Friday, January 19, 2018

Frugal Friday With Marsha -- From Rugs and Rags to Riches

My title is just my silly play on words.
As you know, I have been trying to work through the clean your house in 30 days in just 20 minutes a day list.  One day was bedroom.  I spent my 20 minutes starting to clean off my dresser.  Along the way I hung up some clothes, sorted some clothes, started a donation box, and ran across a pile of t-shirts that I had put in a sack at a rummage sale.
I pick them up that way super cheap.   I cut strips in rounds, then take the tops to make rags.  I'm stocked up on rags again, and eventually I will get to making a toothbrush rug with the strips.  (Still working on another rug right now with cotton fabric strips.)

Today's 20 minutes was surface clean living room and kitchen.  I didn't make it to the kitchen as I actually spent more than the 20 minutes dusting wall decorations as well as dusting the entertainment center and cleaning all the devices and glass.

I got in the black soap from Recyclebank and have given it to the granddaughter I intended it for.  This week I ordered One Twine Full Circle Home Tidy Dish Cloth Set.   I also happened to see that I could get a years subscription to Modern Farmer for 0 points!!!

If you aren't a member of Recyclebank, first click the link in the above paragraph to join, then check out these ways to earn some points.   I am finding it well worth my time with the merchandise I am now getting, plus you learn a lot about the planet and recycling along the way too.

5 Free Recyclebank Points

5 Free Recyclebank Points

Don't forget your Friday Freebie!

Free Chobani Smooth Yogurt at Kroger & Affiliates

I have been a member of MyPoints for just over 20 years, yes, you read that right, 20 years!  (December 8, 1997).   Only recently I am stepping up my game and making sure to get the daily 5 list done each day for the bonus points.  I'm in hopes this will net me a $5 amazon gift card each month.   I will be able to cash out tomorrow or Sunday, so I will know for sure next month if it's possible.

I am giving another app a try.  I'm almost to $3 PayPal payout.  I will post results and the link and such next week after I see if it really does pay.

Our mortgage went down $60 a month, but unfortunately my hubby's car quit and he had to re-do a loan to get another one. That loan payment went up $60.  hhmmm
I plan to get rid of all cable except internet.  I have Hulu and Amazon Prime both, which will be more than enough to find things to watch.  The problem has been that we didn't have a working controller for the PlayStation to use them.  I cashed in 1000 sb with Swagbucks and ordered a set of 2 brand new controllers.  I paid $6.75 after the $10 was taken off, plus I bought through the ibotta app for an extra 36 cents back.  (Yes, could have also shopped through Swagbucks for the same amount back in sb, but I'm also working towards getting my ibotta to the $20 PayPal payout) (And, I did a deal on Hulu with Swagbucks and earned back 2000 sb for taking the $5.99 a month deal)

Well, I better close this post for this week.  Don't forget to link up any frugal, simple living, deals, savings type posts you might have to share!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

WIP Wednesday -- 6 & 6 in 2018 Challenge with Pomegranate and Chintz

I did no sewing this past week, which makes me sad.  All I did, in fact, was some crocheting here and there on the headbands.  I didn't even get a picture of my progress on those.

However, last week I went to the Pomegranate and Chintz blog to find that her challenge for 2018 is 6 old and 6 new.  You can find the post HERE.

I have updated my list on the right side bar to reflect the new challenge.  I only have one new listed so far as it's something I really wanted to get to in 2017, but never runner locker hook rug.

Here is what I chose for the 6 old.

Arkansas Crossroads quilt.  I was in high hopes of finally getting back to work on this quilt this month at sit n' sew at the quilt shop.  Unfortunately it was cancelled due to bad weather.

Rainbow String quilt. I started the blocks with the color of the month with the So Scrappy Blog (link at the bottom of my post).  I left it way behind.  I'm glad that the color for the month is blue, a color I didn't get to last year.  Will I actually get to it this month?

Five and Dime quilt.  Oh gosh, this top has been made for some time now.  My plan is to do the flip method of sandwiching this, and then putting a yo-yo with a button in the center of each block.

Charming Stars quilt.  All that's left on this one is to finish the hand quilting around the edge and put the binding on.

Hexagon quilt.   I do not think that I did anymore with this in 2017 at all other than pinning hexagons onto the paper pieces!  Long project.  I plan to take the Hexagons with me for my hand work on a bus trip later this year with my guild.  Time will tell there.

Braid in a Day baby quilt.   This still sits the same as it did when I last reported it in my post some weeks ago.  I need to attempt my machine quilting on it, and put the binding on.

