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Welcome!  Thank you so much for visiting The Spirit of Saving.   I have included a simple, easy-to-follow approach to help you get started to saving money!  To find out more about me and what this blog is about, go here.

1.  Start small.  Usually the hardest part is just getting started.  Well, congratulations, you have taken the first step and have come to the right place!  Whether you have 5 minutes or 5 hours a day, I will help you learn how to use the time to save.

2.  Get a second email address separate from your personal one.  Use that email for all online purchases, sign-ups for daily emails, newsletters, etc.  There are many free email providers out there (hotmail, yahoo, gmail, etc.)

3.  Sign up for Swagbucks!  It is one of the easiest and quickest ways to earn cash back with little extra effort on your part.  You earn Swagbucks for searching online and then exchange them for a lot of great prizes – my favorites are Amazon giftcards!  Read more here for further details about Swagbucks or click on the Swagbucks tag to the right for the most recent posts about Swagbucks.

4.  Coupons - Organizing and using coupons can seem overwhelming and not worth the effort.  I have created a system that I find to be fast, efficient and easy to use.

5.  Begin to build a stockpile - When you find a great deal on an item (especially one that will not expire), it is helpful to purchase several items at the low price and so you have it handy instead of running out to the store and paying full price!

6.  Check out the Helpful Tools page for several programs I recommend to earn cash, great coupons, and exciting prizes with litte time involved.  This includes cash-back sites for shopping online, Recyclebank, Pampers Gifts-to-Grow, and Huggies Rewards.

Lastly, remember you are in control.  You can only do what you can do.  It is so easy to compare yourself to the people on extreme couponing - but they spend A LOT of time preparing and planning their trips to get the results you see.  I spend about 1-2 hours per week planning and preparing for my shopping trips and getting the best deals online, and although I don’t save 95% off my bill, I have cut our spending significantly since following these steps I provide on this site.  Decide for yourself what works for you and your family, and go with it!

CC image courtesy of o5com