Das right. I’m in a blogging groove right meow, so might as well Carpe Diem the it-shay out of this moment.
I always like browsing through the “link love” kinda posts when I have some downtime, and want some things to fill my precious time with. Because a Buzzfeed quiz about which jelly bean flavor my auroa is trumps any and all types of productivity on a Sunday.
In case you were wondering, my auroa is cotton candy.
So I decided to throw my own readings into the mix for a little somethin’ I like to call
A little bit of me, and little bit of love, and a whole heck of a lot of coffee.
It’s been one of those weeks where the days seem to drag on dial-up slow, but the week itself went by so quick.
I wanted to share something a little outside the realm of stuffing my face and face stuffing worthy recipes for a moment to share some of my favorite ways to get FREE MONAYYYY!!
I know. I know. I sound like one of those infomercials you wake up to at 2 AM, yet can’t seem to turn away from. But I promise, there’s no gimmicks, I wasn’t paid or given any cool things for writing this, but rather wanted others to reap the benefits of earn a few extra Washingtons to help feed your peanut butter addiction. Call me an enabler.
Price for shipping and sarcasm may vary.
But first, let’s get the usual suspects out of the way.
I went out for a gorgeous 2.5 mile run last night, on which felt like legit the perfect summer night. Just slightly cool, the sun starting to go down, the smell of fresh cut grass in the air, and a homeless man puking up his Colt 45 on a park bench.
It was the kinda night you didn’t want to end. Until you realized there were pancakes to be eaten.
Yup. Still refusing to go grocery shopping until tonight, so a package of gluten-free pancake mix from the GFAF Expo, my last egg, and a scoop of protein powder came to dinner rescue. Plus pancakes after running is just like, an unspoken rule or something.
Or maybe I just made that up so I could eat pancakes more often.
The program I’ve been using for the longest time is SwagBucks. In a nutshell, it is a search engine that will reward you with points aka “SwagBucks” randomly when you use it to search the internet.
You can do plenty more things to earn additional swagbucks such as surveys, daily polls, watching quick video clips, and the list goes on. You can then convert those points into goods, or my favorite gift cards!
I usually up my swagger during the fall/winter to help pay for Christmas gifts via Amazon gift cards. Every 500 points equals $5. It may not seem like a lot, but they add up, and hey it’s free money! I think I saved a good $40-50 last year after saving up my gift card codes until December.
There’s a lot of posts out there on how to maximize your earnings on SB, but I just try and focus on a few things each day to slowly up my buck bank. Usually every morning I’ll do the following:
-Daily Poll: A daily question for an easy 1 swagbuck
-NOSO:No Obligation Special Offers. A lot like junk mail, but just click “skip” on all of them, and you’ll get 2 swagbucks at the end. Plus it takes less than a minute.
-Search Engine: I use the swagbucks toolbar for my default search engine, and search the sites I always use (facebook, pinterest, feedly, etc.) You never know when or how much you’ll get for searching, but the more you search, the more opportunities will come!
Only on weekends, or when I really am motivated to save, I’ll do some surveys, or some of the sponsored activities they offer. But if you do the daily list, the swagbucks will add up, and easily convert into some free money!
-No costs. Just sign up and start earning!
-Lots of gift cards to choose from (amazon, walmart, paypal are my favs). Rewards you for shopping on lots of sites similar to ebates.
–Referral bonus (affiliated link). When people sign up using your referral link, you get rewarded when they get rewarded! When they earn swagbucks, you get swagbucks. How awesome is that?!
-Takes a while. Unless you dedicate a lot of time to surveys, special offers, or truly buy something through one of the ads, it can take some time to rack up some points.
-Lots of “spammy” ads. A lot of the offers that earn you big bucks seem a little like spam mail to me. Like the ads you’re not supposed to click on in those pop ups. An extra 40 swagbucks isn’t worth potentially compromising my information or opening up a virtual norovirus.
This one started as a “college kids only” program, since I remember signing up and needing to put in which college I was from. Now it is free to all!
This one is actually pretty fun in the realm of free money. You simply take one of their short quizzes, and earn a few points at the end. You also get a “daily spin” like a slot machine to earn extra points. If you come back everyday without missing one, you can earn up to 3 spins per day.
The only bad part is you can’t convert the points directly into cash. Most of my points end up in their raffles, which are for a lot of great stuff. Like $500 amazon gift cards, $100 to Target, or $50 to Starbucks.
There are A LOT of entries for each raffle, so obviously the chances of winning are much like the lotto. In my years of using Dailybreak, I’ve won a $25 Amazon card, $100 to Quiznos, and a random giant pool float, ha!
One other thing that I’ve used my points for is through their “store”, which is for discount codes to different stores or websites, and also magazine subscriptions. I’ve used mine for both Runner’s World and Women’s Health year long subscriptions. A free magazine is a free magazine!
-No costs. Create an account. Take some quizzes. Earn some spins. And save up some points.
-Relatively fun. Remember taking those quizzes in Cosmo Girl to figure out what kind of friend you are, or what type of dog is your spirit animal? It’s kinda like that. And each quiz takes only a minute or so to complete.
-Use points for discounts or magazine subscriptions. Both are a money saver without having to spend a cent.
-No direct money. Points can only be used to enter raffles for a chance to win big bucks, discount codes, or also for making bids on items much like ebay.
Walgreens Balance Rewards
I found out about this one from Ms. RER, and was a deciding factor in whether or not to get a Fitbit.
