Back in August, I shared with you how I lost a chunk of our family income and how it affected me personally and what I really learned about myself. Many of you sent me emails and left motivational comments that touched me and encouraged me to keep going.
What it came down to was that even though I felt that I had overcome my stay at home mom bad habits I didn’t because that part-time job salary contributed to my family. I felt that I wasn’t contributing to the family after writing such a positive and empowering post.
My take home income for my part-time job was $550 a month; it allowed us to splurge on things that previously we were limited to doing or spending money on. Having that extra $550 made me feel like I was contributing to our household income, and losing that part-time job made me realize this.
After allowing myself to be sad and re-think the situation, we decided to really analyze a few things and get back on track. The fact was that I quit my job and became a stay at home mom before I even had that part-time job, made me realize that things were going to be OK. Even if I lost my job, I was never going to:
- Go hungry
- Go homeless
- Go into debt
The truth was that as much as I loved the money I was bringing home, I was going to survive this and make this situation work for me and my family. We were going to be alright and we were going to move forward.
After that post, we committed ourselves to going back to the steps that helped us through our financial journey, things will fall into place once we:
- Rework our budget
- Rewrite our yearly goals
- Go back to couponing
- Go back to stricter menu planning
- Shop the sales
- Cut back on eating out
- Write about my process
- Go back to my $60/Week Grocery Challenge
- Quit spending
We started to follow these steps, but we didn’t quite succeed in sticking with them for a long time. Not that we didn’t do them all, because we did, but we didn’t follow all the steps we set for ourselves and I will explain why in a minute.
Rework our budget. – We did follow our budget, but last month and the month before, we kind of busted our budget. We had unexpected yet happy surprises, we got sick kids, and we fixed my husband's old car; but that came from the other fund we have.
Rewrite our yearly goals. – This we did because we had to.
Go back to couponing. – This I kind of failed at. You see, in order for me to maximize and take advantage of the money I save with coupons, I had to hit the stores. Did I use coupons? Yes, some, but not as I wanted to. I used rebates apps that made me money and saved me money.
The sad part of this was that my smartphone died, and for the past 3 weeks, I have no phone. When I say it died, I mean it completely died to the point where you can’t even see anything on the screen. Below are some of the money saving and money making apps I use:
Go back to a stricter menu planning. – We have been consistent with this, and I have even added freezer cooking into meal planning as well.
Shop the sales. – Since my use of coupons was less than what I wanted to, I still shopped the sales and managed to save as much money as I could.
Cut back on eating out. – We failed at this; the reason why is because dealing with morning sickness and how bad I get them, my family had to eat. LOL, OK, so we didn’t break the bank going out, but we ate out more than we would normally under the circumstances.
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Write about my process. – I fail to do this and this is because I was very busy with my family, dealing with pregnancy, and blog work. I am writing about it now, so maybe that will count as something.
Go back to my $60/Week Grocery Challenge. – I failed at this and that’s because there were weeks where I didn’t need much, and weeks where I spent money on things we needed. We still managed to stay within our grocery budget, but if I would have been more motivated to do this challenge, I would have been WAY less under budget.
Quit spending. – This was not as bad as it looked, but counting the times we ate out or called for pizza, we didn’t limit our eating out spending as much as I wanted to.
During the weeks that followed, we managed to gain another car and stop being a one car family thanks to my husband's determination. And if you think that this affected us financially, it did; but thanks to me losing my part-job and the determination to make an income online and make this blog a money making blog, I was able to increase our family income.
To say that by September I received $517 into my bank accounts that month and by October the site generated over $800 in income, proves how determined I was to make that extra money. By November, I was making close to $1,000 into my account and the site was generating over $700 in ad income; this proves how determined I was.
Am I making more than the take home from my part-time job? Yes! Remember, the take home was about $550 a month and the ads alone are generating more than what I was making a month.
How Losing a Chunk of my Family Income Lead Me to a Better Reward?
Losing a chunk of my family income (though to some, $550 is not a lot, but for me, it’s a nice chunk) made me more determined than before to start making some extra cash online. I want to be able to stay at home with my kids.
Don’t get me wrong, after working for over 15 years, I miss my job; but my kids and my family are my number 1 priority, and if I can find a way to stay home with them, I’m all for it. I want to be able to enjoy a stress-free pregnancy and work online to increase my income.
I think the fact that I only wanted to earn $500 a month from this blog this year as my top goal made me realize that I have to be more ambitious and let those insecurities go and keep moving forward.
Also, I got my patient back and I work 5 hours a week with him again. So I am getting a small income again. As you see, there is a better reward for me and I am making more than I did before. I am super excited and motivated.
I love all of you and wanted to thank you all for the support you all have given me this year! I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a happy 2016!
What have your 2015 rewards been?