I've been thinking about what I was going to work on at the quilt retreat coming up at the end of April.  Looks like I have these 6 options to start with!!

I'm looking forward to seeing what others are working on this week and getting some motivation to get my machine out.   I link up with the following blogs:

WIPs on Wednesdays

Jo's Country Junction:

KatieMae Quilts for BOM weekly linky.

  Quilting is more fun than Housework

Friday, January 12, 2018

Frugal Friday With Marsha -- Slacking Already?

Last week I wrote about using the How to Clean Your House in 20 Minutes a Day for 30 Days from the apartmenttherapy website.  I did well for only 3 days.  I then ran into 2 days in a row where I was away from home the majority of both days.    Then, hubby started his week vacation, which always throws me off having him home all day.  Sigh.....I have to wonder when my life my actually slow down so that I can get into a good groove of routines.

The re-usable utensil set came in from Recyclebank.  I will order another set as they will be good add in gifts, but this time I decided to order the Nubian Heritage African Black Bar Soap instead.  It says it's good for acne (as well as many other things), and I want to give it to my 13 yr old granddaughter.  I still have more than enough points in my account to order more of the plasticware.

Here are some links to check out for some free Recyclebank points:

5 Free Recyclebank Points

30 Free Recyclebank Points

5 Free Recyclebank Points

I went to Snagshout to look for something to order for my oldest daughter for her birthday coming up on February 1.  I ended up getting her a silicone tipped tong set for $3.89.  It's a nice set that also comes with a squeeze bottle brush too.   While there I also ordered a set of 5 headbands for part of Amelia's 1st birthday gifts from me.  They were just $1.79.

I was able to order the above items using the $6 in amazon that I cashed out for from the Lucktastic App.  I was excited to find out that they now offer instant rewards starting at $2 to get amazon added now!  (I'm also really close to enough points to redeem for a $10 Burger King gift card too)

I still am far from having my earnings and such all added up from 2017.  I have totaled found money at $1.24, money paid babysitting at $1,193, and gifts at $305.80 (this includes birthday money and money from my ex)  I have that I was given $145 in gas money, but I know that's not right.  I had to have forgotten to write down several times throughout the year.  My mom gives me $10 a month for gas money, so that alone is $120, and my daughter gave me gas money lots of times for rides to work as well.  I know once I get figured out how much I was paid by websites in comparison to what I paid some of them for upgrades that I will be rethinking the upgrades.  Sigh....again with the time issue.

I am keeping separate columns this year on my earnings.  One page just for online and apps, other columns for all other items.  So far I am doing well with the 365 just with online and app earnings.  I hope I can keep it up!

Last week I shared a link with you to find out about getting free eggs and bread from Wal-Mart on  the app.  I didn't check it out until later, but I'm very glad I did!  I had no idea.  Add this one to my list.  When I went in, there was also free tomatoes.  It's nice too that you can choose the coupons and then instead of a mobile coupon or a paper coupon, you shop, but then get the money back into your PayPal account after you take a picture of your receipt in the app. 

Here are some sweeps you might want to enter.  Good luck!

Win a Wellness Retreat Vacation in Mexico

Win a Trip to the 2018 Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade

Win a $1,000 Macy's Gift Card

Win Amazon Gift Cards Instantly

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

WIP Wednesday-- First Post for 2018

I missed posting last week for the actual first Wednesday of 2018.  It was just an extremely busy day away from home from the time I got out of bed up until after supper time.

I continued to work on the jingle bell blocks for Amelia's first birthday.  Just have the 3rd one to finish putting together before her birthday party on Friday.
I also have continued to crochet here and there on the headbands.

I have been making quite a few of the double towel scarves.  I have more to make, and actually, these will be items I continue to work on throughout the year.  I have quite a few for one lady to choose her 2 from.  Once she is in town and gets hers, the remaining ones will be listed in my Etsy shop.

I have so many things that need to be worked on....way too many to even try to start making a list here.  Time is not on my side for getting much sewing or quilting done.  I wish that would change, but not sure how to make the change happen.   I already have a really late start on getting this blog post out as I got sidetracked cleaning up a corner of the living room because my oldest daughter finally came to get her desk out of that corner.  Sigh!!

Immediately I need to try to make a couple of things that I took patterns for from the last quilt guild meeting.  These will be items that will be for sale in our boutique booth at the Wichita Quilt Show in June.   I also need to get out my sewn 4 patches and sew around to make pin cushions.  These will be given out as a free gift to anyone who buys tickets for a chance to win our opportunity quilt.
I also really want to get started trying to machine quilt that baby blanket.

