Tuesday, 1 January 2019

It's the end of the year as we know it.....

It's the end of the year as we know it..... and I'm feeling great.

Here is a recap of my comping year in 2018.

I won 407 prizes with an accumulative RRP of approx. £17000. I don't have an exact figure at the moment as I'm awaiting several bundle prizes that I'm unsure of the exact contents/value for.

Of those 407 wins the most productive platform for me was Instagram where I had 126 wins - this is even with me taking a couple of months off! Here is a pie chart to show how my wins breakdown across platforms. The 'Other' category refers to apps as I was lucky enough to win on a few apps such as Snapchat and MediaRewards this year and didn't feel those wins would fit in any other category.

My best month wins wise was August which saw me win 45 prizes followed by December with 44 but generally I was winning over 30 prizes a month apart from April, September and October where I was having issues with J and schools. It works out at an average of 1.12 prizes per day.

Value wise my average prize value is £41.77 per prize but this is massively skewed as there are small wins such as my lowest value win of a Chocolate bar valued at £1 to a highest value win of a pair of designer watches worth £1600 followed by the amazing Enid Blyton book win worth over £600!

I did partake in several effort competitions this year although I could have done more but we did well with what I entered. My favourites being Pancake day which saw us with 8 wins and Halloween with 5.

I tried my best with the Heart Family Challenges which frustrated the hell out of me as I had great feedback from everyone except Heart themselves!

At the start of the year as a family we create a Wishlist and out of 25 items we managed to tick off 17 which I'm really pleased with especially as they were things I've wanted to win for years like a PS4!

We have another Wishlist prepared for 2019 to get working on!

My favourite win of 2018 has to be the tickets to Cbeebies Summer Social as J got to meet Andy Day who is one of his idols. It was amazing to see his face light up when he realised it was the real Andy and he could touch him and talk to him about dinosaurs. 

It's because of prizes like that that I comp as it gives me the chance to give my family the treats and experiences they wouldn't normally get. It's allowed me to provide J's old school with a large quantity of books to restock their library. It's allowed me to feel like Santa and take a large sack of puzzles, toys and DVD's with us to our appointment on Christmas Eve for the children who aren't able to spend Christmas at home and it's allowed me to keep my nan stocked up on enough lotions and potions to see her till she's 305.

December and how I did....

December was manic! 

I had all intents of being super duper organised and had cleared lots of MSE and Competition Database in preparation. I'd set folders up. I was really looking forward to December and Advents. 

It didn't work.. this has probably been my most disorganised and chaotic December of comping since I started a decade ago. Instead I spent time making igloos and Christmas grotto's in my spare bedroom, crafting cardboard snowmen, visiting what feels like 1700 different Santa's with Jacob and watching him in his first ever nativity at school and it was lovely.

My stats on Competition Database say I entered on average 16 competitions per day on there and my advent folder held about 40 that I would check each day although did skip a lot of comps that I wasn't interested in and then I used the MSE Advent Over £100 thread and Instagram for my comps this December. Previous years would see me trying to enter hundreds upon hundreds every day but I had neither the time, energy nor inclination this year. However being picky served me well..... 

My first win of the month was won via a friend who ran a Facebook Competition and was for an Aldi Parsnip soft toy, it's rather strange looking but J loves it! 

Anybody who does advent competitions has probably got it ticked off that they won with In The Night Garden. I've previously won a cd, fridge magnets and a calendar and this years offering was a 'book' which is a term I use loosely as I think it was 8 pages and more like a leaflet. 

My first proper advent win of the year was some Konditor and Cook Mince Pies for the hubby which I won on Facebook. 

Viners were running their advent competitions on Facebook and I made sure to enter as I love their items. I have pans and cutlery that I got for Christmas a couple of years ago that I love (I asked for them specifically they weren't given as a duff present) and I was really pleased to win a set of their Silver Serving plates. There are 6 plates in total and they are worth £96. I've given a pair to my gran but kept four for myself. 

My first Instagram win of the month was a selection of facemasks and some charcoal toothpaste which I'm slightly scared of so haven't tried yet but have heard great things. 

Miffy run regular competitions on their social media and I won some audiobooks for J from one of their Facebook posts. 

I was lucky to win early on with the brushworksuk advent because by the end of the comp they were asking for 10+ tags. I won a Kabuki make up brush. 

I was really pleased to win Sherlock Gnomes DVD with Muddy Puddles on Facebook. There is nothing better than a family film day on the sofa snuggled under blankets. 

Our first children's mag win of the month was from Animals and You and is a Smooshins Surprise Playset where you make your own Smooshins which are like squidgy doll type things - I'm really selling this aren't I? Anyhow they are quite popular with kids although parents probably just think uh! 

I received an eyeshadow rainbow pallet from Glittertubes - so many pretty colours! 

J received a sweep puppet through the post from a children's mag. Like last month it said about his masterpiece being published but it turns out it's actually from an Eagle Eye competition and the certificates are just generic. 

