Becoming a stay at home mom was something that I knew that I wanted for the longest time. It took forever to have our first. We struggled with fertility issues and there was even a low point where I thought that I might not ever be able to have kids. After that happened, becoming a mother was something I wanted more than anything.
After I became pregnant for the fourth time, we finally had a baby and she changed our lives the second she was born. The moment I looked into her eyes everything changed. I was in love, in heaven, in bliss but times that by 20. It was love at first sight but x 10. My perspective changed. So many things that I thought were important before weren’t even on the same level anymore.
It was then that I knew I could never leave her and I had to figure out a way to stay home with my baby.
Fast forward four years and three kids later it’s become a reality.
I started writing this Work From Home series on my blog because through the years I have met so many moms who think staying at home with their kids and starting their own business is impossible. But I’m proof that if you want something bad enough you will do it.
So how can you do it??
Don’t take no for an answer. Just do it.
I make money from home two main ways – Blogging $2,819.79 and Photography $665.93 for a total of $3,485.72 for September 2016.
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Here is my income for the month of September 2016.
Blogging – $2,819.79
A good chunk of my monthly income comes from this blog. I work at my blog probably a little more than part-time, it’s hard to gauge when you work from home though. I do work a lot but since I do have three little ones that I stay home with, most of the day I am just being a mom. My work usually happens early morning or late into the evening and on weekends when dad is home to help with the kids.
Here is a breakdown of my income from this blog.
Sponsored Posts: $2,194
Affiliate Earnings: $690.79
A Little Background
I started this blog in 2013 and it started out as hobby but I knew that people were making money blogging. At the time I had another job, I would sometimes go weeks or months without publishing a post. I wanted to make money from it but really didn’t know how to go about doing so. By doing very little in the beginning I started making maybe a few hundred dollars at a time here and there. Nothing consistent but that’s still pretty impressive looking back at how little time I was putting into it.
As I began posting more the income increased but it still wasn’t anything substantial. I definitely did not rely on this income at all in the beginning. In the last few years I have taken months off at a time to have babies, raise babies and start a photography business. Oh yeah and I did have a boutique for a short period of time but realized pretty quickly that wasn’t for me. I always found myself coming back to what I loved most – this blog!
The Moments of Realization
Fast forward to today and three babies later I think I had the realization in just the past year. I needed to get serious. You can’t be semi-serious about something if you expect to make serious money. I told myself that now was the time.
Because let’s just be honest….kids only get more expensive as they grow right? Just thinking about their education and colleges X 3…geesh!
Have you ever come across blogger’s income reports on Pinterest? It’s a pretty common thing these days, although when I started it wasn’t something you did like it is now. Bloggers are happily sharing what they are making and how they are making it. Bloggers are bringing in anywhere from $10k – 100k per month. So naturally, I thought to myself – Well, why can’t I??
This past month I did something that I have never done before. I invested in an online course to learn more about how to make money blogging. I spent $200 on an affiliate e-course, that was so well worth it because the last two weeks of September I earned $690 in affiliate income by implementing some of the strategies I learned in the course! This is a big deal for me because before taking this course my affiliate earnings were averaging a measly $20 per month – if that!
Starting a Blog
Blogging has such a low start-up investment at just $3.95 a month. Start a blog with Bluehost here and get a free domain too! Check out THIS post to see a tutorial once you have your domain. You will see just how easy it is to start a blog!
Blogging is not a get rich quick scheme, you might start making just a few hundred dollars a month at first but if you work at it and you nurture it and treat it like a business you can turn it into a full-time business.
Last month I did two photography mini-sessions that brought in $665.93. I don’t shoot regularly anymore, more like seasonal, but when I do I average about 2 sessions per month. I started my business in 2014, one of the reasons I neglected my blog for months, and I realized that although I love photography, I love it more for personal projects rather than shooting clients AND I just love blogging more. My plan for next year is to stop doing photography sessions and monetize my photography site and use it to give tutorials and tips on photography. So I will hopefully (crossing fingers) have two blogs making money by this time next year. 🙂
Related: What’s in my Camera Bag.
Starting a Photography Business
If you have an interest in photography, some skill and equipment then starting a photography business might be for you. Although unlike starting a blog, the start-up costs for starting a photography business is a little more expensive. You need, at the very least, a professional camera and some good editing software. However, don’t start off with top of the line stuff. You can get started with some of the more affordable cameras and lenses. You may want to check out this ebook Getting out of Auto.
