Easter Recipes and Free Printable Menu Plan!


I am soooooooo.








excited about this! :)


Download my complete Easter Menu Plan and grocery list (with coupon matchups!) This is the same one I use each year, so it’ll make my life a wee bit easier too!


We based the menu based on the current Target sales ad (although you can  use the grocery list at whichever store you choose), and even included coupon matchups that work with the sale.



The price came out to $6.91 per person to feed 8 (which I know sounds high, but that includes a ton of leftovers + extra pantry staples as well!) And, when you consider the cost of dinner out on Easter for a group of 8, this will be way less expensive. (In fact, a Honey Baked Ham alone normally runs $50-$60, and you’ll have your entire meal for less than that!)


Here’s what’s included on the Easter recipes menu at our house:


Apple Spinach Salad with Warm Vanilla Bean Dressing

One Dish Corn Casserole

Broccoli Cheese Casserole


Slow Cooker Ham

Gourmet Potatoes (I can’t believe I’ve never taken a picture of these, but they are the best potatoes you will ever eat. I’ll update with a picture when we make them this week!)

Sister Schubert Rolls (you can make rolls from scratch, but these just make life a wee bit simpler!)

Paula Deen’s Banana Pudding

Included in the free printable is our menu plan, a shopping list, and my schedule for cooking to make getting ready for Easter Brunch a breeze in your home. We’ve done all the work for you, so you can just shop, bake, and enjoy your family this weekend!


Go HERE to get your free Easter Menu Plan. AND, you can also get a link to my free “what you can freeze” printable when you sign up for free daily penny pinching emails!


I hope this makes planning for Easter go more smoothly in your home, and am praying a wonderful week for your family.  I’d love to hear what other recipes are favorites in your home as well ~ leave a comment to share!


Note ~ if you’re already an email subscriber you should receive a direct link to the free printable. Enjoy!

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Spice Cabinet Makeover



I bought the most fun organizing toy ever this weekend, and couldn’t wait to share it with you! 


We have a slew of family coming in for Easter this weekend, and the disaster in my spice cabinet has been long overdue for some attention.

So, after hearing a friend mention how much she loved this, I decided I had to try it out.

It’s genius. 


It even comes with pre-printed labels, so you can feel oh-so-organized!

And I loved that most of the spices I use from Aldi, Kroger, and Walmart all fit right inside the organizer.



I haven’t seen it ever drop in price below $39.99 (if you find one for less I’d love to hear about it), but part of the problem with organizing at my house is that I’m so frugal sometimes I hate splurging on things that seem so frivolous.


But, if I lose everything in my spice cabinet and don’t even know what’s there (so buy extra stuff bc it all gets lost in the back shelf . . . ), I’m definitely not pinching any pennies.

So, a little on the frivolous side, but goodness I love it already (and will let you know if I’m able to keep things that tidy for a few days!)


Have you found any other ways to clean out your cabinets that have worked for you? I’d love to hear them ~ leave a comment to share!

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5 Ways To Save At The Movies + Win Free Movie Tickets!

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This post was sponsored by AMC Theatres and Coca-Cola. The opinions are completely my own and based on my experiences. 


Do you love heading to the movies? Our family does too, but with a family of five a night out at the movies can get expensive, so we’re always looking for ways to save when we go.

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AMC theaters has a few fun offers going on right now though that definitely help you save, and after watching a movie at our local AMC this weekend I was hooked.


(Folks, have you gone to an AMC theater recently with fancy plush recliners? Oh my word, this AMC theater was the cushiest thing I’ve hung out at in ages!) :) 


The AMC theater that we went to was f-a-n-c-y, and such a nice diversion from our family’s crazy work-school-weeks. It was a well-earned splurge for our bunch, and we took advantage of AMC’s special teen deal going on right now which definitely helped pinch a few extra pennies.

