Thursday, June 25, 2009

Best way to host a blog giveaway

I have a couple blogs, and in an effort to get more Google hits through SEO, I thought I'd try doing a couple giveaways.

At first I just put them on my blog with a post up at the top letting people know that they were there. Even though I get about 40-100 hits on each a day, and have a multitude of subscribers, there were very few comments made.

So next I looked to see where I could post online to let people know. The best, and easiest to use, application that I found was at BigListofGiveaways (this isn't a sponsored post, it's just what I found). I found that my giveaway for something useful (dish cloths) got the response. Something obscure and targeted doesn't get as many people signing up, apparently.

Also, in an effort to get the most comments and hits, I marked that it's an 'easy giveaway- just leave a comment with contact info' since that's what I was after anyway.

Just sharing my findings.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Multi Player Games

Do you like to play multiplayer games? My hubby does, and I think that if I were to be into video games, the only way I'd stay interested is if I was playing against real people. Hubby likes the challenge of another person's unpredictability, especially with war games. He spent a winter outfitting my work computer (!) with all sorts of software to enable him to play against others online. Where he prefers more war and strategy type games, I prefer simpler ones like Tetris and Solitare. Whatever games you like, there are some out there online for free. Go check out - they have a fast site and you can sign up for free at this quickly growing network community.



We're moving our checking over to one that allows us to pull out all our 'envelope' (food, fuel, entertainment, household, medical, etc) money from the ATM since our local credit union has a daily limit that is kind of annoying. We're using USAA, where we also have all our insurances through, and have one credit card that has the lowest rate/highest balance so is last in our debt snowball to be paid off. They're great, they have the lowest rate for car insurance that I've found. I don't think their life insurance rates are the best, it sounds like Zander Insurance that Dave Ramsey supports would be cheaper, but hubby was none too happy about the whole 'physical' thing and I don't think he'll consent to go through it again. I suppose I could change mine, maybe I should call and see if it would really be that much cheaper. We have 100K on me, I stay home, 15 year term, and 250 on him, 30 year term.

I'm glad that I can get life insurance on myself. We chose 15 years because it's cheaper, and if needed I can renew it then. And also, likely if it was a real emergency (ya know, I think it would be if I DIED) my now toddler should be able to step up and 'do' most of what I do in 15 years. I'm not able to get disability insurance on myself, which is something I looked into because if I become permanently or long-term disabled, someone is going to have to take care of the kids. But they only cover loss of income for disability. Hubby does construction, and I'm pretty sure disability insurance is way out of our price range for him.


Friday, June 5, 2009

Start Page

This browser start page is a cute way to customize your internet experience. It's not affiliated with Google, but is very googlish. Uses Google search, though.


Switching banks

With our envelope system, we end up withdrawing an awful lot of cash (for me, at least). Honestly, I feel like a drug dealer asking for all these specific denominations (this many 50s, this many 20s, this many 10s, this many 5s...) though the bank teller assures me that it's not abnormal. We do that so they split into the envelopes easily; ie 75 to Clothing, 300 to groceries but I don't want 100s, 250 to fuel but 20s are easiest to deal with there.

Anyway, with our local credit union I have a limit on our ATM with drawls; 200/day. Which would be fine, but I like to do all our envelopes in one day and I have a pretty strong aversion to unloading the kids just to walk in the bank. And I don't like going through the drive through, it seems to take quite a while. So I called our bank that we get insurance through, USAA, and switched our checking over to them. Seriously, now they own our life. We have life insurance, renter's insurance, car insurance, a (closed) credit card, and now our checking through them. But we can withdraw 1000 a day and they reimburse the atm fees for using other bank's atms. And we can call ahead and get the w/d limit raised if we're doing something like pulling out cash to buy a car.

We have to mail in our checks, but since we're not cutting it so close any more, the 3-4 day wait time for the deposit is fine with us. Honestly we end up holding on to our checks for 3-4 days anyway before we actually make it down to the bank.


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