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THE TODAY SHOW
AIRED: 3/4/02 &
follows a bargain hunter extraordinaire as she hunts for deals. “Today”
host Matt Lauer reports.
ANJIE FEATURED ON THE TODAY SHOW!
ANJIE AND TODAY SHOW HOST "DAVID" here
Richmond Times Dispatch
Mar. 9, 2002
Back on 'Today'
Richmonder Angela Reeson's appearance on Monday's "Today" was so
popular, she's going back for a second show.
Reeson, who talked about shopping with coupons and other bargains during
"Today's" "Bargain Week" segment, is scheduled to appear on
this morning's edition of "Today" (8 to 10 a.m., NBC).
Reeson was flown to New York yesterday for an overnight stay.
The cost of the trip to Reeson? Zero, because NBC paid for it - another example
of Reeson's status as bargain queen.
BY DOUGLAS DURDEN
TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER
spelled my name wrong in this edition, but he spelled it.........just like it
sounds....so that is ok with me!
Hresan Enjoys Her "15 Minutes"
by Amy Ridolphi
Angie Hresan, a Powhatan resident, has taken the phrase "saving a
buck" to a new level. Conscientious spending has become more of a way of
life for Hresan, who prides herself on economic frugality.
Recently, her cost-cutting techniques also earned her a spot on NBC's Today
Hresan's path to television started out with a small e-mail list. About six
years ago, Hresan started an e-mail list of close friends and family. She used
the list to send out a newsletter to share special deals, coupons and rebate
offers. The list may have started out small, but as word spread, it soon
"I started a website about two years ago. People can go to the site and
get information on rebates, coupons and special offers," Hresan said.
"It also helps people learn how to save money."
As the website's popularity grew, Hresan started writing articles that were
not only published on her site, but similar websites as well. Eventually, one of
those articles got into the hands of one of NBC's producers. They were
interviewing people for a week-long series on bargain hunters and cheapskates
and Hresan was just who NBC had in mind.
"They interviewed more than 100 people. The producer called me one day
before the deadline and chose me on the spot," she said.
With a deadline approaching quickly, Hresan only had three days to prepare
for the camera crew. She managed to work two days, clean her house and prepare
for the taping of the segment.
The crew arrived at 8:30 a.m. one Tuesday and worked until 9 that evening.
"We had a power day of deal shopping," she said. The whirlwind day
included 10 stops at local businesses and stores. In all, Hresan only spent $16,
but managed to save $323.
How is this possible? Well, the thrifty shopper was armed with an arsenal of
coupons, rebate offers and gift certificates obtained through a variety of
For example, Hresan often signs up for credit cards through companies who
offer free merchandise or gift certificates. A recent special offered a $40 gift
certificate to Office Depot just to sign up for a card. Hresan took her gift
certificate to Office Depot where she only shopped on the clearance table. When
she arrived at the cash register, she paid nothing and even earned a $1 rebate.
All told, the total retail value of the merchandise was $80.
In addition to leading the camera crew to 10 businesses, she also discussed
her website and shared her cost cutting techniques with the Today Show audience.
NBC producers used Hresan's piece to kick off the week-long series that
started March 4. After receiving an overwhelming response from the public, the
show then invited her to make a second appearance on Weekend Today on March 9.
She was flown to New York City March 8 and was featured the next day.
Appearing on a program broadcast to millions could be intimidating for many.
However, Hresan said her familiarity with the topic kept her confident. She said
the Today Show staff was also very helpful.
"I was very comfortable with the subject matter. I knew there was
nothing they could ask me that I couldn't answer," she said. "The only
thing that made me nervous was all the people standing at the window. I just
couldn't look at them."
Since her appearance, Hresan said her website has been booming. She's also
had offers from other programs to make appearances.
Making ends meet
Hresan's cost-cutting efforts started more than 20 years ago. As a single
mom, she found it difficult to provide nice things for herself and her family.
"I couldn't pay my bills and I didn't want to receive government
assistance; I wanted name brand things, but I just couldn't afford them,"
she said. One of the first techniques Hresan attempted was to sign up for credit
cards in order to receive a gift certificate. "It was like Christmas. I was
able to buy things I could never have afforded ordinarily."
From there, her interest in saving money continued to grow. Hresan learned
other techniques to make her money go further. For example, she changes her
telephone company routinely to take advantage of promotions; orders products
over the internet to find better deals; and uses Virginia Power's budget plan.
Contests and sweepstakes are another integral part of Hresan's lifestyle. She
enters a variety of contests online, through the mail, on the radio and store
giveaways. In the last year, she estimates she's won $15,000 in merchandise.
"I've won everything from magnets and shirts to money and
televisions," she said.
So how much does Hresan save each year by living a frugal lifestyle? She
estimates that she triples her yearly income.
In the future, Hresan hopes to use her knowledge to hold seminars to teach
other people her techniques and she's working on a book. "I want to help
people and teach them that no one should have to be poor," she said. Hresan
admits she accepts free stuff even if she doesn't need it. "I take free dog
food, but I don't have a dog. But if I don't need something, somebody else
will," she said.
Each Christmas, Hresan adopts and family and provides a happy holiday at not
cost to her or the family. She said helping people is what it's all about.
"I'm not a miser; I'm generous with what I get. An important part of life
is giving back," she said.
Most people may not want to go to such extremes to save money. However,
Hresan recommends a few easy tips anyone can follow.
- Visit www.freelancebyu.com
and sign up for Hresan's newsletter. The site can be overwhelming, but the
newsletter discusses the highlights.
- Use coupons and rebates - they add up. Many local stores also offer coupon
- Never pay full price. Watch the sales racks and wait for specials.
- Join an interest-bearing checking account.
- Join a service to pay your bills online.
Currently, Hresan is offering a contest online with special prizes. When
people sign on to the site, they can register.
the above interview is PARAPHRASED and some things didn't come thru correctly in
the translation...........but I am happy to be featured in my hometown newspaper THE
POWHATAN TODAY visit their site to see what
else is going on in my little corner of the world!
FEATURED IN GOCOLLECT AFFILIATE NEWSLETTER
2002 Volume 2 Issue 5
"Angela started her website two years ago with the vision to teach
people that they did not have to struggle in order to save money. She wanted
to offer the BEST FOR LESS to her visitors as a FREE SERVICE to help others
live more lavishly!!
Freelancebyu.com offers ideas and suggestions along with links that enable
visitors to save money in every aspect of their lives, without compromising
their lifestyle. They pride themselves in alerting visitors to only ideas that
they themselves would do.
Freelancebyu.com has grown tremendously, and with a little help from friends,
received a tremendous response. Recently, they were featured on NBC's Today
Show, as well as some other well known media sources!!
to view the NBC video. ........................
.............We hope that you will join us in congratulating GOCOLLECT for
being an "honest" affiliate who must go by the same motto we do 'give and you
We tip our hats off this week to
Be sure to visit Anjie's site and don't forget to let her know we sent ya'! "
Featured in the Richmond (VA)
March 27, 2002
Easter eggonomics: Bargain queen discounts her blessings
BY DOUGLAS DURDEN
TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER
Angela Hresan, recently featured on NBC's "Today" for her
shopping skills, decorates for Easter using items bought on sale after
last Easter. Her gift basket for a teen-age girl (right) contains $91
of goodies bought for less than $5.
In looking for ways to celebrate the season, who better to consult with than
the newly crowned queen of bargain shopping, Powhatan's Angela Hresan.
Hresan, 40, made not one but two recent appearances on NBC's
"Today" promoting the joys of coupons, Internet bargains and rebates.
"Today" co-host Matt Lauer himself was moved to say "You go,
Angela" after Hresan, taped darting in and out of several local stores,
purchased some $333.36 of stuff for a mere $16.27.
"I wouldn't call myself a tightwad or a cheapskate," Hresan told
her TV audience. "I would call myself a saving specialist."
So we thought Hresan might have some tips on how to celebrate Easter with
style and economy.
Hresan recently gave us a crash course in Easter baskets, but also included a
movie-themed basket for her son-in-law and a goody-packed version for teen-age
But first, the Easter eggs.
Hresan, whose quest for economy began when she was a single mom (she has
since remarried), had two concerns when it came to coloring hard-boiled eggs:
coming up with absolutely the cheapest way to dye the eggs, and making sure they
Here are three of her methods. Boil eggs in water containing tea bags and
leftover coffee. Boil eggs in water filled with slightly spoiled oranges,
squeezed first for juice. Boil eggs in water colored by cumin and onion peels.
She'll rub the coffee-stained eggs with margarine to make them shiny. The
cumin-onion-colored eggs get rubbed with a paper towel for a mottled effect. The
results are softly colored eggs to go into color-coordinated baskets.
The truth is, Hresan started her Easter baskets almost 12 months ago - as
soon as last Easter's items went on sale. The candy she adds is more recent,
probably from the 90 percent-off Valentine's Day stash she keeps in her
Yes, the dishwasher. Hresan says she saves money on electricity by washing
her dishes by hand. Plus, she gains handy storage space.
Storage space is a big issue in the Hresan house.
Entire closets are devoted to items bought at a discount. What she doesn't
need or use she donates to charity. The attic is already full and ready for
But that's nothing compared to the fruits of her labor on display. As Hresan
will proudly tell you, she won almost everything in the house.
Big-screen TV in family room - a prize.
Camcorder - a prize.
VCRs - prizes.
CD players - prizes.
Slipcovers - prizes.
Butcher block table in the kitchen - rescued and refurbished into a work of
No one in her family buys T-shirts, she says. She gets so many free ones.
"My husband is a billboard."
There's more. Hresan, a probation officer for Chesterfield County's Domestic
Violence Unit, points to a wall in the kitchen. Originally, she wanted to hang a
large chalkboard. But, after pricing them, she decided to make her own by
painting a wall in chalkboard paint.
Enter the guest bedroom, decorated in a jungle motif provided by pillows,
chair, wallpaper border and accessories.
"This whole room probably cost $50 - and I'm stretching it," says
Hresan, who remembers winning her first contest in the third grade - a Bozo the
Clown prize pack.
It's not an addiction, said Hresan of her need to save money. It's a quest.
Her goal: save at least 75 percent off retail; better yet, 90 percent; even
better yet, get it for free.
But back to the baskets.
We forgot to mention the basket liner made from shredded paper.
In keeping with the soft earth tones, Hresan creates the basket
"nest" from supermarket bags with the help of a paper shredder. Most
of the baskets are the wire variety purchased for $1 from a dollar store.
