Pink Up and Join the Cause!

As regular readers to this blog may know, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009. It was a rough year and she underwent a lumpectomy, radiation therapy and hormonal therapy. She was strong and brave, and has a good projected outcome. That being said, my sister and I have an increased risk for developing breast cancer. That’s scary! But my sister and I are not the only people at risk – yes, we have an increased risk, but according to the American Cancer Society breast cancer is the most common cancer among women aside from skin cancer. It is possible that 10 million women could die from this disease in the next 25 years. That means your sisters, your daughters, your mother, aunts, grandma, wife and even you could develop breast cancer.

Up until now, I have always tried to take part in my local Race for the Cure put together by Susan G. Komen for the Cure, but it was never a huge commitment I made. This year, as you can imagine the cause hits home a little more.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure
This organization is the largest breast cancer movement in the world. It has invested $1.5 billion in saving lives, empowering people, ensuring quality care and supporting science to find a cure. It began in 1982 and has grown to bring together the world’s largest network of breast cancer survivors and activists. An easy way to support this phenomenal organization is through the Race for the Cure. The Race for the Cure is the biggest 5k run/walk in the world. Many locations throughout the world organize a Race for the Cure and it’s easy to join one to do your part. Click here for a link to find your local Race for the Cure.

My Team
I have formed a team for family and friends that want to walk with my mom. Our team name is Team Twin Peaks (lol!). If you live in Ohio and want to join our team, you are more than welcome – the more the merrier! Click here to go to our team page to sign up. If you don’t live in Ohio, but want to support my team, you can make a donation to either my team or my personal page by clicking here.

Whether you join the cause by taking part in a run/walk or by donating, you are making a difference. Every little bit help brings us one step closer to a world without this horrible disease. I urge you to pink up and join the cause today!

Photo credit: Copyrighted by Bobbie Peachey, http://webclipart.about.com

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

I have to admit I’ve been somewhat of a slacker today. The weather is just too beautiful to stay inside and it’s St. Patrick’s Day. I love St. Patrick’s Day not only for the abundance of cheap green beer, but because every year in Ohio it’s one of the first few days of the year that is sunny and somewhat warm. You know, the type of day – where you can actually smell spring in the air.

Aside from today, I’ve been very busy with private client work. Yay! I think this month will end up topping last month and I may meet my goal of doubling my monthly income from last year. I’ve also had a wave of creativity and have a list of about 25 post ideas. So, stay tuned because more interesting stuff is coming, I swear. But for now, I’m off to finish a project, adorn my green and go find a beer.

Happy St. Patty’s Day!

Okay, so it's not green, but it still looks great!

Unexpected Expenses

Last week I reported that I had the best month yet in February. Doesn’t it just figure that as soon as I say it, unexpected expenses pop up out of nowhere? Good thing I had such a good month. So far this month, I’ve had to pay taxes – okay, I knew this was coming and I did indeed save enough. But I found out that for next year I have to pay quarterly taxes which means that the first payment is due in April. Also with my taxes, I found out that I should be saving more of what I make. Last year I saved 30% of everything I made, but my accountant recommended that this year I strive to save 40% of what I make. To me that sounds crazy. I mean that’s almost half of my income, but I would rather save too much than not enough so I think I’ll be taking his advice.

On top of taxes, the clutch went out in my car. There’s nothing I hate more than shelling out big bucks for car repairs when I hardly drive anyway – but I do need a car because I do occasionally meet clients, run errands and in general drive places.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that this happens to, but it just feels like as soon as I’m getting ahead the unexpected happens to take me right back to square one. It’s like hitting a brick wall. However, on a positive, with the unexpected expenses, I feel like a fire has been lit under me and I’m more motivated than ever to keep the good month I had last month going.

Okay, I’m done with my mini rant. Thanks for listening:)

Best Month Yet!

As I’ve worked diligently the last few days to invoice and collect final payments for my work in February I’ve noticed something – February was a great writing month for me. For the first time since starting this journey, I went an entire month without having to be dependent on writing for a content site. This was one of my goals for the New Year and I am thrilled that I have already met it! What this means is that last month for the first time, I had enough private clients to make ends meet. This is so exciting for me I smile just thinking about it.

This doesn’t mean I have stopped looking for new clients – in fact, I actually had some free time in February where I could have fit one or two new clients or projects into my schedule. This is great because while I still look for clients, I can be more selective about who I take on and the pay rate that I’m willing to accept.

The fact that I was busy solely with private clients last month also means that I made more in the month of February than I have made in any previous month. I’m still not quite at my goal of doubling my income or of making what I was making in my full time job, but I made a significant improvement in it last month and this month is promising to be even better by far.

All in all, not only did I make more last month, I also worked less. Now, you’re probably wondering what I did with my free time if I worked less and wasn’t busy churning out articles for a content site? Well, I worked of course – I don’t call myself a work-alcoholic jokingly. It is still one of my goals to get published in glossies, so with my extra time last month I sent out pitches to magazines and I’m hoping to send out more this month. While I have already gotten a few rejection letters back, I’m not upset; I figure I’ll get a lot more of those before I get an assignment. I also started reading my stockpile of writing books especially those dealing with pitching to magazines. I’m hoping to improve my pitches this month.

For the month of February I couldn’t be happier with my progress and fingers crossed, perhaps March will be the month where I can finally start building up my savings account again!