I'd like to say hello to the new visitors and subscribers! It really means a lot to me that you are interested in following my blog, I hope that I'm able to keep finding and sharing deals that you like!
Anyways...that's all, now back to searching for more things to post!
Making your own baby food is a great way to save money and also ensure that you know EXACTLY what goes into your baby's tummy. I've compiled a list of a couple essential items and I've also included a recipe for muffins at the bottom. Anyone have any tips? I welcome comments and suggestions, and especially recipes! Fresh Baby So Easy Baby Food/Breast Milk Trays
These are great because each section is 1 ounce, and you can keep the food nice and fresh in the freezer by securing the lids on top. Once frozen, the cubes may be stored in ziplocs too.
Super Baby Food My friend recommended this book and gave me a copy at my baby shower. My impression is that this book is basically the "bible" for feeding your baby! I really love the variety of recipes, and the chapter on making other baby items such as wipes and diaper rash treatment.
Baby Muffin Recipe (I've tried them, and they are YUMMY!)
1 cup iron fortified infant cereal (such as oatmeal)
1 4oz baby juice (any flavor or variety)
8oz of stage 2 baby food (such as sweet potato)
1/2 brown sugar, packed
1 whole egg (or 2 yolks if preferred)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400 and prepare baby-sized muffin tins with cup liners.
2. Mix all ingredients together, leaving four for last. The batter should not be very lumpy.
3. Spoon the batter into cups.
4. Bake until golden brown and it passes the "clean toothpick poke test"
5. The baking time will vary depending on the muffin size and type of tin. Approximately 10 minutes for baby sized muffins without juice or 14 minutes with juice.
Wow only 6 days ago I requested a care package for my husband and it just arrived today! It had a t-shirt, hat, beanie, playing cards, ear bud headphones, a pen, keychain, and more in it. If you are in the military, or know someone that is, sign up for one asap! More info HERE
I heard about Service Intelligence over 5 years ago when one of the stores I worked for used them to hire mystery shoppers, so I am positive this is a trustworthy company to sign up with. There are jobs available all over the country and they typically pay around $10 each job, plus allowance/reimbursement for expenses (like food or other items purchased). Fill out an application HERE, once approved, you can search and sign up for jobs in your area.
Here is another easy way to make a few bucks and clear out some clutter! Cash4Books.net will buy your used books and pay you for them by check or deposit into your paypal account. Just search by the ISBN on your books to find out how much they are paying, then box all the books up with the invoice they provide and slap on a shipping label (printed from their site) and take it to the post office, UPS, or Fedex. It's that easy! I got my shipment ready this morning and will be sending it out. Now I have another $10 to add to my earnings, and I can kick back and relax because I reached my $5 goal for today!
To all my military wife friends, and anyone how would like to send some freebies to a service member, you can request a free care package from Scion HERE!
Best part is it can be sent to your stateside duty station address :)
After adding up my survey totals yesterday I realized that I want to set a goal for myself in 2010, and that goal is to make $5 a day! If I reach this goal I will make over $1800 for the year (a few free days in there for holidays). Then, I'm also adding a second part to the goal: to save $1500+ using coupons and rebates (on average I save $30+ each time I buy groceries). If I were to add up the value of all of the free products I get from samples, giveaways, and product testing, I'm sure the savings would be closer to $2000!
Here's how I'm going to do it:
3. Start trying to find mystery shopping opportunites
4. Buy "money-maker" items (ex: free after rebate combined with a coupon at purchase)
5. Clean out my closet and sell online (ex: craigslist or half.com)
6. Odd jobs and photography
7. Any suggestions???
Ultimately I want to "make" my family over $3300 as a stay-home-mom in this next year. I'm pretty confident it can be done. I'll post a monthly update to show my progress.
Well I've hit about the 6 month point from when I first started doing surveys online and using SwagBucks. The best part is that I've found that the more surveys I complete, the more offers I get, so I think in another 6 months it's possible my totals could be double what I have below!
