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Fall 2011 Low Income Support Thread - Page 7

post #121 of 192

Hi guys. Please don't mind me just jumping right in here. We definitely qualify as low income. We're a family of five surviving on DH's income and my student financial aid. Yikes! I am not looking forward to Christmas. :( Our county isn't covered for Toys for Tots, I am having a hard time finding info on Angel Tree, and the local schools don't have charity drives or anything like that. DH's check today was less than expected too so that isn't helping. We'll be okay on bills and stuff (for the most part, we're pro at juggling) but it leaves nothing left for holidays. Bah. Not to mention our food stamps went down despite our bills and rent increasing and DH"s income staying the same. Double bah!

 

I am doing desperate searches for anything in this county for holiday help for the kids, but I'm coming up with nothing.

 

Triple bah.

post #122 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

Hi guys. Please don't mind me just jumping right in here. We definitely qualify as low income. We're a family of five surviving on DH's income and my student financial aid. Yikes! I am not looking forward to Christmas. :( Our county isn't covered for Toys for Tots, I am having a hard time finding info on Angel Tree, and the local schools don't have charity drives or anything like that. DH's check today was less than expected too so that isn't helping. We'll be okay on bills and stuff (for the most part, we're pro at juggling) but it leaves nothing left for holidays. Bah. Not to mention our food stamps went down despite our bills and rent increasing and DH"s income staying the same. Double bah!

 

I am doing desperate searches for anything in this county for holiday help for the kids, but I'm coming up with nothing.

 

Triple bah.




My Xmas money is coming from: Swagbucks (internet searches that you get points and trade them in for stuff- I get amazon gift cards. I'd love to refer you to it if you don't already use it.. PM me if you're interested)... I try to save as much as possible throughout the year, but some stuff as come up that I've needed so I currently only have $25 in amazon money. I will hopefully have $30-40 by the time Xmas comes.

I have been putting in codes from Rice Krispies boxes for $5 "gas cards" (just a $5 visa card that can be used anywhere), and should have about $20 from that by Dec ($10 currently).

 

Depending on how old your little ones are, $1-store coloring books, crayons, etc, make good/cheap gifts.

 

We also do the 4 gifts (plus stockings): Something you want, something you need, something to play with, something to read. That keeps us from over-spending/buying.

 

post #123 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraBella View Post




My Xmas money is coming from: Swagbucks (internet searches that you get points and trade them in for stuff- I get amazon gift cards. I'd love to refer you to it if you don't already use it.. PM me if you're interested)... I try to save as much as possible throughout the year, but some stuff as come up that I've needed so I currently only have $25 in amazon money. I will hopefully have $30-40 by the time Xmas comes.

I have been putting in codes from Rice Krispies boxes for $5 "gas cards" (just a $5 visa card that can be used anywhere), and should have about $20 from that by Dec ($10 currently).

 

Depending on how old your little ones are, $1-store coloring books, crayons, etc, make good/cheap gifts.

 

We also do the 4 gifts (plus stockings): Something you want, something you need, something to play with, something to read. That keeps us from over-spending/buying.

 




ETA: We do have a community holiday gift program, but the paperwork requires the parents to have full custody of their children, which we don't (we have joint), so I can't apply for that either.

 

ALSO: sometimes I use my food stamps for treats that I give as gifts too (for stockings, parents, friends).

post #124 of 192

My girls are 15, 6, and 2. The youngest would be fine with dollar store items, and maybe the 6yr old. But my oldest, no. :( The things she's asked for (and knows she's not getting so she's currently pouting and not talking to me):

 

1. Stereo with big speakers

2. Money

3. Xbox360 with games

4. New bed

5. Roller blades (that look "hella dank")

6. Skateboard (customized)

7. Bongos

8. Treadmill

9. Camera/video camera, at least 12 megapixels

 

I already use Swagbucks but I haven't been having much luck lately. I've only gotten enough points in the past 2 months for one $5 gift card. And I already spent our other amazon gift cards on previous birthdays. 

