Planning Your Monetization Mix is covered in DAY 4 of the Action Guide. It is a critical GO/STOP step in the C T P M process. Get feedback on your chosen Monetization Mix for your new business; or get tips on which monetization options work best for your niche.

Moderator: Sheri from Uneeda

#1348636 by Julie from Adona
Mon May 30, 2016 4:55 pm
Louann, a few questions if I may. :oops:

Do I understand your dropship sequence correctly?

A visitor arrives on your site.
After some looking around they buy something(s) from you.
This transaction goes through YOUR shopping cart.
Funds are deposited into your account.
You turn around and place that customer's order with your wholesaler.
The wholesaler assembles and ships the order with your labelled packaging and invoice.

My questions...

1) It is possible that you will have things shipped from different wholesalers? Because the packaging is all yours it looks like it's all from you?
2) Do you assign an order number? Or use one from the wholesaler?
3) YOU are physically entering the order into the wholesaler's system. Do you use a 'discount' code or other arrangement?
4) How often do wholesalers drop products that they'd been carrying? A problem or just part of the business?
5) Do you have a contract with the wholesaler? Any special terms that you didn't anticipate needing?

Thank you. I love reading your posts and getting to cheer you on!

#1348655 by Wedding Flowers, Inc. from East Nassau
Mon May 30, 2016 7:43 pm

Hi, Julie . .

A visitor arrives on your site.
After some looking around they buy something(s) from you.

Yes - exactly. But remember that the product that the visitor is already "pre-warmed" to buy may not be a big money maker for me (such as a single corsage bracelet or an affiliate product) - but I lead them to my site because I want that customer to be exposed to EVERYTHING I sell. So they may come to my page simply following a design tutorial for a corsage. But when they followed that lead, they see I don't just have ONE - corsage tutorial. But I have a dozen or more. And everyone of those tutorials have links that go to my store site.

I "give away" the info on how to design a corsage - but I have LINKS that take them to everything NEEDED TO MAKE THAT CORSAGE. That includes the fresh flowers, the floral greenery, the ribbon, the flower picks and the finishing spray that florists use.

But wait - they are also shown (usually at the bottom of the tutorial) that I have OTHER tutorials - for bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces and church florals. Suddenly someone who was only interest on learning how to make a corsage discovers I have a lot of OTHER free flower tutorials. Of course - those all have active links to my store products to make THOSE designs.

1) It is possible that you will have things shipped from different wholesalers? Because the packaging is all yours it looks like it's all from you?

Lead back to your site. This exposes the interested visitor to everything you sell instead of just one itty bitty thing. This goes against everything taught early on. You were supposed to focus that landing page on SELLING THAT SINGLE PRODUCT - NO DISTRACTIONS. But hey, I like introducing lots of distractions - this is referred to as "cross selling" on online stores. Just like a supermarket that puts ice cream cones and toppings next to the freezer that contains the ice cream . . . you introduce products that can be used with the first product;

This transaction goes through YOUR shopping cart.

Yes - except for my true Affiliate Links (which lead the to my affiliates stores where they work to capture the sale and I thus make a commission for that sale) - all the things I sell go through a store I own. (I had one built for me using the ShopSite pre-made stores). Now someone can build this type of store for you so that everything operates correctly, the authority to have your customers use credit cards safely, etc. ... but I had to "STOCK THE STORE" - which means I had to upload the images of the products I sell, create a Product page for them including the descriptions and prices and then create a Category page - which groups similar products together (like ribbon) and thus all these Category pages lead to my Home Page .

Here is how my store looks:

It isn't perfect by any means - but this original store cost me only $1500 and I've paid for several upgrades. I'm negotiating right now to have another upgrade, but haven't finished getting bids. Now this new upgrade will cost me nearly $10,000 - but it is sorely needed right now to expand for the traffic I have. But this cheap little store has put through nearly a quarter of a million dollars in sales since I went online. This is growing more every year, since I've obviously expanded into the fresh flower market which has a much higher profit margin.

