Okay, yeh, so on the bright side, if I didn't bust my bum last week, I'd have $75 less in my budget and wouldn't have got the $20 offer this week as it's from one of the new survey companies I signed up with.
So, it's all good :) One week you're up, one week your down, which is why I'm a big advocate of diversifying your money making and money saving opportunities rather than focusing on just one area.
This week, I'd love to explore each topic with you... are there things you'd like to know about completing surveys? Questions you have about survey companies?
Post a comment or send me an email email@example.com and I'll be happy to answer!
...my eBay auctions closed....
...bringing me to $78.01!!! in extra earnings for the week from eBay, Surveys, and Associated Content!! YA-HOO!!! I'm so glad I didn't let you down!!
And here's the chart (a lot prettier than the beginning of the week!)
Now, here's the reality check... with eBay fees, I'll be under goal, but with four Associated Content articles still awaiting approval and payment, the money generated there will cancel out the negative effect of the eBay fees. So, nicely, any way I look at it, I crossed the finish line!
And I couldn't have done it without you! Thanks for the positives and the encouragement- it really helped to motivate me.
So, the totals for the week overall came in at:
eBay = $49.01
Associated Content = $7 plus 4 Articles still awaiting approval/payment
Surveys = $22.00 (not too shabby, I can usually do better- but it did force me to look around for new opportunities and I've now found two good survey sites to continue with.)
Next week, I'm going to explore all these areas further and show you how easy it is to add extra income to your week too. Plus we'll discuss more zero debt stuff, and well, we'll have to come up with a new fun goal for me to follow. If you have any ideas... please, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org or leave it in the comments!
Until then... hurray!! We did it!! :)
Well, there you have it... end of day 6 and I'm at $57.48...
Which means, I'll have to bring in $17.52 tomorrow.... (holding breath!) This is not going to be an easy task as I think my eBay items are pretty close to where I think they are going to close... surveys are totally slim on Sundays... and well, there's always my AC articles, but I probably won't know until next week whether they helped me cross the goal or not.
I hope you'll hang in there with me!
Today brought a $5 survey from PSB. (If you are not signed up with them yet, they can be found at http://www.psbsurveys.com/ - I don't get a ton of survey opps from them, but when I do, they are all for pay, and they pay promptly!)
eBay bids increased by $3... so here's hoping they close well tomorrow and I get uber close to the goal!
"See" you tomorrow,
Within minutes of filling out my profile information I had a $10 survey- woo woo!
This is a company that’s been around for awhile, but I had been lax on signing up for new ones as I do so well with my oldies, but goodies. According to sources, though, these folks have good survey opportunities and pay promptly.
eBay is still doing well and I’ve held off listing my three additional items as I really wanted to make goal without the assistance (I originally planned to only list the three items I’d thought to.)
Thinking about having an eBay yard sale next week! I will be sharing my favorite tips and tricks too next week, so stay tuned.
Got another article into Associated Content, so I’ve now hit my goal of subbing 5 articles. Hoping to sneak in one or two more in the next two days to help cross the $75 dollar finish line.
So, what’s the bottom line for today?
Thanks for hanging in there with me, for the positive votes, and the nice emails too! It’s inspiring to have you with me on this journey and I’m glad you are finding some inspiration too!
I hope I can meet your expectations and cross the finish line this week!
If you are still with me, following my progress as I try to earn an extra $75 this week... well... I have good news today- I'm nearly 1/2 way there!
My total at the end of today is $31.45
The biggest bump today is from an offer from Associated Content that came in on an article (already- woo woo!- that was quick as they can vary on response time.)
eBay is pretty stagnant... hoping that changes as the auctions draw to a close, but the good news is that I have bids on all three items listed, which makes me happy. I will do a more in-depth look at the eBay items after the auctions close and share my best tips for listing and so on with you.
No surveys today (that is bumming me out as I usually manage to find more- just slim pickings this week - of all the luck!) Survey Spot is totally bumming me out these days too. Is anyone getting any paid surveys from them? All I keep getting is contest entries, which I have yet to win in.