 

I've emailed the contact person for the closest covered county for Toys for Tots. Hopefully I'm just overlooking something and there will be a way for us to put in a request. They have donation boxes at stores all over the place here. Surely they cover us for request too then... right?

post #125 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

My girls are 15, 6, and 2. The youngest would be fine with dollar store items, and maybe the 6yr old. But my oldest, no. :( The things she's asked for (and knows she's not getting so she's currently pouting and not talking to me):

 

1. Stereo with big speakers

2. Money

3. Xbox360 with games

4. New bed

5. Roller blades (that look "hella dank")

6. Skateboard (customized)

7. Bongos

8. Treadmill

9. Camera/video camera, at least 12 megapixels

 

I already use Swagbucks but I haven't been having much luck lately. I've only gotten enough points in the past 2 months for one $5 gift card. And I already spent our other amazon gift cards on previous birthdays. 

 

I've emailed the contact person for the closest covered county for Toys for Tots. Hopefully I'm just overlooking something and there will be a way for us to put in a request. They have donation boxes at stores all over the place here. Surely they cover us for request too then... right?


have you signed up for MDC's holiday helper program?   I'm not sure that you would receive any of those items, but it is a great program to help cover some gifts and clothing needs for kids.

 

post #126 of 192



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

 

I already use Swagbucks but I haven't been having much luck lately. I've only gotten enough points in the past 2 months for one $5 gift card. And I already spent our other amazon gift cards on previous birthdays.


What web broser do you use? We started using Chrome and stopped getting swagbucks. Then we went back to Internet Explorer  and are getting lots again. Weird!

 

post #127 of 192

I use Chrome. Stopped using Firefox a while back. Hmm... I wonder if that's the problem. I might just have to start using another browser for Swagbucks.

 

Got a response back from the Toys for Tots person. It's official, there is no program for my county. Though he's hoping maybe one will be started for next year. Gee. Thanks. That's helpful. *sigh*

 

It's okay. We will work things out. There's always a way. Even if it sucks trying to figure it out. Sometimes I just need a place to vent about it. :)

post #128 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by maciascl View Post



 


What web broser do you use? We started using Chrome and stopped getting swagbucks. Then we went back to Internet Explorer  and are getting lots again. Weird!

 



 



Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

I use Chrome. Stopped using Firefox a while back. Hmm... I wonder if that's the problem. I might just have to start using another browser for Swagbucks.

 

Got a response back from the Toys for Tots person. It's official, there is no program for my county. Though he's hoping maybe one will be started for next year. Gee. Thanks. That's helpful. *sigh*

 

It's okay. We will work things out. There's always a way. Even if it sucks trying to figure it out. Sometimes I just need a place to vent about it. :)



Same here - was using firefox and getting lots. Now using Chrome and barely getting anything - I'll swap back to firefox and see if it gets more. On the bed - maybe Catholic Charities or St. Vincent De Paul has a bed they might give you? Ours gives furniture out and even delivers it free if you don't have a car. Another option is to join thredup and see if you can swap enough to earn credits and maybe get something off her list used. 

post #129 of 192

lol.gif I wish that would work for her. She's extremely particular and has a specific type of bed in mind that she wants. Period. Nevermind that her current bed is less than a year old and is exactly what she asked for then. 

 

This is one example of what she has said she'd be happy with.

http://www.afwonline.com/furniture/bedroom/beds/conventional-beds/perimeter-place-queen-bed-i866-qbed

 

Yeah, that is SO not happening. lol.gif If I had that much money to spend on a bed I'd get it for me so I wouldn't be sleeping on just an old mattress on the floor without even a box spring. lol.gif

 

What's thredup? I don't think I've heard of that before.

post #130 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

lol.gif I wish that would work for her. She's extremely particular and has a specific type of bed in mind that she wants. Period. Nevermind that her current bed is less than a year old and is exactly what she asked for then. 

 

This is one example of what she has said she'd be happy with.

http://www.afwonline.com/furniture/bedroom/beds/conventional-beds/perimeter-place-queen-bed-i866-qbed

 

Yeah, that is SO not happening. lol.gif If I had that much money to spend on a bed I'd get it for me so I wouldn't be sleeping on just an old mattress on the floor without even a box spring. lol.gif

 

What's thredup? I don't think I've heard of that before.



