5 Steps to Weathering a Winter Storm

With winter storm Nemo coming through the eastern part of the country, I thought I’d share a few tips on saving money during a winter storm.  So grab a cup of hot coca and give this list a look over.

  1. Be prepared.  Plan ahead when you know a storm’s coming so you’re ready to get through the storm.  Pick up anything outside that you don’t want to get buried beneath the snow where it might be lost or broken if unintentionally ridden over or stepped on.  Move your car someplace safe and out of the way of snowplows or tree limbs about to snap, etc. to prevent damage.  Pull the shovel out of storage (and the sleds for once the storm has passed).
  2. Be stocked up.  Before you see the forecast that says a blizzard is headed your way, you should already have the staples on hand that you’ll need in the case of an emergency weather situation.  If you keep these things on hand, you can buy them when they go on sale and save money (and not last-minute in the crazy mad rush everyone makes to the store just before a storm hits).
  3. Bundle up.  When the temperatures start dropping, instead of running to the thermostat, throw on a sweater.  Then sit on the couch wrapped in a warm blanket with a hot drink and a good book.  You now have an excuse to sit and relax.  If anyone asks, you’re not just sitting around, you’re saving money!
  4. Bundle up your house/apartment/igloo.  If you haven’t properly insulated your house, then this is another reminder that you need to.  Proper insulation will help save you money on heating costs.  If you live in an apartment and can’t make these sorts of chances or the storm is already here and it’s too late to insulate, draw the curtains to keep the cold out (I suggest thick, heavy curtains to really block the cold air).
  5. Be safe.  It is really important to be safe, especially in the bad conditions of a winter storm.  Roads get slippery and accidents happen, don’t drive if you don’t have to.  If the electricity goes out, it is generally safer to use a flashlight than candles, no need to add house fire to the list of things going wrong.  Look in on elderly neighbors to make sure their alright, maybe they would like to see the new hand shadow tricks you’ve learned! Ultimately, use common sense; don’t go out if you don’t absolutely have to, sit under that warm blanket and enjoy a hot beverage as you watch the snow fall.

Here is a basic list with just a few items necessary to get you through the next blizzard:

  • Water
  • Food – some of it should have at least some nutritional value, so a cupboard full of bags of Cheez doodles doesn’t count.  Also, some of it shouldn’t require cooking, if the power goes out.
  • Flashlights/batteries – this will be necessary for making hand shadows on the wall for entertainment once the electricity goes out.
  • Radio – to hear the news or for backup entertainment when the hand shadows thing gets old.
  • Charged cell phone or corded land-line –in case you need to call anyone and the power goes out, both of these should still work, as a cordless land-line probably would not.

Earn 100 Points from Recyclebank

Take advantage of the current offer from Recyclebank to earn 100 points by learning about recycling aluminum!

Image representing RecycleBank as depicted in ...

Image via CrunchBase

If you are aren’t signed up for Recyclebank yet,  click here to sign up now. To learn more about Recyclebank, read my previous post about Recyclebank and learn why you need to join now.

Complete the task to earn 100 points and you will have already earned enough do redeem coupons and discounts.  So you gotta join now!

Do’s and Don’ts to Save You Money on Valentine’s Day

Do shop early. If you are buying something, buy the card, flowers, candy, and/or gifts sooner than the day before (or the day itself).  To get the right gift at the best price means leaving enough time to find it.

Deals on flowers from Kelly at Faithful Provisions

Flower Deals for Valentine's Day

Do find alternative ways to show your love.  You don’t have to buy something for someone to show them that you love them.  You can do something fun together or make a gift for them, like a homemade card or a craft.

20 Valentine’s Day DIY Craft Ideas from Hani @ Craftionary

20 valentine's day crafts

Don’t wait too long to make or buy stuff for Valentine’s Day.  Otherwise, you will have to settle for whatever you can get or put together last-minute.  If you wait till the last minute, you will either be stuck with a less than awesome gift or a high price tag, or both.

