PS:304 – Really? That’s 2 months?

How is it that here we are with nearly 2 months out of the year already?! I wish it was something more exciting to show for it thus far but really, it’s another month of exhaustion, stress, and a 2.5 year old who believes everything is hers! (Okay okay.. it is! But don’t tell her!)

Got the last of the my tax forms I think, still find it funny that some companies do give me a 1099, others don’t. Varies on the companies, but since being a LLC I get fewer, that’s nice, but I’d like to have taxes done and sorted by mid-march, likely going to have to do quarterly starting this year possibly, don’t want to. But should.

If I trusted an accountant, I’d go that route, but I can’t say any other businesses in town that have given me great confidence in an accountant, but maybe it’s the year to look into it and maybe even find someone outside of town who’s familiar with my industry who can really help chisel out a better plan.

Just moved this site to a new server for blogging, this is going to be my private one for assorted blogging projects, so a few more to move over and start some serious dev on over the next 3 months as that’s my personally slated deadline as some of these I want to draw some passive income if possible!

I got my comment from my mystery commenter who I have a rough idea who it is, but let’s not call out a loyal reader 🙂 but exercise is in my plan for the next 3 months too! So much to do, so little time though! You try running after a small girl who thinks its funny to run down the halls at target screaming 🙂 (sorry if anyone of you hear that, she’s excited!)

For now, off to get some more things going! Night all!

PS:303 – Unmotivated.

I just can’t seem to get myself really “hungry” to work right now. It has been a fairly blah week. I find myself exhausted. Seems like I run a ragged week only to run a busy weekend, only to start another week running.

I’m honestly so unmotivated to work lately if it wasn’t for the fact that bills must be paid, mouths must be filled, I’d probably just be a lump on the couch. I’m tired, and honestly? A bit sad.

Life never said on day one “It’s going to be easy! Enjoy the ride!” no it simply said “Here’s a life. Live it.” and that’s what we do.

Being a business owner sucks. Honestly, there are parts I’d give up in a heartbeat. For one? Finances. There are times I wish that the money part like invoicing, hardware payments, etc. all simply was not part of my job, but I’m a solo act at the moment, and until some larger revenue streams come into place to support the addition of another employee – it’s on my shoulders.

Not easy. Hopefully, though this year will present some additional revenue streams, maybe find a good service to manage my finances – would be nice to have everything DONE and simply focus/worry about making things work. I’m good at that! I’m good at making sure folks websites are online, repaired, fixed, running smoothly – but even then that work I do, it’s sad when the customer decides when is a good time to pay.

I’m dealing lately with a few customers who have my finances taking a punch in the gut as I invest time in a project, the idea is I get paid when it’s done, and then the customer decides “Nope!” and even now I have 2 invoices of a decent size from projects which are over a week overdue. 🙁 That’s not a motivation to do more work.

Again, maybe it’s time to be a lump on a log. Or maybe I just need to get more sleep. Time will tell.

PS:302 – I want a 3D Printer. Part 2.

So as of late, I’ve really wanted to pick up a new 3D Printer kit. I just got a “kids” 3D printer in a new style called a “delta” and it’s pretty nice, a little delicate, but I love the flow of how it works.

So I found one on eBay, I played with making an offer and the seller agreed to shave off $9 from the asking price, not much but best he said he could do – it’s a kit and looks like it’d be fun.

Now I have a decently ranked 3D printer from Wanhao USA it has done great in the past but prior to moving to the new house it had nothing but issues, and sadly even after the move, it is still really hard to get sorted – I’ve tried all the tricks and tips, even a customer who deals with them said they can be a pain lol.

I recently though have been thinking about this idea I had to make it into a functional business for printing things for customers + printing out cosplay gear for some folks I know to be active cosplayer’s – but sadly without the larger printer, I can’t do the big stuff.

So it leaves the question, do I want to pursue it as a job and invest some funds? or do I simply want a fun hobby that I can just print more fun things for me? What to do….

PS:301 – Creating Something

While I call this “Post Something” I have lately had my drive to create things again, and while I don’t always lately do the creating, I have LOVED kickstarting things! Also, I have done some Patreon for some amazing YouTuber’s who’s content I enjoy.

