Ria's Thrifty T-Shirt Quilt

Saturday, October 31, 2009

After collecting enough t-shirts of sentimental value, as well as many hours put in at the sewing machine, my daughter, Ria, has finally completed her second t-shirt quilt.

If anyone has questions about her quilt or would like their own, please email us.

Travel Budget Tips For Sleeping Cheap

Friday, October 30, 2009

Submitted by: Brad Alexzander

When the global economy takes a downturn, learn a few tricks to stretch your travel budget.

If your Dollar or Euro doesn't seem like it goes as far, should you just forget traveling? We don't think so. Travel gives you a boost. You just have to travel a little smarter. You might cut a few corners so you can eat and sleep cheaper, but you can still have a great trip. How can you travel more frugally?

To stretch your travel budget in Europe, stay in a bed-and-breakfast. It will probably cost you less than even the cheapest hotel in town. You'll get a friendly host who can probably tell you where to eat great food for less, and the only downside is you might be a ten minute walk from the center of town.

If you can't find a convenient bed-and-breakfast, stay in a hotel with fewer stars. This will be your cheaper option in the U.S. If you check them out before you take the room, you can get a real bargain.... they may have a lowly one or two stars only because they don't have a restaurant, or an elevator. Some small family run places can be as cozy and friendly as a bed-and-breakfast.

If you're going to stay in a city for a week or more, consider a short-term apartment rental. They have small kitchens, so you can shop at local stores and eat in, saving on restaurant meals. They are often no more than a moderate priced hotel room. In the U.S. you can prepare meals in your room if you get a motel with a kitchenette.

Negotiate with hotels. Room rates generally follow the ecomony. If economies around the world are sinking... so are room rates. No matter if it's a bed and breakfast, a cheap hotel or one with more stars, don't accept the first price they quote you.

Ask if there are any discounts or if it will be cheaper if you stay more nights. This works especially well if you are at their door, and they are not full for the night. They want to fill that room, and they might as well entice you with a good deal.

Don't succumb to a nightcap from the minibar. Snacks and drinks are always more expensive from the minibar. If you think you might have the midnight munchies, stop at a convenience store or a local shop and pick up a few items.

If you're really counting your pennies, doing your laundry in the hotel sink is a great way to stretch your travel budget. Hotel laundry services can be expensive. Some motels in the U.S. have coin operated washers and driers on the premises. Who wants to spend time in a laundromat when you could be sightseeing?

If your hotel doesn't include breakfast in the price of the room, you will probably save money venturing out to a local corner cafe rather than paying the price for the hotel breakfast buffet.

If you watch the way you eat and drink, and you're smart about where you sleep, you can stretch your travel budget, so you don't have to stay too close to home.

Energy and Money Saving Techniques From the Depression

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Submited by: Susan O

My parents were both born immediately following the depression. A lot of the energy saving techniques that they insisted on while we were growing up seemed silly to me at the time, but now they make perfect sense. The methods they used to save money also save energy and help us reduce our carbon footprint.

You may already be doing some of these money saving things, or you may not have to worry about saving money. If not, think about saving the planet. The amount of carbon emissions that we, particularly Americans, are putting into our atmosphere is harming our planet and contributing to global warming.

If you are newly aware of the danger to our planet, or are a new homeowner that needs to save money, try the following tips to help reduce your budget and carbon footprint at the same time.

- Turn off the lights when you leave the room, even for a few minutes.

- Turn down the heat in rooms you are not using.

- If you have central heat, put on a sweater and reduce the thermostat by one or two degrees, even one degree will save you money. Raise it in the summer to save on air conditioning costs.

- Use the sun to heat whenever possible by opening drapes during the day and closing them at night to prevent heat loss.

- Seal drafty windows and doors, even if you have to use plastic for the windows and a rag rug at the bottom of the door, it will make a difference.

- Clean baseboard heaters, radiators, registers, and air filters often.

- Take shorter showers, heating water is one of the largest energy requirements of most houses.

- Take showers not baths. Showers use less water. Less hot water means saving energy.

- Don't hold the refrigerator or freezer door open.

- Match the pot size to the eye on the stove.

- Use a pressure cooker it takes less time and uses less energy.

