Thursday photo #299

After a rather lengthy run-up period, I’ve kicked back into work mode. Last year, I cut right back on my freelance work to focus on my blog and Instagram. Twelve months on, I’ve realised that as an income stream, it’s too unreliable. When I did my tax returns, what I was paid each month varied by a huge amount, far too much to plan for. Additionally, I’ve had real problems getting people to pay on time. So, I’ve gone back to some reliable freelance work that always pays at the same time each month. I’ll still carry on with my blog, but I feel relieved that it’s not my only income stream.

Sticking up for myself

With more a more reliable income stream, I feel somewhat empowered to stick up for myself when people don’t pay me. Back in November, I did some work. I sent my invoice as usual. I don’t put payment terms on my invoices because I’m happy with the standard 30 days.

By the beginning of January, I hadn’t been paid. After much to-ing and fro-ing, I was told that their payment term was 90 days. I pointed out that I hadn’t agreed to this and was then told that they were awaiting a payment and wouldn’t pay me until they’d received their payment. This happened to be taking place in about a fortnight – miraculously putting it at the 90 days.

So effectively, they had decided that they were going to subject me to 90 day payment terms without informing me. They then decided they were going to fob me off until the 90 days. So, I took legal action. I don’t expect to get paid any quicker and it wouldn’t surprise me if I didn’t get paid at all. But I’m not doing it for the money. I’m doing it for the people who find themselves in the situation I would have been in if this had happened six months ago.

Desperate to get paid so I could pay my bills and feed my family. Having to meekly accept their payment terms, or beg for earlier payment just to make ends meet. This isn’t an acceptable way for a freelancer to live, just because a business they are dealing with is morally bankrupt. So from now on, I will always take legal action to stand up for my rights. If those of us who can take action do so, maybe one day businesses will treat us all better.

Taking care of the environment

I’ve always been concerned about the environment and try to be as eco friendly as possible in my way of life. It’s also a value I attempt to instil in the children. After all, our generation are pretty much relying on them to put right all the problems we’ve caused. I’m quite proud that the girls seem to be well informed and thoughtful about this sort of thing. This week though, Libby has really excelled herself.

A few weeks ago, I spotted that a charity we support was collecting crisp packets for recycling through TerraCycle. I asked the girls to save their crisp packets, and I intended to send them off to the charity when we had enough. As the crisp packets built up, Libby started asking questions. She realised that charities and schools could make a bit of money by saving their crisp packets and decided to chat to her head teacher about it.

To her credit, the head teacher completely embraced it and tasked Libby with making some posters and writing something for the newsletter. She got her friend involved and the two of them have been hard at work all week. It sounds like something is going out in the newsletter on Friday, and the school will be collecting crisp packets from now on. I’m really proud of Libby for caring about that sort of thing, and for taking the initiative to do something about it.

Thursday photo #299

We’re enjoying not doing too much during the weekends at the moment. This does mean that I don’t take many photos though. So this week, I just grabbed a snap of the girls in Lia’s newly decorated bedroom. I’m waiting to find out when the carpet can be fitted and after that, she’ll finally have her own room.

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  1. Well done to Libby for getting the whole school on board with the crisp packets! You must be very proud of her. Well done to you for taking that company to court too. One of the companies I worked for for a while paid me on 90 day terms. It was ridiculous. I’d worked for them for months before I saw a single penny. One month they didn’t even pay an entire invoice – just some of it. I wasn’t too disappointed when they stopped putting work my way!

    1. Thank you. How ridiculous not to pay a full invoice! The problem I had with this wasn’t so much the 90 day terms as the fact they didn’t tell me about it and expected me to just put up with it. If they’d told me in the first place I wouldn’t have done it at all.

  2. Such a lovely photo of your girls. A big well done to Libby on getting the school to collect crisp packets. We save ours for Girls’ Brigade as they are collecting them for recycling there. Huge well done to you too on standing up and taking legal action. It’s really not on that people think it’s acceptable not to pay bloggers within a reasonable period of time. I’m glad that you have your freelance work to provide a more steady income.

    1. Thank you Louise. It’s great to hear that girls brigade are collecting crisp packets too, I’m so pleased to be able to recycle ours rather than bin them.