Guest post by Jami from An Oregon Cottage 
An iPad was something I dreamed about having–not only was it cool looking and I’d be able to use it as a reader and the Internet, but I’d be able to take it with me to work on my blog, An Oregon Cottage . However, our budget did not have a extra money in it for this extra “want.”
Luckily, my husband was on board and wanted to find a way to help me purchase an iPad (woot!). So last spring we added an “iPad” column to our budget and started putting any extra money we could come up with into it. We weren’t in a hurry and we didn’t think that we’d be able to order the iPad for probably six months or so, given our budget.
You can imagine how shocked we were when just three months after we created the budget category we were able to order the iPad! How? Here are some of the ways we raised the cash needed:
- Sold some items on Craigslist  (a weight bench; old stereo)
- Used Amazon gift cards I bought with Swagbucks  (When we learned that Amazon wouldn’t be selling the iPad 2, we bought food items and then transferred the cash from our food budget towards the iPad)
- Scoured the house for anything to sell on eBay –we found mirrors, candlesticks, computer items, yarn, vintage plates, and jewelry
- Used my six-month Google Adsense  check since I would be using the iPad for some blogging
Honestly, neither of us could believe how fast we were able to accumulate the cash when we put our minds to it. And you know what? We found it fun and exciting to work towards a goal and watch the total go up. There were lots of high-fives and dancing when we’d see we were getting closer to our goal. We’d plan and talk and dream together.
And when we were able to order it and it came in the mail, we just looked at it for awhile–it’s such a great feeling to reach a goal and know it was ours, free and clear. Was it worth it? Oh yes, I love my iPad! I use it everyday and I’m finding more and more things I can do with it. And my husband? I occasionally let him use it, too.
Jami is a wife, mother, and preschool teacher who blogs at An Oregon Cottage . She loves everything about a cottage, but especially what she calls “the cottage mentality” that puts people above things, celebrates imperfections, embraces simplicity, and finds joy in everyday life.