Bitcoin – The crash. Holding Tight but not feeling good

“Quick, it’s on sale” he says…

It is 2022, inflation is rampant, I’ve downgraded everything in our cupboard and the kitchen is now a sea of yellow (Asda Smart Price are mid rebrand to Essentials) and I feel like every other day I’m getting a letter from the bank advising that my mortgage payment is to go up.

About 6 weeks ago I came to terms with £3000 savings now being worth around £1500, the promised bull run to $100k + never happened and Bitcoin dropped to around $30k. It was impressive timing for me, given how skint we are, what was perhaps more impressive was Mr Calamity’s insistence that it was a sale, huge opportunity and we should buy more immediately (with what money I can only imagine – probably would have sold the house if I let him).

But today… shockingly. It has dropped even more. I have to say, even I’m a bit tempted to put my pennies together right now. Main thing stopping me is the fact that right now, even paying for a school trip is requiring careful consideration.

So why is this happened?

Well I’m no expert, but my limited research seems to suggest that increasing inflation, raising interest rates and fears of recession are tending to put the fear into people. They are then getting rid of risky investments (crypto) in order to protect themselves. The more who do it the more then see it happening and do it.

Are we selling?

No, Mr Calamity wouldn’t allow it, I already sold all altcoins a few months ago to create a new Match Betting bank for myself for Cheltenham which basically used any favours I have.

No Spend Diary 1st-7th Jan

Overall, a pretty cheap week. Definitely not no spend, but after the frenzy that was Christmas it was much calmer.

New Years Day was super cheap, we went to the beach and ate some cake. I confess I bought some mash potato, but it was only £1.

Sunday 2nd we went to the Deer Centre, really fun day out. Cost £43 for 3 adults and 2 children, unfortunately we didn’t remember a picnic so paid more on the food but my mum got that! On the way home we stopped in M&S for takeaway sandwiches, my friend who works there found me an amazing Percy Pig Musical Tin that was down for reduction, so I got that for £1 and some Harry Potter chocolate frogs for 16p each.

Rest of week was pretty well behaved though. Had to pick up rolls from Co Op (£1.44) and salad (£1) but otherwise I stuck with what we had in.

My main aim of the week was to speak to my local car garage about selling our old car (I can’t drive yet and Mr Calamity is currently too unwell too) it has been sitting on the drive for two years now. I need it gone!! When I went through to see him he was out so will try again soon as I’d like the money.

Weeks Total: £58.90

Side Hustle #3 KDP (Print on Demand)

If it is passive you are after, this one is golden. Or it least it will be when someone buys my damn books.

Next time you are on Amazon, take a look at the books information closely. If it says ‘Independently Published’ then it will be a KDP book, usually created by a side hustler like you or me.

To get started, I first recommend some YouTube study time. I started by watching the Home Boss, and joined her Facebook group too, the information you gather is super important, those videos will teach you everything from how many pages is optimal to the best design programmes.

Once you have read enough to get a feel for it. Have a little think for inspiration for your first book. Start with low or no content, to get your head around the process.

Using a program like Canva (you only need the free version) just go crazy and design the journal or planner of your dreams!

Next you need to sort your categories/key words. The keywords will be what makes or breaks you. You will have learnt about these from the Youtube videos.

When you have nailed your design, upload to KDP (you can just use your standard Amazon account) and wait a few days for approval.

Once that shiny email reaches your inbox to confirm its published, take a look on Amazon and bingo! You are now a published author. Prepare to be obsessed now for months clicking back & forward waiting for those sales to come rolling in.

I made approx £50 per month until Dec selling student planners, after that it dropped down to about £10. But I’m hoping next August it should go up again.

The books you create the more you can make.

Difficulty: 7/10 I found the initial learning curve pretty tough

Profit: £50 per month for me, but I haven’t made many books (yet)

Tried & Tested: Yes by me, I also got my mum on board who designed a Christmas Planner which sold 8 copies in December (getting her £16 profit)

My Side Hustle Earnings – 2021

So I wanted to do a quick 2021 recap, just to cover the good, bad & ugly of my side hustles!

Advert Rating – By far my winner of the year. £10 per day, 5 days per week. I could have done 7 days if I wanted. That is c£2,600 in one year!

The advert rating is amazing, it takes around an hour to do 30 adverts and earn your £10. My only downside to this one is that it is so easy you get a bit hooked on it, and there are points where I ‘only’ advert rate, and skip other things that could grow to a larger passive income. See my Advert rating blog for more details.

KDP – This is one I haven’t written about yet. Basically it is Kindle on Demand Publishing. You create a book (low or medium content) and publish it on Amazon.

So I started in August, made around £50 per month on about 10 books. Except it was really only 2 books selling. Both were student planners.

Blogging – I made a big fat ZERO. But I only managed 10 posts and haven’t really looked at my SEO yet. So this one is in progress.

