Who is ready to win some cold, hard Amazon cash? My good friends over at Swagbucks (remember when I talked about how much I loved them?) have kindly offered to give away one $50 Amazon gift card to a Back to Her Roots reader. Awesome, right? It’s hard to beat $50 to spend on books, groceries, clothes…anything!
Ready to win?
- PRIZE: One $50 Amazon gift card
- TO ENTER: If you haven’t already, sign up for Swagbucks. You must be a Swagbucks member to win. Then, come back here and leave a comment telling me what you’ll spend your $50 on if you win.
- GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Tuesday, May 28th, 2013 at Noon (12pm) EST
- NUMBER OF WINNERS: One
- ELIGIBLE FOLKS: This giveaway is open only to residents of countries where Swagbucks is active—the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and India.
- WINNER ANNOUNCED: Wednesday, May 29th, 2013 on this here post!
- LEGALESE: To enter you must be 18 or older. Winner will be chosen by random drawing from the pool of comments on this post. To be considered for the prize, you must be a registered member of Swagbucks and provide a valid email address. One entry per email address. Once a winner is notified and verified, Swagbucks will be provided with the contact information of the winner and they will be responsible for prize fulfillment. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. To enter, leave a comment on this post. No purchase necessary to win. Entries will close on Tuesday, May 28, 2013 at noon (EST). The winner will be contacted by email on or before Wednesday, May 29, 2013. If the winner does not claim the prize within seven days, the original winner forfeits the prize and a second random entry will be chosen from the pool. This contest is sponsored by Swagbucks and is void where prohibited by law.
- DISCLOSURE: I was in no way compensated for posting this giveaway. However, the sign up link is a referral link, and I receive Swagbuck credits for each new referral. If you prefer to sign up without my referral, you may use this referral-free link and you are still eligible for the giveaway.
How will you spend your $50 if you win?
1. Alba Dry Coconut Oil SPF 15.
We’ve been on the search for a more natural sunscreen and this one is our favorite so far. It’s actually a tanning oil, which means it still lets you get a little bit of a summer glow, but the SPF 15 prevents the damage of a sunburn. It smells amazing. It goes on easy and light. And it lasts all day. Literally, all day. I can put it on an 8am and go work out in the garden until sundown without reapplying (granted, I don’t burn easily, but still). It’s not as natural as some of the sunscreen options out there, but it’s the best option I’ve found so far, especially considering the low price.
2. Wet ‘n’ Wild Party of Five Glitters.
I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but this nail polish is my absolute favorite of all the bajillion glitter nail polishes I have in my stash. It’s cheap (like $2 cheap), the colors go with everything. It goes on smooth. And my new favorite development? It’s pretty much indestructible. Which means I can layer it over as a top coat and it keeps kicking even after a day out in the garden pulling weeds.
3. The Indianapolis 500.
If you’ve been around for a while, you know that I’m kinda obsessed with all things sports. I love a lot of sports—basketball, football, hockey, but my absolute favorite is IndyCar racing (yes, even above college basketball, but it’s a close race). The Indianapolis 500 is like Christmas in May. Seriously. It’s my favorite time of the year. I know a lot of folks don’t get racing (and especially open wheel racing) but I love it. I love the speed. I love the science. I love the tradition. The Indy 500 is my jam. I’ve been streaming practice online all week-long. Love. Love. Love. We’ll, of course, be at the race on Memorial Day weekend. I can’t wait! Worth noting: running around the track at the 2/3 point of a half marathon is not nearly as fun as sitting in the stands, drinking beer and watching cars go around the track.
4. Sun Tea
Growing up, sun tea was something that you could almost always guarantee was brewing on our deck during the warm months. I love sun tea because (a) for some reason, it just totally tastes better than tea made without the sun and (b) it doesn’t require electricity or gas to make, just our good friend Mr. Sunshine. I mix mine up in a Mason jar with a few fresh mint leaves and a splash of simple syrup. Yum!
