Feb 222017
 

This post contains affiliate links.

yoga ball get paid

Swagbucks has been a great source of extra money over the past few years.  If you have read my blog for any length of time, I am sure you have picked up on how much I like them.

The flexibility in ways to earn has been the biggest draw for me.  There have been times when I am frankly short on time, and others when I have a lot of time to spend looking around and trying out new things.

Watching video clips is one of the easiest ways for me to earn gift cards by redeeming points, called SB.  Not only can I find clips on subjects that interest me, but I can also learn about new things.  The videos can run while I type up a blog post, fold laundry, do the dishes, or help a child with homework/school work.

Watching videos on my phone makes it even easier and portable. When I find a video I like, it can be saved to my favorites for me to watch again. (This is the easiest and fastest way to find certain videos at some point in the future.)

Modification of several yoga and  Pilates moves are also used in our home for sensory activities and exercise with the kids.  Each kid reacts differently to the movements, which takes trial and error to find the ones that might work best for you.

There are several ways for you to watch video clips to earn SB – via the Swagbucks website and via several apps on your phone. (Even if you are an international user!)  The apps are free to download. 

Below is a list of video I have come across on one app – Sportly.tv. (They were current as of the writing of this post)  You can earn 18 SB per day using this Swagbucks app.

Jack had a blast going through these with me.  Several were stopped so we could both try them.  Again. And Again. And Again.

Sportly.tv

  • Common Meditation Mistakes 2:20
  • How To Do Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 0:51
  • Fitness Through Sensual Dance – Spiderman Move 0:52
  • Weights on Trampoline 1:14
  • Kundalini Yoga – Dyamic Cobra Pose 1:25
  • Olympic Buses Transporting Athletes Gets Lost For Hours 1:04
  • How To Do Crab Walks 0:30
  • Man With Cerebral Palsy Competes in Races With Brother’s Help 1:09
  • How To Do Pilates Neck Pull Exercise 1:50
  • How To Do Standing Shoulder Press 0:50
  • Belly Dancing: Snake Arms 3:22
  • How To Do Lunges 0:54
  • How To Do Yoga Knees to Chest Pose 1:09
  • Circus Exercise: V Ups Exercise 0:45
  • How To Perform Wellness Bridge  0:42
  • How To Perform Egyptian Stretch 0:30
  • Riot Erupts at Wheelchair Basketball Game 1:03
  • How To Do Yoga Standing Forward Fold Pose 0:54
  • Plank To Downward Dog 0:44
  • 70-Year-Old Qualifies for Olympics 1:23
  • Sumo Wrestlers – 10 Amazing Facts 1:24
  • Pilates Swan On The Roller 2:05
  • What is Doga? 1:34
  • Goal of Meditation 1:06
  • Pilates: Thera Band Arms 4:28
  • Pilates Footwork on the Roller 2:20
  • Squats on a Smith Machine with Medicine Ball 0:51
  • How To Do Kettlebell Swing 0:45
  • Pilates: Lower Lift with Magic Circle 4:40
  • Yoga – Revolved Side Angle Pose 1:07
  • Circus Exercises: Tuck on the Trapeze 1:13
  • Overhead Exercise with Dumbbells 0:43
  • Airport Security Confiscates Kids’ Tennis Rackets 1:13
  • Eating Tips Before Running 0:39
  • Belly Dancing: Chest Isolations 2:56
  • How To Do Pilates Open Leg Rocker Exercise 2:12
  • Food Art: Sports Themed Strawberries 2:00
  • Early Swimming For Kids Leads to Better Academic Performance 1:02
  • Strict Diet Guidelines for Chinese 1:04
  • Side to Side Obliques with Medicine Ball 1:05
  • Wheelchair Bodybuilders Inspire Others 1:11
  • How To Do Yoga Fish Pose 1:19
  • How To Do Pilates Teaser Exercise 1:14
  • How To Do Knee Plank Curls 0:42
  • 30 Minute Beach Workout 6:21
  • Yoga – Dancer Pose Easy Variation 0:57
  • Fitness Through Sensual Dance – Thigh High Move 0:51
  • Beach Workout Tips 1:59
  • Russian Olympic Volleyball Coach Commits Suicide 1:03
  • Yoga – Side Plank Intermediate 0:56
  • Advanced Contortion Moves: Lever 0:59
  • Self-Defense Workout: Push Kick 1:30
  • Kundalini Yoga – Dynamic Bow Pose 1:35
  • Pilates Scissors on the Roller 1:48
  • Hula Hoop Upper Body Workout 1:05
  • French Open – 10 Uncommon Facts 1:19
  • Designer Proposes Trampoline Walkway 1:05
  • Pilates Single Leg Stretch on the Roller 1:57
  • How To Do Yoga Triange Pose 0:53
  • Kundalini Yoga – Spinal Rotation 1:34
  • 15 Minute Beach Workout 4:39
  • Fitness Through Sensual Dance – Lotion Motion 1:05
  • How To Perform Bicep Stretch 0:33
  • How To Do Explosive Jump Squat 0:30
  • Circus Exercises: Frog Sequence On The Rope 1:33
  • How To Do Yoga Eagle Pose 1:07
  • How To Perform Neck Rotation Exercise 0:37
  • Yoga – Cow Face Pose Easy Variation 1:40
  • Tai Chi: Strike Ears with Fist 0:59
  • Seated Dumbbell Knee Raise 0:45
  • How To Perform Front Leg Kicks 0:30
  • Pilates Open Leg Rocker on the Roller 2:00
  • How To Do Pilates Spine Twist Exercise 1:40
  • Yoga Side Plank 0:52
  • How To Do Pilates Swimming Exercise 2:15
  • Plank on Bosu 1:16
  • A New Hot Sport Due To Booming Skyscrapers 1:14
  • Tricep Dips with Yoga Ball 0:53
  • How To Do Standing Shoulder Press 0:50
  • 5 Types of Sports in German 0:47
  • How Can Mediation Reduce Stress? 2:27
  • Self-Defense Workout: Bump Escape From A Bear Hug 1:51
  • Yoga – Shoulder Stand 1:11
  • Belly Dancing: Figure 8 2:55
  • Pole Dancing For Fitness 1:27

