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How I Can Afford to Be a Stay-at-Home Single Mother

Some know how Decentral Mamas came to be, while for others, this will be the first time “hearing” about it. I have been self-employed for years, most of which required me to work outside of the home, and when my son was born, I decided I wanted to be able to stay home and raise him (and his future sibling). But as a single mom, I knew that meant I could not rely on anyone else to pay the bills, that I would have to bring in the income myself. I had been trading stocks for a little while and decided to try my hand at trading crypto. This took many hours of studying all that I could to not only be able to do it, but do it well. I did successfully manage to bring in an income from trading, which allowed me to stay home with him as planned. This is when I started getting DMs from contacts reaching out and asking how their sister/sister-in-law/friend could do what I do and maybe get more time with her kids too. At that same time, my daughter was a newborn and I found keeping up with both kids and trading consistently was proving to be too much.

I shifted to NFTs…. Yes I see the irony there. Nevertheless, this is how Free Mamas, now Decentral Mamas, was born.

Since the moment that I decided to embark on this journey, many have asked me how I make my money and how I can afford to stay home with my children while being a single mother. And though I have never shied away from answering the questions, I have never put it all in one place and broken it down for anyone, and it was recently suggested by a new but dear friend who goes by the username of Webb3fitty that I do so.

So here we go…

I think it’s important to explain the income/revenue situation first. This will help set the stage for how it all works together, but also further backs up my stance of “multiple streams of revenue are needed” which is something I tell all of the women that come to me to learn. So let’s talk about the importance of multiple streams of income and then I’ll talk about mine.

Having multiple streams of revenue is becoming increasingly important in today's economy. Inflation is on the rise and things are just awfully expensive, especially when you have kids. The old ways of having a single job or business that provides all of your income is no longer as secure as it once was, and often not even an option for single mothers. In today's crazy world, having multiple streams of revenue can certainly provide a little stability that is difficult to achieve with that single income source.

This should go without saying, but having multiple streams of revenue can provide a safety net if one stream of income dries up. Obviously this could happen for a variety of reasons, such as a job loss, a business failure, or a shift in the market, illness that makes certain tasks impossible..etc. Therefore, if you have multiple streams of revenue, you have a better chance of weathering these types of storms and at least buying time until you can replace the one that is no longer.

In addition to providing the obvious safety net, multiple streams of revenue can also provide opportunities for growth. This is my personal favorite. For example, if you have a successful business, you could use the profits to invest in other ventures or maybe even to start a new business. This can help you diversify your income, which is always a good thing.

Another benefit of having multiple streams of revenue is that it can provide a greater sense of freedom and flexibility. When you rely on a single income source, you may feel trapped or limited in your options. However, with multiple streams of revenue, you can have more control over your financial situation and more options for how you want to spend your time.

Finally, having multiple streams of income can also help you achieve your long-term financial goals. Whether you want to save for retirement, start a college fund for the kids, pay off debt, or invest in a new hobby or business venture, having multiple streams of income can provide the financial resources you need to achieve your goals.

So what does this all translate into when it comes to my personal situation. Well it’s simple, I have as you probably guessed – multiple streams of revenue.

  1. I still trade part-time (crypto & NFTs)

  2. I do part-time dev work for other projects (web3)

  3. I do commission artwork/graphics (web3)

  4. I offer my Sex and Relationship coaching services part-time (web2/web3)

  5. I do get child tax from the Canadian Government

  6. I do receive child support

For some of those, I receive payment in fiat (Canadian Dollar), some in crypto and some in NFTs. All of them help me ensure all bills are paid and my kids’ needs are met, while I get to stay home with them every day. As you can see, working in web3 has played a large role in my ability to bring in multiple streams of income, making it so I can continue to stay home with my children, because fact is, child tax and child support DO NOT cover the monthly expenses.

Now here’s what I view to be the biggest part of it. Having multiple streams of revenue is all good and well, but if you don’t have a budget that you work with, you may end up spending in places you really don’t need to be, thus requiring you to bring in more money (which translates into more work and less time with the kids) to cover things.

So bare with me as I try to break down why budgeting matters, some tips and tricks, all while including exactly what I do. Budgeting plays a huge role into how I make all of this work, so as far I am concerned, this is arguably the most important piece to it all.

Living on a budget is a smart financial strategy that can help you achieve your financial goals, avoid debt and spend more time with the kids, while needing less money to do so. As most of us know, a budget is simply a plan that outlines your income, expenses, and savings goals. By creating a budget and sticking to it, you can make sure that you are spending your money wisely, spending more time with the kids and saving for the future all at the same time.

Here are some tips for living on a budget, mixed in with what I do:

Track your expenses: The first step in creating a budget is to track your expenses. Keep a record of all your expenses for a month and categorize them into different categories such as housing, transportation, food, utilities, entertainment, and so on. This will give you a clear picture of where your money is going and where you can cut back.

In my case, I use Quickbooks to organize all my finances as I do operate as a sole proprietor. I set time aside each month to input all of the expenses needed into the software. It will then break down where the money is being spent. There are many budgeting apps out there that will do this for you, even if you don’t need business software.

