Sidetracked by the Side Hustles

I have to admit, I’ve kind of lost sight of what I intended this blog to be when I started out.

I’ve looked back on my home page, and see I have concentrated mostly on the side hustle end of it, while not paying much attention to the real reason I started it in the first place.

Granted, the side hustle part has been good because I have received so many lovely comments over the past few months. And for that I am grateful.

Disclaimer: Links within this post are either to my own products, or products I endorse. I may receive a small commission should you make a purchase through an affiliate link, at no extra cost to you. My blog is supported through commissions and sales of my products. Plus, if you like what you read you can show your support by pinning this post, sharing on social media, or buy me a coffee.  Thank you for your continued support.

However, that’s not the only reason I’m here.

As the second anniversary of my husband’s passing quickly approaches (less than a month away), I am reminded time waits for no one. On this date two years ago life was good. We had plans; we had a new home; and we were looking forward to growing old together.

Fast forward to today, and I am moving forward with life. I can never say I’m moving on…just forward. I thought I could live in the home we shared forever, but without him it doesn’t feel like home.

It took me a long time to realize that, which is why I will be moving into a new home. I’m not moving to forget him; it’s more so I can continue living. His pictures and keepsake urn will go with me, and be displayed on the mantle.

A person never really knows how they will react to a situation, or how views will change. For me, it has been months of learning who I am, and growing as a person. Truth be told, until you’re in that situation you’ll never be able to say just what you will do.

The acreage I’m buying has everything I want and need. Wide open space; a garage (no more sweeping snow off my Jeep, or plugging in the block heater when it’s colder than minus 20 C); huge windows throughout; skylights; a gorgeous view; a fireplace; a game room complete with pool table, shuffleboard, and poker table; a workshop in the back; mature trees; a huge kitchen; an office with a view; and plenty of space for family gatherings.

It’s all I could ever want in a home. Did I mention the 4 bathrooms and jacuzzi in the master bath? I think I might get lost in it. My hellions (aka Mickey & Merlot) won’t know what to do with so much space, and my dog will need some adjustment time as well. It’ll be an adventure for all.

I’ve struggled with being here alone; sometimes it’s just easier to be gone. I don’t expect anyone to know how I feel, because losing a spouse is different for everyone. I will say this though: if you know someone who has lost a spouse and they decide to move forward, don’t be too hard on them. If I’ve learned anything from the past two years, it’s do what makes you happy. Life’s too short to dwell on what can’t be changed.

So when I post about something other than side hustles, it’s because I’m trying to stay true to my original vision for this site. I’m over 50, and it really isn’t all that bad. It’s a time in life when kids are grown and have lives of their own; and are starting families of their own. (Proud grandma here.)

It’s a time to be grateful for all the things that went right in a day, and learn from the things that went wrong. We’re not perfect by any means; all part of being human. I don’t think it’s a bad thing to just stop and smell the roses, and do what works for you.

I have always done for others; now it’s time to do for me. I love blogging, and I love reading the comments you leave. If I can help just one person when I post, I’m happy. I’m not going anywhere, and plan on continuing my blog for a long time.

Side hustles is how I supplement my widow’s pension, and I will continue to share what I learn and come across. I will also, however, include my opinions and knowledge about life in general.

That said, what are your thoughts on life in general? Do you take it for granted, or live each day to the fullest?

Need a Vacation? Take It!

We all need a little R&R, and that’s just what I did.

I was given the opportunity to go to Mexico for a week, and instead of saying no I said yes. The old me would have declined, saying I had too much to do.

What I have learned in the last couple of years is that time waits for no one. Don’t pass up opportunities, because they may never come around again.

Something I have also learned is to enjoy life to the fullest, as much as you can. I’m still working on that aspect some days, because I probably spend too much time in front of my computer. But living in Alberta the winters can be quite nasty, so there’s no reason not to get in the computer time.

I know once the weather warms up and my yard is no longer a mudhole, I’ll be outside most of the time. I’m anxious for warm spring days and warming soil so I can plant my garden.

Disclaimer: Links within this post are either to my own products, or products I endorse. I may receive a small commission should you make a purchase through an affiliate link, at no extra cost to you. My blog is supported through commissions and sales of my products. Plus, if you like what you read you can show your support by pinning this post, sharing on social media, or buy me a coffee.  Thank you for your continued support.

Now, back to Mexico. It was a great trip, although it was too hot for me. This body doesn’t do well in 35+ degrees Celsius. I’m grateful our hotel room had air conditioning.

We went on a few little excursions, with the highlights being (in my opinion) a trip down the mountain in a tuk-tuk to the bottom of a 200+ foot waterfall, and seeing a mama humback whale and her calf on our coastline excursion.

The bottom of the waterfall that can only be accessed in tuk-tuks, bikes, or on foot. No cars on those roads.

It was my first trip ever out of Canada, so was exciting and a little scary at the same time. Now that I have gone once, I think a winter vacation to other destinations may become a norm.

If you feel as if you have too much going on and can’t get away, remember this: the world will NOT fall apart if you take some you time. If you run a business, leave the duties in the capable hands of your staff.

If you don’t have any staff, then simply let clients know you’re taking some time to recharge. Automate what you can, and the rest will fall into place. You don’t have to be available 24/7, 365 days a year. That will lead to burnout, which can have serious long-term effects on your body and mental health.

My vacation time gave me time to think about my own way of doing things, and I came to a couple of realizations.

  1. Life is too short to not take time for your own happiness.
  2. Your business/job doesn’t control you.

More on what I figured out on my vacation in my next post.

The highlight when I got back: the arrival of my granddaughter less than a week after our return. I’m so glad she waited, especially since I had a message from my daughter while we were away that said “Don’t be alarmed but…”


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3 Ways to Make Money with Homemade Bodycare Products

Dry skin. Chapped lips. Brittle hair. Read on to see how you can alleviate these problems for yourself and others.

