Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Coupon Queen blog is up at The Examiner

Most of you know by now that I write a weekly blog on saving money for several sites. Along with a few good local deals, I also include tips that everyone can use to save money.

You can see my current post at The Examiner by going here.

You can also see my past blog posts by going here

I hope you find some information that will help you and bless you financially!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Value of a Dollar

When is the last time you checked out a “dollar store?” Or maybe a discount store such as Big Lots? Well, it may be time to do so again.

In the last couple of years, I have noticed that many dollar stores seem to have disappeared. It really didn’t surprise me as I’m sure it takes a considerable volume of sales to pay the rent. However, just recently it seems that I’m seeing more dollar stores opening up again. In my quest for furthering my dollar, I decided to check them out.

I found Dollar Tree to be surprisingly good. This store is a true “dollar store,” meaning that every item in the store sells for $1 or less. They seem to consistently carry a variety of name-brand products. And even their food items have been within the “sell-by” date. In the past I have seen a fair amount of “outdated” foods in various dollar stores so I’m always cautious about the expiration dates. I even bought a loaf of bread from there that was fresh from the bakery – name brand, whole wheat! You can find a wide variety of items – greeting cards, paper products, seasonal items, cleaning products, food, and much more.

I’ve also seen Dollar General and Family Dollar stores opening up. These stores do not sell every item for $1, but they do have some good discounts on name-brand items. Be sure to know your prices before going shopping because other store sales may be the better deal. But, you may just find some incredible bargains as well.

Big Lots also seems to be expanding their store locations. Big Lots are usually fairly large stores that sell just about everything, including furniture. Their prices are discounted considerably as well. I always advise to check expiration dates on any perishable items.

I’m sure there are many other similar stores around the country. I encourage you to go check them out periodically. These stores won’t always have everything in stock, but when you find what you need, it’s usually for a great price.

**** Save money on eating out **** is offering an 80% off special right now! If you order online using the discount/coupon code INDULGE you can purchase a $25 gift certificate for $2!! Go check it out! You can do a search to see which restaurants participate. Code is valid through January 19, 2010, but gift cards don’t expire for a year after purchase.Now, on to some local deals for the week

For more information on my book, please visit my book's website here.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

December 2009 Online Earnings

Here's a summary of my earnings for December. It was a great month!! Grand total earnings were almost $400!

PaidTheFastest – paid $81.41 in December 2009

PaidTheFastest is a PTC/GPT site. The site offers regular PTC (paid-to-click) ads that pay anywhere from ¼ cent to 1 cent each, but there are only a few each day (2-3). However, they also have a large “offer” list where you can complete offers (many are free) for money. In that list of offers is a section called “Daily Clicks.” These ads can only be done once per day from ONE site (many sites offer the same ads but completing them from more than one site will get you banned or blocked). On these daily clicks, you click the link, then click on one of the advertisers within the link. Wait 10-20 seconds and then submit it for payment. They pay 2 cents each. I’ve cashed out MANY times now, for a total of over $130 since October 2009. The funds are always in my paypal within 5 minutes. They also offer Amazon gift cards, which they say are paid weekly. Minimum cashout for paypal is $3 and Amazon is $5.
Please note that this site does require a telephone verification. I had no problem with this, but they seem to be bogged down right now and it’s taking a bit longer. However, they have also stated that you may email them a copy of a photo ID that shows your address for verification.

To join, please click here

Swagbucks – paid $10 in Amazon gift cards in December 2009
Swagbucks is a search engine that randomly awards “swagbucks” that are redeemable for prizes. I simply “search” for every site I go to and usually get about 2-3 swagbucks per day. They also have a newsletter they send with swagbucks and a toolbar where they offer swagbucks periodically. I think there may be swagbucks on twitter too. I’m not really sure because I can’t keep up with twitter!

To sign up, please click here

Gombolptr – paid $1 in December 2009
This site is strictly a PTC (paid to click) site. They send about 20-25 ads per day to your email and you click a link, then click an advertiser on their link. Wait 30 seconds until it tells you your account has been credited. The ads range from ¼-1/2 cent each- not much but the site had paid consistently for several years that I am aware of.

