Walmart + Freebies = Bliss

July 17, 2009 at 1:49 pm | Posted in Freebies | Leave a comment
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Heinz Ketchup (one bottle) + Gatorade (one bottle) + Twix candy (3 bars) + iPod Touch case (set of three) = $2.71

Yes, I’m that good. Wondering how I worked that one out? You see, I’m a self-described freebie fiend. I’m constantly searching to find new discounts, coupons, and samples to request. You would be surprised to find out how many businesses have adopted online networking, and are using it to promote their services while offering specials to fans and followers.

These businesses are the reason I was able to march right into Wal-Mart and come out with a bunch of random items- all for nearly nothing. There had been promotions by Heinz and MnM’s that provided me with free coupons for their products. In support of Men’s Health Month, Gatorade mailed me a coupon for a free 20 oz bottle as well. Now, as far as the iPod case, it was full-price- but a nice graduation gift card took care of it!

Want to take advantage of companies’ promotions? Here’s a few simple tips:

1. Add a step to your daily routine. Pick a few of the best freebie blogs, and visit them frequently to increase your chances. Many promotions are only available on specific dates or until coupons run out- so make sure you check often!

My two picks:

Freebies For Mom. Not a mom? That’s ok… I’m not either! Blogger Heather has  turned a small website into a national phenomenon (which has even been featured on national tv). She is my top choice for information regarding freebies, sweepstakes, coupons, and blog giveaways.

Equally as informative, however, is Goob at Hey, It’s Free! He focuses solely on freebies and tends to find those off the beaten path.

Between these two blogs, you’ll be well informed about freebies!

2. Take advantage of social networking sites. Twitter and Facebook are loaded with corporate accounts, and many profiles are trying to lure you in with freebies! When you have a few moments, search Facebook for groups with your city’s name- then join all of the restaurant groups that catch your eye! (I’ve even gotten some free meals from Facebook-only local promotions!)

3. Keep an eye out in your community. From the grocery store to the hair salon, many businesses offer free trials, coupons, and also giveaways for their new products. Every once in a while I like to walk around the department store cosmetic counters- they often have many drawings, and most people don’t even notice the entry boxes! Obviously, the less-known a freebie is, the better chance you have of obtaining it.

Just for kicks, here’s a couple of my favorite freebies to date:

1. Protection for every OMG moment. This Degree deodorant sample is literally the size of my thumb. You might call that stingy, but I’ve made it super useful by carrying it in my purse for those literal OMG moments. Running out the door, 15 minutes late- thank you, Degree.

2. Moooooo. Featured in my previous post, Moo prints business cards (among other things), and is such a hands-on, customer-oriented business that I just love working with them. They offer a 10-pack sample of business cards, and you can find my readers-only discount code right here.

3. Flash-frozen. Once I actually received a packet of soup mix (meat included) that supposedly has a shelf-life of 30+ years. Yikes! I guess companies are still cashing in on that Y2K madness. (No, I haven’t tried it yet… slightly afraid to if I’m perfectly honest!)

Time for some reader-interaction! Post about a freebie you’ve received- whether it’s your most used, funniest, or if it was just plain useless! I’ll pick a few comments to feature in an upcoming post- and I’ll shout-out about your websites =)

What’s more important… really?

July 15, 2009 at 2:21 pm | Posted in The World Around Us | 2 Comments
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I’m a fan of the Commercial Appeal Facebook page, and I follow it on Twitter as well. While sometimes slightly biased, CA usually does a good job of presenting local and national news in a prompt, professional, and concise way.

I was (not so) surprised to read today about the closing of Family Services of the Mid-South. What has served as a major counseling and crisis help center since 1893 has now shut its doors due to lack of funding.

While not surprised, because it’s quite obvious people are a. more selfish/stingy than ever before with money, and b. the city of Memphis has never had its financial priorities straight, this news saddens me.

Drug crises. Child abuse. Domestic and sexual violence. Suicide. These are just some of the crucial life events that Family Services assisted to prevent, and also (sadly more often) deal with the aftermath.

  • Every 5 seconds someone is sexually assaulted
  • Over 12 million American adult women have been victims of forcible rape.
  • In 2006 alone, Memphis city police reported 5,898 cases of assault.
  • Suicide takes the lives of nearly 30,000 people a year.
  • While many people will simply blame the city, our incompetent mayor, and the “selfish rich,” I have to wonder about the rest of us. We have houses, don’t we? And food? I don’t mean to get on a rant about giving away all that we have, but there comes a point where we really have to evaluate how attached we are to our possessions. Check this out: As of last Thursday, the city of Los Angeles had already collected about $17,000 from ordinary citizens to help deter the cost of Michael Jackson’s memorial service (which cost roughly a million dollars, by the way). And in 2006, nearly 82 million dollars were spent on cigarettes.

    …Some of you are feeling pretty good right now. After all, you don’t care about Michael Jackson and you’ve never smoked in your life. Need I point out the hundreds of dollars each person spends MONTHLY on items they don’t really need? Movies/fast food/the 60th pair of shoes/STARBUCKS? We all waste money.

    Don’t get me wrong. We all have the right to spend our money as we please. But when one of the few places in Memphis for abuse and rape victims to safely escape to is closed because no one cares enough to forgo one cappuchino a week, it’s time to rethink how much of an impact we’re truly having on the world.

    Please consider donating your time or your money to one of Memphis’ non-profits. Why take the time to complain about our city’s downfall and crime statistics if you’re not even willing to roll up your sleeves and help clean up?

    Do something to help your community? Please comment and share your story!

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