Friday, 22 May 2015

The Money Shed

I'm somewhat reluctant to write this post as part of me wants to hide this absolute gem of a website away and keep it all for myself but the owner Jon and his fantastic site The Money Shed  deserve to be shouted about.

If you are looking to work from home and make some extra money online then this is the site for you, you won't find any dodgy 'fill a million envelopes for a quid' type work, only real genuine earning opportunities, and like minded people sharing their experiences, advice and ideas about earning online.

I could absolutely kick myself for not finding this site sooner, I always thought I was pretty clued up on survey sites, I even managed to pay for most of last Christmas between surveys and competition wins but I could have paid for Christmas twice over and kept our car going if I had signed up for all the opportunities I've found in one week alone on The Money Shed !

The forum itself is a friendly place and not intimidating at all, I'm looking forward to getting more involved in the online earning community, the owner is really friendly too and the site is an absolute credit to him, he also blogs with some great advice at The Money Shed Blog 

I'm feeling very excited and motivated about online earning, now I just need to find the spare hours in the day to keep up !

Why not pop across to The Money Shed and have a look around, if you like what you see sign up and start your online earning journey.

                                                                     Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Angela x


Thursday, 21 May 2015

The Dreaded Threenager !


I used to be one of those people who'd roll their eyes at the trendy 'in' words, this was no exception when I first heard someone use the word 'Threenager' I remember thinking how silly once you get past the terrible two's it's all plain sailing.

The sixteen year age gap between my youngest and oldest must have dulled my memory because I had totally forgotten about this stage, where your lovely sweet toddler becomes a demanding unreasonable diva in the blink of eye for the most bizarre of reasons.


                                     Image courtesy of Clare Bloomfield at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


At breakfast time all hell could break loose because you only put 16 Cheerios in the bowl and they wanted 17 or you brought the wrong spoon, only the special one will do which you spend 10 minutes looking for only to realise you didn't do the washing up last night, or they want to wear a swimming costume and wellingtons to nursery even though it's December and the coldest day of the year so far !

You spend all afternoon arguing about the fact that your threenager needs to see the moon, all the assurances that they can see it once it's night time are just no use they NEED to see the moon now because someone at school saw the moon so they must do the same right this minute.

You try so hard to stifle your laughter, because no matter how demanding they are being some of their theories and demands are highly amusing and quite cleverly thought out.

They insist you must leave them alone to go to the toilet by themselves even though you must be accompanied to the bathroom at all times.

You get told at least five times a day that you are a 'naughty mummy' and the phrase 'I want' is replaced with 'I need'.

You will be amazed and horrified at the extent of their over active imagination, they will tell people that you left them in the road on the way home from school or that you left them at home alone (true story).

When you ask for a cuddle they will insist they are a big kid now and you can't have one, this of course does not apply if they require a cuddle.

I've found that the best way to navigate this stage of parenting is with good humour and infinite amounts of patience and of course to keep a record as proof for when they are grown up and have kids of their own.


Do you own a threenager ? what's the funniest thing they have ever done or said ? leave me a comment I love hearing from you.

Angela x

Don't Replace It Repair It !

Although I try to live a frugal life there are always areas that I don't quite get it right, I've been working on improving those areas.

I used to be the kind of person that if an appliance broke or wasn't working how I wanted it to I would replace it, usually using a credit card (slaps hand) but not anymore ! My new motto is repair, repair, repair and ONLY replace as a last resort.

I've had my Dyson vacuum cleaner for around four years and last year I noticed it wasn't picking up as well as it used to, on top of that the extendable cleaning hose got a tear in it which I patched up with masking tape, every time I got the hoover out I would grumble about how rubbish it was, it got to the point where I would dread hovering and I even started looking at buying a new one and trying to justify adding it to the already over-stretched credit card.

After months of griping about it I had a light bulb moment, instead of moaning I knew I should do something more pro-active and set about searching online for a solution, I feel like an absolute idiot for not doing this sooner. I found a tutorial on YouTube which explained that the first thing I should do with loss of suction was to check for blockages and remove the filters and clean them, I'm ashamed to admit this but I didn't even know my Dyson had filters !

                                       Image courtesy of Smarnad at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

After doing what the tutorial suggested my vacuum is now back to picking up brilliantly and I've learnt a very valuable lesson about being more clued up about the items I own and how to maintain them.

The next part of my light bulb moment was finding out if the hose was replaceable as by this point it had that much masking tape on it was in danger of not fitting back onto the main body of the vacuum anymore, after a quick search and comparing the best price I found the right part and paid £16 which is far better than the hundreds I would have paid to replace the whole thing.

I feel very proud of myself for taking a step back, thinking logically instead of impulsively and being pro-active instead of reactive.