Hresan's favorite spot for bargains is the Internet, a fact she's willing to
share through her own Web site, www.freelancebyu.com.
The busy site includes links to bargains on DVDs, cameras and magazine
subscriptions, just to name a few possibilities. You'll find rebate information,
contests and tips on grocery shopping.
There's also input from other frugal shoppers.
"The more you teach people, the more they teach you back," said
Hresan, who also produces a free newsletter.
How does she make money from her services? She doesn't.
"I make friends," Hresan answers.
But back to the baskets again. Hresan's movie-themed basket includes
popcorn-flavored candy canes, popcorn bought with a rebate, free movie tickets
from a box of cereal, and a previously viewed DVD.
Her basket for teen-agers, a hit among 14-year-old daughter Kelly's crowd,
includes soap, hair items, stickers, pins, a frame, a CD and makeup. The retail
price adds up to $91.05. Her price: $4.38.
"She's embarrassed when I'm in the grocery store with four carts and a
handful of coupons," Hresan says about Kelly. "But she's not
embarrassed to wear her DKNYs.
"If I won the lottery, I'd still do it."
A BARGAIN NEWSLETTER
Congratulations to our affiliate, Anjie (www.freelancebyu.com)
featured on NBC's The Today Show as a bargain hunter extraordinaire! She
definitely a bargain shopper. I'm sure we will be seeing more of her on
television and in newspapers in the future.
Sign up for her newsletter to get great coupons and deals!
Congratulations Anjie! :)
April 15, 2002
Angela Hresan, a local
probation officer in Community Corrections Servies, and expert shopper, bargain
hunter and money saver, (above with Weekend Today co-host David Bloom) appeared
on the Today Show twice last month. "This ia a Lifestyle for
me," she said, "I save on everything. I don't pay full price for
anything except my daughter's dance lessons, and I'm working on doing some
fund-raising to help with that expense." Hits on Hresan's website www.freelancebyu.com,
increased from 45 to 100 hits each day to more than 170,000 hits the day of her
second Today Show Appearance.
VCCJA News and Views, July
Celebrity Probation Officer
Local Probation Officer, Angela
Hresan of Chesterfield County Community Corrections has become an overnight
sensation since her appearance on the NBC morning show, TODAY!
The personable Hresan was featured on the national television program as
part of a series on saving money. She shared her ideas and plans to help people
with their personal economic issues.
Ms. Hresan showed how one could
really save by incorporating a variety of techniques including coupon clipping,
rebates, and in-store specials. Angela
took the NBC Today Show Crew on a shopping trip in the Chesterfield County area.
She spent less than $17 during the day but purchased $323 worth of
products. Angela also discussed her
which features money saving ideas and links to help stretch even the tightest
Since her initial TODAY show appearance, Angela has been
inundated with even more offers ranging from magazines to other television
opportunities. Showing both the professionalism and attitude that make her a
great probation officer, Angel Hresan continues to shine in her private endeavors!
LOS ANGELES TIMES
AUGUST 24, 2002
ABC and Disney Turn Park Into Synergyland
By GREG BRAXTON , TIMES STAFF WRITER
Rosemarie Soltis is terrified of flying. Just the
thought of getting on an airplane makes her tremble. But the prospect of
spending a few precious moments with John Ritter is giving the 55-year-old
Bolingbrook, Ill., resident the fortitude to hop on a plane today for Los
Cheryl Free, 43, of Fort Wayne, Ind., is also
flying to Los Angeles today to visit Disneyland and Disney's California
Adventure for the first time. But that adventure pales next to her hope for a
hug and a picture with Jim Belushi.
Holland Lehto of San Antonio is also traveling today to Los Angeles, with her
father, for a weekend jaunt at the Magic Kingdom. But the real thrill for the
13-year-old will be meeting comedian Ryan Stiles of the ABC improv series,
"Whose Line Is It Anyway?" She hopes she doesn't get tongue-tied.
These three, along with a throng of other fans from near and very far, are
expected to make a pilgrimage to Disney's California Adventure on Saturday and
Sunday to rub shoulders and cheer more than 70 ABC stars featured in the
network's current and upcoming prime-time lineup.
The ABC Primetime Preview Weekend represents synergy at its purest--stars of
the Disney-owned network promoting their shows at the Disney-owned amusement
centers. Those wishing to bathe in the yellow glow of ABC must shell out the
$35 to $45 admission price for the theme park. The stars getting up close and
personal with fans include Dennis Franz and Mark-Paul Gosselaar of "NYPD
Blue," Damon Wayans of "My Wife and Kids," Dylan McDermott of "The Practice"
and Drew Carey and Stiles of "The Drew Carey Show." The casts of all the new
dramas and comedies such as "8 Simple Rules" with Ritter and Katey Sagal;
"Life With Bonnie," starring Bonnie Hunt; "Less Than Perfect"; and "MDs" will
be introduced, and several of the shows will be screened.
Among other highlights are two live performances of "Whose Line Is It
Anyway?," several ABC Happy Hour Trivia challenges, a daily "parade of stars"
and musical performances by Belushi ("According to Jim") and his Sacred Hearts
Even bands marching in the daily parade will have that ABC flavor. The
Rubidoux High School Marching Band will perform selections from "The Music
Man"--which is one of the original offerings this season on "The Wonderful
World of Disney." The remake stars Matthew Broderick.
The preview marks the first time a network has sent most of its prime-time
talent out at one time to meet viewers. ABC, along with Disney World and
California Adventure, previously has sponsored highly popular weekends
featuring its daytime soap stars. This weekend's event is primarily designed
to hype the new season.
"It's like a big movie opening," said Jeff Bader, executive vice president of
ABC Entertainment and the overseer of ABC's synergy initiative with other
Disney divisions, including theme parks. "It won't make an immediate impact on
ratings, but with the press interest in the event and the buzz surrounding it,
it's really getting the word out. It's all about awareness."
But he admitted that in addition to ABC's being in a unusual position to host
such an event--its parent company owns theme parks--any increase in visibility
is a boost for the troubled network.
ABC executives acknowledged that the network needs all the hype--and help--it
can get to recover from last year's dismal showing, when it lost 20% of its
prime-time audience and fell to fourth place among viewers 18 to 49, the group
advertisers pay the most to reach. Industry insiders have speculated that the
fate of embattled Disney chief Michael Eisner may rest on the network's
performance this season.
Said Bader: "Yes, we do need this now more than ever."
California Adventure could also use the boost. The park next to Disneyland has
drawn disappointing crowds since opening in February 2001.
George Lopez, star of "George Lopez," said he thinks the preview is a great
idea. "These kinds of things are what needs to happen for ABC to get back to
where it needs to be. ABC needs Disney, and Disney needs ABC. It's a great
time to come together and do this. And all the performers are jazzed about
doing this. There seems to be this united togetherness and spirit to lift the
Still, all of the talk of synergy and corporate concern surrounding the
weekend is meaningless to fans such as Free,
Soltis, Lehto and others who are spending up to thousands of dollars to make
"I'm going to do everything on the schedule," said
Free, an office manager in Allen Superior Court
in Fort Wayne. "I watch ABC all the time, and I'm so totally excited about
going to see the stars. I don't like cable. I always watch network television.
Unlike people who say they can't find anything to watch, I always find
Free said she is particularly excited about
seeing Wayans and Belushi: "They really make me laugh. And I've always been a
fan of Jim Belushi. Now I can see him on TV, not just film."
An obsessive fan of sweepstakes, Free won an all-expenses-paid trip to the
preview in a network-sponsored contest. Her companion on the trip will be a
fellow sweepstakes addict, Angela Hresan, 40, a
retired probation officer who lives in Powhatan, Va. The two women have
corresponded for several years by e-mail but have never met. They plan to hook
up in Detroit today and fly to California together.
Hresan said, "I feel like I've won twice! I won
the opportunity to meet my friend and this trip. And I've never been west of
Texas, so this is awesome."
Hresan operates a Web site that teaches people
how to save money and "shows them how to live lavishly for less money."
Although excited, she said that she is not nearly as big a TV fan as Free.
"I'm not star-struck," she said. "Half of those people could probably walk up
to me and I wouldn't know them. But I'll be a bigger fan of TV after this
trip. And it will be great to meet them. After all, they're just like me. I'll
bring my business card and say, 'If you need to save money, let me know.' "
Soltis, who also won her trip in a sweepstakes, said she didn't think she had
a chance of winning: "I'm still in disbelief."
She declared that ABC is indeed her favorite network. "I'm not just saying
that. It's our station of choice. I like the way they have all the sporting
events. Everything is for the family. I'm not afraid to have my grandchildren
And there are a lot of grandchildren. "I have 12, and 13 will come while I'm
gone," she said with a giggle.
Her biggest dream is to meet Belushi. "I want to tell him he's absolutely
great," Solis said. "I want to tell him I love all his movies and to please
give me a hug so I can take a picture."
Of course, there's still the matter of getting on that dreaded airplane. "My
husband says it's just a question of mind over matter," she said. "I've got
medication." She quipped, "A friend told my husband he should take a mallet
with him if I get too boisterous."
Other fans are paying their way to the preview. Thirteen-year-old Young bid
$1,925 in an online auction for a package that will allow her to meet the
"Whose Line" cast and participate in some improv.
Asked who her favorite comedian on the show was, she paused. "I don't like to
choose favorites," she finally said. "But I think Ryan is the funniest. I hope
I don't get too nervous when I meet him."
SEPTEMBER 27, 2002
That's Latin for I messed up. In an article last April about things that
disappear from restaurants, I related a story about a frugality expert who
appeared on NBC's Today show with some menus from an Olive Garden that she
had framed to hang in her home. Angela Hresan, who operates a free Web-based
savings site, did not lift them, as I reported, but rather asked if she
could have them and was given permission to take them.
by: Scott Joseph
Tart on the Street: Getting to Know Your ABCs
Being at a press event isn't easy. Sometimes, you're there because you're
paid to be there. Other times, you truly have a genuine interest in what
you're covering. Sometimes you're a contest winner and are just excited to be
there. With that in mind, Trisha L. Sebastian asked some attendees of the ABC
Primetime Preview Weekend at Disney's California
Adventure the following question:
Tart on the Street: Out of all the ABC shows they're promoting
this weekend, which ones are you looking forward to and why?
Rachael Hunter, radio personality, WDRQ-FM Detroit, Michigan:
There's a couple of them. The Drew Carey Show,
obviously ... Drew's hilarious and so's his cast and I was anxious to talk to
the new girl [Cynthia Watros] that's coming on that used to be on Titus.