Gotcha - totally understand. 

 

Thredup.com is a clothing trading site - you fill a priority mail box with good condition {no stains, tears etc} kids clothing, and post the box. It gets picked by someone else, you print the postage paid label and USPS picks it up from your home. If you post boxes in the in need sizes, you get a credit per box of $4 or $2 when it is selected and then reviewed. I've been shipping things out to earn credits, then cashing in the credits for a single box of what we need. They also have books, toys, kids / teen / adult clothing, shoes, household stuff and more on there. 

post #131 of 192

Ooo, Thredup sounds really cool. I will have to check that out. :)

post #132 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

My girls are 15, 6, and 2. The youngest would be fine with dollar store items, and maybe the 6yr old. But my oldest, no. :( The things she's asked for (and knows she's not getting so she's currently pouting and not talking to me):

 

1. Stereo with big speakers

2. Money

3. Xbox360 with games

4. New bed

5. Roller blades (that look "hella dank")

6. Skateboard (customized)

7. Bongos

8. Treadmill

9. Camera/video camera, at least 12 megapixels

 

I already use Swagbucks but I haven't been having much luck lately. I've only gotten enough points in the past 2 months for one $5 gift card. And I already spent our other amazon gift cards on previous birthdays. 

 

I've emailed the contact person for the closest covered county for Toys for Tots. Hopefully I'm just overlooking something and there will be a way for us to put in a request. They have donation boxes at stores all over the place here. Surely they cover us for request too then... right?



I use Swagbucks... I've adopted a lazy-mama's way to use it: every day I do the poll, then I do the search (random searches until I get some 'bucks), then I check the messages for easy, no-purchase stuff, then I sometimes do the surveys. But my big thing is that I keep the Swagbucks TV open in a tab (at work, too!) put the videos on mute and play them all day. I usually get about 30 SB each day doing this...

post #133 of 192
Thread Starter 


hola.gif
 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

Hi guys. Please don't mind me just jumping right in here.

 

post #134 of 192

I will first ask for things I want/need on Freecycle. If I come up dry I'll check thrift stores for things. My kids aren't spoiled brats (not saying yours are! Just, your 15 yr old is sounding like one atm, and they all can at moments) so they know that their things won't be new, and they agree it's even better when it's cheaper. They like to both get gifts AND eat, rather than having to choose, lol.  If I get something pretty good at a thrift store but it needs some work I can do it, or pay someone less than it would cost to buy the thing new. I also keep my eye out at yard sales year round, flea market-type sales, mom-to-mom sales, etc. I found a vanity marked $7 on half off day, so cost me $3.50, at the Volunteers of America store! Had a loose leg and some scratches. I tightened it up and touched up the scratches. DD1 now has a great gift. Got some roller skates for ds last year and took them to a repair place for new wheels. Looked brand new.

 

For better/higher priced things, do you have any skills you could barter? There's a barter section on CL, for instance. I can build a website, or sew. Dh was a professional painter before the economy tanked, so he'll barter painting for all kinds of things, like half a cow (beef) or various other things. Even the kids are in 4H and raise rabbits (in 2 hutches on the back patio of our townhome. Very easy animal to raise in a tight space). They sell or trade pedigreed bunnies for money for gifts or things they want/"need". At $20-30/bunny, 6 in a litter, able to rebreed as often as once a month (we only breed a rabbit once to twice per year) they do all right!

 

Takes some degree of ability to ignore rejection, but you can just cold email people selling things on CL, too, asking them to barter for something. Maybe you have an older PS with 100 games and they'd take that in exchange for an Xbox 360. I bought a new computer this year (w/student loans, for school) and it came with an Xbox. They're kind of a dime a dozen right now, so you may be able to put up a "wanted, let me know what I can do for you in return" ad in the electronics section of CL (well, maybe not those words, since that sounds kind of whorey, lol). And don't forget pawn shops. They've got really nice things at 75-50% of the cost of new.

post #135 of 192

We have no skills to barter. We've considered it in the past. But I'm not crafty, I can't build websites, I suck at cleaning, I'm not cut out for baby sitting, our car is crappy so can't run errands or deliver things, and we've already sold everything worth anything at all to get by in the past. So yeah, that won't work.

