30x30: Payments, Planes, & Products
Hola y'all! First, I’d like to say that I keep starting draft posts and because I don’t manually save them, they don’t save at all. Then I have to totally recreate the magical arrangement of words that I thought of before. Trust me, it’s no easy fete.
So, now that that’s outta the way. :) I hope you’re doing well and kicking ass in life. That’s optimal. However, if you’re not kicking ass, that’s ok too. Keep kicking anyway.
On this beautiful day, I’m happy to report that so far I’ve crossed off 3 things from my 30x30 list, which is only 10% (my husband has confirmed the math.)
However, a start is a start!
- I’ve successfully paid off my lowest school loan.
- I’ve traveled to a city I had never visited before.
- I created a brand and made profit (sort of). I’ll explain.
Paid that sucker off!
I have 3 school loans from undergrad all from different lendors. Once I graduated, even though they make you sign the exit papers stating all of the ways you’ve become enlightened on how to pay your money back, I had no idea how to even read my loan papers. Needless to say, starting to pay them back was a struggle because not only did my degree not help me land a job post-graduation, the job I did have was part time. So, no dough was rolling in any place. Also, one of my lendors was lowkey shady and because of it, I wouldn't return their calls since I had no idea of who they were. Eventually, I realized who they were because of a letter they mailed me, and payment got underway.
Thankfully, I have no loans with Sallie Mae who absolutely doesn’t care about you and would probably harass you for repayment if you were on your death bed. I’ve heard that they are horrible, but most lendors will work with you if you call them and explain your financial situation. They have different repayment plans and deferrments for when you realistically can only focus on getting the rent paid.
A word to the wise: get on top of these things! They can and will fuck up your credit if you choose to ignore them. Be an adult, and keep your finances in order. “Borrowing” money for school was just that, a loan, which you have to pay back (unless you're part of some forgiveness plan in which case, we can't be friends). Get on it! Paying what you can is great, but carving out pockets of money to throw at your loans will help get them down quicker. That cable bill you cut can now go towards that. That Target run that you didn’t take that probably saved you about $25 can go towards that too. You can do this! Do your research, stay consistent, and keep in contact with your lendors.
2. St. Louis - My journey to the west!
I got the very last minute opportunity to hop on a plane (following my husband for work) to St. Louis right after I had just returned home from attending a wedding in Charlotte. I was tired. I’m not used to high interaction and hustle and bustle for extended amounts of time. Going would cost me about a week's worth of adequate sleep and push me to be about $500 less fortunate than before. And yet, knowing that now, I’d still do it again! I actually enjoy traveling alone, and I had no real layovers this time (like, "running-to-the-next-gate-across-the-big-ass-airport-and-I'm-the-last-one-to-board" no real layover.. #stressful). I’ve always been fairly independent, and most times when I’m plane hopping, it’s because I’m following my husband while he’s working. Luckily, I have the option to work remotely, so as long as I have an internet connection I don’t have to miss work. BUT, I also have unlimited PTO, so there's that too.
Because I only took one vacation day and my husband was indeed in town for work, neither of us got to explore the city much. Honestly, I saw mostly the hotel I was staying in, but I like those kinds of vacations - chill, relaxed, comfortable, and on my own time. No full day itenary for me (unless I make it.. You know, that’s the whole “on my own time” thing.) I thoroughly enjoyed getting out of my element, seeing new things, and sneaking away a few days with the hubbs. Take a peak at a little of what I saw and did… and ate.
3. Hippie Juice is for sale!
I’ve always had a little of an entreprenuereal spirit in me. I, along with a childhood best friend, would brainstorm things we could make and sell to our neighbors. We’d think of items (useless things that no one in their right minds would want) that we could put in a catalog to hand out to people on our street. Of course, being in third, fourth grade, we didn’t get very far, but the spirit was there! I’ve also always enjoyed being creative. I wrote my first short story by the fifth grade, but had been writing little snippets of “stories” as I’d call them since the second grade. I had an American Girl doll, Addy, who I adored, and my mom would bring home yards of fabric that I would use to hand stitch clothes for her. That lead to sewing little things for myself (hardly ever good enough to wear in the light of day), making jewelry, sewing bags and pouches, decorating t-shirts, continuing to write poems and short stories, and most recently creating a spray.
I’ve never been much of a girly girl, prefering to change into my overalls and make mud pies after school versus paint my nails and play barbies (though I did both.) I really enjoyed being outdoors, showcasing my athleticism. I was very much a late bloomer, and honestly will still occasionally feel weird if I wear “too much” makeup or dress up when it’s not necessary. The frue-frue stuff has never been for me. And now to marry these two rants together...
I’m a hippie at heart, and I wanted to create something (check) that would align with my interests and personality, which isn't over-the-top feminine (check). At first I thought about candles, tried it, and it wasn't for me. At least not right now. Then I thought of creating sprays for different things - after a sweaty gym/workout session, during yoga practice or meditation, BUT I wanted it to smell good. My "smell good" is more like outdoors good, not cotton candy dreams good. More like a deep woods forest angel, not Victoria’s Secret Angel. You get my drift? And there's nothing wrong with those scents, I've enjoyed them myself and still do on occasion, but I wanted something that smelled of nature that was actually from nature.
So I created Hippie Juice, an essential oil-based fragrance that I dowse myself in for positive vibes, but that can also be used for meditation sessions, yoga practice, to liven up a stale room, etc. Using natural oils eliminates the likelihood of adverse reactions (though this is still very possible! Know your allergens.) and also has a theraupetic effect that segways into aromatherapy since natural oils can be mentally and physically beneficial.
One of my friends urged me to start selling this stuff (and took the beach photo. What up Ambeezy?!), and another friend gave me an opportunity to sell it at a community block party at her vendor table (thank you Sarah!). It was this amazing rallying of support for me, and I got over the hump of being “scared” of doing something totally foreign. It took quite a bit of work during that week to prep for it, but who cares? I think it's easy to get discouraged from doing things when we look at the big picture. Taking it step by step helps it become managable (most times) and at the very least, provides a starting place. Push past the discomfort. I promise it will be worth it. (Also, reiterating the fact that my friends were a HUGE help. They are wildly talented in their own rights so make sure you click on their links.)
Oh yea, I sold 6 bottles! :) Check me out: Hippie Juice
So, 3 of 30 down in the books. I have lots to do, and I’m excited about it! Are you working on any goals of your own? Any deadlines coming up? Any barriers? Share with meee! Hit me up on IG. I love hearing from you!