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wow, today I got a lot of new-to-me stuff from a friend whose yard sale was rained out. Lot of kitchen utensils I needed (staying in a vacation rental, I did not want to ask the owner for a lot of small items), big stock pot, mixing bowl, glass loaf pan, cast iron fry pan (going home with ME), hand crank flash light and radio, new. TV tray.
 

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still getting martha stewart living mag, supposed to until Oct '13, have no idea why


sample ground coffee
sample face tint

used my register rewards to buy
gallon milk
16# sugar
full size toothpaste

battery operated face cleaning brush
full size aromatherapy body wash from BBW
2 full size bubble bath from BBW
full size body lotion from BBW
$5 starbucks gc

a goody bag from my favorite beauty gal at wags--
ink pen
sample body lotion
sample fructis shampoo
sample fructis conditioner
travel size pantene shampoo
sample centrum
travel size face towelettes (5)
full size mens shave gel
full size body spray
 

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2013 calendar from a local business
AXE gift set
5 mini cups of oreo cookies
 

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$50 Amazon Gift card
$50 PayPal
8 cepacal samples
a sex lubricant sample

If Christmas gifts count.....we received a meat slicer, a tea pot for the stove that whistles when it is ready,
EEOV and a dispenser, an electric single burner (the intent was for me to use it for my caner but it is too small), 5 pounds of bologna to go with the meat slicer and 2 night at a hotel.
 

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Adding:

* full sized tub of cottage cheese
* 2 x 1lb boxes of catelli smart pasta
* 1 x fresh pomegranate
 

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I got nothing free.. how does one do that? Get stuff for free... is there a secret?

Cheers!
 
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Signing up on freebies sites, getting coupons for freebies.
Sign up on survey sites, get products to test.

Scrounge around where people are discarding things. (we have a building in our town for people to leave stuff they don't want).

Freecycle.

let your friends/relatives know you will take usable things they were going to toss.
 

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A teenage tshirt that Buddy wanted free after coupon

A very pretty calander free from the bank

A box of Russell stovers chocolates from the local hardware store. Hubby had stopped in to get stuff to fix a leak. They put it I his bag with a "Thank you for shopping with us"

A few little things for free after coupon at the grocery store but I can not recall them right noe
 
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Sign up on survey sites, get products to test.

Scrounge around where people are discarding things. (we have a building in our town for people to leave stuff they don't want).

Freecycle.

let your friends/relatives know you will take usable things they were going to toss.

Thanks to the both of you! I will check that stuff out.

I must be a sucker because I insist on paying for free stuff.
 
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A brand new Oster bread machine my daughter won at a drawing where she banks and she gave it to me.I have always wanted one but just never bought one and never told anyone i would like to have one for i knew some of my kids would get me one and i just didn't want them to spend that much on me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #56 ·
I got nothing free.. how does one do that? Get stuff for free... is there a secret? Cheers!
It's a lot of luck and a lot of work a lot of the time. :) The others have already told you about the samples and sign-ups. I haven't had much luck with those, but I get most of my freebies through couponing, bogos and points programs.

Kmart was really agressive with their points program earlier in the year, like "Spend $20, get $5 in points" or, my favorite, "You have $5 in points to spend in XYZ department, 3 days only!" The last one like that was $3 to spend in toys a few weeks ago. I didn't use it because I wasn't out that way and didn't want to waste gas for $3 savings... but if I HAD gone, I would have gotten playdough... (they want you to buy a $50 for $3 off, but you can use it for 3 x $.89 items and just leave the extra points and walk out for free. )

By saving my points all year and hitting the most aggressive points offers, I had enough points by November to get both of my daughters dreamlites for Christmas completely free. Those points have expiration dates, so you have to watch them. The cashiers kept asking me "Do you know you have $50 in points? Do you want to use them today?"

Staples also does "rewards," which are rather tricky (only pay on certain items, only pay out at $10 or more, expire quarterly, all sorts of tricky stuff) but by buying only loss-leaders during back-to school and by recycling ink cartridges, I was able to get an HP printer-scanner-fax for free that my sister will be opening tomorrow. (They have an ancient black n white that doesn't scan... not good enough with three kids in school... ) This would only have worked at back to school time when they were doing "free with rebate" reams of paper and great sales... The paper kicked back at full value, so they literally were paying me $.67 to take their paper. (And, say it with me, I gave most of it to Sis and the kids.)

I had hoped to use my coke points to get DFIL a Bass Pro gift card, but they did their promotion different this year, and I didn't want to risk it being delayed in the mail. So that was a bummer, I was hoping to get his present for free... but buying his gift card (among others) got me a $25 grocery card kickback during a promotion, which I was able to use for all sorts of stuff... and I used all those coke points to get $25 Walmart (which went to buy stocking stuffers) GC, $5 McD's Arch card, $10 dominoes card, $50 Southwest Airlines Card, $25 Home Depot card, and GCs for 5 12-packs of coke products. (And yes, I drink a lot of soda, but most of those points actually came from recycling-raiding--so much CLASSIER than dumpster diving...teehee) People think I'm really nice because I always take out the trash and recycling from the office without even being asked...

