Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Another Money Making Site

So, I've already told you about Swagbucks....and that really is my favorite money-money site, but now I want to tell you about another site that I have been having some luck on.

That is iRazoo.  It's very similar to Swagbucks, has alot of the same offers even.  The payscale is different though.  At Swagbucks, it's basically 1sb equals 1cent.  At iRazoo, it's more like 6pts equals 1 cent, but don't let that scare you away, because the offers are credited to reflect that difference.  So a video is worth 1sb at Swagbucks, but 7pts at iRazoo.  Make sense?

I started the "zoo" on the 12th of January and made $10 by the beginning of February, with little effort and to date have earned $30 and am closing in another $5 in the next couple of days(more than likely).

Just like Swagbucks, there are "dailies" that you can do to help rack up the points.

10pts a day for Games:  All the games at the zoo are Flash, but you don't need to play them.  Just click on games under the "earn points" tab, click on a game and let it sit for about a minute.  I usually open 5 windows at a time and click 5 different games.  Go do something for a minute or two, then click on refresh and do it one more time for all 5 windows.  Voila! 10 pts

5pts for visiting the Offers page: Just for visiting the Offers page under "earn points" you get 5 pts.  Don't even really have to do anything.  Easy Peasy!

Up to 10 Search Wins a Day: Just like Swagbucks you get points for searching, only at the Zoo you can win up to 10 times a day, usually about every 2 hrs.  Wins range anywhere from 10 - 100 pts.  If you get only 3 search wins a day you make at least 30pts a day, but could earn more than that.

These dailies reset every day at Midnight(EST), 11pm(CST), 10pm(MST), 9pm(PST)...so you can get a jump on them in the evening if you live in one of the earlier time zones and that way you won't be overloaded with what needs to be done where.

Those are just to get you started.  Follow their Facebook page for tips on offers that credit (http://www.facebook.com/irazoo) to make even more points.

Now, where Swagbucks has limits on how many prizes you can get in a month, the Zoo does not. You can get a $5 AGC(Amazon Gift Card) for 3000pts, $10 for 6000pts and so on.   It really doesn't benefit you any to save your points for the higher value since there is no limit, so cash out as soon as you reach 3000 or soon thereafter.  Prizes usually take about 30 days to receive, which is another reason you don't want to wait.  /the sooner you order, the sooner you get your money.

So, what's stopping you from starting today?!  Get on board the money-making train!  Click on this link and sign up today: IRazoo.com

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

smiley360.com—Be Heard. Be Happy.

My latest adventure is smiley360.com.  It's a site where you qualify for samples of products based on your lifestyle, likes, family structure, etc...that are then sent to you..FREE!!  You then get to try them out for yourself.  In exchange you agree to do a review of the product, good or bad!

Get samples and give reviews. Who doesn't love free stuff! Just click on this link and sign up!


smiley360.com—Be Heard. Be Happy.

So be on the lookout for my reviews in future blog posts!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Homeschooling has it's good and bad days

I've been homeschooling for over 14 years.  14 years!!!!  My oldest son is 19 and a junior in college.  He was  an ideal student to teach.  Sure, we had our frustrating days, what homeschooling parent doesn't, but he was also self-motivated.  For homeschooling this is a wonderful trait and makes your life so much easier.   I wouldn't come to truly appreciate how much until my 13th year of homeschooling.

My two boys are wonderful boys, but two very different personalities.  My oldest is a mild-mannered, easy-going, nothing phases him kind of guy.  My youngest is completely the opposite and I mean COMPLETELY the opposite!  Having the first child you homeschool be so mellow lulls you into a false sense of security and how easy homeschooling can be.  I honestly think, that if I had homeschooled my second son first, I probably NEVER would have attempted it again.  He has no motivation and sees no benefit to his future from doing school.  He wants to draw and doesn't understand what Science, History, and Algebra have to do with Art.  But unfortunately, as we all know, there are certain requirements to graduate from high school.

One thing I have come to learn though is flexibility and adaptabilty.  It's taken me a long time and there have been many struggles, but I've learned that my boys do not learn the same way.  My oldest was okay with the hands-off approach and even preferred it.  My youngest, well he likes the hands-off approach as well, but that didn't mean he would get his work done.  If left to his own devices he would pass the time doodling and drawing, ask me how I know.  LOL  Needless to say, when school is in session with my now 13 year old son, we are at the kitchen table, with me repeatedly saying, "Focus", "Read", "Do your work" or some other command.  If I don't, then nothing ever gets done.