In the meantime, I am linking up with the following blogs:

WIPs on Wednesdays

Jo's Country Junction:

KatieMae Quilts for BOM weekly linky.

  Quilting is more fun than Housework

Saturday, January 6, 2018

January Swago with Spin & Win

The digital rewards site Swagbucks is offering big payouts during their January "Swago" promotion starting Monday, January 8th at 9am PT and running until Monday, January 15th! Swago is just like bingo, but in this case you're filling out squares as you earn points on their site for doing things you already do online. If you're thinking of trying Swagbucks, this is a great chance to learn all about how the site works and earn bonus points while doing it, meaning you can get more gift cards faster. Here are a few tips: 

  • Each square on your Swago Board will contain an action item to complete. They can be anything from getting a search win, completing a survey, or just visiting one of our popular stores!
  • Once you complete the action item in a particular square the square will change color signifying the action item is complete.
  • You have until 12pm PT/3pm ET on Monday, January 15th to mark off as many squares as possible so use your time wisely.
  • Be mindful of the patterns and their corresponding bonuses located on the right of your Swago Board. The patterns will vary in difficulty and bonus value. Once you’ve achieved a pattern, the corresponding “Submit” button will light up. You can have multiple patterns available for submission, however, you can only submit ONE pattern so choose wisely.
  • Each activity you successfully complete on your Swago Board will give you anywhere from 1-20 spins on the Spin & Win Wheel. PLUS, when you submit your board for a bonus you'll get additional spins. The number of spins will depend on the pattern you complete. The wheel has all sorts of great prizes that you can win, and each spin is a winner!

The Spin & Win Wheel will be available all throughout Swago and you have until 11:59pm PT on Monday, January 15th to use all your spins. 

Fill up your board and then submit your pattern to get even more points - if you can fill in the whole board, you get a 500 SB bonus, which is enough for a $5 gift card from the retailer of your choice.  

Click here right now and click "Join" to get started! If you don't already have a Swagbucks account, you'll be able to quickly sign up; PLUS, if you earn 300 SB before the first of January, you'll get a bonus 300 SB!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Frugal Friday With Marsha -- Into the New Year

Welcome to 2018!

It's that time again to think about my goals.  Basically they are the same every year.  Every year I start out fairly strong with them, then I fizzle out.  I'm sure this is the case with most people, which is why so many now say they don't make any New Year's "Resolutions".

Last year one of my goals was a 365 goal.  The goal to get money or gift cards in 365 times.  I actually didn't come too short of my goal, only by about 21 days.  However, I did have to start adding in found money, even that penny on the ground, to come that close.
I am trying for that same goal again.

I have tons of figuring to do yet on what I got from where, and then figure out what I paid for website upgrades etc.   I will be posting about my earning for the year over the next several weeks. 

I do know that my biggest online earner is no surprise at all to any of you.  It was Swagbucks, which earnings of $1,015.00 for the year.

Join Swagbucks!
You Can Get Free Gift Cards For Shopping, Searching and Discovering What's Online at

I'm standing good on my great start for gifts for this year too.  I've continued to crochet the headbands.  I'm almost done with Amelia's jingle bell blocks for her birthday coming up in 9 days.
I got in the BBQ Utensil set from Amazon that I ordered through Snagshout.   It's a nice set.
I used some of my Recyclebank points to order Preserve Re-Usable Utensil set.  It's not come in yet.  Once it does I will decided if it's something I can order more of for my gift stash.

Another of my goals is to declutter and organize this house.  2018 needs to be the year!! 
I dug out a couple of lists I've started in the past.  I say started because I have tried one of them twice--one time not getting past day 2 and another time I got to day 9.   This is the list I am actually starting with.  It's How to Clean Your House in 20 Minutes a Day for 30 Days.  You can find the article HERE is you would like to check it out for yourself.
Day one was today for me.  It really is surprising just what you can get done in 20 minutes, especially when that is just what you are focusing on.

Apps---so many apps that I "let slide" again throughout the year.  One of those was ShopKick.  I rarely messed with it at all.  At one point in the year my oldest daughter asked me about it.  I opened it and did the discover books for points.  The past couple of months I've been remembering to at least get the walk in points when I've been to Wal-Mart.
I had always gotten Target gift cards from ShopKick.  With the announcement that our Target will close it's doors on February 3rd, I went in and got the final few points I needed to cash in for a $5 Target card.   My intention was to get $5 off of cat food, but when I walked into the store, it's half empty and there was NO cat food left.
I ended up heading to the Christmas clearance aisle and getting a few items for 70 and 90% off.
Adding these items to my gift stash (except the Lindt chocolates, which are being adding to my stomach).