5. Our Garden
You, of course, know that I love gardening, but in the past few weeks, I’ve really started to appreciate how awesome it is to be able to grow my own food. We’ve had gardens before (small ones at our apartment), but there is something about the scale and volume of having a 5000+ square foot garden now that really makes me appreciate it. Before, it didn’t really impact our lives all that much. Sure, we got a few awesome tomatoes, but it didn’t really change our buying or eating habits. But now? With this much food being pumped out? It’s definitely changed our eating habits. It is so nice to be able to just walk out our door and pick pretty much any veggie I want for lunch (that is in season, of course). In related news, I’m pretty much living on a diet of salads because our salad fixings are so yummy! Fresh spinach and lettuce and green onions and radishes. YUM.
What are you digging right now?
I am slowly but surely making my way through my 30 Before 30 list—my list of 30 things I’d like to accomplish before my 30th birthday next month. Next month! I’m about 45 days out from my birthday and still have 21 items to cross off. Wow-wee. I better get on it! I do have quite a few things to cross off today, so let’s get to it!
#12 Buy a pair of brightly-colored pants.
I am not kidding, I’ve been trying on brightly-colored pants at pretty much every single store I came across and haven’t had much luck. They all fit weird or look weird or were too short or too tight or too big. But last week, I stumbled onto a clearance pair while at the grocery store, of all places. They fit perfectly, they were the perfect color (I love salmon/coral) and they were meant to be ankle pants, so no worried about being too short. Yay! I love them!
#13 Land a big new gig.
I didn’t really have anything in particular in mind when I wrote this item, but I’ve managed to snag quite a few bigger projects over the past few months. I haven’t finalized anything life-changing, but I have had a few let’s-pop-the-champagne opportunities come across my desk. So…yay! Sorry to be so vague, but good things are on the horizon, I promise!
#17 Start a mushroom garden.
We did this! Sorta. To “plant” mushrooms, you drill holes in logs and tap in a wooden plug that’s been infected with the mushroom fungus. Then those plugs infect the entire log. A year later, you’ve got yourself logs that sprout mushrooms as soon as it gets warm! We got one log planted—shittakes, but we still have two other varieties we want to get to. The problem? Dude, it takes forever to drill all those holes! You need to do about 100 per log into hardwood, and it took me about three hours just to do one log. So yes, we’ve started the mushroom garden, but we haven’t finished it yet.
#21 Figure out a better clothes storage system.
Done! Our master bedroom closet isn’t even close to be large enough (it’s smaller than our old apartment closet). So, we’ve taken to using the closet, plus two hand-me-down dressers to hold our clothes. It’s definitely better than the piles and overflowing closet we had before (key word in this item—better), but it’s not great. Eventually, we’d love to redo the closet or, at the very least, get some giant dressers to pack away fold-ables.
#24 Start working on a cookbook.
It’s been a dream of mine for a while now to write, photograph and design a cookbook, and I found myself waiting and waiting for a cookbook offer to drop in my lap. But that’s just not realistic. You know? And since when do I wait for someone else to hand me something? So I started working on it myself! I’m still in the preliminary stages but the important thing is that I’m working on it. And it makes me happy! It might never get printed. It might never be on a bookstore shelf. It might take me 10 years. But it’s something I want to accomplish.
#25 Go vegan for a week.
I didn’t talk about this much here, because it didn’t actually turn out to be as big of a deal as I thought it was, but we went vegan a few weeks back for a while. We were trying it out because Craig has been struggling with some health issues, and we thought maybe a diet switch would work. It didn’t make much of a difference, but it was fun to try out a new lifestyle for a bit. Plus, we got in a ton of fruits and veggies! And now, we’re solidly back into the land of cheese and yogurt.
My list is getting there! And I have a few more items on the docket for the next few weeks. But if I want to complete this list, I gotta get to gettin’!
Do you have any goals you want to accomplish before your next birthday? What are they?
