Oct 18, 2015

How to Get Quality Free Samples

There are loads of free sample sites where you can sign up with your most basic information and receive a product in the mail, with little to no hassle and they don't expect anything in return other than your future business. Since I began this blog, I signed up with a few sites that do expect something in return or you'll likely not get any more free products. It's called product reviews. They send me free (often full size) items and I then blog about it, share my thoughts on Facebook and/or Twitter and everything I do earns me "brownie points" towards my next mission.

So far I have received all of these items from BzzAgent. To sign up to be a BzzAgent, CLICK HERE. They have the sharing tools right on your dashboard page where you can share your review, product information or even Facebook/Twitter posts with a simple click. It is super easy and I love what I have received so far. You can also link up your MyPoints account as an added bonus and when your points build, you earn free gift cards!

 Another site I joined is called Crowdtap. I have received two "missions" so far from this one and one is with Kleenex. They sent me pocket size packs of tissues to review and the other one I received was a full size bottle of Roc deep wrinkle serum. I am still using these products and will soon have my reviews ready for this site. If you are interested in being a Crowdtapper, CLICK HERE.  Here, aside from getting free samples, you get entered into drawings for gift cards, I won a $5 Amazon gift card my first month!

Pinch Me also has great samples and usually they will send you a full box of items at once. Pinch Me opens once per month at a given time/date and it is your responsibility to pick what you want fast before they are gone. There is a limit to how many you may choose and you will only see what they think is a good match for you. To find out about these samples CLICK HERE. They don't require you to do much afterwards, but maybe a quick survey on the products but you can share as much info as you like. Here is what I received the last batch of samples.
Another one that sends out a box full of items at once is Influenster. Here they are very specific about what they want you to do on a "campaign" and here again, they have all the tools you need right from your own dashboard so sharing, writing, photographing is made easy. To find out how to join this team CLICK HERE. From this site I received a huge box of Apple & Eve juices.

My final site I use is Smiley360. You can sign up for this one by CLICKING HERE. I really like Smiley360 because it is so user friendly and the products are great! I've received several types of vitamins already and Advil cold/sinus medicine. You earn points here and take quick one minute surveys to determine if you are a good match for each product so check back often to see what's available!

These keep me pretty busy and since I am no longer a stay-at-home mom and work full time during the week, my plate is pretty full with these. There are others I know. If I join anymore in the future I'll do an updated article but for now, my mailbox is full!

Oct 12, 2015

Spooky Book

Need something spooky to read for the Halloween season? Try my latest fiction piece Ladybug now reduced to only $1.29. Available online as an eBook or PDF form only. CLICK HERE to find out more.

Twitter Party-I Won (Again)

Yep, that's right. I won (again). This time, I won a $200 gift card to Big Lots. I could not be more excited! I have participated in about 5 Twitter parties and so far I have won 2. My first was a $100 gift card to Walgreens which you can read about by clicking here. I won that one back in July and you can see from my Walgreen's post what all I got for that awesome card. I stretched it as far as it would go!

The key it not getting discouraged. Often there are hundreds of people competing for two or three prizes so you can't let yourself give up if you don't win right away. Most are done by random winner selections so you have as good a chance as anyone else! You must first have a Twitter account. They are free. Then you must RSVP (if required) to be eligible for the prizes. You can follow the directions listed for each party on the website announcing the event.

You also want to go with a trusted party. I use SoFabChats.com  and I keep up with the Twitter parties schedule from this mommy blog called Mommyblogexpert (click here). That way I trust these parties are legit and I get the prizes I win! I am so excited to received this latest gift from Big Lots, the first thing I will buy is a new set of "good" sheets to make my bed even more cozy for Fall.

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Staying warm in the Winter-Plan A, Plan B and Plan C

Let's face it, we are all very dependent on our heating/cooling sources for our homes. We are at the mercy of the power company, gas and utility departments to keep the sweat off of our brow and the chill off of our bones. But what if that source was taken from us? What if the storm of the century falls over us and we find our families buried beneath blankets with fog on our their breath? How can we stay warm?

You should plan now (in the Fall) for the winter months. It is a great idea to have alternative heating sources and not limit yourself to one. Have a plan B! A couple of years ago, our plan B ran out and we had to resort to plan C. This worked out fine for my family and we even had a plan D if it became necessary.

