Our entrepreneur journey has been a wild ride and very unplanned and unorganized. Basically a fake it as you make it or fly by the seat of your pants and figure it out as we go. To be honest I think that is just how I work and it was always going to be that way for me.
One of the things we have continued to focus on and will continue to focus on is having multiple streams of income. One thing that is very obvious for me in this lifestyle is there is a lot of uncertainty and fear. The same paycheck doesn’t just come in every week or month. Instead it can vary, change and be in consistent.
That is what it is when you are an entrepreneur and for me the best way to manage that is to have multiple, totally different income streams. This can cause challenges since it is basically running multiple businesses. But for me it is worth the effort to have some peace of mind around our income.
In 2017 we brought in over 6 figures and we didn’t even know it was happening . . . How did that happen? I am a little embarrassed to say we didn’t realize we were making that much and know I need to work on this . . . When you have multiple streams and no set salary things can vary so you don’t always have a perfect pulse on what is going on. Yes – I probably should have a better idea and I am working on that in 2018.
But hey I am new to all of this and sometimes I just have to learn from doing vs always having my ducks in a row and getting everything 100% right. If I did that my business probably never would have started or grown to where it is now! I talk about this in our FREE Business Blockers giveaway. You can sign up here: 3 Blockers That Can Stop Your Business From Becoming A Reality And What To Do About Them
I started my business with a couple clients in fall 2014 and then in March 2015 we made the decision to start growing our businesses so that Craig could leave his 9 to 5 and we could be completing location independent. He officially left his full time role on August 1st 2015.
Also note with making 6 figures some of that went to taxes, paying people on the team who do work for VPH, video editing for CFA and so on. Our take home was more around the 60K mark. We have gone back and forth on how much we need/want for full time travel and have done it at $4k a month but think that we are falling more into the $5-$7k a month if we want to go out to eat and stay at some nicer places and do some more expensive activities.
Learn more about how we became a full time family.
Table of Contents
Here it is: How we made 6 figures as a location independent family traveling full time around North America.
First things first. Our goal has always been to only work 20-40 hours a week TOTAL between the 2 of us. I am happy to say we are currently at that point and are closer to 20-30 hours a week. When we made the choice to become Entrepreneurs we knew we didn’t want to work 60-80 hour work weeks. The whole reason we chose this lifestyle was to spend more time together as a family.
Getting to this point took more then what we are currently doing and in the beginning Craig was working a full time 40 hour work week at his 9 to 5 and I was working a good 30-40 hours for about 6 months to kick things off so our business could replace his 9 to 5 income. I would say for about the 1st year of being full time entrepreneurs I would work between 30-40 hours a week and Craig would do about 20 hours a week.
There have been opportunities we have had to turn down and choices we have had to make to stay within this desire of working less. Had we both continued working at 40 hours a week I truly believe our income would be doubled. But that was never our goal. Making more money would be great but we aren’t going to give up more time with our kids, traveling and exploring to make that happen. Instead we want to learn how to scale our businesses without putting in more time but instead outsourcing and figuring out smarter ways to do it.
Do I think this is possible? Absolutely! Do we know how to do this – not yet. But we are working on it!
Plus I also understand there may still be weeks where I am working 40 plus hours a week – but I am OK with that since it will be a choice we make to spend that time working to move things forward with our businesses. This entrepreneur life is never consistent :)!
Stream 1: Virtual Powerhouse (68% of income)
This is the business I began building when we first got on the road in 2014. Since then it has grown to be our largest income stream.
What it is: In simple terms it is a virtual assistant business. The thing is when I started I didn’t like the term virtual assistant and didn’t like the idea of being an admin. Instead I wanted to focus in on specific services that I could provide in monthly packages vs. doing one off hourly work or having to be on call for whatever a client needed.
What we do: We currently offer Pinterest strategy/scheduling support, Social Media creating/scheduling, Blog post formatting, eMail marketing, graphic design and website design. Yes that is a lot. Yes it is multiple streams within one of our streams.
How we do it: I currently have 5 people that do work for me. They range from an hour 1 week up to 10-15 hours a week. That is all each person wants so it lines up well with what I am looking for and what they are looking for. In the future I may build to have a full time person on the team but we aren’t there yet.
Craig takes on all the website design projects (which come in more randomly and inconsistently as it isn’t an area we put a lot of work into advertising but more do it through referrals) and my sister Megan does all the graphic design work.
Next steps: The potential for this business to grow is there and I am trying to figure out how to keep scaling it and growing it. What I do know is that I definitely want to keep focusing on the different streams we have place in the business. Since who knows if Pinterest or Facebook or WordPress is going to make a drastic change . . .
Check out this post on how I started my business: How I Started My Online Business
Stream 2: Craigs Old 9 to 5 job (18.5% of income)
Craig is in a consultant role with his old business. Please note no one else at his job works remote but with multiple conversations and great work ethic and delivery Craig was able to work it out so he could stay on at his job in a consultant role. It is a Database Administrator role. His degree is in Computer Science.