As I said, other apps that I just let slide and didn't do.  Doing so took away a lot of earnings for me.  Over the next several weeks I will also be writing about different apps.  Perhaps when I redeem would be a good time to write about them.

I've gotten too wordy again in this post, so will leave you with a few goodies to check out. 

Free Eggs & Bread at Walmart

Free Larabar at Kroger & Affiliates

30 Free Recyclebank Points

Win a $1000 Yankee Candle Shopping Spree

Monday, January 1, 2018

Get $3 when you sign up for Swagbucks in January

Looking for a way to rebuild your finances after the holidays? 

If you haven't tried Swagbucks before, you can get a bonus $3 for signing up as my referral during January. Swagbucks is a rewards site where you earn points (called 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. 

When you sign up through me this month, you can earn a $3 bonus! Here's how: 

1. Sign up using this link 

2. Earn 300 SB total before 2/1/18. You'll get a $3 (300 SB) bonus for it! 

3. If you want even more bonuses, you'll get a $10 (1000 SB rebate) bonus for making your first shop purchase! That's in addition to the SB you earn for every dollar you spend.  

That's it. It's super easy, and Swagbucks is for real. I use it myself, and I've earned $3,173 since joining Swagbucks.   I cash in for both Amazon and PayPal, but also have cashed in for other gift cards such as Wal-Mart and Burger King!

I love Swagbucks.  If You've not joined yet, you really don't know what you are missing!!

Friday, December 29, 2017

Frugal Friday With Marsha -- I Have a Plan

I have a nice start on next Christmas, yes, thinking way ahead.    I'm also hoping that I can keep up the way I'm already going and fill my tote where I stash gifts.  Some will be used for birthday gifts throughout the year as well.

I started off Christmas Eve by crocheting myself a headband to keep my ears warm in this cold weather.  This prompted me to think that I can make these for the women and girls for next Christmas.  Finding a stash of fancy yarn that I had bought at a yard sale (and had totally forgotten about) was a blessing to help me work on this project.  I can pull this out at various times to work on.

While shopping at Wal-Mart for my gift exchange gift for our family gathering, there was a couple buying pocket knives for stocking stuffers.  I was surprised to see they were only $1.97.  They left just one on the shelf, and I bought it.  My plan is to pick one up whenever I can throughout the year as these will be great to have with the gifts for the guys and the older grandsons.

I also have a plan to try to pick up something at Dollar Tree each time I shop there to add to my gift stash.

The other thing that I already started doing is to look at Snagshout on a regular basis to see what I can get for $3 or less that will make a good gift.  I've already ordered a $14.97 BBQ utensil set for $3.  It should come in today.  You never know what I might find there throughout the year and as of now, I have 7 more Snags that I can use.  This will also help me make better use of the free shipping with my Amazon Prime membership as well!

I think I have a really nice start and fully intend to keep it up!

How was your Christmas?  Are you ready for the New Year?  What plans do you have for saving in the new year?

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

WIP Wednesday -- Actually Have Been Working!

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and now I wish you all also a Happy New Year too!

I finished up the covered composition notebooks and got them all wrapped.  I have 7 left to give to my guild to put in the boutique for sale at the Wichita quilt show in June.

I was told that a lady wants to buy 2 of the double towel scarves from me soon, so I went ahead and got a start on making with the 4 towels that I had on hand.  It ended up that my daughter also brought home a towel from work that she wanted me to make into one of the scarves for her for Christmas too.  I made that one, finished one of the other 4 and have 3 left to just sew up.  I will buy a towel each time I'm out and continue to make these all year least that is my plan.

Amelia will turn 1 on January 14.  I have made each of the grandchildren the jingle bell blocks for either their 1st birthday or first Christmas for years now.  I went to my room and gathered my supplies and have a good start on getting her blocks done.   I intend to make as many as I can and start getting them put into my Etsy shop as well.  I have one set of 2 in there now, but I am going to change it to a set of 3. 

I've been missing my headband to keep my ears warm with it getting so cold outside.  I ran across some fancy yarn in my sewing/craft room, so sat Christmas Eve afternoon and crocheted myself a headband before the evening church service.   Yes, an idea as well to make more for Christmas presents last year.  While in my room yesterday I found more of the fancy yarn, so I am on a roll to getting more made!