Funds are deposited into your account.

Yes - when a customer buys from me (either by Credit Card or Paypal) the money is automatically deposited into my business account. Thus I not only have the money I made as profit, I have the funds to buy the products that are shipped to them. Thus I don't have to keep "stock" on my shelves and wait for someone to buy them. I have no investment in the sale until I know that the products are sold. My wholesalers LOVE that I'm a cash customer - most wholesale flower distributors have to carry an enormous amount of credit on their books - waiting for florists to pay them on a monthly basis.

You turn around and place that customer's order with your wholesaler.

Yes. I simply pull the order off the website and e-mail it to the appropriate wholesaler who will fill the order. I then track the order on my "Shipping Board" - a very large corkboard that is color coded so I can see all my orders at a glance and know where they are and the status of each. This can get a little hairy at times - because a fresh order may be placed months in advance and I have to be sure those products go out on the right day as scheduled.

The wholesaler assembles and ships the order with your labelled packaging and invoice.

Yes. Shop Site has a packing slip which I forward to the wholesaler. I'm open with my customers that the boxes are being shipped out by a large wholesaler - so I don't worry that my wholesaler's name is on the shipping label.

1) It is possible that you will have things shipped from different wholesalers? Because the packaging is all yours it looks like it's all from you?

The packaging doesn't look like it comes from me. It looks like it came from my wholesale distributor. But the packing list on the inside is from me.

2) Do you assign an order number? Or use one from the wholesaler?

This is all taken care up by my ShopSite program. It automatically assigns the customer an Order Number, gives it to them immediately upon purchase with a "visual receipt" and then automatically sends them an electronic receipt of the same.

3) YOU are physically entering the order into the wholesaler's system. Do you use a 'discount' code or other arrangement?

Yes - but I do it by forwarding a shipping invoice generated by the ShopSite system. It looks like a packing slip and gives the pertinent info to my wholesaler that they need to fill the order. I e-mail this packing slip to my wholesale distributor. I generally follow up with either a text message to her cell phone and/or follow up with an email that contains the printable packing slip.

I then go to my ShopSite "back office" and enter the info on my "manage an order" page. This is critical - since I note EVERYTHING on this page that has to do with orders. Did I call the customer to tell them something is out of stock. I make note of that phone call and the date. Did I email the order to my wholesaler? I make note of it on the "Manage an Order" page. Did I text it? Made a note of it. Was it shipped? I make note of it and send an auto e-mail with the tracking number to my customer. That means at ANYTIME I can pull up that "Manage an Order" page and see exactly what happened to that order and where it is in the system right now. You can not possibly keep track of this in your head. Making good and clear notes on every order helps keep stuff straight. My wholesaler can see this page as well and refresh herself on any special notes about any particular order (especially if she can't reach me by phone and there is a pressing reason to deal with this order!)

They drop ship every single time I pass them a packing slip. Mostly by FedEx. I have had something in my own personal stock that may be out of stock at the warehouse and I ship that product by USPS. But I would say 97% - 98% of the time it is packed and shipped by fedex by my wholesale distributor. If they don't have a product - I may find a different wholesaler to fill the order or contact my customer and tell them it's out of stock and offer either a refund on the unstocked item or offer to substitute something else. Most elect for me to substitute.

So I'm not really "physically" entering the order - I'm simply forwarding the packing slip automatically generated by my ShopSite store system.

4 ) How often do wholesalers drop products that they'd been carrying? A problem or just part of the business?

It's just a part of the business. Manufacturers discontinue products all the time and don't generally notify the wholesaler or I. If a product is no longer available, I simply call or contact the customer and tell them and offer a substitute if I can. In the flower business, a season may end sooner than anticipated because of weather conditions. At that point, I just have to let the bride know and ask if she wants a substitute.

