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The BEST Way To Earn A Passive Income

What is the best way to earn a passive income? Start a blog and become an affiliate marketer? Publish books to the Kindle store? Become a YouTube star? In the video that follows, and the text that follows the video, I explain why none of these things really equates a passive income these days.

That said, after the fact I realized that the income that my husband and I depend on is technically referred to as a “portfolio” income, rather than “passive” income. However, since the phrase “passive income” usually brings up images of people living in huge houses who only work one or two hours a day for a five-figure monthly income, the information I’m about to share holds true. Because the sources that used to be passive income, aren’t so much anymore.

(Please click on the video so that you can get to the YouTube page where you can share it with your online networks. TIA!)

“Passive income” defined

A passive income is an income you receive that is much greater in proportion to the hours you work to receive it. For example, if you work two hours a day – and two hours a day only – on writing novels and marketing, and make more money than you would at an average job ($50K/year), this could be considered “passive” income.

I defined it differently in the video because I was a bad girl and took the literal meaning of “passive” rather than what has become the generally accepted meaning of “passive income.” For that, I apologize.

BUT…the question is, how easy is it to work only fourteen hours a day and make the equivalent of a forty-hour-per-week salary? Let’s look at multi-level marketing first. The company “opportunity videos” imply that you only have to work a few hours per week in order to be making a six-figure annual income within two to five years. But the fact is, the serious money-makers in the industry work a lot more than four to eight hours per week! That’s not to mention the hard work it takes just to get off the ground with MLM, mainly because most people who sign up eventually drop out. While a scant few people make a passive income in MLM, most do not.

How about YouTube? It can be a great source of passive income if you put up the exact right video at the exact right time that just happens to go viral. But this does not happen very often. Because of the competition there is now, people with YouTube channels need to do a lot of work in order to get views and subscribers – and therefore money…especially if you’re looking for a minimum four-figure monthly income.

What about blogging? Used to be, twelve years ago, that you could set up a blog, post two or three times per week, and have enough traffic coming within a year to make money on ads, affiliate products, or your own products. But today, you have to do a lot of marketing to get people to find your blog. You may also have to put a good bit of money into SEO services to help your blog posts show up in the search engine results.

Let’s talk about Kindle. Same thing. Everybody and their brother is trying to make money by publishing e-books to the Kindle store. The people who make a consistent income with their books are usually the people who are consistently marketing…and publishing several new books a year. Once in a while an Indie author gets lucky and writes a great story that makes five figures per month for several months, just because it got off to a great start. But this, like a video going viral on YouTube, is rare.

I don’t mean to imply that you shouldn’t try to start an online business, if that’s what you really want to do. What I’m saying is that for most people making a full-time income with any of the models I just mentioned, the income is not passive.

REAL passive income

The best passive income is when your money is making money to the extent that you can live – and live well – off of that income that your money brings.

Yes, this requires a nest egg of several hundred thousand to a couple of million dollars. Yes, this generally takes a debt-free individual ten to twenty years to achieve. But in twenty years, would you rather still be stuck at a job you don’t like, with no hope of retiring for another ten or twenty years after that, or would you rather be financially independent? If you are willing to work at a conventional job or at your own business, live beneath your means, and invest wisely, you will have reached a point where your money will make enough money so that you no longer have to work.

You can be PASSIVE and still make an INCOME.

So, even though “the experts” call that a “portfolio income”, I still argue that the term “passive income” also applies. And that it’s a lot more passive than online business or MLM income.

To get all the step-by-step details of achieving early financial independence, click here for my book, Hatching The Nest Egg.

Click here to subscribe to my YouTube channel, where you can get regular tips on simple and healthy living.


What follows is the story of an event in my life that happened a few weeks ago. Like this post, I had decided – after writing it – that I wasn’t going to publish it. Because I would lose my credibility as a sort of online life coach/dream coach. I would lose my credibility as an expert in health and nutrition.

Then I realized that the tiny bit of credibility I may have in a few people’s eyes is worth the sacrifice if I can help somebody by sharing my story. Here goes…

Tragic story #1

If you’ve hung around either this blog or my YouTube channel for a while, you’d know that I am big on magnesium, and why. Long story short: I had deficiency symptoms from my late teens to my mid-thirties, after my son was born. Then I started supplementing, and that was the end.

Or, so I thought.

About six months ago (maybe a little more?), I did some serious research to find out what foods provided which nutrients. I wanted to see if I could reduce my supplement intake.

