Best Black Friday Deals On Work-From-Home Courses!

Happy Thanksgiving and Black Friday, Side Hustle Moms!

I know we are all busy scurrying the web for the best deals today, but why not take a minute to invest in YOU and your dream work-from-home career? I have found some amazing discounts on killer courses that will kick-start your new job, including:

1. Transcribe Anywhere: Learn how to become a transcriptionist from a 30-year instructor, PLUS get job leads when you complete the course with Transcribe Anywhere! Use code BESTSALE to receive $150 off the General Transcription, Legal Transcription, General Transcription: Theory and Practice, and/or Legal Transcription: Theory and Practice. Click here to sign up.

2. SmugMug: Are you a photographer who not only takes stunning pictures, but dreams of one day selling them? That day is today, friend, as you can set up your own online gallery and store with SmugMug for 40% off now through Cyber Monday. Click here to sign up.

3. SkillShare: Do you want to grow your website, learn Facebook ads or how to grow your Instagram? Maybe you just want to learn a new hobby? No matter your answer, now is the time to say YES, as Skillshare (which offers thousands of video courses) is offering a generous 40% off UNLIMITED courses for the year! Click here to sign up.

Please Note: This post may contain affiliate linking. While these links don’t cost extra for you to use, a percentage of all sales made through these links will help fund future Side Hustle Mom content.

The 5 Stages of Getting a New Work-From-Home Job

You know that saying, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans”?

Well, that’s basically been my life as of late.

Between long car rides for funerals, sickness, and other day-to-day bumps, I haven’t gotten to post everything on here that I have wanted. (I guess that comes with having a side hustle sometimes… big plans have to be put on the back burner because of family, day jobs, and life in general).

Since next week is Thanksgiving, I will not be posting anything new, BUT I will be working hard to get ahead for the rest of the year, so stay tuned!

Today, I leave you with an article I wrote on my personal blog nearly 4 years ago regarding the 5 stages of getting a new work-from-home job (or any job, for that matter)… like grief, the emotions come in different spurts, which I was randomly reminded of the other day whilst speaking to a friend about her new job.

Enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving!

A few weeks ago, I got a new job.

Finding a job I could do at home with Jax (in addition to my marketing) is something I prayed about, searched high and low, and constantly scoured for on Craigslist.

I finally found it.

I'm currently writing daily entertainment articles for a national site and couldn't be happier -- my bosses/co-workers are awesome, the work itself is a blast, I get to keep working while staying home with my little tyke, AND I'm learning a ton about my home state! It's a win/win/win/win.

Anyway, from the time I was offered the job to the time I started writing/setting up posts, I experienced 5 all too familiar feelings. I've worked several different industries in my 25 years (retail, hospitality, journalism, and food to name a few) and have felt these varying emotions every single time -- and this time around, it finally occurred to me what was happening.

You know how there's the 5 stages of grief? Well there's also the 5 stages of getting a new job. Don't believe me? Read on..

Ladies and gentlemen: I present to you the Annie Sandmeier Model (or the 5 Stages of Getting a New Job).

1.) Shock - One of the first reactions is shock, wherein the applicant cannot believe they were the (supposed) most qualified candidate out of all the (assumed) people who applied.

2.) Excitement - When the applicant recognizes that they did indeed get the job and that shock cannot continue, it becomes excited, possibly a little cocky. Certain psychological responses of a person undergoing this phase would be: "Eff yeah! I got the freaking job!"; "Hey *insert significant other's name here*, I got the job so you need to take me out and give me a back rub to celebrate!"; "I need to go out and spend all the money on new work clothes (which, in my case would be yoga pants and pajamas, since I work from home)!" 

3.) Pure, Unadulterated Panic - The third phase involves recipient realizing that the cockiness may have been a bit premature. Usually, the job recipient is given a swift kick in the ego and begins to negotiate with a higher power in exchange for a reformed lifestyle: "Hi God; it's Annie again.. I'm sorry I got so ahead of myself with this new job.. Again.. I pray that this first week goes smoothly and that I can quickly learn everything I need to do.. If it does, I promise to limit my Netflix binging. Amen."

4.) Self Doubt - "I can't do this job! Why did I think I could handle this?!" "Why did I apply for a writing job.. I can't even write!" 

5.) Acceptance - "Okay, okay.. so maybe I CAN do this." "You got this, girl! Just remember to breathe." In this last stage, individuals embrace the new job, figure out their new schedule, and overall just get their shi — err stuff — together. 

I think that the hardest part for me was getting used to the writing, deadlines, etc., but once I found a good balance and made myself a little schedule, I realized that everything would be just fine! I try to do most of my work either very early in the morning (before Jackson is awake) or wait to do it after dinner (when Brandon is home and can watch him for a bit). I'm loving my new job and feel extremely blessed to be doing what I'm doing from home! 