 

Feb 182017
 

making breakfast exciting again collage

We may not be trapped at home with feet of snow, though part of me really wishes we were, yet it is still winter and the perfect time for warm breakfast foods.

With a lot of changes to our routines coming up, again, I am looking for some quick yet easy things to add to our breakfast rotation on weekdays.  While I could literally eat the same thing for breakfast every day, my kids finally revolted.

Mom, enough.  Can we please have something else?

My kids tend to be carb lovers, yet burn enough calories to need protein with their meals. Especially with breakfast. I have chosen to find new recipes that hopefully lean toward more protein than carbs.

My boys can eat more than me, if they decide they actually like their food.  Actually, they could almost out eat me when they were only 3 or 4, and I am not exactly a light eater.  They are not necessarily picky eaters, but more along the lines of “we finally have a enough to eat that we can have foods we prefer to eat.”  And that is why I am wanting to put dwarf fruit trees in my next garden/yard, along with vegetables and root vegetables.

Having these on hand allows me to plan for some of the more expensive or not-normally-on-our-shopping-list items.  I doubt these can be made for $0.50 a person, which is where I like to keep most weekday breakfasts.  However, I might find I am wrong, which would be lovely.

A few of these would also be good as a sandwich version, made ahead and frozen for reheating.  Also, a few call for croissants*, which are not cheap but can be found on sale if you look for them.  *I am not talking about crescent rolls, though those are also in a few recipes.  They are similar but not the same.

While my husband we love to have croissants for breakfast, if you do not eat them in time they are not as nice.  Or so my husband says.  His palate is more in tune to that sort of thing.  You can also find older ones on discount at the grocery store.  I am thinking those would be good for some of these recipes, especially for those who will be soaked in eggs and milk.

Here are 10 recipes I plan to try out in the upcoming days:

  1. Egg Croissant Casserole Recipe
  2. Sausage McMuffin Casserole
  3. Cheesy Tat Tot Breakfast Bake
  4. Easy Cheesy Breakfast Casserole
  5. Overnight Mexican Breakfast Casserole
  6. Breakfast Enchilada Bake
  7. Spinach, Feta, and Artichoke Breakfast Bake
  8. Italian Breakfast Casserole
  9. Farmer’s Market Overnight Breakfast Egg Casserole
  10. Broccoli, Ham, Mozzarella Baked with Eggs
Feb 132017
 

Chickens in Pen 2

I am continuing to go through draft posts, things I had started and not finished.  While this is a few year old, the topic is as relevant today as it was then … well, except I do not live in the same area any more … I may have to make contentions with others and start my own Farm Market Swap this year.

