Challenges Archive

The 4 Gift Christmas Challenge

As you may be currently experiencing, Holiday shopping can get crazy expensive.  According to the National Retail Federation,  the average consumer plans on spending a total of $935.58 this Holiday shopping season.

Therefore I want to challenge you to only buy each of your children 4 Christmas Gifts this year.

Yes, only 4:

  1. Something they want
  2. Something they need
  3. Something to wear
  4. Something to read

Image result for santa claus png

Consider also adding in a larger gift item from Santa that he brings for the whole family.

What you may discover afterwards:

  • Your kids will be more appreciative and more grateful of their belongings
  • You’ll have more time spent together on Christmas rather than picking up tons of wrapping paper
  • Less toys that don’t get played with will be laying around

Plus, your budget will thank you 🙂

MSQ June / July 2016 Challenge



This is the 4th edition of the Money Saving Quest challenge!

Challenges will be monthly and I will try to make them both interesting and inspiring. If you have any ideas for future ones, please let me know 🙂

Anyways, onto the challenge…


Challenge #4

The challenge is simply to pick a weekend in June or July where you will spend NOTHING.  Nada.  No money leaves your wallet or bank account for two days.  Use only what you already have on hand until Monday comes around.

The key is not to spend on dining out, entertainment or other “mindless” purchases.   If you run out of gas, obviously this would be an exception to the rules.

Also, make sure the rest of your household is on board.  This will make it a lot easier to be successful with this challenge.

This is a great challenge for those (like myself) who tend to spend the most of their money on the weekends, are living paycheck to paycheck, or are trying to stick to a strict budget. 

Such a “spending fast” helps break addictive spending behaviors and teaches you to delay purchasing things you WANT (rather than NEED).

Free entertainment, or things to do that don’t require spending money:

  • Go to your local library
  • Take advantage of memberships you already have (i.e. YMCA)
  • Find free Redbox movie rental codes
  • Use gift cards
  • Have a game night
  • Go for a bike ride or a walk
  • Exercise
  • Cook
    • Look through your cupboards / pantry for items you’ve forgotten about
  • Catch up on DIY projects
  • Organize / Clean / Sell
  • Learn something new

*One goal is to find ways that you and your family can spend memorable and quality time on weekends together that doesn’t involve spending money*

Grow Magazine: 15 simple ways to save (without being a social recluse)


Free Syracuse Events

Barnes & Noble:
B Fest Teen Book Festival

Relive the Magic of Harry Potter

Bass Pro Shops:
FREE Door Hanger
Store Event: June 11 & 12, 18 & 19

Home Depot:
June 4th, 9am to 12pm – Kids Workshop (Build a free Father’s Day Trophy Smart Phone Holder)
June 18th, 10am to 11:30am – Father’s Day Workshop: Football Toss

Krispy Kreme:
June 3rd – Krispy Kreme will be offering up a Free Doughnut of your choice at participating locations – no purchase necessary

Lego Store:
June 7th + 8th – Lego Monthly Mini Model Build (free LEGO Seaplane model)


Captain America


June 11th – Lowe’s Build & Grow Clinic – Free Captain America build







Toys R Us / Babies R Us:

Speed Champions

June 18th, 11am to 1 pm – bring home an exclusive LEGO Speed Champions mini-trophy for FREE


National Parks:

Every Kid In A Park Logo
For fourth-graders only

For a limited time, head over here where they are offering Fourth-Grade kids and their families FREE access to ALL Federal parks, lands and waters through August 31st


Bass Pro Shops:

summer camp logo

Home Depot:
July 2nd, 9am to 12pm – Kids Workshop (Build a free Ice Age Bowling Game)

Lego Store:
July 5th + 6th – Lego Monthly Mini Model Build (free LEGO Frog model)





July 9th – Lowe’s Build & Grow Clinic – Free Marvel Falcon Build




July 23rd – Lowe’s Build & Grow Clinic – Free Thor Figure Build





Saturday, July 23rd from 12PM-4 PM



No-Restaurant Month

Cut your restaurant spending down to zero for an entire calendar month. No dinners out, no takeout, and no coffee runs either. Just good old fashioned home cooking (or microwaving, whatever suits your skill set).

Restaurants not your thing? If you already cook at home a bunch, you can translate the no-restaurant challenge to your own lifestyle, choosing instead to forgo spending on booze, manicures, or whatever your vice may be.