1. My legal, real, only-when-I’m-in-trouble first name is Casandra. Growing up, my nickname was spelled “Cassy” but I got so fed up with people calling me Casey all the time, that I decided to change the spelling in fourth grade. And ever since then, I’ve been Cassie—although most people close to me just call me Cass. It’s all very confusing. You can still find the old spelling of my name on some of our vintage family Christmas decor, like my stocking and some homemade ornaments.
2. Plans were in the works for quite a few years for us to buy my parents’ house and move back to my hometown before we ever actually packed a moving truck. I was dealing with a lot of feelings about moving home, so I first started Back to Her Roots as a personal blog about all those emotions. City girl going back to her country roots and all that. I launched it, wrote three or four posts, and then got scared my employer-at-the-time might stumble onto it and read all about how I’m planning on moving away in a few years. So, I deleted those posts and instead started writing about food, fitness and weight loss (something I was doing to a private audience over on SparkPeople).
3. Speaking of moving home, I am embarrassingly comforted by the fact that my parents live within walking distance of my house. I’m almost 30 years old. I’ve lived alone. I’ve lived in big cities. I’ve even lived alone in a big city. But knowing my Dad and Mama are about 30 seconds away makes me all warm and fuzzy inside.
4. I’m pretty much just pretending that Google Reader isn’t going away. Just the other day I added a bunch of new blogs. Hell no, I wont go.
5. I’ve never had a macaron before. I’m holding out until I can have one in the shadow of the Eiffel tower on a Spring day while wearing a big, floppy hat and a twirly skirt. Because that just sounds about right.
Do you have any confessions to share?
This giveaway is now CLOSED.
Stay tuned every other Friday for a new fun giveaway!
I have a super fun giveaway for your guys today! I was contacted a few weeks ago by the nice people at Golden Earth aromatherapy and essential oils. They have lots of really cool, all-natural, cruelty-free beauty products, but today, we’re talking about their all-natural perfume blends.
There are six different scents, and all of them are free of artificial or synthetic ingredients. Golden Earth sent me three scents to try out, and they all smell amazing! They are light and airy, without any of that harsh, assaulting smell that you sometimes get from artificial scents. I’m pretty much in love with the Grace scent. It’s floral and citrusy, without being too sugary sweet. I’m a fan! I don’t wear a lot of makeup or have a lot of beauty products, but there is something about wearing perfume that makes me feel so girly, pretty and happy. And these perfumes from Golden Earth are a great way to do that minus the chemicals.
Ready to win a bottle of your own?
- PRIZE: One full-size bottle of Golden Earth natural perfume (your choice from six scents)
- TO ENTER: Comment on this post and let me know which scent you are most excited to try out.
- GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 at Noon (12pm) EST
- NUMBER OF WINNERS: One
- ELIGIBLE FOLKS: This giveaway is open to folks with a U.S. mailing address only. Sorry, international readers! I try to snag as many international give aways as I can. Maybe next time!
- WINNER ANNOUNCED: Wednesday, May 1st, 2013 on this here post!
- LEGALESE: To enter you must be 18 or older. Winner will be chosen by random drawing from the pool of comments on this post. To be considered for the prize, you must provide a valid email address. One entry per email address. Once a winner is notified and verified, Golden Earth will be provided with the contact information of the winner and they will be responsible for prize fulfillment. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. To enter, leave a comment on this post. No purchase necessary to win. Entries will close on Tuesday, April 30, 2013 at noon (EST). The winner will be contacted by email on or before Wednesday, May 1, 2013. If the winner does not claim the prize within seven days, the original winner forfeits the prize and a second random entry will be chosen from the pool. This contest is sponsored by Golden Earth and is void where prohibited by law.
- DISCLOSURE: In exchange for this blog post, as well as posting this giveaway, I was compensated with three perfume samples to try.
We have a winner! Congrats to Rebecca who says she’s into fruity scents and would love to try the Fresh perfume.
Which Golden Earth scent are you most excited to try out?