Affiliate Marketing – Er zero. Again. I didn’t even scratch the surface

Match Betting – I used to clean up with this (1k+ per month) until I spent the bank and life got hard. I received a few casino offers in the post this year and did those making on average £10 a time. So a total of about £30.

Trading – Another one that I plan to cover soon. I opened a Kucoin account and tried to do some crypto trading (buy low, sell high, repeat) it didn’t go terribly. I started with £150, played around till I got to £247 then literally overnight, everything dropped. I had stop limits in place so I went down to £198 with everything sold. It was a bit scary… I then bought Bitcoin & some altcoins in the dip. Bitcoin since then dropped further but everything else seems to be okay and I’ve been stable at about £225 for a few weeks now. So current total of £75ish

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

My Money Resolutions for 2022

I always feel a little sad at this time of year. Optimistic but with a definite undertone of regret for all the things I resolved to do last year but didn’t.

But, 2022. It is going to be my year.

Firstly, I am going to learn more about finances. Not just where to buy the cheapest washing powder, but other things like inflation, interest rates, pensions and why I should care about them.

Next, I’m going to spend quite a bit less. Nothing crazy, but I’m going to be careful. I would like to bulk buy a bit more (if I know I will use) and maybe do some growing, salad & fruit in particular we go through a lot of. I also want chickens, but Mr Calamity put his foot down.

With all my savings and new founded financial knowledge I plan to invest. I haven’t decided in what yet, that will come. But I want to grow my money.

Lastly, I am going to continue to side hustle!! I am going to challenge myself to 300 blog posts, 300 short videos (Tiktok or I might move to Youtube) and 300 Facebook/Insta posts.

So watch this space!!

Photo by Olya Kobruseva on Pexels.com

Investing – Our dip into Crypto

Every few months or a year Mr Calamity comes at me going on about Bitcoin. How its the place to be, making millionaires left, right & centre and if only we saved/invested rather than eating quite so many takeaways.

So I had been saving for a while now, just keeping what I could in a different bank account, transferring a couple of times per month what I thought I could get away with (then taking it back if needed!), but I decided to throw caution to the wind and agree to try this out.

We agreed £400 as an initial investment and opted for Coinbase as that looked like a fairly simple set up.

It took around 30 minutes to set up the account, the most tricky part was linking the bank account. Also if you use the app you need to switch to web browser for certain parts or they don’t work.

We decided to split the £400 between Bitcoin and Etherium. I actually wanted some VeChain (heard about it on Mumsnet !!) but I wasn’t able to buy that on Coinbase.

The site took a cut and it worked out around £196 of each.

What I didn’t know at the time was that we actually jumped in on Bitcoins highest high price of all time (do I sound bitter!?)

Almost immediately Bitcoin started to drop. At first we were checking every few hours but it got too painful. After a few days though Ethereum started to really go crazy and was making up for the loss.

2 weeks in and our £400 was worth £724. Which was an amazing return, I was delighted with how it was doing. So delighted in fact that I let Mr Calamity pop a bit more in (this time using Binance as had more options to buy smaller coins).

So the high was brilliant, but it unfortunately didn’t last. Apparently Elon Musk made a tweet about something. Then China said something else and I don’t even know what happened after that but our £400 is now £354. From £400 its not a massively loss but it is really hard not to dwell on the £724 that it was.

We haven’t sold. Mr Calamity tells me this we are in for the long haul and that it will all turn around. I will update each month on how our investment is doing anyways, but for May we are currently at a £46 loss.

No Spend Diary – 11th-18th May

Can’t stop, Won’t Stop. I REALLY NEED TO STOP

It has all gone wrong, I don’t even know how it went so wrong when I thought I was doing so well.

I have literally bought every cake I can find, then I did my weekly shop at Iceland to save money and still spend £80. How is that even possible?

It is the smallest ones birthday, so I spend £45 on his presents plus my mum bought his cycle helmet but isn’t giving me the money until she sees me so it actually came to £64. I had a few World of Warcraft subscriptions come out this week at £9.99 each (one mine, one Mr Calamity’s and one spare… don’t ask!) as we play classic a bit and are planning to play TBC.

Then Mr Calamity had ‘borrowed’ £200 earlier in the month, to invest on Crypto but that has gone pear-shaped, so I couldn’t get that back, I’m raging !

But, on a more positive note. The cake was truly delicious.

My Spend: £95.95

Cake – £10 from new coffee shop near me. Was a lot of cake

Birthday Presents (& helmet) from Argos. £63.95

Birthday Balloon to collect Monday. £5

Pre-booked a play centre for next week both children. £17

I don’t think next week will be that much better, but I’m going to try and get it under the £50 mark. How are you getting on?

No Spend Diary – 3rd-10th May

Did I mention I like to spend? Well this week I have blown it out of the water and barely bought a thing.