- Don't open the oven door when cooking, you lose about 50 degrees every time you open the door.

- Wash your clothes in cold water.

- Hang your clothes to dry.

- Rake, don't blow leaves, the exercise will do you good.

Thanks to our parents and grandparents, we know a lot of the things we need to do to help save our planet. Getting back in the habit is another thing. But the alternatives are unthinkable. If we don't act now, we may be in severe trouble down the road.

About the Author: I have been in education for many years, from technical instruction in telecommunications to high school math. Currently, I am trying my hand at internet marketing. I love learning and trying new things.

Erika's Halloween Costume

Erika headed off to her Halloween dance tonight and was quite proud of the Lego costume Gerry made for her.
Check out the photos!

Visit Disney Family Fun to make your own this Halloween.

*** Update- Erika just let me know that she won for "Most Creative Costume".

Halloween Events Across Canada

Readers Digest has put together a great Canadian list of places across Canada that will be hosting Halloween events.Check them out if you live in Canada.

Free Advertising Methods That Get Results

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Free Advertising Ideas - 7 Free Advertising Methods That Get Results

Free advertising is something that everyone wants, but struggles to get. The best part about getting it for free is that you are benefiting from it without making an initial investment. Regardless, free methods still require an initial investment of our time.

Below are the seven best free advertising ideas without investing too much of your time. Each one is valuable on it's own but when you use them all your leverage suddenly becomes irresistible.

Free Advertising Ideas

#1 Free Classified Adds are a great way to get free advertising without investing much of your time. Sites such as Kijii as well as Craig's List are great ways in which you can promote your business for no cost. The only bad part about it is that your posts will disappear over time. This will require a little bit of extra time each week, but it is well worth it since it is a free method of advertising.

#2 Posting On Forums is a sensible way to advertise for your business. You should put a link to your business in your signature file. This will help you to promote your business without spamming the forums. You must realize that no one wants to see you spamming a forum with tons of posts advertising for your business.

Most forums have rules stating that you can not advertise for your website. The best way to advertise is through your signature file while you make quality posts that contribute to the overall community. By making quality posts, you can establish a name for yourself in your community and get people to visit your website.

#3 Submitting Articles is excellent way of getting long term free advertising. This idea for free advertising can be slightly slower than other methods, but it is highly effective. This method of advertising involves you writing articles on subjects that are relvants to topics on your website. You can then submit these articles to directories such as Ezine articles.

The way that you can advertise your website through these articles is by putting a link to your website in the resource box. This will help you to increase traffic to your website and reach a wider audience.

#4 Using Free Directory Systems - There are tons of free directories out there for people to post their website URL on. The best way to find directories are to search for free directories that are free and specific to your niche on a search engine. Even if you get non-reciprocal links you will still raise your search engine ratings significantly.

#5 Using Many Reciprocal Links - Reciprocal links are the most valuable links out there because they are stronger than non-reciprocal links. They are extremely beneficial for generating traffic and they are usually free. The first part of getting reciprocal links is to find other websites within your niche to link with.

After you find these websites, you should email them and suggest that you post each others links on each others websites. At the same time, it is important that you monitor these links on a consistent basis. If you put a link to a site that is no longer active it will lower your rank on the search engines. Reciprocal links are perhaps one of the best ways that you can raise your ranking on search engines.

#6 Using Opt-In Emails - Opt-in emails are another excellent idea for free advertising and help bring in new customers. Having an email list which people can choose to join when visiting can help you build a great email list. You can ask people if they want to join when they visit your site so that you can give them free information on a subject. Alternatively, you can offer them a chance to join the mailing list upon purchase of a product. The great thing about an opt-in email list is that it allows you to send emails to a group of people that are already interested in our website.

#7 SEO Optimization - Being ranked high on search engines is perhaps the most important part of having a successful business. The best way to raise your rank on search engines is through SEO optimization. It is important to optimize your website by putting keywords on your website that are specific to your niche. Maximizing your search engine ranking is the most important part of running a successful and profitable website.

