$7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

Happy Monday and happy April everyone! March was another awesome month. I made a lot of extra income with all of my side hustles, and mainly life has just been going great. We bought our new car and decided that we also don’t want to sell our house anytime this year. We are pretty positive…

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: June 5, 2023

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure for more info.

Find uot how I made $7,862 from working at home. This is a great list!Happy Monday and happy April everyone! March was another awesome month. I made a lot of extra income with all of my side hustles, and mainly life has just been going great. We bought our new car and decided that we also don’t want to sell our house anytime this year. We are pretty positive that we are going to wait to do this. Also, today’s post is SUPER long. I am very sorry. Would you guys rather have me split this into multiple posts, or is one long post just fine?

I’m not sure if any of you remember, but me and W paid for a vacation for his parents to take. They left on Wednesday and will be coming home late tonight. I’m so happy that we were able to do this for them (because who doesn’t need an awesome Caribbean vacation?!) and without my extra income side hustles, I don’t know if it would have been possible. This is why I started doing all of the things that I do for extra income. Why not be super productive with my time after I leave the office?

In March, I made $7,862 in extra income, after most expenses. In case you are new to my blog, “Extra Income” consists of all income that I make that does not include my salaried job that I have in the financial services industry. Extra income also does not include any money that W makes, as he doesn’t do anything for extra income and is mostly commission at his work (so it fluctuates every month anyways).

I will say that this is not all super easy. None of it is. I spend enough time to make this a full-time job on top of my already full-time job. Luckily, I do enjoy what I’m doing so it’s not like I’m dreading anything. My goals that I have are also a great motivator. I just keep thinking about how badly I want my student loans gone, and also how badly we want a new house next year. Read further on my Extra Income page.

$7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals Shot 2013-03-31 at 9.54.01 PM

This is for the month of March and after most fees and expenses (expenses were a little over $900 and include payments for staff writing on my blog and work with FITnancials, PayPal fees, etc.) being taken out. March’s number above includes rent.


March was an AWESOME month and I hope everything only keeps increasing. Affiliate income has been going awesome and I’m glad that I started focusing on that more. Also, check out The Happy Homeowner’s blog if you want to read about how another blogger is being awesome and increasing her extra income by a lot.

I’ve come a long way from the just the beginning of last year when I was ecstatic about $50 in extra income in a month. Don’t get me wrong, $50 is still awesome, but I never thought that I would be to the point where I am today.


The new blog design here on Making Sense of Cents should hopefully be here this month! I’m excited to see how it turns out and what you all think of it. I’m sure it’ll look awesome. March was a busy month for the blog and I am really working on creating more awesome content. Also, a lot of you have been loving the debt payoff series lately. I do have a question though, is there a topic or guest post series that you would like me to start having? I always love hearing about personal experiences, so I always feel that hearing about how many different people accomplished a goal is important.

I also have a lot of post ideas for the month of April. I have the longest to do list in my phone and whenever I think of something, I write it down immediately.

Also, pretty much everyone knows about my blog now. It’s no longer a secret and now only a couple of people do not know. What a difference! I’m not sure how this will affect my blogging, but I might be switching to referring to our budget in percentages instead of actual dollar amounts. I have to have at least some privacy in our lives! Some people have asked why I don’t just fully become public, and well the main reason is because I OBVIOUSLY talk a lot about our lives and there are a LOT of personal things right here on this blog. Anyways, have you of you ever had to deal with everyone finding out about your blog? What did you decide to do differently after that?

Back in February, I made my post on How To Start A Blog – Tips for a Beginner and also my post on whether you should use Blogger or WordPress (and how to switch to WordPress)! Thanks to these two posts I was able to earn a decent amount in affiliate income, however that won’t be included until April’s income report (which will go live in the beginning of May). Anyways, thanks to all of you!

My sister’s blog is still going great. She’s not the greatest with a schedule but I guess that’s where I come into place. IT’s nice being able to share all of these “secrets” that I have with her so that she can make her blog more and more awesome!  Please subscribe to FITnancials if you haven’t yet.


Staff Writing

This is what I wrote last month and this section is still pretty much the same.

“I’m not doing as much staff writing as I used to. It has slowly dwindled down since the Fall (I started turning down some writing opportunities, while one was hit by the Page Rank issue recently). Thankfully this is something that has worked out for the best, as now I can focus my time on other things. Right now I only write for one personal finance website and one hotel’s travel blog.”