Upon discovering the nutrition in spinach – which includes a nice dose of magnesium per serving – I decided to see if putting freeze-dried spinach flakes in my smoothie would enable me to cut back on magnesium supplementation. It seemed to, and so I cut my supplementation of the mineral in half.

And then, I broke the headphones

A few weeks ago, B had one Internet-connection-related tantrum too many for my P.M.S. brain. I was so tired of hearing about it, so regretting that I’d ever introduced him to the world of video games.

I stood up and starting yelling at him. I don’t remember what his specific issue was, nor do I remember what I said. What I do remember is that I had been sitting at the kitchen table listening to my Kindle with the expensive but oh-so-comfy headphones, and I had the headphones in my hand. I guess I had taken them off because I couldn’t hear the book over B’s whining.

I got so mad, that I had to throw something. So I threw the headphones. Onto the tile floor. Where they promptly broke, irreparably. One side will never work again.

“I’m sorry, Jerry, I’m sorry!” I started screaming, suddenly three times angrier with myself than I had been with B, who very wisely ran out of the house.

I kept screaming, berating myself for my stupidity and generally making J wish he’d never gotten married.

When I’d calmed down a little bit, I decided I’d just have to buy another pair. The cheaper white headphones squeeze your ears, so B doesn’t like to use them. I went to Amazon and found the red headphones.

And discovered they cost fifty dollars.

Oh. My. God. You would have thought Jerry had just been tragically killed. I went ballistic. Psychotic is the best word I can come up with. I ran out of the house, screaming, wanting to jump headfirst onto a concrete block.

I’m serious. That’s how horrible, how despairing, how utterly hopeless and worthless I felt.

To understand my reaction, you have to first understand that I grew up in a house where you did not break things or waste things, even by accident, because my parents lived at the poverty level and you were made to feel guilty if they had to spend an extra dime on you because of your clutziness. You also need to understand that I have strong convictions when it comes to sustainability. I don’t like to have to throw things away. I am a minimalist at heart.

I am also frugal at heart. If I had remembered how much those stupid headphones cost, I probably would have had a little more self-control over my throwing arm.

If you can understand those three things, you might understand my reaction a little bit.

But even for me, the Drama Queen of Southeast Oklahoma, it was an overreaction. I scared myself. I think J began to wonder if I should get professional help. (Actually, he told me he’d figured it had been just an extreme hormonal moment, but I wondered.)

My epiphany

A few minutes later, I returned to the house a bit calmer and announced that I wasn’t absorbing the magnesium from the spinach, and I needed to take the entire dose of the supplement.

It’s really too soon to tell if it’s truly taken care of the problem. However, this month I’ve had the mildest P.M.S. (emotionally speaking) since turning forty…except for the two months that I talked about in this post where I thought I’d been permanently healed of depression. Could it be that somehow during those two months I’d gotten more magnesium in my system?

It gets better (aka, Tragic story #2)

But that’s not all. Oh, no. Yesterday I had a similar meltdown when, two days in a row, I could not get done online what I wanted to. The Internet simply would not stay connected long enough. I cussed in front of my son, nearly broke the laptop screen slamming it shut, and ran out of the house, wanting to die.

And this is not an exaggeration.

As I left, my son, who had witnessed the whole scene (while I carried on inside the house anyway; he didn’t see the half of it), said to me, “You need to take more magnesium.” (Why? Because he himself has horrific meltdowns if he doesn’t get enough magnesium.)

When I had finally calmed down, I thought he might be right. So I took an extra half teaspoon of angstrom magnesium, on top of the teaspoon I had taken that morning.

I should add that the recommended daily amount on the label of angstrom magnesium is one teaspoon.

By that afternoon, I was in a super-good mood. Coincidence? Possible, but not likely. I already knew that I needed more than the recommended daily value of magnesium during my P.M.S. time before I turned forty. What I’ve come to realize over the past twenty-four hours is that I’ve hit the age where my estrogen levels are going to go ballistic at any time during the month, but that having enough magnesium in my system will alleviate the worst of the symptoms.

Like depression, rage, and sui*cidal feelings.

So this morning, I muscle-tested exactly how much magnesium I need to take in order to have an optimum amount to keep my brain chemistry in balance. (By the way, yes, I do get plenty of magnesium in my diet, but it’s still not even close to being enough.)