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So, looking for a few ways to save when you head to AMC too? Here you go:

1. Take advantage of AMC’s special Teen Deal.

If you have a teenager with a student ID, take advantage of AMC’s special teen deal where your student can get a popcorn AND coke for just $5 ~ the cost of just a coke regularly!


With two teenagers in our house this is a huge discount, and means my kids don’t have to share their popcorn and drinks. We went this weekend and the coupon was super simple to use, just download it here then use on your phone. Love that!



2.  Watch a matinee.

This one’s easy, and works great for our family. Skip the late night movies and head in the afternoon, and you’ll save up to $1.50 per person. For our family of 5 that’s $7.50 ~ totally worth it to get there early!

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3. Go on a weekday.

If you can, head to an AMC movie that starts before noon during the week (AMC often has 11:45 AM showings), and save a bundle. Save up to half off evening-priced tickets, which means as much as $5 per adult (and is great to take advantage of during Spring Break and summer vacation!)

4. Follow AMC on Facebook.

Occasionally AMC gives special offers to their Facebook fan pages, including bonus movies, special freebies, and more. Go HERE to see what they’re offering today.

5. Try out AMC Stubs.

If you go to the movies often, consider getting an AMC Stubs card which gives you free upgrades on popcorn and soda, a $10 reward for ever $100 you spend in concessions, and no online ticketing fees. The cost is $12 for one year, but occasionally AMC runs it for a discounted rate ~ definitely watch for that if you’re favorite thing to do on the weekend is head to the theater!



Take advantage of AMC Sensory Friendly Films.

Okay, this isn’t a deal, but I love that AMC offers this and thought you would do. If you have a family member with autism or other special needs, head to AMC during their Sensory Friendly Film showings and enjoy family friendly movies with the lights up and the sound turned down a bit. Love that!

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How would you like to win a few FREE AMC theater tickets? Five lucky PPP readers will win 2 free tickets for an AMC theater in their area ~ WOOHOOO!


Here’s how to enter to win:

I’ll announce the winners Monday night at 9PM Eastern Time, so hurry and enter to win! If you have any other tips on saving at the movies, I’d love to hear those too.



This prize was provided by AMC Theatres. AMC Theatres and The Coca-Cola Company are not a sponsor or administrator or connected in any other way with this giveaway.”

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Panera: Free Coffee, Tea or Soda For One Month!

If you love Panera (like I do!) hurry over and sign up to become a registered  My Panera Member, and you’ll get free coffee, tea or soda for an entire month! And, just for joining you’ll earn special freebies every time you’re there ~ just yesterday my hubby and I met for lunch and sure enough had earned a free pick 2 entree (regularly $8+).


Go HERE to get started ~ I love this freebie! :)

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7 Items You Should Always Look for at the Dollar Tree {Before Paying Full Price}

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I soooo love a trip to the Dollar Tree when it comes to gathering supplies for DIY projects and crafts ~ it’s amazing all they have to offer!  You can find some really cute stuff there, as well as crafting basics to have on hand when the Pinterest bug bites. :)

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A DIY project shouldn’t cost you more than buying the real deal at a home decor store, and a trip to the Dollar Tree before paying retail can save you a bundle. Check out these 7 items you should always look for at the Dollar Tree {BEFORE paying full price!}




1 . Floral Picks & Berries

These come in handy for making inexpensive wreaths or front door arrangements as the seasons change, or a fresh centerpiece for the table.



While there definitely are a few tacky flowers in the bunch, watch for a few that may work perfectly for your project. (Look for flowers or berries that look as close to real as possible.)  The smaller flowers and berry picks tend look to be a little more upscale than the big blooms.  (And what about those ADORABLE little faux succulents in pots?! I love those!)


2 . Mason Jars, Glass Vases & Glass Jars

One of the things I use most often in changing up the mantle or table decor are small glass jars. In fact, every time I walk in the Dollar Tree I make a beeline for the glassware aisle (I’m like a kid in a candy store when I’m there!)


