Saturday, November 26, 2016

Even a Moron Can Make a Little Affiliate Income

Duh ..........

So I recently got a small affiliate marketing payment from Amazon, $12.89 to be exact.  This represents my affiliate income for the ENTIRE YEAR so far, and while incredibly tiny, is at least a start.  (Better than nothing, huh?)  But the really pathetic thing about all this is that I should have received payment at the end of September, only ...... I was such a dummy that I typed my checking account number incorrectly into my Amazon affiliate profile!

D'oh!!

Oh well.  It took a month and a half to get my mess straightened out, but Amazon did eventually repay me, and now I am a SUCCESSFUL INTERNET MARKETER, albeit the most modestly compensated one, (at least so I hope!).

A note on my business methods: I have been following Franklin Hatchett's "Dominate Tumblr" concept, (https://www.onlinedimes.com/how-make-money-on-tumblr/), because it is simple and monotonous, which is ideal for a lazy, senile old fart like me.  The only problem is that it really isn't the best way to make affiliate sales.  Oh sure, Amazon is great for a rank beginner like me, but it does appear that the ONLY way to really make an acceptable income, (which I define as at least $100/day), is by creating an email list.  Ugh!

I don't know about you, but I HATE having my email inbox jammed up with marketing offers.  But yet, to make a decent amount of cash online, that's exactly what I have to do to other people.  Moral dilemma time!

Better listen to Mr. Lehrer!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3BDyFuDxA-I


P.S.  I suppose I would be remiss if I didn't include links to my Amazon "stores":

Tea Universe  -  http://tea-universe.com  and  http://buyingnirvana.com/teashop

Awkward Uncle's Curiosity Shop  -  http://www.arph001.com/uncle


Monday, November 14, 2016

Why We Will Never Be Rich - Part 03 of an Ongoing Series

https://thinkprogress.org/ketchup-sandwiches-and-other-things-stupid-poor-people-eat-41617483b497#.vapn93dq5

You can tell a person's true motivations by their actions, rather than their speech.  Based on our actions, I am forced to conclude that we want to eventually wind up like the majority of Americans, namely almost broke, and dependent on government social programs for our survival.

I say this because we have been doing a fine job this year of spending down the PRINCIPAL of our savings.  Which is exactly what anyone who wants to be poor should be doing.

We cashed in stock funds on the following dates:

07/01/2016 ............................................................... $2,500.00

07/25/2016 ............................................................... $3,300.00

09/01/2016 ............................................................... $2,500.00

10/05/2016 ............................................................... $7,000.00

                   TOTAL ................................................ $15,300.00 !!!

BUT THAT'S NOT ALL!!  While fifteen grand certainly isn't chump change, we also managed to blow through some money returned from called bonds, about another $5,000 or so.

So let's just round it off, and say we've spent an additional $20,000.00 this year OVER AND ABOVE   what our income sources can cover.

Ugh!!

The only way to sustain this behavior in the short term, (it's unsustainable in the long term, of course), is to print money, which just about any national government you can name is already doing, quite vigorously I should add.  But since we can not print our own money, we will soon run out of it, and then must turn to our dear Uncle Sam with outstretched arms, begging for a handout.

Do you want to live like this?

Friday, October 28, 2016

A Dream of Paradise Shattered?



For years now I have had this dream, (fantasy? illusion?), of someday moving to another country, where the day-to-day expenses are lower, and my "estate" could support me and my family longer.  Added to this was my dream of "earning money on the internet", (to date this has been a bust!), which created an image of yours truly sitting under the coconut trees*, laptop on my lap, idly pecking away at my keyboard while the dollars flowed into my bank account, and I lived like only the super rich do back in the USA.

There are plenty of websites touting the expat lifestyle, but one which early on caught my eye was Bob Martin's http://liveinthephilippines.com.  My wife is also from the Philippines, so getting her to move back there would be much less of a struggle than, say, getting her to move to Panama.

Bob seemed to have it all going for him.  He was a successful internet marketer, making "big money" (?) online for years, all while living a great life in Davao City in the southern part of the Philippines.  (In case you didn't know, Davao is the city the Philippines current president, Duterte, used to be mayor of, and is considered one of the safest cities in Asia.)  He was a guy I was going to emulate.

Then all of a sudden we get this:  https://www.gofundme.com/2qjcm7as?utm_medium=wdgt.

First of all, if you are able, I hope you can spare Bob a buck or two.  I don't know him personally, only through his website, but as best I can tell he is a decent human being.

