Thursday, March 12, 2015
Sunday, March 8, 2015
Thursday, March 5, 2015
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Sell stuff. We all have stuff we don't need or want right? Why not sell it? One persons junk is a another persons treasure. There are several ways you can do this....
(fees are a little high but still worth it) I've been using ebay for years. I once paid for our family vacation with just my ebay money) The key to ebay is take gretat pics, write an attention grabbing description and be a fast shipper. One thing I like about ebay is you have instant access to the cash when you make a sell through paypal
Do you have a knack for handi crafts? Do you sew, knit or paint? Why not sell your items on etsy? This is the ebay of handmade items. You can always find unique items in here and this is a very popular site.
Craigslist....I use this website all the time. Love it. You can buy or sell with no fees attached. Always check the free section on this website. Sometimes you can get something free that you can turn into cash. Have a knack for design? Re paint furniture and make a killing. People love unique items...the weirder the better. Make it your own.
Love to write? Start a blog, write an ebook, write article's for magazines. Do freelance writing through freelancer.com, odesk or elance. You can also use these websites for other areas of freelance work. I have personally used these websites for freelance writing and virtual assisting assignments.
Lots of companies now hire work at home agents...some companies I know of 1(800) flowers, delta, united, west co.
Hope these tips help. More ideas to come
Now as a single parent, there are even more challenges financially so I had to give my finances a kick in the pants, and myself. Lol Here's what I had to do to cut my budget in half.....
Determine what is your main expense? For most of us it's housing.
This is usually something non-negotiable. It's a fixed monthly expense. There are some ways around this expense though. Look into housing assistance programs in your area. As a single mom I now qualify for assistance with this. Call your local social service agencies. If one says no, there may be another, don't give up. Ask questions, tell them your story, people are mostly good and willing to help if you are just friendly and polite. If you don't qualify for any kind of assistance there are other options.
Get a roommate and split expenses in half. Move in with mom and dad or a brother or sister. Also, another option is to buy, it may actually be cheaper to buy than rent...talk to a mortgage broker or do a rent vs. Buy comparison
Rent $800 ( cut in half) $400 with these tips
Ok, going down the list....
Most of us have a car payment, this is another fixed expense (I don't have this one). I got a car from my friend Sarah (thank you girl, love ya). I will also be looking for another one that will be purchased with tax money (try to pay cash for a car if you can...payment monthly zero)
You can try to refinance your loan to lower your payment (this may lead to more installments, but less monthly expense)
You could take out a personal loan with a lower interest rate and pay the car off.
Let's say your payment is $300 you could reduce it to $150 buy doing this.
Next on the list.....utilities
This is usually somewhat of a fixed expense. Ways to reduce this expense...
Barter...for example, my neighbor and I share internet I use her internet and she uses my garbage service. A win/win scenario. We both save monthly about $50 or so monthly. My internet bill is a whopping 0.
I don't have cable but I watch movies and use Netflix steaming which is awesome and I don't even miss cable or the $150 bill that follows. I do have a pg&e bill every month but there are even more ways to reduce this. If you qualify there is a program called CARES that saves you a portion of your monthly bill. There's also a program called HEEP, its an energy assistance program that will help with your bill.
Moving right along.....
More flexible expenses
Groceries....this is my favorite one because this is my most flexible monthly expense. If you have a good panty stock you really can get creative with this one. You can use coupons (see my kindle ebook for sale on amazon to get started). If you aren't into that just meal plan around the weekly ad at your favorite grocery store. Buy produce that's in season, try cutting some meat out of your meals. You can still eat a balanced meal with other protein. Eggs for example, are so cheap and versatile.
This is my weekness. I love clothes. But I refuse....absolutely refuse, to pay retail prices. You will not see me in Macy's. Sorry Macy's you have some cute stuff but I can't see spending $50 on a shirt when I can go to a consignment store and buy the whole outfit and shoes for $50. I always dress nice and my kids always have nice name brand clothing. There are several ways I do this...
Thrift stores (ask questions a lot of times these stores have bag days or half of days doesn't hurt to ask)
Consignment stores....I love stores that take items for store credit. This is a lifesaver when you have kids...they outgrow their stuff so fast.My son is four but as tall as a six year old. These stores always have like new items. No one will know you bought it used.
Garage sales...super cheap clothing and household items
Rummage sales....went to a church on (the best ones) today. Go on the last day of the sale for the best deals usually a dollar or two a bag
Friends and family....love the hand-me-downs. With two boys I pass all of my four year olds clothing to his lil brother then after he outgrows them we pass them on to friends or family or trade them.
Other expenses...credit cards.
This is a tough one. Best tip. Don't use them. If you can't afford to pay cash for something....you can't afford it. Sorry. I know easier said than done. If you have a credit card balance try consolidating to one card. A lot of companies like Capital One will have the zero interest for balance transfers...take advantage of that. When the offer runs out transfer to another zero interest card. Keep doing this until its paid off.