VIDEO UPDATE – OCTOBER 2017 – A FEW UPDATES SINCE WRITING THIS ORIGINAL POST IN OCTOBER 2016
My monthly blogging income has now become a full-time income allowing me to take on more projects for personal creativity.
First Sponsored Trip – Blogging has taken me and my family on a dream vacation! My family and I went on our first sponsored trip with Royal Caribbean on an 8-day solar eclipse cruise. We were hired to capture content for them on the cruise + paid a fee for our time. The trip was a dream, truly a once in a lifetime experience and it would not have been possible without this blog. You can see our trip recap post here .
New Creative Projects – I recently started up a YouTube Channel and have started diving into video + editing. I am in love! The emotions that are captured in video are so precious. I’d love for you to head over to our channel and subscribe!
I have officially retired from photography! This is something I have thought about for a while. Although I love photography for personal projects I stopped loving taking on sessions for others. In a sense, I do something in photography almost every day of my life when it comes to blogging. I’m always styling photos for blog posts and photographing my kids for sponsored posts and for Instagram.
What Didn’t Work
At one point, I started an online boutique. It was fun at first and I had a little success with it, but buying, keeping and managing inventory was a lot. In addition to the packaging and shipping, it was just not for me. I was pregnant at the time with Lennon, now 11 months, I found myself working all day long and at the end of the day I felt guilty that I had not seen my kids enough, and they were home with me!
Everything happened during the day, from managing sales to marketing, sending emails, newsletters, promoting coupon codes, posting on social media not to mention the main task of buying clothes, ironing, taking measurements, photos for the website to the packaging up and finally shipping. I profited a little but the profit was not worth the time it took to manage. So after a few months, I closed the online door to my little boutique. It was fun while it lasted but not for me.
If that’s something that interests you and you want to give it a go, all you need to do is apply for a resale license in your state. It’s really easy to do just Google it for your state, then you need a website but Shopify makes it really easy for you. It’s like a built-in store, all you do is pay them monthly. It will require an upfront investment of anywhere between $500-$1,000 because you will need inventory, unless you dropship, so it’s definitely not cheap. But if you love fashion and marketing, it could be for you.
Here are a few more ways moms can make an income from home.
Teach English To Students Online – VIPKID needs thousands of part-time remote workers to teach English online to kids in China. This is an amazing work-from-home opportunity – and don’t worry, you do not need to know any foreign language. As an online teacher, you can earn up to $22.00 per hour. All you need is a Bachelor’s degree in any field and eligibility to work in the US or Canada. There’s no cost or obligation to apply and see if you qualify. Fill out the online app here.
Virtual Assistant – With the growing number of online businesses popping up, VA’s are needed more than ever. What can you expect to do as a VA? Managing emails, social media accounts, managing finances, making calls, scheduling appointments. You might want to check out this e-course Become a Virtual Assistant in 30 days or less.
Freelance Writer – If you like writing you can do some work as a freelance writer writing for companies. You don’t need a blog to become a freelance writer but you will need to show somehow that you can write. Freelance writers can write for a specific publication or many. You might want to check out this e-course 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success.
Transcriptionist – A transcriptionist is hired to listen to audio files and then transcribe, or record, what it is she hears from the audio file. There are some industry-specific transcriptionist positions but there are many general positions available. Companies will hire you and provide you with the audio file to transcribe, so all you need to get started is a computer and a high-speed internet connection to start working. You might want to check out this e-course Transcribe Anywhere.
Survey Taker – Did you know that you can be paid simply for taking online surveys? Here is a list of companies that actually pay you just to take survey’s online. I know a few people who do this regularly and they bring in a few extra hundred dollars a month! (American consumer opinion, MySurvey panel, Global Test Market, Mythought counts, Survey savvy panel, Toluna opinions, Inbox Dollars, Honest survey, Pinecone research, Premier Mom, Survey Payday )
Ebates – This website gives you cash back for the shopping that you’re already doing online. If you shop online at Amazon, Kohls, Target + so many others, just mentioning those because those are my favorite places to shop, this website gives you cash back for your purchases if you click on their links first! It’s so easy, there are thousands of retailers and all you have to do is go to their website first. It is NOT a scam. I have gotten a couple of checks already just by shopping online like I normally do. Sign-up for Ebates HERE.
Etsy shop – Do you have an idea for creative or unique handmade products? If so, you might be able to start-up an Etsy shop.
Web Design – Requires some skill but to be a web-designer all you need is a computer. All of your resources are all online!
This is my list for now. I hope to keep adding to it once I discover new ways + resources moms can make money from home.
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