As we wrap up 2010, here are some 10’s I experienced this year:
Ten ways I made extra money:
- Instant Cash Sweepstakes
- Pinecone Research
- Recycled cans & bottles for California CRV
- Entered blog giveaways & instant win sweepstakes
- Sent in for rebates
- Sold unwanted items on Amazon
- Earned interest on savings
- Let my investments grow
Ten ways I saved money:
- Played The Drugstore Game
- Used coupons
- Shopped wisely at the daily deal sites
- Planned menus
- Monitored our budget and spending
- Used my gift box and wrapping center
- Shopped online using cash back sites*
- Bought gift cards at the grocery store*
- Communicated with my family
- Assertively contacted customer service when I wasn’t satisfied
Ten ways I helped the environment:
- Used reusable shopping bags (I’ve gotten pretty good about remembering them!)
- Used less paper goods
- Washed full loads of laundry
- Washed full loads of dishes
- Printed less paper (Screengrab and Snagit are two of my favorite tools)
- Used cold water instead of hot or warm when appropriate
- Switched to a steam mop that uses water instead of chemicals
- Bought a lot of organic produce and meat, and shopped at local farmer’s markets
- Used reusable water bottles
- Didn’t buy a lot of new things
Ten ways I gave to others:
- Donated money to my favorite causes
- Donated material goods to various charities and fund raisers
- Lent money through Kiva.org
- Gave lots of free and cheap drugstore and grocery items to friends in need
- Sent packages through AnySoldier
- Volunteered at my sons’ schools
- Supported friends in difficult moments (mostly by listening)
- Shared information I’d researched (especially about schools, but also about saving money)
- Did some random acts of kindness
- Played the Free Rice Game to donate rice through the World Food Programme (fun!)
Ten of my favorite things:
- Favorite video game: Batman: The Brave and the Bold. It may be a kid’s video game, but it was the exact right level of difficulty for me (I can’t handle games that require a great deal of fine motor control).
- Favorite song: Shout It by Mitchel Musso. Yes, he’s that Mitchel Musso, aka Oliver from Hannah Montana. But I love this song, and so does my four-year-old!
- Favorite recipe: The master recipe in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I almost always have some of this dough in my fridge, and I use it not just for bread but for pizza almost weekly. It’s great on the grill or in the oven.
- Favorite shopping promo: Super double coupons at Ralphs. I went to Ralphs five days in a row. (And I’ve only gone a few times since then, so maybe they’ll notice people are shopping less and bring the promo back?)
- Favorite sporting event: The World Cup. Living in Los Angeles, I don’t have a football team to root for, and I’m not a big basketball, baseball or hockey fan. But I watched the World Cup almost every day for the month that it was on – thank you ESPN!
- Favorite charity: The USO. It’s been my favorite charity for some time now, but every time I get an issue of their quarterly magazine, On Patrol, I have a renewed sense of awe and appreciation for the dedication and sacrifices of those who serve in the military. A close second is AnySoldier, which enables me to send care packages to soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as other places.
- Favorite freebies site: Freebies 4 Mom. I find Heather to be very reliable and trustworthy, so her site is the one I rely on for free Huggies Enjoy the Ride Rewards and Pampers Gifts to Grow codes and great photo deals.
- Favorite free Android app: Kindle for Android. Actually, voice navigation in Google Maps is my favorite Android app, but that seems so obvious that I wanted to pick something else and the Kindle app is my second favorite. I always have my Droid with me when I’m out and about, and the Kindle app means I always have a book with me too.
- Favorite trend: Daily deal sites. Groupon rejected a buyout offer from Google, and LivingSocial got a huge investment from Amazon. It looks like daily deal sites are here to stay, and I’m happy about that. Use them wisely and you can save lots of money.
- Favorite compliment: Whenever someone told me how great my boys are 🙂
What are your favorites from 2010?
*Topic for a future post!