Last week my friend sent me an inviataion for this year’s Farm Market Swap.  Now to come up with ideas of what to take.

Last year I was not sure what to expect, so I took several of most things I canned.  Of course I left what we needed to make it through this year.  Turns out I took way too much.  Guess to much is better than not enough.

This year I decided to not take as much stuff.  Instead I will take a bit of two or three things.  To keep it interesting for everyone I am looking for things that are a bit more unusual.

Here are some ideas I have come across:

Chocolate Cherry Sauce (she talks about how this is not a low acid)

Chocolate Raspberry Sauce

Blackberry Syrup

*********************************************************

In the end I made Blackberry Syrup.  I made so much we are still using it on pancakes and waffles.  That is, we are using it once I remember to get out a new jar when the current one is empty.

The Chocolate Raspberry Sauce is something I tried, but chose not to take.  It came out too thick and not raspberry enough for my tastes.

blackberry bushes bloom

When we moved, the idea of doing anything like this seemed like an impossible feat.  What has happened this past week, though, has changed my thinking on this.

Friday, Jack and I joined a group of home schoolers for a party.  While the kids were playing, we mom began talking.

As it turns out, not only have we been blessed to live in an area with other CM home schoolers, but also ladies who like to garden, sew, cook, raise animals ….  by the fall, I think I may be ready to try something like this with these women.  Of course, others are always invited.  The more the merrier.

 

Have you attended something like this before?  What were your experiences?

Feb 122017
 

This post contains affiliate links to a great deal. I hope you all are able to be blessed by this offer.

Grove collaborative online shopping

As a part of getting back into my normal home making groove, I have been utilizing online shopping again.  Here is a great deal, one I hope you will find beneficial to your household, your health, and your pocket book.

Grove Collaborative is currently running the FREE Mrs. Meyer’s Gift Set promotion*.  I was able to add this offer to this month’s shipment containing additional needed items for my household. (Shipping is free with your VIP trial or $2.99 otherwise.)

I love knowing Grove provides quality natural products.  We have used several in the past, all of which I have been pleased with.

What makes this deal even better?  Not having to leave the house.  This is especially appealing if you live in one of the areas experiencing slick parking lots today.

We are having a pretty emotional day in our house today, and this upcoming week is going to be holding a lot of otherwise unusual activities.  Saving myself a trip to the store is right up my alley.

And what makes this deal GREAT!?  If you are a new customer and sign up through me, you will receive a $10 credit off a future shipment.

  • Free Mrs. Meyer Gift Set
  • Not having to leave the house
  • Free Shipping
  • Natural products
  • $10 credit toward a future purchase

Sounds like a great deal to me.

*This offer will only last for a short time and does not come around very often.

Feb 092017
 

This post contains affiliate links.  Prices are constantly changing, but these were the prices when I first found them.

Growing Through Reading

Here are 3 ebook deals happening right now, all for under $3 each, to help satisfy your gardening desires. Or maybe to help you begin a new project or learn something new.  Just like plants, our brains and souls need stimulation and nourishment in order to grow.  Reading does this in so many way – fiction or non-fiction, electronically or on paper, in your main language or one you are trying to learn – reading not only  helps you learn new things (or take you to far away places), it also helps your brain grow and strengthen.

While I would love for you to spend hours reading through old post on this site, here are 4 books I think you would prefer. (While these are also available in paper versions for a bit more, the links below are to the ebook versions.)

Square Foot Gardening with Kids: Learn Together: – Gardening basics – Science and math – Water conservation – Self-sufficiency – Healthy eating (All New Square Foot Gardening)

” In Square Foot Gardening with Kids, Mel reveals all of the tips, tricks, and fun projects he has used over the decades in one of his most cherished pursuits: teaching youngsters to build and grow their own kid-sized SFGs.”

Square Foot Gardening was one of the pivoting influences to get me into using raised beds.  While I still mix several various methods in my gardening, it is easy to see the influences this has had.