5) Do you have a contract with the wholesaler? Any special terms that you didn't anticipate needing?

I don't really have a "written contract" because I can have the order filled at any wholesaler I choose. But I do have a verbal agreement to be a customer of my different wholesalers and they agree to dropship for me and include a packing slip for my customers. This is no different that any flower shop ordering for their own shop. The shop is a CUSTOMER of the wholesaler and have provided a ReSale certificate (that means that you are purchasing wholesale in order to mark up to retail and sell to an individual customer and thus charge them sales tax.

True wholesalers don't charge me tax - that's up to me to collect the tax and pay it to the state in which by business resides.

I know this all sounds horribly complicated and I won't lie . . . . some of this stuff was WWWWAAAAAAAAYYYYY out of my "comfort zone". Like when I finally incorporated the business, thus truly separating my business from my personal holdings. The business has a checking account of it's own and I'm an employee of the company I own. The company (thru my accountant) issues me a paycheck like any other employer would. The business has to file a tax return as a corporation. Obviously I don't let the business make a huge amount of profit (thus having to pay corporate taxes). Instead I take out the majority of the profit as my payroll.

I was led down this path kicking and screaming all the way. Trying to wrap my head around corporate taxes stressed me so much that I hired an accountant to keep track of all my paperwork, bills, tax filing, corporation fees and sales tax. That was just way above my comfort zone and I didn't want to get into difficulties with the IRS.

When in doubt - hire an expert to do the parts of the business that will keep you on track and allow you to focus on sales. That's YOUR area of expertise.

I didn't WANT to learn how to work within the ShopSite program and learn how to create a product page. But with the help of an awesome Tech experts at Lexiconn (the hosting site of my website store) they've guided me thru the process. I'm no expert, but I can now put up product pages rapidly. I HATE changes and being forced to learn new programs - but obviously that is part of the whole online thing.

I do, however, greatly enjoy being able to work from home, set my own hours and indulge myself in this crazy wedding business without having to drive out to a different place of business and work for someone else.

There reaches a point when you have to STOP tinkering with you online business and settle down into creating content, creating products and promoting sales. If you spend more time DESIGNING the Look and Feel of your site than you do increasing content, you are in trouble.

Beautiful sites are amazing. Cool "special effects" and video can earn you compliments or admiration from other SBI owners. But in the long run your main goal should be churning out content that in turn is used to promote sales and then FILLING those sales orders.

If you've worked for nine years and not made any money than a few dollars from affiliates or ads . . you have got to step back and take a serious look at how you spend your time. I'm not scolding anyone for creating the most beautiful website ever. But do you want a gorgeous site or do you want a site that makes you money. Because you are on the clock as surely as if you were working for a business outside your home.

I doubt if anyone would go to work for someone in the outside world and work thousands of hours and get paid only a few hundred dollars. Start setting goals and WORK FOR YOURSELF! You deserve a paycheck big enough to warrant all the hard work you've done. I'm scolding myself, because my business is not anyway NEAR the place my original goals had envisioned.

But through these years I had to deal with a divorce, moving, renting/selling my house, recovering from stupid decisions by Google and trying to wrap my head around Pinterst. I should be SO much farther along. But I keep plodding along, adding more pins, more content, more products and trying to stay focused even tho I've had some very difficult setbacks.

But I still believe in SBI and wouldn't give up my website for the world!!


Wedding Flowers, Inc.
#1348659 by Mary from Mico
Mon May 30, 2016 8:56 pm
Wow Louann!

This is a real pearl and would go great with Ken's MakeIt series. Thank you for taking the time to share the details.

I've learned from my daughter in her new job that calling companies (or in my case schools....) is what "real" businesses do. They research the fire departments, electrical companies, and such that can use their safety products and give the names and addresses to the sales ladies to make the calls. It's not so bad as cold calls in that they offer to send their catalog or free samples - makes it more of a win-win.... It adds an offline element that can help online success.

