Cash Money: $6,605 in August Income and Blog Updates

I work hard for my money...nuh nuh, nuh nuh

I work hard for my money…nuh nuh, nuh nuh

I know, I know.  I’m a little bit slow.  What can I say?  As you know, we’ve been busy getting our house ready to sell and looking for a new one.  And unfortunately, we haven’t found any houses that we absolutely love yet.  And, if our house sells in the next few weeks, I’m afraid we’re going to end up in an apartment until we find something we like.  The thought of apartment living with two small children makes me want to freak the *F* out.  However, I would much rather tough it out than buy a house that we really don’t want.  I’m so stressed about all of it, but it’s hard to plan when I don’t know what’s going to happen.  Sigh.

Anyway, it’s time for my monthly cash money update.  In case you missed my income updates from the last two months, here they are:

Cash Money: $7,230 in June Income, Blog Updates, and Goals

Cash Money: $7,083 in July Income and Blog Updates

Due to the fact that Greg’s car needed repairs and my laptop died, August sucked in terms of spending.  However, I did pretty good in terms of income, especially considering the fact that I was totally preoccupied with my husband’s career troubles.  So, without further adieu, the total amount of money of cash money that I grossed as a self-employed goddess in August was……*drumroll, please*


This total includes all of the money that I made from my various streams of income:

  • Credit Card Sales
  • Consulting
  • Freelance writing
  • Affiliate advertising

Cash Money Details

Please remember that I make the majority of my income from a variety of freelance writing jobs, not my blog.  Also, please keep in mind that this is my pre-tax income.  I pay taxes quarterly and will be writing a $7,000 check to Uncle Sam in the next few days.  (Ouch!  That hurts!)  However, this is the grand total of my income after expenses.  Thankfully, my expenses are super low.  I basically wear pajamas and I use the two computers that I already own.  I did have to replace my laptop in August, but the expense didn’t eat up too much of my income.  And regardless, I can’t work without a laptop!  Here are my expenses for the month of August:

  • Staff Writing: $100
  • Blog Hosting: $12
  • Internet $16 (they gave me a credit last month because I complained, usually it’s $35)
  • Laptop and Software: $500

Aside from my unusually high expenses, August was pretty bangin’.  When I left my job in April/May, I set a goal of grossing 4K per month in order to replace my income.  So far, I’ve been leaving that goal in the dust.  And, I expect September to turn out about the same.  I’ve got a ton of freelance writing projects in the works and was recently asked to write a weekly post for a big name travel site as well.  I’ll let you know how that goes!

A lot of people have asked me how I get the majority of my freelance writing jobs.  And the truth is, most of them come from my blog.  I don’t really look for writing jobs anymore.  They find me and I make it easy by responding to emails and inquiries at lightening fast speed.  If you’re interested in starting your own blog, make sure to check out the post I wrote about how to get started:

Quit Your Day Job: How to Start a Blog

Likewise, if you are interested in hiring me for the variety of skillz that I offer, please feel free to contact me through my contact form!

In other news, Greg starts his new job in a few weeks and I am sooooo ready for that to happen.    Even though we’ve covered our expenses and then some, I haven’t enjoyed being a one income family, even for a short amount of time.  And, he is totally distracting!  Even though it’s not his fault, it’s been really hard to concentrate during the weeks that he’s been home.  Once he goes back to work, I’ll be ready to refocus and get on a regular schedule again.

How did your August income turn out?  Did you meet your goals or exceed them?  Let me know in the comments!


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About Holly

Holly Johnson is a wife, mother of two, and frugal lifestyle enthusiast. She is the co-founder of Club Thrifty and a staff writer at Get Rich Slowly, Frugal Travel Guy, and U.S. News and World Report's "My Money Blog." Holly has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger Personal Finance, Fox Business, and Daily Finance.


  1. Hey Holly,
    Have you thought of incorporating yourself into an LLC or S Corporation so that you can pay a tax rate of 15% instead of a regular tax rate. Under the Corporation you can also open a SEP IRA, and based on earnings you can stash away 25% of your “profits” which is your free lance income.
    charles@gettingarichlife recently posted..Spreading The Aloha LinksMy Profile

  2. wow, you’re doing so great being a freelancer, Holly! I just started in a new job in August, which makes things a lot more easier financially speaking. It sure is lovely not being dependent on student loans anymore.
    The Norwegian Girl recently posted..Parliamentary Election Night! – An insight into Norwegian PoliticsMy Profile

  3. Nice work Holly! Do you have a target income at which you’d be satisfied? Or maybe it’s more like a number of hours you’d like to work and whatever money you can make in those hours is fair game. Just curious how you think about it.
    Matt Becker recently posted..Buying a Car: Should You Pay Cash or Get a Loan?My Profile

    • My goal was to gross 4K per month. Anything over 4K is wonderful =) Some weeks I work 30 hours and others I work 50. I just work as much or as little as I need to. I actually like the fluctuation. Keeps things interesting!