And there's also Mypoints and Swagbucks and all those sort of programs, which can net you gift cards... I cashed out $60 in gift cards from them in October... one $25 Target card was a gift for my nephew, another went toward DD5's expensive LeapPad tablet, and $10 home depot card is just going into the kitchen fund. Most of those points came just from clicking-through on their ads... but I did buy a few things through them when the deals were right--when it was cheaper that buying direct. Walmart does a lot of 8 points/$ specials, so those two Furbies I bought my kids netted over 800 points, and with ship-to-store it didn't cost me anything more than buying in-store.

The others mentioned freecycle, and I second that. People give away all kinds of stuff... but bear in mind there are lots of freecyclers, so most of the time I don't get what I respond for... but sometimes, and sometimes is better than "never."

Then there's the coupon thing. Combining good sales or BOGOs with coupons can get you freebies. A lot of folks get great deals on health/beauty stuff this way. I got a bunch of suave deodorants free a few months ago when they went on sale for $1 at CVS and I had $1 coupons... though my funniest one was when CVS advertised Stayfree maxi pads for $2 on a week when there were $2 coupons, so it was free... so I bought all that were left at the end of the week, about a cart full... it was really really funny. Those, btw, I gave to Sis for her many daughters, likewise with the deodorant. (Because people always wonder what crazy couponers "do with all that stuff...") Walmart had some colgate for $1 that was free after a $1 coupon, also to Sis.

Oh, and CVS does their ECB kickbacks that can be spent on anything at all. Right now they are doing 2% of all your spending, which will print out as a coupon when the promotion is over. Toys R Us is currently 10%, same sort of deal. So when those promotions are over, it will be time to redeem those...

And then there are all the things that people will just give you or throw out and not care if you take. If people know you will take things off their hands, they will frequently give you a whole box of "junk." Even if 99% of it is unusable, there's that 1%, and after sorting out the actual trash, you can drop the rest off at charity the next time you're there. Free tax credit= free money...

Ah, and lest we forget... the free-kickback credit cards. People get all kinds of stuff with those, I just use the statement-credit feature to pay back less than I charged... gotta love it... but sometimes they do special deals like $50 gift cards for $45 in credits, so those can be a good deal, if it's stuff you'll actually use.

And that's really the key... only doing what you would do anyway, only getting what you will use. The companies have marketing experts who fund all kinds of studies in how to bait consumers. They're very, very good, so you have to be better. For me (and most of the villagers, I think) it's a game... actually, no, more like a competitive sport... that's why we have this thread, so that we can brag :D I mean, "Share our experiences" Teehee.

So you can see it's frequently tricky/labor intensive, but if you pay attention, it can really pay off.

A box of Russell stovers chocolates from the local hardware store. Hubby had stopped in to get stuff to fix a leak. They put it I his bag with a "Thank you for shopping with us"
I'm jealous! I was at the grocery AND the hardware today, and I don't think I heard that at either place, let alone got chocolate!!! Now, our hardware does send a $5 coupon once in a while that can be used for anything, including chocolate, I suppose... but they don't sell Russell Stover, and if they did, it would be more than $5... :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #57 ·
A brand new Oster bread machine my daughter won at a drawing where she banks and she gave it to me.I have always wanted one but just never bought one and never told anyone i would like to have one for i knew some of my kids would get me one and i just didn't want them to spend that much on me.
You'll love it! You can set the timer and it will have it ready for you when you get home. I remember once when I was working crazy shiftwork... I had the breadmaker on a timer, the crockpot going, and was sleeping when the roomba vacuum starting it's daily cycle. I smiled to myself and thought "Oh bother, I wish the servants wouldn't make such noise while I'm napping!" :D

Try googling "Jo's rosemary bread" "cuz I can't remember what site i found it on. It's great!
 

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OMG! ZHOEN! I had NO idea!

Now that I think about it, although not in December, - I book frequent flyer miles and purchased 2 round trip tickets for myself, my daughter and my granddaughter to attend a wedding in Florida in May. We're going to make it a vacation at the same time.


In December, I got a free 6 pack of vitamin water from CVS special (for being on their mailing lists) and a free pair of pantyhose from ECB. I also got a free ski lift ticket worth $88 from my Boyne rewards (ski points).

But as I was reading through your post - I am thinking you'd have to spend an awful lot to get a small stipend as is the case with the ECB, FF miles and boyne rewards. Is it really worth it? I think so, if you happen to be buying something you need anyway.. But if you are buying for the sake of racking up points... then I wouldn't bother.

Happy to learn of possibilites and will keep my eye open for opportunities.


Cheers!
 
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Discussion Starter · #60 ·
You are right that it's definitely "a nickel here, a dime there..." but it adds up over time. After blowing all my accumulated points in the last couple months on all the great promotions they've been having, I think the next few months are going to kind of suck for deals... but with any luck, they'll prove me wrong... <fingers crossed>
 
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