Okay... here's the chart!
Looks a lot better that day one :)
Three more days to go- here's hoping I can pull it off!
Three days in and I'm near 1/3rd of the goal... not too shabby!
Day three I lucked out and found a $5 survey at Survey Savvy. (If you haven't joined them yet, you should -great company that pays promptly! There's a link on the side bar.)
My eBay bids are at $14.46... one item with no bids yet, so? That's a little discouraging, but at least I got it listed during the no fee promo.
And I finished 1/2 an article. Day 3 was a really busy one, so I didn't get to list any more eBay items yet... but will be listing three more.
My mail yesterday was almost better than my goals! LOL Free samples of Friskies, Garden Harvest Chips, a cute pill box, and a mass of coupons including $8 and $5 IAMS! Free pet food is my favorite as we have three little mouths to feed.
How did you do yesterday? Good news to report?
You'll find many of these are still active... just jump over to http://www.momdotcom.net/ and check out the freebies and offers.
- completed one $3 Survey at Greenfield
- a 99 cent bid on one of my auctions
- subbed one article to Associated Content, and will finish one more by the end of tonight
So... hmm... $3.99 out of $75... let's see that in graph form:
Well, nope, not any more impressive...but I'm trying! I will not let you down!
Tomorrow morning, I'll be taking a look at my craft supplies and seeing what I might have to eBay. Plus, I'll try to kick out two more articles tomorrow too.
Surveys seem to be a little slim today, hoping I'll find more throughout the week :)
On the bright side, I did get a $5 rebate in the mail today (but can't count that towards the goal- bummer! LOL)
How did you do today?
Here's hoping that will at least equate to a $25 profit, which will bring me a 1/3 of the way towards goal. Will have to scrounge around the house some more tomorrow and see what's eBayable... time to clean out those closets!
As for Associated Content, I've written one article so far... and if I do the math, at an average of $6 an article (at least that's my average lately- wish it was higher... they used to pay a lot more prior to the bonus performance pay, though the performance pay is nice too as it trickles in)... anyway... at that rate, I'll have to write 5 to 6 articles this week, so 1 per day if I'm to hit at least $25, or a 1/3rd of the gaol.
The surveys will be a little harder, depending on what's out there and available. Here's hoping I get lucky and find at least five $5 ones! If not, I'll have to make up the diff in articles or eBay.
I'll be reporting in daily as I make progress.
Are you setting goals too? What'cha doin? Would love to hear about it!
Now, do you think I can do it? We'll find out!
I think you've been generous in your goal selection (Thank You!) and I'm going to do my best to make you proud :) and I'll be sharing the ups, the downs, my tips, and where I'm at each day in relation to the goal starting Monday!
Will you join me in this goal? What will you focus on to earn an extra $75 this week on the Internet? It can be done!
PS: If you tried to leave a comment on a post before and had problems doing so- it's now fixed- so, comment away! I'd love to chat with you!
I must say that $50 to $75 is probably the most realistic choice, but I'm all for pushing myself harder, if that's what you all decide!
It will be fun to report daily on my activities and hopefully make the goal in the end.
Another goal I've set (which is a long term one discussed in earlier posts) is to whittle down my credit cards to nill. The approach, I think I've finally landed on, is to tackle them in order of low to high debt. So, basically, I'll be throwing any extra cash earned on the lowest balance card until it's paid off, and then moving onto the next.
Do you have a method that's worked for you? I'd love to hear about it!
Will catch up with you tomorrow to find out what goal you've selected for me for next week!
So...as I'm getting back in the cheap grocery groove by utilizing freebies, coupons, rebates, creativity, sales, and mystery shopping. (Tip: The key to frugal success is to combine everything possible on each shopping excursion.)
My next goal includes earning some quick cash through survey participation, listing a few items I can scrounge up on Ebay, and writing a few articles for Associated Content.
What do you think is a reasonable goal? $50, $100, $150?
I'm posting a poll for you to help me decide how much I should try to make in one week - check out the right column and click on your choice! (And keep in mind, my Ebay items are not high dollar ones.)
