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Adding Another Side Hustle


Adding a Side Hustle

Dave Ramsey introduced me to the idea of a side hustle years ago. Since we got really serious about tackling our debt last year, I’ve tried out five side hustles and kept three so far. Plus I find I’m constantly scheming new ones. I’m pretty introverted and not much of a natural entrepreneur, but paying back excessive student loans can be really motivating.

The problem is that my energy level and my mental space for adding new side jobs just ain’t that much. Between helping run our business and momming, I only have so much left in me for extra jobs. But I really want to chip away at our student loans, so the ideas keep coming.

My latest side hustle idea came to me as I drove by a beloved donut shop. This shop is a major local favorite. Their donuts are delicious and fairly priced, and their online reviews are amazing. Inside the shop, it’s clean and simple. There are glass cases full of donuts and a few chairs, and it looks nice.

But outside of the shop? It’s surprisingly shabby.

About a year ago, they moved from a newer strip mall to this small, freestanding building just down the road. When we first went to see them at their new location, we pulled into the parking lot and I kept checking and rechecking the address. There wasn’t a sign in sight, the windows were dark, and there was broken glass, some dying bushes, and tall weeds all over. I thought for SURE we were in the wrong place.

Nope. They were open.

They’ve since painted some friendly looking donuts on the window and added a sign at the street, which helps a ton. However, the trash, weeds, and sad shrubs remain. Some of their reviews mention the rough exterior, but most of them just rave about how tasty their confections are. Clearly their donuts are so good that people don’t mind.

As a nerd that loves gardening and weeding, I’m sure I notice it more than others. But as a fellow small business owner, I can’t help but wonder how many more new customers they could get if they upped their curb appeal.

I’ve thought about pulling a few weeds as I walked back to my car. Or casually picking up some of the trash as I walked in. But then I thought, “What if he hired me to help clean up out here?” It’s so easy to grow stuff here in the Northwest. I could plant some foolproof perennials or add an easy-to-care-for planter, and then come twice a month to weed and trim bushes.

I have no idea what to charge, but it would be a job I’d feel excited about. Small business owners have a lot on their minds, but I believe curb appeal could help his business grow. Of course, it would also help us get that much closer to paying off our debts.

And maybe—just maybe—he’d give me a free donut every once in a while.

What have been some of your side hustles? Do you have a favorite?

Up Close and Personal View of Different Cultures and Choices


There’s a lot of chatter about how your upbringing affects your relationship with money. Princess is taking a sociology class this summer, so we are hearing about it even more during the lectures. (She and I sit at the dining room table while we work every day so I hear a lot of her class lectures and discourse.)

We’ve recently hear lectures on class as it relates to the United States. And how a person’s class affects not only their money perceptions but also their earning potential and so on. My kids are all very belligerent at the generalizations.

Kids and Money Perceptions

As a foster family with now 12 kids through our home, we have had a very up close and personal view of how different backgrounds affect a person’s, specifically a child’s, thoughts on money. We are seeing that every day now as the kids are growing up and becoming more independent.

We are also seeing how easy it is for a young adult’s perceptions of money to change with just a little bit of exposure and education. It made me feel very proud to hear Beauty come in from a visit with her mom talking about how they discussed money and saving.

Beauty has jumped in with both feet to saving and setting goals. I’m sure part of that is having her physical needs (food, personal hygiene, etc.) met by someone else for the first time. But she’s also watched over the last 5ish weeks that she has been with us how excited the kids are every week when they put part of their pay into their savings accounts and watching it grow.

I am convinced that many young people’s failings with money are due to lack of exposure and education. I’m certainly not saying my kids are making all the right decisions. Boy, they certainly make some crazy decisions!

Kids Saving Goals

But I will say, that each of my children make informed decisions and know what each financial decision will cost them…not only in the short term but also in the long term. And they each have savings goals that really drive them…

  • History Buff is saving to move out and to take some trips with his girlfriend.
  • Sea Cadet is beginning to save for a new car (because he wants one, not because of a need) and is also looking to move out.
  • Princess is saving for college, knowing that the bulk of that expense will fall on her.
  • Gymnast is saving for a phone right now, but he still wavers on that, which is to be expected at 14.
  • Beauty is saving for a car and the fees that go along with that when she turns 18 later this year and can get her license.

As everyone in the BAD community knows, I have made some terrible financial choices along the way. But for the last several years, I have been much more transparent with my kids (age appropriate) and vocal about what certain choices have cost me/us in the long run. I hope that by doing so, they will not live in fear but will have a much more healthy view of money and the value of being financially stable, even if that means not “living large” as my 14 year old son likes to say.