So for me lately, it’s not just what I’ve created, it’s what I’m helping create, in turn, some of these things help (or will help) me create and fuel my creativity.

I recently got my Hero 101 3D Printer. It’s not great, nowhere near my MP Mini, but honestly for $49 3d printer, once dialed in I imagine it can help in production if needed. 🙂

Photography though has always been a love, and I need to find more time, and too with it exercise a bit more! To that end, one of the most recent is a steady cam for my smartphone! It still has 50 days to go, but it’s already 325% funded – that should be fun for chasing Lilly 🙂 and two other projects should help me with panoramas and 360 shots! There is one for a wearable VR Camera… it’s got my eye, but not my wallet, one to watch, already funded though.

This year I am going to make things happen, the drone will fly again! I will take the camera out, heck with this new fancy iPhone 7 Plus camera I should be able to get some good shots and who knows after taxes and maybe getting hired (fingers crossed) I may save up for a nice new DSLR and sell all my old gear and get something nice 🙂

For now, going to check on this server tune-up and see if I can’t get to sleep soon.

PS:300 – This is Sparta!

Okay so I had to do it, there was no option to not do it. 300 posts in, 65 to go and I’ll have posted a full year’s worth of posting. Now I know I set out to do a post a day, but as I read recently on a “Being a pro blogger” article it’s not about posting every day, it’s about posting on a schedule you can maintain.

I still plan to continue the idea of post something (PS) it’s been fun, it’s giving me a way to really post, but I want to continue to grow content. Even this a new tool I picked up it’s a great writing tool called Bear for OSX/iOS and I already pro’d up because it allows me to build out content which is easily access via the app on computers, tablets, and phone. Granted if I ever go back to Android full time I’d loose it, but for now? It works.

Has been a couple of busy days. Low on sleep, already have 10+ hours in this week for admin time, and it’s just barely Thursday. Have a server quote nearly ready to go, a little excited about it if it goes through, but I fear the customer who says:

I trust you, do whatever it takes to make my site shine!

Then the follow-up email after a quote that’s even $20 more than he was paying previously you get the response:

Won’t the original idea work? It was cheaper, and it’ll work, right?

Sadly sites that grow don’t always realize that you reach a level of popularity, you need more resources, you need to design better, plan better, you need to really work and invest into your site not just try to scrape by on the shared hosting platform you used. Move up to VPS, move up to Dedicated, move up to load balancing. If you have a site that needs jet fuel to run, don’t put in two cycle gas from your weed whacker. It’s not the same.

Going to take my quote to bed and chill out, for a bit. Till the next post.

PS:299 – Jumping.

Sometimes in life things get to a point where you’ll run yourself in circles trying to sort out a choice. Do I do this? Do I need that? Should I buy 2 or 3? Lately for me, I’ve decided just to jump.

I have been trying to take a risk or two in business, I have made them before, and they’ve failed horribly, but if I don’t work, if I don’t attempt to grow it then it’ll just continue to stale and die.

I tried this in 2016 some with a jump to try Weebly – however for my customers, and even potential customers, even FREE customers, no one wanted it. Folks just didn’t see it as a fit – and that’s okay! Weebly crew was excellent, always supportive, and gave me a break in shutting down, so I would not ever say “DON’T USE THEM!” in fact, if it’s a good fit for your hosting business, give em a go.

Tonight as I’m looking at options for how I want to meet up with some customers tomorrow digitally and looked at costs – started to ponder “What else can I do with this?” and yet the primary need I do have it meets, and affordably. So I snagged a year of Zoom. The software is affordable, offers the ability for me to work on a project with two guys tomorrow who can chime in via their iOS Devices, desktop, etc. we can see each other, talk to each other, and heck we don’t have to wear pants.

Beyond that, I can see using Zoom to help customers and maybe webinar style gatherings to work on some educational stuff I want to do for business later this year – but for now, it meets the need, no need to over-think-it, just JUMP and do it. I know I’ll use it, and it ‘ll save my customers the hassle of the free stuff and limitations it may have.

This year is a lot of jumping, In fact just jumped into the shower and a wild night of John’s Incredible Pizza is rinsed off (burning calories while earning tickets! Boo-yah!). It’s time to wrap up all of the random tidbits, and aiming for bed by 2 am (if not sooner).