Set financial goals: Once you have tracked your expenses, set some financial goals. These could be short-term goals such as paying off credit card debt or long-term goals such as saving for a down payment on a house. The one I hope to see everyone strive for is the goal of bringing in enough income to have some freedom. This amount will vary for everyone. Having those clear financial goals laid out in front of you will help you stay motivated and focused on your budget.

Create that budget: Based on your income and expenses, create a budget that allows you to meet those financial goals. Start by allocating your income to your fixed expenses such as rent/mortgage, utilities, and transportation. Then allocate funds to your variable expenses such as groceries, entertainment, and clothing. Finally, allocate funds to your savings goals.

I’ll give an example of how I handle this. I recently got a payment. The very first thing I did with it was allocate 40% to paying the bills that needed to be paid, and paid them immediately. I do not leave anything left over, I’ll overpay a bill if need be, rather than leave it in the account and risk spending it. Overpaying the bill gets me a credit the next month, acting as a sort of savings. Then I immediately filled the car with a full tank of gas, which typically lasts me about 2 weeks and used 25% to purchase a bunch of groceries. From there, and only AFTER everything mentioned has been done, the rest got divided into investments and entertainment.

Cut back on expenses: To live on a budget, especially if you’re looking to be able to have more freedom and stay home with your children, you may need to cut back on some of those expenses. Look for areas where you can reduce your spending without sacrificing your quality of life. Here’s some tips and some examples from what I do.

1. Reduce unnecessary expenses: Take a hard look at your expenses and eliminate those that are not necessary. For example, you could cancel subscriptions or memberships that you don't use or need.

I frequently cancel all subscriptions. I reactivate them only as needed. Sure $9.99/month may not seem like alot, but when it’s for several services, it all adds up. The way I make sure we don’t need the subscription all of the time is by doing

activities that don’t require a device. Devices are generally the cause of needing subscriptions.

2. Cut down on entertainment expenses: Entertainment expenses can add up quickly. Consider reducing the frequency of eating out or going to movies.

This one is easier for me, as I live in a tiny community with not a whole lot for entertainment. I cook all 3 meals at home daily, making sure to use ingredients

completely (when I can) to save on grocery expenses. I also make my beloved iced coffee at home, saving me about $4 day, without having to sacrifice that little luxury I enjoy. That all being said, I do treat the kids to fast food about once per week. Generally I’ll buy one kids meal, bring it home, divide it between the two of them and add some veggies or fruits that I already have at home to complete the meal. They get a treat and I don’t have to break the bank.

Another big thing for entertainment when I save a lot of money is that I take the kids to play at outdoor parks as much as the weather permits – because it’s free. I also take them for nature walks and to other outdoor and free venues whenever I can. About once or twice per month, I will take the kids to do an activity that costs money – i.e. go to a museum. This way the kids still get lots of play time and excitement, without any real expenses, besides the couple times per month where we do paid activities. But also by not doing those paid activities all the time, they don’t expect them and they feel even more like a treat when we do them.

3. Use coupons and discounts: Look for coupons and discounts when shopping for groceries, clothing, and other products. This can help you save money on your purchases. This also helps for when doing paid activities, you can often find discount times or coupons to help lower the cost.

4. Save on energy costs: Make your home more energy-efficient by turning off lights and unplugging electronics when they're not in use. You could also consider using energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances.

I cover my windows in the cold months (and during heat waves) to keep the house

warm (or cool) as needed. This helps cut down the cost of the heating/cooling bill.

I also spend my time trying to teach the kids that lights are not needed to be on

when not in the room, nor do they need to be on during the day.

5. Shop around for insurance: Insurance premiums can vary widely. Shop around for insurance to ensure that you're getting the best rates. This may vary more depending on where you live, as some areas have one set rate put in place by their local government. But if you can, certainly shop around and negotiate if


6. Reduce transportation costs: Consider carpooling, using public transportation, or biking to work to reduce transportation costs.

As I said, a full tank of gas can last me two weeks, because for the most part, the kids and I walk everywhere. Well, I walk and pull them in the wagon, but same thing. Not using the car unless needed has greatly reduced my monthly expenses.

7. Negotiate bills: Negotiate with service providers such as cell phone and internet

companies to see if you can get a better deal.

8. Buy generic products: Generic products are often less expensive than their brand-name counterparts and can save you money over time.

Plan for unexpected expenses: Even with a budget, unexpected expenses can arise. It's important to build an emergency fund that can cover unexpected expenses such as car repairs or medical bills. Aim to save at least three to six months' worth of expenses in an emergency fund, but never do so at the expense of your current bills.

Living on a budget requires discipline, but it can be a smart financial strategy that helps you achieve your financial goals and gives you the ability to stay home with your children. Even if with multiple streams of revenue and budgeting, you are not able to walk away from your job entirely, you may be able to cut back on the second job (to pursue another stream of revenue from home) or cut back on the overtime hours, which will allow you to spend more time with your children.

This is my wish for all who want it.


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