To join, please click here – earned $1 in December 2009
A standard survey site. Not one of my favorites as I rarely get paying surveys from them. But every once in a while I get something! I couldn’t find a referral link so if you want to join, just go to

Secret Internet Shopper – paid $57.23 in December, 2009
I'm always looking for ways to make money that don't take me away from my kids unless my husband can be home with them. And even then, I hate to not have any family time with everyone. A friend told me about a site that paid her. They send you a task list of 8 websites to visit. You are required to enter a valid email, address & phone number. You will want to set up a freebie email to use that is separate from your main email so that your email isn't clogged with spam afterward. I will be setting up a freebie one after each task list so that I know which emails were confirmations of my website visits, as these emails have to get forwarded back to the mystery shopping company.Each task list that I've done (2 so far) has taken me roughly 1/2 hour to complete. Then, figure another 10 minutes for completing your invoice and forwarding the emails. So, say 45 minutes to a hour to be safe. They pay $15 per completed task list, less the paypal fee, so you net a little over $14 per task list.The bad side...yes, there had to be a bad side... your phone is going to ring like crazy for the first couple of days. At first I was just using caller ID and not answering. But they just kept calling so I started answering and politely telling them that I was no longer interested.I completed the tasks on Monday, 11/30 and Tuesday 12/2. I was paid for both today, 12/4. My friend who told me about the site said it was about a week before she was paid (and I believe the site does say within 7 days).If you are interested, please go to If you would please enter my name in the "referred by" box, I would appreciate it as they do pay $5 for referrals once they complete a set of shops. My name is Renita Perrone. Also, please let me know you signed up by either leaving me a comment here, or emailing me at so that I can follow up with them.I'm hoping I get more shops soon. As much as I hate the phone ringing like this, I need the money and I'll put up with phone calls if I could make $15 in an hour or less!

PrizeLive – paid $7.12 in December 2009 - Another site that pays instantly via paypal, although other redemption options are available. All I do is login daily, click on the "Daily Tasks" section and complete those, click on the additional "Exclusive PTC's" that there is a link to once you've finished parts 1-3 of the first section. **Please note that if you do these “daily clicks” on another site, you will NOT get credited for doing them here and you run the risk of being banned from the site** Takes literally less than 5 minutes per day and I usually do these while multi-tasking. They've paid me several times so far and after the first one, each payment has been INSTANT. They have games you can play as well, once you earn enough points to play. I've only played the Match Up game but if you win, it's 18 cents added to your earnings. You also earn for level 1 & 2 downline referrals.

YouData – paid $0.24 in December 2009 (slowest month yet!)
YouData is a site where you login to view ads. This is NOT your typical PTC site. The ads usually pay 10 cents each, sometimes more. They consistently deposit the money in your paypal each Friday (less paypal fees). Unfortunately the ads are few & far between lately, but it’s easy $$. You do have to have a cell phone capable of receiving a text message to join. They text you a confirmation code and that is the only time I’ve heard from them via cell. You also earn for your downline referrals.

Dollarclickorsignup & Clickorsignup – paid $36.43 in December 2009
I joined DollarClickorSignUp on 9/13/09. I received my first payment on 10/10. On 10/19 I requested my second payment and received it on 10/25. The admin states that if you request payment on or before the 5th, you will receive in on the 10th, or request it on or before the 20th and you'll receive in on the 25th. Both times she's come through!It's an easy site - doing PTC's (Paid-to-click links). There are also offers you can complete, as well as daily clicks. Some earnings are in cash value (paid through paypal) and other earnings are in "clickit coins" which are redeemable for a variety of prizes. I spend probably 5-10 minutes per day on the site. Hard to say exactly because I am always multi-tasking.The other thing I LOVE about the site is that it pays 100% referral earnings. So every time a referral earns a penny, I earn a penny. That can easily help the earnings rack up faster! admin also owns another site that I have joined recently. I haven't reached payout level on it yet, but hoping to get there soon! It's run exactly the same way from what I can tell.That one is called ClickorSignup and the link is here

CreationsRewards – paid $5 in December 2009
This site issues points for answering a daily trivia question, visiting websites daily, and answering surveys. You can also earn by shopping through their site. However, on the daily website visits – BE CAREFUL!! These are often the same as the “daily clicks” on other sites so once again, if you are doing them on multiple sites, you risk being banned. I only do the daily trivia and any website visits that are not the same as these daily clicks so it’s slow earning, but they’ve paid me several times since I’ve joined so I know they are reliable.

