Saturday, September 20, 2008

Request free samples the easy way!

The world of free samples is an exciting one! It's an excellent way to try new products and save a bit of money in the meantime. There are a few things you'll want to do to make things easier.

* Set up an email address that is strictly for free sample requests. You shouldn't get spammed but sometimes to get the free sample you sign up to get a newsletter, too. Some of the free sample sites I visit (see below) offer a newsletter that you'll want to subscribe to as well. Some request forms require you to confirm your request before you can receive it so don't forget to check your free sample email every few days. Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail, and are just a few excellent free email services. Yahoo now has the Ymail and Rocketmail domains, and Hotmail now has Live. has an endless variety of domains including,, and many others.

* Set up an Internet phone number. I use AIM Phoneline. It's free and you can either take the call or let it go to voicemail. You almost always have to enter a phone number and most people aren't comfortable with giving out their landline or cell phone number.

* Download either the Google toolbar with AutoFill or RoboForm for one-click form-filling. I was filling out forms line by line until I realized that I didn't have to. You just download the program and then go in there and put as much or as little information as you want. I just entered the information that is typically asked on a free sample form: name, address, email, phone number, and birthdate. When you open a form for a free sample, simply click the AutoFill box or RoboForm identity box and presto, the form is filled out for you.

* Bookmark some great free sample sites and visit them every day:

Mommy Jobs freebie board (This is my Internet home; I post links to most of the samples I send off for here)

Frugal Inspiration (The best freebie board I've seen on the Internet; she has categorized all the freebies)

My Savings (They list new additions and user favorites)

Free Sample Forager (A great freebie blog)

My Precious Pennies
(A sidebar listing of freebies I haven't seen anywhere else) (Go to "In stores now" and then "free samples")

Money Saving WAHM (That's this blog. I post links to samples I've received and will soon start posting links to ones I've requested.)

Most of these sites don't make anything from posting links to free samples, so be sure to visit one of their advertising sponsors while you are there!

Happy free sample requesting!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Recent free samples

I've gotten some great free samples lately. Most of them are still available. Here they are:

Fiber one cereal and bar

StaphAseptic ointment

Coromega Omega-3 fish oil supplement

Tampax Pearl

Playtex Sport

Playtex Gentle Glide (different sample)

Splenda coffee flavors

Head and Shoulders shampoo and conditioner

I've also received a double sample of Cascade gel packs and a full-size Mr. Clean eraser from Wal-Mart, but those are gone now. Here's a link to a free mini Mr. Clean eraser:

Mini Mr. Clean eraser
(I just sent for this so I don't have it yet)

If you like getting samples, check these free sample sites every few days! All of the samples placed on these sites are 100 percent free with no strings attached.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Free diabetic kit!

This fabulous (and complete) diabetic kit came free the other day! I thought it was just the meter and strips when I ordered it, but it is the entire kit ... meter, strips, lancing device, and lances in a pouch. There are some cards to join some free programs as well. I got this to have on hand for my five-year-old niece. She's diabetic and at my house a good bit of the time. Her mom always sends all her supplies, and I already have everything at my house, but it never hurts to have extra on hand.

Here is the link to the free kit along with links to some other great samples I've received recently!

Free diabetic kit

I am still waiting on a couple of other different diabetic samples. Here are the links.

One Touch meter

Unistik lancing device

I found these great diabetic samples in my daily searches for free samples. Get some to have on hand if you or a friend or loved one is diabetic.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Use your leftover coffee grounds!

This coffee tip came from a frugal blog a few years ago. It seems a bit weird, maybe even gross, at first but I guarantee if you try it you will be impressed.

Save your leftover coffee grounds and use them to make the next pot of coffee!

When you make a pot of coffee, save the grounds until the next time you make coffee. Put half the amount of fresh coffee grounds that you normally use in with the leftover grounds. For instance, if you use two scoops of fresh grounds, place one scoop of fresh grounds on top of the leftover grounds. Brew the coffee with the same amount of water you normally use.

You can't taste the difference, or at least I can't!

You can do this at least once and I've even used the leftover grounds twice.

(If I could just cut back on the amount of sugar and creamer I use I'd really be saving some money.)

What are some ways you like to use your leftover coffee grounds?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Using everything in a tube

Does it drive you crazy when you know there is more toothpaste, ointment, whatever, in a tube, but it refuses to come out?

It does me. Or, it did. Now I just break out the scissors and solve the problem.

Just cut the tube in half! You'll be very surprised at how much is still in the tube, even after not one more drop will squeeze out.

Store the tube halves in a plastic zipper seal bag, or put the cut ends together, one inside the other. I like to use the plastic bags since no air gets in to dry out the toothpaste or whatever it is.

Monday, September 15, 2008

'Roadside Freecycle'

We have something here in the "big city" that I like to call "roadside Freecycle."

You may be familiar with the actual Freecycle, where you get on the Internet at, join a group in your area and offer and receive things completely free of charge with no strings attached. It's a wonderful way to recycle; I've written a few pieces about it for newspapers in my area.

The more informal version is what most people think of as "putting things out on the side of the road." You know, for the city to pick up. It turns out that here in the "big city," household items get picked up at the curb once a week, and people put out some great stuff that is still useable and in good condition.

The secret is stopping right when you see it because if you keep going and say you'll get it when you come back, it will not be there. Not even if you come back in 30 minutes.

On my way to pick up the girls from school one afternoon last week I spotted this plastic drawer cart on the side of the road. I stopped, backed up, and got out and checked it out. I determined it to be free of pests and cleanable, so I stowed it in the back of the van. After we got home I set it outside and cleaned it with some of my homemade cleaner (half borax, half washing soda, about a teaspoon or so in a half a bucket of water). I haven't decided what I'm going to put in it yet.

We have plucked a chair, a vacuum cleaner, a bicycle, and other great items off the side of the road. We are still using all of them. My sister, who lives in another city, snagged a baby changing table that I used to store the baby's clothes and necessities for a while. We've also grabbed a few things that didn't work, so out to our curb they went.

We aren't just on the taking end of this "roadside Freecycle." We've put loads of good working items that we just didn't care to keep anymore out on our curb. Things like televisions, computer monitor, a desk, stove, dishwasher, etc. All of them were useable and just required a bit of tinkering. My sister-in-law was only too happy to grab a television and a desk that I had set out on the side of the road. She happily watches the TV set in her bedroom while her kids play on a computer that is perched on top of the desk she scooped up. We saw the stove in a secondhand store. The poor dishwasher and the monitor sat out on the side of the road until the city came by after it.

If your city picks up household items once a week, keep on the lookout for good finds! (You might want to join the real Freecycle, too.)