I love Damon Wayans; he's my favorite Wayans brother. I think he's completely
sexy and I just love that show, My Wife and Kids.
And Jim Belushi and his show [According to Jim].
Courtney Thorne-Smith who plays his wife, she was one of my favorites on Melrose
Place (I was a big Melrose fan). I'm more
into the comedies than [shows like] Alias and NYPD
Chris Boylan, producer (The Rocky Allen Show), WDVD-FM Detroit,
Michigan: MDs is the most promising [of the
brand new shows]. It's a medical drama with a dash of comedy there. I'm still
smarting from the fact that ABC canceled Sports Night,
The Dennis Leary Show and The
Job, those were my favorite shows. That's why I'm not rooting for MDs
too hard; they'll probably end up canceling it on me anyway.
Jennifer Ruiz, reporter,
Lifestyle: The George Lopez Show [because]
I like the humor. It's [more like] reality for me. I enjoy his comedy style.
Richard Sandoval, publisher,
Lifestyle: The Bachelor, because I'm a
bachelor and I want to pick up some hints.
Brad Blanks, WPLJ-FM New York City, New York: 8
Simple Rules, I'd have to say. I love John Ritter. He's a man of the
eighties, nineties, and now the 0s. The beautiful Katey Sagal, I must say,
she's developed and matured into a fine looking lady: beautiful body, great
smile. A very raunchy couple they're going to make and of course they've got
beautiful daughters there. [There's] the young son running around as well, but
that daughter played by Kaley Cuoco, [she's] damn hot, but I should not be
looking at a female of that age, but I have no doubt she'll develop into a
fine TV actress. She's a stunning young lady.
Joe Pardavila, associate producer (Scott & Todd In The Morning)
WPLJ-FM New York City, New York: I think the one that has pretty much hit
potential is John Ritter's show, 8 Simple Rules. It
seems like it's got a good pedigree, it's got a big time director/producer
[team] who have experience with comedy behind it. It's got a great premise.
The 8 Simple Rules book was a big bestseller. I think
people know the book and they can relate to the story pretty easily and John
Ritter's one of those kinds of legendary TV actors that people seem to love.
If he finds the right role, it's going to be a big hit for him.
John McClintock, Manager of Publicity for the Disneyland Resort: I
can answer that with two things. I would say among the comedies, I'm looking
forward to 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter
because John Ritter and Katey Sagal are such pros and it looks like a funny
show and because I have a teenage daughter, so there's obviously some appeal
there. I am also interested in a show which I know quite frankly little about.
There is going to be a drama called Push, Nevada
that's produced by Ben Affleck. He's not in it, but he's a producer and it is
an interactive show. It's a mystery show about a treasure hunt and people who
watch the show can actually participate and try and find the treasure. So I'm
very curious about that and looking forward to that one.
Brian Paruch, WZZN-FM Chicago, Illinois:I'm looking forward to Monday
Night Football because I've been watching Monday Night Football since I
was born, like most American males if not all and because I really enjoy John
Madden and Al Michaels and [seeing] the two of them together is a great thing.
[It's] a great thing for guys everywhere, and football fans everywhere, women,
too. Out of the shows whose stars we've talked to so far, I think that 8
Simple Rules seems like it would be a pretty funny one. Again, it goes
back to childhood with John Ritter, a guy I've been seeing pretty much my
whole life on TV. He's not only funny onscreen, he's funny in person as well.
It's an honor to be ribbed by a guy as cool as John Ritter. [Seeing] him on
the screen makes me enjoy what he's doing. We haven't talked to the NYPD
Blue people yet but I'm excited about a new season of that. Dennis
Franz has another new partner, setting some sort of record. Those are the ones
that I'm the most excited about.
Mike Bratton, WZZN-FM Chicago, Illinois: I'm looking forward to two
of them. One is the Life with Bonnie show because
for one, Bonnie Hunt is a Chicago native and she has really strong ties to the
city. She was also in Second City and I've done
some stuff with Second City, too. Also, my best
friend is trying to write for the show. I have a whole lot of personal reasons
to watch that. Also I kinda wanna see the John Ritter sitcom, 8
Simple Rules because I've often wondered myself [what I'd do] if I ever
had kids, if I ever had a girl knowing how I was when I was a teenage boy. I'm
pretty much sure I'd keep my daughter under lock and key for a very long time.
It sounds kinda funny, plus it's good to see John Ritter getting work.
Jonathan Alcorn, photographer, STAR Magazine:
I like NYPD Blue because I've been watching it off
and on since it came out. I just think it's a cool show and I think Dennis
Franz is awesome.
Sheryl Free, contest winner: I want to meet Jim Belushi and I've
always been a fan of his, when he was in movies and now on TV [with According
to Jim]. I watch the show every week. He makes me laugh. I want to give
him a great big hug at the very least.
Angela Hresan, contest winner: I want
to see John Ritter's show [8 Simple Rules]. I have
teenagers, and I think it's a very believable premise and I can't wait to see
Jennifer Grevis, reporter,
I'd love to see The Drew Carey Show. It's in its
eighth season and they're scheduled to run for nine seasons and I'd like to
see the changes and the characters on the show.
DECEMBER 15, 2002
Retailers Try to Tease Out
Sales With Web Bargains
By DEXTER WEBB
Staff Reporter of THE
Retailers are bracing themselves for lackluster
sales -- and that may be good news for price-conscious consumers.
Many retailers, disappointed by November sales,
are looking to boost business on their Web sites by offering such incentives as
deep discounts and free shipping. As a result, for shoppers, "online
shopping is the key" to stretching your dollar, says one Web-site owner,
Anjie Hresan, whose freelancebyu.com provides information on shopping deals.
One recent survey backs up the claim that
bargain hunters are going to the Web to find deals. An eSpending Report by
Goldman Sachs & Co., Harris Interactive and Nielsen//NetRatings found that
40% of the shoppers surveyed said lower prices online was a key reason they
chose to shop on the Web instead of visiting a store.
One way to get a good bargain online, says Ms.
Hresan, is to find items that are already on sale and then use online coupons to
save even more. You can find coupon codes, accepted by most merchants, at sites
such as consumerworld.com and shopping-bargains.com.
Most retailers dedicate a section of their Web
site to sale and clearance items.
"You'll often find good deals with free
shipping" in these sections, says Sandy Shields of frugalshopper.com, a Web
site offering money-saving tips.
Here are some specifics to consider as you
complete your holiday shopping:
Electronics. With free-shipping offers from
many of the big retailers like Circuit City Stores Inc. and Best Buy Co.,
electronics, including computers, remain one of the better deals around, Ms.
Hresan says. You may also find bargains at overstock.com, a Web site
specializing in clearance items, which charges a token flat shipping fee of
$2.95, she says.
Books and magazines. There still are hot deals
to be found in this category, a traditional favorite among online shoppers. Ms.
Shields suggests scouring sites like half.com -- which is owned by eBay -- and
Amazon.com for bargains. Barnes & Noble Inc. offers free shipping if you
order two or more items over the Web, but you have to order by Dec. 16 to ensure
delivery before Dec. 25. Ms. Shields says you can get full-year magazine
subscriptions for as little as $4 at sites such as magazinevalues.com and
Apparel. To get the best deals on clothing, try
to shop at third party sites instead of at the retailer's site. That way you may
avoid or minimize shipping costs. Also, Ms. Shields suggests trolling at holiday
sales at some of the less-popular apparel Web sites such as blair.com and
coldwatercreek.com, which may be offering better prices than more popular sites
such as Gap.com.
Gift certificates. Auction sites, such as eBay
and uBid, may help with this gift. Ms. Hresan says she recently got two
restaurant certificates valued at $50 for $8.40 in eBay's restaurant section.
You might find similar savings at a site such as restaurant.com, Ms. Shields
NOTE: I told him to use my
links.........LOL but he didn't listen :) and freelancers know that they can
find the CODES AND COUPONS
VOLUME 1, issue 15
December 16, 2002
Our congratulations goes out to
FreelanceByU.com for being our top partner
for the third month in a row. If you haven't visited their site yet, you will
find all kinds of freebies, shopping and coupon codes, and much more that will
save you money on a wide variety of goods and services.
March 7, 2003
By Jamie Busen
Herald-Whig Staff Writer
Maybe there IS such a thing as a free lunch.
Internet addicts can receive more than 100 e-mail messages per day from
various Web sites. Within these messages are links to dozens of coupons,
free samples, discounts, specials, newsletters, magazines and more. Those
links can lead to hundreds of dollars of merchandise coming to your home.
From aspirin to shampoo to makeup to lotion to shaving gel to throat
lozenges, everyday could be like Christmas in your mailbox.
Just like the coupons for the traditional stores at which you shop for
groceries and clothes, gazillions of codes, coupons and samples are
available for those stores on the information superhighway.
Anjie Hresan, who lives near Richmond, Va., has been operating a Web site
called freelancebyu.com for three years. She has been doing a newsletter
since 1994 when she was a "starving student."
"I have been a 'savings specialist' for more than 20 years now,"
said. "I taught myself how to get free things and great deals out of
necessity, being a single parent with little or no guidance from my own
She turned her art into a lifestyle.
People were amazed at the things she had obtained on a fraction of their
salary, and they wanted to know how she got them. Hresan started e-mailing
friends and family to let them know where to find good deals, rebates,
etc., in the brick and mortar stores and the on-line stores.
Rebates are available for every store you can imagine: blank CDs at
Staples, an office chair at Office Depot, towels at JC Penney.
Once the Internet developed into a worldwide shopping haven, Hresan started
letting friends know about freebies, contests and deals on the Web. Her
list of Web followers is 7,000 - and that number is growing daily. Hresan
has been featured on the "Today" show and in the Wall Street
Dozens of Web sites promote that they will send you free stuff, but it
takes time to sift through them to find ones that deliver on their promise.
Those who get Hresan's newsletter receive a daily e-mail with different
hyperlinks to click on and a description of what you can get.
Want a free sample of shampoo? Clicking on the link takes you to a form to
be filled out and submitted. In a few weeks, you'll have shampoo in your
mailbox at home.
Some links can take you to coupons off certain products, like laundry
detergent or hair dye. Web users can print out the coupons and take them to
the stores they shop at. Other links send Web users to companies that offer
free samples of their products.