Want to know to get the best free advertising ideas online? Learn the best free advertising methods to use for your internet home business by grabbing a PortalFeeder membership and supercharge your online success starting today!
Submitted By: Dean Caporella

Today's Ramblings

I had meant to write earlier today but things just got hectic.Been busy with trying to get the book "out there".
Everybody seems to want a cut and it really leaves you with very little afterwards.My main goal is to try to get listed with but need a US bank account in order for them to allow me in.Opened one and just waiting to see if I will be approved- so that will be another week delay for all the paperwork as well to come in the mail.
We were suppose to go to the first parents meeting for Erika's grad tonight, but never made it. It's Gerry's birthday tommorow and we all went out for an earlier birthday supper tonight. He had a free $20.99 meal entree coupon and  we all had water and no dessert. The meal for the 4 of us was only $36 plus the tip- so I thought we did good.Especially since we were at a classier restaurant.
Gerry helped Erika work on her Halloween costume tonight as well, so I hope to have pictures for you all soon...she will dress up tommorow for school and her dance tommorow night.Our whole house smells like spray paint though, as the costume was sprayed indoors. What is she going to be? You'll have to wait and see.

Saving Money On Furniture

Buying furniture can be very expensive. After all, next to your house and your car, furniture is one of the priciest things in your home. So any time you can save money, you should! Here are some tips to buying furniture inexpensively.

Look in the Yellow Pages for a furniture wholesaler or a liquidation or discount store. Often, their furniture is as good as the kind you will get in a retail outlet, but usually cheaper because of a minor flaw (and usually you won't notice that flaw!).

You can also buy from a furniture warehouse where the salespeople are paid by commission. Using a number of purchasing tactics you can often get it at a better deal. For example, if you buy a couch, but would really like to own a couch and a chair, ask if you could get a deal if you buy both.

Another good way to save money when you're buying furniture is to go in toward the end of the month. Most retail companies operate on a month by month basis, measuring sales, running promotions, and introducing or winding up furniture lines on a monthly basis. At the end of the month, furniture companies may be closing out a line of furniture they are no longer looking to stock. They may be willing to give you a great deal if it's the last one in the store and they don't want it taking up any more room. As well, since salespeople are often paid by commission or given sales bonuses, at the end of the month they may be looking to put themselves over the top to be eligible for a reward or to make enough money to pay for the mortgage. You can take advantage of this eagerness to make a sale by showing that you want to buy, but you need a deal.

Many large furniture warehouse companies offer an in-store credit card and will give you a discount if you apply for the card when you purchase their furniture. Use this to your advantage: apply for the card, buy the furniture, get a discount, and pay off the card the next day with the money you're going to spend in your furniture anyway.

Another money-saving option is to buy used furniture and get it reupholstered or refinished by a carpenter. Often, the cost of the furniture plus the finishing will still be cheaper than buying new furniture, and you may even be happier with the result since you are able to be more specific in the kind of furniture you're looking for.

Submitted By :Jeff Lakie

Jeff Lakie is the founder of Furniture Information a website providing information on Furniture

Cleaning Up

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Are you an every day vacummer? I am ...especially since we have a dog- and I am a bit of an over tidier Erika tells me. She says: "Mom, your always cleaning".
We broke down this past weekend and bought a new vacumm. I knew mine was falling apart and my daughter bugged me about having to push it with two hands at times, because it was always seeming to get stuck in the rug. Gerry tried cleaning it up from underneath and greasing it too-and it was fine for a bit.
Part of the plastic where you tie the cord up to was broken too and a few times I had sliced my hand on it's sharp edge.I suppose it was time for a new one.
I feel like a kid with a new toy though.It glides  across the carpet and I love it!
We got this one on sale at Canadian Tire for $99- a Bissell-and we also got a $10 gift card for spending over $50 that day.

Gerry's going to keep the old one - he said he may be able to revamp it into more of an outdoor vacumm for the vehicles. Less to move around than the shop vac we have that is awkward and heavy.

Organizing a Few Things for a Spooktacular Halloween!

Organizing a Few Things for a Spooktacular Halloween!

Author: Get Buttoned Up

Don't let Halloween sneak up on you without doing anything to set the stage. You can organize few simple things with minimum effort to create a spooktacular evening. Below are ten ideas to get you started.