As you can see below, I made approximately $700 in staff writing last month. I am still slowing this down, and currently I seem to be at a good amount.


March Goals Update

  1. Cook 5 days a week. PASS. We were doing really good with this up until around one week ago. We do need to eat in more!
  2. Run 4 times a week and lose 3 pounds. PASS. I’ve been doing really good with working out more. However, I would like to start running in the morning before I go to work.
  3. Make an extra $5,500 this month. PASS. I made over $2,000 over this goal.
  4. Choose a wedding date. We need to talk to W’s family and come up with a date that will work since we will be using the family’s property. FAIL. We have talked a little more about the wedding, but don’t have a date. Oh well I’m fine with that.
  5. Sell 25 items from my closet. FAIL. I didn’t even go through my closet. I completely forgot about this goal.
  6. Come up with a name for the new business. FAIL. Haven’t done this yet! This new business is kind of at a halt since we don’t really have a lot of time due to it being the busy season.
Old picture from San Juan 2011
Old picture from San Juan 2011

April Goals (I have a lot of the same goals as last month)

  1. Cook 5 days a week. We spend way too much money on food As long as I have a interesting and tasty meal plan, I’m sure this is possible. This will probably stay on my goals list forever.
  2. Run 4 times a week and lose 3 pounds. I still want to lose some more weight, plus gain muscle as well.
  3. Make an extra $6,000 this month. I only slightly increased this from March’s goal number. I think this is a good goal for now, especially since I’m mainly working on affiliate income.
  4. Choose a wedding date. We need to talk to W’s family and come up with a date that will work since we will be using the family’s propertyThis is something that we really need to do soon, as it’s hard to do anything else without a date in mind.
  5. Sell 25 items from my closet. I have a TON of things in my closet, and our goal is to slowly declutter our house so that we will be ready to sell.
  6. Come up with a name for the new business. We have a ton of things to do for me and my friend’s new business (nothing related to blogging). First thing though, we need a name. It’s hard to build a website or buy any product without a name and a legal entity. Then we need to apply for a lot of business items as well.
  7. Go to Lowes or Home Depot and spend tons of money. Yup, this is a goal of mine. We really want to increase our landscaping and buy some plants for both inside and outside of the house.  There are also a lot of other things that we want to do such as switch all of the door knobs to a different color (right now they are a dirty gold color). Luckily, I have earned some gift cards from my credit card rewards points.


Extra Monthly Income in March

  • Staff writing – $700
  • Blog (consulting as well as advertising such as direct advertising and Adsense, but after all expenses) – $5,687
  • Blog – Affiliate Income – $1,100
  • Virtual Assistant tasks – $50
  • Selling Clothes – $0
  • Miscellaneous (not related to blogging and online income)- $0
  • Mystery Shopping – $0
  • Rent (I rent a room out to my sister) – $325

Comparisons and 2013 total

  • Total income for March: $7,862
  • Income in February: $5,983
  • Difference: +$1,872
  • Total so far in 2013: $20,368 (AWESOME!)

How did you do in March? What are your extra income goals?


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Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Author: Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Hey! I’m Michelle Schroeder-Gardner and I am the founder of Making Sense of Cents. I’m passionate about all things personal finance, side hustles, making extra money, and online businesses. I have been featured in major publications such as Forbes, CNBC, Time, and Business Insider. Learn more here.

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  1. myfijourney

    Congratulations on another great week of income!

    1. Thanks! And yes I need to buy plants but I seem to kill them all every single time.
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  2. The Norwegian Girl

    wow, nearly $8000 of extra income, now that`s amazing! Good work!

  3. Great job, Michelle. I can't wait to see your new blog design!

  4. Running 4 times a week is a great goal. I'm trying to work out 5 times a week and we just joined Planet Fitness last week so that should help. Also, as you try to limit your staff writing, I'm considering taking on more of it!
    My recent post 5 Reasons Skipping a Conference Might be a Good Choice

    1. That's good! And there's definitely nothing wrong with staff writing, I'm just finding my time to be really limited. I wish there were more hours in a day!
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  5. FrugalRules

    Awesome month Michelle! I would echo Mrs. Pop, that's going to be a nice little chunk for the tax man. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Yes it will be. BOO! ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  6. Yes, you definitely need to strive for extra income! It's nice to have and makes life so much more easier.
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  7. Yup, I am! It really stinks but taxes must be accounted for also.
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  8. Thanks Jordann! I'm glad people still enjoy reading my extra income updates ๐Ÿ™‚ And I'm sure you'll be able to reach $4K!
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  9. Thanks! And I can't tell my work about it. It would not go well…
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  10. Awesome job!! Really spectacular how you've been able to monetize and increase your income over the past year!
    My recent post Aggressively Pursuing A Dream, the Roundup #7

  11. Yeah I'll probably have to switch to that. I'm just such a number & actual dollar figure person, so I'm definitely going to miss that!
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  12. Great progress. These are fun to read. It'll be interesting to see the new theme on here!