The moo collective gave away loads of cookie cutters on Instagram and we won one. 

We as a family love Lego so I was really pleased to win with Lego Watches on Instagram. We won a Jurassic World Lego watch and a Lego Santa bauble which is super cute! 

Our next kids mag win was a Unicorn Feisty Pet from an entry form competition. They are strange little things. We got the unicorn who looks all cute then seriously peed off haha. 

Amongst Lego other loves of mine include Harry Potter and Itty Bitty's so I was really pleased to have a win which combines the two and receive a Dumbledore Itty Bitty. Who is currently living on my fireplace with my other Harry Potter Itty Bitty's that my hubby bought me :) 

Last year I won an advent prize with Discoveration's for a family pass to Thackeray Medical Museum and this year I won the same prize with the same company again. I wonder if they run it next year I can score a hattrick?

I received a parcel in J's name which contained a Power Rangers Lion Morph, there was no letter to say where it was from but after searching I found it was from an entry form we sent to Kraze magazine! 

My next prize gave me a bit of a chuckle. After a lot of nagging the hubby just wouldn't go get the Christmas Tree down from the loft for me, and knowing full well I can't/won't go up he thought he had gotten away with it. Till I won a new Christmas tree from the Fireplace World Advent which came in 48 hours and was put up whilst he was at work.... I wonder if I can work similar magic with other things I need his help with? 

Another Christmas item I won on Instagram was this lovely cushion as modelled by SnuggleBuddy Bear. 

A couple of small wins of fake tan, a star wars keyring, posh hand cream and fancy notelets from Instagram competitions. 

I won a fab selection of different chocolate bars, and small gift items from Chez Maxima's 12 days of Christmas blog competition. I put a lot of the chocolate bars in a Chocolate hamper I made my grandad for Christmas. 

We have been talking about redoing J's bedroom for a while and he really wants a bed with a slide and a den underneath and a tent over the top. I'd seen a space themed dream tent in Smyths which I liked the look of as it goes with the Space theme he has on one of his walls I spotted a low entry competition for one on Instagram and was made up to receive a message a few days later saying we had won! Although we haven't got the new bed yet I've put the tent on his current bed and he loves it. 

I won two local hamper competitions in December. One was a Christmas Eve hamper which had a minion toy, loads of sweets, pens, pencils and other art stuff inside and the other was a hamper from a local posh food place that had yummy biscuits, relish, cheese, gin etc inside. I do love a good hamper! Especially when they come in boxes/baskets that can be re-used.

Lands End were running an hourly comp over all their platforms to win an item of their children's clothing and they pick a winner per hour per platform. I noticed twitter was quite low entry and was lucky enough to win a fab top for J. 

After purchasing some bottles of Oasis at the Co-Op after a post on the Lucky Learners Facebook group I was pleased to win 2 pairs of Cinema tickets for our local cinema. There are some fab films due out that I can't wait to go see! 

Speaking of films I had wanted to go see Christopher Robin at the cinema but it wasn't Ant's kind of film so I'm really pleased to have won a copy on twitter from 110% Gaming as it means me and J can watch it when he's not in. 

My next 10 wins were all from Instagram - 
3 Paddy Wax Christmas candles 
A Latest In Beauty Subscription Box
A Playmais Farm House from DKL Toys
A Teddy from STN Airport (you have to add a screenshot of their post to your stories and they always send you a heart emoji in reply and I was losing the will to live the amount of hearts they sent before I won lol) 
A Christmas Stamp
A bundle of children's books
A Teddy Mountain UK Candy Dog Kit 
Love Honey bundle from CoppafeelMCR
An advent prize from WeBuyAnyCar 
£50 Love2Shop voucher

My last few wins of the month (and year) were a lovely bathroom set from We Soak on twitter, a £25 cinema voucher for a local cinema and a digital copy of the new Crash Bandicoot game for the PS4. 

A total of 44 wins and a very successful end to the year! 

I'm not sure of the exact value as some prizes haven't arrived yet as they were won late on so I'm not sure of the exact value. I've also not managed to add a pie chart but will hopefully come back to add that later. 

I hope December has been fabulous for you and you all have a brilliant 2019! 


You can see my recap for the whole of 2018 here.

What I won in November.

So it's now December, the Advents are upon us and Christmas is near. 

November was spent trying to get ahead to the best of my abilities to try and lessen the mania and stress that Advent's can bring. I think I did pretty well.

I had a message on Instagram on the 1st of the month to say that although I hadn't won the main prize with my Harry Potter pumpkin they'd like to send me a runner up prize of some Tiffin which was rather yummy. 

My 2nd win of the month was also from Instagram, I've really put a lot of effort into going back on there again. This was a tub of regenerating stem cell cream that costs £95 to buy! I've given it to my nan as she loves her lotions and potions. 

We've tried to do a few more effort comps recently and one was with Tetra where they asked your child to colour in a picture to win a 'My First Aquarium' on further inspection the tank wouldn't have been suitable for us at all so I'm glad we didn't win but we did win a runners up of an Activity Book. 

