Now is the time of year when many of us would like to earn extra money. Whether it be to treat our family and friends, to treat ourselves, or just to take advantage of a time of year when jobs and money are more plentiful, there are plenty of opportunities for you to earn extra money. Here are a few to try:

Market Research Studies/Focus Groups: This is not a sure bet that you will qualify, but you will know after one phone call. Marketing research firms typically call or email to fill time slots for studies happening within the next week or two, and you are paid by check directly after leaving the room. I completed a study on soap for $75 last April at Schlesinger Associates here in Houston, as well as an online study for $100 in gift cards around the same time. Payment ranges from $50-$350 per study.

Babysitting Service on the Weekends: Specifically advertise for babysitting while parents go holiday shopping!

Part-Time, Seasonal Work: Pick up some shifts on the weekend for stores who need the extra help at the mall (are you particularly good at wrapping? I am not, but if so, malls and stores will employ you), Christmas tree lots, bookstores, farmer's markets with hayrides, waitress for catering companies, valet, or any other places where business picks up for just a few months out of the year. Look at commission-type jobs as well as you have a much better chance this time of year of making decent money.

House Sitting/Pet Sitting: For those who are traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday, offer your house sitting services.

Carpool: If you carpool for just November and December, you could pull in $50-$150 extra cash based upon your normal commuting gas consumption. Imagine how much you can bring in by carpooling every other month out of the year!

Advertise Your Skills on Craigslist: Can you paint emergency vehicle house numbers on the side of sidewalks? Are you great at writing resumes? Perhaps you professionally fix computers. Advertise it on Craigslist; you'd be surprised at how many hits you can get.

Teach a Class in the Evenings and/or Weekends: It is easier than ever to become a teacher of a skill or subject you possess. Places like Leisure Learning, LTD are everywhere across the US, and there are adults hungry to learn. You can teach computer skills/program skills, languages, cultures, sports, how to budget, cooking, etc. Don't be shy! If you can't find a local association that organizes everything, then put a sign up at a local library.

Sell Your Handmade Crafts: Many craft sales happen around this time of year, so rent a booth and sell what you are good at. This could be quilting, reindeer for the outdoors, scrapbooking…the demand for your goods is this time of year, and there is a real premium being placed on homemade gifts in the last several years.

Dog Walk: Let's face it: many people don't want to walk their dogs in the cold. Instead you can do it! Get several owners to sign up, and you could pull in some great cash.