I work as a hospital based labor and delivery nurse, which I do between one and two days per week. It pays well, but it’s unbelievably stressful and eats up a good 14 hours per day, which means I’m completely unavailable to run my household or be available as a parent or daughter. We only have another year before both my sons are in college, (*sob*) so I’m prioritizing time with them. I’ve worked more in years past, like when my husband was in school and the year that we were working on our house and paid rent plus a mortgage. (Shudder . . . that was no fun!)
However, I’ve got a lot of irons in the fire which means that I’m constantly bringing in additional income. Sometimes it’s fast and easy, but oftentimes it takes awhile to pay off. Take Craigslist as an example. It takes between five and ten minutes to put together an online listing, and occasionally items sell immediately, but usually I need to renew the listing three or four times, sometimes more. This is because I’m not selling my finds for pennies on the dollar, I’m trying to bring in as much money as possible. However, it only takes around twenty seconds to renew a listing, so it’s no big to be patient. Plant the seed and then wait.
Today I went in for an in-person consumer survey panel, which was scheduled to pay $125 and take an hour-and-a-half from my day. And since it started at 8:30, I’d be home before my sons even woke up. (Teenagers . . . ya’ know!) But an amazing, wonderful, stupendous, spectacular and splendiferous thing happened, which was that they’d overbooked the session and didn’t need me. But they still paid me $125, simply because I’d jumped through the hoops to qualify for the survey and I’d actually shown up! Plus, while I was sitting drinking my free coffee and munching on a free granola bar, I received a Craigslist e-mail from someone who wants to buy a cute curbside chair that I swear I’ve relisted at least a dozen times.
That chair buyer is now coming on Friday morning. To hand me money. For stuff I found for free.
None of this would have happened if I hadn’t planted my income seeds around town. A little here and a little there, which I then get to sit back and harvest at my leisure.
I work tomorrow, which keeps the paychecks coming, (and my 403b funded!) but I’ll always have my crops.
Just call me the frugal gentlewoman farmer.
“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”
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