Monday, October 18, 2010

Deb's Daily Dollar Idea: Skip the soda

Today's money-saving idea is simple: skip the soda.  When you go out to eat at a restaurant, whether sit-down or drive-thru, opt for water instead of a drink.  You may only save a buck or two, but if you're paying for several people it will add up.  Consider also the number of times you buy soda over the course of a year and by choosing water instead of other drinks, the savings really begin to pile up.  Add in the serendipity factor of not ingesting all that refined sugar, caffeine and who else knows what, and the health benefits add up also.  So do yourself, and your wallet a favor.  Drink up, but only H20.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Debi's Daily Dollar Idea: Thrift Stores

Today's Daily Dollar Idea may not be a new one to many, but it's one that has saved me hundreds, if not thousands of dollars through the years.  No matter where you live your town is sure to have one, if not a dozen thrift stores.  Before getting in your car to drive to Wally World, Macy's or Target, consider if you could purchase what you need at a Thrift Store.  Simple idea, but I for one sometimes "forget" to consider finding what I need at a thrift store, thereby paying a fraction of what I would if I purchased an item new.

Most thrift stores have clothing, dishes, appliances, furniture, books, shoes, toys, music and much more.  I love going in the store with a $5 bill in my purse, and then leaving the store with a bag of items and $1 still in my purse!   I couldn't begin to count the items of clothing thrift stores have provided for my children and myself, several pieces still with the original price tag on them (which means they've never been worn!)  One of my favorite finds was a round, glass turntable plate that goes inside a microwave oven.  I accidentally broke mine, so finding it was the highlight of my day!  Paid a buck for it, and it was the perfect size.  I've also purchased 3 different bread machines at various times, each for $5, and each in perfect working condition. 

I've also purchased canning jars, drinking glasses, dishes, bread pans, and a host of other kitchen dishes.  I bought dirt cheap winter coats for my daughters on a trip to Utah.  Why pay $50 for a coat they only need for 3 days?  At $3 each, the coats I bought in a thrift store were like brand-new, and you couldn't tell they'd been previously owned.

So consider shopping at a thrift store next time you head out to buy something you just gotta have.  Then see how little green you have to use to get what you need.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Debi's Daily Dollar idea: Free Samples

Today's money saving idea is brought to you by hundreds of businesses who give away their products for free, in the hopes to make you a lifelong customer.  Over the past couple of years I have stockpiled free samples of diapers, pull-ups, paper towels, garbage bags, make-up, shampoo and conditioner, lotion, pens, granola bars, candy, drink mixes, laundry detergent, dishwasher tabs, cereal, rice mixes, infant formula, dog food and more.  The internet makes it a cinch to find, and send for free samples.  My favorite freebies website is:

When you get to that website lick on "Real Quality Samples," and "Coupons/Deals" and "Other Free Stuff."  You should be able to find several samples to get started.  Visit daily, or a couple times a week or once a month, depending on how much time you have, and how much free stuff you want!

 I have used many of the individual samples of shampoo and conditioner when I go on trips.  I've given the diapers away to new moms, and we've enjoyed countless treats without spending a penny.  Sometimes you can request free samples when you visit individual company's websites.

Why pay for something when you can get the product for free?  Once you get started you may want to keep a "Got it for Free" journal to keep track of those freebies.  Feel free to leave feedback when a freebie shows up in your mailbox!