Winter is setting in whether we’re ready for it or not. I think the hardest part for me is the minus 40 temperatures that are inevitable. It’s a good time of year to not have to drive to a job in town.

Disclaimer: Links within this post are either to my own products, or products I endorse. I may receive a small commission should you make a purchase through an affiliate link, at no extra cost to you. My blog is supported through commissions and sales of my products. Plus, if you like what you read you can show your support by pinning this post, sharing on social media, or buy me a coffee.  Thank you for your continued support.

I have been working on my Etsy Shops, recorded and published the second episode of my podcast, and spent some time making homemade lip balm.

A couple weeks ago I ordered some shea butter, cocoa butter, almond oil, beeswax pellets, lip balm tubes, and two ounce screw-top tins. I have a case full of essential oils so am working on trying out a few recipes to see what works and what doesn’t.

I’m making the balms and salves for my own use, plus to give to family and friends. I had considered making it to sell but in all honesty, it doesn’t go with either of my Etsy shops. I do however, plan on adding some printable labels to TOLA50Printables for those who do make and sell bodycare products.

Now that brings me to how money can be made with bodycare products.

1. Make products to sell.

The most common way to earn money with bodycare products is to make and sell them. With so many products on the market made in who-knows-where, it’s nice to know exactly what’s going into the lip balms and lotions.

Many people are wanting to take a step away from the commercially produced, chemical-filled soap, shampoo, lotion, etc. By making some high end products with simple ingredients you could potentially have an in within the health and wellness industry.

The nice thing is it really doesn’t take a lot to get started. I spent less than $100.00 on the supplies listed above, and most likely could have started with less. I’m sure I didn’t need 50 lip balm tubes or 48 screw-top tins, but when I ordered them I was still undecided as to what I was going to do.

There are a LOT of recipes available online and in books, but don’t be afraid to test and tweak. I have made a “medicated” pain relief salve using infused shea butter, but found it to be too hard. I remelted the salve and added in a little almond oil, so will be trying it to see if it’s easier to apply. Well, the applying wasn’t the hard part; getting it out of the jar was.

The lip balm I made was a 1:1:1 ratio, plus a drop of food grade essential oil for flavour. I do think another drop or two of oil would have been okay, as there is a hint of cinnamon but it’s definitely far from overpowering.

One thing I did learn while making the lip balm: have everything ready and work fast when filling the tubes. I was surprised at how quickly the mix cooled as soon as I started to pour it. The jar I mixed the ingredients in was almost too hot to hold with my bare hands, but it did not take long for the mix to cool.

I am a Young Living Distributor and have access to the best essential oils available. I use them regularly in my diffuser, in my cooking (food grade ones), and even for cleaning. There are some recipes in the catalog I want to try, especially the pain relief topicals.

Last winter when I was achy I would run a hot bath and add lavender and spearmint to Epson Salts, then soak for 15 – 20 minutes. It helped with the achiness plus my bathroom and bedroom smelled really good afterwards too.

Some things you can make are:

  • lip balm
  • pain relief cream
  • bath bombs
  • shampoo
  • hair conditioner
  • hand lotion
  • body lotion
  • soap
  • sugar scrub
  • body wash
  • shaving cream
  • body butter
  • shower bombs
  • deodorant
  • toothpaste
  • bath salts
  • …and more.

There’s really no limit to what can be made with a few simple ingredients, some essential oils, and some creativity. And for those of you who like to dabble in cannabis, it can be added to topical bodycare products too.

Medicated Salve and Cinnamon Lip Balm
2. Recipe Book

This is more the avenue I’m interested in taking. As I try different recipes and tweak them, I’ll be compiling an ebook. I personally do not want to have a lot of product on hand, so will just make enough for family and friends…plus possibly a local shop that is stocked with locally produced products.

I do not want to be worried about shipping products, or carrying an inventory. Plus I don’t want to have to worry about having product that will expire. Keep in mind that when chemicals aren’t used the product will go bad faster.

I do know some can be kept cold or frozen to extend its shelf life, but when one lives in a rural area a steady stream of local customers is a little harder to come by than in an urban area.

Plus, writing is right up my alley. I love to do research, trial and error, then put it all together into an ebook to help others. And as with my crochet patterns, my customers can make and sell the items I design/create.

The benefit to this method is the ebook only has to be written once, and I can sell it over and over again. It’s more of a passive income route than the active income that making and selling the products requires.

3. Teach a Class

With all of the options available online, teaching has become easier and easier.

I enjoy teaching others, but more through the written word. I know not everyone is like me, and platforms such as Skillshare and Teachable can be lucrative if utilized.

Whether you decide to make lip balm, body scrub, lotion, or bath bombs, showing someone else how to do it step-by-step can benefit your bank balance. You can choose one product, or do a series of products.

When you’re teaching others how to make the products, you’re also teaching them how to support themselves. Your class will be a combination of video lessons and handouts, which will ultimately do one of two things: help others create and build a bodycare business, or it won’t.

In Conclusion

You cannot control what your students do with your information once they have it. Some will be excited about it and follow your recipes and advice; and they will be the ones who thrive. Others will perhaps take the class and not do anything with what they have learned. That is not a reflection on you as a teacher. Some people are just like that.

One thing I do have to emphasize: no matter what you do, don’t ever promise your students they will earn X amount of dollars by taking your class (or reading your book). The materials you provide are for informational purposes only, and earnings are never guaranteed. It is up to the individual to make that happen; not you.

Have you or do you make bodycare products?

If you like what you read you can show your support by pinning this post, sharing on social media, or buy me a coffee.


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