New to Entering Blog Giveaways?? Here's some advice.

I have listed the answers to the questions that I have been asked often, from my own sweet friends who are new to blog giveaways.

We were All new at one time  :-)

The 1st few things you want to do BEFORE you click on that first blog giveaway is ... Log in to your facebook account, your twitter account, your google + account and your pinterest account. If you do not already have an account for all of those sites, now is the time to start one. There will be many potential entries just for having accounts at all those sites and being able to add, "Like", tweet, follow, etc .. is very important.

To "Log In" does not mean you have to leave all those windows open. Make sure to click the "Remember Me" right below your log in information, so the cookies from those accounts will stay on your computer and you can go back to those sites whenever needed, without keeping too many windows open.

Another new kid on the block is Bloglovin. If you don't have an account with them yet, Get one. It's easy to sign up, just use your facebook account or your email account. *When asked on a blog giveaway to provide your bloglovin user name.. you should put down either your FB name or email address that you used to sign up with on bloglovin.*

**If you need an invite to Pinterest or help setting up an account on any of the sites above, just send me an email, I will be happy to help you :-) **

Most blog giveaways use an app for giveaways, one of the most popular apps is "Rafflecopter". Click the "Log in with Facebook", as this will make it easier for you to get a lot of bonus entries.

- If the giveaway has an entry that says "Share this to your facebook and leave your link here." Scroll to the top or the bottom of the giveaway post and look for the share buttons. Find the solid blue "F" (I say this because some blogs have a facebook "like" button as well as the solid blue share button, for a new user this can be confusing.). Once you click that button, a post for FB pops up. Make sure it says "share with public" and has the world icon (see pic below), instead of the people icon that just shares with your friends. Once you have shared the post on your FB wall, Open another window and go to your FB profile page, find that new post you just shared from the giveaway and find the time stamp.

See where I have underlined in red? That's your time stamp. You will need to hover your mouse over it, the date and time will appear in a small box, right click on it. You will see a drop down menu... like this

Then left click on the "Copy link address", Go back to the giveaway page and hold down your "Ctrl" button on your keyboard and while its down click "v" . This will paste your link into the box. Viola!!

- Optional (sometimes Daily entry) Tweet. When you get to the Entry that asks you to "Tweet", Click the button they provide to post the tweet that they have already set up. Then go to your twitter account, I always click where it says the number of tweets I have made... Look for the tweet you just made, here's mine

Hover your mouse over the time stamp (mine is 46s) and you should see the time and date of the post, click or double click on that. (sometimes I have to double click for it to open to a new screen). Then it should look like this ..

Notice the area highlighted in yellow. You will need to copy (ctrl + c) and paste (ctrl + v) the link into the blog giveaway where it says "Link to tweet" or whatever wording the blogger puts there :-) They ALL want to see where you actually tweeted. Here's an example.

Then click the Green button to collect your entry. The more you do this, the easier it gets.

- When asked for your Pinterest name, Go to your Pinterest account and copy (ctrl+c) your url. Here's mine.

Then paste (ctrl+v) into the box for your blog entry. You could put down your name, but how many other people in this world have your name? I know I am NOT the only Renea Greathouse in the USA. Even though there are not a lot of us, putting in my url is a fire proof way of saying "this is me!!" But yeah, Sometimes I will put both, if it doesn't say "pinterest url" I'll put my name AND my url, because I don't want to be confused with anyone else who shares my name.

-- Just remember, All of the blog giveaway entries can be checked, so don't take an entry if you didn't do the task to earn it. If they find out that you did take an entry but find no proof that you did the task, it's an automatic disqualification.

If you have any questions or advice that I haven't discussed here, please leave me a comment. It could really help a new user in need.

Here's some useful facts that I found out the hard way.
- Facebook only allows you to "Like" 5,000 pages.
- Twitter only allows you to "Follow" 2,000 people/pages

When you read those facts do they make you laugh and think "I'll never get that many!!!"

I've hit my limit on Twitter several times, I often switch accounts so I can wait a month or two before deleting everyone I followed on that account, without losing entries to contests or giveaways.

I hit my limit on facebook 5 months ago and struggled for a month to unlike pages without disqualifying myself from any sweeps I had entered. Of course it took me a little over a year and a half to hit that limit, but when you enter as many contests, sweepstakes and giveaways that I do, it's easy to rack up some liked pages.
I recently had to make a new account on FB, since facebook wouldn't let me "like" any new pages. I found this to be highly unfair and even though I've had my old account since 2009, My passion needed to be satisfied.