  4. Impressive as usual Holly, and in the middle of all the job-moving and house-searching stuff too! Hope you guys find the right place quickly.
    FI Pilgrim recently posted..Planning To Have Kids? Don’t Buy That Minivan Just YetMy Profile

  5. Well done, Holly! We had a pretty normal income month in August, it might be slow for the next few months as Mr PoP builds up his sales pipeline in his new position.
    Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies recently posted..Does Your To Do List Define Your Life?My Profile

  6. Wow, that’s really a good number. You are doing pretty good inspite of those unexpected expenses. I hope you will be more happy once Greg brings in that second income to your family.

  7. Way to go! Great job in August! Hope you find a house to avoid the dreaded apartment!
    kelly @stayingonbudget recently posted..Side Hustle Goal BreakdownMy Profile

  8. $7k for your quarterly taxes? I pay like 5% of that for mine haha but then again it sounds like you’ve made a lot more money through your side hustles than me (you are doing it full time, after all!). I should really look more into credit card sales. I’ve had a few and they are a nice chunk of change, but I honestly haven’t focused on affiliate sales – including credit cards – for probably half a year.

    Nice job on the income this month!
    DC @ Young Adult Money recently posted..3 (More) Ways My Wife and I Save MoneyMy Profile

    • It’s my full-time job, remember? I don’t have anything withheld. I also know that I’m overpaying some….because this is my first year paying this way.

  9. Well done! August was super slow but expected since most advertisers are on holidays, September is off to a great start!
    Pauline recently posted..August blog income and stats recapMy Profile

  10. Wow good job Holly! $7k in freelance income is killing it!
    Jordann @ My Alternate Life recently posted..Personal Finance is not that HardMy Profile

  11. Good job! You are doing awesome!

  12. Great work Holly! That’s really cool you’ve gotten to the point where you really don’t have to look for freelancing gigs anymore. I have gotten a few inquiries myself and really hoping to grow that more in the near future. August was really good for me as well, especially affiliate income wise.
    John S @ Frugal Rules recently posted..Fashionable and Frugal – How to Save Money on ClothesMy Profile

  13. Wow Holly that’s amazing! Where do you find your freelance writing work out of interest? Do you pitch for it or do clients come to you?
    debtfreeoneday recently posted..The Inevitable Journey To Debt FreedomMy Profile

  14. Congrats on your income success! I think if you’re willing to put in work and work hard, like you are, anybody can be successful at working for themselves. Freelancing jobs have just seemed to fall in my lap, too.
    Daisy @ Prairie Eco Thrifter recently posted..Six Fall Money SaversMy Profile

  15. Nice work Holly. August was my best month ever, but September is not shaping up that well for me. Not sure why, but I will get over it.
    Grayson @ Debt Roundup recently posted..Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard ReviewMy Profile

  16. Great work Holly! I hope everything settles down once Greg starts his new job!
    Connie @ Savvy With Saving recently posted..Early Birds Vs. Night OwlsMy Profile

  17. Another month, another congrats (especially since it was a hectic month for you guys)!
    Mr. Utopia @ Personal Finance Utopia recently posted..Wait Roth IRAs Actually ARE Evil!My Profile

  18. Nice job Holly! Glad to see you have made the transition to full-time freelance work. Now you can work for yourself and can make as much money as you have time to make. Best wishes for continued success.
    Free Money Minute recently posted..Graduate Debt FreeMy Profile

  19. Congrats! I’d love to make 6k in one month! Keep up the good work!
    Joshua ( recently posted..How To Protect Yourself From Identity Theft OnlineMy Profile

  20. Whoohoo! Are you still planning on posting a more in depth article on how you get your freelance jobs? I would be very interested to learn even more about the work you are doing. I had a good August too…I am very happy. September is off to a good start too I just need to set myself limits because I am starting to look like a zombie!
    Alexa recently posted..Confession: I’m Turning Into a ScroogeMy Profile

  21. Quarterly tax payments suck, but it’s awesome you are making enough money to have to pay in that much!
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted..Do I Need Vision Insurance?My Profile

  22. Well done, Holly!!! Congrats on another excellent month. So cool that people are approaching you for writing gigs! Have a pickle of a day!
    cj recently posted..Knowing When It’s Time to MoveMy Profile

  23. As someone starting out with my blog – i find it posts like yours an inspiration and makes me want to achieve more.
    getrichwithme recently posted..Something I Look Forwards ToMy Profile

  24. That’s awesome you are far surpassing your goals. I did too in August but it was spendy as well, plus my income was below project in July, and probably will be in Sept. unless some miracle job pops up. :(
    Budget and the Beach recently posted..I Suffer from Resting BitchFace SyndromeMy Profile

  25. Holly, those are great numbers. You are almost double your minimum for monthly income! I am truly impressed by anyone who can earn this much online consistently.
    Khaleef @ Faithful With a Few recently posted..7 Ways to Raise Cash in a HurryMy Profile

  26. Great job Holly! You really inspire me. I think I have to find a way improve my productivity with blogging, freelancing, n working. Any tips for a newbie? Thanks for sharing your successes. I hope to make that much soon.
    Romona Bradham recently posted..Monasez Monday Mentions 9/1/13-9/7/13My Profile

  27. Work it! August was the first month I have turned a profit on my blog, so that’s cool
    Nick @ recently posted..The Road to Retirement InfographicMy Profile

  28. It’ll be nice when you get a refund at the year since you are overpaying. Hopefully next year you’ll have a better grasp on your freelance income so you won’t have to pay as much quarterly. I do understand the fear of being penalized for not paying enough as my brother does pay a lot more in taxes because his wife is a freelancer for that same fear of IRS penalization. Better to be safe than sorry!