When the power went out for a few days, we were fortunate enough to have a couple of two brick gas heaters to use as back up. Guess who ran out of gas? That's right, we did. The ice and snow made it impossible for a gas truck to come out to deliver. We are very rural and do not have the benefit of city lines. So what did we do? We blocked off rooms that we could live without and broke out the kerosene heaters. Now I don't recommend this if you have small children and these shouldn't be used long term but we were cold, and we had them in the barn along with bottles of kerosene so we stayed warm until the power came back on. These portable heaters can be dangerous and you should be very careful not to have anything near the heaters if you find yourself in this position. We do have fire alarms in our house and we monitored the heaters when they were on. Our plan D was to move out to the cabin which is a tiny little one room building my husband built years ago that is on the property. It has a wood burning stove and we could have totally stayed there if needed.

The point is to plan now. We learned a lesson and now that Fall has arrived our gas tank if full, we still have the kerosene if we get desperate and plenty of firewood to burn. We have Plan A, Plan B, Plan C and Plan D!

Oct 5, 2015

Apple & Eve Freebie Review

I got my first real VoxBox (courtesy of Influenster) in the mail last week and it was a big one! It was a huge box of Apples & Eve Organic juices. There were some smaller juice boxes for the kids and a large one for me!

Let's start with the negative. I only found one and since I didn't actually try that flavor, I'm thinking it was all just taste preference. My daughter tried one that seemed sour or tart for her liking but it was a Quencher version named Berrylicious Lemonade. Which you would expect to be a little tart. The others passed her inspection with flying colors.

The positives I found were that a.) They are organic. This does ease the minds of worrying parents to know how "untouched" the fruits are in their original state.   b.) They are healthy. Being 100% juice, you are assured your children are getting the maximum vitamins and nutrients from their drink.  c.) They are convenient. Not only can you buy the bigger juice containers to fit easily in the refrigerator door, you can buy the smaller kid sizes for lunch boxes.  d.) Finally, they taste fantastic. I drank the Natural Style Apple flavor which was packed with rich flavor. I was thankful it wasn't watered down like cheaper versions.

We were really pleased with our samples sent out from Influenster. To learn more about my product reviews or see my "must have" lists, click here. If you are putting off trying the Apple & Eve product line, wait no more. They totally passed The Bama Life test!

Oct 1, 2015

Point Rewards to Earn Gift Cards

There are countless sites out there where you can do surveys, read emails, do this, do that and earn points which you can redeem for free gift cards. I participate in three.

The easiest and quickest to earn points of the three is Superpoints. I log in each day and earn a point, click on the big Superpoints button to earn additional points (sometimes 250 or more)! There are plenty of other things on the site you can do for points like take surveys (I rarely do although these are pretty quick).To visit the website and sign up today, use my referral link. It's best to have "friends" or a network on this one so you earn each other points! My September earnings total for Superpoints was 6117 which I choose to save this time. I'm saving for the Paypal cash card which is 11,000 points but I could trade in now for smaller cards if I wanted. Not bad for about 5 minutes a day (no joke). It does take a little while to get these cards once you have redeemed them unless you are a Platinum member (I am not).

The next easiest is MyPoints. You should also use my referral link if signing up for this as well. I have earned 1622 points on this site in Sept but could have easily earned more! This one is great to click and watch a fast video and earn points but I also have my BzzAgent account linked up to it which earns me additional points. BzzAgent is an influencer site I use to get free samples for product reviews. (Click here for BzzAgent) There are many $10 gift cards I could go ahead and get but I'm holding out for a larger one. I rarely go here except on weekends but there is the potential to earn rapid points here if you wanted.

The final one I do is Swagbucks. There are so many things on this site to earn points from but I mainly turn on a set of videos and let them run in the background on mute while I'm working on the computer. I also use their search engine and earn points that way and with the daily poll question, I add an additional point. Again, the  potential is there to earn way more than I do, I just don't have the time to put more than about 5 minutes a day. In Sept I earned 879 points which I did trade some in for a $5 Walmart eCard. I will most likely keep trading these in for small cards like the Walmart ones and then do an online purchase for products from that store. The referral link for Swagbucks can be found here.

I spend no more than about 10 minute a day total since I open up tabs and can use different devices at the same time working sometimes all three at once. It's a quick and easy way to earn a little something extra without a lot of effort! If you have a favorite site for point rewards not listed above, comment below! Share the wealth of knowledge if you know it is legit!