1. Make an Event Out of Pumpkin Picking

Yes, you can pick up a pumpkin at the local supermarket - and that's great if you're in a bind. But it's much more fun if you can make an event of it. Look online for a pumpkin patch event in your area, or search for a nearby orchard offering pumpkin picking, hay rides and apple cider. Organize a date to go with good friends and you'll enjoy it that much more.

2. Have Pumpkin Carving Contest

Invite good friends and neighbors over the weekend before Halloween to see who can carve the most interesting, or scariest, or funniest jack-o-lantern. If small kids will be attending, be sure to have mini pumpkins and magic markers on hand so that they can participate too.

3. Add a Smile to the Serving Table

If you're thinking of throwing a party this year, do something a little different and use small pumpkins as serving dishes. Hollow them out and carve a jagged edge in the top. Put saran wrap on the inside and voila - it's a bowl! If you need to keep something cool, place a small plastic bag of ice in the bottom.

4. Set a Spooky Atmosphere With a Little Dry Ice

Make trick-or-treaters earn their stripes with a little spooky fog coming out of your jack-o-lantern made with dry ice. Fill a large cup or glass about half full with hot water and mix in a cup of salt and place it inside the pumpkin. Wearing gloves (very important - dry ice can cause instant frostbite), drop two or three large pieces of dry ice into the can of water. Replace the top of the pumpkin.

5. Get the Candle Effects Without the Fire Hazard

If you're not comfortable having a candle in your jack-o-lantern, get the next best thing. The "Artificial Candle Pumpkin Light" from flickers just like a real candle but without the danger of a real flame.

6. Light Up the Night

If you're looking for something pretty simple and yet different and eerie, try lighting up the sky around your house with glow sticks. Tie small glow sticks to string attached to helium balloons and let them sail over your house or hover in the trees. Make sure to tie off the strings to something solid so they don't get away.

7. Get a Spooky Manicure

It's amazing what a few bottles of nail polish can do to help you get in the spirit. Women and girls can sport basic orange nails or try a fancier look with orange and black stripes. Men and boys can show their dark side with a black or brown manicure.

8. Be Fun AND Safe

If you have children that are going to be walking in the streets trick-or-treating, make sure they are easy to see at night. Tie or sew glow-sticks to your child's costume so they can be seen more easily in the dark. Alternatively, use a little reflective tape. In addition, give them a flashlight to take with them.

9. Don't Leave Your Pet Out of the Fun

There are lots of excellent costumes out there for Fido and Felix. If your pet is the calm type, try dressing her up for Halloween! If you have a nervous pet, be sure to put him in a back bedroom or other quiet spot in the house if you expect to get a lot of trick-or-treaters. The constant stream of visitors can spook some pets.

10. Play Hide the Pumpkin

If you're looking for a simple, but fun, Halloween game, try "hide the pumpkin." All you need is a bunch of mini pumpkins, which you can usually get at your local grocery store around this time of year. Then hide them all over the house or in the yard and the person who finds the most wins a prize!

About the Author: Buttoned Up, inc. is dedicated to helping stretched & stressed women get themselves organized (along with everybody else they're responsible for!). Co-founders Alicia Rockmore and Sarah Welch team up with a group of Gurus to give you tips and products for all your messy, stressed needs and introduce you to “imperfect organization.” Visit us at see what Guru matches your style and find info on Everyday Life, Life Essentials and Life Events.

Stretching the One Income Dollar-It's Here!

Monday, October 26, 2009

This book is currently available at cost for $15- which includes shipping.
Please send $10 pay pal to:

Am Back With Old Look and the Book

I decided I didn't like the look of the new site I had put together- it was a bit unpersonal and I didn't care for it much. I hope you like the old site back again- and I welcome your comments.
We were up and down a few times with the site due to domain changing around, but should be fine now.
On another note, the book is out-and I am just looking for a way to offer it for sale- so as soon as I get that worked out, I will be posting.
Thank you for your patience.