305 swagbucks earned (~$33.80), 225 cashed out for $25 in Amazon.com gift cards
$4.19 via PayPal (before PayPal transaction fee which is $.01 per deposit)
(earn money for viewing ads and websites, deposited to your paypal account weekly)
On Saturday I got my quarterly credit in the mail for recycling ink cartridges and making purchases at Office Depot. It was almost $17! So my sister and I headed over to see what I could get to help organize some of my coupon mess and look what I found for only $9.99!
I'm guessing it's about 10" wide by 8" tall, so much roomier than the plastic coupon holder I was carrying in my purse (which was overflowing). My husband said he couldn't believe I was going to carry it to the store when I went shopping. I say why not? It's cute and I have a much easier time finding the coupons I need.
By the way, if you didn't know about Office Depot's Worklife Rewards program, check it out HERE. I get $3 per cartridge I recycle. With all the ink I use printing coupons online, it's nice to get a little reward back!
If you plan to shop online during the holiday season I highly suggest that you sign up for ShopAtHome.com! You will get $5 just for joining and then a percentage back when you buy online through various retailers. Then when you hit $20 in rebates, you can cash out!
Here's another paid survey site for you! Check out MindField
You can be compensated ~$1 for a survey that lasts 5-15 minutes (this will vary depending on the project) and cash out once your account hits $5. You can even cash out directly to PayPal!
Lately I've seen a few blog posts about obtaining coupons by giving product feedback to companies. It seems like many people have received coupons in the mail after complimenting a company via their email or feedback form on their website. A few weeks ago, I decided to give it a try and got coupons for both Bush's Baked Beans and Fresh Express lettuce. Next I'm going to try a few of my favorite beauty and cosmetic companies!
This reminds me of 6th grade when we learned to write business letters by contacting our favorite companies (snail mail back then) and lots of kids in my class got freebies! Our feedback is valuable to companies so they are willing to reward! I'll start tracking my results here and I'd like to hear from anyone else that has success. I suggest you also check out this post.
Yesterday I found out about and joined a new survey site called Say Nation. This website works like most of the other survey companies by awarding points that you can cash in for prizes. Within a few minutes of joining you should be able to get up to at least 500+ points. Prize levels start around 12,000 for a $10 gift card. Don't forget to refer your friends for even more points!
Not convinced? Well, if you have a little spare time during the day, I think completing surveys is worth it! Right now I'm earning about $20 worth of cash and prizes a month between surveys and Swagbucks. Christmas and birthdays are approaching quickly so I plan to put my earnings to good use!
For a limited time at Diapers.com, new customers can get $10 off their first diaper order with code 10PAMPERS, plus 50 bonus Pampers Gifts to Grow points! You also get FREE shipping on all orders over $49, delivery in 1-2 days.Simply purchase any Pampers diapers in your first order. You'll receive your Gifts to Grow code on your order confirmation page.
Wait, there's more! Make sure to print out the rebate page to opt out of the subscription to Parenting magazine and you will get a rebate of $14.97!
I just ordered some formula and diapers, after rebate the diapers work out to be about $.10 each which is a great price!
* Please note that I bought these items because there was a Buy one get one 50% off sign in the Covergirl section, but it turns out that was an old special, they still honored the deal for me and gave me 50% off the $8.19 item!
Total: $20.52 (after tax) - $7.99 Rebate for Blink Tears and $5.99 for Zucol ---> $6.54 after rebates
NOTE: Choose items like the eye drops or cold medicine to get your total up to $25 and because they are free after rebate. Also, I bought 5 packs of diapers to qualify for the voucher for a free pack (more info at Rite Aid's Single Check Rebate page )
GRAND TOTAL: $26.42 and I get 6 packs of diapers plus all of the other items, even if I didn't get the other items ~$4.40 per pack of diapers is a good price!
There is another deal scenario at Give Me Neither that I suggest you check out!
Pinecone Research is an awesome survey site! They pay $3 per online survey, and you will receive a check quickly after completing each survey. I can personally attest to this, I've received $15 since joining a couple months ago, hey it isn't much but it's something!
Go here to sign up because they are currently accepting new members! I hear that they are especially looking for 18-24 year olds.