But getting back to the point of this article ....... this really sucks!!

I know medical expenses are a dreadful thing, (medical expenses have destroyed our budget this year), and I believe they are the leading cause of bankruptcy in the USA, but I thought Bob had all this covered.  I thought he was keeping his expenses low, and his income high, such that when bad luck drops a figurative brick on our head like this, he would be able to handle it.

I guess not.

My first reaction is to have the inner skeptic in me start screaming.  Maybe Bob didn't really make all that much money online?  Maybe his claims to be running a successful internet business from the Philippines were just BS?  Or maybe he was a fool, and spent all his money, and didn't have any insurance or savings for a rainy day?

Or maybe he was a smart, successful guy, who just got hit with a perfect storm of expenses?

I guess no matter where you live, or what your income level is, health care costs can devastate you?

Ugh!

The "good news", (such as it is), from all this mess is that, in his latest update, he indicates that PhilHealth will be paying him some money towards his life-saving heart operation.  Hopefully Bob will continue to get more and more good news like this in the future.

So .......

The takeaway from this awful experience is that, when planning your escape to your particular paradise, PLEASE remember to have a contingency plan, and the cash or credit set aside to help fund it.


* - Although "those who know better" laugh at me, having been around real coconut trees, and seen how high up in the tree the coconuts are, there is NO WAY I will ever, ever, ever sit under a coconut tree!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Online Income Statement - June, July, August/2016

It's a good thing I don't count on online income to pay the bills, because for the last three months it has been a constant zero!  And this isn't for lack of effort!  (A lack of intelligence perhaps, but I have worked at it.)

I sincerely hope I am the least successful internet affiliate in the world, because if other folks are doing as poorly as me, then there's a whole lot of effort being wasted online.

Well ...... maybe it's not a total catastrophe.  I do have some money queued up in my Amazon affiliate accounts, and once one of them breaks the $10.00 limit I should get a deposit in my Paypal account.  Still, $10.00 isn't exactly a huge amount of money.

Things got so bad I even go back to Clickworker from time to time.  And this is Clickworker WITHOUT access to UHRS, (which is where most of the money is made), because I refuse to back to working on a Windows PC.  (We use Apple PCs in our household.)  So I "earn" pennies a day.

Ugh ......


But the internet gods apparently haven't finished humiliating me, because just recently I updated the software on my tea store, ( tea-universe.com ), and now ...... the site doesn't work anymore!!

My store uses WooCommerce, the WooZone plugin, (to grab products off Amazon), and the Kingdom theme.  Two days ago I updated Kingdom to version 1.7, and everything went wonky.  This surprised me, as I thought all three pieces of software were written by the same group of folks, (AATeam, or something like that), and so would play well together.  Ha, ha .... jokes on me!

IMHO Kingdom is a hard theme to work with.  Or maybe the problem is WooCommerce?  At any rate, all this stuff combines into what ain't a normal straight-forward WordPress page.  But after fussing with it a bit I finally got the appearance of the store pretty well stabilized.  In fact, I kinda like how it looks now better than it looked on the older Kingdom theme:

The new appearance of tea-universe.com

The huge problem is that, once you attempt to checkout with items added to your cart, by the time you're redirected to Amazon the cart is somehow empty!

What happened to the items in my cart?

So what I have now is a nicer looking store that no one can order anything from.  Phooey!


I've paid $5.00 on Fiverr to some guy in India who claims he can debug WooCommerce problems.  We'll see if anything comes of that or not.

In the meantime ...... does anyone happen to know of a way to fix this problem?  


Earn money in your spare time on the internet, huh?  Nonsense, I say!

=================================================================

Update: the guy from India directed me to some documentation, which helped, and made some suggestions, which so for haven't worked.  So what I have done is disable the shopping cart altogether.  Now you simply click "buy product" and get redirected to Amazon to complete the order, (add it to your shopping cart, and check out).

If I have time I may fight with this crazy software some more, but in the meantime at least tea-universe.com is functional again.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Why We Will Never Be Rich - Part 02 of an Ongoing Series

One of the main reasons we will never be rich is Old Grump's continual careless, immature, and just plain STUPID behavior.


This idiocy has recently cost us nearly $500!!  Allow me to share with you the sorry details.

1. A few months ago Grump wrote a check, admittedly under duress, (it was for a product being sold through Kuya's school by a company* he doesn't like much), using the credit union account from his icky job at the Lizard Pit.  Soon thereafter he managed to get another job, enabling him to leave that miserable place.  (Hooray!!)  After waiting for all the checks from the Lizard Pit credit union to clear, he happily closed his account there.  And all was well in his world.