This year has been my hardest so far.  So hard that I've considered throwing in the towel.....numerous times.  There were more days than not in the first 3 months that ended in tears and frustration on both our parts.  I had no idea how I was going to make it through the year.  My only glimmer of light was that at least we were a year ahead, so if it was too big of a struggle, we could always do it over.......not something I really wanted to consider though.  It would make me feel like a failure if I did and I knew it.......it didn't mean I was, but it's hard to convince yourself of that.  Then came Christmas break, well December break.  We travel back to Colorado in December, so we just take that month off, or most of it off. (With homeschooling, you have that flexibility.  I start in August so that we can do this.) 

It was over this break that I had an epiphany, if you will.  I was talking to a good friend of mine, who is a Pastor's wife and homeschooled her three boys as well.  She pointed out that he doesn't need to take all those hard Math classes and Science classes, just the basics.  Especially since his interests lay in the artistic field.  I don't know why I didn't think of that myself.  I had been telling people for years that homeschooling is flexible to the needs of the child, yet here I was not being flexible about what I taught.   Sometimes you are just too close to see the big picture and I had never even considered NOT teaching him the higher and harder classes.  All I kept thinking was HOW was I ever going to teach them to him.  It was after this realization that the fog began to clear and I could see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I could continue homeschooling my boy, I could make it work and everything was going to be all right.

Now, mind you, we still have our struggles, and frustrations still happen, but they don't last for as long and we are able to work past them.  I've learned, well, I'm learning to adapt my teaching skills to his ability and learning style.  I haven't gotten it all figured out, probaby never will, but knowing that I don't HAVE to teach those upper classes makes it that much easier to handle.   As always, I try to take it one day at a time and now it's easier to do just that.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Why you dirty rat?!?!

Rats!!  I hate rats!  I didn't used to hate rats, in fact my older sister had two pet rats: Socrates and Ben....just like in the movie "Willard"  I used to love to hold them when I was younger.  Unfortunately, those aren't the kinds of rat I'm dealing with while living in Arizona.  We have Kangaroo rats out here, called that because they have big back feet and sometimes jump/hop around like a kangaroo.  They really are kind of cute in their own way.

We also have pack rats, they aren't as cute looking and they are the ones I dislike the most!  They have the same big ears as the kangaroo rat, but definitely have those beady little eyes rats are famous for!  These rats are the trouble-makers!!

They like to build nests....in air conditioning units, engines, rat poision containers.  That's been my experience at least.  We used to have a pest control service, but decided not to continue it($235/yr!!) and I'm beginning to think we might have to take it up again.  Did you know that dog food counteracts the poison in those green rat poison tablets?  I didn't until the day the pest guy came and said that the rat was building a nest in the poison container and asked if we had any dog food left outside.  At the time we had a dog which sometimes couldn't keep her food down, because as it turns out she was very sick, but I digress.  Needless to say he had to switch to the "strong" stuff that you couldn't even handle without gloves.  I'm not paying to feed rats after all! 

That seemed to do the trick and we were lulled back into a sense of peace with Mother Nature, so we stopped the Pest service.  BIG MISTAKE!!  Over the summer they decided to make nests in our air conditioning units. Yes, I said nests....plural!  As if that wasn't bad enough they also decided to chew the wires, causing the air conditioning not to blow any cool air.  Do you know what it's like without air conditioning in August?!  Thankfully, they could repair it the next day!    The hubby set up a nice electrical fence around the units to help keep them away.  We just have to remember to turn it off, when we get the units serviced.  I don't think the a/c guy would appreciate that "shocking" finding.