On the really good news earning-money-front, I just sold a frugal living/finance article to American Profile Magazine - hurray! Will keep you posted on when it will be published.
Well, back tomorrow with more stuffs! Don't forget to check out http://www.momdotcom.net for today's freebies!
I will be sooooo happy to purchase a few new items for our household, but I know the end result has been worth the effort. We finally have a little padding in our budget from all the money saved.
It also gave me two weeks to store up coupons, and sign up for mystery shops so we are well positioned to have an excellent shopping week next week too. In fact, I'm going to set my goal at $40 for grocery shopping this week. Making it just a little higher to accomodate meat purchases.
How did your week go?
The most difficult part for me was struggling to figure out how to utilize only what we had on hand for meals, in the last few days. The mistake I made was using more readily available, faster to prepare foods for breakfast, lunch, and snacks. This left me having to cook more heavy-duty (spend more time in the kitchen) in the last few days.
This week I'm also going to be exploring more options of working toward zero debt, and I'll be sharing all the things that are already working for me, and all those I uncover along the way.
Hope you'll continue to join me!
PS: If you are... please leave me a note in the comments... yes, I'm needy LOL Seriously, though, it'd be lovely to know I'm not alone in the pursuit :)
PS- As always, I've posted the best freebies and deal finds I came across this week on my MOMdotCOM blog- be sure to stop by and SAVE! http://www.momdotcom.net
Still holding at my $10 or less goal and with three more days to go, bearing some unforseen event, I should be able to pull through.
Meals today were a little boring, and I am starting to see an impact on my freezer and cupboard, but in a very positive way. Items that may have expired or sat at the bottom of the freezer for too long have been re-discovered and used to help make my goals over the past two weeks.
Surprisingly, my kids have enjoyed the wider variety of meals we've had... and I have to say that I have too.
It will be fun to shop a little more next week, but I'm still going to work on keeping the budget super low, maxing every coupon, sale, and mystery shopping opportunity available. As I do, I'll post the results and share the savings!
How are your goals going?
App-O-Rama is the "art" of making money from credit cards... yup, you read that right... making money from credit cards. And there's merit to it, especially if you have an excellent credit rating.
For more info, check here: http://app-o-rama.com/o/
As for today... still going well with the goal and even had steak sandwiches for dinner... purchased and frozen earlier this year when steaks were actually reasonably priced. If you don't have a deep freezer... consider getting one. The savings from being able to stock up during meat sales will more than pay for the cost of the freezer in the first year alone.
On the bright side, I found I had a reserve toilet paper stash, so I can cross that off my list for the week... and I'm putting all those paper bags from the grocery store I've accumulated this year to good use, by subbing them out for our normal garbage bags. This does mean the garbage can fills more quickly, but hey... this little frugal experiment is keeping much-needed dollars in our bank account.
Makes me want to continue on another week... maybe not with such a low limit, but thinking a $25 might be do-able.
Have you been inspired to try a super low budget grocery store week yet? If so, please share the details- I'd love to hear how you are doing!
Other ideas I've implemented this week are cutting my detergent levels and dryer sheets in half... amazingly (or not so amazingly, this is a long time frugal living habit that many practice) my laundry is just as clean, fresh, and static free as it normally is.
I used to think that habit was a little over-board, but when you add it up (especially with my family of five) that's equal to a $10 savings a month, or $120 a year back in my pocket with no more sacrifice than taking the time to cut a few dryer sheets in half. Cool beanies!
I'll be back tomorrow with a new report and new ideas too. :)
In the meantime, feel free to pop on over to my MOMdotCOM.net board for a helpful article on enjoying fresh produce all year plus oodles of new freebies too!
drum roll, please....
Not that it was easy! Especially today as my two youngest had soccer games and you all know how easy it can be to spend money on snacks, beverages, and so on. Not to worry, I came prepared with a game plan- water, juice, and snacks packed in a nice small cooler did the trick and we spent a total of $3 on hot dogs (1 for each child- there are just some things worth splurging a tiny bit- and concession stand hot dogs are one of those things for us- makes the kids totally happy and the profit goes towards supporting the leagues.)
