Should I have stretch goals?

Happy Monday everyone!

I’m slowly settling back into home after a long month of travel. In fact, right now I’m in bed with my feet tucked under my housemate’s dog…which is a good thing since last I looked it was around 7 degrees (farenheit) outside. Brrrrrrrr. Yesterday I made bread and went to church, and today’s agenda includes such exciting action points as “do laundry” and “write blog post.” It does not include anything like “buy plane tickets.”

So what I’m saying here is the cozy factor is through the roof around here. Naturally, this state of affairs led to an hour Saturday evening which caused me to tweet this:

Continue reading “Should I have stretch goals?”

How I’ve Been Earning (a pretty small but non-zero amount of) Extra Cash Online

Last summer, I spent a lot of time trying to find decent-paying ways to increase my side income. Babysitting is an evergreen for me, but I was interested in finding ways to branch out: ways that didn’t require basically setting up an entirely new business (I had some thoughts about freelance writing and editing, but in practice I have not wanted to dedicate the time and energy needed to get that off the ground.) After my minor financial disaster in March, I’m newly revved up on making a little extra cash; even a hundred dollars a month goes pretty far, you know? Continue reading “How I’ve Been Earning (a pretty small but non-zero amount of) Extra Cash Online”

Rethinking The Way I Allocate Side Hustle Income

When I first started writing this blog, a little less than a year ago, I was really concerned about two things: finishing my debt payoff, and starting to save for retirement. At 35, I felt there was really no time to waste; I’d already missed out on all the big gains of the post-crash years, too, so I couldn’t expect the market to necessarily be much help. (Mind you, it’s helped some; at this exact moment, I’m showing a $750 gain above what I’ve invested.) Recently, however, I’ve realized I need to make a change to my financial plan. Continue reading “Rethinking The Way I Allocate Side Hustle Income”

Tax Time

2014 taxesI’ve been dying for January because I thought I had a decent chance at a real refund this year, for the first time in ages. (Generally I’ve ended up either owing a small amount, or getting a small refund.) As of yesterday I finally had enough documents in that I could start working on them, and even though I’m not totally done yet, because I’m still waiting for one official W2 and one official 1099 to make an appearance, I think, based on my preliminary calculations, that I was right and I should be able to put a healthy chunk of cash towards my Roth IRA. [Can I take one second to be mildly depressed about this, though, because I’d rather blow it on some new clothes. OK, better now.]

Continue reading “Tax Time”

On a more cheerful note

My side hustling plan is off to a decent start! So far I have:

(1) made $355.79 from a combination of selling things on amazon and ebay, watching usertesting.com like a hawk, and skimming a little more than $100 off last month’s paycheck. I did that last accidentally, by the way, through double-transferring money from my checking account to the new savings account I set up to fund Roth shares. I am not a financial master of the universe. But having made the transfer I decided to let it stand, rather than pulling it back and using it for cash spending, so even though it is technically from my paycheck, I’m calling it a side hustle I pulled on myself.

(2) Talked to a friend of mine about booking me for a paid lecture in the fall (I am not sure how much this will be, maybe no more than a couple hundred dollars, but every little bit counts.)

(3) Mentioned to a few friends, in a casual and low-key way thus far, that I am looking for writing, editing, and, what the hell, pet- and baby-sitting work. By the way! Anyone reading this: I am looking for writing and editing work! Feel free to get in touch 🙂

(4) Signed up for a new checking/savings account that theoretically will give me $20 a month — apparently in perpetuity — for using direct deposit and billpay. By the end of this year, if this works, that would be $140. Again, repeat after me: every little bit counts.

I am not getting too excited yet, because I still have, uh, $5144.21 to go on my “fund the Roth using extra income” plan, and obviously I’m going to have to acquire more lucrative part-time work than I’ve done so far. But setting the goal and already making some progress feels good; I’m going to buy in $250 increments so I can do the first lot as soon as the money’s available in my savings account.