Hresan used to work two full-time jobs and a few part-time jobs, and she
was "getting no sleep whatsoever." Now she stays online just about
time, and it's her only full-time job. She works part-time elsewhere to
supplement her income. "It takes about six to eight hours to put a good
newsletter together," she said.
Her newsletters are divided into several categories, such as bargains,
freebies and rewards. She also has suggestions for using eBay and supplies
"Winning Wanda Suggests," where a freelancer (that's what Hresan
members) lists suggested contests to enter.
Hresan gets a lot of her information from members. She scours thousands of
e-mails daily and picks out many freebies and deals. She also does a lot of
"I don't promote a bunch of bunk like many freebie newsletters do just to
make money," she said. "I only promote what I do myself and trust to
valid. If I wouldn't do a deal or a freebie, I won't put it in my
newsletter. I don't care how much money I could make from it."
Hresan says she intends to write a book and put together a national program
to teach people the skills they need to be independent and self-reliant.
"There is no reason for anyone in America to be poor or to do without
necessities, because there are so many opportunities out there," she
She believes people can save money by subscribing to newsletters such as hers.
"You can live lavishly for less if you just give it a try," Hresan
APRIL 15th ISSUE OF WOMAN'S DAY
On the stands 4/1/03
18 Ways to Stash
Simple moneysavers that really work
Dig Out of Debt
15. Make a second register in your checkbook.
Whenever you use your credit card, deduct the amount from the total balance in
your checkbook, says Angela Hresan,
owner of the web site www.freelancebyu.com,
which offers tips on where to find great sales, coupons and free samples on the
Internet. This will keep you from spending more money than you have, unless
it’s a true emergency. When the credit-card bill arrives, you’ll have the
money in the bank, saving you a lot in interest charges.
Planning Makes Perfect
16. Get strategic. When Debrie Woods of Birmingham,
Alabama, wants to buy a big-ticket item, she finds out how much it costs, adds
in the taxes and sets a goal date. “I divide the item’s cost by the number
of paychecks I’ll get between now and my goal date, then I put aside that
amount monthly.” But only set realistic goals. “Don’t set a three-month
goal when it will take six months to get the item. It will leave you stressed
17. Research what you want. Comparing prices around
town and on the Internet is the key to making sure you get the absolute best
deal possible, says Hresan.
She also points out that researching keeps you busy thinking about the item you
want, so you’re less likely to succumb to impulse buys.
18. Make sure your choices support your goals. “If
you get your hair or nails done every three weeks, stretch it out to four weeks
for approximately a thirty-three percent savings,” says John Waskin, executive
director of BillFree, a nonprofit credit counseling agency. “Or pack your
lunch once a week for an annual pretax savings of approximately five hundred
APRIL 6, 2003
Group bargains on thrift
Penny Pincher shares ideas on economy of frugality
BY ANDREA CICCOCIOPPO
Of Our Carlisle Bureau
CARLISLE - Kevin and Phyllis Cogan are thrifty and proud of it. It just
made good sense while they were raising their seven children.
Though they have only two children left at home, the Carlisle couple are
still careful not to waste time or money in the course of their daily lives, and
they shared a few of their money-saving tips with others at the first meeting of
the Penny Pincher Forum.
The group met at the Bosler Free Library to exchange tips.
Kevin Cogan rides his bike two miles to work, saving gas and time, and
makes his own pancakes from scratch instead of buying the more expensive frozen
His secret for figuring out bargains is to "translate things into a
common unit of measure and then compare."
He pointed out a 9-ounce bottle of Evian water costs about $1.49, but if
you convert that into price per gallon, it's $21.19 per gallon.
"Shopping has always been an exercise in thrift," Phyllis Cogan
said, though she admitted she's not as bargain-conscious as her husband.
"It's automatic with him, it's just the way he thinks."
Other participants offered creative ways to cut costs.
"I turn envelopes inside out, re-glue them and reuse them," said
Barbara Vorhes of South Middleton Twp.
Vorhes came to the meeting with several ideas for re-using things that
most people just throw away.
"I reuse paper towels ... the plastic wrappers from popcorn packets
... mesh potato bags," she said.
And she uses dryer lint stuffed into an empty paper towel tube as a
Kathy Lee of Carlisle
pointed out a Web site that she frequently checks for offers.
"I probably made $250 in test-driving cars last
year," she said.
Lee uses www.freelancebyu.com
to find coupons and money-earning opportunities.
"Some days there's nothing on there; other days
there are coupons or rebates," she said. "It has links for shopping,
Tienya Smith, assistant library director, who facilitated the group,
revealed one product that she uses for a variety of chores: boric acid, which
can be found in the cleaning aisle at the local grocery store.
"If you add 1 teaspoon of boric acid to each load, you can reduce
your laundry soap by one half," Smith said.
And, she said, you can eliminate those expensive detergents by using a
teaspoon each of boric acid and baking soda in the dishwasher.
Smith said the tips from the forum will be posted online at www.ccpa.net/Bosler.
The next meeting of the Penny Pincher Forum will be at 7 p.m. June 5 in
Fun on the Web
Think being frugal means being deprived and miserable? Are
you conjuring up images of plain oatmeal and washing laundry by hand?
Digital — May 1, 2003
Judith M. Levinton
Think again! A
large number of Web sites have great ideas for revitalizing your home, personal
care, and any number of areas in your life at a lower cost. More money left over
at the end of the month means you can do anything from investing it, becoming
debt-free, or using it for the dream vacation you always wanted without racking
up credit card debt. It’s not a fantasy! Take a trip down these sites and see
I like to read
articles as well as tips to motivate me to think creatively and have fun. The
has a wide range of articles on innovative ways to be frugal and treat yourself
well. Articles for personal care include “Frugal Workouts,” “All Natural
Masks,” and “Spa Vacation at Home.”
out the main index, I saw categories such as Hobbies, Humor, Pets, and Romance.
Okay, I’ll admit it—I looked in the romance category to see what was offered
and found articles like “25 Free or Cheap Dates,” “Romantic Valentine’s
Day Ideas,” and “True Romance for Couples with Kids.” Then I turned to
Hobbies, where articles such as “Feeding the Birds” and “Soapmaking:
Recipes and Directions” are located.
that other categories also contain fun activities. In the Holidays category I
found “Gifts in a Jar,” “Halloween Costumes and Parties,” “Inexpensive
Christmas and Hanukkah Gifts.” In the Home Decorating category, I found
“Simple Room Makeovers,” among many others topics. The Recipes category
abounds with suggestions to make eating delicious, fun, and entertaining, with
recipes such as Chicken with Grapes, Spiced Apples, and The Chocolate Theory.
The site http://www.frugalfinesse.com/
is all about living simply in style. It offers articles such as “Trash to
Treasure,” “Dimestore Decorating,” “Diary of a Packrat,” and
“Cookin’ Cheap.” Under the category called Tightwad Tips you’ll find a
hodgepodge of ways to use various items such as burned-out light bulbs, outgrown
T-shirts, and even an old sock.
Tightwad at http://www.ridleypark.net/tightwad/columns.html
has upbeat articles on saving money on items like music, books, ink for your
inkjet printer, and even light bulbs. The site proclaims: “The Happy Tightwad
tells you how to avoid overpaying and achieve true contentment on earth. Or at
least—have some money left over after your purchases to devote to the pursuit
of happiness.” Sounds good to me.
Frugal Times at http://www.frugaltimes.com/
offers ideas on making homemade cleaners, budget furniture fix-ups, and cooking
with kids. Clicking to Frugal Tips, I found categories from gardening (I never
knew that roses love crushed egg shells) to automobiles.
For all you
gardeners out there, there is a wealth of material designed to allow you to
enjoy your gardens without breaking your budget. A site describing itself as The
World’s Greatest Garden Tightwad Tips at http://www.directoryofgreatdeals.com/home_and_garden1.htm
may be what you need. Or drop by Gardening Frugally at http://frugalliving.about.com/cs/gardeningfrugally/,
which offers articles on everything from container gardening to fertilizer to
finding flowers for free.
shopping with a frugal eye can save literally hundreds of dollars off your
grocery bill. A good site to start is Frugal Recipes at http://www.freelancebyu.com/recipes.htm,
which combines recipes from readers and other sources. The site also provides
links to other sites such as CopyKat Recipes, which says it can help you
“create your favorite restaurant dishes at a fraction of the price.”
Cooking on a
Shoestring, at http://www.mommysavers.com/cooking_on_a_shoestring.htm,
has categories such as Meals in Minutes, Side Dishes, and Delicious Desserts.
And Frugal Recipes for Good Food at http://frugalliving.about.com/cs/frugalrecipes1/
has many food ideas worth dipping into, such as making your own popsicles, and
pretzels, starting your own sourdough starter, and making skillet meals and
meatless meals. Frugal Recipes [http://www.frugalrecipes.com/html/index.php]
offers recipes such as Kung Pao Chicken and Butternut Squash Gratin to whet the
appetite and leave cash in your pocket.
(sounds boring, doesn’t it?) at http://www.budget101.com/
is actually an interesting place to visit because of articles like
“inexpensive Gag Gifts” (reindeer poop, anyone?) and more than 750 different
mixes/jar gift ideas.
Do you buy
makeup? That can take a large chunk out of your wallet. The Frugal Diva at http://www.frugaldiva.com/default.asp
believes you can be divine on a budget. The site includes reviews of different
cosmetics available at very reasonable prices (all under $15). However, there is
no mention of which cosmetics companies are cruelty-free.
Frugal Face at http://www.thefrugalface.com/
has some wake up calls for women who buy expensive makeup. Along with some fun
and creative makeup tips, the site talks seriously about looking good while
saving money—and possibly considering early retirement with the money saved
and invested! The site mentions brands by name, but again, there’s no way of
knowing which brands are cruelty-free. The owner says her site isn’t being
updated so prices may have changed.
A host of beauty
tips can be found at http://beauty.about.com/cs/frugalbeauty/,
which includes articles such as “Five Frugal Cosmetic Tips” and “Make Your
Own Cleansing Cloths.”
Worried that the cost will sink you like quicksand? Fear not: There are a number
of Web sites eager to show you how to have a wonderful wedding while saving for
that new house. At The Frugal Bride at http://www.thefrugalbride.cjb.net/,
you’ll find articles like “A Wedding for $1,400!?,” “Invitations for
Less,” and “Reception Ideas.”
to tightwad weddings can be found at http://www.frugalfun.com/weddings.html,
where the costs ranged from $300-$3,000. In an era where that would barely cover
the cost of the flowers, that’s no mean feat.
traditional ideas, USA Bride, at http://www.usabride.com/frugal/,
broke down the wedding category into Wedding Fashion, Flowers and Décor, and
Catering. Clicking on the link for Flowers and Décor led me to links such as
Decorating the Reception and Bouquets and Corsages.
