. When a store just opens they offer things like gift cards & free items. I normally never attend these things due to either work, and me just hating the whole shopping crowd. Which is weird considering I shop at thrift stores and they are crazy busy. Perhaps the whole mentally of people being the “first” is a big shopping mood killer for me. I decided to attend my first one at Burke’s Outlet.
I received in the mail an “invitation” to their grand opening and it included a spend $40 taken $10 off. It also included days they’re offering free gift cards to the first 150 people. Since their grand opening was on a Thursday I figured Why not. Thursday is my husband’s day off and I figure it wouldn’t be so bad compared to attending a grand opening on a weekend. My reasoning is that people normally work 9-5 jobs. Who would go to a Thursday grand opening? Seniors, casino workers ( their days off are a mix bag of weekdays off), and all type of people. At least a weekday grand opening would be a smaller crowd. I stood in line at 8:30 am, thirty minutes before opening. I got my gift card, and I wasn’t surprised that it was only $5 (it was suppose to range between $5 & $50). I purchased:
– Alphabet Floor Puzzle for my son Calvin
– Tux Onesie for my son
-A Universal phone holder for my husband, his birthday is coming up
-For myself, an Olay Microdermabrasion kit
At the register It went from $50 down to $35. It’s wasn’t too bad. Plus I really needed a floor puzzle, and I am enjoying the microdermabrasion kit.
I’m dreading going to Super Crapmart for a number of reasons. I hate couponing there because the cashiers sometimes don’t know what to do if a coupon isn’t working and they always have to call a manager. Usually at target they “push” my coupons through. Another reason is it’s always crazy busy and the lines can get ridiculously long. It’s also stressful. I don’t know why but it’s just stressful.
I’m going though and I will be baby wearing my son. To lessen the stress I will go early in the mornings when the crowd hasn’t built up ( usually gets busy by 10am). I also have a shopping list organized by the shortest route. Normally I do my major coupon shopping at target & albertsons but this time it’s best to go the super Crapmart way. I call them crapmart for a personal reason. I hate being a vendor merchandiser for them. I could go on and on but that’s blog post.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. The baby market is HUGE and for a frugal momma like me, it can be a little overwhelming. Before my husband and became parents, we agreed we will not fill our house with too much baby products. After months of research, I realize it’s hard not to do that. I’m frequently bombarded with reviews, Ads, and opinions on what I should buy and what works. Our house isn’t filled with baby stuff so much but as my son grows and changes, I’m frequently trying to find ways to save money while providing for him. It’s ok though. I ask the same questions I usually ask when I’m looking for stuff.
Questions I ask myself before purchasing:
- How long will I use this?
- Do I really need this now?
- Can I buy and use this secondhand?
With my son I tend to ask these questions:
- How long will he use this?
- Does he really need this now and in the future?
- Is it a safe product to buy used?
I’m trying to curb my spending since his doctor and specialist list visits are starting to add up.