Check out this interview Craig did for More Then A Wheelin’ about how we made remote work happen with his 9 to 5: How To Transition Your Office Job Into A Remote Work Position
What it is: Craig does 5 hours consistently per week of work for them. He also takes on projects that can range up to 20 hours a week now and then.
What he does: DBA or database administrator. He helps maintain the databases keeping them current and fine tuned and writes queries so people can pull the date they need.
How we do it: Craig works the hours he needs to when he needs to. In order for this to happen he needs to be somewhere where we have internet and then our kitchen table turns into his office. Or he heads to the van to do a conference call where it is quieter.
Next steps: Craig enjoys the work he is doing and really likes the people he works with. He also wants to keep his feet in the industry and wants to keep a pulse with what is going on. The plan is to stay in the consultant role as long as they will have him! Ideally he works 5-10 hours a week doing this work.
Stream 3: Crazy Family Adventure Blog (12.5% of income)
Oh what a journey this has been. You know when you start traveling full time you think you can start a blog that is going to make you lots of money . . . the reality is a whole different ball of wax and takes lots of time and dedication to make it a reality!
What it is: We have a blog where we share family travel destinations, tips, full time travel, rv travel and digital nomad information. See that – multiple streams again :). We also have a You Tube channel and a Podcast (that we are working at getting more consistent on :)) that focuses on full time travel and the journey we are on.
What we do: We currently focus the majority of our income on ad revenue from the blog and some affiliate revenue. We have dabbled in sponsored posts but have found that we much prefer the more passive income streams of the ads and affiliates. We also do some freelance writing that we get paid for.
How we do it: We pick topics to write about that have a good keyword density so that we can hopefully get on page 1 and get consistent views each day to help with the ad revenue and affiliate sales. For the Podcast and You Tube we focus on topics and videos that we think will appeal to our audience and where they will get value out of how this lifestyle works and why it is worth it to travel with kids.
Next Steps: Our next step is to put more focus on the blog. It has always come #3 behind the streams above but we would like to change that and have it be right up there next to #1 from an income perspective and the only way to do that is to put more time and effort into it. We have always tried to treat it like a business but time and resources don’t always allow us to do that.
However if things keeping going as projected we should move it into spot 2 this year! We are currently at over 90,000 unique pageviews a month which is super exciting! My goal has always been to get to 100K.
We also want to be more consistent with our Podcast and also our You Tube channel to continue to help people who want to live a life of full time family travel.
There are so many ideas and things we want to do with the blog and our social media community – so stay tuned!
You can check out and join 🙂 our social media accounts here:
Stream 4: Courses (1% of income)
We currently have 3 paid courses and 2 short freebies/opt-ins. Again multiple streams. See a trend here?!
This course gives you the ins and outs of how to start your own business. It shows the exact methods I used to start and grow Virtual Powerhouse. It covers topics like: How to choose your business, how to find clients, networking, keeping your business simplified.
**Use Code save50 and get $50 off of the course for a limited time!**
What we do: The course is for sale on our site for anyone to purchase whenever they would like. We also have affiliates setup that share our course with their audience and make a % of the sale. Plus we have talked about it on podcasts and written for other websites about it.
Next Steps: The next steps are to make the course larger by adding specifics around being a Pinterest VA, VA, Social Media specialist, etc. Anyone who buys the course will get these new courses when they are released.
Course 2: Pinterest and Tailwind 101
This course walks you through the basics of using Pinterest and Tailwind to get more sites to your blog or website. It is a similar strategy that we use with our Pinterest clients. People who don’t want to pay us the monthly fee but instead do Pinterest on their own will get all the basic information they need to get their Pinterest account up and running and to see results!
What we do: Just like course 1 we sell it on our site and through affiliates.
Course 3: Pinterest Pin Image Creation 101
This course walks you through the ins and outs of creating a brand so your pins are recognizable in the Pinterest news feed. Users will know it is your pin without even seeing your name. Also learn how to create pins in Canva using your pin brand.
What we do: Just like course 1 we sell it on our site and through affiliates.
This is a short FREE email series that talks through the 3 business blockers and how to get past them in order to build your business and see success.
Course 5: Pinterest Tips and Tricks
This is a 5 part FREE email series providing you tips and tricks for learning more about how to use Pinterest.
There you have it streams within streams of income. . . . The amazing thing is that all of them have continued to grow and each week, month, year we learn more about how to be entrepreneurs. It is a wild, crazy, stressful and fun ride to be on. Yet at times I am ready to throw in the towel with all of it and just have Craig get a regular 9 to 5 job again. But then I stop and realize the freedom we have built and know I can never really go back to a 40 hour a week lifestyle.
If you are thinking you want to hit the road with your family or are just looking to start your own entrepreneur journey to have more freedom in your day all I can say is just do it! Get started and keep going but above all else keeping moving forward. When I think of where we were 4 years ago I could NEVER imagine we would be here!
If you are wondering where to start check out our course: How To Start Your Virtual Business So You Can Travel Full Time **Use Code save50 and get $50 off of the course for a limited time!**
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