My little boy was born on 9/16 at 12:28pm, and he's been keeping me busy the past two days. I will get back to posting shortly, but until then I hope you are keeping up with deals by checking out the blogs I have linked on the right side of the page.
Almay eye liner $7.49 (pricey I know, but I'm almost out) - $2 SCR = $5.49
Healthy Choice Fresh Mixer on sale $2.50 - $2 coupon from HERE = $.50
5 Johnson's Baby items (powder, bath wash, lotion) on sale $2.99ea - 5 $1 coupons from HERE and HERE and the 9/13 newspaper - $10 SCR for buying 5 = 5 for FREE!
Before handing the cashier any of the other coupons, I make sure to use a $5 off $25 Rite Aid Coupon from HERE
Total (after SCR, w/tax) = $6.71
I'm also submitting the receipt for Rite Aid's Fall "Gift of Savings" cash back (gift card) program where you get $5 back for spending $25-50, $10 back for $51-100, or $20 back for $100+, purchases must be made between 9/13-10/17. I think it is based on the total after coupons, more info is available HERE .
This week there are some good deals at Walgreens, but I decided to just get a couple items that I need (stamps and newspapers) and a few freebies. If you'd like to see a good list of this week's deals, visit Moms By Heart
True North Snacks on sale for $3 - $3 Register Reward = FREE
combine with this coupon (at the bottom of the page) for $1 overage
Glade candles on sale for 2/$5 - $1 Register Reward = 2/$4
combine with any Glade Fragrance coupons you have for an even lower price
I had a $3 off 2 coupon so mine were 2/$1
I encourage you to read this post at A Thrifty Mom which explains the coupon policy at Target. I know I've had issues there before, and I hope this helps if you encounter a cashier that isn't willing to take your coupons.
In the near future (hopefully) you will probably notice a large gap in my posts because I'm at the hospital having my little boy. I'm about 38 1/2 weeks now and my body is preparing me for labor with all sorts of fun aches and pains and contractions... Until things get awful I'm doing my best to find some deals and get them posted for everyone to take advantage of!
So, in my absence I suggest you check out the great blogs I have linked on the right side bar!
I'm proud of what I have inspired my friend Cricket to do with her coupons and deal finding skills! Here's what she was able to get at Target this past week for nearly free:
This is from her blog...
"So I head to check out... it all gets scanned in my total is: $12.25
If you know Aveeno you know that crap is like $4 something bleh! so thats a good chunk of that amount haha but I love the stuff!
Anyway, I used 9 coupons. A manufactures coupon teamed up with a Target coupon each for $1 off of Aveeno, A manufactures coupon teamed up with a Target coupon each for $1 off any Johnsons bath product, 3 Target coupons for $1 off any Gerber feeding accessory, A manufactures coupon for $1 off of any Cheerios product, And a manufactures coupon for $1 off any size Vaseline Aloe Fresh.
So.. I got the baby bottles that were .99 each (paid nothing got each free with coupon)
Got a travel size Vaseline that was what .89 or something (paid nothing got it free with coupon)
Got a cup Cheerios thats like .99 (paid nothing got it free with coupon)
A Johnsons baby wash that was $2.24 (paid .24 with both coupons)
And my beloved Aveeno which was $4.54 (expensive but so worth it) (paid $2.54 with both coupons)With taxes I paid: $3.25 saving $9.00 off the total that was $12.25 I know I mostly paid for that damn Aveeno leave me be!"
On another outing, Cricket got these items for FREE!:
This is just an example what you can get when you combine Target coupons and manufacturer's coupons. Always remember that if the coupon doesn't specify a size on it you should be able to use it on travel size and single serving items. Sometimes you get a cashier that doesn't want to take the coupon, if so don't get the item and hang on to that coupon. Target's company policy is to accept the coupon, and I've seen posts on other blogs about contacting Guest Relations if you have any trouble. I will get that number for everyone ASAP!
During September, you can get a FREE membership to Freepeats! It is a forum- similiar to Craigslist that focuses on recycling used baby and maternity items. You can either post to have someone come pick up your items- or you can search to find things you might need. Everything listed is FREE and there are numerous cities around the country that are involved in Freepeats. Just click HERE and you can join for free.