Did you think
that being thrifty meant staying close to home? At The Travel Tightwad [http://www.elliott.org/tightwad/],
you’ll find articles for saving money while on the road. For instance, you
might want to read “Fly or Drive?” and “Good Deals are ‘Inn’
Season,” which talks about how staying at a B&B could save you money.
Magazine, two articles offer very interesting perspectives for travel and also
helpful links to back them up. To read them, go to http://www.travellady.com/Issues/Issue65/65-tightwad.htm
Four Tips for
Frugal Travel (which is actually a misnomer because there were more than four
helpful links and tips) is a helpful site located at http://budgettravel.about.com/library/weekly/aa052002d.htm.
For those who like to camp, a visit to http://members.aol.com/frugally4u/campingtips.html
can provide you with handy tips.
At All Things
click on the link for Decorating Help for an impressive list of articles, which
include “Decorating with Pattern,” “Disguising a Ruined Tabletop,” and
“Feng Shui.” This is quite an eclectic mix. Also on the site are some fun
ideas for kids, such as “Rainy Day Project” and “Fun with Invisible
Newsletter at http://www.smart-penny.com/Watchthepennies.htm
has a crafts section that gives instructions on making cool crayons and a
chalkboard table, among other projects. There’s also some interesting personal
information about the woman who maintains the site (she practices what she
Do you have
kids? Or just feel like being silly? Making Halloween costumes instead of buying
them can be fun and thrifty. Go to http://www.20ishparents.com/holiday/halloween/frugalcostumes.shtml.
Family activities can be found at http://members.aol.com/dsimple/familyfun.html.
One article is titled “200+ Ideas for Family Fun.”
Ever want to
make a musical rain stick? Or soap? How about some wonderful chocolate
concoctions? GreenSense at http://www.greensense.com/GR_LIV.HTM
shows you how. This site offers many articles and links that cover a lot of
different topics, such as How To Make Window Quilts, Build a Worm Bin, and Build
an Inexpensive Playhouse, among other offerings. The site is a bit offbeat but
fun to read.
So turn to the
Web for myriad ideas on how to think creatively, save money, and get exactly
what you want. Enjoy!
Judith M. Levinton is a
freelance writer who’s currently studying to become a hospital chaplain. She
lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.
August 27, 2003
As seen on the TODAY SHOW! Join 'Anjie & The Freelancers Gang' as they
scour the net for opportunities to share with you including Contests, Surveys,
Rewards, Coupons, and Special Deals! There are many offers for the young and old
alike! Grab a cup of coffee and visit http://FreelanceBYU.com/
for the best of the NET so you can LIVE LAVISHLY FOR LESS!
MARCH 18 2004
Since the last newsletter on March 12, our champion new member referrer was freelancebyu
from Powhatan, Virginia. A member since July 2002, freelancebyu has referred 261
new members, and a whopping 171 of them joined in the last 6 days! She operates
the FreelanceByU website at http://www.freelancebyu.com/,
which is chock-full of money-saving tips and links to bargains all over the web.
As a token of appreciation for helping us grow, we'll be sending freelancebyu
a $50 gift certificate from our BookCrossing
Supply Store. Want to win the $50 prize next newsletter? Get busy referring
people! The best tactic: release lots of books so new members will find them and
join. The next-best tactic: use our Tell-a-Friend form to quickly send an email
invitation to everyone you know:
ANJIE NOTE: this was a BIG
surprise, as I didn't even know they were having a contest! WOOOOOO
The "3 Rs" of BookCrossing...
- Read a good book (you already know how to
- Register it (along with your journal
comments), get a unique BCID (BookCrossing ID number),
and label the book
- Release it for someone else to read (give
it to a friend, leave it on a park bench, donate it to charity,
"forget" it in a coffee shop, etc.), and get notified by email
each time someone comes here and records journal entries for that book. And
if you make Release Notes on the book, others can Go Hunting for it and try
to find it!
Saturday August 14, 2004
Subject: Congratulations to the SirPrizes Power Referrer of the
Week, Angela H. of Powhatan!
We'd like to congratulate our first Power Referrer of the Week, Angela H.
of Powhatan, who wins a $10 bonus prize. Those who are loyal readers of
updates probably noticed the same thing that we did--that Angela has been a
consistent winner, including a monthly prize, and July's referral contest.
We spoke to Angela and tried to find out the secrets to her success.
It turns out that Angela H. is famed freebie finder Anjie of
FreelanceByU.com and Today Show fame
Angela scours the Web for great
deals, and when she ran across SirPrizes, she knew she had to tell her
readers about us.
While you may not have appeared on the Today show, you can certainly apply
some of Angela's techniques to you own referring.
SIR PRIZES TEAM
"What's running hot... from
Virginia to Australia: Anjie Hresan, a resident of
Powhatan, Virginia (USA) is winning a legion of fans with the charitable
instinct behind her
FreelanceByU website for frugal shoppers - new to Lovemarks since
THE BOOK BITCH
Anjie won a free copy of GOING POSTAL by Terry Pratchett and sent me this happy picture -- Congrats, Anjie!
TRUE LEMON NEWSLETTER
JUNE 15th 2005
TRUE LEMON™ SUPER FAN ANGELA HRESAN
AND HER GROUP, FREELANCEBYU
Our Super Fan Angela Hresan came to our attention when we started getting lots of emails from her group Freelancebyu, whose motto is “living lavishly for less”.
Anjie's website, www.flbyu.com, is all about smart shopping and big-time savings. It offers the best and most current on-line deals, coupons, articles and information about how to “never pay full price”. In fact, Anjie's money-saving know-how has become so recognized, that in 2002 she was selected share her shopping expertise on the Today Show!
“The word ‘freelancers' applies to all of the members of my website that work as ‘savings specialists', making and saving money on the web. There are now many sites that offer deals and more but none that I know of that stay on the cutting edge, offering a complete lifestyle of living lavishly for less!” Angie states proudly.
“All I can say is I have won quite a lot of prizes, took advantage of a lot of great bargains and even have gotten free items since being a member of the Freelancebyu team. You really can live better by being a member of this web site!” adds Louise Holt, a Freelancebyu member.
Sarah Sartain, a member for over three years, agrees. “Freelancebyu is unique. Angie tests almost everything that's on the website so you know it's a valid offer. At this website, you end up with good friends and good deals.”
Freelancebyu's 10,000 plus members share a love of saving money, and like Sarah said, making friends with “kindred spirits”. And when this very active group of people gets behind a product, the results can be astounding as we at True Lemon™ know. The Freelancebyu group has been so supportive of True Lemon™: members not only have recommended True Lemon™ on their website and other websites but they also give True Lemon™ samples out, promote True Lemon™ to restaurants and stores, and have even nominated True Lemon™ for a variety of distinctions including a mention on the customer-driven website, www.lovemarks.com.
“My members and I love True Lemon™; we love the company and the customer service! Word of mouth is the best form of advertising and we are really happy to support a product like True Lemon™ which so many of us use,” says Anjie.
Echoes Lilly Petronka, a Freelancebyu member and fan of True Lemon™, “True Lemon™ is something I've been hoping for, for a long time. I got tired of buying lemons that go bad and get all yucky in the refrigerator. I was also using lemon juice, lemon extract and other lemon products; now I just need one – True Lemon ™, it serves the purpose for so many things – it's a dream come true! True Lemon™ also saves me tons of money with not having to purchase all of those other lemony products! It's easy to store, takes up much less space than all the others and I can take it with me!”
The invention of Freelancebyu was truly rooted in necessity. Long before she headed such an active organization, Anjie was a single mother of two girls, working full-time and finishing college. Over the years, she learned so many strategies for couponing, sweepstakes and finding great deals that once she even took home $425 worth of groceries for 27 cents!
Anjie's friends and family also began to rely upon her money-saving tips and her uncanny ability to score great bargains, so about ten years ago, Anjie began emailing her tips in a newsletter. As word spread, more and more people outside of Anjie's immediate circle sought a chance to share in her wealth of savings information. When Anjie started an Internet group, demand to join quickly grew so large that after one year, more than 200 members were participating. More shoppers seeking to shop smarter join every year.
“ I've been a member since my daughter saw Anjie on the Today Show. Saving money is surely a good thing, but words can't even describe how much more there is to being one of its members. Anjie is a dedicated, loving, caring, unselfish woman, who promotes good will, sharing, and because of her I have not only been able to live lavishly for less, but I have made the most wonderful friends. Freelancebyu is surely one of the best websites on the internet!” exclaims Marie O'Reilly.
Although she was a social worker for many years, Anjie now oversees the Freelancebyu website full time. When not working 10-hour-plus days on the website or writing articles about saving money, Anjie spends time with her fiancé and family. She also loves to cook, garden, take photographs, make crafts and volunteer for projects like Operation Santa, which Freelancebyu has supported for several years.
Anjie's goals for Freelancebyu.com are many, but to Anjie the ultimate goal is not only living lavishly for less, but it is also giving lavishly too! “I believe in and promote random acts of kindness and strongly believe that giving in life is the only way to be gifted.”
To learn more about freelancebyu, click here: www.flbyu.com .
OCTOBER 3rd 2005
Smart grocery shoppers regain ground against gas prices
By Janet Simons, Rocky Mountain News
Katrina and Rita have finished battering the Gulf Coast, but they're not done with our pocketbooks.
Assuming we all adjust to huge leaps in the cost of heating our homes and driving our cars, we might also face increases in the prices of other consumer goods as rising energy expenses ratchet up the costs of agriculture, food processing, manufacturing and shipping.
Unfortunately, there's little wiggle room in the prices of gasoline and natural gas.
But food is a different story. There are plenty of grocery bargains, and the thrill of the hunt goes with finding them. When we asked readers to tell us about their supermarket victories, we were regaled with stories from proud shoppers who tackle each trip to the store with the same kind of verve and grit that drove Sir Edmund Hillary up Mount Everest.
Anjie Hresan, a probation officer who once managed to buy $333.36 worth of stuff for $16.27 while Today show cameras were rolling, started serious couponing when she was a single mother trying to live on next to nothing. She's remarried now and does it mostly for the adventure.
"The idea is to live lavishly for less," said Hresan, who lives in Powhatan, Va., and dishes out deals and advice on the FreelancebyU.com Web site. "You shouldn't have to live on peanut butter - but if you do, use it to make cookies."
