Thursday, August 27, 2009

I don't want to go to work!

So I feel like I'm making progress toward becoming a stay at home mom, but unfortunately I'm not there yet. I have to go to work tonight. I'm actually a little frightened that I would rather be home washing dishes and doing laundry instead of going in and bartending! But there's a few other writing sites I'd like to check out and just can't find the time.
eHow has been going okay, but I need to put some more time into it. They just had another round of article sweeps, and I lost two articles. Not big earners by any stretch and I'm not surprised I lost those two. I am averaging around $100 a month residual income on eHow on 158 articles. I would like to get back into the habit of writing a couple articles per day for eHow and up that residual income as much as possible. I will cover eHow in the near future, ways to use SEO in your articles, article exposure, choosing photos, and choosing the correct keywords to attract a larger audience. eHow is very satisfying work, I wish I had more time to devote to it. The eHow community and forum have been invaluable in learning the ropes and getting started with writing online. There are some fantastic and helpful people over there! Plus, it's rather addictive to log in each day and see what article is getting the most views and earning while I sleep. I really like that part!

There are writers at eHow making well over $1000 per month, some double or triple that amount. Several of them have written guides that outline how they have achieved their success. And the best part is that money is residual, meaning it just keeps on earning even if you never write another article. How cool is that?! The guide that I purchased and have greatly benefited from can be found here, it was written by eHow user WriterGig, and she is very helpful and friendly. She often answers questions via the eHow forum for free. WriterGig has a large library of quality articles and has mastered how to get the most income from each. For an investment of $25, you can almost guarantee to make that back the first month in income. It certainly made a difference to me!
This journey to become a stay at home mom certainly isn't going to happen overnight, but I do feel like I'm making small steps in that direction. As long as the direction is moving forward, it's a start. I feel like I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, and finally feel certain it's not just an oncoming train!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Coupon Mania!

Getting the budget under control has been one of the most difficult tasks in becoming a stay at home mom. Trimming the grocery budget hasn't been easy, but not that difficult, either. There's many ways to accomplish this, coupons being the easiest and fastest. Changing the way you shop also helps. Keep up on store sales to maximize the power of your coupons, matching them to store ads. Coupons can also be found online at various websites, and even can be bought in bulk on sites such as Ebay.

Many websites offer manufacturers coupons, plus they can usually be found in local newspapers. Call around and find out which stores offer double or triple coupons, and if there's certain days. Keep this info on a chart, so that you can plan your grocery shopping around these days. Coupled with store sales, this can amount to substantial savings! Stockpile what you can when you find a terrific deal, things such as dry goods or frozen food will keep, and you won't be shopping for those items for a while, which saves money in the long run. I allow about $20 extra in my grocery budget to stockpile needed items. There have been weeks all I've needed to get from the grocery store is milk and diapers, everything else was stocked up!
Learning to perimeter shop can help trim the budget as well. The theory is the vast majority of your shopping should occur on the outer walls of the store, fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, and dairy. Making dinner from scratch is not only satisfying for most stay at home moms, but nutritionally superior and cost effective. Watch the prices for produce, a good sale in frozen veggies can end up cheaper in the long run. Plus steaming from frozen produces quality similar to fresh.
When you have enough coupons, shop on a double coupon day, and use it for products on sale already for things you usually use, you can save a huge amount of money in the long run. It can be a little tricky to get started, but the payoff is unbelievable overall. 

MTurk really pays!

So MTurk is really paying off! It's been a few months, and I took the better part of a month off in between, but so far I've made $355.10, and have been paid out by them three times! I've found that I can average about $7 - $10 per hour or so, sometimes more, not bad for a stay at home mom wanna-be! I'm really excited to use this in my journey to be a stay at home mom. The hours and jobs are flexible and quick. I can time it during nap times, etc. I love MTurk!

One thing I've found with MTurk is that if you do well with your work, sometimes someone you've done work for will contact you to qualify for higher paying HITS doing the same thing you have been doing. I got a two and a half times raise by one company, and they post work frequently. It's turned into a nice little bonus, and that one company probably accounts for 80% of what I have made with MTurk. 

One last thing I suggest, is to take as many qualification tests as you can. If you think you are remotely interested, take the test! It could lead to a lot more work in the future. And I think we can all agree there is no such thing as a stay at home mom with too many qualifications. As you search through hits, don't check the box that only shows results you are qualified for. You may find some work you can do but just need to take a little test, and that can lead to a lot more work in the long run.

I will keep updating on the progress with this over time. I am very happy to have found this opportunity, it has really paid off!