Tuesday, November 8, 2011

November Daily Contests

Here are a few contests that are happening around the web right now. I am probably missing quite a bit, but these are the ones I have found so far. Most can be entered once per day. They should not require any type of share/tweet but may require an application installation and a "Like" on the page. Good Luck!!

L'Oreal "Never Fake it Again" http://www.facebook.com/lorealparis
Lee Jeans http://www.facebook.com/leejeans?sk=app_170740156314868
Hanes http://www.facebook.com/hanes?sk=app_179497395432665
Little Debbie (Until Dec. 30) http://www.facebook.com/LittleDebbie?sk=app_212112032190740
Quaker http://www.facebook.com/Quaker?sk=app_214321791966976
HSN http://www.facebook.com/HSN?sk=app_120894574683032
AAA http://www.facebook.com/AAAFanPage?sk=app_203079469738616
Red Vines http://www.facebook.com/RedVines?sk=app_270009533032927
Super 8 http://pettysgarage.com/b4s8/
Bounce http://www.facebook.com/bounce?sk=app_181152421965834
Luvs Diapers http://www.facebook.com/luvsdiapers?sk=app_216159105112735
Shopko http://apps.facebook.com/sweepstakeshq/contests/165818
Hershey's http://www.hersheys.com/hersheyscookies/cookieexchange/host-a-party.aspx?ICID=HCE2008
I will add more as I come across them. Make sure to check my Facebook and twitter posts for any other online perks I find!

Thursday, August 25, 2011



'via Blog this'

Cheer is having a contest everyday where you can win a bunch of different prizes! All you have to do is watch a video, when you see boxes pop up double click them and see if you "dig up" an item. Just "Like" them on Facebook to get in on the action!!

Today's Mailbox

Week of August 22 - August 27

 "Bee Yourself" Charm- Facebook Contest. I entered by "Like"ing the Charm-It! page. 
Secret Deodorant Sample- From Proctor & Gamble. Signed up for samples at their Everyday Solutions page. Also pictured is a Free iPod Charging cable. I received this from 1SaleADay

Free Coffee Mug. Won from Barista Prima Photo Contest. (Don't remember entering, but woo hoo!)

I also printed out a few coupons $1.00 off Toll House Cookie Dough and $1.00 off a Hanes Product. 


Heading to the lake this weekend. Should have some great pictures when we get back, 


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Saving on Back to School

With a child in school and from all my college years, here are some tips to help save on going back to school!!

1. Save Unused Items From the Previous Year. Emma's ruler was barely touched last year so I kept it for this year and used it around the house throughout the summer. Her used binders and folders become places to showcase her work throughout the year, and organizes all of it by subject/month/season. 

2. Check Notebooks for Left Over Paper. I cannot imagine the amount of paper thrown on the last day of school. I try to buy the notebooks with the perforated edges. At the end of the school year, remove the unused pages and put them in a binder. I use those instead of buying loose leaf paper the following year.

3. Save pens, pencils, markers. Although they may not be decent enough to keep for the following year, most left over writing supplies will work well in the home. All of Emma's crayons and colored pencils are put in a bin for the other kids in the house to use. That way I don't have to go out and buy new crayons, markers, colored pencils every time the kids decide to color. Holding on to pens is nice too, we are always running out... and there are only so many banks that hand out free ones.. haha. You may still have to buy new stuff for your student, but at least you are cutting back supply expenses at home.  

4. Invest in a Durable Backpack. Pay extra for the nice canvas or leather bag. It will last a lot longer and hold everything better, giving your back a little rest. This may be difficult with younger students because they are so apt to choose popular TV characters, but as most of us know those bags are just that and won't last the year. Also make try to scope out ones that offer built in laptop cases, multiple size pockets, a secure place for keys/phone/ipod, and padded arm straps are always nice to have on big homework days.

5. Skip the Paper Bags and Plastic Baggies. Use plastic containers from around your home. Tupperware works great and they have a wide variety of products. For those of us on an even smaller budget, keep the plastic containers that you get from the store. Chip dip containers are great for pudding or fruit, Cottage Cheese containers can hold a good deal of spaghetti or salad. Even plastic bottles can be refilled with juice, kool-aid, or milk! Wax paper makes a nice wrap for sandwiches. Find a inexpensive and reusable bag to put it all in. The plainer the better, let the kids design their own!!