Consolidate, apply for a forbearance, the main thing with student loan companies is communication...they are there to help. These to me are good debt. Student loans are one the lowest interest loans of there. Not that I would encourage taking out student loans but if you want an education and would otherwise be destined to a life of flipping burgers, this is your best option. And your credit score doesnt matter since it is backed by the goverment.
This is a tricky one. Most things that are fun cost money. But you can still have fun on a budget.
Utilize your local library...you can rent movies, cds, books, use the internet....free.
Redbox...movie night? Sign up for free redbox movie codes
Parks...pack a picnic lunch and have a park day with the kiddos. Bring some skates, kites, jump ropes, tennis rackets. Take advantage of the park.
Take a hike...haha...yes litetally. I love to explore my local area. I live in beautiful Northern California, an area rich in recreational opportunities. We have Shasta Lake, Whiskeytown, endless camping, hiking and adventures to take advantage of.
Summertime fun in the park...in my area during the summer there are family movies in the park one night a week..there are also Friday concerts in the park. Check your local newspaper and entertainment magazines for info on free local events.
Hope these tips helped trim your monthly budget. I will be posting more about budgeting and makign money at home. Stay tuned.
Friday, January 16, 2015
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Saturday, November 8, 2014
Sunday, June 15, 2014
Don't forget about your furry friends this summer. In my area the heat is relentless. Our temp in july has reached 118 degrees a time or two. Hopefully if you live in an area that's this hot you have your pets inside. Here are some ways to help your pets stay comfortable in the midst of the scorching summer heat.
Take big ziplock plastic bowls and fill them with water, freeze and you now have ice blocks to put in your pets water dish. If your pets are outside make sure their water is in the shade and they also have shade.
If you have pets like rabbits they are extra sensitive to high temps. To keep them cool take a towel and drape it over their cage. Run the hose over it several times a day to keep them cool. I had rabbits growing up and we did this in the summer to keep them cool. You can also put ice blocks (see above) on top of the towel on their cage to keep them cool. Always make sure they have access to water, food pellets and they love to crunch on veges like, lettuce and carrots.
Don't walk your dog in the middle of the day. Do it early in the morning or evening. The pads of their feet can be sensitive to hot asfault. The pads can even burn. A dog has tougher feet than humans but even their feet cant take the heat. If the temp outside is over 100 degrees you might not realize this but roads can be 40 to 60 degrees hotter than the air temperature. Which is hot enough to cook an egg so you can imagine how hot that would be to a dogs poor paws. Vets even summer have to deal with dogs coming in with burnt paws because their owners didnt realize hot hot pavement can get.
Hope these tips helped. Have a fun summer!
Thursday, March 20, 2014
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Here's a link to my inspiration for this post....thank you Sarah Tuttle-Singer
Thursday, February 6, 2014
Monday, February 3, 2014
Saturday, February 1, 2014
Head on over to hanes.com and scroll through their clearance section. Bras for $2.99 tshirts $3.99 and less. Theres some really cute styles too, even dresses that I didnt realize Hanes carried. They are not just all about tshirts.
Thursday, January 30, 2014
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Monday, January 27, 2014
HOT DiGiorno Coupon Deals! Super cheap @Target and free 2 liter
Get ready for the big game! Head over to coupons.com and print the Digorno coupon. Buy two get one free. At Target they are 2/$9....so 3 a piece plus free soda. Oh, also there is a cartwheel coupon on this one too. Be sure to download this app to your phone if you are a Target shopper. Gotta love Target. My local Target was remodeled not too long ago and it really wasn't ever a place I would by food items...now with a huge grocery item selection you can really save big buy matching target coupons with manufactuers coupons on top of a sale and cart wheel app for Huge savings!
Sunday newpaper (smart source, redplum and at the end of the month procter and gamble inserts)
Cvs beauty book
Better Homes and Gardens
just to name a few
At the grocery store
Safeway has e coupons you can load to your card or clip the ones in the weekly ad
Albertsons store coupons >Winco has manufacturers coupons sometimes as doea walmart
Target printable and moblie ones like cartwheel app.
Kmart store coupons and they will double manufacturers ones up to a dollar
Also, never throw out junkmail, look through it for coupons first. There are usually good ones for arbys, mcdonalds, hometown, burger king and sometimes I see the $10 off of $50 at foodmaxx (food4less)
oh, and also if you are a costco member you will receive monthly coupons
Walgreens has coupon booklets
Cvs has printables from their coupon machine, you can scan up to three times for more coupons
Riteaid has coupon booklets sometimes and their video values coupons you can watch to get coupons
You can sign up for manufactuers coupons just like all your favorite brands on facebook and watch for special offers
You can print them online from coupons.com, smartsource.com, redplum.com, or directly from manufacturers websites
Sign up for coupons from your favorite chain restaurants just look at the bottom of their website to sign up. I get coupon alerts via email all the time for bogo lunch or dinner specials.
Look one packages for special offers and coupons. There was one I kept seeing on the Ihop breakfast bowls a while back i bought a bunch of these with coupons so they were only about $1.11 each then on each one there was a $1 coupon inside. So I basically bought a bunch for .12 each. That is definitely my stock up price.
