More Money, More Problems

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First a quick update from my last blog post. Thanks for the kind words and well wishes regarding my Dengue Fever (a pandemic currently in South America!). I’m fully better now and have opted not to pursue any Workman’s Comp claims. I ended up not incurring any additional medical expenses after writing my blog post and decided it would be more trouble than it was worth to try to recoup funds (and no guarantee it would even be approved since I’d have a burden of proof to show the mosquito bite occurred while I was on the work portion of my trip and not the “fun” portion).

But speaking of work, that’s the subject of today’s post too….

More Money, More Problems

I recently won two separate (but complimentary) faculty fellowships.  This is a good thing, as they both come with merit-based financial awards that lasts for a period of time. However, even though it’s an honor to be named as a fellow (two times over!), the award comes with the “promise” of additional work.  It’s work that I’m excited about and eager to pursue, but it’s more hours of the day.

In my case, both fellowships last one fiscal year (summer to summer), but I’ve already started investing time into the projects, at least in terms of brainstorming, planning, prepping, and timelining everything.

Busy Spring = Hiring Help

Time is finite and this Spring semester at work has been extraordinarily nuts. Two international trips (my work trip to Peru and my upcoming trip with my husband to Italy), plus kids’ breaks from school, plus a full-time job, and now this extra work on top of everything. I’ve considered hiring out tasks I have never hired out before, but to still do so in a way that saves me some money.

For instance, Spring time is the time our trees bloom and pollen and flowers end up scattered all over the yard. I usually take a day sometime this season to spend several hours in the yard getting everything cleaned up. But I literally don’t have the time this season. I’ve looked at my calendar and every weekend is full until we leave for Italy, and then we won’t be back until May! I don’t want to wait that long to get our yard in order.

So I got an estimate from a landscape service to do our front yard. And then before I’d pulled the trigger with scheduling, a friend posted on Facebook that her teenage son is trying to make extra money by doing things like yard work, moving furniture, etc. etc. Score!

Cleaning the yard is a chore we’ve always handled ourselves. But paying a teen to help us out is a win-win. It saves me a bit of money over what I’d pay to professionals, but still frees me up of the time that would have been needed if I were to do it myself (not to mention the aftermath allergy flair-up I routinely deal with).

Saving Time = Saving Money 

When I was in graduate school I had this saying, “I’ve got more time than money!” I would do things like clip coupons and grocery shop every week at 3 different stores because I would ONLY buy the sale items at each store and I’d save more doing things that way. I think I’ve officially tipped over onto the opposite “I’ve got more money than time” side of the spectrum. By hiring out certain tasks, I’m able to free myself up of the time I really need to do work and, essentially, make more money.

Don’t worry, this isn’t a free-for-all! Sure, I’d love a personal chef and a laundry service, but that’s not reality. We’re still handling the vast majority of tasks ourselves. But paying a kid to clean up the yard is so worth it to me. I’m wondering if the readers here hire out for any specific tasks? And if so, what tasks do you find to be most helpful to hire out?

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