Except ...... he forgot to write down one or two checks, and one of these, (yep, you guessed it - to the company he dislikes anyway), got returned.  That was several months ago, and we knew nothing about it until early last week, when Grump got a letter from a collection agency** asking that payment be made for the original purchase, PLUS AN EXTRA THIRTY DOLLARS FOR BOUNCING THE CHECK.

2. As part of getting a new job, Grump got a new bank account to have his paycheck deposited into.  This new bank does some things a little differently than Grump is accustomed to.  For example, when making a payment online, this payment is not always immediately deducted from your account when sent.  Grump makes lots of payments online, and is used to checking his account online to reconcile how much money the bank says he has with how much he thinks he has, and then making any necessary adjustments in his records.

This past week, he screwed up and bounced an online payment.

What happened is that he made several online payments at once, then when he checked back a few days later saw that the bank said he had about $70 more dollars than his records indicated.  So he adjusted his balance up by $70, and went about happily spending, drawing his account down to the last penny right before his next paycheck, due on the 15th.

Of course, when the one online payment that had never posted, (for about $70!), finally showed up, (two days before he got paid, of course!), he didn't have enough money in his account to cover it, so he got whacked an extra $35 for an overdraft.

Grrr .......

3. The final act of stupidity was a whopper!  After driving home from his job on the other side of the state, and being tired and grumpy from a persistent head cold, Grump drove out with Sweetie to get some pizza for dinner.  What happened next is so stupid you probably won't believe it: Grump got mad at his car, and broke off the turn signal / headlights lever!

Grump holding the fruits of his labor

What a fool, huh?

As they say, as fool and his money soon go separate ways.  This little temper tantrum cost Grump $418.36!!  

The newly installed turn signal / headlights lever

The bill!!


So in less than two weeks, a pathetic Old Grump has managed to waste nearly $500 .

It's not like we have a ton of extra cash to burn either.  We just recently had to take $2,500 out of retirement savings to help pay down some credit card bills.  Flushing another $500 down the toilet of childish behavior isn't going to help us at all.

Financial responsibility requires mature behavior.  If you want to remain an irresponsible teenager your entire life you may do so.  Just don't act surprised when you wind up broke.




* - if you really want to know, the company is Scholastic Books, who in his opinion sell a mediocre, over-priced product under the pretense of "helping your school".

** - this is the first time any of us have ever been contacted by a collection agency over an old debt.  The original check was for a grand sum of $21.00 !!


Saturday, July 2, 2016

Our "Net Worth" - an Update (July/2016)

About a year and a half ago we posted an entry about our "net worth", ( http://owlsandcuckoos.blogspot.com/2015/02/our-net-worth.html ).  Rather than write another blah post about our meager online "earnings", (earnings?  hah!!), for the month, I figured now would be a good time to update those old figures.

1. Assets:  $640,000.00

I wish we could take credit for socking away an additional $40,000 in 18 months, but the truth is that our increase here is mostly due to the performance of our investments, and less cautious accounting on my part when determining account value.  But that's okay; and extra $40,000 is great regardless of its origin.

2. Liabilities:  $140,000.00

Well phooey!  I was hoping we had paid off more on the condo, (still owe about $47,000), and the car, (still owe about $10,000), but those debts are still huge.  And of course the never ending revolving consumer debt continues to hobble us, which wasn't helped in the least by BOTH of our boys, (Kuya and Dodong), being rushed to the emergency room recently.  But you know, it just costs money to live.  All things considered, I don't think we're doing too bad considering that we're supporting five of us.


$640,000  -  $140,000  =   $500,000, which is our net worth.  Half a million!  Woo hoo!!


Unfortunately, all the comments from our prior net worth post still apply.

1.  We are spending more money than we are earring.  We still cash in non-IRA savings to help pay the bills.  (Just yesterday Old Grump cashed in $2,400 to help cover a bloated Amex card bill.)

2.  The increase in our net worth seemingly occurs DESPITE our behavior, due to interest and dividends, I suppose.

This is a financially reckless way to live, as sooner or later the market will crash again, and then our redemptions will harm our principal, (or is it "principle"  -  stupid English language!), balance.


Live frugally, and may your pennies become dimes, and your dimes become dollars!


P.S.  -  I forgot to include a link to the net worth page!  Here it is:  http://rockstarfinance.com/blogger-net-worths/ .