So, my grand total for the week actually was under $5! Woo woo!
Continuing this goal for next week will be a little difficult as I have toilet paper and garbage bags on my list... not exactly small purchase items. So, we'll see how I can work that one out... any and all suggestions and links to coupons are appreciated :)
How did everyone else do? Have you set a goal for next week?
I'll be back with more and some discussions on credit & debt reduction... along with my personal struggles and triumphs... stay tuned!
PS- here's a few freebies for the road- enjoy!
FRE Sample Pouch of FiberOne Cereal http://www.startsampling.com/sm/FiberOneCereal/captureAddress.iphtml?item=25046&source=251&raf=
FREE Sample of Loreal Vive Pro Shampoo http://vivepro.com/
FREE 50 Million Pound Challenge Kit http://www.fatwallet.com/redirect/bounce.php?afsrc=1&url=http://www.50millionpounds.com/
FREE Subscription to American Cheerleader http://www.freebizmag.com/bramercheer01welcome.htm
So, total grocery bill for today was $1.06 for lettuce, which will be used tomorrow night too for grilled chicken salads.
I'm actually having a lot of fun with this goal and realizing how very much we already have on hand. I might even be able to keep this up for another week or two... a lot will depend on how willing my family will be to forgo any eating out for a whole month. I have to admitt, I will be looking forward to a pizza night in the future!
But, it's very cool to prove to yourself that you can forgo the grocery store and use what is at hand to cut back and save some cash.
Along with our grocery game... I was able to save $20 a month on our phone bill by simpling making a phone call to our service provider. Turns out they have a new plan that is cheaper than the one we are using, huh!
The rep suggested we call regularly to find out what plans are available as they often change. So... there's the tip for today-- get on the phone with your phone companies and see what you can save!
The biggest thing I'm craving right now is diet soda, but I'm refusing to budge on my $10 or less goal at the grocery store this week. I have to purchase lettuce in the next day or two for tacos... but am borrowing a few tomatoes from my neighbor as mine are still green.
Dinner tonight was potato soup and beer bread (yum! recipe for bread below.) Which used up one of the two bottles of Bud left in the fridge from when one of our relatives came for a visit. :) Breakfast was whole grain waffles and still using up that lunchmeat for lunch.
Are you inspired to do a $10 Shopping week, yet? If you are, let me know - I'd love to share the journey with you!
WHOLE WHEAT BEER BREAD RECIPE
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (if you don't wish to make the whole wheat version, just double the all-purpose flour to 3 cups and skip the whole wheat flour.)
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
In a large mixing bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, salt and brown sugar. Pour in beer, stir until a stiff batter is formed. It may be necessary to mix dough with your hands. Scrape dough into prepared loaf pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean.
Totally tickled about this as I’m now exceeding my goal this week already to spend less than $10 at the grocery store.
So without further adieu, here’s the receipt:
Now, “wait!” you say, “I see that you spent $23.56… that’s more than your $10 a week goal.”
“Yes,” I reply, “but I chose to go to this store as a Mystery Shopper and was paid $25 for the assignment (more on that later...) So, in reality, I came out $1.44 ahead! And now, I have all the things like milk and pet food that we really needed, and then some.”
Let me take you on a line by line tour of all the items I purchased and how I managed to trim the bill so low.
MILK – Purchased ½ Gallon at $1.25. The full Gallon was $3.49 and much more than I needed, the ½ Gallons were on sale for 4 for $5… a much better price and amount. Even had I needed a Gallon, it’d still be cheaper. Always watch your prices carefully!
VISION CARE- My husband needed contact lense solution. I often dread this purchase as coupons can be hard to come by. However, I shopped the shelves and found Vision Care had an auto $3 off Coupon attached, bringing the cost down from $8.99 to $5.99.
Tip: Most contact lense solutions have the same ingredients- check the labels and don’t be afraid to try different products.
BAND-AIDS- With 3 children, it’s easy to run out of these. Had a $1 off coupon which cut the price nearly in half. Normally, I would wait for a sale or shop around on other store visits, but we were completely out of this much needed item, and just my luck, some one would instantly get a boo-boo when I got home if I didn’t pick them up.