Practical Projects for Self-Sufficiency: DIY Projects to Get Your Self-Reliant Lifestyle Started

Inside are 25 various projects, ones that you do not necessarily need a lot of room for, but which could benefit you.  Personally, I think the cider press looked very useful, something I wish I had done 5 years ago. Now that I have more free brain cells to use, this looks like a good project to do with the kids. (They love to work and build with wood.)

If I am going to grow herbs, it would be nice to be able to dry them … and I am going to need a new compost bin, no matter which home we move into (none seems to have one) ….


Gardening for the Homebrewer: Grow and Process Plants for Making Beer, Wine, Gruit, Cider, Perry, and More

“Learn how to grow, dry, and store fresh hops. Or go off the beaten path and grow everything you need for your first gruit, cider, perry, or fruit wine. Have just a balcony or a windowsill? No problem! A variety of plant recommendations will suit gardeners of all types, even ones with limited space.”

When I was younger, I would admire the shelves of jars, filled with these interesting round things floating on top of liquid.  Later on I realized they were grapes.  Still later (okay, a few decades) I realized that perhaps she was making wine.  Growing up in a fairly teetotaler household, that was the last thing on my mind. 😉

I also had an uncle (same side of the family) who would often brew his own drinks.  I was in awe of how he knew to even do that.  Then I came across books like this one and realized how he knew what to do.  While some of the knowledge was passed down from one generation to the next, or local culture, other bits came from books like this.

Please enjoy responsibly.

Jan 252017
 

 

farmers market table selling

Selling at Farmers’ Markets can be fun and slightly addictive. The people are great and they usually have something in common, a love of gardening, or at least the fresh results from gardening.

When thinking about selling at a farmers’ market, do not feel like you have to be kept in the box of plants and fresh produce. Check with the rules of your market first, but there are many other related items you could sell.

1. Hanging gutter garden

2. Mason Jar Solar Light –   Great use for jars that you would no longer can in

3. Recycled pallet planters

4. Wind chimes – you can change these up by adjusting the decorations on top

 

What are some other items you could think of making? Are there places, beyond your Farmer’s Market, where you sell?

Jan 102017
 

This post contains affiliate links.

At the end of 2016/beginning of 2017 I did not write down official New Year’s Resolutions.  Instead, I spent December reflecting back on this past year and all the craziness it held, trying to get a grasp of it all:

  • the conclusion of a 2-year home remodel, which I initially thought would take 6 months (we saved thousands of dollars, though in exchange it took a lot longer)
  • my husband graduating with his MBA, going to class at night while working during the day
  • the subsequent job change
  • parenting for several months on my  own
  • and a move to a place with no current support network.

Not only did we move, but we moved into a rental house; a temporary situation we decided previously was a good decision while we learn the area.

Reflecting back on the year, there was a lot to take in.  My reality from this time a year ago till today is vastly different.  A year ago, I could not have even guessed we would be at the point we are now.

How am I then to look forward a year and know anything at all about what will happen?

I can’t.  I couldn’t if I tried.

5-love-languages-of-children

What I can do is think of habits or areas of life I would like to work on, setting myself up for success, hopefully, no matter what the future holds.  Here are a few of the areas I would like to work on this year:

  • Putting the “home” part back into “homemaking”.  Increasing the laughter in our home, decreasing the ‘stuff’, making it feel calm and uncluttered, these are all areas which need improvement and would provide beneficial results in other areas.
  • Being more consistant in use of my early morning hours – writing blog posts, visiting Swagbucks, getting a load of laundry ready to begin washing, etc.  Along with this would be going to be at a decent time, so as to be able to wake up at 5 a.m.  While it may seem early to some of you, I really do like those early hours better than the late one; I am more productive during those times.
  • Planning ahead consistently for those normal life events – whether this is a meal plan, a school lesson plan for the month, or a plan for when to do laundry, having these aides in place will reduce the amount of decisions I need to make every day.  I will gladly take any extra brain power I can get.  My consistancy this past year with these areas would ebb and flow, depending on what else was weighing on my emotions and calendar.  I want to get back to setting aside certain days or times for these events, rather than doing them as they happen to pop into my head.
  • Challenging myself to do some of the things which have scared me, things outside my comfort zone but which really are more ‘new’ than ‘scary’.  Or even things I have for too long said, “I am not good at that … This is an area I am really bad at..”  While I may never be someone to dive to the deepest trench in the ocean or become president (of the country or of a large business), that does not mean I should not continue to challenge myself.
  • Be more optimistic in terms of how I view myself.  Okay, maybe “optimistic” is not the appropriate word; what I do know is that I often find myself referring to negative aspects of my personality or apologizing for things which others may not even notice.  Instead of working to improve, I am so focused on my failures I miss what is going past.  Instead of sharing sunshine and flowers with others, I am focused on how I scuffed the floor last time.  Who cares about the floor?!  Move on, already!  Open the windows and let some sunshine in!  (Enough, I will stop with the exclamation marks.)