Indulgence will always be important, no matter how tight money gets, says consumer-trend analyst Mary Meehan of Minneapolis- based Iconoculture. It just may come on a different scale for a while."With limited discretionary income, priorities change and shoppers will rethink big purchases and extravagances like expensive cable-TV packages," she said. "Instead, I think we'll see renewed interest in creating a sanctuary in the home for friends and family - home entertaining, even potlucks."
Meehan also predicts growing popularity for couponing and other bargain-hunting practices.
"Consumers are going to be very vigilant about what goes into their carts, and coupons will be important for those on a budget," she said. "They can make shopping a lot less painful."
And even fun. Here are a few of our readers' stories.
• Katrina Wright, of Aurora, says she approaches shopping like "a kid in a candy store."
"When I look at my receipt and it says I saved $150, it's just astonishing - and it feels really good," she said. Wright likes the 10-for-$10 deals at Albertsons, and her favorite store is Grocery Warehouse, the Albertsons discount outlet.
• Jim Arneill, a retired bank officer who shops at the King Soopers at East Ninth Avenue and Corona Street, says that he doesn't need to scrimp but that he loves to look at a grocery receipt that shows he saved more than 40 percent.
"I'm quite well-off financially," he said. "I could buy anything. But why not get 50 percent off?"
• Annie Raines, of Denver, says she had a great shopping day recently at Safeway when she found what apparently were beef tenderloins marked and priced as pork shoulder blade. She bought all they had - six packages.
"I wasn't going to let them sit there," she said. "I'd gone with a $20 bill in my pocket, and I got back enough change to buy pickles and a soda. By the way, they were delicious! Ka-ching!"
• Penny Utzinger, 82, of Denver, called to brag about the shopping skills of her friend James Bronson, 78, who has done all the shopping for both of them for 34 years."He saved $22 just today," she said. "He always clips coupons, and he never buys anything unless it's on sale. I'll say, 'Let's get some of this,' and he'll say: 'No, let's wait. They're going to put that on sale next week.' And he's always right."
A guide to the game
Here are some tips on winning the shopping game gleaned from readers and other grocery gurus.
• Buy your cleaning supplies at a dollar store or other odd-lot store where they tend to be deeply discounted. Call first to see whether the store takes manufacturer's coupons.
• Gather coupons wherever you can find them, including the backs of cash-register tapes, dispensers in the aisles of the stores, mailers and sites such as www.Boodle.com.
• Always check the clearance racks in the back of the store. If you can use a coupon on a clearance item, you might get it practically for free.
• Generate feedback. Jim Arneill of Denver often calls companies to ask questions, comment on changes or tell them he likes their products. They sometimes send coupons to express their appreciation. (Many products have 800 numbers printed on the packages.)
• Check the ads. You can predict what will be on sale soon if you look at which companies are offering big promotions in the Sunday-newspaper coupon supplements, says couponing expert Anjie Hresan of Powhatan, Va.
• Organize your coupons. There are several coupon-sorting products on the market. We've tried The Couponizer, sold online at www.TheCouponizer.com for $20, and found that it makes it easy to sort, file, find and use coupons.
• Check out Web sites devoted to saving money on shopping, including FreelancebyU.com, FrugalforLife. com, Refundcents.com, Thegrocerygame.com and Couponmom.com. If you'd like to tell readers about other good sites or post your discoveries and find out about more deals locally, visit the Shop Smart blog at blogs.rockymountainnews.com/denver/simons/.
How a 'pro' does it
Dawn Cadwell, of Lone Tree, a sharp shopper who runs the FrugalforLife (AND
IS A FREELANCEBYU.COM MEMBER!) , met the challenge of beating the price of groceries at Costco warehouse and Wal-Mart, and she did it by shopping only at Safeway and King Soopers. Here's how:
• Whole-bean coffee:
A $3 coupon from a Safeway coupon book distributed at the Cherry Creek store reopening brings the price of a 10-ounce package of Safeway Select coffee, usually $6.59, to $3.59, or $5.74 a pound.
• Sandwich bread:
OvenJoy, 1 pound, 69 cents on sale at Safeway
• Chunk light tuna:
Chicken of the Sea, sale on 6-ounce cans at Safeway, four for $3 or 75 cents apiece, $2 a pound
• Peanut butter:
Safeway brand, 28-ounce jar on sale for $2, $1.14 a pound.
On sale at Safeway, 33 cents a pound
Free at King Soopers with a coupon Cadwell earned by spending $10 on Pepperidge Farm and Campbell's products
• Lean hamburger:
$1.33 a pound on a "reduced for quick sale" coupon at Safeway.
One-pound package of Kroger brand, 51 cents "everyday low price" at King Soopers.
Cadwell's totals came to $9.37 for the food basket and $11.74 for the combined unit prices.
simonsj@RockyMountainNews.com or 303-892-2547
13 , 2005
Eighty-eight Racing Fans Will Ride with Jeff Green and Kyle Petty In This Weekend's Race in Charlotte
CLICK FOR LARGER IMAGE
MINNEAPOLIS - Oct. 13, 2005 - The next time Jeff Green or Kyle Petty tear down a straightaway or take on a treacherous turn, they'll have 88 race fans riding along with them. That's because both the Cheerios/Betty Crocker #43 Dodge and the Georgia Pacific #45 Dodge will carry the images of fans who were selected through a Fan Fest sweepstakes earlier this year.
Race fans from all across the country will be featured. Forty-three winners will see their smiling faces on Jeff Green's #43 Dodge and 45 winners will see their faces on Kyle Petty's #45 Dodge for the upcoming race on Saturday in Charlotte, at the Lowe's Motor Speedway.
"These new paint schemes will pay tribute to the one member of our team that makes racing so great --- our fans," says Richard Petty, team owner. "It will be fun for everyone to see their faces on the cars as they race in Charlotte."
The paint schemes will feature race fans, male and female, from all over the United States including California, New York and Texas. Among the winners include:
Angela Hresan Powhatan VA car # 45
article by JANET SIMMONS
Unfortunately, there's little wiggle room in the prices of gasoline and natural gas.
But food is a different story. There are plenty of grocery bargains, and the thrill of the hunt goes with finding them. Some proud shoppers tackle each trip to the store with the same kind of verve and grit that drove Sir Edmund Hillary up Mount Everest.
Anjie Hresan, for example, a probation officer who once managed to buy $333.36 worth of stuff for $16.27 while Today show cameras were rolling, started serious coupon-collecting when she was a single mother trying to live on next to nothing. She's remarried now and does it mostly for the adventure.
"The idea is to live lavishly for less," said Hresan, who lives in Powhatan, Va., and dishes out deals and advice on the
FreelancebyU.com Web site. "You shouldn't have to live on peanut butter - but if you do, use it to make cookies."
Indulgence will always be important, no matter how tight money gets, says consumer-trend analyst Mary Meehan of Minneapolis-based Iconoculture. It just may come on a different scale for a while.
"With limited discretionary income, priorities change and shoppers will rethink big purchases and extravagances like expensive cable-TV packages," Meehan said. "Instead, I think we'll see renewed interest in creating a sanctuary in the home for friends and family - home entertaining, even potlucks."
Meehan also predicts growing popularity for coupon collecting and other bargain-hunting practices.
"Consumers are going to be very vigilant about what goes into their carts, and coupons will be important for those on a budget," she said. "They can make shopping a lot less painful."
And even fun. Here are a few stories from the frontlines of the grocery wars:
- Katrina Wright, of Aurora, Colo., said she approaches shopping like "a kid in a candy store."
"When I look at my receipt and it says I saved $150, it's just astonishing - and it feels really good," she said. Wright likes the 10-for-$10 deals at Albertsons supermarkets, and her favorite store is Grocery Warehouse, the Albertsons discount outlet.
- Jim Arneill, a retired bank officer who shops at the King Soopers in Denver, said that he doesn't need to scrimp, but he loves to look at a grocery receipt that shows he saved more than 40 percent.
"I'm quite well-off financially," he said. "I could buy anything. But why not get 50 percent off?"
- Annie Raines, also of Denver, said she had a great shopping day recently at a Safeway supermarket when she found what apparently were beef tenderloins marked and priced as pork shoulder blade. She bought all they had - six packages.
"I wasn't going to let them sit there," she said. "I'd gone with a $20 bill in my pocket, and I got back enough change to buy pickles and a soda. By the way, they were delicious! Ka-ching!"
- Penny Utzinger, 82, bragged about the shopping skills of her friend, James Bronson, 78, who has done all the shopping for both of them for 34 years.
"He saved $22 just today," she said. "He always clips coupons, and he never buys anything unless it's on sale. I'll say, 'Let's get some of this,' and he'll say: 'No, let's wait. They're going to put that on sale next week.' And he's always right."
NOTE: this article was syndicated
to MANY NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS ON OCT 17, 2005 AND/OR OCT 18, 2005
Mutual loyalty makes them royalty on the web
Freelancebyu.com is a website that provides information and support in ways to save time and money. Members of the website are known as “Freelancers”, a community of individuals from every socio-economic group who enjoy the thrill of a deal. Freelancebyu founder and web queen, Angie Henley, shares her inspirational insights.
Lovemarks: Why do you think consumers love your service?
Angie Henley: Freelancers love Freelancebyu because it shares a plethora of reputable and quality information and this sets us apart from the rest. We only promote the best sources, and what is shared is not driven by commission but by the quality of service, product and website. My heart is in my website business. My passion for what I do is contagious, and people like to have passion in their lives!
LMKS: Lovemarks is premised on the Love/Respect Axis and attaining both High Love and High Respect. How do you relate this idea to the way Freelancebyu works from day to day?
AH: Some Freelancers have gone through life never believing that they could afford to pay their bills, obtain items of “luxury”, give to their own families and well as charities or others in need. They quickly learn that not only is this possible with our tips and tools, but probable. Once this epiphany occurs they have plenty of respect, not only for our website, but for themselves. They share this respect and love freely among Freelancers and those in their communities on a regular basis as the effect of this practice is very rewarding.
LMKS: An idea associated with Lovemarks is the idea of Loyalty Beyond Reason. In thinking about Freelancebyu, how, in broad terms, do you define loyalty?
AH: Loyalty translates to ‘royalty’ in Freelancebyu speak. Our allegiance to our members and our focus on our mission helps people to achieve their own growth, and in turn, this helps us grow too. Our mutual loyalty makes us royalty on the web.