Last, but not least, I was finally able to get to the quilt shop and use part of my gift card to buy some 505 spray.  I got this little baby quilt basted......of course now I'm anxious to try to start machine quilting it, but it must wait until I get the towels done.....and I won't be home again until late Thursday night. 

I did not do well at all with the challenge of completing 17 UFO's in 2017, as you can see on the sidebar that I only finished a few of my 17.   I think I will edit that and add 2018, and add more of my UFO's to the list!

Our family Christmas party was awesome as usual.  A little stressful with work schedules and things, but we finally were all together.  Unfortunately I didn't think to take any pictures until after the gifts were opened.  Here are the few shots where I attempted to get in everyone who was there.

Hoping beyond hope to be able to continue crafting and sewing as I have been this past week every week!

I link up with the following blogs:

WIPs on Wednesdays

Jo's Country Junction:

KatieMae Quilts for BOM weekly linky.


Quilting is more fun than Housework

Friday, December 22, 2017

Frugal Friday With Marsha -- Christmas

Christmas is now just 3 days away.  Usually we do our family Christmas gathering on Christmas Eve, or a day or 2 before depending on my brother's schedule as a fire captain.  This year we are actually doing our gathering ON Christmas day in the afternoon.

As usual, I got a late start on the gifts that I made for everyone.  A list of 30 people to give to.  28 of those are getting covered composition notebook covers.  I sewed a total of 35 of the covers (the remainder goes to my quilt guild to put in the boutique at the quilt show).

Each notebook also comes with a pen and a mechanical pencil in the front pocket.  I bought a package of either one each time I shopped at Dollar Tree until I had enough.

I am still in the process of finishing up the stuffed Care Bears for baby Jordan and baby Amelia.  I was blessed to find that panel at a rummage sale where I bought a whole stack of fabric for just $4.
In fact, some of that fabric also was used to make the notebooks.

The other fabrics for the notebooks came from my stash and from a member's sale at the evening quilt guild where I paid 50 cents for each fat quarter.  I also did buy one yard of fabric from the markdown section at the quilt shop.

Buying a little here and a little there is how it has to be done, watching for bargains all the time!

Excuse the same picture as what I posted in my WIP Wednesday post, but I didn't get any others taken.
You will see the Car Bears on the table.  The box is the notebooks I had wrapped up already, plus a stack still to wrap, plus the extras.  You can see the pens and pencils laying there. (The towels on the table are hopefully going to be made into the double towel scarves by Saturday evening as a lady at church has a friend that wants to buy them for gifts if I can get them done.

My wrapping paper somehow got wet, but I used it anyway.  I just can't let anything go to waste, and there was no money to buy new!

I pulled out my tote--the tote where I stash gifts as I find them throughout the year.   I had Eggtastics for most all adults (bought at Dollar Tree for just $1 each)
I had some small things for the children.  I was worried as I didn't have enough for 2 of the teen boys.  I then remembered that I had the miniature Jenga and dominoes that I had picked up at Dollar Tree one day just because I thought they were cute.  Whew!  Just what I needed to fill in the rest of their boxes.   Not much in each box, but it's something extra to go with their notebooks.

I wasn't really going to talk about food this week (believe it or not!), but I don't want you to forget to get your Friday Freebie.

Free Barilla Ready Pasta at Kroger & Affiliates

I also want to talk a little about our "baking day" that my 3 daughters and I had.  We made a day and evening of it on Wednesday to get together and make our treat boxes that we give to each person.    I had boxes that I bought last year half price after Christmas from Dollar Tree and my oldest daughter had a few larger boxes too that she bought this year.
I made  the Ritz crackers with peanut butter in the middle and coated in chocolate.  Heather made banana bread, which she sliced, and she made peanut clusters. She also made "Puppy Chow".   Elizabeth made the treats where you put a Rolo candy on a pretzel and top it with a Pecan half.  She also made peanut butter cookies with Hershey Kisses on top.   Jasmine helped where she was needed.
Each of 31 people get 2 of each thing that we made, plus the bag of Puppy Chow.

For our family Christmas gathering, we each bring food to share.  I can't wait to give these Christmas tortilla chips a try. 


I have gotten really wordy today, so if you are still reading, thanks so much!   I will close by wishing you all a Merry Christmas!!  (and, don't forget to link up your frugal posts this week too)

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