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Online Income Statement - May/2016







Well let's see ...... if the coins in the pic above are mostly pennies, then that may accurately reflect what we made online last month, namely $5.48.  This was entirely from Clickworker, and represents stuff mostly done last month, as I have been ignoring Clickworker in favor of promoting my Amazon store.

So how much money did we rake in from our Amazon store in May 2016?  A big, fat, stinky NUTHIN!!

Yuck!  Goose eggs for our efforts.

I think the big trick to getting sales from the "Tumblr promotion technique", (
http://www.onlinedimes.com/how-make-money-on-tumblr/), is to have LOTS AND LOTS of followers.  Thousand at least; tens of thousands if you want to make the big bucks.  I spent most of the last few weeks of May, (and the first few weeks of this month), trying to build up our followers on our Tumblr accounts, arph001.tumblr.com and tea-frenzy.tumblr.com .  It looks like this may, (or may not - stay tuned!), pay off, as sales have begun to trickle in again.

The huge liability to this technique is should anything happen to our Tumblr accounts, we lose all our publicity.   :-(

In the meantime, I suppose I should go back to Clickworker every now and then, just to get some money coming in?  (Who knows - Clickworker does get tedious after a while, and the money earned isn't anything to really brag about.)

Earning money online takes time and lots of effort, and anyone who says or implies otherwise is a liar.  I wish it were as easy as sitting in your underwear looking at porn, but - alas! - it is not.  Then again, the older I get, the more I realize that all worthy endeavors take time and lots of effort.  There are no shortcuts.


Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Online Income Statement - April/2016

CHARGE!!


First the good news: after a long, lonely lonely time, (yeah, it's a GREAT SONG!), we finally made some money on an affiliate sale.  Money was actually deposited by Amazon into our bank account.  Woo hoo!

How much?  Well ..... (cough, cough) ..... the whopping sum of 88¢.

There are more commissions queued up, (adding up to dollars even!), but until they clear they don't count.

Now the bad news: I had noticed that sales at our online tea store, ( http://tea-universe.com ), had dropped off in April.  Wondering why, I logged on and discovered that most of our products had been "disabled".  Grrr!!  What apparently happened is that the software, (Woo Zone, WooCommerce, and the Kingdom theme), had flipped out during a product update and moved nearly all the products into the trash category.  Because of my, uh, "inattentiveness", they had probably been sitting there for weeks.  Good grief!

If, like me, you are following the advice on www.onlinedimes.com, ( http://www.onlinedimes.com/how-make-money-on-tumblr/ is the exact link), and trying to make money with an Amazon store via Tumblr, note that folks have complained about the Woo software, and that he now gives an alternative, ReHub Amazon, or something like that.  I bought the Woo software, so I'm trying to make the best of it, and honestly I don't know if that latest problem was a software bug or a stupid user trick.  Someday when I'm more successful I'll try some other software, and see which I like better.

And I'm still trying to figure out the best way to stock and market our store.  Should I offer many variations of the same product, like our morning thunder page?

We've got a long, lonely lonely way to go before we even break even, but unlike some of our other online ventures this tea store is fun.  Wish us better luck next month, and we hope you too have a profitable month online.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Why We Will Never Be Rich - An Ongoing Series!

When I read the blogs of financially successful folks such as J. Money, ( http://www.budgetsaresexy.com ), Mr. Money Mustache, ( http://www.mrmoneymustache.com ), James Collins, ( http://jlcollinsnh.com  -  you GOTTA read this: http://jlcollinsnh.com/2011/06/06/why-you-need-f-you-money/ ), Jeremy and Winnie, ( http://www.gocurrycracker.com ), and lots and lots of other money savvy folks, I get a little jealous.  They have money, enough money for financial independence, and the FREEDOM that this money buys them.  I, on the other hand, have bills and debt.

Money, Money, Who's Got the Money??

It ain't fair!

Well, no ..... that is absolutely wrong.  It is TOTALLY fair, because we all have a CHOICE in how we can live, and what we will spend money on.*  My wife and I CHOOSE to spend our money, rather than save it.  Here are a few examples from just this weekend, (rounded off for ease of addition!).

1. Saturday

Admission to the Atlanta Zoo, and snacks while we were there:  $130.00

Goodie from the Buford Highway Farmers Market:  $80.00 (at least - my wife paid this)

Dinner at the fantastic Grits Cafe in Forsyth, GA:  $140.00

2. Sunday

Admission to a movie for me and my older son, popcorn, and a soda:  $30.00

A new MacBook Pro laptop for me to use while I am working out of town:  $1,200.00


That's a total of at least $1,580 USD for just this past weekend alone!!

