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This is my first public income report post since about 2008. To be completely honest, for the past few years I've had no idea how much money I've made each month. I ask my husband for ballpark numbers from time to time so I can share them, but that's been the extent of it for a while. I want that to change, so I'm creating these reports to help hold myself accountable.
I first started publishing income reports when I had Randomosity back in 2008. I still miss that blog, and feel like it definitely would've stood the test of time if I had stuck with it, but I was broke and in a bad situation so I sold it for $5K and then went on to build Slap Dash Mom.
The credit for my renewed interest in income reports goes to Retire by 40.
Ironically enough, SDM would still fit, too, but I got cancer and sold the blog. Here I am with SadieSmiley.com. I know, the name isn't nearly as inventive as the other two. 😉
My Money Journey
In 2006, I ended up homeless. One of these days I'll publish a story alllll about that, but for now, let's talk about what came next.
I have been blogging since 2008 or so. I was a virtual assistant, freelancer, and now I'm a coach as well. I had my first six figure year 10 years later.
My income streams have changed over the years; at first it was mostly active, now it's much more passive. The thing about passive income is that it can take a little while to build up. That's one reason I think it's important to be super transparent in income reports like this one.
This blog you're reading now is going on 2 years old. I've been coaching for a few years also, in a very limited way (I only allowed 12 new students per year). The majority of the income listed here is coming from my membership, coaching, etc. It all started at the end of 2021.
I created a group with a business partner; it was set to be about blogging with AI. After a few weeks, he completely bailed and I was left not knowing how to move forward. He was the AI genius, I was just there to talk about blogging. I was fucked. I had pivoted my entire business to rely on this as my main source of income.
Long story short, I quickly pivoted (again) and ended up launching my membership, Passive Income Pathways. My free PIPs group has grown fast, and right now we are at over 3,300 members in less than 6 months! My VIP coaching program is growing as well, though I'm keeping that growth a little bit slower so I can make sure I learn everyone's businesses in order to be the best coach possible for them.
If you have questions about my income reports, feel free to ask questions in the comments. I'm happy to answer them. The purpose of this series of blog posts is to show you what is possible. I'll always include tips and tricks so you can follow my path while setting up your own. I don't want this to be yet another series on the web of “this is how much money I make so go sign up for hosting through my BlueHost affiliate link.”
All of my income will not be included in these reports – just the stuff I am choosing to share.
I can include our investments if that is something you guys are interested in, because it can be passive income, but the numbers from dividends are pretty small right now… so just let me know if you guys wanna watch our portfolio/investments in these income reports as well. I'm here to help YOU in the way you need it.
March 2022 Income Report
This income report includes most of our income; it does not include our expenses.
I am still learning how to manage and track money, so these numbers are from a spreadsheet our money manager created for us.
She is helping us figure out with our main financial goals:
- learning how to create a budget
- pay off our van
- invest at least $50,000 this year
If you want her info, feel free to message me – she has helped us quite a bit and we've only been working together a few weeks.
NOTE: Numbers are in USD. Even though we live in Mexico, most of our expenses are paid in USD – with the exception of paying our housekeeper, tutor, and a few thousand dollars a month in donations that we pull out and convert to pesos.
Passive Income Pathways
I have PIPs Plus, and PIPs VIP. This is not a passive business for me, but I don't have to put too much work in as far as the day to day goes because we have it set up so well. It's not on auto-pilot (I don't want it to be), but it's close enough for me. I still get to be involved in building my client's businesses, without working myself to death.
I also have an assistant. She works 4 days a week and handles almost all of the business and day to day tasks. My main responsibility is interacting with VIPs and posting in my free PIPs group.
PIPs is my membership, which includes my Etsy course, my writing course, my affiliate marketing course, and more. The cost is $67 per month.
VIP is my group coaching program. It includes everything PIPs offers, plus group and 1 on 1 coaching with me. I charge $167 per month for VIP, with the price going up to $197 per month after April.
Total PIPs income: $10,339 (recurring)
I promote multiple affiliates, but the main income I make comes from two. I also included Amazon in this report just to show how shitty their payouts are in comparison.
Affiliate 1: $1,461.20
Affiliate 2: $1,000
About 15,000 pageviews. February ad earnings: $493.40
Compared to January ($580.09), this was a bit of a decrease but I expected it because I deleted over half of my blog posts and lost about 2,500 pageviews.
My digital products portfolio is pretty passive, but I do add new products throughout the year. For example, I'm doing a $7 affiliate marketing challenge next month. I will then turn it into an evergreen challenge that funnels people into my PIPs and VIP programs.