Making Cheap Substitutes

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Some recipes call for ingrediants we don't have on hand, or aren't a very common ingrediant we may find in our cupboards. I usually deal with this in one of two ways.
First I may pick up just what I need, at our bulk bin.They are very inexpensive should I need 1/2 cup of this or a quarter cup of that, and I don't have to buy a full size package of something I may never use again.
I also may substitute. I made these White Chocolate cookies substituting the butter for margarine.I didn't have butter and it costs more than margarine. I also substituted out the macadamia nuts and used almond pieces instead-cheaper again than the macadamia nut.For the white chocolate chunks I use white chipits that mom gave me,( thanks mom- and used half a bag ).
I have also on occassion substituted such things as peanuts for walnuts, or did without in a recipe.
So you can see how substituting can be a cheaper alternative for any recipe.
What substitutes have you used to save $$?

Pennies, Nickels, Dimes and Quarters

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Do you save change? We don't carry alot of cash to begin with.But the odd time we will have some change, and have 2 containers . One is loonies and toonies for home renos.We have a sealed box with a slit in it and and have glued the lid shut.Once a year, we open it up and use it towards something we are renovating at the time. This  year it was towards paint and drywall for the hallway.
We also have a container for the mixed stuff-the pennies,nickels, dimes, and quarters.Not alot stays saved in there- it's mostly used for picking up a newspaper or  lotto ticket- the small stuff.

You can save towards anything, but it is good to save towards something. You can have a vase, ice cream pail, etc..and have everyone drop their loose change into it. Once a year dump it, count it, and roll it. Use it for something special. If you have enough for a weekend getaway, great!  Make it a family affair on what you are saving towards- get everyone excited about it.Whatever you choose, you will feel good knowing that you "saved" towards it.

"Flip that House"

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

We spent some of today looking at a few houses that are for sale for the taxes. A few empty lots, some junk and maybe 1-2 possibles.It's not a bad deal, if the people don't pay their taxes, and the house goes up for auction.There is money to be made, whether you choose to renovate, or just buy for the taxes and flip it.
The benefits of course to buying a house at a tax sale is of course making thousands of dollars in a short amount of time.
You should make sure that the area you are looking in isn't an area that the real estate may not be good in, or your house may sit longer than you wish for it to.
We haven't decided for sure on this- but are thinking of the idea of it.
Has anyone else bought tax sale properties or are currently flipping houses?

Update: Oct. 14th:
We have decided at this point not to buy at the tax sale- it still is a good idea, but for us at this time, and lack of funds, it's not a good idea.

Yikes-Mailbox Monday on Tuesday

Sorry all- I'm a bit late getting my Mailbox Monday photo up. Was away this weekend and yesterday was Thanksgiving here in Canada, but here it is, better late than never...last weeks Mailbox goodies.
Recieved 2 magazines, address labels, Christmas cards and stickers,free cereal sample,free product coupon for tuna, $5 off coupon from Maple Leaf, free dishwasher soap coupon, ( and with no size limit, I chose the biggest one with bonus Jet Dry), and Gerry got a free Happy Birthday coupon for a local restaurant- good for a $20 free meal this month- ( his birthday is October 29th).
How was your mail last week?

Happy Thanksgiving Canada!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Today is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Happy Thanksgiving to fellow Canadians.We didn't have much of a celebration, as we only returned from being on the road yesterday.We were at Gerry's parent's 60th anniversary- 6 hour drive south of here.
Today's supper was a simple one, just Gerry, me and the girls. Please excuse the lack of posts over the last few days, with me being away. I will try to get on track again soon.
Posting the 2 photos I did take while on the trip-a big swan in Swan River,Manitoba and a buffalo we spotted in a corn field. We were hoping he would stand up but I think  he wanted to think he was hiding from us .

How to Save Money on Hotels

Friday, October 9, 2009

Wow- the cost of staying overnight in some hotels nowadays is crazy! After all, you don't want to own a share of the place, you only want a place to sleep for the night, or two.
My daughter Ria used to work as a night hotel clerk, a few years back in Alberta. While she was over the other day, I picked her brain to ask if she had any money saving tips for my readers.
She proceeded to tell me that haggling was more possible for the room rate, if there weren't others in line.After all, if the guy behind you in line hears your getting your room $25 cheaper than him, he's going to want to same deal.
She also said it really depends on who is working, their mood, and sometimes how good a sweet talker you are as well.She said that they do like to have their rooms all filled by the end of the day, so it is easier to deal later in the day with them on a room rate.
Also being a Priority Club member of the hotel chain is also a good thing.These people are treated better she said and get free room upgrades most of the time.. more perks for being a club member.
Never call the 1-800# when making a reservation-ever! Ria said you have a better chance at getting a better rate by calling the hotel directly.
Also,if you are spending the night in the hotel only for the purpose of sleeping, do you really need a 5 star hotel? Read room reviews on hotel booking sites and stay at a cheap but clean hotel.
Keep in mind what the hotel is also offering- perhaps a free breakfast or free parking.
Ask if they price match with other hotels.
Fill out those comment cards- especially the ones that get mailed in to a head office. The hotels really strive for good customer service and want to keep a good rating.