    Great job on the income though… I’d be happy making that at my day job! :)
    Tara @ Streets Ahead Living recently posted..All work and no playMy Profile

    • I know I’m overpaying this year but I’m okay with it. At least I can use this year’s taxes as a basic for formulating a tax plan for next year.

  29. Can’t wait to hear all the details about your gig on the travel blog! Look at you spreading your beautiful blogging wings! :) Congrats on a great August Holly!
    Girl Meets Debt recently posted..GMD: Not a Writer, Not Yet a (Legit) BloggerMy Profile

    • I know, right? I’ve really wanted to write about travel for a while and now I get to on a weekly basis. My new spot on Frugal Travel Guy is every Friday. Woot!

      Now I just need a place to write funny stories about parenting. Anyone?

  30. Great job as usual Holly! It’s amazing how you stay so consistent, exceeding your goals, even throughout all this craziness. I hope things calm down once Greg is working and you find your dream home!
    E.M. recently posted..Student Loan Debt: Update #4My Profile

  31. That’s an amazing number – not something I would ever even dream about.

    Congratulations on making the blog from home business work!

    It’s a dream that many chase, but most fail to achieve.
    No Waste recently posted..Net WorThursday – August 2013My Profile

  32. That is really great and well-deserved! Keep it up!
    Mike recently posted..Six Quick Ways to Improve Your FinancesMy Profile

  33. Dang that is awesome! What do you charge to write an article? Does it depend on the site you write for? Just curious as I have been looking into doing more freelancing in the future. thx
    Kyle | recently posted..Frugal Hack #12: How to Buy Discounted Gift CardsMy Profile

  34. Congrats on blowing your 4k/monthly freelancing goal out of the water! Looking forward to that day for myself.

  35. When you love your hubby, sometimes they can be really distracting! I hope it’s all good! ;)

    What a great feeling it must be to have left your job and be crushing it as far as income. Take that, old job! We aren’t crushing our old income just yet, but we almost make as much as we did and for half the hours. I don’t mind trading money for time. I let ten years slip past me and I never want that to happen again!

    Hope you can find a house sooooooon!
    Tammy R recently posted..Knowing When It’s Time to MoveMy Profile

  36. Way to go on that freelance income! I know that’s real work so it’s cool to see it paying off so well.

    Best of luck finding the right home, and I hope the timing works out so you can avoid renting for a bit.
    Done by Forty recently posted..Lessons from Chip KellyMy Profile

  37. “self-employed goddess” – You got that right!! :) Way to go and inspire Holly!

    Take care and all the best.

    lyle @ the Joy of Simple recently posted..What A One Gig MP3 Player Taught Me About Living!My Profile

  38. Ballin’ as usual, homie! Nice work. Keep that hustle up and keep us inspired. Lovin’ it!
    Jacob | iHeartBudgets recently posted..Four Figure Student Loans. W00t!My Profile

  39. Wow…Another good month for you. Keep doing that good job. Your current full time job is going well for you and you are your own boss.
    Demaish recently posted..Adapting to the no back to school lifeMy Profile

  40. Hi Holly:
    You list Credit Card Sales as a stream of income. What does that mean ?
    ~ C

    • It’s just another form of affiliate income although I don’t lump it in with the other affiliate income that I make. Basically, I get paid any time anyone signs up for a credit card through my site!

  41. My August income is low, not much different from prior months! It is good that I do not need this income to live.
    krantcents recently posted..3 Ways to Make Cents of HVAC MaintenanceMy Profile

  42. Well done!

    Thanks for sharing your earnings. I haven’t considered credit card affiliate programs as a monetization strategy, although that explains all the credit card reviews I’ve seen as I explore the personal finance blogosphere.

    One of the nice things about being self-employed, being able to do self-employed retirement plans where you can stash an amazingly large amount of your earnings to grow tax sheltered.

    One of these days!
    Jack recently posted..How to Gain Financial Freedom Playing CashFlow 101My Profile

  43. Great month, Holly! Our August was pretty crappy, but I am confident that things will change soon. Just a bit of extra work and my dumb luck kicking in and we’ll be settled! :)

    PS: Can’t wait to read more updates on your house hunting… maybe one titled “Found my Dream House”?
    C. the Romanian recently posted..You Think You Are Poor? Think Again!My Profile

  44. Hi Holly – very impressive income report! Saw you on Dollars & Roses. I always loves to hear success stories of people in different niches and how they make it work! Great job – good luck finding a house you love.
    Crystal recently posted..Fine Art at the LA County FairMy Profile


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