In general, I want to get back to the roots of who I am, of who I want to be.  That is something I feel I have lost these past several years while feeling, instead, like I was only trying to survive the day/week/season of life.

While I hesitate to call anything a “New Year’s Resolution”, to set a theme for the year, or to give myself yet another thing to feel guilty over, there are items which happen to be starting now.  This is in large part to due to the timing of the move, no more home remodel going on, or that fact that my normal month to feel this way (November) had enough of its own going-ons that it did not need any more.

One of the items under “Challenging myself to do things I said I couldn’t” is to get down a routine with Swagbucks, and other similar sites, in order to not only pay for this next year’s home school supplies, but also the cost of hosting this blog and gardening supplies, albeit limited compared to years’ past.  I do not have set number on hand right at the moment, though I will begin to gather them soon.  What I do know is that all together this will come to a few hundred dollars.  ($100 being the equivalent of 10,000 points, called SB).

Whatever activities I choose to do, in order to earn SB, will have to fit into my normal life.  I can not take an hour or two every day to sit clicking a screen, babysitting a point counter.  This is where having a smart phone has helped.

rotary phone with border

Years ago, my husband suggested we switch from our flip phone to a ‘smart’ phone, I bulked.  We no longer were on a set contract with our service provider, the phone we had made good calls, and if I wanted to see the internet, I would use a computer. “If someone wants me, they can call.  At least they should be polite enough to think me worthy of a few minutes talk time rather than a quick note written in bad english.” (a.k.a texting)  Why spend hundreds of dollars for something I found caused people to be rude and annoying. I did not need a ‘smart’ phone.  I did not want a ‘smart’ phone.

Then my husband came home with information about a phone service provider option.  All my reasons for not doing it began to pale in comparison to the cost savings.  We could save 60% on our phone bill. Each month.  No contract.

After discussions back and forth, running the numbers to see how long before we would be saving money, we became the owners of a ‘smart’ phone.  It took some time for me to figure out how this new gadget in my life might begin to work for me, rather than against me.  And, yes, texting has won me over for the most part.

Using my phone to help me earn and save money has been one of the best features I have enjoyed.  It has taken some time, but I have found things that work well for me.  I have also found things that did not work, but they are no longer on my phone and so I do not really remember what they all were. 😉

christmas-tree-baden-springs

Now that the holidays are over, a lot of us have gone into savings mode again as we rebuild our bank accounts from all that gift buying! Some of us have already started saving for the 2017 holidays! If you’re looking to extend your budget or just stay within it, Swagbucks is a great resource for that.

You’ve probably seen me write about Swagbucks a lot on here. It’s a site where you earn SB for things you’re probably doing online already, like searching, watching videos, discovering deals, and taking surveys. Then you take those points and exchange them for gift cards to places like Amazon, Starbucks, Walmart, Target, or PayPal cash.

While you may not grow so rich you lose the sense of the value of a dollar, it can help ease your budget. Whether you use it to pay for today’s needs (utility bill, groceries, restaurant outing …) or tomorrow’s wants (rainy day fund, Christmas/birthday gifts, …)

To make the impact on your bank account even greater, you can earn a bonus when you initially sign up.

Here’s how you get your bonus:

1. Sign up using this link

2. Earn 300 SB total before 2/1/17. You’ll get a $3 (300 SB) bonus for it!

3. If you spend at least $25 through Swagbucks Shop* you’ll get another $2 (200 SB) bonus on top of the cash back you’ll get from shopping. If you have some shopping to do online, just go to Swagbucks first and visit the store through them. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, but you’ll get SB points for every dollar you spend (on top of the bonus)!

That’s it. It’s super easy, and Swagbucks is for real.

