Oct 01 2014

Living on a Budget: Creative Cash (September Update)

Creative Cash - Living on a Budget

It’s been awhile since I have shared the Creative Cash report with everyone, but I made it happen this month!  Honestly, I have not been as consistent these last couple months in finding creative ways to earn a little extra cash.  It’s been busy, but that really isn’t a good excuse.  It was brought to my attention recently that when I make a point to share this information with you it:

  • Helps keep me accountable
  • Gives me extra motivation to be creative
  • Keeps me on track
  • Reminds me of the goals we are trying to accomplish as a family
  • Refreshes my memory on the importance of sharing with others

When you have the ability to share a piece of what you earn with others not only are you blessing their lives it makes your life richer and fuller too!  I have made a few adjustments regarding my Creative Cash goals, but otherwise it is pretty similar to the report that I have shared with you in the past.

What is Creative Cash?  My definition of Creative Cash means finding a variety of ways to make extra cash each month to put towards my family’s current financial goal as well as having a little extra to share with others.

Why do it?  I am working part time, a stay at home Mom, and wear many other hats from day to day, however, I feel that it is not only important to save money for my family by using coupons and buying items on sale, but to earn a little money to help with the family finances and to share with others.  The extra amount I bring in on top of work is what I call “Creative Cash” and it is made by finding ways to make money creatively or with items and talents I have already.  As I continue to challenge myself to make my life more simplified as well as find ways to bless others I have made it my goal to remain accountable for the Creative Cash I bring in month to month.  My family has faced many obstacles over the years, however, we are blessed and have a multitude of reasons to be grateful.

Explanation: The creative cash will be made throughout the entire calendar month through various endeavors.  As Creative Cash arrives the money, gift cards, and other extras are entered into my Creative Cash worksheet. The cash, gift cards, and other items are stored in a specific Creative Cash folder or marked in the account as Creative Cash.  At the end of the month the money will be split with part of it going towards the current financial goal my family is working on and the other part will be donated to  someone or a group of people such as a charity.  It is important for me to find ways to be a blessing to people outside of our immediate family.

In the past the donated amount has only gone to charity and was always 50% of whatever Creative Cash was made that month.  After much thought and prayer I decided to change this part of my goal.  I don’t want to limit myself to giving only 50% or only giving it to charity.  There may be some months I feel led to give more than 50% and it may be to a specific cause, purpose,  family, or charity.  In order to keep me accountable I will be reporting my monthly total and who I will be sharing the Creative Cash with that month.  If it is a specific family or cause I may or may not be able to give all the details due to the amount of privacy they may want, but I promise share any details I can.

Monthly Goal:  It is my goal to make at least $100 extra Creative Cash a month to help with my family goals as well as share with others.

September was a wonderful month and I was able to accumulate more than anticipated!  I will share with you the ways I did it so if you are looking for ways to make a little extra creative cash for your family hopefully it will be an inspiration in getting your creative juices flowing:

  • $50.00 – Credit Card Bonus Rewards (if you are looking to earn interest both on your savings and checking accounts as well as rewards I recommend checking out  Capital One 360)
  • $116.68Google Ads payment
  • $50.00 – Writing a review for a company
  • $15.00 – Walmart Gift Card from SheSpeaks for sharing about the Febreze Fall Home Harvest Collection

September Creative Cash Total:  $231.68

Current Family Goal: We are currently working to stay within our written budget and pay down debt (yes, exciting I know)!  A couple months ago both our microwave and fridge bit the dust.  Plus, we had some additional expenses and emergencies that have caused us to have a little extra debt that we would like to get paid off!

  • $15 Walmart Gift Card is not cash nor could we pay down debt with it so we used it towards the vehicle maintenance budget.  It was used to purchase oil change supplies for my car which came in handy this month after many miles of driving this summer.   Thankful for a husband who can service the vehicles!
  • $50 credit card bonus was put towards a debt we currently have on our credit card.
  • Any remaining money that is not going to our Creative Cash Blessing Highlight that’s listed below will be applied towards paying down debt!

September Creative Cash Highlight:  Our extra Creative Cash this month will be going to a very sweet family who is in the process of adopting a beautiful little girl named Annalise.  We have known this family for many years and we are blessed to call these amazing people friends.  As you may already know adoption can be a very long and expensive process.  You can read more about their adoption story or give as they go through this awesome journey!

It was exciting to surge past the $100 goal!!!  I know this will help us get a little closer to our goals as well as helps others along the way!  A hundred dollars extra a month may not seem like a lot to some people, but every little bit helps!  If I find that I am going over my goal every month (which would be awesome) I will make an adjustment.  I have plan of action on ways to earn creative cash next month so stayed tuned, hopefully, it will be another  great month of sharing.  Each month I will do a variety activities to accomplish this goal, the items above are just the ones I did specifically this month.  I look forward to sharing more of the things that work well for our family as I do them in the upcoming months.

I will share with you the challenges, successes, and updates as I go through this journey so you can keep me accountable or even go through it with me by participating  and sharing your story. Taking the extra time to find ways to help my family as well as invest in the lives of others is important to me.  I hope that I have been able to encourage you to find ways to come up with some creative cash for your household as well.  Obviously, each situation and family is unique so decide what works for you and go for it!  If you know of another way to earn creative cash I would love to hear it!  Feel free to comment on how you earned creative cash this month or post a picture or link to what you did!

Living on a Budget is a series of ways our family uses a budget to help keep us accountable with our finances.  Life doesn’t always go as planned.  We have used some of the ideas I will be sharing for years while others are ones we are just starting to implement as we continue finding ways to be creative and have fun with what we have been given.  Having a plan in place allows us the freedom to be smart with what we have been given, get more creative when it is a tight (week, month, year or a season) and when necessary live a much more simplified life.  A budget helps us stay on track so we have more opportunities to enjoy the many blessings we have been given as well as share what we have with others.  There is so much more to life than having all the stuff!  We may not have the newest or greatest items in our house, we drive used cars, wear clothes we find at garage sales, etc…however, if our family is taken care of and has love in our hearts for others we have more than all the riches in the world.


breanne stevens 06-10-2014, 21:49

Thanks Bridgette for the generous donation to our special blessing! We are so privileged to call you friends and are always encouraged and challenged by your amazing love for others! XOXO

Bridgette Hayes 08-10-2014, 12:34

Glad to help! We look forward to being part of her life and watching her grow up in your amazing family. Love you guys!

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