6. Don't Be Afraid of Thrift Stores! Anyone can find awesome deals at the local Salvation Army/Goodwill. It may not be brand-spankin' new, but if it is not ripped, torn or stained, and still looks pretty good it will work. No one is going to know where you bought it unless you tell them. For you "name-branders" out there, a lot of new stores are opening that specialize in labels like DKNY, Hilfiger, Ed Hardy, etc. Many places will also give you credit for anything you bring in!

7. Skip the "Must-Have" Electronics. I am sorry, but a 10 year old doesn't need an iPad. Although it may be a handy tool to use, students can use a computer and get the same information. I would have loved to have one of those pens that takes notes right onto your computer and records the lecture at the same time. I was not, however, willing to pay the $120 price tag. Laptops and new computers are another thing you can skip. Chances are the school, your home and the local library have public computers (otherwise how would you be reading this?). If the school requires students to have laptops, then the school needs to provide them. People have received an education for hundreds of years without the use of electronics.

8. Ask About Scholarship Opportunities. It seems like every week Emma brings home another flier for a sport or after school activity. We are usually on a tight enough budget where a $5-10 fee is about it. Have you seen the cost to play hockey these days?!?! It's insane! A couple years ago, Emma really wanted to give a go at the violin. I was really against it because it was close to $300 for lessons (for the school year). Which yea, in a sense is a good deal, but like I could afford that.... its a rent payment! So I went to the office and asked about a scholarship... and what do ya know?! They had one!! With some special program I was able to get a discounted rate and instrument rental. The part that was even better? I didn't have to pay a dime upfront, because of the program I was able to deduct the fee from my income tax return!
Just remember-- it never hurts to ask!

9. Shop Ahead- Clearance Sales. Every parent knows what their child is going to need ahead of time. One thing for us, snow pants and jackets. Kids grow fast, so for quite a while you will have to replace snow stuff every year. It pays to shop the end of season clearance sales (Jan-Mar for snow stuff). Plan on purchasing snow gear for the following winter, during the spring close-out. Buy items a couple sizes up to allow for growth. Chances are you will save at least 25-50% off retail cost. Same can work out for clothing: buy fall/winter clothing in the spring.... spring/summer clothing in the fall. It will save a ton!!

10. Shop Around for Textbooks.Half.com and Amazon are great places to look. All you have to do is search by the ISBN (the bar code on the back). Always make sure you purchase the correct edition, although there are very few changes between editions, it can be a headache for a student when it comes to reading assignments and information  Another new option that is becoming more popular is textbook rental. Campusbooks offers text book rental for those on a really tight budget. Only downfall of renting is you cannot write or highlight in the actual book... which is a pain. Basically, if you aren't able to use financial aid for books (and even if you do) always look around first. School bookstores are overpriced for new books. Unless you know it is a book that you will want to keep around for a while, buy used. 

Well, there are a few! I would love to hear your ideas on how to save! Please feel free to comment and follow! Have a great school year!

~ Sara

Monday, August 22, 2011

Today's Mailbox

I love when my mailbox pays me!! I think the amount of samples I get now exceeds the amount of bills I get!!! 

Today in the mail I received:
- Febreze "Set & Refresh" Air Freshener (Proctor & Gamble)
- Parents Choice Infant Formula- 1 day supply (Wal-Mart)
- Kotex "Fab Freebies Kit": Pads and Tampon Samples (Kimberly-Clark). 
- Florida's Natural Orange Juice Coupon: $1.00 off 59 oz. or larger.

I am going to try something new with the freebies. Last month I had that long list and honestly... I wouldn't have read it either. It was uber boring! So now, I hope to wait a couple days and post about my freebies. I also will include how I learned about them so hopefully everyone out there can benefit too!!

 Like always, be sure to "Like" your favorite products on facebook. Companies are always giving out free stuff. Also, if you purchase something and are disappointed call the company. In my experience, companies are more happy to send you a reimbursement/coupon then having you tell everyone about your experience (Kraft and Pampers rock at this!). 

Oooh! Almost forgot! Here is a cute little notepad I got from 1SaleADay :

It's a pear! I think it's so cool! (Sorry about the fuzziness.)

Until next time! 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

How about this- Railways?