LMKS: Inspirational Consumers are people who take their Love of a brand very seriously indeed. Can you recall any encounters you’ve had where a customer gave you a new insight to the rational of both your business and your marketing?
AH: I have so many Freelancers that inspire me on a daily basis. I did get a letter from a fellow Freelancer once that truly did offer me a bigger picture and new focus for the website in the future. The letter was from a stay at home mom with no source of income, who was trapped in an abusive relationship. She happened to see me on television and visited Freelancebyu to learn about what I do. She earned money from her computer and was able to save enough to leave her situation and provide her children with a safe atmosphere on her own. She wrote me a letter thanking me for the courage, resources and ability to develop the self esteem to change her life.
This letter provided me with the insight that I needed to quit my profession as a Social Worker and focus on the website so that I could provide Social Work, in another, alternative way, pursuing all my passions at the same time. This life altering event for this Freelancer also altered my own life. That mutual Love/Respect Axis we talked about? Well this was a prime example.
LMKS: What are your top 5 Lovemarks?
AH: * Freelancebyu.com
FEB. 2, 2006
FREE or (at least) Darn Cheap
By John Walters
Frugality is central to New Hampshire’s image. Maybe it’s our steadfastly anti-tax politics, or our tendency to rank near the bottom in most measures of philanthropy. Or maybe it’s the stereotype of the flinty Granite Stater who throws nickels around like they were manhole covers. In this age of consumption, we set out in search of frugality in 21st-century New Hampshire. Along the way, we found people who are choosing to be frugal for a variety of reasons — personal choice, financial necessity, environmental concerns or just a desire for a simpler lifestyle.
Jim Merkel: Living Lightly on the Earth
“If a thousand people simplify, they’ll have a thousand different lifestyles — each unique and beautiful.”
It all began in 1989 in a Swedish bar. Jim Merkel was on a business trip for his employer, a California munitions company. At the time, he had begun to ponder the ethical and environmental impact of his business.
“It came to a head when I saw coverage of the Exxon Valdez oil spill on TV,” he recalls. “It really shook me up.” He believed that his energy-intensive lifestyle was as much to blame as the tanker’s captain or the oil industry.
Back home, Merkel spent a weekend calculating what he really needed to live. The answer was $5,000 a year. “I realized I was 30 years old and I’d already earned enough money to live the rest of my life on the interest. So I went in to work on Monday and gave my 30-day notice.”
He had 13 yard sales, getting rid of almost all his possessions — including an antique car, a speedboat and a motorcycle. He rented out part of his house, planted a vegetable garden and used a bicycle instead of a car. “My quality of life went way higher,” he says, “because I had all my time free to do anything I wanted — over 30,000 hours free.”
Merkel became an activist for sustainable living; he is co-founder of the Global Living Project and author of “Radical Simplicity: Small Footprints on a Finite Earth,” a guide to living a simpler life.
Last summer, the 49-year-old Merkel took his first regular job in 16 years: sustainability coordinator at Dartmouth College. His task: to bring Earth-friendly practices to campus. He says the administration is fully behind him, but “it’s hard to change, even when they want to.”
As an example, he cites a dining hall on campus: “The dining-hall guy says he has to break even or show a profit. He can make lots of money selling packaged foods. He is forced to turn his dining hall into a convenience store.” And that contributes to the waste stream; Merkel says Dartmouth’s output of trash has grown by 7 percent a year since 2001. He says nobody wants that, but “the question is, are we willing to step back and look at our systems?”
He advocates the same approach for individuals and families. “I don’t like to give specific advice on how to cut back. My book offers a process — a way to assess your own values, and make your own decisions.”
And he insists that simplicity is not sacrifice: “Life is richer when it’s sustainable. Eating fresh produce, having clean air and water, connecting with family, friends and nature — those things are priceless.” NH
Marijo Varney: Time for change
“I really wanted to home school my son. The school system wasn’t working for him.”
The Varneys had a hectic lifestyle. Marijo was a full-time teacher in Keene; her husband Jim worked two hours away in Boston. Their schedules were physically and emotionally taxing. Their daughter Kristin was having health problems. Their son Peter had been diagnosed dyslexic; his grades were good, but his teachers had suggested remedial classes.
They decided it was time to get off the treadmill. Marijo read every book on frugality and simple living she could find. She went to part-time status. Jim kept working in Boston for a year, while they paid their debts and built up their savings. Then he took a job closer to home, with a much lower salary.
Several years later, the change has resulted in a better life for the Varneys. Their health improved. Peter thrived in the home-school setting. “I never had to ask him twice about assignments,” says Varney.
She uses many of the same techniques as Rachel Thayer (see page 41), such as sewing, canning and cooking from scratch. She buys in bulk or on sale. She’s also found homespun substitutes for some items. “I make my own dry soup mixes, with dry noodles, bouillon, dried herbs, onion and garlic. I found the recipe in an out-of-print book called ‘Make Your Own Groceries.’”
She makes fruit leather with a dehydrator — which she got for free. “I bought five at a discount,” she says, “sold the other four on eBay and made more than enough money to pay for the one I kept.”
Fundamentally, she says it’s a different way of looking at life and money. “I am always asking, ‘Do we really need this, or do we just want this?’ “
After their children went off to college, life took another turn. “I had gone back to work, because I thought it would be nice to have the extra income,” she says. “Two months later, Jim lost his job when his company downsized. Frugality made it easy.”
These days, Jim is a part-time Web developer, and Marijo teaches special-needs students at Franklin Elementary School in Keene. Their income is much lower than it used to be, but “we save at least 25 percent of every paycheck,” says Varney. “We pay cash for large expenses, and we are building our retirement fund.” All that, while putting two kids through college.
“My daughter is 23 and she’s pretty frugal herself,” says Varney with pride. “Her fiancé used to wonder why she saved so much. Then he got sick and couldn’t work for six weeks. She had a freezer full of food, and they got through it. They’re getting married next year; they have enough savings to make a down payment on a house.” NH
Jack Lecza: Frugal colonist
“You can’t go back to the year 1628 and not be profoundly impacted.”
So says Jack Lecza, a 49-year-old businessman from Bedford. He was a cast member on “Colonial House,” the PBS TV series that put a group of modern Americans in a precise re-creation of an early colony. It was a very different time: “Nothing is wasted, nothing discarded,” he says. “When you return to the 21st century, that stays with you.” After the show’s taping in the fall of 2003, he was determined to simplify his life.
He left his job as an executive consultant. It was lucrative but “an absolutely insane life; there’s so much selling in it.” He is now a vice-president for Liska Biometry, a startup company in Dover. The pay is lower, but the demands are more predictable.
Even before “Colonial House,” Lecza was a pretty frugal guy. He credits the influence of his mother Adelaide, “the wisest, most enlightened person I have ever known.” He calls frugality a “learned competency” that must be gained over time.
How frugal is he? “I drive my kids crazy with reusing things,” he muses. “I’ve been known to cut up napkins and make coffee filters out of them.
“I love to paint, and I make my own paper,” he says. “I take old newspaper, soak it, pulp it, press it and let it dry. It turns gray, but it’s fine for everyday uses.”
He buys his clothing at resale shops and reads used books. “I used to live in Merrimack,” he recalls. “People would drop off old books at the dump. I went there first thing every Saturday and went through the book pile.”
It may sound a bit monastic, but he says frugality is not a sacrifice. It’s a matter of setting priorities and discovering where true happiness can be found.
Lecza and his wife Addie have two children, 14-year-old Amy and 11-year-old Cooper. Every Friday night the family gathers for homemade pizza and conversation. On one recent occasion, “Cooper had two friends over,” he says, “and we played 3-on-1 chess. I was struck by how simple and timeless, how little cost and how much enrichment.”
In today’s fast-paced society, he says, “Our cost/enrichment matrix is all screwed up. So often, it’s the simple things that make our lives better.”
Lecza offers some advice for those seeking to dial down: First, consider everyone who would be impacted by a change. Some can’t handle it. Second, take stock of your life and environment. What are you doing that you don’t need to do? What can you do without? And third, don’t give up. It takes time to adjust. There’s a certain discipline to it, and a real self-confidence, a comfort level with oneself. NH
Rachel Thayer: Frugal by nature — and necessity
“I have a hard time paying full price for anything. Looking around the house, I can’t see anything I paid full price for.”
Rachel Thayer calls herself “Miss Frugal New Hampshire.” She hasn’t lived here very long — she moved from North Carolina to Claremont in 2004 — but she’s become a treasure trove of knowledge for would-be savers in the state. At the age of 25, she’s mastered a lot of “old-fashioned” skills that make a dollar stretch farther, like canning, quilting and sewing.
She also founded a Claremont chapter of the Freecycle Network, a Web-based organization (www.freecycle.org) for people who want to give away unused items. Freecycle has nearly two million members in thousands of local chapters, including 28 in New Hampshire. It’s a valuable part of Thayer’s bargain-hunting strategy: “I just received two woodstoves, we’ve gotten a day bed, a love seat and a lot of kids’ clothing. I got my cat and dog on Freecycle.”
Thayer got an early start on frugality. “I was raised by a single mom living on a tight budget,” she says. Her mother, Anjie Hresan, is now a professional saver — she runs a frugal living Web site,
www.freelancebyu.com, and has appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” as an expert in frugality.
Her mother’s training has come in handy. Thayer’s husband Richard is a staff sergeant in the Marines and a military salary isn’t much for a family with two young children: 3-year-old Lockley, and 18-month-old Gavin. Even so, they manage to put at least $100 a month in savings. Here are some of her techniques:
On food — “I shop at discount stores, buy dented cans, look for coupons and free offers. I garden and can my own produce. I do a lot of cooking from scratch. We don’t eat out.”
On clothing — “I shop at resale and consignment stores. The outfit I’m wearing today cost about $4.25, and it’s good quality stuff — from the Gap, Levi’s, a pair of Birkenstocks. I look just fine. In fact, I look pretty cute today.”
On washday — “I make my own laundry detergent. A half bar of grated Fels Naptha Soap, a cup of Borax and a cup of washing soda. Shake it up, and use 2 tablespoons per wash load. I estimate I save about $400 a year on detergent.” She makes reusable “dryer sheets” by pouring liquid fabric softener on an old washcloth or mismatched sock.
Thayer is a real bundle of energy — always looking for ways to save a buck and share her ideas with others. One gets the sense that if she ever won the lottery, it wouldn’t change her lifestyle one bit; she’s having way too much fun. NH
Rachel Thayer’s Super Saving Tips
Join the newsletter (www.freelancebyu.com) for free and let my mom do all the legwork for you on finding the best deals on the net.
