Why I Started Entering Contests and a Little About Me


I get asked so often about how I got into entering contests and how I win some of the amazing high value prizes I have won.  So "Hi!" from me. Lets get acquainted. 

So I am taking today to sit down with a coffee and share more of a personal side of me and my life with you. A little behind the scenes look into my life you could say. 

I have to say I have met some of the most amazing positive fun people in this hobby.  If you love contests as much as I do and want to share your wins or get inspiration join me on FB in my private contesting group.

How Contest Entering Started for Me

As a child I was super competitive. I played harp for many years and won a ton of prizes based on my skill. I was pretty lucky to have an amazing teacher Judy Loman previously of the Toronto Symphony and one of her understudy's Maureen C. It built a very winning character in me and it has stuck with me into my adult life. 

As a young teen I would enter any contest I came across whether it be at the local community center or in school. I even would scour magazines for the contests at the back. 

In my late teens I experienced a very traumatic incident that lasted for 3 days that left me with permanent damage and a permanent disability. This meant the majority of my time is at home. 

The next chapter of my life was having my 4 sons one of which was needed more in heaven than with me. Having 3 sons to raise at the age of 23 made it so money was tight. I realised that spending money on all their friends birthday gifts and parties, providing all the things they needed was going to take more than I currently had...

That's when I turned to online contests. I won my very first online contest on Facebook back in 2007 with Skinny Cow. They had a comment to win contest and they didn't even describe the prize. There were a ton of comments saying it was a scam and no one really commented with a response to their question beside me. 

10 Lucky people won and when my prize arrived that was it! I was hooked! The prize was a $400 digital camera, 10 free product coupons, a stuffy and more! I couldn't believe it. All for leaving a simple comment on a Facebook post. 

Thanks to contests I was able to provide amazing Christmases without ever spending a dime out of a very tight single person income. I won everything my kids needed. Between extreme couponing and contests I was able to provide a comfortable childhood for my boys. I focused on only contests that had prizes I could use for my sons or their friends birthday parties they were always attending. Contests were truly a lifesaver for me. 

Fast forward to the current day for the last handful of years I can finally focus on prizes I really want to win and not need to win. I have been so blessed to be able to win so many amazing prizes and so many high value prizes. 

I stick to entering only contests that offer prizes I really need or want in my life. The boring win a t-shirt, or a pop top contests have no lure for me anymore. I don't need clutter or useless prizes. I win prizes that save me a fortune and that enhance my life in some way. 

Does my Contest Hobby Cost Me Money?

 It doesn't. Even when I enter receipt contests that require a purchase I use previously won gift cards to pay for those products. This means the money never comes from my budget. 

Any Amazon gift cards I win or earn online I save for when a receipt contest comes along. Yes most contests allow you to enter Amazon receipts to enter. There is a special way you need to enter those receipts and I show you how here 👉 How to enter Amazon receipts for contests

I personally love receipt contests and have won some amazing prizes by entering them. The Snacktion contest being the latest one. I spent $30 on Cadbury chocolate and won a $10,000 Samsung prize pack. With a TV I could only ever dream of owning, and a complete Samsung surround sound system. Seems worth the investment right? 


Instant win contests are also among my top favourites for entering. I win so many fun prizes that make great gifts for family and friends. I love making up gift baskets filled with instant win prizes I have won and giving them out to people.  

Do I Have a Bucket List of Prizes?

I sure do! Years ago I was like the thirsty contesters you come across today. I have definitely learned over the years the pickier you are about what you enter and the more focused the more you win.  But after years of winning so many amazing prizes I have gotten much more intentional with my entering. My time is spent more wisely on contests I have a real shot of winning. I focus on only what I need to make my life easier or better. 

 2023 Was particularly amazing for me and I was able to cross 2 of my biggest items off my bucket list. 

  • Samsung TV over 60 inches (Snacktion contest)
  • 3D Printer ( Won on Best Buy Blog giveaways)
  • Sony Vlog camera of any kind
  • Gift cards of any kind
  • RV Solar Panels
  • Espresso Machine
  • Self Cleaning Cat Litter Machine
  • Bluetti 
My list has dwindled in the last couple of years. I have won so many of the items I was dreaming of owning. It took lots of work and dedication to entering daily and not missing a single entry. I also have used the NPN option more often than ever before in my contest hobby. 

How Many Hours a Day I Enter Contests

Like I said earlier I am disabled so I am home 99% of the time. I used to spend 6-8 hours a day entering online contests. In the last 3 years I have brought that time down drastically and I win higher value prizes and enjoy the hobby so much more. 

I wake up at 4 AM everyday. I have tried to break that habit but it seems impossible for me. I win almost all my instant prizes in those wee early morning hours. I make coffee and spend the first two hours of the day entering my daily contests from my spreadsheet. I then check my emails and do a clean sweep of them to make sure I haven't missed a winning email. 

I then put the laptop away and do whatever I have planned for this website. I have learned that with contesting I wasn't getting nearly enough exercise and I wasn't walking enough. I have started forcing myself to get out for at least one walk a day for my physical and mental health. 

In the evening I spend another couple hours checking my Instagram tags, emails and entering new contests that I come across. 

Here is a confession you probably don't need to know, but I am an over sharer so here it goes. I absolutely love having a hot bath and searching for the newest contests and blogger giveaways. It's so relaxing to just scroll through all my social media accounts and enter to win prizes while soaking in some Dr.Teals epsom salts. 

Why I started this Blog

Watching people online comment so often that they didn't understand how to enter, and seeing the frustration bugged me. Most times brands wouldn't take the time to explain to their followers how to enter and people missed out on winning prizes. 

I get the best feeling in the world seeing someone win their very first prize and even their 500th prize.  Seeing someone so happy over a win is just the best. I also use the website as my motivation for my own contest hobby. 

I love sharing tips and more in-depth explanations on how to enter contests online and encouraging people to win prizes. You will notice I don't do sponsored posts or promote things that don't work. This blog is to help people start winning prizes and to share some of the amazing wins and the how to's of those wins with others. 

This hobby can take you away from your daily stresses, bring an excitement to your day and  reward you for your hard work of entering contests on a consistent basis. It's one of the best hobbies in my books. 

Goals I Have for My Contest Hobby this Year

#1 My biggest goal for myself is to not pass up a single receipt survey contest. Even though I know they are winnable and have had friends win them and lucky members of my contest group win, I tend to forget them and just not get around to entering.  I am going to make sure that every receipt with a survey contest on it gets entered. 

#2 I take one day a week where I stay off the internet to give myself a mental break. My goal is to make it 2 solid days where I turn off my cell not open my laptop and focus on myself.  I have seen a pattern with my hobby. When I take good chunks of time away from entering contests or being on social media I come back and win more prizes in a shorter period of time. I keep my spreadsheet of prizes won and watch all the patterns and the ups and downs of the hobby. It pays off to step back and take a real me time break. 

I hope that if you love contests you find your perfect rhythm and you win what you are dreaming about. Remember to stay humble and always be kind. 🍀

Wishing You Good Luck!