Who doesn’t love free money? If you aren’t participating in some of the rewards website and apps out there, you are seriously missing out. With little or no work, I earn hundreds of dollars in gift cards and cash every year. It’s not enough money to quit your day job, but it’s enough to pay for your latte habit or cover this year’s Christmas gifts.
I know this post sounds like the workings of some spam website, but smarmy headlines or not, I want you guys to get in on this. I’m not getting paid or comped from any of these companies to talk about them. That being said, most of these links below do contain referral codes, which means that I get some sort of credit for referring you to the site. If you’d prefer not to go through my referrals, that’s cool! I just want you guys to be making free money, too! So at the bottom of this post, I’ve included referral-free links for the sites. Feel free to use those links if you prefer. Whatever you do, just make sure you sign up and start earning yourself some free cash, k?
Swagbucks is hands-down my favorite way to earn free gift cards. Basically, with Swagbucks, you do a whole bunch of different tasks (as simple as just searching the web to as complicated as completing offers from sponsors) and for each task, you get rewarded with Swagbucks. Then, you trade in those Swagbucks for things in the Swagstore (DVDs, electronics, gift cards, etc.). My favorite thing in the Swagstore? $5 Amazon gift cards. I make about $800 a year from Swagbucks in Amazon gift cards. And those guys help pay for our Christmas gifts each year!
You can also choose to donate your Swagbucks to various charity drives that they offer. Right now, Swagbucks is collecting for Boston Marathon victims, Doctors Without Borders and the U.S. Humane Society. They always have great charity drives going on, and I try to donate a few of my bucks to the causes every time I get a new gift card.
Oh! And my friends at Swagbucks have given you all a referral code that puts 70 extra Swagbucks in your account! When you sign up on the homepage, click the “I have a sign up code” link and enter the code BACK2ROOTS70.
If you shop online and aren’t using Ebates, you missing out on quite possibly the easiest way to make extra cash online. All you have to do? Click a button before you checkout at an online store. Say, for example, you need to order some new workout pants from Under Armour. You go to Ebates, search for Under Armour and then click the big button that says “Shop Now”. That’s it. You are then redirected to the Under Armour website and you can start shopping. That’s all you have to do! After your order goes through, you’ll get 6% of your order total deposited into your Ebates account, and then, you get a payment deposited into your PayPal account from Ebates every three months. Almost all stores online are on Ebates and some of them have cash back percentages as high as 25%! If you shop online a lot, Ebates is a must. I made about $200 in cash back last year, just from clicking a button!
If you’re a TV fan, Viggle is the app for you. It’s available on iPhone and Android, and after downloading, you can “check in” to live TV. It works by listening to your TV and identifying the show you are watching. You get Viggle points for watching (and bonus points for watching certain special events). You can then redeem the points for gift cards, movie tickets, magazine subscriptions, and more. We like to use our Viggle points for free Redbox rentals or CVS gift cards. We don’t watch a ton of live TV (only sports really), so we don’t earn points as quickly as you could, but we manage to get a few free Redbox rentals a month.
I’m new to shopkick, but what I’ve seen so far is that it’s a great way to earn free stuff just for being out and about at stores. It’s an app for iPhone and Android that earns you rewards for shopping. You check-in to stores and get “kicks” and then you can also go on scanning scavenger hunts, earn kicks for buying certain items, and sync your debit card to earn even more. Just like other sites, you then redeem those kicks for gift cards for everything from Target to Tiffany! Because I live so far away from many of the stores in the app, I don’t earn points quickly, but if you’re a frequenter of Target, Kohls, or other similar stores, you’ll earn gift cards lightning fast!
If you have a charitable streak, GoodSearch is for you! It’s basically like Swagbucks, but all the money goes to a charity you choose. You can search, watch videos and play games, and all of your reward points go to helping out a charity. There are over 100,000 charities in the database, so you can go big or you can go small and local (I donate my GoodSearch money to our county’s humane society).
This is in no way a comprehensive list of all the apps and websites that let you earn rewards, but these are my favorites. Go forth and earn some free cash!