I won a car!


I’ve been meaning to write this post for a long, long time, as many of you have asked about the car I won a couple of years ago.  Now you finally get to hear the story!

Before I started a blog, I was an avid “sweeper”.  I entered online sweepstakes each and every day.  It was quite lucrative, really, and the thrill of winning was such a rush.  I won some fantastic prizes, including oodles of gift cards {one was a $1,000 Merry Maids gift card from O’Cedar flooring and $200 AT & T gift card}. At any given time, I had stacks and stacks of gift cards on hand.  Other large things I won were a $500 check from Reader’s Digest, a Home Theater system from Marlboro, another $1,000 check from Kewl Cash, Krups toaster, Le Creuset 3-piece cookware set, lots of DVD’s, makeup, and the list goes on and on and on. It was incredible.

If you don’t know how sweepstakes work, there are different types.  There are ones you can enter only one time, some you can enter daily, some weekly, monthly, etc.  Then there are instant wins.  Instant wins allow you to win right then and there – right on your screen.  I won lots of prizes from these as well.  Each instant win game usually has a grand prize that is drawn at the conclusion of the promotion.  Most of these sweepstakes are run by a certain judging agency, so I got familiar with their standard “Congratulations – you are the winner of a $25 Best Buy gift card” {or whatever} email.

Upon returning from Harrah’s South Lake Tahoe {where I won $7,500 on a slot machine!}, I was going through my email, and I saw one from this judging agency, with the subject line stating the instant win sweepstakes name – and that I was a winner.  I thought to myself, “Hmmm, I don’t  remember winning that”.  I opened the email and it had their standard opening, “You are the winner of a TOYOTA CAMRY”.  Huh? What?

Now my husband was used to me getting excited when I won something, as I would promptly announce it when I received a winning email.  On this day, he was downstairs, and I yelled down the stairs, “Honey – guess what I won?”  He gave me his standard reply, “What, Sweetheart?”.  Me – barely containing my excitement, “A CAR!!”.  “A what???”.  I ran downstairs and he of course was slightly skeptical {okay, really skeptical}, asking if I was sure.  I told him I recognized the type of email, and yes, it was for real!  I won from Safeco Insurance!

Over the next few days, I went to the dealership to look around, and finally settled for the car I wanted.  The win was for a standard Camry, but hubs said that since we were getting a new car, it might as well have everything I want on it. So we paid a little extra and got all the bells and whistles.  I chose the sports edition because…well, because that’s how I roll.  I got leather seats in it, so it took them a couple extra days to put those in, and the wait seemed like forever.

I finally picked her up and fell immediately in love.  Here she is:

I won a car,winning a car,

My baby at the dealership

Our trip to Oregon

So now you know the story!  I love, love, love this car.  She is sleek, comfortable and oh so fast!


About Author

Jennifer Regan is the owner/editor-in-chief of Eighty MPH Mom, a family-friendly blog. She is active in Brand Ambassadorships and campaigns, and is active in social media, helping brands promote!


  1. Karla Sceviour on

    wow,,omg,,you are soo lucky!! Congrats on all your wins! lol..I get excited if I win a shirt,dvd,or tub of shortening,etc..lolol..haha.wish I could be that lucky!! Well,congrats to you! 😉

  2. Oh WOW! That is too neat!! You are awesome!

    Speaking of winning… I have one more day on my Family DVD giveaway at my place. Come on by if you need a new family-friendly flicker-show!


  3. Wow, that is fantastic!! I wouldn’t be able to pay the taxes on all those prizes. 🙁 We went to Vegas for a last hurrah before our daughter was born, and I won $1,250 on a slot machine. Stunk to pay those taxes! All in all though, we won enough on roulette to pay cash for our ENTIRE hotel bill, food and all, and went home with the $ we came with, LOL!

    You have some serious luck, I want it to rub off on me! Do you have a favorite site where you search for sweeps? Do you have a strategy? Which sweeps do you prefer to enter (ending soon, unlimited entries, few entries etc.?)

    Just wondering! 🙂

    • Jennifer-admin on

      Yeah taxes aren’t great, but I figured it’s a new car, and I just had to take advantage of it 🙂 Congrats on your Vegas trip!

      I used Sweepstakes Advantage. I found their site to be the easiest to navigate and keep track of everything. It’s free too. I don’t have a favorite type really. I really enjoyed the instant wins (when they were letting me win :), but one time entries are really good too. The Redbook and Lucky Mag sweeps give out LOTS of prizes too, so I always entered those, usually for makeup and such.