The result? One and three-quarters teaspoon. Almost twice the daily dose…on top of what I get in my diet.

Magnesium is not just for perimenopause!

I’ve been having emotional struggles ultimately because of brain chemistry imbalance. Sure, the wild fluctuations in hormone levels have been the cause in my case.

BUT, a brain chemistry imbalance is a brain chemistry imbalance. If you suffer from chronic depression, occasionally want to ki*ll yourself, get angry at the drop of a hat, or – yes – experience debilitating P.M.S. symptoms most every month, the first thing to try is angstrom magnesium (just search for it at Amazon). Start with a teaspoon per day. If you still feel off balance after three days, even a little, up the dose to a teaspoon and a half. Or, if you believe in muscle-testing, test your specific need. If a brain chemistry imbalance is what ails you, you should notice a difference in your mood and general outlook on life within a week, even sooner.

I must add that it will be a lot more effective if you cut the sugary treats out of your diet and replace them with more fruits and vegetables, as sugar promotes the depletion of magnesium in your body.

For help in transitioning to a healthier diet, check out my book, Simple Diet, Beautiful You. But whatever you do, if you are looking for a cure for your depression, or want to stop feeling sui*cidal, try magnesium first. At around 22 cents per teaspoon, it’s a lot cheaper than seeing a psychiatrist or spending time in the mental health ward of the hospital.


A Drastic Shift

I was going to publish this post a couple of days ago. Then, I didn’t. First, I was afraid I’d come off as harsh. Second, for a day I changed my mind about starting the new blog (I was having one of those evil perimenopausal hormone surges). But now that I’m in my right mind, yes, I do want to start the new blog, and I don’t care if I seem harsh. Some of you need to hear some harshness in order to wake up.

Now that I’ve got you eager to read, here is the article:

We Westerners are a bunch of sniveling, spoiled brats. Notice the “we.” I’m including myself here.

  • While a child in Africa is dying of starvation, we are complaining that our fries are too cold.
  • While twelve-year-old girl is being forced to offer her body to strangers, we are complaining about having to take our car in for service.
  • While a three-year-old wanders the Haitian village where he has just been orphaned, we’re buying a new iPhone on credit because we don’t want to behind in technology.
  • While an entire family loses their lives to a horribly painful bought of cholera within three days, we fight over which diet lifestyle is the healthiest.

We are spoiled, and I’m damn sick of it.

I’m damn sick of myself. My wealthy, isolated, living-in-a-cocoon-with-her-head-up-her-ass self. I’m two weeks from turning 47 as I write these words, and what impact have I made in the world to show for it? Not a whole lot.


I’ve been ignoring the call of God on my life, pretty much my whole life.

Since my late teens, I have had a strong desire to do something to help my fellow humans – especially women and children – who were being treated inhumanely. I have had a heart to help victims of sexual abuse, rape, and sex trafficking. What did I do? Enter the conventional job force because I was afraid that if I went after what I really wanted to do, I would starve.

Well, I’m in no danger of starving now. And – if you haven’t figured it out yet – I’ve had a wake-up call. An epiphany. Revelation.

A spiritual smack upside the head.

I’m no longer interested in helping spoiled Westerners to live their “dream life.” Most people live their “dream” lives by running roughshod over the poor and powerless. And most people read a warm-fuzzy blog post or inspirational or self-help book and just go back to their miserable, mediocre lives. This is frustrating to those of us who are trying to encourage and motivate people to create freer lives for themselves.

I guess sometimes you have to get really frustrated before you realize what it is you’re really supposed to be doing. Hit some brick walls and fun stuff like that.

My purpose in life isn’t supposed to be writing inspirational romance, helping you get out of debt and quit your sucky job, or writing curriculum for children. It’s to be an activist in the area of human rights and human justice. It’s to give other people wake-up calls. This world is going to hell in a handbasket, because of all the complacent Westerners who throw fits when the Internet connection goes awry. I’ve decided to shake off my complacency. I’ve decided that my voice will be heard – my voice that will call out government corruption, reveal the horrible things done to our fellow humans in the name of money, and call to those of us with resources to wake the hell up and start giving a BLEEP!

I’m still going to blog here probably once or twice a week. I’ll post a video, and write about it. The end.

But I’m going to do something I said I wasn’t going to do again (can you hear my husband laughing in the background?). I’m going to start a new blog.

