Apr 09 2012

How I make extra money: March 2012

Every month, I keep track of how I make extra money. My goal for 2012 is to make $2,500 in side hustle income so we can finally go on a honeymoon and also attend our friend’s wedding in Cancun in October.

In January 2012, I made $515.41
In February 2012, I made $891.34!
In March 2012, I made $636.26!

How I made extra money:

Blog Advertising: $93.75
Staff Writing: $440
Mystery Shopping: $275.55
Surveys: $15
Blog contest winning: $100

TOTAL: $924.30
Minus Mystery Shop fees ($188.04) and Blog fees ($100)
NET TOTAL: $636.26

Year to Date total in Side Hustle Income: $2043.01
Total Travel Fund: $3287.03!

It seems like I make a lot of money mystery shopping, but I want to explain that sometimes I just get reimbursed for a meal. For example, Eric and I went out to a restaurant and were reimbursed $125 for the meal, plus $5 to conduct the shop. I include this in my total for the month, because I have deducted the cost of the meal in a previous side hustle report, under mystery shop fees.

So I spent $188.04 this month, conducting mystery shops, but I expect to make all this back in addition to what I actually make from the mystery shops and the free stuff I get (dinners, home decor, coffee beans, coffee drinks, groceries).

This month, I’m happy that my staff writing is doing so well.

I ended up treating myself this month with a big chunk of my side hustle income for Pure Barre classes, and I also signed up for Weight Watchers Online. I figured I need an extra kick in the pants to figure out why I’m not losing weight. It must be what I’m eating, since I know I cannot possibly workout anymore than I have been!

I bought all this stuff before Eric got injured. While I hope not to have to dip into our vacation fund, it’s good to know that the money is there in case of an emergency. We also got our tax return and that has helped kick off our emergency fund too!

I don’t plan on touching my blog money anymore unless it’s for a vacation!

Overall, I’m pleased how the side hustle is going. I doubt I’ll keep making over $500 a month, but I love that we’ve saved this amount of money so far, and I hope it allows us to go to Costa Rica for our honeymoon, and Cancun for our friend’s wedding.

How is your side hustle income going?



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  1. Blaine@SideJobIdeas.com

    Stumbled across this post, like the info on how you’re earning your extra money. I’m also wondering about Staff Writing since that was your biggest source. Would like to check into it more as a possible idea for my blog readers and would like to hear more about it.
    Thanks for the post.

  2. Jackie

    That’s great that you’re doing so well :)

  3. Jordann @ My Alternate Life

    Wow that’s awesome! I really need to get my butt in gear with the side hustle. I’m thinking dog walking, since I run 5x a week anyway, I might as well take a pup along with me and make some cash.

  4. Shannon

    Look at you go girl! Mexico will so be worth it when we are ass in the sand!:)

  5. Daisy

    Wow, you’re doing great! Good job! Even if you don’t make over $500/month, every cent counts :)

  6. Teacher Girl

    This is great girlie, congrats!!

  7. MommaStar

    You are killing it with the side hustle. I wish I can make that much these days. I use to have a side gig that brought in a really good amount but the economy hit. Now I’m trying to get back up at it again.

  8. Brent Pittman

    Cool! What blog contest did you win? I don’t think I’ve ever won anything online.

  9. justrealhappy

    That’s awesome Erika. I wish I had time for a side hustle, but grad school takes up most of my time. I’m hoping to find a paid internship this go round, but those are to come by. So we’ll see. Mostly I’ve been helping CB market his restaurant, which isn’t money for me, necessarily, but business for him, which in turn benefits the family.

  10. shopping2saving


    I want to try Pure Barre classes. How do you like them so far? Let me know! I still have pilates classes that I need to use up at Club Pilates (my fave studio) so I can’t pay for any other workout classes until I finish those. I also take classes at the gym with my prepaid membership so no more trying out new classes until everything is used up haha.

  11. kim

    Two words – food diary. What you’ll learn (& WW will teach you about this) will probably be jaw dropping; it was for me!

  12. Erin Motes

    What is Staff Writing?

  13. Michelle

    Wow you’re doing great! I wish I was making that much.

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