Every 12 weeks, I do a different challenge to “launch” my membership and coaching program so there is a steady stream of new members throughout the year. This makes it less passive, yes, but the return is high enough for me both monetarily and in a “feel good, I helped a lot of people grow their businesses” kind of way that makes it worth it.
Blog/Email: I'm not sure as I didn't track this separately. I need to. I use woocommerce along with Stripe and Paypal for my digital products no matter where they're sold through (this blog, thrive, etc), so it all gets combined with my PIPs income in those apps.
PLR for Blogs: $368
Teachers Pay Teachers: $119.13
Income sources not included
Smiley's Points: We sold 70% of this blog last year and now get a deposit each month for 30% of the monthly income. This is our first solid passive income investment outside of stocks. We hope to build and sell sites in the future in the same way, retaining a portion as passive income. Right now, my next project for this is Single Mom Budgeting.
Plug-in installs: I charge $25 to install PrettyLinks on my client's blogs, but that gets wrapped into donations. This past month, we added diapers to the list of things we donate, and they're about $5 a pack. We are buying 20+ packs per month.
Like mentioned above, I'm happy to include investment stuff in future reports if you're interested. It's not making me money right now, but I know it will… eventually.
My current Stash portfolio is sitting at $16,333.33. I'm down $2,202.83. YIKES! Most of that is because of Pinterest's stock being down 66%, PayPal's stock being down 36%, and Facebook's being down 23%. Ouch. My best performing stock this month is Dutch Bros (BROS).
We just started investing last year and are currently sitting at $102,244.60 total invested. Because the market is so volatile, I try not to look at our stocks too often. I pulled up all the reports to include the numbers here, but won't look at them again until I do this report next month (except Stash – to invest more).
Our kids started investing last year as well.
Sapphire (15) has $2,612 invested. She's down about $700. Our goal is for her to continue to invest as much as she possibly can.
Micah (17) has $976.49 invested. He is down $271 (Facebook). He started about 8 months after Sapphire did. Our goal for him is to get to $5,000 (or more) invested this year.
3 Lessons From February
We spent a LOT of time on the beach this past month because it is finally starting to warm up a little bit. We also spent a LOT of time watching Netflix – hey, total transparency, right? Kevin and I spent a few hours every night watching a movie or show together.
We are making an effort to put our phones away and look at each other while talking; I started noticing myself going into the “uh huh” phase where I'm scrolling or emailing or whatever and the person talking to me is talking but I'm not listening. I did not like that (and I'm sure they didn't either), so I'm making an effort to change.
1. The hustle needs to come back.
I've slacked off quite a bit and wasn't even working 15 hours a week. My income shows it, and I am going to get back on track for March. The good part about most of your income being fairly passive is that you don't have to work on it every day.
The bad part? The fact that I don't have to work on it to grow it slowly means I get lazy and don't work as much as I want to. We JUST started this path to financial independence and retiring early, so it's important that we get back into hustle mode for at least a year to build everything up.
I do realize it's absolutely amazing to be able to say I made more than $17,000 over the span of a few weeks, especially while not working very much… but that number isn't nearly to my goal. By the end of the year, I need to be making $30,000 a month. That's $1,000 a day, mostly while sleeping, and is 100% possible – but hustle will be required.
2. Building passive income is possible for almost everyone.
Pretty much everything can become more passive. If you're currently a freelance writer, I highly suggest adding PLR into your portfolio so you can start making passive income. I have a PLR course coming out in April, so be sure to get on the wait list if you haven't already.
If you're a Glowforger, you can add a passive income stream by creating and selling SVGs on Etsy and in Facebook groups. Read about how the Glowforge was our best money-maker EVER.
If you're a photographer, sell stock photos.
3. It's okay to still need active income.
While our income is growing at a steady pace, we aren't making enough to build our savings account up as much as I'd like. We placed the importance of investing over the importance of building up the savings last year.
I want to make sure we get each savings account to $10,000 by July. We could wait for the passive income to do it, but it would be much faster if we both took on a few quick gigs like freelance writing or keyword research.
Love learning about how much money bloggers make? I created this blogger income report where 8 folks share their income and how they're making it!
Total for February: $17,521
This is my first income report in a while, so let me know if there's anything you feel I missed or included and didn't need to! Your feedback is valuable. Numbers are NOT my strong suit, so I'm trying to learn how to lay them out in a way that I can understand then convey that to my readers. It is a work in progress. I really hope I'm able to inspire you to start your own financial independence journey!!
If you use Pinterest, please share one of these pins for me!!