How to Decorate for Fall at the Dollar Tree


Place a tall candle in the center of the vase or jar (you can even sneak a can under your candle to beef up a $1 Dollar Tree candle) and on the outside, layer with whatever seasonal decor you like (like corn for fall, Valentine candy in February, peppermint sticks at Christmas) ~ the possibilities are endless.



Tie on some Dollar Tree ribbon and Dollar Tree decor, and you’ve got a super cute centerpiece for just a few bucks. :)


Mason Jars are handy for all kinds of stuff . . . especially gifting goodies, like this simple Dollar Tree Easter Craft.


Or add a little spray paint for Spring vases too. 

And they make expensive-looking containers for birthday party favors too. (I love those!)




3 . Pots & Tins

Use pots and tins to organize a desk area and cut down clutter.  Do you have a silhouette cutter? (I love mine!)  Customize a pot or tin with a monogram  ~ chalkboard stickers work great too.  These candy-colored guys will add a little splash of color to a shelf display, or make them match your decor with spray paint.

Flower pots with a plant inside make great gifts too.  Let the kids paint a flower pot for Grandparent’s day and plant some seeds in it for an inexpensive gift.


4 . Frames

Inexpensive plastic frames are easy to transform with spray paint to coordinate with your wall collage – and no one will be able to tell those frames are just a buck.



You can also place a cute piece of fabric behind the glass to make a simple dry erase frame.  Use it to display your weekly menu plan or to-do list.


5 . Project Boards

This is my favorite thing to buy at the Dollar Tree. :) 

I’m always shocked at how much some stores charge for project boards or foam boards – definitely stock up on these for $1 when you get a chance!  They’re great for making signs and kids craft projects, and you can’t beat snatching them up for a buck.


6 . Craft Foam Wreaths & Balls

I could only find the floral foam wreaths this trip, but watch for craft foam and even small grapevine wreaths too.  (In a pinch – a pool noodle can work as a wreath base as well!)


Build on them by adding your favorite floral or berry picks, spray painted Easter eggs, or  a monogram in the middle.



7 . Ribbons, Twine, Glue Guns & Washi Tape

A pretty ribbon or twine bow can make the perfect finishing touch – but craft stores can charge $3 or $4 for a spool of ribbon.

Dollar Tree

Gather a few colors you like to have on hand at the Dollar Tree – you might even get lucky and find some burlap ribbon (woot!) which is useful for all sorts of crafts.



Bonus tip . . .

Watch the Dollar Tree for aluminum containers ~ while these are great for baking and taking meals in, I love them for easy clean up when working on a crafting project. Fun!


Do you love shopping the Dollar Tree as much as I do? :) Check out these extra saving secrets (they even take coupons ~ love that!), and leave a comment to share your favorite Dollar Tree finds.



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5 Steps To Start A Blog Today


Not all that long ago, I shared how I make a full time income as a stay-at-home mom.


As a stay-at-home-mom-and-blogger, to be exact.


I’ve been blogging now for over six years (c.r.a.z.y.), and while I still feel like I’m learning every single day, there are a few tricks over the years that really have helped it go more smoothly. And, while I love clipping coupons and saving big at the grocery store, being able to earn our family an extra income through blogging has been an incredible opportunity.

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And seriously one of my favorite accomplishments besides being wife to my cute husband and mom to three super fun kids. 


If you’ve been looking for a way to earn real, legitimate income from home (and are a decent writer ~ that’s kind of a requirement!), this might just be for you. 


Curious how to get started? Here are the very beginning basics . . . if you’re willing to really work (like really work) this may just be for you!


1. Decide what you’re going to blog about.

Do you love home design? Kids? Cats? Dogs? Saving money? Laundry? Cleaning house? Christmas?