Then this November the rats decided since they couldn't get into the air conditioning unit they would make their nest in the engine of my van.  I only found this out when I went to get an oil change and they checked my cabin filter and came out with two handfuls of junk(leaves, seeds, cactus, cloth).  I  had noticed my car smelled like popcorn and never knew why.  Apparently the seeds for the Saguaro tree smell like that as they get roasted on a hot engine.   Upon further examination under the hood by the husband found a mish-mash of wires, that about an hour or two later he had fixed.  Thankfully, none of those were wires that had to do with my car working.  This is similar to what we found:

I started parking my car in different spots after this hoping to keep the rats at bay!  If only it was that simple.  Then in January, we traded the van and got a new vehicle.  I parked it in a different spot, but apparently not often enough.  My engine light came on last Friday.  Great!  What's wrong with my new baby?!  Took it to the dealer who politely informed me I had a rodent problem!  Not again!!!  They had apparently started chewing one of the wires, but hey, no nest building!  $175 later(that's another story....ripoff artists!) she is running fine and I have put mothballs in my engine! That is supposed to keep them away.  It better!

On a side note, did you know that all new car's wiring systems are coated in vegetable oil?  They used to be coated in chemicals, but not anymore.   Which begs the question, who's bright idea was that!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Football season is over! Bring on Nascar!!

For those that didn't today was Super Bowl Sunday or what I like to call Commercials and Pizza day!  Every year I look forward to the Super Bowl, not for the game...well, sometimes for the game, but mostly for the commercials.   I did watch the game today and enjoyed it.  It was a good game and definitely a nail biter at the end.  The half-time show wasn't half bad either.  Madonna did a good job for a 53 year old doing cartwheels and dancing while singing.

I was disappointed in the commercial selection though.  I remember when the commercials were memorable through the whole game and you talked about them for weeks after.  Now, we are lucky to get 1 or 2 that we might remember for a day.  I miss the days of the Budweiser Clydesdales, frogs and chameleons.  This game really only had the good commercials in the first half.  The second half...well, I don't really remember them.  Is it that hard to come up a good commercial, a funny commercial?

Oh well, football is over for the season which means it's almost time for NASCAR!!!  As Darrell Waltrip says: Boogity, Boogity, Boogity!  I always get excited for it the beginning of the season, but it wains as the season goes on.  I'm the only one in my family that watches it, so it makes it hard to keep the interest and let's be honest.....sometimes it is just cars going in a circle for 500 miles.  When there isn't any passing going on, it can get boring watching follow the leader.  I tend to get a nap in on Sunday's.  LOL  Hopefully, this year will have some exciting races to watch.  Would you believe I've never been to a race though and I'm only about an hour, at the most, from a major racetrack.  One of these days, I really should go......could this be the year??

Let's go racing boys!!

Friday, February 3, 2012

No more braces!

Today ended the 2.5 year process of my youngest's (13) adventure into orthodonture.   He went in as a little boy, well a little boy to me, with a crew cut and came out a teenager with shaggy hair!  He got to start his adventure with the ever popular palette expander.  He's not big on pain or discomfort, so I was concerned with how it was going to go.  Other than the application(and removal) it really wasn't too bad for him other than some minor achey-ness.  He only had to do that for 6 months, but he talked funny the whole time! LOL

Next came what I like to call the Terminator stage.  As soon as the palette expander was removed, we moved right onto the Herbst device.  It's used in place of  head gear.  Head gear pushes the top jaw back, or keeps it from moving forward, so the lower jaw can line up.  The Herbst device actually pushes the lower jaw forward, allowing the back of the jawbone to grow into the space, therein keeping the jaw in the proper position.

The Herbst device also is not condusive to opening your mouth too wide, otherwise the hinge and pin come apart.  Thankfully, that only happened 3 times in the year that he wore this.  My poor son was in pain for almost the whole entire 1st month.  The little screws on the bottom ended up almost making holes in his cheeks.  It was a long year and he was glad to see that go!

Finally, we moved onto braces, phew!  The hard part was OVER!  Other than slight discomfort after wire changes, this was a piece of cake.  Even the removal was easy.  I left for 10 mins to make a phonecall, came back and they were off!  So now we are to the wonderful world of retainers, which his looks more like Invsalign, than a retainer.

Now if he would only get a haircut!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

I'm at home all day already, I might as well earn some money!

I'm a stay at home mom that homeschools.  I've done this for over 14 years.  One day I saw some posts on Facebook about this site called Swagbucks.  It's a site that pays you to mostly watch ads, along with other things.  Finally, one day I decided I should check it out....it was free to sign-up, so what would it hurt. That was the middle of October.   I didn't really do anything with it until the beginning of November and then I guess you would say, or at least my family would say, I threw myself into it.