PS:298 – Step Forward

So I decided to give things a go.  The issue I sometimes have is I tend to overthink a step, so I said: “Take one”.

My day has far from wound down, it’s nearly 2 AM, and I’m exhausted but I sat down and drafted 3 t-shirts from quotes and old friend used to say – from there I made a very BASIC advertising commitment on Facebook to see if I can actually create a response, and maybe, just maybe make a profit.

I have other options for making shirts, but since I’ve used the platform TeeSpring before I figured why not.

The shirts are located here at the Awesomely Hardcore Store:

PS:297 — What next?

I have a lot on my mind lately. Christmas is over, and yet here we move quickly into 2017, and I’m trying to formulate a plan. What’s next is my big question.

I talked tonight to one of the tech’s where I do some server work, and found out one of the other engineers put in his notice a few days before the holiday. He asked when I was to be hired full time. So far no offers have been made – not sure!

Aside from that, I’m toying with several ideas; several “side” projects that I can create a more passive revenue stream.

So far creating T-Shirts has been on my radar. Quite a bit strangely. I mean I have FlockHosting/Thrust Networks to work on the continued growth and expansion of the brand, but still creating has been a big desire for me lately.

I see customers making money, I see others making money, and while this year my revenues are up from last, I would like more security in my revenue stream. Right now a handful of customers haven’t paid or “the checks in the mail” and with Holiday shipping, I bet it is… somewhere.

I want to build. I want to create. Shirts would give me that option, but I think the thing is with marketing, I’m afraid to be annoying. LOL

What I mean by that and I think the same goes for FlockHosting and Thrust Networks is I am not one to create a fuss. No reason to blast weekly about my services, there is no need to make 30 posts about features, functions, promotional options because honestly? I block them too. I don’t like annoying people with offers.

I recently watched a short webinar on using one T-Shirt design platform in which they said if I did their tactics I could easily be making $20,000 a month. I don’t know about you but making $240,000 in a year, I could eliminate my debt, build up savings, and heck I could hire someone to do a lot of my heavy lifting.

Now do I honestly think that I could make $20,000/month? I don’t believe it. Even if I did spam Facebook Groups, promote on Google, Amazon, etc. I still think I’d be more in the realm of a job as then a Part Time Designer / Full Time Marketer. I haven’t slept well in a month, adding that sounds like it’d kill me!

Lots to consider, lots to layout if I want to make it happen. For now, going to take a short break, stretch my legs and chill out for a bit.

PS:296 — Got nothing to say

And yet, I’ve opened the app. Maybe just the action of going to do it will help? Nope. Didn’t really help. It has been a long week, a long day, and after fighting with the amazingly beautiful “I don’t need to sleep dad” (I won!) I’m back at the desk solved 2 billing issues, and bouncing back and forth on the options to:

A) Goto Sleep.

B) Work on a Server

C) Veg on YouTube

D) Dance.

E) Consider A again.

The year’s nearly over. Hoping that 2016 will wrap up with more paying customers (the dreaded Pre/Post Christmas Delay) with folks who are out of town/not checking billing issues – hoping its quick and painless.

Back to pondering my options, Happy Friday.

First Dispute with Stripe

Over the years I’ve used a few Credit Card Processors, oi. Some good, some bad, some nightmarish (coughpaypalcough)

Well, today I start the journey of a disputed charge with Stripe. I love the service; I love the ease, the UI for the phone app & web end, smooth, clean, suggest it night and day to customers.

Well, I just got the chime on the phone & the email explaining to me the dispute at hand, that a client (who likely just didn’t realize his two years was up and needed to pay again) disputed two charges one for the domain, and one for another two years of hosting. Not exactly what has helped me “wind down” tonight, but such is life. Buckled down, showed the invoices, the email chains with each invoice, and terms of service about canceling service.

So we shall see, the only thing I don’t like (but I understand) is that Stripe is taking funds from my bank -> repay the “fraud.” The last transactions for my account before Christmas is them removing the funds I got + $15 fee for each. I’ve submitted my info, I’ve emailed the customer, hoping between the two we can sort this out and get things rolling smoothly.

I will say this compared to my first “terminal” I used & PayPal’s dispute process, so far I like the quick info provided & a well structured response system. We’ll see if it pays off.