I figure I will wait until 2014 before I start Un-liking the 5,000 pages on my old account. It takes a lot of time to un-like that many pages and between taking care of my family (which includes my elderly mom, 4 nieces and 1 nephew, 4 step kids and an awesome hubby) and the hundreds of other things that I have to do, un-liking pages is low on my list.

Hopefully my advice will help a new user to entering blog giveaways. I absolutely LOVE reading reviews and entering. I find a lot of useful things on blogs, not just giveaways. I am a complete coupon-ista and I'm so frugal I can make a penny beg for mercy, so finding coupons and shopping deals are high on my list too. Not only do we have to buy Christmas presents for our 9 children , but we also try and be secret santa for at least 3 more children every year (and last year we were able to be secret santa to 5!! Because I had won some gift cards and we were able to use them to purchase more toys.)

I must stop this post.
I'm a rambler.


My Latest Wins & Update from Last 2 Wins

Good things come in 2's for me.

My 1st win was from a contest on Facebook. I received a coupon in the mail last week for a free box (8) Blue Bunny Ice Cream Sandwiches. We used the coupon the same day and bought the Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwiches. My opinion - Oh Em Geeee!! They were so good. Twice as big as other name brand ice cream sandwiches, sooo creamy and they tasted just like a birthday cake!! My family gave them 2 thumbs up, way up.

My 2nd win was from a Blog giveaway that I received yesterday. I won a 2 month trial membership to IndieFlix!!! Independent movies we can watch on our Roku (that I got from another win, last year). I was so stoked to enter this contest on the Mom Saves Money Blog, a 2 month free trial gives us the chance to see if this would be something that we would enjoy, before committing to a monthly or annual membership. I viewed a few trailers on the site before I entered the contest, I like to make sure that this was something that me and my family would enjoy. IndieFlix has literally thousands of movies, some are short movies (18 mins and less) others are long (Go as high as 200 mins or 3 hours 20 mins).
Do me a favor and go visit Mom Saves Money. She's got some sweet printable Q's on there (scroll down to June 20th)!! It's definitely a blog to bookmark.

I am so happy with both of these wins. YAY!! Both are things we have used and can use again and again.

Update from my last 2 wins

- I received the 5 free product coupons from Gorton's seafood (and all the other goodies). We used 2 of the coupons and bought a package of beer battered fish fillets and a box of popcorn shrimp. The same day we bought our seafood, we lost power for 12 hours after a really bad thunderstorm. When the power came back on around 5 am est, I started cooking both the fish and shrimp, since both were cold but completely thawed out. We had a seafood dinner for breakfast, complete with green beans and mashed potatoes (both of which also came from the freezer because they had thawed out, it was sooo hot that night!) I didn't get ANY complaints, the family was happy to be eating such yummy food!!

- I received the young scientist kit this past Wednesday. Clifford the Big Red Dog Kitchen Kit. It comes with a lot of activities including an exploding volcano!! I have plans for this kit, when the summer heat gets to be too much and we NEED to stay inside, is when I will pull out this box full of activities. My 2 littles are both 6 years old and they love things that are messy or things that have the potential to be messy. (and play doh, they love play doh even though I make the home made version of it. lol.) I see some fun times in the near future!!

Hope you all stay cool and have a great weekend!
I've got some contests to enter and share here on my blog.
Peace, love and chicken grease :)


Old Twitter Acct Hijacked by a JackRabbit

Like the title says, my old twitter account got hijacked, this morning. I was checking my email account that's associated with that twitter account, yes... it's the same email account that has been over run with junk mail, and I noticed where someone had replied to a tweet. I couldn't wait to see who had replied to a tweet since I had not tweeted since 2012. Lo and behold, It was some drivel, junky, crap with a suspicious link. My blood pressure went through the roof!!

I quickly signed into my old account and changed my password. Then I clicked on my tweets!! It started 7 hours ago and only approximately 40 tweets had been made. It could have been a lot worse if I wasn't so diligent about checking my emails. I have a little over 300 followers on that account, so not all of them got the stinky message, I feel bad for the 40 who did get it.

My nickname for people who do shady acts like hijacking my twitter account is "JackRabbit". It started when I realized that my potty mouth language was being picked up by little ears and repeated, when my (then) 2 year old niece called her sister a "axxhole" at church (of all places!!). Now, when my 6 yr old niece gets mad she will scream "You lousy JACKRABBIT!!!" and my embarrassment is considerably less knowing I have stunted her potential vulgar mouth.