There doesn’t appear to be any referral program so if you want to join, click here

SurveySpot – paid $2 in December 2009
This is a standard survey site. It was never very high on my list until recently as their surveys were almost always simply for a sweepstakes entry. Paid surveys were rare. However, they have now implemented a points program which makes it much more valuable to me! Not all surveys offer points, so you have to watch them. But, if you qualify frequently, you could earn good $$ here.

There is not a referral program so if you wish to join, click here

CrazyMonkeyGold – paid $6.25 in December 2009
This is a GPT site that offers PTC ads, offers, and the “daily clicks” that most sites now offer. Again, remember that doing those daily clicks on multiple sites is forbidden!! The site pays $1 for referrals once they complete an offer, which is a really nice bonus! But, I think it’s a one-time bonus… not sure if you earn on offers they complete after that or not. Payment was received within about 48 hours. Minimum payout is $1 to paypal and they offer other redemption options as well.

If you wish to join, please click here

MatrixMails – paid $2.97 in December 2009
MatrixMails is a GPT site that offers various ways to earn. So far I’ve only done PTC’s and paid emails. They have occational offers you can complete and if you do, you get paid on those quickly, regardless of minimum payout requirements. For PTC’s and paid emails, the minimum payout is $2 via paypal. Not sure if there are other redemption options or not… I don’t think so.

If you wish to join, please click here.

GSN – Game Show Network – paid $50 in gift cards in December 2009
There is so much to do on this site! You answer a daily trivia challenge, enter the bingo blitz, play games, and answer other trivia questions daily for “oodles” which are points redeemable for a variety of prizes. They have consistently paid me every gift card I’ve requested since June 2009 (over $500 now). The only “down” side is that they don’t put the gift cards up fast enough and you have to be quick to snag them! If you want more info, please look back further in my blog for more details.

They have yet to implement the referral program so if you wish to join, simply go to – paid $4 in December 2009
This is a typical survey site. They send you an invitation about once a day. Sometimes they don’t really have a survey so they offer something else. But, if you qualify for the survey you get paid $1, which is supposed to be paid in a week. However, the last few I qualified for took quite a bit longer. I was about to give up on them when 4 payments came through at once. There is no referral program so simply go to to join.

Harris Poll online – paid $20 in Amazon g/c in December 2009
Another typical survey site. Earn points for completing surveys and redeem for a variety of prizes. This site has consistently paid me for several years but it can be slow to earn.
To join, go to

InstantCashSweepstakes – paid $52.08 in December 2009
This is a funny little site! Every 3 hours you can login and answer 5 quick little polls (3 questions each). Each time you do you earn “coins” and the possibility of earning cash. The coins are redeemable for prizes, but it takes A LOT of coins to earn a prize and prizes are limited. They also have a daily drawing of $50.00. When the person you were referred by wins a prize, you might also have won the same matching prize. This month the person who referred me won the $50 daily drawing so I got the matching prize! Yay! And then I earned various little amounts and was able to cash out a 2nd time. Paypal does take their cut, unfortunately. But, the minimum payout is $2. It seems like they’ve changed their rewards a bit because I’ve been winning many times a day, but always small amounts - $0.01-$0.07 each. Of course I have several active referrals so that has helped! If you wish to join, please click here

Synovate/Global Opinion Panels – paid $5 in December 2009
Another typical survey site. Points are earned for each survey. Points are redeemable for cash (via check). Has paid consistently for several years. No referral program so just go to to join

Gather – paid $25.00 in December 2009
Gather is a social networking site that rewards its members for participation. Points are issued for activity. The exact method is unknown, but getting people to view your articles/photos/videos is worth more than you viewing other’s work. Hardly seems fair, but in order to truly get the viewers, you pretty much have to be actively viewing the work of others to get them to reciprocate. Gather has paid consistently for years though, and I truly enjoy the friendships I’ve made from there. A large variety of prizes are available as well. To join, simply go to

SendEarnings – paid $27.31 via check in December 2009 ($30 less fees)
This is a paid-email program. They send you a few emails per day that are worth 2 cents each, I believe. You do have to reach $30 to request payment, which takes a while, but it’s mere seconds out of your day. And they have paid me a few times now. You can also earn by doing surveys, shopping through the site and completing offers. I rarely do any of those things.

To join, click here

InboxDollars works exactly like SendEarnings. If you wish to join that one as well, click here