I do not work full time with my sites and when I can work, it's usually in snatches like taking a break to read Louann's wonderful notes; yet when I do have more time I expect to start approaching schools and churches - at least by email.

Again, thank you Louann,

#1348669 by Wedding Flowers, Inc. from East Nassau
Tue May 31, 2016 6:28 am
You are so welcome, Mary!

I remember how early on I used to scour the forums. I was hungry for "success" stories. I wanted to know that this could be done - that you COULD make money on the internet. I had so many big obstacles. I had never really been on the internet that much before I started SBI - the closest I came was browsing E-bay and venturing to sell a few things online that way. I found out that I didn't have the nerves for live time auctions and that E-bay seemed to be making more money that I was! :roll:

But when I came across SBI . . you know what caught my eye? The fact that they TOLD me it was going to be hard. The fact that they didn't offer to let me make $5000 in the first month!! I was always really leary of something that sounded "too good to be true."

This is hard. I mean THIS IS HARD! VERY HARD! You have to really want to build your own business bad enough that you are willing to take some risks AND that you are willing to put in some long hard hours just as you would working for anybody in the "real world".

Trust me . . . I had done those long hours elsewhere. I came home so tired because I was going to school at night while I was working by day. I had two girls (the youngest 11) when I had to go back to work because my husband had a mental breakdown and just came home one day and told me he was quitting work. I didn't take him serious . . until he cleaned out his locker and brought everything home. My life turned upside down and I had to scramble to figure out what to do because he wanted to sit back, take anti-depressants and tell me not to bother him with anything so mundane as "bills". I wanted to have a breakdown . . but I just didn't have the time for it. I had to figure out a way to earn a living FAST!! So I went back to work AND school all on the same day. I was so scared about going back to school that I wasn't even worried about the job! :lol::lol:

Somehow we clung on by our fingertips, I finally settled in as a liscensed Radiology Tech at a fast paced health clinic and was STILL doing flowers on the side. My daughters grew up, my husband took a job with "no stress" . . . but with that was "no money" and we just kept trudging along. After my daughters graduated college and my oldest got married . . . I finally decided that I could let go of that stressful xray tech job and go to work full time with flowers. Little less stress - until they persuaded me to be the manager of the shop. Then it started getting more and more stressful again.

I finally had to find the courage to WALK AWAY. I literally leaned over in church and whispered to my husband, "I'm going to give Van (my boss) notice tomorrow." He stared straight ahead and didn't even acknowledge me. I decided to stay home, babysit my new grandchild and try to de-stress. But even then . . . I knew I had to find something else. Because it was hard making ends meet without my income outside the home.

I dabbled in doing flowers out of my home. (Stressful and very hard on my fibro). I tried selling on E-bay (they made more in commissions than I did) . . . I was just about to give up when I found SBI.

I liked what I read. I was scared to death, however, to punch that button to spend $299. What if this was a failure. How could we afford that much money? (Remember I had dial-up internet at that time - it was excruciating to watch those first videos!! LOL)

But I did it. I spent the money and then got lost in a maze of information that bewildered me and left me more confused than ever. What was a "sweet spot". What in the heck was a "keyword" How in the world would I ever figure out how to create pages when I really didn't understand how to build a page with the old "Block Builder" HTML code was a mystery to me and reading the forums sounded like a foreign language to me.

So don't tell me that I was smarter or that I knew a lot more than ANYONE else who has ever had the courage to punch that button and buy that $299 subscription. It was HARD!! But I either had to make it work or give up and go to work again outside the home. I sure didn't want to give up babysitting my grandbaby (who just turned 10!!!) so somehow I had to figure this out.

I survived Panda and I survived Penguin without a scratch. But Pinterest and Google Images hit me like a ton of bricks at the same time that my husband of 33 years told me he wanted a divorce. Now my life was turned upside down (AGAIN!!) right at a time that the Internet was doing the craziest things ever.

