Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Where are you and where are you going?
classical_Liberal
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:05 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by classical_Liberal »

@JenAR
With a complicated pregnancy/delivery, I think there would be medicaid availability at your income level. This is preferable to a hospital than nonpayment, so they'd likely push you pretty hard to take any available societal help. On a positive note, it's a safety net for you and would be used as it was intended.

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

I've been doing a lot of seed collecting in the last couple days--lupine, pennycress, black medic, daisy, chokecherry, chive, and I have some perennial grain, vetch, iris, and California poppy I'm eyeing up . . . such a fun time of year. I feel very Scrooge McDuck-ish about my seed stash. I've also been harvesting the remnants of the lemon balm, mint, and yarrow to dry before they're beyond saving.

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

Spent some time this week felling, limbing, and peeling trees for the greenhouse we're building. Learning how to build a home or other structure from scratch, using mostly raw materials I can gather myself, has greatly increased my sense of self-sufficiency since coming here. The new cob floors are ready to be oiled--will be doing the first coat today.

Also did more canning. Our canned peaches and jam stash is looking pretty good, although not yet enough to get us through to next year.

Decided against ordering the slackline with my Amazon points--instead I ordered beekeeping gloves, muslin cloths (for pressing tinctures, among other things), and more seeds: asparagus, echinacea, calendula, marshmallow, and crimson clover.

Have been working my way through an herbal medicine curriculum in my spare time.

No-spend August still on track.

basuragomi
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2019 3:13 pm

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by basuragomi »

Would you ever consider getting into ceramics as a floor covering instead of cob? Can still be produced with on-site materials, if you have the necessary mineral deposits at hand. I suppose the issue would be getting a strong enough support structure beneath it to prevent cracking, but for the longevity of the product, the labour requirements seem not much more than the herculean amounts required to do cob.

Another natural alternative would be rush flooring, but that might not be the best choice if rodents are already present.

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

I don't know enough about ceramics to say, but I would certainly be interested in looking into it. The cob actually doesn't feel all that Herculean to me; it's pretty pleasant work and done in stages. But I would certainly be put off by building, say, an entire house out of structural cob. That's a lot of work. I like the idea of being able to make small batches of ceramic tile and stockpile them for later flooring, rather than needing to work up large batches of cob and use them before they dry or the fibers begin to decompose.

I think rush flooring is probably out, just due to the "what's living in there?" factor and the maintenance. I like the cob floors because I can sweep and mop them like in a normal house and not have a bunch of weird dust or pest havens, and lay down nice rugs in winter without destroying the rugs.

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

A friend of ours (a chef) brought some bundles of lavender to my partner (an excellent cook) a couple weeks ago, but my partner doesn't actually like the taste of lavender much, so he gave it to me. I got it down from the drying racks today and infused it in honey. Should be ready in a few weeks. I enjoy lavender honey in chamomile or other calming teas in the evening, and as a remedy for minor wounds (both the lavender and honey promote wound healing). Mmmm. The whole kitchen smells like lavender now.

Speaking of herbal medicine stuff, I have some copies of Sergei Boutenko's "Common Weeds and Wild Edibles of the World" movie from our recent Kickstarter. I haven't watched it yet, but hopefully will be able to soon. Would anyone be interested in a copy? They're free, but I think you have to create an account at permies.com to stream them. I also have rocket mass heater documentaries and other permaculture-y goodies, so if you're interested in a particular topic, I could see if I have a gift code available.

Alphaville
Posts: 1298
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2019 10:50 am
Location: Quarantined

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by Alphaville »

try a bit of lavender in rice pudding if you’re curious. good stuff. not too much, or it will taste like deodorant :lol:

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

Ooooh, lavender rice pudding sounds amazing!

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

@Alphaville

I made vegan lavender rice pudding for dinner to follow my red lentil dal, and it was a hit. Thanks!

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Income

Post by JenAR »

$5.50 kickback from recent kickstarter

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

I am really enjoying the herbal medicine-making course I am taking. I would very much like to take a longer course, but the one I am interested in (directed toward clinicians, most people take about 2 years to complete it) is $3,000. Ouch. It would get me much of the way to meeting the educational requirements of the American Herbalist Guild registered herbalist certification, which would be of benefit if I wanted to practice/teach herbal medicine seriously, which might be a future income stream. But mostly I am interested in practicing on a personal/community level, and out of simple intrinsic interest in the material.

A metric I like to use for large purchases is: If I can make enough money from the hobby/interest to pay for further developing the hobby/interest, I can make the purchase.

So in this case, I would need to make $3,000 or create an income stream of $250 a month from herb-based stuff in order to allow myself to purchase the course. That's a lot of money relative to my current income. On the bright side, if I did create an income stream of $250 a month, that would be ~5 times my current monthly expenses and almost double my projected monthly expenses after "graduating" to my own plot, so I'd be pretty set financially. If it were a residual income stream, it would also count toward my $500/month passive/residual income goal before having children.