  • Mystery Shopping (see my Side Hustle #2 blog) took a bunch of my money, which I won’t get reimbursed until next Monday 17th! So that helps a lot since you can’t spend what you don’t have.
  • I had a small amount of money remaining put aside for moving all our bedrooms around next week (we only have 2 bedrooms, but we are going to split the bigger one into 2 so each child has a room) but Mr Calamity asked to take it to put in crypto until next week since we don’t need it until then. That stopped any risk of me spending it (though I do have the risk that he is going to put it all on a dodgy coin) I will write a few posts at some point about the cryptocurrency stuff as it is quite interesting.
  • The butchers is closed this week! So basically living out of the freezer.

In other news this weekend, I sorted my son a balance bike from Facebook marketplace. It was a good quality one and was free! It has a flat tyre but that is easy enough to fix. I am delighted, going to give it a little clean & sort out ready for his birthday in a couple of weeks.

Not spending is going to keep getting harder and harder as more things open. Treating the children to little lunches out (even cheap ones at our community centre) and things like swimming all add up, but I really don’t want the kids to miss out.

Total Spend: £62.60

£3 school trip money (they are literally going to a park 20 mins walk away) £3 – 2 x water bottles (the little one needed a bottle for his sports classes he just started & I got a spare) then £30 rubbish pick up from council (as we are moving things around), £15 on trainers and £4 magazine for the little one, then £7.60 on bus fare to go and collect the free bike.

Wow that is actually a lot when it is written down in that way and I thought I had such a good week.

Side Hustle #2 Mystery Shopping

Oh this is the best work if you can get it.

For starters, it is now available ONLINE. No more, popping round the shops incognito. Now you can do it from the comfort of your sofa in the relative warmth of your living room.

The payment for this isn’t great as a time to money ratio, however you do get to keep the things you buy, you can either return for a refund, sell yourself or give away. So it has major monthly potential.

Two major companies for this one, Appen and Lionbridge. The mystery shopping assignments are sought after but once your foot is in the door you should get it monthly for the campaign duration (or until your 12 months is up)

I’ve been doing this for a few months now, takes 1 or 2 evenings per month. Basically you get shown some adverts, you click through to the website, purchase item, fill in a survey then about a week later you are reimbursed with a small payment on top.

So the best thing we have had so far has been the Donut Delivery for sure. It was amazing, the donuts were that special kind of heavy that you can hardly eat a whole one at once and you end up skipping dinner to finish it.

Other favourites have been

  • Pyjamas
  • Blade & Rose socks for the smallest
  • Child’s Farm toiletries set
  • Bonsai Gift Set

Not everything turned out so great though

  • An actual Grinch to go in my garden. A Grinch?
  • Vikings necklace that took 10 weeks to arrive

But every month when I get the email, I look forward to going through and seeing what I get. I have a slight tendency towards a shopping addiction too, so this helps me get it out of my system. it also takes a wad of money out of bank for about 10-12 days dropping it back in towards the end of the month, so think it helps me save a bit too.

I also have now a huge stock of presents for every occasion (I feel bad returning the items, its mostly small companies).

Difficulty: 5/10 – Fairy easy but make sure you organise yourself properly

Profit: £20 per month (Approx 4 hours work) but you get a lot of items which you can return/sell for further profit if inclined

Tried & Tested: Yes, another favourite of mine. I do this monthly.

No Spend Diary – 27th -3rd May

I had to switch to weekly as I was spending so much that it was just taking all my time up tracking it.

I’m starting to think I might be some kind of compulsive spender. Though that does sound a bit harsh. This week things started to open up again after lockdown here so I had a few spends that aren’t going to happen all the time.

2 sports classes per week for the littlest one. Thankfully he starts nursery in August so this is the only term I need to pay for the weekday one. So that was £95, then he needed new shoes which was another £15…

Then I accidently bought too much pizza, which came to £25. But that was a big treat for us since it is a pizza van so doesn’t come often, otherwise a new coffee shop opened by the park. Now I hate the park. It is busy and noisy, my kids are not well behaved at all, the big one is thankfully scared of everything, but the soon to be 3 year old is a nightmare and constantly has to propel himself all over the place and off everything tall. So I figure a treat for me is okay in this circumstance. A nice latte (£2.50) for me to sip at the park, and then a cake (£4) for each kid to bribe them at home time.

I then had my post lockdown hair cut. Which involved highlights, cut and even opalex. My hairdresser didn’t give me a choice about Opalex so I’m assuming I didn’t have to pay more for it. It was in honesty still an expensive luxury though at £110.

Otherwise I have actually been pretty good for once. I managed to do a good shopping order so we didn’t need any top ups, which was fab since it is almost impossible to just get a couple of bits from co op.

I’m currently torn about Body Shop at Home though, I think I mentioned before that I did try it and it wasn’t great for me (I will write a post just about that soon!) but they sent me a decent reactivation offer and I have run out of the things I like, so I’m tempted to give it another shot. Even if just to stock up my bathroom. BUT… I am supposed to be not spending.

Argh.

So this weeks no spend total: £251

It was the week after payday, so the rest of month will be pretty skint.