Okay, now I admit that we won't be buying a new laptop every weekend, (we couldn't if we wanted to!), but it seems that every other week we have some new fantastic expense to attempt to pay off.  And except for our older son's unfortunate emergency medical expenses, these are all purchases we voluntarily make.

Saving money really is simple.  It's the discipline NOT to spend that is the sand in lotion!


* - Okay, this assumes you are of sound mind and body, which MOST of us are.  (No whining please!!)



Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Online Income Statement - March/2016

No income this month, just expenses!  $60.00 for internet access, and some miscellaneous stuff, which means I'll round our monthly expenses up to $70.00.  So for the year, we're about -$300.00 .


If you're trying to make some money online, I hope you're doing better than we are!

One final thing: I've learned the hard way not to count online income until it's actually in your bank account.  There are LOTS of rip-off "money-making" sites out there: be careful!!  And until you actually have the cash in hand, don't assume you'll ever get it!


Sunday, March 6, 2016

Online Income Statement - February/2016



This was an interesting month for online "income", as we actually LOST money.  $230.00, to be exact.  Yuck!

As explained in http://buyingnirvana.com/words/novice-affiliate-part-07/, we had some one-time costs associated with getting our Amazon store, Tea-Universe, ( http://tea-universe.com ), up and running.  To date we haven't had a gushing stream of income to offset these expenses, so what we have at the moment is simply an expensive hobby.  (One that we apparently spend too much time and money on!)

We did get a little over $80.00 from Clickworker, but understand that this was the accumulation from several months worth of "clickworking".  I've been doing less on Clickworker recently as we only have Apple PCs at the moment, and UHRS, (the real money making part of Clickworker), seems to work best on Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser.

So there really isn't all that much to report for February, and what there is to report isn't all that great. Hopefully March will be a better month.  (I don't know ..... it's starting out VERY SLOW!)

May we all make LOTS and LOTS of money this month!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Online Income Statement - January 2016

The bottom line is that there was no online income last month.  I got tired of fussing with Clickworker, and as I don't have any other online income streams going at the moment, no gushing rivers of cash flowed into my bank account.

Now I do have to clarify this with two items:

1. I got a 1099 from Clickworker for my yearly earnings, which were about $1,030.00 .  That's not too bad, but I'd like to increase that by a factor of 50 this year.

.... which brings me to ....

2. I'm jumping back into affiliate marketing!  As explained in this article,  http://buyingnirvana.com/words/novice-affiliate-part-06/ , I think I finally found a method that will work for me.  I've already set up an online store called Tea Universe!  ( http://tea-universe.com )  Check it out and let me know what you think!


We finally got our ridiculous debt under control.  I had to sell some investments to do it, but it was worth it.  Debt sucks!  This also points out the value of having diversified investments.  As most of you know, stocks haven't been doing great lately, but municipal bonds, of which I own a few, are currently priced at inflated values.  I sold a few of these, and hammered our misbehaving Amex credit card back into submission.  (Which - alas! - will probably only be temporary.  Kids are expensive!)

Note that I own actual municipal bonds, NOT a municipal bond fund.  It's harder to catch peaks in price like this if you own a fund.  (Or so my Dad, who is "Mr. Municipal Bond Fund Investor" himself, tells me.)


May February 2016 be a prosperous month for you!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Stupendously Stupid Persistant Debt!!

Well, it finally happened.  We maxed out our Amex credit card.

Yep, we are now carrying $15,000.00 worth of unsecured, high interest debt.  STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!!

Here's how it all happened:

1. In October we had to replace all four tires on Grump's car.
2. In November Grump strolled into the hospital emergency room, and when he left the hospital two days later his appendix was gone.
3. As soon as Grump got out of the hospital, (as Sweetie was driving him home, in fact!), Sweetie's car broken down, and required ridiculously expensive repairs.
4. Early this month we finally had to replace the roof on our house.

Now bear in mind that all this spending is IN ADDITION TO the normal day-to-day living stuff that two kids and three adults do, and it's not quite as unbelievably stupid that we now have a maxed out a credit card.

Because we don't like to pay the obscene interest rates charged by credit card companies, Grump decided that now would be a great time to cash in some savings and pound down this stupid debt.  Of course, as seemingly happens every time we need some savings, the stock market has been tanking recently.  It looked like we were going to have to take a beating one way or another, either by paying ridiculously high interest rates, or selling stocks when they are losing value.