First Snowfall and a Great Saving

Thursday, October 8, 2009

First snowfall for the year- off and on today. It was raining light snow then hard crunchy snow and
what did come down today has mostly melted ,but there still lingers a bit on the front step and in our rock garden.Of course the steps are icy as well and we will have to get used to that invisible sheet of ice that lays on top.
Has anyone else had snow yet?
Also was out to double coupon day today and was able to buy $34.52 worth of items for $12.02. Unfortunately, our local Pharmasave store only has double coupon day once every 5-6 weeks.

Savings 6 Ways on Your Airfare

If you are planning on a Winter vacation or perhaps time at the family's for Thanksgiving, keep in mind some ways to save with your airfare:
( I used to sell travel).

1.Book your flight early.Don't wait till the last minute. Although there are last minute flight deals, they may not be to where you are travelling to.If you want to base your holiday on where the best airfare rates are to, then this WILL work for you by waiting till the last minute. However, if you have a set place in mind,it's best to plan ahead. Airlines will have x amount of  seats assigned that will get a better rate than others- and once those are gone, then you pay a higher rate.

2.Don't fly during the holidays. If you can help it.These times are generally overpriced as the airlines know people will be travelling then to see family.

3.Check prices on a daily basis. I'm not sure why the airlines constantly change their prices- but they do.When I was selling travel, and I'd find a good rate, it was hard to convince the client to lock in a rate we got and commit to  the price now, with a deposit. The airlines can and will change prices day to day if they wish.

4.Compare prices for different airports. If you can fly into or out of a variety of airports, and just have a different driving range to contend to, it may be worth your while to check the rates of flying out of X airport as opposed to flying out of Y airport.The same goes for dates. If you can fly out on Thursday and that's cheaper, go with Thursday!

5. Compare fares. A good site to try this with is Kayak. You can compare many fares at one time.

Unfortunately, I won't be flying anywhere this winter unless I win a trip! We've used the bigger portion of our vacation money all up for this year, and will have to wait till Gerry's company bonus next year.In which time, Erika has asked to Disneyworld.She has been there a few times before but was too young to remember too much.Now she wants to go for her 18th birthday.( I have over the years won a trip there twice-yes, I know, lucky me!)

Blog Contest from The Contest Queen

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

My friend Carolyn -also know as The Contest Queen- has a new blog contest that she would like to spread the word about so I'd like to help her with that.
Win either a $25 Giant Tiger gift card (Canada only) or a large t-shirt from The Crazy Moose Clothing Co (world-wide).
One comment per person. Closes at 11:59pm ET on Friday October 23rd.

Good luck to all.

4 Simple Ways to Keep Your Weight Down

My sister and I have recently started walking at the ice rink. Alot of people usually walk there once the weather turns colder, but so far, we've only seen one person on both of the days we have gone. The weather HAS gotten colder, and in fact, the wet snow is suppose to start today.It won't be here to stay yet..too early. I know that once all the leaves are off the trees then it will, but we still have alot of leaves on the trees.It's just a sign and let's us know to start preparing ourselves.

I still have a bit of my cold and Erika has missed 3 days school because of hers.

Despite my cold though, I have still been walking and do usually ride the exercise bike in the house.Can't stop because the weather gets bad . I gain weight too easily if I don't try.At times, it can be challenging to lose weight or even maintain, especially once one is older.