There are of course times when repairing isn't possible or the most cost effective thing to do, our oven recently broke and after doing some research we discovered that it would cost only £10 less to replace the part than to buy another oven, sometimes situations like this can't be avoided but you can give yourself peace of mind by exhausting every avenue first.



Have you been in this situation yourself ? How much have you saved by repairing ? leave me a comment below I would love to hear from you.

Angela x

Monday, 18 May 2015

Money Mondays - Cashback Websites


Being the money saving bargain hunter that I am I never buy anything without first checking if I can get a discount and if I can by it through a cashback website to earn some money back.

I also check the cashback sites regularly as they have great offers to earn cash without spending a penny.

I thought I would tell you about two of my favourite cashback sites, TopCashBack and Quidco .

Online Cashback

If you sign up with TopCashBack at the moment they will give you 500 free Tesco Clubcard points.

They claim to be the UK's most generous cashback site and some of the offers are fantastic, you can also register your credit or debit card for cashback on your in-store purchases too !

I love Quidco

I love Quidco because you can cash out anything over £1, last year I saved up all my earnings and bought some Christmas presents and I also paid for Daisy's Halloween costume.

The site is really easy to use and has lots of brilliant offers, one of my favourite features is the ClickSnap feature where you can earn cashback on your grocery items.

Do you use cashback sites ? If not then what are you waiting for !

Angela x

*Disclaimer: This post contains referral links*

Sunday, 17 May 2015

A Simple Sunday At The Duck Pond

Today has been one of those days where everything seems right with the world, the past few weeks I've really got on top of all the niggling little things that have been bothering me for ages, the house has been cleaned and decluttered within an inch of it's life, I'm up to date with all my comping, paperwork and financial bits and pieces and I'm feeling more productive than I have in a long time.

This afternoon we decided to have a walk to a local pond to feed the ducks, Daisy was so excited and it just goes to show the most simple inexpensive things make little ones happy.

Our car isn't on the road at the moment which means making the effort to get out as a family even more important, we are lucky to live in an area where there are lots of green spaces right on our doorstep and I'm determined to make the most of them this Summer.

We spotted a couple of different varieties of ducks at the pond, saw two squirrels and enjoyed the Spring flowers that are still in bloom, Daisy loved feeding the ducks and Jake enjoyed eating the bread instead of sharing with the ducks.





It's been a lovely end to a relaxing weekend and I'm ready to see what his week will bring.

Angela x

Webster's Week In Wins 13th-17th May 2015

This week has been a good week for prizes and freebies, I've upped my game recently entering more comps than usual and filling in every survey that's landed in my inbox, last year I managed to almost pay for Christmas with prizes and vouchers and I'm determined to do even better this year.

I had a lovely winning email on Thursday for some books that I really wanted for Daisy, it's brilliant when you win something you were going to buy.

I won this Swing Ball set from the daily Highland spring competition, it's still open for entries you can enter here until June 29th.

I also won a smoke alarm, not the most exciting prize but very practical.

 

This selfie stick was a surprise, I'm not sure where I won it from but it will be great for entering photo competitions.



On the survey side I cashed out a £15 Amazon voucher, a £10 Argos voucher from Consumer Pulse and £8 cash from Pinecone, all of this goes towards the Christmas pot.

Chris won a £10 M&S voucher from work so we've added that to the pot too.


I'm really enjoying challenging myself to pay for Christmas, I will be back next week to share with you again.

Angela x

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Frugal Spring Cleaning

The last few weeks I've been in full on Spring cleaning mode, I've got a new daily cleaning schedule in place and everywhere has been decluttered within an inch of it's life which has meant I can look at each room in the house and list the niggling little jobs that need doing.

I'm working on the bathroom this week and one of the things that drives me nuts in there is the shower caddy, it's a wall mounted chrome double tier and is constantly rusting up (chrome might look pretty but it's porous and impractical) , I didn't want to spend a fortune on cleaning products so did a little research for cheap homemade alternatives.

I made a cleaning paste by mixing  half a lemon and a few tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda, I added water until I got a paste consistency.


I used a piece of scrunched up foil on the caddy first to remove and flaking bits of rust then applied the paste generously over both tiers, I left the paste on for twenty minutes.


                                                                      Before


                                                                    After

        
I wiped the paste off and used a scouring pad to remove what was left and I'm really pleased with the results, apart from a couple of hard to reach nooks it's worked brilliantly.

Not wanting to waste the other half of the lemon I popped squeezed the juice into a bowl of water and put it into the microwave for ten minutes, the steam makes those stubborn flecks of food lift off really easily and it leaves the kitchen smelling lovely.     

Do you have any frugal cleaning tips to share ? I would love to hear them, leave me a comment below.

Angela x