    My post idea: I'd like to see how you treat this extra income with respect to taxes. Are you doing quarterly withholding? Do you use two separate accounts to make sure taxes get paid? That'd be interesting as your income grows from these side hustles.

    1. Thanks! And great post ideas. Your ideas are currently posts that are in the works, I've just been lazy but will get to them soon. Taxes are a drag but definitely need to be thought about and paid for.
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  13. Thanks! You can always email me too ๐Ÿ™‚
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  14. Happy_Homeowner

    Hot damn…another awesome month! Keep up the great work and thanks for linking to me! ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Sharon

    Great job on the extra income! I'm still trying to figure out your affiliate income since there are no ads on your blog? How does this work? And adsense?

    I would LOVE to earn that in a year to help pay for college education, but I have no.idea.how. Any suggestions?

    1. Thanks Sharon! I have affiliate links in two of my blog posts (the How To Start a Blog, and switching to WordPress posts). Several people have clicked on my links and started blogs, which has been super nice! And yes I earn some from adsense as well.
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  16. therandompath

    Congrats on the extra income Michelle! Keep up the good work ๐Ÿ™‚
    My recent post Link Love: Happy Easter Edition!

  17. Yeah this is something that I really need to start thinking about more!
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  18. Tabitha

    This is always so inspiring. And I want to have my blog be as successful as yours!

    1. Thanks Tabitha! ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  19. Mark

    Tracking toward $8k/mo in side hustle money is no joke. Any goals/plans for quitting the day job?

    1. Thanks Mark! And no plans right now to quit my day job ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  20. debtperception

    I really need to look more into making money off my blog…over $5000 from your blog alone! That's great!

  21. xlovehappyx

    your extra income is so awesome! i'm loving your blog ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Newlyweds ona budget

    You are such an inspiration! I don't understand all the party poopers who are trying to remind you about taxes. Of course you know you'll have to pay taxes, you write about personal finance, duh! People just trying to rain on your parade ๐Ÿ˜›
    Since I never see ads on your site, where do you find most of your advertisers? Or do most of them find you? And how do you keep them so well-hidden??

    1. Haha it's really no big deal but I do hope people know that I am thinking about taxes. Of course I am paying them people! Next year will be a disaster when I have to pay them though, I need to get more organized with all of my paperwork and everything. Most of the advertisers find me. If you're interested in any secrets, feel free to email me. I have plenty of them ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  23. Nick @ AYoungPro.com

    Awesome job Michelle, you are rocking it! I made $15 in adsense income over the weekend, which is the first money I have made on my blog. I'm pretty happy with that. ๐Ÿ™‚ Keep up the good work, you are inspiring!
    My recent post Blog Roundup #7

    1. That's awesome! I haven't been doing the greatest with adsense, but my friend Lance over at Money Life and More has been helping me out with tips on adsense thankfully! ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  24. Wow, these are fantastic results! Amazingly engaged commenters too! I'm looking forward to spending some time here!
    My recent post The LTNE Report — March 2013 (Now With More Passive Income!)

  25. Congratulations on another fabulous month, Michelle! I am always impressed by how much you earn on the side. I know you're working your butt off to earn it. Looking forward to seeing the blog redesign.
    My recent post Celebrating National Financial Literacy Awareness Month

    1. Thanks! And yes I'm definitely working my butt off ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  26. Luis

    Nice income ๐Ÿ˜‰ keep work you will make more and more.

    This income are only from this website?

    1. My extra income is from multiple areas, all listed above ๐Ÿ™‚
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  27. Aurora

    Awsome job on the side income! very impressive! I really need to get my butt in gear with that!

  28. Family Fandango

    Wow, that's great! I'm very impressed by your totals. Do you have a guesstimate on how many hours you work per week on your "extra income" projects?
    My recent post Toad and Toad, sitting in a tank, k-i-s-s-i-n-g

  29. Hmmm I'm really not sure. I work on my side hustles before and after work, during my lunch breaks and on the weekends. I'm always multi-tasking though (such as with making dinner or stopping to do a quick run) so it would be hard for me to estimate. Any free time that I have though, I am almost ALWAYS busy ๐Ÿ™‚
    My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  30. @LivingDFRocks

    Michelle, you are doing an incredible job of balancing your main career and working at additional income sources!