A Sooty DVD was won from Fun To Learn on Facebook and was a simple comment and like competition.

Our first children's mag win of the month was a rather fantastic Spiderman Go-Kart from the Beano. It's been hidden for J for Christmas and I can't wait to see his face when he opens it. 

Staedtler run regular competitions on their facebook and we won some funky glittery crayons from them. 

I also received a surprise win of Noisy Animals although I think it may have been from Primary Times. 

Another win with our Harry Potter pumpkin picture for a £20 Amazon voucher which added to the £100 from last month helped to buy a few Christmas presents. 

4711 run regular competitions on their social media accounts and I won their full range. It smells really nice and is unisex too which is great. 

I got notification that I'd won a runner up prize of some Aura Oil with our pumpkin again. I was hoping for the main prize which was a little Black Cube Burner but was happy they appreciated our efforts anyway. 

One win which I'm really pleased with is 10 Party bags from Oglee Poglee they aren't your typical plastic filled party bags but individual themed craft packs. I've chosen 10 different themes and they are due to be delivered on the 15th December just in time for the Christmas holidays to give us some activities to do. 

This month I seem to have done quite well with wins for me and somebody else I tagged. 

The first one was a pair of fit flops sneakers for me and a pair for my friend Rebecca. I've got mine for my gran for Christmas. 

I won a Rocks Off Bundle with Bondara on Instagram.....

Directions hair dye chose me as their Freebie Friday winner so I got some Rose Red hair dye which I can't wait to colour my hair with as I used to have that colour about 8 years ago and loved it! 

Mega Mag chose us as a winner of March of the Penguins DVDs. 

I won a fabulous book on Instagram from jimek_draws about Superheroes and drawing your own. It's a great book and you should definitely check him out. 

The next up of a prize for me and someone else was from Regatta. I won 2 jackets of my choice and tickets for ice-skating at the NHM. I got me and hubby a jacket each and my friend will be making use of the ice-skating tickets as I struggle to stay up right on land never mind ice. It's strange to have a jacket, I haven't owned a coat in about 5 years.

I won the entire collection of Nanogen products on Instagram which is perfect for me as after having an operation in 2016 my hair started to fall out and this stuff is supposed to help hair regrowth and thicken so I'd love to see how it goes. 

I won a personalised cake from SpongeCakesLtd on Instagram I got a Christmas picture of Jake put on it and it's cute. We haven't eaten it yet though so I don't know how it tastes. 

Another Instagram win is a massive map for J's room. It's from Underfoote and ArchiboldClutterbuck and is perfect as my Grandparents are going to Oz for several months soon so we will be able to look and see where they are. 

A lot of people on the Lucky Learners Facebook group have posted about a competition with Pioneer Paper. It's supposed to be a purchase comp but they have the option for a free code and I won a L'Oreal Gift Set with them. 

I have been trying to win some Grinch goodies for J but only managed a shopping bag and some popcorn so far. 

I received a voucher for a Treat Box from Patisserie Valerie which we are hoping to get this weekend. 

On the Wednesday I was talking about Children's Magazine wins with a comping friend and I said we had only had the one this month which is unusual for us. 
Then on the Thursday some Silly Squeak toys arrived that make silly noises and play different music. J loves them but they are driving me potty!
On Friday some Christmas Blindbags arrived from one mag for a picture J apparently sent in but I don't remember sending in so have to wait a month till the mag is in store. 
On Saturday we received a Puppy Pals Playset which is from one of two magazines but didn't have a note in. 

I certainly made up for the lack of Children's Mag wins. I'm thinking of mentioning tv's or cash next haha! 

I received an email on Monday to let me know I had won a Drone in a Black Friday competition which will be getting wrapped up for the Hubby for Christmas! 

I also won 3 Klean Kanteen bottles and some reusable straws on an Instagram competition. I've wanted a Klean Kanteen for so long as we always end up buying drinks when we go out so this will hopefully help us be less wasteful. 

I received a chocolate bar from Cadburys from their Secret Santa twitter competition. 

My phone decided to crash on Monday night and needed plugging in to the laptop and restoring. My email account has a filter on to put winning emails into a folder but for some reason once my phone had revived itself I decided to do a search for 'winner' and it showed I won a Geomag Colours set from a blog so maybe my phones brainfart did me a favour! 

I've been desperately trying to win an advent calendar for me after winning J a LEGO one last month and I managed it at the end of the month winning not just a No 7 Advent Calendar for me but one for my friend too! 

My last two wins of the month were some posh ladies socks on twitter and a bundle of Zimpli products from Instagram including slime, gelli baff, snoballs and much more so brilliant for sensory play!

I haven't gotten around to adding pictures or a pie chart but will come back to it, I'm posting this for reference mainly before I forget because it's been typed up and sat in my drafts for a month!

Total prizes won: 33
RRP of prizes £1262

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