So far this month, during the past 10 days, I have earned over $10 (1033 points).  This has been spread out between points earn for shopping online, a lot of video watching, several surveys answered, daily polls, bonuses for reaching daily goals, bonuses for finishing my Daily To-do list (on the left side of the home page), searching the web, and Swag Codes.

As I have begun to incorporate it into my daily routines, I have learned what works for me and what does not.  For example, I do better at finding surveys in the morning.  It also helps for me to start with a search first thing, followed by the other items on the To Do list.  After that, I focus on watching SBTV on my phone, then short clips on other apps.
LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues (Sony PlayStation 3, 2009)Combining earning from this month and some from last, I was able to redeem for a PayPal gift card, which was then used to pay for several items on Ebay. (The particular item shown definitely falls into the category of A Want.)  Of course, I clicked through on Swagbucks before finalizing the purchase on Ebay and will earn more SB back in the near future.  Every penny counts, and soon they begin to add up.

*You must receive your shopping SB before March 1st

Jan 092017
 

kids-garden

  1. Pick up discounted plants, bulbs, or seeds at the store.  After all, the house may take a while to sell and you could get in just a few more flowers or vegetables.
  2. Let the volunteer tomato plant grown and produce. Fresh tomatoes for the road is welcome any day.
  3. Visit the produce auction. You may not buy anything, but you can still visit and complain about the prices. “What?! Are the peppers made of gold?” Think of it as saying goodbye to what used to be.
  4. Mentally rearrange the annual flower plantings for next year.  “If a short trailing plant were added here ….”  Never mind that you will not be there to do anything about it, that is not the point.
  5. Add a perennial or bulb to a corner of the garden. While you may not be there to enjoy it next year, it could make someone else’s day a bit brighter. Think of it as an easy Pay-it-forward activity.
  6. Take a few seconds to glance through baskets and pots at yard sale.  Nothing may be bought, but it is still a pleasant hobby.  You never know when you might get some inspiration, and also reassurance of there always being pots and baskets at yard sales.
  7. Spend time weeding the flower bed. It may not matter next month if you pulled that last week, but it is a great way to deal with the stress going on now.  Even if the garage is filled with boxes, you will know something is in order.
  8. Process a batch of jelly.  I have to admit I did this activity, though for a specific reason.  There were several cups of zucchini in my freezer.  Not wanting to make a huge batch of muffins, I made some fresh zucchini jam to take to a Farm Market Swap.  While not all of it was swapped, it was a better use of the zucchini than tossing it in the compost pile.
  9. Slow down while driving, and glance at the potential treasures set out for free curbside. Dreaming does not cost you time or effort, and it for sure does not cost you moving fees.
  10. Feel guilty for not having planted more. This may be a personal issue which no one else deals with.  However, I really was feeling bad for not planting peas, etc.  Especially when it ended up being 5-6 months from the time I knew we were going to be moving “at some point” to the actual moving date.

While I could not foresee how long it was going to be before a move happened, and I did not have the extra time to take care of a garden, then guilt was still there.  At this point I need to focus on the good which came from this lack of gardening – using up items previously preserved as there were not free ingredients available, simplified meals, and finding new ways to save.  It also allowed me time to focus on other aspect of life.

Have there been gardening, or other, activities which you did even though you knew it was sort of a moot point?  Why did you continue to do them anyway?

Jan 042017
 

This post contains affiliate links. No shoveling of snow required.

Recently I participated in Swagbucks Team Challenge.  While I was no where near one of the top earners, and our team actually came in last, I was able to learn a lot from others on the team.  The encouragement was great, with a lot of positive talk happening in the chat box at the bottom of the page.  For me, that was the real prize of the whole experience.

Since that time, I have been using my new found knowledge to seek out various ways to earn point, called SB.  These points can then be redeemed for gift cards or PayPal cash.

This past week and a half, I have tried to be more diligent in participating in activities that, while they are worth fewer points, do not require as much focused attention on my part.  This has worked well for this time in my schedule.  With the Christmas holiday, my husband being home during the day, both kids being off school, traveling three days round-trip back to our old house to pick up the last of our things, and starting up home school again this week, I have still been able to earn 398 SB (with 42 more pending), the equivalent to almost $4.  This may not sound like a lot, but it really does add up.

