Post # 1
My Darling Husband unfortunately lost his wedding band, and is very upset about it. It doesn’t look promising that we’ll ever get it back, so I’m hoping I can surprise him with a new one when our anniversary rolls around. However, it won’t be much of a surprise if $400 suddenly disappears from our bank account and he asks about it, so I’m trying to think of ways I can quietly put money aside that he won’t question. I’m trying to think of things I can make/thrift and sell (I can crochet and sew pretty decently), but I don’t really know where to start, or even if there might be some other options to subtly make extra cash. Any suggestions?
Post # 2
kiram : Does your grocery store allow you to add extra cash to the bill? If you have 6 months (24 weeks) you could add just $20 per week and have all you need by March.
Post # 3
How long until your anniversary? Could you take out say $20/week from your account and not have it questioned? Go to the grocery store and ask to get cash back?
Selling crafty things is a great idea but it can be a tricky market to get into. For awhile I was selling knit tea cozies for $20-40 each. I also sold handmade stitch markers, etc. all on Etsy. But it took a little while to become established enough that people actually started buying
Post # 4
ooh this is fun!
This depends on your budget/ assets and what’s “below” the level your hubby will notice.
For instance, does he notice the cost of your groceries? Can you swap out more expensive items and buy groceries on sale elsewhere? If you can swap a $76 bill for a $100 bill by driving across town, buying from cheaper stores, or otherwise inconveniencing yourself, go for it.
Do you eat out for lunch? You can sneak a sandwich from home, and just take out money from your account for “lunch” a couple of days. That could be another $10 per “lunch”
What I’m getting at is rounding “up” your expenses while rounding down your actual spending, but doing it across the board so that the difference each time is quite low.
If you’re on a tightly managed budget, or you work from home, or your hubby is actually aware of the price of items in your shopping cart, then you’ll have to get crafty.
Buying an item that he’ll forget (laundry detergent, plain socks, kids stuff) and then returning it every once in a while can also help get you there faster. Some guys will register the new item, but not the return.
Post # 5
Sell some things on craigslist (like some of your old clothes, jewelry, furniture, etc). If Darling Husband questions it, just say you felt like clearing out a little!
Post # 6
Withdrawing small amounts would be a great idea, but we buy most things with a card so if I suddenly started withdrawing cash each week, he’d probably ask me why (and I’m terrible at making up excuses that sound realistic, lol).
coffeecakez: Those are some great ideas! But yes, he’s pretty attentive of our budget and how much we spend on things and what we spend it on (I’m quite the penny pincher so he knows I mostly buy essentials and the best deals to begin with). Returning things is a crafty idea, though! I could probably come up with something there.
kimmacph: You’re right, getting into the market of handmade business is pretty tricky, which is why I find it a bit daunting and don’t know where to start. I might be in a bit of a pickle considering my circumstances right now, but my goal doesn’t seem terribly impossible so I at least want to try!
LittleByLittle: I’ve been trying that, too 🙂 I’m trying to sell some old vintage costume jewelry I’ve never worn, so hopefully someone buys it but I can only hope. Unfortunately I don’t have too many things worth selling! But any little bit helps. I’m sure I’ll have to employ several different tactics to get there.
Post # 7
You can buy giftcards at kroger. I would just start adding on $10 or $20 on gift cards here and there. At my groccery stores, I can get pre-paid visa cards which would be good anywhere.
Eventually you could use a bunch of smaller visa cards to buy a larger visa card, so you don’t need to take 40 $10 prepaid cards to the ring store.
Post # 8
kiram : You could try the Ibotta app that gives you cash back for things you’ve purchased. It’s mostly groceries, but there are other stores on there as well. I’ve made a couple hundred bucks that way in the past few months. I don’t go out of my way to buy things with rebates, but I’ll just buy the brand with a rebate if I’m already looking for something. Like if I want beer, I’ll buy the brand with a $5 rebate instead of my normal brand. The rebates get transferred to paypal.
You could also try survey sites. I’ve had good luck with OpinionOutpost. It’s kind of time consuming, but when I’ve stuck to it, spending 30 mins-1 hour per day doing surveys (mostly when I’m bored at work), I can make $10 every few days. I’ve also got to do some cool product tests and watch TV pilots before they air, which is fun. This also goes to paypal.
Post # 9
Are you going to have this problem every anniversary/ birthday/ Christmas? Seems like a hassle to try to sell your stuff every time to keep the surprise.
Post # 10
If you live near a city, look for paid focus groups – I’ve heard these can pay pretty well. If you live near a university, you could also look to see if they have any departments (e.g. psychology dept) paying for participants in studies – often you just need to fill out a survey or do a test of some kind, but medical studies can be an option too. You could also look into selling plasma at your local blood bank.
Post # 11
italianbride0508 : I like that gift card idea! Thanks!
SithLady : I was thinking about surveys, but I always thought they were kinda shady. I might check that one out 🙂
zzar45 : Oh certainly not! It’s not that I want to hide the fact I’m getting him a gift at all, I just dont want him to figure out what I got him. I don’t really mind if he figures out a $40 Christmas gift, but this case is really special. And $400 spent right between he lost his ring and our anniversary would be way too obvious what the present is. Part of the surprise is that it’s such a pricey gift, anyway 😉
browneyedgirl24 : Also interesting options!
Post # 12
kiram : interesting ideas from everyone. I’m just wondering though… if you take months to save out the money in order to avoid his noticing well, what if he just goes ahead and buys his own replacement in the meantime? I guess I just don’t see the point of keeping this plan a secret when he could blow it himself.
Post # 13
kiram : PM me about the vintage jewelry!
Post # 14
skunktastic : I’ve thought about that, too. There’s always a chance of that I suppose, he has mentioned recently that he wants to get another one. However I’m counting on both his procrastination, his stinginess, and his busy schedule to hold him off for long enough. $400 isn’t petty cash to us (not a bank breaker, but also another reason I’d ideally like to get extra cash to help buy it), so he’d definitely at least tell me he’s going to buy one which should give me the chance to talk him out of it.
It wouldn’t be the end of the world if I just tell him I’d like to buy him one, but I think the effort to make it a surprise is worth a try, even if it doesn’t work out. And hey, making some extra cash never hurts anyway 🙂
Post # 15
I had a friend who donated plasma during college for extra cash, might be worth looking into.