I’ll  give you a link when I’ve got it all figured out. But that is where I’m going to focus most of my creative energy and time: creating videos to educate, and hopefully motivate people to action, accompanied by blog posts and lists of resources and organizations.

Want more specifics? The name of the blog will be Pro-Human Vegan. The tagline: “Fighting for freedom for the HUMAN animals.” (Because, blast it anyway, veganism shouldn’t just be about cows and chickens.)

If you’re not too scared that what I have to say might make you actually do something positive to fight against corruption and injustice, then by all means, give the blog a visit.


Life Without Running Water

How does one live without running water? And why would anybody want to do that? Well, since we’ve been living without a shower, flush toilet, or faucets for more than three years now (including in our earth-sheltered house), I think I’m qualified to tell you, don’t you?

Watch the following video, and/or read the text below it.

(Please click here to get to the YouTube page so you can share the video with your online networks. TIA! 🙂 )

When we first started developing serious plans about moving, my plan was to be completely off grid. But not to be without an unplumbed house. We did plan not to have a plumbed kitchen, and to use a composting toilet (neither of us could stand the thought of spending thousands of dollars on a septic system, and then having to deal with future problems with it). However, our original plan did include a shower in the bathroom that would use water from the rain tanks. It would be a simple setup (at least, as simple as plumbing can get): a pipe running from one of the rain tanks, into a tankless water heater next to the shower, then into the shower. Ideally this would be run by a solar-powered pump. The drain at the bottom of the shower would empty into a pipe that would flow outside and water whatever was growing in that area.

To fill up the spigoted container in the kitchen that we would use for washing hands and dishes, and brushing teeth, we would use shower water.

But the more Jerry thought about it, the less he wanted to A, plumb the house himself, and B, deal with any leaks that happened in the future. When he finally told me that he’d just as soon not have any plumbing in the house, I was already fine with that. I had not wanted the house to be plumbed, but it wasn’t a big issue for me so I was perfectly willing to let him have his hot shower.

But we don’t have a shower. Or a regular faucet that pumps out water. Or a flush toilet or septic system.

Are we crazy??

It’s funny that Westerners today can’t conceive of living like that. Sure, millions of people live without running water every day because they don’t have any other choice, but why would you choose to live that way when you could have running water?

Simplicity. Save money. Reduce stress.

See, while we were living in our big house in Plano, we only ever had one electrical problem, and that was because the circuit breaker box was getting old. That fix was only a couple of hundred dollars. However, we spent thousands of dollars in repair on plumbing during our eight years in that house, rivaling the cost of all the A/C repairs we had to have done! Since we were moving to an area where we would not be forced into following arbitrary plumbing (or any other) codes, we decided we would not add any more stress or cost to our lives than necessary.

So we decided to live without running water. Here’s how that looks.

Kitchen water, drinking water

In the kitchen, we use the bottom of a Berkey filtration system (the water-containing part) as the faucet (the only faucet in the house). It empties through a bonafide kitchen sink into a five-gallon bucket waiting below. We have two five-gallon water jugs that we keep filled up with water from the rain tanks, and pour the water from those jugs into the sink Berkey.

The actual Berkey top, which contains the black filtering elements for purifying the water, is against the south interior wall in the bathroom. Instead of using the “official” Berkey bottom to capture the water, we use five-gallon Home Depot buckets (they are food-grade). J keeps this system humming by refilling the Berkey top several times a day with rainwater from one of the five-gallon jugs.


Using rainwater from a jug, we put a couple of gallons in a tub and take sponge baths. I wash my hair by dipping my head into the water and getting it thoroughly wet, scrubbing it, then rinsing it. No, we don’t take sponge baths every day, nor wash our hair every day. Neither is a necessary or even healthy habit.


Without running water, you can’t use a washing machine. I will admit, it took me some time – months – before I stopped dreading the morning chore of doing laundry by hand. I do a small load every day to make life easier on myself. Now, it’s just a thing I do. I don’t enjoy it, but neither do I loathe it like I used to in the beginning.


So, there you go. How to live without running water. It’s not as inconvenient as you probably think, and it helps us (especially Jerry, who is in charge of burying the humanure from the composting toilet) get some extra exercise.

Of course, you can simplify your life to a great measure without going to such great extremes. How would you like to know about 307 ways – many of them well within your reach – to make your life simpler? And save money and get healthier in the process?

If you would, check out my book, Crazy Simple: 307 Ways To Save Money, Your Health, And The Planet. Click here for more information.


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