Here Are The Best Ways To Make Quick And Easy Money Before Christmas

Ah yes, that most wonderful time of year is once again here, so it is time to break out the eggnog, festive attire, and credit card so that you can rack up massive amounts of debt, right?

If you know me, you know that I LOVE Christmas (like, I listen to Christmas music/watch Rudolph/buy gifts year round), so I cannot help but feel giddy when Christmas commercials begin airing on November 1st! While this happy time of year brings great joy, it can also bring great anxiety, as gifts, turkeys, and higher electric bills cost lots of money. 

Before you go opening new charge accounts around town, we recommend checking out our list of the best ways to make extra money for Christmas:

easy christmas money

Become a personal shopper 

Mystery shopping has a negative connotation, but becoming a personal shopper with an accredited company like Instacart? 100% legit! Whether you are wanting to pick up a few hours here and there during the holidays or are looking for something a bit more consistent, there is money to be made as a grocery shopper/deliverer. 

Rent your guest room on Airbnb

You can read A LOT more about the Airbnb opportunity here, so I will just recap by saying that you can rent your extra room or guest house as little or as often as you want, and come out ahead each time.

Open a tiny boutique. 

As you may remember, I recently partnered with Kollectin and was super impressed by their incredible selection of bling and by their business opportunity! How does it work? In their own words, "you get to pick and choose the jewelry you love, and manage everything with a couple of swipes of your phone: keep for yourself, sell, or send back and get something new. It's that simple." (In addition to the business opportunity, Kollectin also has a lot of beautiful jewelry for sale, which makes for that perfect Christmas gift!) To get instant access to the app, use promo code Annie491!

Cash-back apps

If you have been around for awhile, you know that I LOVE me some Ebates... and what's not to love? To use a cash-back app like Ebates, simply go to their site/app, find the online store you're planning to shop at, click the link, and shop. That is literally it! The cash back varies depending on where you shop (it will tell you the cash back percentage on the store's home page), but it is a simple way to earn some extra money here and there.

Take surveys 

Are survey sites legit? Depending on the site? Yes. Can you get rich off of taking surveys? I wish... BUT if you are consistent, you can easily earn cash and/or gift cards, perfect for buying Christmas gifts! (Not sure which survey sites/apps are the best? We recommend Survey Junkie, My Points, and Swagbucks.)

Do quick, odd jobs around town 

Want to make $10+ in less than an hour? Do a few quick audits for Gigwalk! How does it work? In their own words, "Gigwalk is a mobile app for Android and iOS that allows you to find quick jobs (“Gigs”) in your area. A Gig is represented by a pin on the map in our mobile application and can take anywhere from 5 minutes to a few hours to complete and pay anywhere from $3 to $100. Clients see the work Gigwalkers submit through the app on our back-end Gigwalk platform.)" I have completed several gigs since beginning my Gigwalk venture and cannot recommend it enough... you can read a lot more about my experience here.

Flip on Craigslist 

Not to brag or anything, but... I have pretty much perfected the art of the Craigslist flip! Just how does one do it? You can start by emptying out your closet and/or the kids' toy box, OR you can do what I do, which is buy larger toys on sale at Goodwill, clean them up, and then sell them on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist for a profit. Easy peasy, right? To give you an example, last year I bought a Fisher Price playhouse for $2, buffed out all the scuff marks, and sold it on Facebook Marketplace a few days later for $15!

Flip on eBay

While the money may not come as quick as Craigslist, there is still cash to be made on eBay! For those of you who are unfamiliar with flipping something on eBay and what all that entails, it is essentially just finding/buying items like clothes, antiques, electronics, etc., and then re-selling them for a profit. (Side note: I have several friends/family members who sell full time on eBay, so it's great for both chump change and a full-time income.)

Turn your passion into profit 

Do you knit beautiful scarves? Sell them. Bake incredible cookies? Sell them. Create gorgeous jewelry? Do you see where I'm going with this?! My mother-in-law is one of the busiest people I know and -- in addition to working full time -- farms, bakes delicious breads, pours and sella her own candles, and more. If this is something that may interest you, start by marketing your product to friends on Facebook and then expand to groups, farmers markets, and/or artisan fairs.

Babysit 

Whether you nanny during the day or pick up jobs in the evening, there is always a need for trusted caregivers! Not sure where to find your next job? Offer your services to friends or utilize sites like Care.com

Paper route

I know, I know... the words paper route bring up images of teenage boys on bikes, but do you know what? Paper routes are a quick and simple way to bring in an upwards of $1K per month! Picture it: A quiet car, your favorite coffee, virtually no traffic... total dream job, right?!

Earn gift cards with Job Spotter

Have you heard of Job Spotter? It's an app that let's you snap pictures of help wanted signs around town, upload them, and then rack up points to put toward Amazon cards and more.

