I got a free Motorola Q 9 from a survey site! Not kidding…

Q 9hAs you may or may not know, I work from home as a freelance web and graphic designer, online boutique owner, auction seller, etc.  I, like many others, have also been lured into the potentially shady, waste of your time world of paid (or not-so) online surveys.  There are times when my regular work is slow, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt in my down time to see if one could actually make any money from any of those survey sites that are all over the place.

I went crazy and signed up at a slew of survey sites.  Most survey sites that you come across are just directories of real survey sites, and so I often felt that it was just a stupid wild goose chase.  A lot of survey sites only give people sweepstakes entries for surveys completed; those are a waste of time IMHO.

I did come across a few survey sites that I found to be completely legit, and I actually got something from them.  Two days ago, I got a free Motorola Q 9 delivered to me from one of them!  No shit.  I figured I’d post about them, because I know a lot of people out there search for paid survey sites, and maybe this will help prevent someone from going on a wild goose chase, or even worse, paying someone for a list of legit survey sites, as some sites you come across try to get you to do.

Plus, I just wanted to show off my new Moto $400 smart phone that I got for free!

The site I ended up getting the free phone from is Lightspeed Panel. I had been signed up with them and taking surveys for a month or so before I got the phone.  I took every survey they sent.  I’m not sure if those factors had anything to do with me getting the phone or not.  I started a survey they sent me which was about cell phones, and it ended with them asking if I’d like to receive the phone and participate in a study about it and it’s OS, Windows Mobile.

How it works is I get to keep the phone for a year and use it as my regular phone.  They send periodic surveys through e-mail and to the phone.  There’s also a little feedback system on the phone where if I like or don’t like something, I can take a screenshot and send it to them with a comment.  They want you to have unlimited data on your cell phone plan so you can use the internet features at will and really test all of the phone’s features.  They send me a $40 check every month to cover the data plan, which is more than enough.  I also get an additional $50 check for taking a particular initial survey of the phone.

So, in short, I just got an awesome smart phone to use, with unlimited data added to my cell phone plan for free, and then some!

Other than randomly sending you things, Lightspeed rewards you with points for every survey you complete.  The points can be redeemed for $ sent to your Paypal account, various gift certificates, electronic and other items, etc.  I took a few surveys, and redeemed some points for $5 sent to my Paypal account, which I really got.  I have enough points for another $5, but I’m going to save them up and get something better.

Another site that’s good is American Consumer Opinion.  I got a check in the mail for $7 from them for completing just one survey, and I have a couple more checks on the way.  Every survey you complete from them gets you a check in the mail.

There is also MySurvey.com.  They also operate on a points per completed survey basis.  You redeem your points for cash, various merchandise, etc.  I got a free 10 pound bag of Purina One cat food sent to me to try and take a survey about.  I believe I’ve also got a box of hair color coming to me.  Haven’t redeemed my points for anything yet.

I also got a one time mystery shopper gig from one of them, but I can’t remember which survey site it came from.  I’ll edit this when I figure it out lol.  I’m going to be a mystery shopper at a restaurant, and take a survey afterwards.  They’re going to reimburse me with $40.

Yes, a couple of the survey links above are affiliate links.  But I’d be foolish if they weren’t, since I’m posting the links anyway.  ;) I get a dollar or so if people sign up….

So, if you’re bored, go take some surveys and get stuff hehe.

Feel free to write to me if you want more info…

Today

is best friend day.  :/

And, it’s also the first day of July, which is one of my favorite months!  Mainly because my birthday, and my sisters’ birthdays are this month.  But also just because it’s summer, and I LOVE summer!  Yay!

young mind

I wish I could re-train my mind to work like a child’s. I dabble with web and graphic design, but I’ve never taken the time to learn Flash. I’ve opened the program before, and almost immediately decided that I wouldn’t “get it” without devoting tons of time to it. So I closed it and moved on. I don’t need to use Flash to produce a web site.

I have an 11 year old daughter who loves to use the computer. She has her own WordPress based web site that I set up for her, and she’s quite proud of. I helped her customize the theme. I’ve taught her some basic HTML coding and graphic design in the past. She’s interested in learning more, and I figure it wouldn’t hurt for her to have those skills under her belt, so I installed Photoshop, Dreamweaver, and Flash on her computer so she could mess around with them.
That same day, she already had Flash worked out, and had created a stop motion video in it!

What is it about our minds that changes as we get older? It’s not that we loose the desire or ability to learn new things. We don’t loose intelligence. So why is it that I can’t even stand the thought of opening Flash and trying to figure it out, while my young daughter pretty much attacked it and made it hers?

Is it our past failures, and not wanting to have that feeling again that stops us from trying? While a child that’s never really had any major failures or setbacks simply believes that they can do anything? Thus their quest for knowledge isn’t tainted by thoughts like “I don’t know why I’m trying this; I’ll just mess it up,etc….”. They just believe they can do it, and they do it.

Wow, I’m really butchering this post. I’m horrible at expressing my thoughts. It’s perfect in my head; a jumbled mess of random thoughts in text form…. But hopefully someone gets what I’m trying to say.

skin too thin

Helloooooooo! Just feeling the need to express something that’s on my mind: I was going around the ‘net today making sure my businesses were properly linked in the major search engines, etc. when I came across my web design business listing on Yahoo! local. I added that listing quite a while ago, and hadn’t been back to look at it for some time.
I saw that I had a rating of one star, and my mood plummeted dangerously low instantly as if my dog were just run over in front of my eyes. I’ve never worked with anyone that wasn’t satisfied that I know of, so I can’t imagine who would have rated me one star? Unless it was just some random bored person that decided to give me one star because they didn’t like the business name or something……….
I wish rating systems on sites like that weren’t so anonymous so that any Joe-schmoe can click away and ruin a good person’s reputation. I really can’t imagine anyone that knows me or has worked with me would have done that.
I really need to work on having more of a “thick skin”. I’ve always been over-sensitive to things like this. People say that anyone in a creative sort of industry should have a thick skin, and take criticism with a grain of salt; that’s one trait I’m lacking. I just wish I knew who did it, and why? Oh well……….moving on now……….. :)
So, how’s your day?

HPF boutique open!

Hello! Does anyone come here? I sort of feel like I’m just talking (or typing) to myself. Not that I’ve written anything profound that would make people want to visit hehe. Well, I’ve officially opened the Hot Pink Flamingo boutique at www.boutique.hotpinkflamingo.net. The selection is currently pretty limited, but I should be adding lots more very soon. Please pass the word!

I’ve really got to get this domain organized; it’s a mess right now. I realize that the web services link in the menu doesn’t currently go to a page about web services – that will point to my new web design mini-site shortly. I plan to make this very site a subdomain (heather.hotpink…..), and have the main domain page be a menu for the different sub-sites. Did that make sense?

I’ve been neglecting my No Doubt site again (greenerpastures.us); I’m feeling guilty about that. All signs point to No Doubt releasing another album fairly soon, so I’ve really got to get the site moving to support them….

what do do?

I’m debating over whether to use this domain just for my web design business again. I know it would make it more professional and “cleaner”, but I just don’t wanna!! Not that I have much on here right now, anyway…. Maybe I should make a subdomain for the personal stuff?