Free Fun Adventure – Week 9 – Weekend Away

14 03 2010

Last Wednesday my partner had to travel to Sydney for a conference for his work.  We lived in Sydney for about 6 years before moving to Brisbane in 2001, so still have some great friends and family who live in Sydney.  With my partner already in Sydney it seemed like a perfect opportunity for me to take a trip so we could spend the weekend catching up with family and friends.

First thing I did was check out the Frequent Flyer Point situation and bingo I had enough points for a return trip (FREE).

So now I need to find somewhere to stay that is either free or almost free! secondly a place to stay.  My partner is a member of Accor and each year they give members a free night’s accommodation Yay ……. nothing available anywhere near where we wanted to be …… booooooo.

So, let’s call some friends and see if we can “invite” ourselves.  Bingo (again), a friend of ours was going out of town for the weekend so we could stay at their place and use their car all weekend (FREE).

We had a fabulous time catching up with some very dear friends, in particular some friends who have a very sick little boy (6 months old), he had Downs Syndrome and some associated complications – but oh-my-gosh he is the most adorable little man you’ve ever seen – I wanted to bring him home!

Where could you go with your frequent Flyer Points, or Fly Buy Points or any reward scheme you are part of?  Could you do a house swap with a friend in another City for a weekend or perhaps a longer holiday?  What about house-sitting a friend’s home if they are going elsewhere?  Lots of creative options to get a very inexpensive holiday or just a weekend mini-break!

Adele – Green Apple Organising

www.secretbudget.net

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Free Fun Adventure – Week 8

14 03 2010

Ok, so with the continue rain here in Brisbane, we have had to investigate another in-door activity for our Fun Free Adventure this week. I guess you could say we did two things this weekend, first of all we had a movie pass, so we took ourselves off to see “The Men Who Stare at Goats”, I liked the film and it was even better because I didn’t know anything about it really, so it was full of surprises, overall I gave it a rating of 3 out of 5. If you are a George Clooney fan I think you’ll like it took, I like him better in this film than in “Up In The Air”. The second thing we did was scout around the house to see what items we could sell on eBay. I am a self-confessed eBay junkie, but for selling, not really for buying. We sell a lot of items for clients on eBay and the thrill of seeing people bid for items sure is fun – it’s even more fun when the items for sale are mine and the money comes straight to me. So we’ve listed a Mountain Bike, a Coffee machine, a gorgeous Cellini handbag and there might be some clothes go on their too later in the week. What could you sell on eBay to raise some money? Not only is it a great way of getting rid of excess clutter, but it so much fun watching the prices rise! Check out some tips at www.secretbudget.net

Adele – Green Apple Organising





Free Fun Week 7 – In House Movie Marathon

8 03 2010

A couple of weeks ago my other half celebrated his birthday and as a result received 3, yes 3 DVD’s, all his favourite releases of 2009, The Boat that Rocked, Grand Torino and Inglorious Basterds. As the weather was …. let’s say …. unpredictable this weekend in Brisbane, we decided to settle in for a movie marathon complete with home cooked popcorn. Even though we had both seen all these films before they were still great fun – if a bit scary at times! I especially love the music on The Boat that Rocks – absolutely brilliant! And of course it is never too difficult to watch Brad Pitt! Why don’t you plan a movie marathon, each member of the family pick their favourite film. What about inviting your friends over and ask them to bring their all-time-favourite flick and enjoy – who knows what your guests might bring! If any of you guys have suggestions for our Fun Free Adventures, be sure to send them in, we are game to try anything – well almost!

Have a great week.

Adele www.greenappleorganising.com.au





Free Fun Week 6 – Picnic

21 02 2010

So after being out of the house almost all of last weekend at the seminar, we decided to have a weekend adventure closer to home.  Like everyone the usual chores had to be done, and of course the lawn needed a good mow after the week’s rain.

We have been driving past the development of the Kangaroo Point Cliff Park since it commence a year or so ago, and now that it is finished we decided to take a picnic and check it out.  As luck would have it parking was a breeze on Sunday afternoon and the park itself was relatively empty.  There is loads of vantage points to view the city (will be great for New Years Eve and River Fire celebrations), and of course lots of lovely fresh lawn to relax on.  In addition there are several BBQ’s and it looks as though the cafe is almost ready to open complete with a liquor license!