Look for peelies on packages
Be on the look out for ones next to new products at the store
Order them from a coupon clipping service when you find a good deal on something and you would like to stock up. @.10 each
Follow coupon blogs like this one ;-)....going to be making it more functional in the coming months so its easier to navigate.
Some of my fav blogs are hip2save, fabulouslyfrugal, raininghotcoupons, coupondivas and the krazy coupon lady.
As you can see there is really a plethora of coupons out there.
fyi you can match store coupons with manufacturers coupons fof the sweetest coupon deals. Think Target, cvs, walgreens.
Sunday, January 26, 2014
With two boys (three if you count my husband) and two dogs(also boys, yep I'm very out numbered) there are always messes to clean up. If you're like me you love your swiffer for quick clean ups but hate all the things you have to buy for them contantly.
Here are some easy tips to help you save on these cleaning products....
Make your own reusable, washable cloths, super easy about two mins to make one.
Just take a peice of fabric (you can use an old tshirt or sweatshirt, or even scarf) fold in half (this will give you 4 pieces if you use a shirt which will make two reusable cloths) trace around swiffer mop head, cut out with a one in. seam allowance. Lay two peices together and sew all four sides. Cut a hole about 4 in in middle and turn inside out. Voila...super easy swiffer cloths.
Ok, so maybe you have a wet jet swiffer and you are buying the cleaning liquid like crazy (especially if you have a lil one that likes to help, or shall we say waste) then this will help you save.
Make your wet jet container reusable. Bet you didn't know that was possible (sorry swiffer company).
Take the container and run the top under super hot water for a few mins to loosen, should come right off...refill with dish soap and water) you're good to go! Your welcome.
Saturday, January 25, 2014
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Thursday, January 16, 2014
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
This shopping trip was from last week and I keep forgeting to post, so here it goes. In the last p&g insert (usually the last sunday of the month) there were coupons for $3 off haircolor and $2 for the shampoo and conditioner. Had two of each.
Total spent after coupons amd sell for everything after coupons and sales $20 saved $39. Total would have been $59 and change. The cashier was floored. $aved about 75 percent so not a bad shopping trip.
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Is one of your new years resolutions to save more? If it is, here are some creative ways to save for a rainy day, that vacation your dreaming about, your next big purchase.
$ Get a water bottle! No, not that kind. A 5 gallon water cooler bottle. If you don't have access to one you could ask someone who has a water cooler, get one at work ( ask first), or purchase one at the a store like Winco, for example.
At the end of everyday dump in all of your loose change. This is like a savings account, but its a way to trick yourself into saving. When the bottle is full take it to your bank and cash out. Even if you just put all pennies in the bottle you would have upwards of $300 when the bottle is full. If you put in all your change you would have a pretty substanial amount of money to work with
)...more than enough for a nice getaway, new furniture, to pay off debt or whatever you are saving for...( mine is half full as I'm writing this)
Thursday, January 9, 2014
Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Tuesday, January 7, 2014
Monday, December 30, 2013
Not even sure how many people follow this blog anymore considering I have been on a bit of a hiatus. I want to let you know who ever you are that are still with me. I had a c section July 19th, 2013 and had some complications, in between, dr. Visits, trying two keep up with two little boys under 3, working on my B.A, and writing something had to give, which was unfortunately this blog. Anyhow, I'm back, with a new perspective and some new ideas.
One thing on my to do list for the new year. Get organized. I thought this was a good way to do that while saving money and that oh so precious thing we all would like more of....time.
So today I spent a few hours cooking make ahead meals. Lately I've realized we spend way too much on convenience foods, not only fast food, but packaged food. This can add up fast. Especially with two little ones.
Here's a way to cut down on your grocery budget. Try to avoid prepared meals and produce. You can prepare it youself for way less.
This took about 3 hours but I felt a sense of accomplishment. Well I cleaned my freezer too I can count that too right?
First I did a batch of oatmeal, (which is pretty much pennies a serving) just plain old fashioned oats. Added Brown sugar, butter, milk, and raisins to stir in. I only made 4 bowls since I might be the only one eating it besides my lil guy. My husband and oldest are picky and only want eggs and bacon or sausage for breakfast.
Then I made 14 breakfast burritos with egg, cheese, hashbrowns and sausage scramble. I figured this would be about .50 a piece to make from scratch.
The night before I made a white bean and ham soup and froze for individual lunches. About .75 a serving. Froze that in four containers.
Then I made pancakes and french toast. Made a double batch of both for about 10 servings of each. Total cost per serving abt .50.
That night for dinner I made a mexican casserole. Froze the rest in individual containers for lunches. Abt .75 a serving.
By taking a little time out of each week, or even month you can do make ahead meals and avoid fast food and eating out. Your budget will thank u.
You could save about $100-200 a month just meal planning and thinking ahead. Or just make a double batch of whatever your're cooking for dinner and freeze the other half could save you time and money.
This has been so helpful for me lately with a 5 month old and a three year old that have me going non stop.
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