But I survived. I'm here and my website (God willing) is still growing. I admit my days are spent a lot more on managing orders than writing content. Spring, Summer and Fall are the busiest times and I try to cram as much content time in the winter months as I can.

But your post got me to thinking and digging. Reports show me that besides churning about $250,000.00 out in sales in my little one-horse store, I've also earned almost $186,000 in Adsense over the years. I've probably made around $40,000 or more on affiliate commissions since I started. (These are all rough guesstimates). All in all - I've probably averaged at least $40,000 a year (not counting the very first year when I didn't make a dime - I only built pages) from my website. Now I've spent some of that income on experiments, building a store, etc. . . .

Now $40,000 per year may not seem like much to some other people and I know there are other SBI'ers that have made a great deal more than I have and retired or living on beautiful islands with no income taxes. But for me . . . this is more money than I made OUTSIDE the home as an XRay tech or as a florist. So I'm happy. :D I feel like my store is growing and showing great potential for future sales now that I've added fresh flowers to my store. I'm gaining new distributors and think I'm going to get some great growth IF I don't have another rock dropped on me squashing me flat (like Pinterest or Google!! :lol: My goal is to work less in the future and be making $100,000 + in the next few years.

Hang in there. . . I hope you don't think I tell you these figures to brag. I've had to work HARD for that little amount per year. But I wanted to be realist with you and let you see where SBI has taken me over the years. It's growing and I think I have potential for a great deal more.

If I can do it . . . you can too. Just don't give up on yourself or your dreams. <3
#1348671 by Elizabeth from Chatham, Kent UK
Tue May 31, 2016 8:41 am
Oh Louann - thank you so much.

I know how hard you've worked and you've given and shared so much with the rest of us, even when times were tough for you.

You have worked very hard as well as helping and deserve to be making that $100,000 a year, very soon.


#1348685 by Karen from Mackey
Tue May 31, 2016 4:43 pm
Louann, Thanks for posting. Sometimes I need to hear that others can and do succeed especially when those outside of SBI say that what I am doing is foolish.
#1348691 by Wedding Flowers, Inc. from East Nassau
Tue May 31, 2016 6:14 pm
Love you, Cath! I never forgot how much fun we all had in Chicago! :lol: Has it really been that long ago??? Coming to Italy is STILL on my bucket list! I'm so jealous of Lori and Steve!

Karen . . . I have a hard enough time not listening to those voices in my head to pay much attention to those outside of SBI! LOL! Everyone needs to be motivated. I worry sometimes that being so direct will come across as bragging . . . but in the beginning I longed to know what somebody meant by "winking" and saying "I do VERY well!"

Really? What does that mean? Does very well mean you pay the electric bill with your earnings or do you pay your house payment? 'Cause I wanna know if "very well" means a few hundred bucks or a significant extra $1000 or $2000.

You CANNOT tell someone else what they will earn with SBI. What I CAN tell someone is that you are going to have to work very hard for that money. You cannot throw up a couple hundred pages, fiddle endlessly with the "Look and Feel" and think you are going to compete with your top competitors that may have brand names, a huge marketing budget and sometimes a television show or magazine with ".com" tacked on the end.

This isn't the 1990's when all you needed to be successful was an e-mail list. Back in those days EVERYBODY opened every e-mail because it was such a novel idea! Now you're lucky if your marketing e-mail isn't automatically detoured to the "spam" box.

I can tell you, however, that the market is growing. Even "grandmas and grandpas" are getting online and people are getting used to have everything they want shipped directly to their door.

So that moves us BACK to the point where I say (instead of racking your brain figuring out what new invention you can come up with) is look around, see what some small time specialists are creating or doing and see if you can figure out how to market that product for them. There are opportunities everywhere. I just don't have enough hours in the day to do everything I know I should be doing! LOL!
#1348718 by ken-admin
Wed Jun 01, 2016 12:56 am
What a terrific story, Louann!!