KLEENEX- The store had a sale of 10 for $10 on the big boxes. Total deal! If I had more coupons, I would have picked up more, but I settled for two boxes with a 35 cent off coupon.
CEREAL- Had a free coupon for this item, passed my way by a friend – gotta love that!
TIDY CATS- With a store coupon combined with a manufacturer’s coupon clipped from the Sunday ads, plus a sale on this item, it was a must buy even though I have a box at home. The normal $6.69 box cost me $3.49.
GOODLIFE RECIPE DOG FOOD- Had a free coupon from a freebie I posted on momdotcom.net a few weeks ago… the promo is no longer active, but they do have a $1 off coupon available if you need one. http://www.goodliferecipe.com/coupon_reg.aspx
Tip: I mix freebies like this in with my dog’s regular food in small doses so that the dog does not have digestive problems (got this tip from our local vet.) If you don’t wish to stretch your dog food in this manner, when you run across freebies like this, please donate them to your local vet.
PURINA ONE DOG FOOD- Again a free coupon, this time from the Purina One 30 Day Challenge.
This offer is still active, so run and sign up! http://www.purinaone.com/radiochallenge/intro.htm Purina is our preferred brand, so this is a great freebie for our household. If that link doesn't work, cut and paste this link http://www.purinaoneresults.com/ to sign up for the 30 Day Challenge.
SHEBA CAT FOOD- Snagged a free coupon again from a freebie I previously posted on momdotcom.net (If you aren’t reading my daily blog over there… might I suggest it? Lots of freebies!)
This offer is also still active http://www.sheba.com/home.asp (only now it looks like they are sending the can directly to you, rather than a coupon... not a biggie, still a free can!)
ALPO DOG FOOD- Free with coupon cut from Sunday ads.
MEOW MIX CATFOOD CAN- Free with coupon cut from Sunday ads.
PURINA PUPPY CHOW – Found this on sale and I had a $2 off coupon I received from Purina as I’m on their mailing list.
Tip: It pays to be on manufacturer’s mailing lists as they often send out useful coupons and sometimes samples too.
So for $65.22 (before in-store sales) worth of needed groceries, I paid $23.56… a $41.66 savings!
Of course, it got better because I chose to shop this particular store due to the availability of a Mystery Shopping assignment, which I detailed the results of above... bottom line, earned $1.44 plus I now have $65.22 worth of free groceries.
While I cannot tell you, to keep with confidentiality agreements, which shopping company… I can direct you to the lengthy list I compiled earlier this year of Mystery Shopping companies: http://momdotcom.blogspot.com/2007/01/lengthy-list-of-mystery-shopping.html
In addition (because I always love additions and combining all the frugal-savvy-ness I possibly can) I used my banking card, which is a credit union card and offers a fab point program for free! Always shop around for banks too, it’s in your best interest to take the time to do so.
So there you have it – I am $1.44 to the positive on my $10 or less grocery shopping goal for week 1.
I hope this helps you make it closer to your goals too!
Should be a fun challenge! I will be reporting throughout the week on my progress and any tips and tricks I find/learn along the way.
Care to join me?
Tonight is Shrimp Pasta for dinner (picked up $4 bags of shrimps during a summer sale!) With some noodles, diced tomatoes from the garden, and herbs... yum!
Breakfast and lunch are easy today as of course, we have cereal and lunchmeat to use up. Will be getting more creative with ideas after we use up the lunchmeat. :)
(Okay, so I'm spending money on a book to get out of debt, how ironic is that? But, it's a very worthy $10 investment that's already paying off.)
One of the exercises encourages you to write down every single debt you have. While I already maintain a debt list, this is a little more detailed and whew... that was a scary process... but it did give me a better handle on the big picture and gave me a good list to start tracking and chipping away at.
On to the next steps!
Will you join me?
I'll be sharing all the ups and down of the money-saving, money-earning, and financial tips & tricks that I encounter on the road to zero debt.