If there’s something out there that you love and you think other folks would just love to read about too, you  might just be able to write a blog about it 


Determine one main focus for your blog, and stick to it. Here are a few questions to ask yourself as you get started:

  • Is this something I can write about for an extended period of time, and never get tired of talking about?
  • Is this something other people care about?
  • How can what I’m sharing help someone else? Will it be something people want to read every day?
  • Is this something I’m passionate about?
  • Is this something other people will be passionate about too?

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2. Start your blog with Blue Host.
  • Go HERE to start your blog with Blue Host.
  • Blue Host charges just $3.49 per month when using my link (otherwise you’ll pay more!), and will give you a free domain for 12 months when clicking through this link.
  • Included in your Blue Host account is WordPress, which is the very best program out there for starting new blogs. I was clueless about all this stuff the first few years that I blogged and started out on a platform called Blogger, and it took forever to move everything over to WordPress. It’s so worth starting out using the right program, and will make blogging easier for you in the long run.



3. Choose your blog name and set up hosting.

As soon as you register with Blue Host, you’ll need to create a domain name. I chose Publix Penny Pincher back when I started (before realizing I’d want to share deals at other stores), then swapped to Passionate Penny Pincher a few years in.


To make your life easier, choose a domain name that’s broad enough to work with you no matter what you want to write about, but focused enough to make sense for your audience. For example, my friend Michelle over at I Heart Publix runs an amazing site talking about nothing but Publix, and having a clear focus for her site has been very successful.


But, if you’re a little more willy nilly (like me!) and need some variety in your life, you may want to consider a name that can work with you no matter what you choose to write about.


Choosing Blue Host makes your domain name free for one year, so it’s a great way to start out with minimal fees up front. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll need to decide which plan to use – I’d stick with the basic plan for now and you can always upgrade later if your needs for web hosting change.


Quick tip – if you’re curious what web hosting even is (like I was when I started!), it’s a place that basically “hosts” your blog’s content so that people can access it. Think of it as your little room on the internet where folks can come read what you have to say!

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4. Create your WordPress account.

Once you sign up with Blue Host and have your domain name and hosting all set up, you’ll need to actually create your WordPress site.


Quick tip – WordPress is basically the program you use to make all the content you want to share with people “pretty” and accessible for them to see. 


This may sound overwhelming (it did to me too!), but basically once you set up your Blue Host account you’ll get an email that includes information about the “MOJO MARKETPLACE”. Once there:

  • Click “one click install” button
  • The choose the WordPress icon under blogs
  • Choose the “start” button to start installing WordPress.
  • Decide which domain you want to install WordPress on – there will be a drop down menu including your new domain.
  • Under “advanced options”, update your username and password (be sure to choose something secure – hackers OFTEN try to get into websites so you need to make sure your name and password are difficult to figure out.)
  • Check “automatically create a new database for this installation”
  • Click “install now”


5. Start blogging.

Once your site is up and running, you’ll want to start blogging, right? Here’s my suggestion and what I did when I first started:

  • Decide your blog “schedule.”
  • Blog for 2-3 weeks before sharing so that you have some content to share (and so that you know that you love it before putting it out there – I blogged for about a month just for myself to see if I really loved it – and obviously 6 years later I did!)
  • Once you know you love it (I bet you will!) start sharing with friends and family.

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When I first started I literally just emailed it out to a few folks I knew (I was TERRIFIED), and now get anywhere from 1.3-2 million pageviews each month (seriously, it’s nuts!)  Honestly though there’s no other job I could ever love as much as this one (I get to be home with my kids, work on my own schedule, and decide exactly how much I want to work each day), and goodness, I love it so much that I have a hard time walking away at the end of the day. It’s so fun to wake up each morning, set down to my desk and figure out what to share with you each day!




While it has been a lot (seriously, a lot) of work, I love (almost?) ever minute of it and am just amazed that your really can make a full time income blogging. It blows me away every day!  It’s not easy, but so worth it, and might just be a great way for you to earn an extra income too.



