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Tuesday

Hobbies And Making Money

A little more than a year ago, I took Camille to toddler hour at the indoor trampoline park, and she was so worn out afterwards that she napped for two hours that afternoon.

For many of you, that may be normal, or even a shorter-than-normal nap. For me, it was double the time than I was used to. DOUBLE! Camille has always been a one hour napper (I'm getting 90 solid minutes these days thanks to the amazing and all-powerful OK to Wake Clock).

That day, my house was (somewhat) clean, I was (somewhat) showered and presentable, and I grew ... borrrrrred. Bored. I know, I am SO weird. Normal people would nap, watch TV, I don't know. Chill.

But in that last hour of unexpected naptime sleep, I taught myself how to make hairbows! I took a couple of Pinterest tutorials and fused them together to create the perfect little girly and tailored hairbow.

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It wasn't long after I made that first bow before I had the idea to sell them, because I've always enjoyed making my own fun money. Especially now as a stay at home mom. I call it my "Chick-fil-A money" because it's the cash I keep on hand to buy Camille a 6-piece nuggets meal instead of always insisting on the ever-so-economical PB+J I can whip up at home.

Making hairbows to me as part of The Tipsy Bunny (the Etsy shop I own with my mom) is a blast. I love scouting out ribbon colors and putting together interesting combinations. I get excited every time a new holiday is around the corner and I can focus on holiday bows. When someone tags us on Instagram in a photo of their little ones, I am so proud! I sell quite a few bows locally from my own front stoop and love seeing a car pull into the driveway to come pick up an order from my front porch.

I absolutely love it.

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The other hobby I do to make a little bit of money is ... blogging! It's no secret that blogging has changed remarkably in the 6+ years I've had this hobby, a large part of that being the monetization of blogs. Two of the most mainstream ways to earn a buck from blogging is to work with companies on sponsored posts and to use affiliate links (like the ones in this post). Sponsored posts can be fun to me if the partnership is truly genuine and meaningful. They are not really my cup of tea for the most part, though. Affiliate links are more natural to me as long as the content that surrounds them is genuine, unique, thought-provoking, and appropriate.

I think you see from the way I live my life, buying clothes at resale shops and meal planning around what meats are on BOGO sale, that I'm not obsessed with turning either one of these hobbies into a get-rich-quick scenario. I like to keep them as healthy hobbies -- low pressure, FUN, enjoyable, fulfilling.

Fulfilling is probably the most important word in that bunch, by the way.

I'd continue to do either hobby if they didn't bring me a little bit of money. But that part is the icing on the cake. To me, in this really busy season of life, it helps justify the time I spend making bows or blogging if it's time that could be spent snuggling with my hubby on the couch or tackling some household chores.

I'd love to hear about your hobbies -- whether they bring you Chick-fil-A money or not. :) What do you do that fulfills you? How did you learn to do what you do? What are your goals with your hobby?

27 comments:

  1. As a SAHM I wish I could find a little something like this! The people that follow and read my blog are all just friends and family from back home so zero money there! Haha I'm pretty crafty, but not knowing many people in this area or having the following on the blog, I don't know how anyone would ever really see my "stuff". But side note- I messaged you a bit ago and we chatted about that clock and... it's worked great!!!! We moved our 2.5yr old to a "big girl bed" (a full bed) on NYE and she's obsessed with sitting on the edge and watching for the clock to light up once she wakes up! Haha. I'm curious how long until the thrill runs out ha!

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  2. What a great post! i hope my blog can turn into something similar :)

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  3. I am a single gal living in Nashville that works fulltime for the state government. What I do for extra cash is I am a mystery shopper. The gigs that make me the most money are the ones where I go to apartment complexes and pretend like I want to live there. I do all the rest online on my free time (or at work!) and submit my report, etc. I get paid once a month and it is my "chick fil a money" or in my case pedicures/happy hours/shopping, etc! I also get to go to new restaurants or do other random things and then report back on them. It has been awesome and something that I am truly grateful for and especially love not having to work a full-time job and a part-time job.

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    1. Wait this is amazing! How did you get into this?!

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    2. Ooh this would be my cup of tea!! I'm interested too!!

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    3. I live in Toronto and would love to become a mystery shopper here. Where on Earth do I begin? Help!

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    4. I live in Toronto and would love to become a mystery shopper here. Where on Earth do I begin? Help!

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    5. hey ladies, I just saw all of the comments where y'all are interested and I emailed April with the information that I have and what I do! Feel free to reach out to me at elizabethfgordon@gmail.com and I will hook y'all up!!!

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  4. I used to have a blog. Well, actually, I still have it, but haven't blogged in - wow. I can't remember how long. It was private. I know in order to monetize it, I'd have to make it public. I'd be fine with that, but my husband is much more private than me. What are Ian's feelings on your blog / family privacy?