      • Our vegas trip was 6 years ago, LOL! That was the last vacation we took really.

        Sweeps advantage looks good, I list my giveaways there. I will have to sit down and start sweeps hunting!

  4. Great story! Could you share how much time each day you dedicated to sweeping? Also, do you think it’s harder to win stuff these days because more people are sweeping?

    I did the big sweeps for about a year and only one a small toy. I wasn’t very aggressive in my sweeping, though. I entered now and then and didn’t focus on entering daily. Once I started entering blog giveaways, I noticed the odds were WAY better so I stick to blogs now.

    Winning a car is awesome! Congrats!

    • Jennifer-admin on

      I spent probably 4 hours a day doing it…sometimes more. The wins were becoming less and less, and that is when I started entering blog giveaways, then started my own blog! I do believe that it’s harder to win now, because of the economy (and fewer prizes), and also more people entering sweeps. Odds are MUCH better on blog giveaways!

  5. Wow, nice win, lucky you.

    I still enter sweeps but I’ve never won anything so grand… yet. But, I’m planning on being the winner of the HGTV Urban Oasis 2010 Giveaway that’s ending soon 😉

  6. Lauralee Hensley on

    How awesome for you. I would have been more than yelling down the stairs, I probably would have run up and down them a few times too.
    Your car looks very pretty. I think it was a good idea to pay the extra and have what you wanted on it, that way it seems even more personal and special.

  7. HOLY S@%& WOMAN!

    I bow down to you, my fellow sweeper *bows*

    The biggest thing I’ve won so far was the trip to BlogHer this year and it was DEFINITELY a rush xD Although, my parents were as skeptical as your hubby when I got the ‘Congratulations’ email.

    I know this is a few years late, but congratulations on your AMAZING win!!

  8. That’s fantastic! I’ve been sweeping since 2001! I’ve won tons of trips (some we were able to negotiate into cash – who hoo!), a diamond necklace, gift cards, a nice crib but never a car. It’s my goal to win a car one day! Congrats! My sweeping time has declined considerably since I started blogging, though 🙂

    • Jennifer-admin on

      LOL one thing I never won was a vacation! A friend of mine who entered only a few sweeps actually one two trips! I haven’t been entering much lately, but I really want to start again 🙂

      • Three years ago when I was pregnant with Lily I won 5 trips – most to various places in Europe for 3 night stints. Luckily my husband negotiated cash options, and one I had to forfeit because they insisted I travel and there was no way I could leave a newborm to fly to Argentina. Earlier this year I won a trip for 6 to Disney and the sponsor is giving us an extra year to take it so we’ll go when Lily’s closer to 4.

        Still crossing my fingers for the car, though 🙂 Or how about the HGTV Dreamhouse? 😉

  9. Debbie Stanton on

    WOW!!! I am so in awe of everything you won – and especially the car!!! I can relate to the skeptical hubster as mine never gets as excited as me when i win a little something and it’s rarely something we actually need and could use!! Unlike your car!! My hat is off to you and i feel like I should bow down everytime I open up your blog. : )

  10. I love getting emails that I won something hehe. better yet when the come to the door! It means it’s something I got that I don’t have to blog about lol. Congrats!

  11. THAT, is really. REALLY cool! ;D

  12. That is so awesome. As a fellow sweeper there is one of the things I want to win one day!! Taxes aren’t great but I always look at it as a discount. It is a new car and that is awesome. COngrats and I hope you keep winning!!!! WOO!

    p.s. I love Sweepstakes Advantage as well!

  13. Whoa. I didn’t think people really won these things. I probably would have junked the mail thinking it was a scam, lol. Makes me wish I showed Ed McMahon some love back in the day. Over the years I’ve probably thrown away a total of eight billion dollars.


    • Jennifer-admin on

      LOL no, we are super happy with our insurance company, but if we ever change, I will definitely check them out 🙂

  14. Wow you are one lucky girl! That is fantastic! Maybe I should quit blogging and become a sweeper. I must say though I am so shocked they announce that in an email. Many would delete as spam.

    • Jennifer-admin on

      I know! I figured if I ever won something that big, they would call me! Or at least the email wouldn’t look so “run of the mill”. I quite sweeping to become a blogger LOL. The wins had slowed down so much. Maybe it’s time to revisit my sweeping days 🙂

    • Jennifer-admin on

      I used Sweepstakes Advantage to find mine. It’s super easy to keep track of ones you’ve entered, ones that you can enter daily, etc. It can happen!