Would you love to know next steps on blogging? There are so many more tips out there and I would love to share them, so leave a comment here or send me an email if you’d like more and I may do a full series on blogging over the next few weeks. I love hearing from you!

how I make afull time income

Looking for more about how blogging works? Here you go!


This post contains affiliate links.  See my disclosure policy to learn more.

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2 Grocery Hacks You Need To Know


Sign up for PPP daily deal updates sent for FREE to your inbox! 

Last week I asked for some feedback on ways to make PPP a wee bit better, and I loved your responses. Two things that several folks asked though were things we already share (that happen to be some of my favorite features on PPP) so I wanted to make sure you knew how to access them. (I use them all the time!)


1. Quickly search any item on sale at dozens of stores every week.


Folks, I love this.


Like, L-O-V-E this.



If you’re looking for a certain item and need a deal ~ any item, just type it where the box says “need a deal” on the right hand side of the PPP page and you’ll get a huge list of exactly what you need.



So, let’s pretend you need Tide because you’re out of laundry detergent.


Type in “Tide” (just look for the place to type it in on the top right hand side of the page, or bookmark this link right here so you always have it available. . .)



And voila . . . 


ALL the deals you could ever want on Tide this week.


You’re welcome. :) 



So, if you need a ham for Easter dinner, Nestle Toll House Morsels to bake up some chocolate chip cookies, or are all out of diapers today, just type it in right here and easily find a stock up price.



2. The coupon database.


This database houses every single coupon you can imagine, all in one place.


If you need Colgate because it’s your favorite toothpaste and you’re all out . . .


Just type it in right here and you can find all the coupons available right now for Colgate. 


No coupons from the Sunday paper or anywhere at home right now?

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Easy ~ sort by printable coupons and all the coupons will be easy ones you can print from home.



And, while you’re at it you can print hundreds of dollars in free printable coupons over HERE.


Love that! 


Couponing for Beginners - Learn the lingo and make the most of your hard earned money by using coupons at all your favorite shopping locations.

New to saving at the grocery stores and don’t know where to start? Here are a few free resources to help you get started . . . 

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And, if you never want to miss a deal, don’t forget to subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher free daily email updates and get all the deals delivered directly to your inbox


Hope this makes your penny pinching go a wee bit smoother, and if you have other suggestions on things that would make using PPP a little easier, I’d sure love to hear those too! Leave a comment to share. (I love hearing from you!) :)

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Rare Heinz Distilled White Vinegar Coupon

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Hurry to print this rare new $.75/2 Heinz Distilled White Vinegar coupon! You can use it at Walmart to get 16 oz bottles for $.87 each when you purchase two and use coupon. Easter egg decorating is just around the corner, so grab these coupons before they’re gone and use them to snag a deal on Heinz Vinegar!


Soap Scum Remover - PINTEREST

Not sure what else to do with all that vinegar? Try out some of my favorite cleaning recipes using vinegar:


Print more high value printable coupons HERE. 


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25 Days of Small Space Makeovers Day 6: Entryway Closet Makeover



Sometimes a small space makeover can make a huge difference in the way that space functions and makes you feel!  This month our 25 Day Series is going to focus on making over small spaces (laundry rooms, closets, mud rooms…) on a small budget.  I hope these posts will help you find ways to make the most out of your own small spaces!



Check out how Shelley and Cason from The House of Smiths turned their small coat closet into a super functional entryway nook!  Go HERE to see their detailed tutorial and finished project.

See more Small Space Makerovers:

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6 Ways To Make Money From Amazon



You know I love ordering things from Amazon to make my life easier, but did you know Amazon will actually pay you for a few legitimate work from home opportunities too?  I’ve recently heard of a few new ways you can work for them, and had no idea there were so many options ~ especially great for bargain shopping penny pinchers like you and me.


While some of these may just earn you a few dollars, there are a few that you could potentially turn into full time incomes (crazy!) Here’s a peak at my favorites . . .

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1. Sell your own stuff through Amazon.