By the end of November I had earned $50 and I was addicted. I earned another $150 in December even with 2 weeks of limited access because of Christmas vacation, and $100 in January.  So, in 3 months time I earned $300!!  It's the 2nd of February and already have enough to get $10 more.  Nothing to get rich off of, but it will make Christmas and birthdays this year nicer.  All of this was earned in Amazon Gift Cards(AGC).  You can redeem your "swagbucks" for all kinds of different gift cards, paypal and other items.  I just do so much shopping at Amazon and they have the best redemption value of "swagbuck" to dollar ratio.  I do need to say that they did have a sale on gift cards in December for the holidays, so I was able to pick up some higher value gift cards that I might not have been able to get.   They continue to have sales on different things everyday, some good, some not so good.  It all depends on what you are looking for.

So, you're asking what all do I have to do to earn some money at this site?  Do I have to spend alot of time on this?  I work all day, how am I supposed to make money with so little time?   All I will say is, the more you put into it, the more you will get out of it.....BUT, you don't have to spend alot of time on it and you could easily make $10-$15 a month.....that's an extra $120-$180 a year.....just for doing the very basics, all of which would take no more than about an hour a day, if that much.

The currency Swagbucks pays you in is called "swagbucks"...go figure!  LOL  1 swagbuck(or sb) is worth about 1 cent. You can get a $5 AGC for 450sb....this is their best priced item and you can get up to 5 of them in a month, with a limit of 2 a day.  This is their standing rule for anything you get from them.....no more than 2 of any item a day and no more than 5 of one kind of item a month. 

So, what are the basics you can do to earn swagbucks?  Right now there are 5 daily's that you can do.

1sb for installing the Swagbucks toolbar (you can find this at their site and everyday when you log onto the internet you get credit)

1sb for taking the Daily Poll (just pick the best answer, sometimes it's like throwing a dart)

2sb for doing the NOSO - no obligation special offers....you just click skip or next page until you get to the end....where you'll have to enter a code word(s), sometimes after a video clip....we call this a captcha

10sb for playing games - you get 2 sb for every 2 games that you play, but you must hit the return to games button to get the credits.   Most of the time you only have to pay for about 1-1.5 minutes.  I like to play Swaggle, it's a match-3 type game.

3sb for watching a video in your inbox - You have a mailbox at Swagbucks and everyday they send you earning opportunites.  One of these is to watch a video.  You just have to tell them if you saw an ad at the beginning or not.  Most of the time after clicking on the video link, you can open the question link and choose "Didn't see an ad" and you'll get credit.

That's 17sb's right there, only 13 more sb's a day and you'll be on your way to $10 AGC a month!  The site will also randomly award swagbucks for doing searches.  Now keep in mind this is RANDOM and not a guarantee, but you can usually get 2-3 search wins in a day averaging 7sb each using their search engine. Also, almost everyday, except weekends, they will have a code that is usually good for about an hour worth anywhere from 4-12sb.  Sometimes you can get its, sometimes you can't as it's never given a the same time.

If you have the time, they have surveys you can take that are worth 25-400sb ea....as long as you qualify.  There are special offers you can do.  There are other videos you can watch for 1-3sb each.  If you have an adroid device they have an app that will get you 50sb a day for watching videos.  One great site that a person made to help beginners is www.swagging101.info.  It's got some of the same information I mentioned and more.  It's to good to read so you know some of the rules, like no cheating, no posting of codes and more.

You can use the link on the side of this page to sign-up today and get started earning money.  If you have any questions, ask me!  I want you to succeed like I have.  By the way, I even got my 75yr old mother started and in her first month she earned $15 in AGC and did mostly the basics with some extras thrown in every now and then.

Oh yeah, one final thing before I stop.....if you do decide you want to give this a try, make sure you an email address for junk mail to go to(yahoo mail or gmail, etc) that is seperate from your regular account.  This will come in handy for any special offers you may want to try.  Also, Google Voice is free and good to have as well.   If you are on Facebook they have a great fan page at http://www.facebook.com/swagbucks  Good luck and Happy Swagging!