Cash-Only Weekends

Does your budget get away from you on the weekends? Instead of swiping your debit card a few dozen times each day, take one stop by the ATM on Friday afternoon to withdraw as much cash as you’ve budgeted for the weekend’s fun money. Use the cash to pay for dinner, drinks and entertainment… until it runs out. You’ll force yourself to be more mindful of your weekend spending, and hopefully budget to make a modest amount of cash last until Monday.


Post a comment and let us know some of the ways you cut back on spending !

MSQ January / February 2016 Challenge


So its a new year, which means a fresh start with new goals and ambitions 🙂

Don’t fret — Money Saving Quest is here to help you with your financial-related goals!

The first challenge for this year is one that lies dear to our core: the 365 Day Challenge.  It is a spin on the 52 week money saving challenge.  Although there are many variations out there, I will be trying the one outlined here (and I hope you will, too!) by, as people from all different financial situations can participate.   Here are the details and resources you will need:

365 Day Challenge

How it works

  • Each morning (yes, everyday!) pay yourself first an amount from to $3.65.
    • Doing so on a daily basis requires you to think about it each day, and thus, make it a habit.
  • After paying yourself, “X” out the amount on the printable challenge chart (see below).
  • Pay any remaining amounts the following day.
  • Continue doing so for 365 days

Tips / Resources

  • Place your challenge sheet in a place where it will act as a reminder each day
  • You can pay in order or out of order, whichever you prefer.
    • If paying in order, it will look like this:

Day 1: 1 cent

Day 2: 2 cents

Day 100: 1.00

Day 365: 3.65


  • You can create a jar that will be used solely to hold the savings (coins and bills)
  • Another great idea is to transfer/deposit directly into your savings account
    • Only if there are no fees associated with doing so
  • There are some mobile apps out there that can help with the process:


(click on image to enlarge & print)

365 Day Saving Money Challenge

End Results/Goal

After the 365 days, you will have saved a total of $667.95.  This is a good amount to start an emergency fund, use towards home improvements, etc.

Once completed, you are likely to continue on with this as it will become a daily habit 🙂


Comment with any saving tips/tricks that you find helpful



“It’s Not How You Save – It’s That You Save”



MSQ: November Challenge


This is the 2nd ever Money Saving Quest challenge!

Challenges will be monthly and I will try to make them both interesting and inspiring.  If you have any ideas for future ones, please let me know :)

Anyways, onto the challenge…



Challenge #2

November’s challenge is all about earning some extra cash for the Holidays from your computer chair!

I’m not talking about earth shattering amounts of money here, but every bit helps.  This time of the year can be challenging financially, so let’s help pay for a few presents 🙂

Here are some ways to make money online in your spare time (+ most of these you can start right away):

  • Freelancing:
    • Fiverr

Also, if you live in Arizona, Kentucky, Texas, West Virginia, Delaware, Minnesota, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, North Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin,  or Virginia, Amazon is currently hiring for both full time and part time seasonal customer service associate positions.

If you already do a lot of these, I challenge you to find an additional one to take on.  I currently have been trying Inbox Dollars, which gives you $5 just for signing up.

Comment below with what you do currently to make a few extra bucks and which ways you find the most worth your time 🙂

MSQ: October Challenge



This is the first ever Money Saving Quest challenge!

Challenges will be monthly and I will try to make them both interesting and inspiring.  If you have any ideas for future ones, please let me know 🙂

Anyways, onto the first challenge…

Challenge #1

Here at Money Saving Quest, we believe in helping others.  We also believe in removing clutter from our lives so we can focus on what matters most.  The challenge this month is to simply go through your old clothes and other items in your house that you have no use for.  Fill a trash bag (or two!) with them and then donate to a local charity of your choice.

Giving means everything

…and can be anything! From shirts and pants to housewares, or even exercise equipment and electronics. Your old stuff can go a long way for someone new. Even great grandma’s old tattered fur coat could be used to keep kittens warm in an animal shelter. How cool is that? Look around your home—you might find there’s more to give than you thought.

The above quote by the Glad to Give campaign is the inspiration for this challenge.

As part of this campaign they are giving away a FREE Yellow Bag in hopes that it will inspire you to donate items to your local charity.


Post a comment and let us know what you were #GladToGive !



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