  31. That's awesome Michelle. I like hearing about the great success you are having with your earnings. I've been focusing on my affiliate earnings as of late and I managed to earn a $120 from one affiliate product this month and a total of $535 altogether.
    My recent post 22 DIY Ways To Help Prevent Data Theft

    1. That's awesome! You are definitely doing well.
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  32. Nice job! I need to start writing down my goals for each month… I read some where that you are more likely to complete goals when you write them down. I will follow your example.

    1. And this is exactly why I love having a blog. I feel like I can account for things much more easily.
      My recent post $7,862 in March Extra Income and Goals

  33. Canadianbudgetbinder

    Well done Michelle, keep up the good work and Im sure you will conquer all of your goals.
    My recent post March 2013 CBB Budget Update #3- A Quiet Month With The Budget

  34. Lena

    Nice job on your goals and extra income! You are totally rocking it! But I still can't wait to hear when the big day is going to be ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Haha yes I need to start planning that!

  35. Tie the Money Knot

    If a person can live off regular income, and simply save (or eliminate debt) with that type of extra income, great things are in store. Keep up the great work! This is inspirational to others, as I'm sure you've heard hundreds of times by now..

    1. Thanks! Haha I'm glad people think of me as an inspiration. ๐Ÿ™‚

  36. Michelle, you are such a great inspiration to us all! Thanks for sharing your goals and the outcome. I think it's perfectly fine to have it all in one post. All great and helpful info here!

  37. Awesome job, but I expect nothing less from you ๐Ÿ˜‰ Way to go on increasing the affiliate income, I am sure that will continue to increase with time. I did good with my March goals, just trying to gradually increase my extra income.
    My recent post March Goal Review and April’s Goals

    1. Thanks Alexa ๐Ÿ™‚

  38. Thanks! I can't wait to see how it looks.

  39. really amazing! my blog is slowly growing and i am hoping to have it start making some money to supplement my income as well. love reading your blog for tips!
    My recent post legally blogging {crystal – 29 rue house}

    1. Thanks! Glad you enjoy the tips that I'm giving ๐Ÿ™‚

  40. Yay, congratulations!!! March was good to us too. I am posting my income updates in my Friday newsletters now instead of my actual site because of trolls. I thought about changing the numbers to percentages or something, but I like real numbers. So everyone we know can see everything I write, but we figure I have a big mouth anyway, hahaha.
    My recent post How To Be More Open Minded

    1. I'm thinking I might have to eventually switch to that too. I'm still thinking about it though!

  41. Michelle you're kicking butt and taking no prisoners! Love these posts.

  42. Michelle

    Daaammnnn gurl. You're rockin' it! You need to teach me the ways because somehow my $200 made from my blog last month doesn't seem to be cutting it, haha

  43. Miss Angie

    Great goals, and you did so well in March! You are on top of this money stuff, I need to stop by more and soak in some of your good habits.

  44. This is absolutely amazing, you're on fire! Congratulations! What I love about your site is that it isn't overwhelming with ads all over the place. You obviously have an excellent strategy.

    I've also been investing a lot of time on my career counselling side hustle this month and got excited about $1100… nothing compared to your progress ๐Ÿ™‚ You are an inspiration. Can't wait to read your April update.
    My recent post Emotional Affairs – Are They Worse Than Physical Affairs?

  45. Renee

    Hi Michelle! I’ve just discovered your blog through Abby at Just a Girl and Her Blog (she pinned you on Pinterest). My question is to make money through Affiliate income, when someone clicks on your link do they then have to purchase the item or sign up for something or do you make money just for having them click on the links?

    Thanks so much for your awesome advice!!

    1. Hi Renee!

      I’m so glad that you found my blog ๐Ÿ™‚ With affiliate links, yes they do have to purchase an item in order for me to make anything.

      1. Renee

        Thanks Michelle! I’m very interested in possibly starting up my own blog and I’d love to be able to see that kind of income generate from it!

  46. Cen

    Hi ,

    My question may sound a bit dumb but i am a beginner. I dont understand why do you use Sumo for email capture , when you have convertkit already? What purpose are you using both for?
    Will be really grateful if you can brief me about the different autoresponders or email marketing tools you are using and for what purpose. Thank you.