Getting this blog up to speed

I know it looks like I haven't been on or doing anything, but that's not entirely true.
I noticed a few days ago that the "next page" link was missing.

I had to find it!!

Now I know why people give up easily on blogger and just buy their own domains and do wordpress blogs. lol. I've been busy reading hundreds of articles and have had to refresh my .css mind (if you don't use it in 4 years, you lose it, kinda deal).

Posting a lot of anything is not a good idea, IF you don't have a "next page" link on your main page. So I'm hoping to have everything kosher by Sunday night, after all... this is not my only blog. I have a local blog for a local yahoo group I'm in and that blog needs a "next page" link as well. I'm killing two birds with one stone.

However, I will be posting a few contests during all this. I know a few people have asked me why I suddenly stopped posting. After explaining about the missing link four times, I decided to blog about my little trials and tribulations with the set up on blogger. It's not fun or cool. Blogger would be so much better if they provided this service, but no use in whining about it. :-)

UPDATE - 7:15pm EST

I FINALLY fixed my problem!!!!!!!!!
I'd like to take this opportunity to Thank Jesus, who answered my prayers after listening to me pray, whine and gripe. This blog is a labor of love, no doubt.


Mondays. Blah.

I am not a "Monday" person. Sundays are always so busy for me, I need Mondays off just to recharge. But do I actually get Mondays off? Not exactly. I still have to clean, cook and do a million other things that I do every day of the week, It's just that now I'm grumpy while doing those things.

I did manage to take a nap today, so that helped some.

Now I'm going to post a few sweeps that I think are awesome and then go collapse into bed and sleep like a rock.


Hope your Monday was better than mine :)


My 2 Latest Wins!!!

I know it's bad to count your chickens before they hatch but I'm so excited about my latest wins, I just have to brag.

Both of my latest wins were from blog contests (which I love love love to do).

The 1st win was from a 24 hour flash contest hosted by Frugal Family Tree. I saw it posted on my FB wall and clicked it within seconds of it being posted. I won 5 product coupons from Gorton's Seafood (We Love Gorton's Fish!! YAY!!), A branded spatula (can never have enough of those for some reason), Oven mitts and an apron. Awesome, Those are all things we can use.

That Contest started on May 16th and ended on May 17th, so I have not received my goodies yet, but I will be so happy when I do :) .

I love The Frugal Family Tree reviews and giveaways, so when you get a chance hop on over there and have a look around.


My 2nd win came from the Summer Splash Event/Giveaway Hop. The blog host I won from is Close to Home!!! We are super excited about this win. I got to choose from one of three young scientist kits, I chose the Kitchen Kit (It comes with a volcano!!) and we also got 3 Mira stainless steel containers, That's a win for me since I never have enough containers (where do they go??? They disappear like socks in the dryer). I'm excited about this win, not just for myself, but for my little ones who will be going into 1st grade this next school year. They love anything that has to do with science, nature or play doh. Fun times.

This Giveaway event started on May 14th and ended on May 27th. I have literally just received notice that I won, sent in my choice of young scientist kits along with my shipping info. It will be a nice summer surprise since my little ones like the mail truck almost as much as I do.

The blog Close to Home has some awesome DIY crafts and foodie recipes, 2 of my other favorite things to do in life. She recently posted a Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp recipe that I am dying to try. It sounds divine. Yummm. Don't Pass up looking around at this blog!!

Yes, I am happy with my wins. It feels so good to know that my efforts were not wasted. I try not to enter a contest/giveaway for something I cannot use. I have seen some contests where they want you to enter another contest for an entry on the one you are currently entering, and it will be something that I won't ever use (or know what to do with it). I'll pass on it.

The reason behind this is because I have won items that I had no use for. I won a roping chute last year. It was a $3,000 piece of equipment for a farm where they practice for rodeo's. Funny, huh? It presented me with a lot of problems and headaches. I ended up selling it for a fraction of what it was worth, just to get rid of it. Never again!! I learned my lesson. If I can't use it, my family can't use it, or a friend doesn't need it as a gift ... I'm not wasting my time by entering to win it.

But that's just me :)


Total Re-Vamp

I'm giving my blog a total re-vamp.
I've sent a lot of my posts to archives and have deleted tons of pages.
I still love the template, so I'm keeping it for now. It shows my Diva side so well.

So stay tuned :)

I have a ton of New Sweeps & Contests to post.

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