Assuming I keep doing what I have been, even while being gone for three days and having a major holiday, at the end of the month I would have earned $17 in gift cards or PayPal money.

10 Days – 3 Days traveling = 7 days

30 days in a month / 7 days = 4.28 7-day-periods * $4 per 7-day-period = $17.12

However, I know it could easily be $25, due to bonuses earned from reaching daily goals and spending a few more minutes taking a survey. (Which is exactly what I did last night while waiting for the kids to fall asleep.  Jack still needs someone nearby to feel safe enough to fall asleep in his room, so I sit in the hallway. Why not get paid for my time doing so?)

Then there are the collector bills.  They sure do make the snow look fun, do they not?

One of my favorite things about using Swagbucks (okay, there are a lot of favorite things) is that I can get rewards for searching the web through their search engine. Every now and then they have “Collector’s Bills” worth bonus SB points that you can collect by simply searching the web. Collect them all, and you get an SB Bonus! Once you’ve collected enough SB, you can redeem them for gift cards to stores like Walmart, Target, and many more!

Here’s all the information for this week’s Snow Much Fun Collector’s Bills:
Search the web through the Swagbucks search starting Monday, January 2nd through Sunday, January 8th, and when you get a search win, you may get a special Collector’s Bill valued at either:

  • 5 SB
  • 7 SB
  • 9 SB
  • 11 SB
  • 16 SB
  • 22 SB

When you get a Collector’s Bill you’ll receive the value of the bill and the bill will be added to your “Collector’s Bills” ledger. Collect all 6 Collector’s Bills and you’ll instantly earn a 20 SB Bonus!

Keep searching til you find them all!

So far I have collected the 9 SB bill.  It was a great surprise when I entered my search term and earned money for doing so.  I love it.

Sign up through the link here to get a 300 SB bonus when you earn 300 SB this month, if you are a new member.  If you do the math, that is a great return on investment; much better than any bank can give you right now.

 

Jan 022017
 

kids-garden

Having moved several times, always hours away from the previous garden, there are a few things which always automatically fall of the list of gardening activities.  While some items have to remain, after all you do not want to yard to look unkempt, here are 10 items gardeners should not do once they know they will be moving.

  1. Plan a huge garden. While they may not be able to completely avoid the urge to plant a garden, it will not be as big as previous years.
  2. Pay attention to frost dates. This is true, unless they are moving after the last frost date and want to get the most out of the garden they did plant.
  3. Pay attention to rain amounts. Again, true, unless they already planted a garden and are still reaping the benefits.  Otherwise, who cares if it rains enough to drown your tomato plants and set your peas back by a month. Or does not rain enough and would otherwise require watering to keep everything alive.
  4. Set up a watering system.  (see #3)
  5. Stress about weeds. Do not let the garden go to weeds, but there is no use trying to keep every single one away.  You will never get around to actually packing a box in preparation for the move.
  6. Go through existing seed packets, making note of what is missing for that year.  It may be easier to toss the whole lot, starting over again at the new garden.  Or, if you have a collection of heirloom seeds, do not worry about sorting them till you are preparing for the next growing season.  Seed packets do not usually take up a lot of room.  You would be better off spending your time learning about your new growing zone or soil.
  7. Inspecting pots, checking for holes and unusable pots. Unless it is an unusual pot, hold sentimental value, or already has a plant in it, you would be better off giving them away.  Unfortunately, I only followed this advice for half my pots.  Somehow the sneaky devils multiplied in my basement while I was looking at my canned goods.  While I tossed many, gave others away, and sold a few, I still ended up moving a fair amount.
  8. Spend hours looking through the latest gardening catalogs. It is too painful to realize you will not be taking advantage of the latest heirloom find or hybrid flower for the year.  Best if you just “slowly step away from the catalog” and think good thoughts about what you did last year.
  9. Scour curbside, looking for treasures to be re-purposed into trellises, containers, bird baths, garden sculptures, stepping stones, tunnels … I would think this is pretty self explanatory.  However, if you do not understand why, I suggest you take a look at moving costs.  Those ‘free’ treasures could end up costing a whole lot of your garden budget to move to a new location.
  10. Watch the latest in gardening television.  This is best left for reruns on rainy days once you get to your new place.  The urge to try out the latest project or solution will only delay you getting to your new garden.

Are there other gardening chores or habits you dropped once you knew a move was in the near future?