 

I know we'll get through Christmas, I'm just not looking forward to it. I really just wanted to vent.

post #136 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

We have no skills to barter. We've considered it in the past. But I'm not crafty, I can't build websites, I suck at cleaning, I'm not cut out for baby sitting, our car is crappy so can't run errands or deliver things, and we've already sold everything worth anything at all to get by in the past. So yeah, that won't work.

 

I know we'll get through Christmas, I'm just not looking forward to it. I really just wanted to vent.



I hear you.  Kids just want what they want--what they see in life and what their friends have.  Not that all of their friends have all of those things, but a kid can dream, right?

And as parents, we want to give them everything, even if that isn't always the best thing for them.

I hope you can find a small something to make christmas worth looking forward to!  Maybe sign your kids up to volunteer in a soup kitchen, or something like that to put in all in perspective? 

post #137 of 192

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

We have no skills to barter. We've considered it in the past. But I'm not crafty, I can't build websites, I suck at cleaning, I'm not cut out for baby sitting, our car is crappy so can't run errands or deliver things, and we've already sold everything worth anything at all to get by in the past. So yeah, that won't work.

 

I know we'll get through Christmas, I'm just not looking forward to it. I really just wanted to vent.


hug2.gif Huge hugs to you! I feel the same way. My kids are still little so I don't have the list of wants you were given, but I could have written all the same stuff about bartering and well, I am not really looking forward to christmas either.
 

 

post #138 of 192


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by amydidit View Post

My girls are 15, 6, and 2. The youngest would be fine with dollar store items, and maybe the 6yr old. But my oldest, no. :( The things she's asked for (and knows she's not getting so she's currently pouting and not talking to me):

 

1. Stereo with big speakers

2. Money

3. Xbox360 with games

4. New bed

5. Roller blades (that look "hella dank")

6. Skateboard (customized)

7. Bongos

8. Treadmill

9. Camera/video camera, at least 12 megapixels

 

I already use Swagbucks but I haven't been having much luck lately. I've only gotten enough points in the past 2 months for one $5 gift card. And I already spent our other amazon gift cards on previous birthdays. 

 

I've emailed the contact person for the closest covered county for Toys for Tots. Hopefully I'm just overlooking something and there will be a way for us to put in a request. They have donation boxes at stores all over the place here. Surely they cover us for request too then... right?

 

What games does she want?  Amazon frequently has really really good deals on video games, and there are some that one can get used for not all that much, too.  As for the platform, maybe you could provide a gift card with some money *towards the purchase* of it, encouraging her to save up her own earnings but showing that while you can't afford it yourself, you are making an effort to get her something she really wants.   As for the bongos, if she's not already a hand drummer who really knows her stuff (aka a teen who thinks these would be cool but otherwise hasn't given them a lot of thought), you can pick up a cheap set for $20.  If she's serious, that won't fly. 
 

 

post #139 of 192
I have removed numerous posts from this thread. I have asked many of you in the past to not bring private issues into public threads. Take it to PM!
post #140 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by rutabega View Post


 

 

What games does she want?  Amazon frequently has really really good deals on video games, and there are some that one can get used for not all that much, too.  As for the platform, maybe you could provide a gift card with some money *towards the purchase* of it, encouraging her to save up her own earnings but showing that while you can't afford it yourself, you are making an effort to get her something she really wants.   As for the bongos, if she's not already a hand drummer who really knows her stuff (aka a teen who thinks these would be cool but otherwise hasn't given them a lot of thought), you can pick up a cheap set for $20.  If she's serious, that won't fly. 
 

 


She doesn't know what games she wants. Well, she wants Zelda games, but other than that she's not sure. Not sure how much we could give in a gift card toward the platform but that's a thought. She'd probably spend it on something else though and then complain that she never got her game system. Ugh. Teenagers! As for the bongos, she's just a teenager who thinks they'd be cool. Where can they be found cheaply? I'll have to look around. :) Thanks!

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenOfTheMeadow View Post

I have removed numerous posts from this thread. I have asked many of you in the past to not bring private issues into public threads. Take it to PM!


Thank you.

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