You can sell books, DVDs, video games, gadgets and more through Amazon ~ find out more HERE


Pros ~ EASY, and you can clean out a few closets.

Cons ~ You probably won’t get rich, but you can make quite a bit if you have the right things to sell!

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2. Work from home as an Amazon CSA (customer service agent. )

Learn more HERE.

Pros ~ great way to work from home for a legitimate company.

Cons ~ must live in AZ, KY, TX, WV, DE, MN, FL, GA, KS, NC, TN, WI, and VA


3. Sell for Amazon as an FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) Seller.

Okay, I had never heard of this until my friend Lynette suggested it as an income earning option for my teenager, but it’s genius.


In a nutshell, you shop stores like you normally do, and if you see some crazy clearance offer, you purchase them to “resell” on Amazon. Let me walk you through the steps:

  • Sign up for an Amazon Seller account (it’s free to sign up for and use for the first 30 days, but costs $39.99 per month after that.)
  • Head to Target (or another favorite store) for your regular shopping trip.
  • Scan the clearance aisles for any crazy good deals.
  • Using the Amazon seller app, find out how much those items retail for with Amazon, then decide if you can make enough profit selling your item.
  • Ship the items to Amazon
  • Make a profit when you list the items on Amazon for higher than you purchased them for, but still a reasonable price.
  • Learn more details HERE and HERE.


Pros – Great way to earn extra income, especially if you’re a bargain shopper.

Cons – You have to pay a $39.99 fee each month after your first month, so need to be sure to at least make that much each month. 

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4. Create an online store at Amazon.

Okay, this takes a lot of explaining, but if you have some basic business background, I think you can do this.  My friend Toni started her eCommerce site through Amazon last fall, and made $100,000 in one month.




(Full disclosure: Toni is an incredibly smart business woman and making that kind of money in a month doesn’t happen to most folks. But, if you find the right product and market it to the right audience, you may be able to make a nice little income this way!)

Basically, you create a product (or purchase a product, often from overseas), and create an online store for it. If you create the right product at the right time, you could make an incredible income this way! Learn more HERE and HERE.


(Like I said, this one is a little overwhelming even for me, but I hated not to share it because it’s fascinating to me that real people are really doing this!)


Pros – The potential for income here is huge, IF you happen upon the right product at the right time.

Cons – You need some basic business sense, as well as cash flow to get started. It would be interesting to earn money through one of the other options at Amazon and use that money to start this!


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5. Become an Amazon affiliate.


If you have a blog or website, become an Amazon affiliate to earn income when your readers purchase from Amazon. As I share in the bottom of each of my Amazon posts, I’m an Amazon affiliate and when you all use my links to purchase items from Amazon I make a commission. It’s one of the ways that I’ve turned blogging into a full time income (and I really do appreciate you using my site to shop so much!)

(By the way, if you’re interested in starting a blog, you can get one started for just $3.99 per month through Blue Host. Love that!)


Pros – any blogger can set up an Amazon affiliate account.

Cons – you have to have a decent sized readership to make much money from it, but six years in I promise it’s worth it. 


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6. Do small tasks through Amazon’s Mechanical Turk.

Amazon has online “jobs” that pay real money for things like describing an image, writing a small bit of content, and more. You won’t get rich this way (at all) and some of it may just be busy work online, but you could potentially earn some added income through Mechanical Turk.


I don’t completely understand this one (haven’t tried it out myself), but am thinking I may ask my 15 year old to see what he thinks as I love the idea of a flexible schedule for him. Learn more HERE and HERE, and if you’ve tried this I’d love to hear what you think!


Pros – work from anywhere, very little skill involved.

Cons – pretty low paying, but might be worth it for “busy” work from home



Are you looking to make an extra income from home? These might be a few ways to get started, and they really do work (plus see more options over HERE.)


So, what are you going to do today to get started? I’d love to hear your goals, and if you come up with other work from home ideas, leave a comment to share those too!


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