Through the years we have acquired many things for free. The types of things we have found include tools, furniture, clothes, toys, decor, collectibles, construction materials and much more. The sources for these free things have included friends, family, roadsides, exploring old farms, freecycle websites, clean-out jobs, retail promotions and chance. Although there are probably hundreds of items we have acquired over the years, I will only be able to share a fraction of the things we already have. I will be sure to document all future finds.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Store Membership and Reward Cards Get You Free Things!

     When store rewards and membership cards first started, I was resistant. I thought it was not fair to get a discount just because I had the card.  I thought that if the stores could afford to give the lower prices to some people, then they should just lower their prices and sell at that price to everyone.  Well, I have learned that it is smarter to get the cards than to avoid them.  I still really hate them for the reason mentioned, and I also hate how many I have to carry. They require a huge wallet and a separate case to hold them.  My son is actually more annoyed than me because his wallet is bursting with cards from the pet store, movie theater, Subway, and more.  It is also almost impossible to keep them organized.  I will ALWAYS have the card out and with my payment method BEFORE I get into a store.  I refuse to be embarassed at a checkout while searching for a card. 
   Now for the positive side of having these cards....they get you free things! I used my local convenient store "milk card" to get a free half-gallon of milk today. You get a free half-gallon after buying 5 gallons.        
     We go to only one restaurant when we go out.  We earn points and after several visits we earn enough points to cover a free lunch for two! Most of the reward cards are free and you just have to have them scanned with your purchase to build rewards. There are cards for grocery stores that give you coupons.
    I currently have over 20 membership/reward cards.  The only one I pay for is Barnes and Noble.  The $25/year is worth the savings per purchase I make. 
   If the stores or restaurants you use have a membership or rewards card, it is only a minor inconvenience to carry them for the rewards you get.  If you want free things or discounts, they are a very easy way to get them!       

Monday, March 25, 2013

Get Free Samples!

     The big trend of  extreme couponing is well known.  I use coupons but I do not go to the extremes that the "professionals" do.  I would like to, but I just don't have the time that is needed to organize the extreme savings.   I do like to get free things though.  I have started a "sample stash" with the things I can get for free from companies.  I think I will see how many I can get between now and the end of August and have myself a "Sample September."   
     One of the best  sites I have found is .  This is one of the companies that puts coupons in the Sunday papers. They are reputable.  Their website allows you to request free samples one time each quarter.  You can request all of the samples and coupons they offer each time.  I have done this twice so far.  It is so exciting to get my sample package in the mail.  One came today! The picture contains the samples from this site plus a few I got from other sources. Take some time to search online for other sources of freebies.
     Be sure to look for samples wherever you go too. One source for free samples is your Doctor's office!  At the dermatologist, we got some lotion samples.  At the dentist we got dental floss and toothpaste samples. Grocery stores also often have samples of food .  If you time it right, the samples can fill you up in place of a lunch!
     Be on the lookout and challenge yourself to find a free sample of something each week.