5 highly useful free sites
The Internet is a wonderful thing. In what seems like just a few short years, this phenomenon has changed our lives — and the world. Some days I wonder how we lived without it. But even with all of its wonderful qualities, the Internet can be very intimidating. Sometimes you just need a friend (like me) to slog through all of the nonsense and point you to websites that are highly useful and — most of all — free!
A BOWL FULL OF LEMONS. Just in case one of your resolutions this year is to get more organized, check out A Bowl Full of Lemons, an online community for those striving to get their lives in order. The website is loaded with ideas and weekly challenges to get you into organization mode. You’ll also find tips on budgeting and ways to clean your house.
RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS. Watching the news these days can make us want to run for cover. But instead of hiding, make your own corner of the world a better place to be. Visit the Random Acts of Kindness website. You’ll find lots of free and low-cost ideas for spreading kindness, such as letting someone go ahead of you in the shopping line or giving someone you meet a sincere compliment. Personally, I am drawn to the “sew for free” idea. I love needle-and-thread crafts, so the idea of offering to mend, hem or sew someone’s clothes for free, as a simple act of kindness, appeals to me.
NEIGHBORHOOD SCOUT. If you are planning to move to a new area or you’re simply curious about how your current town fares overall, check out Neighborhood Scout, a site with real estate resources for people considering buying a new home.
Once you’ve searched for your town, you’ll find neighborhood information on crime rates, public schools, real estate appreciation and much more.
Some crime indexes or school ratings may require a subscription fee to access, but an extensive amount of information is free. This is worth checking out.
SENIOR DISCOUNTS. If you’re over 50, you can take advantage of some great discounts. It’s just a matter of knowing where to find them. Visit my website and search for the “Senior List” page. Simply enter your ZIP code to find savings in your area.
THE BUY NOTHING PROJECT. If you’re familiar with the Freecycle Network, the online nonprofit movement that lets you give and get almost anything for free, there’s a second option in town: the Buy Nothing Project. This network is built on the same premise as the Freecycle Network, but you make connections with others through Facebook specifically.
Maybe you’d like to unload some furniture without paying a take-away fee, or perhaps you’re looking to buy a specific piece. It can all happen through a Buy Nothing group. Find a local Buy Nothing group and join through Facebook to get started.