Do save on dining by taking advantage of special deals.  Be aware that many formal restaurants will inflate prices for Valentine’s Day.  If you are still determined to go, take advantage of special deals.

Deals for restaurants on Valentine’s Day from Kelly at Faithful Provisions

Save on Valentine's Day Dinner

Don’t feel that you have to go out to dinner.  Make a special dinner at home. Get out the nice table-cloth, candles, and put up some decorations (which could be the DIY crafts you made from above).

Recipes, from breakfast to dessert, from Doug at Pocket Change Gourmet

Make your own Valentine's Day Dinner

Do save on dining by having dessert at home.  Whether or not you do decide to go out to dinner on Valentine’s Day, have dessert at home.  This way you’ll save that extra cost as the cost of dessert is extremely inflated at restaurants.

12 ideas for Valentine’s Day dessert from Kim at Handmade and Craft

12 Sweet Valentines Day Recipes

Don’t feel constrained to celebrating Valentine’s Day on February 14.  This is a great way to save money.  Celebrate after February 14 and you can save at the restaurants that have by now gone back to regular prices and buy Valentine’s Day themed items on sale from stores trying to clear the shelves.

Those are just a few dos and don’ts of how to save money on Valentine’s Day.  What are some ways that you save on Valentine’s Day? What are some things worth splurging on for this holiday celebration?

Earn Free Stuff and Prizes from My Coke Rewards

Do you drink Coke products? Do you like earning rewards? Then head on over to My Coke Rewards where they rewards folks for that kind of behavior.  My Coke Rewards gives free stuff, gifts cards, sweepstakes, and discounts on tons of prizes.

Earn free stuff from My Coke Rewards

Coca-Cola (Photo credit: DeusXFlorida)

All you have to do is sign up.  Then, when you drink a coke product, look for the special number they printed on it and enter it on the site.  Soon you’ll be earning points that you can spend on so many choices of rewards.

Some times My Coke Rewards even gives out free points online.  Check out these different current offers:

  • Right now, My Coke Rewards is giving away 10 free points.  Just click on the button that says “Tweet and Earn 10 MCR Points” and you’ll automatically get those points, even without tweeting, thanks to Hey its free for this info.
  • Also check out the Big Game Day Bonus Points page and earn 20 free points by clicking on the Watch and Share buttons, and again you don’t have to tweet it to get rewarded.

So sign up now and then claim those 30 free points and you’ll be on your way to earning sweet rewards.

What is your favorite Coke product? What reward are you going make your goal to save up points for?

How to Earn Rewards the Easy Way

There are many websites devoted to earning rewards, but if you want a simple one that works with what you already do, i.e. search the web, then check this out. Bing Rewards is a really simple rewards program in that you earn points just by searching the web through their site.

Sign up for Bing Rewards here!

Maybe you already use Bing to search the web.  If that’s the case, then just sign up through the link above and start earning rewards for your efforts.  Maybe you don’t use Bing for searching, but the ease of earning rewards with them is definitely a reason to switch.

Reward Options 

I have used Bing Rewards for over a year now.  In that time, I have earned rewards for Amazon and Tango.com. You can also get Skype credit, Xbox rewards, Hulu plus subscription, Starbucks, Redbox, Groupon, RedEnvelope, and more.  Or you can be generous and donate your points to charities.

Tango.com gives you a few options.  You can choose gifts cards, a check for the amount of your Tango dollars, or donate your dollars to select charities through that site.  There are tons of great options of how to spend your earned dollars there, that’s what I normally spend my Bing rewards points on.

Try It! It’s Easy!

I challenge you to try it for a little while and I think you’ll see that searching through Bing while getting gifts for using it is a pretty easy way to earn some fun rewards.

Have you tried Bing rewards? Have you earned any fun rewards, or are you aiming for any one in particular?