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  5. I love your drive -- instead of turning on the TV, you watched YouTube tutorials and invested time in doing something you love! I could take a lesson away from that, for sure. :) I work from home right now and stay home with my two girls, and I feel like that leaves little time for finding hobbies I enjoy, which is kind of sad! I did just start blogging again which is something I always enjoy doing. Maybe this can be one of my 2017 goals!

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  6. I love thrift store and garage sale shopping. I have so much fun searching through the clothing and finding cute clothing. A year ago I started buying extra pieces when I saw them and selling them on eBay. I've actually made enough to pay off my student loans - it has been a really great way to earn extra money when I want it AND I get to shop.

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    1. Me too! I've been thrifting for years and flipping on ebay here and there, but the last 1.5 years I have really stepped it up. Helped pay for my wedding and my house.

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    2. Same, I used to just buy my own clothes at a great cost, and sell them when I get tired of them. Now, when I'm shopping at a thrift store or resale shop, if I spot something amazing but not my size, I put it on Poshmark or eBay. It's been amazing way to make a little "fun" money each month :)

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  7. Great post! I am also thinking of new ways to earn a little CFA $$ this year! Our little only needs the 4 piece nuggets when we go out, but I'm sure we'll be up to the 6 piece before too long. ;) Your bows are so sweet!

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  8. I currently work full time for a major corporation and I HATE it because I hate being away from my two babies all day. I have a blog that gets a respectable amount of page views and I've made a tiny bit of money here and there, but I would love to be able to make just enough to allow me to quit my job and stay home for my family. I absolutely ADORE everything about blogging and it's something that I want to do regardless of whether or not I'm making money, so if I could make money from it, then that would just be the dream! Now how to do that, I don't know, but I'm trying to work on it! I'm also intrigued by this thrift store shopping and ebay flipping that I've seen in the comments here! And this mystery shopping thing! PLEASE let me know if she gets back with you on how she got involved with that!

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  9. Love this post so much and love reading the comments :)

    For me, scrapbooking and reading are my favorite hobbies. None bring in money, but I love that time where it's just me focusing on something I love. I love dabbling in designing stuff for invites or posters or stationary on Photoshop, but I am definitely a novice. I'd love to get better and do it for $!

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  10. This is great and you know I adore your bows! (you're the reason I started making them and selling them semi-locally! Such a cool idea!) I also randomly clean houses...odd I know but my Mama still has me do it and writes a check every time (bless her!) and I call that my play $ too :) cheers to chick-fil-A girl! xo

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  11. I love this!! My newest "hobby" and hopefully turned Chick Fil A money for when I'm a SAHM is embroidery!! It's been so much fun trying new things and designs! Now, I've been finding myself longing to be at the sewing machine rather than sitting at work ;)

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  12. I refinished furniture for just our home, because when I couldn't afford to buy what I wanted, I could buy something on Craigslist and refinish it. We got so many compliments that we decided to buy a few pieces to remake and sell. Our business took off! Within a week we had more customers than space or time. It's been a lot of fun to work on this both solo and together when my husband's able to help. We started a company, created a website, FB page and got a little local following. I can usually buy, refinish and sell a piece within a few days and it's cash in hand, a few hundred dollars in profit which blows my mind. I LOVE the work and hope after our 2nd baby is born this month that I can get back to the shop. Our daughter goes to daycare 2 days a week and I can always prep or get a coat of paint on during naptime. We just need a bigger workshop this year so I can get my garage back!

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    1. This is phenomenal. What a profit! And I bet your buyers are still thinking they are getting a deal on their new beautiful piece. Brava!

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  13. Great post and we enjoy our Tipsy Bunny bow and Advent calendar! Especially now that I'm back at work again after almost 4.5 months off w/ girlie #2, hobby time is LIMITED. However, I would say my number #1 go to hobby is/always has been running. Due to some serious injuries (mostly my feet) over the years and at the end of my pregnancies, I have also found some enjoyment in walking as well. Now, I usually end my runs with a walk to cool down/go easy on my old-lady feet.
    I also love to read. I was a cultural Anthropology major in college and like to dive into a subject and learn as much as I can.

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  14. We have chickens and I sell the eggs! $4 per dozen. I keep the cash in a jar in my laundry room for all those times we need to send the kids off to school with some cash for this or that.

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  15. I really love this post. Hobbies seem so hard to come by these days...someone recently asked me what my hobbies were and I was like, "hmmm, I didn't realize hobbies were an option for me at this phase of my life!" I enjoy blogging and I'm trying to find workouts that I enjoy that can "act" as a bit of a hobby until I have a little more free time on my hands. I find a lot of my pre-mom hobbies just don't jive with having little kids (i.e. shopping, reading, traveling etc).

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  16. Love this post! My hobby is doing Pilates. I've recently turned that hobby into teaching Pilates lessons. It's so fun to share what you love doing with others and get in shape at the same time!

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  17. None of my hobbies are money makers- but I have a ton! Ha! Reading, cooking, painting, blogging, exercise, gardening. If only taking care of my children and my actual job didn't get in the way!

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