Once in a while I get a crazy idea about how to fix the United States. I think I am going to start posting them here along with all the other stuff I post. Btw, sorry about lack of posting a lot has been happening around the house so blogging was put on the back burner for a bit. Anyways, here is my idea...

Let's introduce a nationwide passenger rail system. Start with all the interstates and lay the line right alongside of them. Not only will this get people back to work building the thing, it will also help with vehicle emissions as less people would be using vehicles. Make the train faster than the speed limit, so people save time by using the train. We could also reduce our dependence on foreign oil, by exploring alternative fuels (I believe Xcel already has a natural gas powered train?) found in the United States. 

Some of those "small towns" of the 30's and 40s will may come back to life because of the depots that will be needed. Kind of how turnpike systems work? At each stop you know there will be some kind of fast food, convenience store, etc that would pop up. Allow the fare to be reasonable enough that a family could travel cheaper by train compared to cars/planes. Thus boosting tourism and spur of the moment shopping trips. 

As it would progress, hubs could connect the national system to smaller "state" systems and then again to city subways, bus lines, etc. There would be a need for safety and regulations, construction and maintenance, drivers, janitors, etc. What does that mean? More jobs... more jobs... more jobs.

Wouldn't it be awesome to hop on a train, sit, relax, and visit with people instead of cramming into a car and dealing with road rage, idiot drivers and hazardous weather? Not having to wait in an airport for hours on end because there is a storm in Timbuktu? Maybe call it a modernized version of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) but at least it's a step. One of my crazy ideas on how to fix the government... I think I am going to start writing these down more often.... haha

Saturday, August 6, 2011

July Freebies

So I don't have a picture to go with this time (I got too excited and used a lot of these right away). Here is a list of all the items I got for FREE in July!! 

  • SO Delicious Dairy Free- Coupon for a Free Product
  • Suave- Free 18oz Bottle of Suave Naturals Body Lotion
  • Chips Ahoy-  Save $1.00 on Chewy Gooey Product
  • V8- Save $1.00 on any 46 oz variety Tea Beverage
  • Procter & Gamble Coupon Book- Up to $35 in Savings
  • Zipfizz Energy Drink Mix Sample and Online Coupon
  • Secret Flawless Renewal Deodorant Sample
  • Glidden Interior Paint- 1 Quart Sample in Morning Heather
  • Atkins Quick Start Kit- Carb Counter Book, Quick Start Guide, Chef Recipe Book, Two $1.00 off Coupons
  • 2 Atkins Advantage Bars (Chocolate Peanut Butter and Carmel Chocolate Peanut Nougat)
  • One Atkins Daybreak Chocolate Chip Crisp Bar
  • One Sale a Day- Free Business Card Holder
  • VocalPoint- Free Glad ForceFlex Garbage Bag and Coupon Book.
  • Benjamin Moore- Free Sample 1 Pint of Arborcoat Paint
  • Dove Ice Cream- $1.00 Off any Multi-pack Ice Cream
  • Gospel For Asia- Free Book: No Longer a Slumdog. K.P. Yohannan
  • Dairy Queen- Buy One, Get One Blizzard Coupon
  • Purina- Save $2.00 on Any Size/Variety of Purina One Beyond  Dog or Cat Food.
  • Fekkai: Hair Cream, Shampoo and Conditioner Sample
  • Scrubbing Bubbles: One Step Toilet Bowl Cleaner
  • SoyJoy- Free Strawberry Sample Bar: Real Fruit Whole Soy, Gluten Free.
  • Crest Sample Pack: Dental Floss, Mouth Wash, Toothpaste and Coupons.
  • Stoner: Two Invisible Glass Wipe Samples and $2.00 Rebate on any Stoner Product.
  • Clif- Free Crunch Bar and $1.00 Off Coupon
  • Bar-S- $2.00 Off and Bar-S Product.
  • Old Orchard- Free 64oz Juice Drink Coupon
  • Harley Davidson- Free Sticker
  • Aveda- Smooth Infusion Shampoo, Conditioner, and Style Prep Smoother
  • Libman- Freedom! Spray Mop Microfiber Cleaning Pad.

It really paid to watch Facebook this month. There really were some great freebies! I am already rolling along with August. Make sure to "Like" the products you use in your home on Facebook so you are up-to-date with any promotions that may benefit you!

Also check out the buttons on the right, there are some great links to other blogs!!

-See you soon!