Wednesday, September 11, 2013

How we did all our back to school shopping for about $6!

I finally completed our back-to-school / fall weather shopping this morning... from the comfort of my own home!  I will be honest that as much as I sometimes find grocery shopping "fun", I am not a huge fan of clothing shopping, particularly when it involves chasing a 3 year old around a store!  I love shopping online for clothing because it's just much easier.

I've been planning my online fall clothing shopping for quite some time.  I will be honest that it would be difficult for you to replicate my "deal" without the pre-planning.  However, with that being said, it's never too early to start planning for next fall... or for the holidays... or the next birthday, etc.

Old Navy really is having a great sale on little kid clothes right now so even without the gift cards I used, you can score a really fantastic deal.  I put all of those details below, so keep reading!

Here are some things I did...

Swagbucks is a website that offers lots of ways to earn "swagbucks".  That makes sense right?!  Basically you can earn points or "swagbucks" by doing different things such as searching the internet, printing and redeeming coupons, entering bonus codes they post on facebook, signing up for offers, referring friends, watching advertisements, playing games, etc.  There are tons of ways to earn but I will be honest and say the only way I earn is through internet searches, printing and redeeming coupons, and entering bonus codes.  Just by searching for something through their search engine you have the chance to earn any number of swagbucks... it's totally random.  You can read more about the details on their website or ask me if you have a question but eventually, when you have enough swagbucks, you can redeem them for things.  Over the course of the last several months I redeemed swagbucks for two $10 Old Navy gift cards in preparation for my fall shopping.  You can sign up for swagbucks here.

Mypoints is a website similar to swagbucks.  It works along the same general premise although I don't believe they do internet searches.  I think you can complete surveys, invite friends, etc.  I earn all of my points on this site through BzzAgent.  You can read more about BzzAgent here, but in short, they are a company that sends me free stuff to try and all they ask is that I talk to other people about the product.  There are no strings attached except that they ask me to report back on my conversations (super easy) or post pictures of enjoying the product, etc.  Let me know if you'd like me to send you an invite or you can sign up through their website here.  For each task I complete they award me with points on Mypoints.  I redeemed those points for a $25 Old Navy gift card.  You can sign up for Mypoints here.

So far, that's $45 in completely free money.  FREE MONEY!  

I ordered 3 pairs of pants, 3 shirts, 1 sweatshirt, and 1 pair of pajamas from Old Navy online.  I took advantage of their 30% off sale, a 20% off coupon code they emailed me today (thank goodness I waited until the last day because yesterday it was only 15%!!), free shipping for spending $50 before the coupons, $45 in gift cards I earned totally free, and paid $6.52 out of pocket.  I will get 2% back through Ebates which isn't a lot but every little bit counts.  You should not ever shop online without using Ebates because again, free money, is free money... take advantage of it!  You can read about Ebates here.

Even if you don't have any swagbucks or mypoints saved up, Old Navy is really having a great sale on little kiddo clothing right now - 30% off everything and then 20% off everything with coupon code ONEXTRA20.  Today is the last day of the sale and coupon so shop now!  And remember, 2% back through Ebates!

Please don't ever believe that paying full price is the only way... there are so many ways to save!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

FYI - I love my countertop compost pail!

Do you compost your leftover table scraps?  My husband got us into composting a couple of years ago.    We purchased a large outdoor compost bin where we could dump all of our vegetable and fruit scraps, leaves, grass clippings, egg shells, coffee grounds, egg cartons, chicken poop, etc.  When the composting process was complete, we had free potting soil which grew us some gigantic sunflowers (among other things, but the sunflowers really were huge)!  In a nutshell, when you put all of your scraps in the compost bin, it decomposes, mixes all together, and comes out as a nutrient filled fertilizer.  It reduces waste in a sanitary way and gives back to the environment as the cycle of healthy soil creation goes on and on and on!  You can do a google search and read a million articles on the ins and outs of composting and its benefits.  I didn't take a whole lot of time researching it, I just followed along and collected in a bowl on the counter everything that my husband told me was compostable and he would dump it in the bin.  

I quickly realized a problem however... we started to get fruit flies all over the kitchen if we didn't dump it right away!  I tried storing in a plastic bag instead but the problem persisted.  I tried a concoction of apple cider vinegar and dish soap as a fruit fly trap and I thought this solved my problem.  (It really is a good home remedy... watch for a blog post on that!)

But then... we were given a gift of a countertop compost pail.  I never knew such a thing existed!  But I have now realized that EVERYone should know this exists!  I use it and love it every day and it occurred to me that I should share my love so others don't miss out!  This little gem sits right on the counter and when I peel a cucumber (fresh from our compost fortified garden!) I dump the peel right in there.  Again, google will give you lists of what can and cannot be composted.  But basically, all of our waste that is compostable goes into that bin where it starts its decomposition while it waits for my husband to bring it outside to the big bin... without smelling up my kitchen or attracting fruit flies!  This has been such a great addition to our kitchen.  I would recommend it to anyone!

I'm not sure where the pail we have was purchased, but it can be found on amazon (link below).  I was surprised to see some poor reviews on there!  We haven't had any issues with rust or bad odors (unless you leave the cover off... but I would expect this given that it's storing decomposing materials).  But I saw lots of other compost bins on there as well if you don't want to take your chances on this one.

If you're looking to add some "green" to your living, save on next years gardening supplies, or avoid fruit flies, don't delay!  This is a great product!


Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to
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