  15. Wow that’s probably about as awesome of a win as it was if you had won the lottery lol! That’s definitely a beautiful car and what a neat story behind it! Now if I could just win SOMETHING from the contests I enter I’d be a happy person ha!

  16. Wow…that IS an incredible story! And I have never known anyone who picked up THAT much cash at a casino! You are one LUCKY lady! so…I have to ask if you put special plates on her? She is a beaut!

    Me…I get excited about winning vanilla! For real! What would I do if I won a car? Faint dead away!

    • Jennifer-admin on

      LOL you never know! So don’t faint dead away okay? I didn’t put special plates on her, but I should! That is an excellent idea. Maybe I’ll do a blog post asking what it should say.

  17. Janice Cooper on

    Wow love reading about all your wins. How exciting! You are my inspiration! I would love to win a car and we need a car so bad. Congratulations on all your wins. Your car is gorgeous. What a blessing!!!

  18. Wow! I always wondered if anyone actually won those sweepstakes because you never hear about the winners. This has inspired me to start entering daily!! Great post!!

  19. Oh wow – I just saw this and that’s amazing! Really cool – it gives everyone hope that ‘real’ people actually win these sweepstakes!

  20. I am always so skeptical about giveaways outside of the blogs. I think if their not real people on the other end that it’s a scam. Can you share any tips on this subject?

    Thanks Lisa

    sibabe64 at ptd dot net

  21. JulieCutshaw on

    that’s awesome! I love to enter sweeps too & blogs of course. The biggest thing I won was an artic kat ATV and the taxes on it was $800 but worth it. I love that cabin in the picture behind your sweet ride! I would love to win a log cabin, now that would be sweet!! Thanks for all the great blog post you share 🙂

    • Oh congrats on your big win – that is fantastic!! I love that cabin too – that is our friends house in Oregon (well their across the street neighbors). That WOULD be cool to win a cabin though!

  22. I know your excitement. I got into sweeping in 1980 when it was only mail in and radio station call- ins.
    Stamps were only 10 cents back then. I got into it with the dream of winning a car.
    I didn’t actually win one until my 25th yr. sweeping anniversary, but it was an awesome win. It was a truck done by GAS who did vehicles for the show Pimp My Ride. The truck was valued at 65K and on top of that they gave me 12K in cash to offset the taxes.

  23. Congrats on winning the car!! Do you mind sharing how you’re able to win, win and win again? I have spent many and sometimes all the hours in a day for 5yrs+ and not won near what you have won. The best I’ve done is a dishwasher and a autographed hockey jersey/game tickets. I’m not into sports and I already have a dishwasher that I don’t use. I would appreciate anyone’s advise!!!

    • Thanks! Honestly, my wins really started tapering off about 5 years ago, and I don’t enter very often anymore. There was no real secret, except to enter a bunch and enter often (and only enter those that are legitimate brands – no surveys, etc.). I hope your luck improves! Maybe I should start entering again, I really miss winning!

  24. Becky VanGinkel on

    Wow!! So awesome!! In my free time I enter sweepstakes and play IWG’s and whatnot.. I won $10,000 from Febreze a couple years ago!! That’s the biggest win I’ve had.. and I won a $3,299 Diamond Ring from Helzberg Jewelers this Valentines Day.. i absolutely LOVE it.. but I haven’t had any time lately.. my husband works out of state and it’s me and the 3 kiddos ages 10, 4, and 15 months so they keep me pretty busy! I can’t wait for the day that I can enter enter enter 🙂 Congrats again on the car!!!!

    [email protected]

  25. I just started doing the sweepstakes and giveaways and I have won several times already but nothing like that! I would love a new car or some appliances or hey how about a home makeover! Give me some of that luck!!!

  26. That is awesome! Im sure you know a lot about sweeps so I hope you can help with a question I have. I enter a lot of sweepstakes and was wondering , how do they let you know if you win ? I forget to pay my phone bill a lot and it gets shut off for a couple of hours or a day, do they try different ways if they cant call you? Thanks for your help!

  27. Oh Yeah! Those emails are the BEST!!!!
    A little over a year ago I won an RV in the Elevate Your Tailgate sweeps. Kept if for a year, travelled…then had to sell to pay taxes of ten K. I still keep entering everything today anyways. Fun hobby!

  28. Venaswearengin on

    I hope I win a car could I really need one bad I’m pary for this two happen for me I never own anything in my life I do not have money to buy a car I been try for a long time never give up

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