Some ways to keep your weight down:
- exercise regularily- at least 20-30 minutes a day.
-don't diet. You restrict yourself too much from what you like. Instead, cut back your portions. Instead of a full sized  chocolate bar, eat one of the minis. Instead of a large supper plate, use a smaller dinner plate.This is what I do- and it works for me. Keep snacks in the house that include healthy eats like fruit, veggies and cheese strings.
-if you do end up cheating, don't be too hard on yourself. Try again next time.
-drink lots of water.Remember you may think you want to eat, but may only be thirsty. If you fill up more on water, you will think less about food.

We watched a bit of  The Biggest Loser last night on tv.I personally thought it was terrible how they made those people push themselves beyond what was comfortable for them.A few that were exercising looked like they were going to die right there.I thought the exercise part of it was a bit extreme. The trainers are thin and fit so it's easy for them, but wrong to push that hard with people that are that out of shape.

We have a 60th wedding anniversary to attend to this weekend out of town for Gerry's parents, so won't be posting this weekend.I have signed up for some mystery shops along the way so will get some free gas, snacks and a meal or two.

Mailbox Mondays

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Corrie over at Centsable Momma puts up a post each week called Mailbox Monday. She posts what she got free in her mailbox that week.
Stretching the One Income Dollar will be joining in with postings every Monday for mailbox goodies for the week, and this will take the place of Your Opinion Counts/Today's Mail/Phone Calls .

The Book is Off to the Printers!

Monday, October 5, 2009

"Stretching the One Income Dollar" is off to the printers! We came to a final  decision on a look for the book cover, and it will be heading to the printers tommorow.
Will keep everyone up to date.

Your Opinion Counts/Today's Mail/Phone Calls

Haven't gotten around to doing some more phone calls to companies...but did have a few samples come in today's mail, including:
Cold FX
Neutrogena acne stress control

and 2 boxes of Kotex samples

Hope your mailbox is looking full- and not with bills!

Please Vote- My Bathroom Needs a New Look

I have entered Home Depot's Fall Makeover Contest - and sure would be nice to win something . It is a voting contest so I'm asking if you all could go to the Home Depot website and vote for my bathroom. I'm on page 40- the bathroom titled:" A Beauty Problem of It's Own."
Please note you will get an email from them, then have to confirm your vote.
Voting can be daily as well, so please bookmark and help me to win. Our bathroom is 20 years old so sure could use the makeover. You can vote daily till November 1st.

Thanks for your votes!

On another note concerning contests, I won a $50 grocery gift card today from Loblaws on behalf of Quaker-Tropicana-Gatorade ..woo hoo!

Saving is Good

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Couponizer® is an organizing and shopping system for coupons and other discounts.This

product is fun to use and will help you save time and money!

Product Features:

The entire 6 piece system includes:

The Couponizer® – 8" x 5¼" booklet with 18 grocery coupon pockets, 4 Non-grocery coupon pockets, 3 gift card/shopper loyalty sleeves, shopping pockets

Shopping List – 20 page tear off list pad with cardboard backing

CoupStacker – Pre-sorting mat color coded to match the system pockets

CoupTracker – 15 page spiral bound list pad with cardboard backing

Scissors – blunt tip

Carrying Bag – clear vinyl zippered bag



Product Benefits:

Enables spending less money at grocery store and other places

Reduce paper clutter associated with coupons

Save time clipping and sorting coupons by category

A fun activity for the whole family

Teaches kids the value of money

Provides a way to track spending to help stay on budget

Compact enough to store in car and carry in purse or diaper bag

Never miss another opportunity to save money and enjoy the brands you love!

Thrifty Yes, But Still Enjoying Life

Most times we cut corners, use coupons, buy on sale or don't shop at all, but we still want to enjoy life. We cut corners so at times we have extra money for other things we enjoy doing- such as travelling.We cut corners so we can also put money away for Christmas, an emergency fund or our savings.
Are we misers or cheapskates? No. We just want to live a fulfilling life doing with less so we can enjoy more.
I enjoy reading the many Things To Do Before You Die lists on the net, and have a few printed out.There are many things we/I have done. We've swam with the dolphins,seen a lunar eclipse, written a book, etc.. Then there are some we wouldn't try- such as bungee jumping or sky diving. The lists if anything, are fun to read.So are we still thrifty? Yes, most times. We're also still enjoying life and if something does happen to cost us some dollars-hey, how often do we do it?