I REALLY love the ENERGY! :-)


It's incredibly coincidental, too. I've been writing a series on hashtags, a topic that many SBIers know little about. Part 1 of 2 (so far) starts here...

Hashtags don't make much difference at Pinterest, of course, so I suspect that I've found your post more interesting than you'll find mine!


The other coincidence, and you are a tremendous example of it, is in the post that I made a few hours ago at LinkedIn... ... e-ken-evoy

The core message is that monetization models change. Traffic doesn't bounce much anymore (Google stable-to-positive since Aug/2013), and there are more sources, such as Louann shows. But monetization models evolve and passive monetization pays less well than it did years ago. And yet...

Too many people stick with passive monetization (ex., Google and AdSense), where you have the least control and basically get "told" (by your check size) that you're making a little less each year for more exposures.

Some give up. YOU adapted, Louann!


That said, too many don't want to "go active" like you are doing. Folks will get excited and congratulate you, as well they should. But we know, after all this time "doing SBI!," that many will revert to content creation (social and site) and PLAN to do something different.

I hope many do more than just plan...

Just do it! :-)

And for those who don't, Trafeze is on the way. Speaking of which...


Your story also dovetails wonderfully with Trafeze (getting close!). Traffic-builders (who under-monetize passively) and product-sellers (most of whom do not also have the time to build their own traffic other than by buying ads) will meet in a "Uber of Monetization" network.

You, for example, would be able to sell more flowers by doing a promotional deal with a site with high traffic for flowers. Or vice-versa - you may find someone selling some sort of flower-related product. She'll thank the day that she lucked into Trafeze and found you to distribute!


One thing...

It's not clear whether you consider what you do as having developed your own traffic. I do, ESPECIALLY if your distributors are shipping under your own brand. You have assembled/are assembling regional distributors while "little old you" are the face of a business that is selling flowers nationally.

Your marketing, presentation, traffic building and customer support are all signs that you have "Made It!" :-) You don't have to grow the flowers to make them YOUR product.

Those interested in doing what Louann did should read Make It!...

There are tons of higher-paying ACTIVE monetization models than AdSense&Affiliate. And they don't have to be super-active. YOU are in control. For example, I'd rate Nori's 2 models about a 3-4/10.


Congratulations, Louann! :-) Keep on growing!

All the best,

P.S. Louann, as I build out the series of articles on social media (eventually to consolidate everything into an Action Guide for social!), we'll be covering each major social channel with a "fast start and key strategies" to enable folks to get the 80-20 out of whichever social media fits their niche best.

I'd like to have someone get in touch with you and pick your brain for the key things you've done to grow out your Pinterest account into such a success. Is that OK?
#1348719 by Elizabeth from Chatham, Kent UK
Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:03 am
Oh yes Louann - I'd like to see your brains picked regarding Pinterest. I have tried so many times to get something going with Pinterest but can't get my head round it!


#1348739 by Wedding Flowers, Inc. from East Nassau
Wed Jun 01, 2016 3:35 pm
I'm rather embarrassed that I haven't been following closely as to exactly what Trafeze is all about. :oops:

I get flooded with so much stuff - not only from Sitesell but from my wholesalers and my affiliates AND my own store hosting that I simply can't follow it all. Somewhere squeezed in there I have to do my daily business and try to grow my future.

But IF Trafeze is bringing sellers/manufacturers of products together with MARKETEERS of products . . . this is what I've hoped to do for many years. Instead of just selling some products that I don't carry in my own store (but that relates to the wedding business) - I want to have OTHER SITES market MY PRODUCTS on their wedding sites.

I want to do what Commission Junction (used to be CJ) does - pull sellers together with marketeers (who make a commission on what they sell). The only difference is that instead of MAKING the commission I want to be PAYING OUT THE COMMISSION to other websites to market my product.