Join (www.freecycle.org) for free in your local area and find anything and everything you might need for free —nothing sold there, only free things.
Mr. G's discount store in Windsor Vt. I find all kinds of great deals there on food items.
Changes Thrift Store in Claremont, Hint — always look in the bargain basement.
Angelina's Closet in Claremont
Second Beginnings Thrift Store in Claremont
Salvation Army in West Lebanon
Listen Thrift Store in White River Junction, free bread for donation.
Listen Thrift Store in Lebanon
Rymes Oil & Propane has the cheapest oil around for people not able to afford to pre-buy.
Go to local schools of massage and cosmetology to get pampered — costs you less and gives the students experience.
If you are looking for a pet, go to www.petfinder.com or your local shelter to adopt. There are tons of great animals out there needing a great home! And look for pets that are already altered! I found my purebred German Shepherd (free), already fixed on Petfinder and my purebred, with papers, already-fixed flame-point Himalayan cat on freecycle.org (free). They are out there, just go find them.
Rachel Thayer is owner/moderator of the Claremont Freecycle Yahoo group.
FEBRUARY 17, 2006
Welcome to our FIRST Soaps Gone Buy
Affiliate Spotlight! Every month we will feature one of our very own
affiliates. We hope to inspire you with their
stories and inform you about their businesses. I hope you enjoy…
Our first featured affiliate is Saving
Specialist, Angela Henley from Powhatan, Virginia. Angela, equipped with her
knowledge to save money and her willingness to help people, created www.freelancebyu.com
. She wanted to offer the BEST FOR LESS to her visitors as a FREE SERVICE
to help others live more lavishly!!
Her path started out with a small e-mail
list of close friends and family to share special deals, coupons and rebate
offers. The list may have started out small, but as word spread, it soon
included hundreds Since
then, Angela has taken the phrase "saving a buck" to a new level.
In fact, in March of 2002 her cost-cutting techniques earned her a spot on NBC's
Today Show. During this segment, a video clip of Angela’s shopping
marathon was shown. Armed with coupons, rebate offers, and gift
certificates, she visited 10 stores and bought $333.36 worth of merchandise, all
for the low price of $16.27. Hard to believe?? CLICK
HERE to watch the clip. It is absolutely amazing!
Also, I would like to give
my most sincere congratulations to Angela. She was very recently nominated
as an Inspirational Owner on the website www.lovemarks.com
where she was interviewed to share her inspirational insights. This
article tells an amazing story of how Angela has inspired her ‘Freelancers’
and vice versa. Visit Anjie’s site at http://www.freelancebyu.com
and become a part of a great community!
Lesson 1: Shop
smart, save big
On Tuesday night, Faye Prosser stood in front of a class
of 20 people, holding a cash re gister receipt from Lowes Foods.
"My subtotal was $56.16," she said. "I paid 14
cents."There was a stunned silence, followed by some laughter, and then
one class member whispered, "Wow, she's good."There was no doubt
that Prosser was the right person to teach the seminar "Cut Your Grocery
Bills in Half." She has taught the class for four years at local schools,
churches and community centers, but it's growing in popularity as more folks
look for ways to stretch their budgets Prosser showed students how she took
the grocery bill for her own family of four from $135 a week to $50 a week.For
those who aren't mathematically inclined, that's an annual savings of $4,420
She does it by shopping strategically: Coupons are a big part of her organized
system, but she also said waiting for sales, understanding how grocery stores
operate and having patience are keys to success. "It takes
discipline," said Prosser, 37. "You can't make impulse buys, and you
have to plan. You have to wake your inner disciplinarian." The class at
Johnston Community College's Cleveland Campus was made up of men and women
with various levels of money-saving expertise. Many were like Melonie Trice, a
Willow Springs resident who is already careful with money. "I'm trying to
be a little more frugal than I've been," she said. "It's hard to
believe you can really save that much." And yet, Prosser says you
can."I find that usually people are able to see a 40- to 50-percent
reduction in the first one or two months. For some, it only takes a couple of
trips to the store to get the hang of it. For others, it may take a little
Faye's tips for frugal grocery shopping
* Shop more than one store each week; pick the best deals at each.
* Look for "loss leaders," items that stores mark down especially
low to get people in the doors.
* Don't get caught up in impulse buys.
"No wandering the aisles with your purse hanging open and money flying
out," she said. "Don't even go near the ready-to-eat rotisserie
* Eat before you go to the store.
* If possible, leave young children at home.
How do you know when a deal is really a good one?
Prosser recommends making a price book in which you record items you
frequently buy and the prices you pay for them.
This allows you to see if there's a cycle for sales on that item (i.e., it
goes on sale every two months). If there is, you buy enough when it's on sale to
last until the next sale.
It also allows you to calculate price per unit to see if a sale is really a
A 16-ounce container of Daisy sour cream may cost $1.39, making it 8.6 cents
per ounce. If you see an 8-ounce container on sale for 99 cents, that's 12.4
cents, making the 16-ounce container a much better deal.
On the Web
On frugal shopping
* About.com (www.couponing.about.com)
* The Dollar Stretcher (www.stretcher.com)
* Clark Howard: (www.clarkhoward.com)
* The Frugal Shopper: (www.thefrugalshopper.com)
* Coupons.com: (www.coupons.com)
* Upons: (www.upons.com)
* Smart Source: (www.smartsource.com)
* FreelanceBYU: (www.freelancebyu.com)
* Phoenix Freebies: (www.phoenixfreebies.com)
* Start Sampling: (www.startsampling.com)
How cheapskates do dinner
How cheapskates do dinner - MSN Money
A $26 ribeye tastes that much juicier at $13, at least to me.
So while some people shy away from dining-out discounts, fearing perhaps the
scorn of their teenage servers, others like me won't leave home without one.
"I try to go out only if I have a deal," says Tonya Ward, a
stay-at-home mother from Winston-Salem, N.C., who clips newspaper coupons, surfs
the Web for discounts and goes to kids-eat-free nights at local restaurants.
One night, Ward even dressed her whole family up as cows, with black and
white spotted t-shirts, to get a free meal at her local Chick-Fil-A restaurant.
"I am never one to pass up a free meal," Ward says. "And since
my son is 4, he appreciates (entertainment) like that."
But it doesn't take a costume to get discounts, provided you are willing to
plan ahead, be flexible and use coupons and gift certificates unabashedly. And
some of them are so discreet your date will never know you went cheap.
Discount blogger Anjie Henley, for instance, doesn't think twice about
combining coupons and gift certificates to get her meals for a fraction of the
"I try to never pay full price for anything, especially food," says
the operator of FreelanceByU.com.
"You can eat out for pennies on the dollar" if you know where to look
for discounts, she says.
Henley once bought a $50 T.G.I. Friday's gift card for $20 on eBay and then
used it at a restaurant with a $7 coupon she received by e-mail. That's $37 in
Discounts without coupons
Stiff competition in the restaurant business is prompting more restaurants --
even white-tablecloth eateries -- to offer deals to bring new customers in and
reward those who eat there often.
Take, for example, one of my favorite Indian restaurants in Pasadena, Calif.
With two competitors within a two-block radius, it is not only posting 2-for-1
coupons in local coupon books and Web sites, it's also joined a cash-back
program called Rewards Network, which gives its customers 20% back from their
Network's members pay a membership fee or are referred by their airline's
miles program in exchange for a rebate of 10% to 20% off each meal, including
food, beverages, tax and tip.
Customers register their credit cards. When they dine, they simply use that
credit card to get savings. The server and your date don't have to know you are
getting a discount. The rebate is refunded to the credit card a few days later,
and the diner is notified by e-mail.
The savings "add up pretty quickly," claims Chris Curtis, a
spokesman for Rewards Network.
However, prospective members should peruse Reward Network's site first to see
if several of the restaurants you like are affiliates. In some cities, such as
New York, it has 600 restaurant partners. In my area, Los Angeles, it has only
100 eateries and bars spread out across town.
For someone like me who dines out only occasionally and doesn't drop a ton of
money on a meal, the program is barely worth the $49 annual membership fee. But
if you join the program through an airline frequent-flier program, the
membership is free. The only hitch is, you get your money back in miles.
Of course, even these miles can be turned into free dinners, if you know how.....
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RALEIGH, N.C. -- Savvy shoppers check the store ads, make
their list and get ready for great day-after Thanksgiving deals during the day
known as Black Friday. But there's a way to avoid the crowds and still find
deals -- some even better than expected.
NBC17's Kim Genardo helps crack the code to save you money with Internet
The holiday rush is on. Mall traffic, crowded stores, and the sweet sound of
sales, but savvy shoppers can save even more money online if you've got the
The key to finding fantastic deals starts online with a simple search. Type
in your favorite retailer along with the words "coupon code." You'll
be amazed how many sites find special deals.
"For pretty much any store you want to shop at, you would enter the name
of the store -- Gap Eddie Bauer, L.L. Bean -- the name of the store, plus coupon
code and up will come a number of really good coupon codes, how much they are
worth and how long they are valid for," coupon expert Faye Prosser said.
Prosser explains how off the long list of deep discounts available online
By plugging in code words, like "holiday" or "new9724",
you can get free shipping or a percentage off your purchase. But don't stop at
only one deal.
"Preferably to find stackable deals, which means you have a percentage
off and free shipping, or dollars off and free shipping," Prosser said.
Remember, you won't crack the code on the retail sites -- you have to find
deal hunting sites.
Prosser particularly likes the sites Coupon Cabin, GoNicoFish and
"I always recommend looking at two or three of these sites, so you can
compare best coupon codes out there," Prosser said.
On FreelanceByU we found a great deal alert. Mary Engelbreit cookbook
closeouts, a $25 cookbook for a steal at only $5. And if the total purchases add
up to $35 dollars, we could plug in the code "world" for an additional
"There are some fantastic deals that the savvy shopper can find
online," Prosser said.
Here's another example that won't leave you hungry.
Restaurant.com offers gift certificates. You can purchase a $25 gift
certificate for half price. Already a great deal, but not good enough for
"The savvy shopper, the smart spender is going to take is a step further
and you are going to use a coupon code," Prosser said.
Prosser found the code for an additional 40 percent off.
"So my $25 gift certificate is now $7.20 cents, pretty phenomenal,"
So a few minutes on your home computer could save you big, you just have to
find the right code.
The codes change as often as the store flyers, so when you find a deal, seize