Simply add the Walgreens app to your phone, sync your fitbit to it, and earn Balance Rewards points for the steps you do each day ( 20 points for every mile). You can also log things manually like daily weigh ins, smoking cessation, blood pressure, and activities outside of your Fitbit steps.
Once you earn 5000 points, it is worth $5 towards your Walgreens purchase. Or 10,000 for $10, and so on.
I usually save mine up until I need something like shampoo, conditioner, razors, makeup, or hair color that makes my hair turn gray.
-No cost. Add the app. Sync your Fitbit or other fitness tracker that is compatible, and earn points. You can also earn points without a fitness tracker by manually logging your daily weigh in, or activities, but will take longer to earn points.
-Directly converts into money. Sure, it can only be spent at Walgreen’s, but if it’s on items you are already going to buy, why not save some money in the process?!
-Can only use in 5000 point increments. You have to wait until you’ve racked up at least 5000 points in order to use your rewards towards a purchase. No 1000 points for a dollar off, or 2500 for $2.50. This is a little annoying to me.
– App glitches. Numerous times the Balance Rewards for Healthy Choices part of the Walgreens app would take forever to load, an error would occur, or not load at all. They also redesigned the app, so the rewards section is a little harder to find. (Under the “Prescriptions & Health” tab, and “Health Services & Info” section)
-Not all fitness trackers are compatible. I got my Fitbit Charge to sync by using the flex option, but if you have other trackers that aren’t compatible it’s kinda a bummer. Hopefully as time goes on they will add more to the list!
This one is the newest addition to my free money stockpile, but I LOVE it! I received an email about it, and decided to give a go myself before I thought about promoting it on the blog.
It is an app that rewards you for making and logging healthy choices, such as eating a healthy breakfast, attending a fitness class, keeping your pet healthy, and hundreds of other activities.
You earn more points by having your activity “verified”, which the most common way is by uploading a picture. Other Wellcoin users verify by voting how accurately it proves you did the activity.
For fellow food bloggers, and WIAW participants who already take pictures of your daily eats, sweaty selfies, and a stream of dog photos, it’s easy to earn some cash for sharing them!
The points add up pretty quick just by adding your breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and workouts. You can then use the points to buy awesome stuff like $10 to Sports Authority or Whole Foods, Class Passes, and even gear! I’m saving up for a pair of these Puma shoes. Only 7,000 points away!
-No costs. Just download the app, snap some pics, and earn.
-Converts into actual money. Can buy gift cards and products with points.
– Easy & fun. I already take a lot of food/fitness pics, so this was easy to add on to. Love being a part of a community of folks that do the same too!
-Need a smartphone. You do need the app to start logging points, although you can access it via the web. Maybe you can take pictures if you have a computer camera? I haven’t tried that one yet.
-Limited selection for prizes. Some of the gift cards are limited to specific area stores, so if they are far away it may not be worth it.
And if you want to join in on the fun, and earn me some points (100 per referral!) shoot me an email via my contact page, so I can send you the link!
Hope that at least one of these sounds up your alley, and you can earn some dough to spend on yourself others and charities.
…until we get to the weekend. You need something to look forward to in order to get through til Friday.
Especially when your Monday starts with losing your phone and an eviction scare.
I dropped my phone unknowingly on my walk home from work, in which I mildly panicked and freaked out. I am so lucky to have had someone drop it off right next door to work, and “lost mode” exists for iPhones. Lesson learned.
And I guess they never got my last month’s rent. And after “multiple attempts to contact me” aka the one voicemail I just received, I get a late notice and an eviction threat. Life is really hating me right now.
And that’s where I turn my feelings into food… sharing.
I planned to get my long run in this AM since I was traveling on Sunday, and Monday was just a shizz show, but sleep sounded so much better to me. So I fueled with my carb-filled breakfast for my run 8 hours later.
And since I’m trying to be good at not chugging down 5 cups of coffee a day, I switched it up with some green tea.
Plus the rest of the squash and some cukes with honey mustard, and some blueberry almonds from my latest Blue Diamond haul.
And because that wasn’t enough to fuel me through the afternoon, a giant Granny Smith to calm my sweet tooth.
I have this weird aversion to going grocery shopping during the week. Call it a weakness, quirk, or sheer laziness, but the thoughts of grocery shopping before Friday makes me cringe.
So instead, I’ll eat a jumble of makeshift meals until I cave in.
More meatloaf // green beans with feta & a squirt of sweet potato soup
Now that the humidity had settled, there was a light mist in the air, and 30 minutes had passed to let my Garmin and stomach settle, I hit the road for my long run.
It felt awesome to get out there after the bumps in the road called life I’ve had this past week. I was pleasantly surprised to see my easy pace wasn’t terrible after being out of the game for some time. I just went with what my body felt like at the time, and was happy to see a sub 10:00.
Did I tell you how much I love running in the summer rain? Well I love running in the summer rain.
There’s something about the mystery of “is it sweat or rain?!” that calls to me. Plus my face doesn’t melt off in the blaze of the sun.
Even in the rain, I’m a hot mess afterwards, and freeze pops make the perfect post-run treat.
Especially when you have a freezer full of them to work through before summer ends. Thanks MJ!
Followed by a lazy girl’s protein mug cake.
I just dump a scoop of protein powder (whey works best) a sprinkle of baking soda, cinnamon, and about 3 tablespoons of water in a mug. Microwave for 30 seconds, and top with pb and granola. Boom.
The texture’s a little more chewy than the usual mug cake, but I ain’t complaining for a 1 minute mug cake. Especially since I’m getting closer to the end than I know it.