Some ideas for how to make money from herb stuff:

- Collect/grow seeds and sell them (probably online)
- Sell dried herbs/blends/teas (probably online)
- Sell themed herbal sachets/potpourris/massage oils/aromatherapy type things (themes like "relax" "energy" "focus" "love" "sex" "sleep" "dream" "harmony" "meditate" or whatever with herbs that support those activities)
- Sell herbal/floral bouquets/wreaths/decorations (if I can figure out how to make them attractive and ship them without crumbling--or might have to sell in person)
- Sell herbal preparations (tinctures, glycerites, salves, massage oils, honeys, syrups, etc) (probably has legal/regulatory aspects I need to research--so may some other items)
- Sell herb starts for transplant (probably at farmer's market--ugh)
- Start YouTube channel about herbs, herbal preparations, etc (could be partially passive/residual once established)
- Start a blog doing the same thing (easier for me, probably less lucrative than YouTube)
- Host a local course on making basic herbal preparations
- Film a course on making basic herbal preparations and offer it somewhere/somehow online (residual, maybe with ongoing active components like Facebook group/Q&A etc)
- Host a local plant walk about wild herbs/edibles (my local knowledge is probably still too marginal for this, currently)
- Create some kind of Amazon affiliate-esque store of herbal supplies for sale (probably has to be an addendum to one of the other options, or no one will ever visit it) (could also list affiliate links in YouTube video comments if I end up doing the YouTube thing)
- Somehow get paid to write articles/blog posts for other publications about herb stuff
- Get paid by a seed company to grow out seeds for them
- Write a short ebook (or series of themed ebooks) about herb stuff
- Herbal CSA or herbal adjunct to someone else's CSA
- Get paid as a speaker/instructor at someone else’s event/course
- Build/plant herb gardens/herb spirals for people locally
- Sell window box herb kits or something like that
- Sell botanical illustrations and/or prints of botanical illustrations of herbs (I am a very amateur watercolorist--but could possibly develop that skill to a level where I could sell a few watercolors) (could sell the drawings individually or hire out to illustrate someone's book/website/logo/etc)

I may think of some more options once I've thought about it for a day or two.

I would like to avoid lots of business license/regulatory/tax stuff, which makes me want to cry, but not sure how feasible that is.
Last edited by JenAR on Wed Aug 19, 2020 10:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

mooretrees
Posts: 326
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by mooretrees »

That is a HUGE list of making money from herb stuff. Pretty cool. I've just started making my own herbal oil and it's so exciting. What course are you taking now? Is it through the American Herbalist Guild? Do you have any starter books you recommend? I've looked around but hesitated to buy anything as I'm so new to this area. I'm primarily hoping to try and make some salves with the herbs I've got started in oil now: lavender, sage, oregano and calendula.

We've been vendors at a farmers market for a few years, I love it. You don't seem too interested in that though, why? We don't make a lot of money doing it, but it's been an excellent jumping off point for selling in other situations (farm stands, local bakeries, etc) and getting our 'brand' recognized. I can see a situation where we'll be making enough money from doing wholesale sales to forgo doing the market.

One forum member posted his low key herb selling set up this year from a cart he built and parked in his driveway. Maybe that's more your speed if you have the right location? viewtopic.php?f=6&t=11153&hilit=plant+sales

If you do start having products to sell, easy places to start (in non-pandemic times) are craft fairs and holiday bazaars. People come looking for unique gifts in those situations.

ertyu
Posts: 1182
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by ertyu »

Another herb idea: contact other small businesses, e.g. handrafted soap makers (brainstorm more types of business who might be amenable. local artisanal coffee shops? your imagination seems to be better than mine here) and see if you can supply their business with herbs

UrbanHomesteader
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:02 pm

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by UrbanHomesteader »

You mentioned you don’t currently have health insurance. Would you qualify for Medicaid in your state based on income?

Also, with regard to the value of your labor in the community vs dollars, I think that is a fascinating discussion. There is something about activities that feel more like natural parts of living vs showing up at a Job to trade time for money. It sounds like your labor with the community is slanted toward the vibrant living side rather than the job side.

For myself, I am working a Job for a few more years to build my basic ERE stash. The hope is to do more vibrant living indefinitely. So, ERE will probably involve a lot of work, but not just trading time for money, but hopefully more skill building and working with others in a positive setting. Sometimes I think I could cut out the Job phase and just move to the vibrant living phase, but I am drawn to the security of the stash and the allure of FU money.

RoamingFrancis
Posts: 250
Joined: Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:43 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by RoamingFrancis »

Hey, just read through your whole journal. Really enjoyed it, it seems like you're basically a future version of me. I love your conceptualization of psycho-emotional capital!

ffj
Posts: 2229
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by ffj »

Not all herbs, but easy nonetheless as long as you plan far enough in advance. I'll be making the vanilla extract for sure at some point.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x24iQ2B7dkE

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by JenAR »

Got the Bodie book, but haven't had time to dig in yet.

Still on track for no-spend August.

Took a trip to Glacier NP with friends this last weekend--luckily her park pass covered the whole vehicle and everyone in it. Beautiful park, enjoyed hiking, wish I made more time to hike and swim more often.

classical_Liberal
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:05 am

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by classical_Liberal »

JenAR wrote:
Tue Aug 25, 2020 1:01 pm
Still on track for no-spend August.
Six more days for absolute zero spend! Then the JenAR fame will be vast and varied.

JenAR
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:46 am

Income

Post by JenAR »

$15.49 mystery check from US Treasury. Probably the tax refund they capriciously adjusted for no stated reason and have now unadjusted.

ZAFCorrection
Posts: 406
Joined: Mon Aug 14, 2017 3:49 pm

Re: Renewed motivation to push for financial independence

Post by ZAFCorrection »

It's an interest check related to keeping tax refunds longer this year. That is approximately correct, anyway. I read some article about it a few days ago and also got a random bit of money.

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