My biggest fear is that my business right now depends on ME. That means if I get sick or hit by a truck - suddenly my business is in the "DEAD ZONE" - with no one passing on the orders. I keep trying to pull someone in to learn the ropes - but that is harder than it sounds when everyone in my family have such busy lives.
#1348774 by ken-admin
Wed Jun 01, 2016 8:52 pm
Hi Louann,

Yes, that is what Trafeze will be, except it's going to be free (we make our profit on the volume! ;-) ).

Go to...

[Domain Private]

... and sign up. This one, you'll notice, is much easier to present and "sell" than SBI!. Only takes a few minutes, zero risk. No need to do a thing even if you are accepted.


I'm writing, though, for other reasons. There are tremendous lessons in your original post and in your "online store" post...

We'll be linking to them from the Make It! series, incorporating small bits here and there into Make It! where your info adds to the series.

But this is the one that knocked me out. You've taken some major gut punches...

That didn't stop you, though. You got up off the mat twice as determined to save you and your family. Not because you WANTED to but because there was no option. That's good old-fashioned gumption, something too many people in this world lack.


There are even some nice nuggets in this short post…

I've sent this to Marketing and Content - there are a ton of learning moments in those 4 posts.


I admire what you've done and how you've done it! I highly recommend these 4 posts to all.

Louann, keep growing (adding a key person is critical _> 1+1= 3 at your stage).

#1348777 by Mary from Mico
Wed Jun 01, 2016 9:44 pm
Hi Louann!

You are outdoing yourself this week. Thank you so much for your work helping here, especially during your very busiest season!

I apologize for taking so long to post. I've waited to write this when I had a longer stretch of time to be sure to answer your note well. I usually check the forums when I have a snatch of time, but this deserves a good quiet moment – which I think I have - till two sons run in for the next thing and three daughters return home from running errands. (I AM SOOOO GLAD TO BE HOME WITH THEM! Thank you Ken and SBI!)

Yep, I'm hungry for success stories. Mea culpa! Actually, we were one of them till Penguin or something hit in 2012. We are very glad for what we've done with SiteSell already. I just need to figure how to jump to Pinterest like you've done. I hate what Google images did to your site. It's like another Pinterest. Just think if Google were to change for you for the positive! $100,000 might become $1M!

I really dislike Social Media and so heartily agree that the info needs to be on my site, not their sites! Oooo how I hate when someone says "Pinterest says…." although I do look forward to studying your Pinterest info here and have followed your account so as to try to do some of what you've done.

You're right about the hard work and, on the other hand, this hard work is so much easier than being away from the children, driving somewhere else, not having something constructive for the children to learn - when as a result of working on our sites ours have learned to be technically creative and fairly web savvy, etc. This is so much better than working somewhere else for me. We really do net more as a family.

I am so proud of how you persevered and did so much with starting school and a new job. That was huge! I know I'd hire you as a manager any day! :-) I was so sad to read of your husband's awful trick. I'd think that by 33 years we'd be safe for the future. Sending prayers for you and all of us….

I so know your joy at the income you've received. Like I wrote above; we net more as a family, and even for my efforts as an individual, than what I could earn in our locality – especially if you add in the expenses of my being outside the home, even though "my" income is rather minimal right now.

I don't think you're bragging at all. I see your generosity in posting and in revealing as a real help to me and to others. It helps very much to see concrete numbers in a concrete situation. Three of our first few years we were earning about half what you mention with A&A and ebook sales, so my goal is simply to regain what we've lost since those days. Our products keep us "hanging on" waiting for traffic to rebuild.

I'm excited about your new plans and additions! You'll make it. You've got good plans, experience now, and a great attitude!

End note: Now I see your other notes and Ken's posts. You are both so helpful, and I've put Ken's article on my task bar. Ken's another one who's held on for the ride and he's right: You've adapted. He knows the pain. I look forward to reading what you write about Pinterest. I'm especially interested in whether this is your main format for pinning:

Again and again, Louann, thank you for posting.

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