When my husband and I plan a big vacation, we think of creative ways to fund the trips. That’s what we did for our Las Vegas/Grand Canyon/Utah/Arches National Park/4 Corners trip a few years ago as one of our last “BabyMoons” before having kids. (I was actually pregnant in this picture but lost the baby a few months after this trip. But let’s not blame the handstand…)
Standing on Four Corners of four states, 6.27.11
My husband is fortunate to be able to do a lot of sidework in his profession, and I like to sell things. I keep a spreadsheet to keep track of our trip budget. (I create spreadsheets for everything, my mind works in tables!). So on one side, I list a breakdown of the expenses we’ll have during the trip. For the January 2014 Disney Marathon Weekend, it includes our plane tickets, park tickets, race fees, commemorative items, in-park and out-of-park meals, dogsitter fees, hotel room, souvenirs, etc. On the other side, I keep a running tally of funds we’ve raised through our hobbies. This “runcation” adds up. Especially when the registration fees alone for the 4 races we’re running add up to $595. Yes, we have to PAY that much to run 71.7 miles in one weekend. If my math mileage for (2) marathons, (1) half marathon, and (1) 10k is wrong, please blame Siri. And oh, Disney, why are your park meals so expensive? We’ve made 3 reservations this time: Be Our Guest, Portobello, and ‘Ohana.
My sister and I had to stop for this photo-op during the Princess Half Marathon! 2.24.13
While I use Ebay, Amazon, and CraigsList to sell things we no longer use, I also make handmade jewelry and sell it at a local glassblowing studio. I used to be more involved with jewelry-making. I participated as a vendor in seasonal craft shows, I maintained an Etsy shop, and I sold a lot on consignment at a few local novelty shops. Then I became a mom, and this particular hobby moved to the backburner. So now I primarily do orders for the studio 2-3 times a year. This summer I worked on their September order, for their autumn busy season of shows and festivals. I made 14 necklaces during E’s naptimes. The studio pays me upfront per necklace, which is much better than consigning them/waiting until they sell for payment. They turn around and sell them for up to $64 apiece. This was what I took to the studio this week:
On Thursday, I sold 14 more necklaces to the studio. The owners and I have come a long way in our working relationship. In the beginning, they were very selective about which pieces they would purchase from me; they never bought them all. If I made duplicates, they purchased only one of each. I began to learn their tastes in colors and designs, and they began to see which pieces were most popular with clients. I present necklaces in seasonal hues to them, or colors that matched their current Pandora line – green is the color right now. Now that they trust the product, they are okay with duplicate colors or necklaces. This week, with just a sweeping glance, they said, “we’ll take them all, they’ll all sell very well.” They wrote the check for exactly my asking amount, and asked if I could have another order ready for March. She also asked that I exclusively sell to their store and not to other local vendors, and I assured her that I’m doing as such.
Now only 4 months to go until this next big trip! An update on my training schedule will be on the blog very soon! Still plugging along!