We took a very basic picnic of sandwiches and drinks and found a shady spot to enjoy the surrounds and read.  As a side note; that would be one thing that I would point out,  shade at the moment is at a premium so until the trees become more established I would recommend visiting at early morning or late afternoon during the summer months.

Why don’t you find a local spot that you haven’t been to before, or not for a long time, pack a picnic, grab a book or games for the kids and get out in the fresh air and enjoy the many green spaces Brisbane has to offer, they are pretty much all free!

Have a wonderful week!

Adele Blair

www.greenappleorganising.com.au





Free Fun Week 3 – Games Night

1 02 2010

After last weeks road trip, I thought I might stay closer to home this week – it was a bit tricky planning ahead this week as the weather was either going to be boiling hot or a complete wash out – as it turned out it was a combination of both.

So what did we do this weekend?  We went “old school” and played a board game!  My mother had sent us a game of Rummy-O for Christmas and we hadn’t even taken the wrapping off!  The game is similar to the card game but you use tiles like dominos – it was loads of fun as we tried to decipher the rules and eventually made up some of our own.

We played for hours whilst watching the cricket!

So it’s a short and sweet one, but the bottom line is get together and play an interactive game with the other members of your family whether it’s on a Wii where you all get a turn or a good old game of cards.  Take time to connect with your family and playing games is both free and fun! Have a fabulous week! – Adele Blair





Untidy Handbags cost you money!

21 04 2009
Is your bag messy? Get organised and save money!

Is your bag messy? Get organised and save money!

How does an untidy handbag cost you money?  Here some examples…

* If you can’t find your mobile phone and you miss the call… you have to pay to retrieve the message and then pay again to return the phone call!

* Can’t find your lipgloss?

* Can’t find the tissues?

* Where is that pen?

* I need to write something down…

Be prepared, get organised and have useful items in your handbag so you are not impulsively purchasing new items because you can’t find them.

Here are my suggestions –

* Get a small pencil case and stock it with pens.  Keep the pencil case in your handbag.  WHY?  How many times have you been on the run and needed a pen and bought one?

* Find a small cosmetic bag (usually found in the bottom of my bathroom cupboard!) and put some lipgloss and your favourite lipstick in it.  Also pop in some lip balm.  WHY?  How many times have you lost your lippy in the bottomlessness of your handbag and bought a new one?

* Buy a handbag that doesn’t have black lining.  The lighter the lining inside, the easier it is to find stuff!

* Make sure your handbag has pockets on the outside for easy access to mobiles.  (deep pockets at the front of the handbag are safest)

Visit http://www.secretbudget.net to add your tips and ideas for saving money!

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Living Within Your Means: Do you know if you do?

30 03 2009

save-money-frustrated-woman-with-billsLiving within your means is more than just a zero sum game. If you successfully spend less money each month than you make, good for you—you’re actually ahead of about 75% of the population. But those who truly understand financial freedom know that it’s conscious (yet rewarding) work to stay on top of your finances. Reflect on the following questions to evaluate how well you live within your means.

1. I know exactly how much money is in my savings (and spending!) accounts. The first step to living within your means is understanding exactly what your means are. Be aware of your balances and cash flow. With online and automatic bill pay it is easy to lose track.

2. I have a monthly budget that I stick to religiously. Make sure you understand how much it costs you to simply exist. Outline your monthly bills, create a budget, and stick to it!

3. I follow the 24-hour rule. The 24-hour rule means that when you want to make a purchase that is not in your budget, you take 24 hours to determine your true need/want for the purchase. Waiting 24 hours ensures that you do not make impulse buys that you will later regret. For bigger purchases, such as cars, you may want to give yourself an entire week.

4. I set aside money every month. Those who truly live within their means understand the importance of rainy day funds. Aside from Superannuation Funds or 401Ks and other non-liquid assets, consider a good old-fashioned savings or money market accounts. The earned interest may be low, but they’re perfect for emergencies or even family vacations or other large purchases.

5. I recommend keeping low or zero balances on my credit cards and pay them off religiously. We live in a credit society. Having healthy credit is important and keeping low balances on your credit cards do not only increase your credit score, but also your sense of well-being.  If you can avoid them altogether – even better!

www.secretbudget.net