Fortunately Granddad was able to come to the rescue!  He had convinced us several years ago to diversify our savings into municipal bonds in addition to stocks, and with the current low interest rates the value of municipal bonds is actually UP.  He looked at our bond portfolio, chose one that was a good candidate for selling, (inflated value combined with a low rate of return to maturity), and sold it for us.  Ta da!  Now we have an extra $9,000.00 to use to fight our stupid debt.

The moral of this story, (besides the obvious fact that DEBT SUCKS AND SHOULD BE AVOIDED AT ALL COSTS!), is that it is wise to diversify your savings.  Note that we invest in the actual municipal bond itself, NOT MUNICIPAL  BOND FUNDS!  Also, investing in municipal bonds takes a bit more work than investing in a stock fund, (there are more ways that the corrupt financial industry can rip you off with bonds than stocks), so it helps if you have a knowledgeable Granddad to guide you.

We ain't out of this debt disaster by any means yet, and for all I know more debt may be coming our way, (God forbid!), but at least we have a viable plan to chip away at it without taking a loss on our stock funds, or paying ludicrously high interest rates.

IMHO everyone should look at diversifying their savings into some municipal bonds.  Besides their ability to sometimes gain value while stocks lose value, in most cases they are also tax free!  But remember to buy the bond itself, not the tax fund.  And PLEASE find someone who knows the bond market very well to guide you.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Online Income Statement - December 2015

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly from December 2015.

Good:

After that health scare back in November, (as you may remember, I wound up in the emergency room to have my appendix removed!), I seem to be getting my health back.  Hooray!  Without good health, nothing else matters.  Grump, Sweetie, Dodong, Kuya, and Lola are all healthy at the moment, and doing well.

We did have a child who died at a very young age in the womb, (Angel, to whom I shamefully haven't written a letter in a long time), for whom if there were a way to get her life back, I would trade a substantial portion of my savings.  Because she never had an independent existence my attachment to her isn't as strong as it is to our other two kids, but if push-came-to-shove I bet I would sacrifice a lot for her.  (We have two friends who lost their son to colon cancer just before he turned 30, and trust me, both of them would give up everything they have, even their lives, if it could bring him back to life.)

I can't overstate it: good health is priceless.

I'm still employed, at a job that pays fairly well, and has good benefits, (particularly the health insurance).

Kuya is at a good school he likes, and where he is doing well.

Dodging is growing and learning.

Lola is a godsend, helping us tremendously with the kids.

And Sweetie is her normal wonderful self.

Bad:

While I am still employed, my job kinda stinks.  (As does most everybody else's, as best I can gather.)   Part of this is just the conflict between my personality and large bureaucracies.  I've never really enjoyed being an employee of a large corporation, but it's the best way I have with my skill set to earn lots of money, so I try to bear with it as best I can.  While early retirement / financial independence isn't in the cards for me, (I'm in my late fifties with two young kids and a wife to support), we do save as best we can.  We read Mr. Money Mustache and other blogs, ( Rock Star Finance is a great one!), but at this point I think that having accumulated "fuck you" money is enough of an accomplishment for me.

Online income has shriveled to practically nothing.  I made less than $50.00 on Clickworker/UHRS for the month.  Blah!  As for Adsense, I notice that folks who "make a living online", (whatever that means), are even commenting on YouTube that Adsense sucks.  And that's not all ..... Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income has now advised AGAINST writing articles online for cash, (that's how I started out attempting to make money online, by the way), and even that crazy YouTuber King Human is starting to warn against using some shaky techniques he championed in the past, and advising folks not to quit their day jobs until they figure out how to "make bank online".

The point of this is that I don't think you'll make much, if any, money online unless you have a product or service to sell, in which case the internet is just another form of marketing.  Sure, maybe you'll make big bucks as an affiliate marketer, in which case I would bet that you have the personality that would also do well with Amway or any other multi-level marketing company.

Ugly:

We now have SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLARS of credit card debt!!   Yuck, yuck, yuck, and double-quadruple YUCK!  This is pathetic and embarrassing and needs to change!  Fortunately I finally believe that we are all onboard to drastically reducing our spending for the year.  We'll see.

Our roof is leaking.  Ouch!!  Just what we need, more debt!


There, in more detail than I'm sure anyone wants to know about, is the current state of our finances.  I just hope we don't have to dig into our saving to pay off this STUPID debt.