Cut the cord

This one is more about saving money than it is making money, but have you thought of getting rid of your expensive cable and switching to just over-the-air? We haven’t had cable in nearly 5 years now (and before that got it for free, thanks to my husband’s job) and are amazed by just how much we save by relying solely on over-the-air! Not only is the picture crystal clear, we still get 50+ channels (ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, a bunch of oldies/game show/movie channels) and save an upwards of $150/month by not having pricy cable on demand! (My other favorite cable-less hack? We recently downloaded the FREE Pluto TV app on our Roku and get a ton of free news channels, a 24/7 Mystery Science Theater 3000 channel, and even a home channel that airs old HGTV shows from the late 2000’s, early 2010’s.)

Transport food (or people)

This is a super easy and popular way to make money that deserves mentioning: food delivery! Uber Eats and DoorDash are HUGE in the city (especially for us lazy folk who sometimes do not feel like cooking or driving anywhere for food) and give you the flexibility to work as little or as often as you like!

Seasonal Retail

Last but certainly not least is what is quite possibly the most obvious: seasonal retail. If you have someone to watch the kids and are able to commit 20+ hours a week through the new year, you can make some serious cash! To find out who is hiring, check out your local Target, World Market, Walmart, or any other of your favorite stores.

I hope these tips make your holiday season a little merrier, brighter, and greener! Do you have any tips for making extra Christmas money? Please share them in the comments!

Please Note: This post may contain affiliate linking. While these links don’t cost extra for you to use, a percentage of all sales made through these links will help fund future Side Hustle Mom content.

How To Make Money With Instacart: Is It A Great Side Gig?

Please Note: This post may contain affiliate linking. While these links don’t cost extra for you to use, a percentage of all sales made through these links will help fund future Side Hustle Mom content.

I am one of those weird people who does not mind grocery shopping.

Actually, let me rephrase that: I am one of those weird people who does not mind grocery shopping as long as I am ALONE and do not have my two busy boys in tow!

Since grocery shopping by myself is somewhat of a luxury in this stage of life, I have learned to utilize any help I can get, which includes Amazon Prime Now, Walmart Grocery-to-Go, and Instacart.

Speaking of Instacart, did you know that you can make either some extra money or a pretty decent living by shopping for/delivering groceries to others?!

Yes?

No?

Either way, let us dig in a bit more:

How to Make Extra Money with Instacart.png

What is Instacart? Instacart is a delivery service that guarantees orders in 2 hours or less!

What began as a small startup in 2012, Instacart has grown dramatically in the last 6 years, expanding from only a few California towns and grocery stores to nationwide service and exclusive partnerships with Kroger, Costco, Safeway, and more.

How does Instacart work?

To get started, buyers simply log-in to their account via computer or app (both Android and Apple), choose which store to shop from, place their order (big or small; Instacart does it all!), and schedule a delivery time.

That’s it!

Now for the important question: How can you work for Instacart and just how much can you make?

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Obviously, those using the app need someone to do the shopping and delivering, which is where we — the side hustlers of America — come in!

There are two ways to work for Instacart: As a full-service shopper and as in-store shopper, which vary in terms of hours and responsibilities. As per Instacart, full-service shoppers both shop and deliver orders (and are independent contractors), while in-store shoppers do just that — shop/compile orders in store.

Whichever route you decide to go, Instacart offers flexible hours and an easy way to make money either full or part time!

How much can you expect to make with Instacart?

This one will obviously vary depending on your hours and location (as you will probably make more in a bigger market than you would in a rural town less than 20K), but we have somewhat of an idea, thanks to a recent survey from Indeed:

Delivery Driver - $12.69/hr (plus tips)

Store Shopper - $12.72/hr

Shift Lead: $16.06/hr

Personal Shopper: $16.29/hr

Brand Ambassador: $17.32/hr

Let’s do the math: Say you work full-time as an Instacart independent contractor and work an average 40 hours per week. If you do the math ($12.69 x 40 x 52), you will make a base $26,395 per year, plus any tips you make.

Obviously, this doesn’t sound like a sustainable full-time job, but think of this: If you work as either an independent contractor or part-time employee and drive either in addition to your current job or around your kids’ schedules, you can make some great extra money for the holidays, vacations, savings, or anything else you may need.

Just 10 hours a week as a driver would give you an extra $126.90 a week (before any tips), which puts you at an extra $500 per month! That’s not a bad start toward your new car fun, is it?

Instacart is currently available in 38 states (you can see a full list here) and is available for anyone 18 and older who has a smart phone, a clean background check, and can lift 40+ pounds.

Does this sound like a perfect side gig for you? If it does, click here to learn more and to apply!

Have you ever worked for Instacart? If you have, please share your experience in the comments!