Don't get me wrong. I don't think you should go out and book a cruise because you want to go on a cruise once in your lifetime. The money should come from money you have saved and not on your credit card.Don't miss out too much on life for the sake of being thrifty though.

There I Fixed

Mom had sent me a few pictures from a web site called: There I Fixed It .com.
I thought of this site right away as something that an extreme frugalist would love.
Your own "handiwork" can be submitted here as well.

Ways to Save at the Grocery Store

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Although we can't avoid shopping altogether, there is ways we can save more in the stores.

-Shop with a list . If I didn't have a list and were to just" shop" I would definately spend more than if I did have that list.
-Get a rain check. Sometimes the store doesn't have any left of what you went there for, but if you ask for a rain check, you can get that item for the sale price the next time you return.
-Do the rebates that are offered on products or on store pads. Sometimes that savings can earn you a free product.
-Go in and out of the store as quickly as you can- and go alone. The longer your in the store, the more time your going to have to look around at everything else.
-Shop discount, warehouse and liquidation stores
-Woman's Day also has some great ways to spend less and eat better.

Cold Season Has Arrived + Signs of H1N1

Friday, October 2, 2009

Being a frequent hand washer as well as not working in a closed in office environment, I was surprised to come down with a bad cold. I have been out and about and hear people talking about family members and themselves getting over the flu, as well as hearing people coughing in stores.

Both my daughters work part time in daycares and say some kids have some real bad coughs. There is so much sickness spread in daycares. I never had to have my kids in daycare when I worked when they were younger.I always worked opposite shifts as my ex, and no sitter was required.

Erika now has a sore throat and I can see me having to buy more cough syrup soon with the two of us with our coughs. Picked up more kleenex today too.

I haven't really thought too much about the H1N1 virus, but have been reading about it.It's important to know the signs:
-it will develop within 1-3 days after you are exposed to it
-you will have body aches and feel fatigue
- symptoms also  include headaches, nausea, sore throat, coughing, diarrhea, or even vomiting.You may or may not get all of these
-although there has been some deaths, most cases have been mild

Stay healthy!

For more information- check out Health Canada

Mystery Shopping with Insula Research

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Mystery Shopping with Insula Research is a great way to supplement your

income! I was contacted via email that a job was available about 1.5 hours

away from me. I replied with a proposal for a specific dollar amount that

covered my time and travel and my proposal was quickly and positively

responded to. Also, I was able to plan the trip that fit right into my

schedule. The scheduler was very supportive and answered all of my

questions. I feel she gave 110% to make sure I was comfortable with the

assignment. She even emailed me a list of web links to check for more work

in Canada. Performing the assignment and the on-line reporting could not

have gone smoother. I was so pleased that I emailed the scheduler stating I

loved doing this type of work and if she had any more to let me know!
Check for shops in your area, and sign up for jobs today!

Saving Money This Halloween and Having Fun

My girls are older now, 17 and 23, so I don't have to worry about taking them trick or treating, or Halloween costume buying.When they were little, I used to save Ria's costumes and then as Erika grew, she would wear them. My mom used to at times, buy them costumes that were hand made, that fit over their jackets and attached at the shoulder with velcrow: example: a pumpkin costume, and a bee costume, both with little hats. Halloween is cold here- most times we have snow, so the kids need to keep warm.
I saved their costumes for years, and kept them in bags in the closet. During the year, they would have friends over and play dress up.Once my sister had kids, she often would use them as well, so they were well used.Costumes can be a big expense so trade with other family members, make your own, shop thrift stores for ideas,go shopping for next year's costume the day after Halloween. There are big savings on costumes, candies and decorations.
Reuse all decorations from last year, or if you do buy new: buy during the after Halloween sales of 75% off.
Instead of buying pumpkins, plant your own- all you need are a few seeds.
Watch grocery store ads for deals on Halloween candy- and buy a little bit everytime until Halloween.
Shop the Dollar Stores for Halloween candies, trinkets and treat bags. Sometimes it is cheaper to make up small candy bags than to buy chocolate bars.
Play some Halloween tunes inside or outdoors for a more Halloween type effect. One year there was a house that was playing : "The Monster Mash" outdoors- it played on repeat and could be heard for blocks. I thought that was neat.
What are some ways you save money at Halloween?
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