Home > Archive: July, 2014

Archive for July, 2014

The Gift Cards Arrived!

July 31st, 2014 at 05:25 pm

Wow! That was super fast. The Southwest Rapids Rewards points I redeemed for gift cards on Monday arrived in the mail today.

I ended up redeeming 30K points for $300 worth of gift cards. I ordered $150 for Walmart, and $50 each for Lowe's, Kohl's and Amazon. It is a little ironic that I just spent $35 at Walmart yesterday! Could have used one of the gift cards if I had waited or they arrived earlier.

I still have $20K points I can redeem, but I'm still deciding whether to save for an airline ticket or cash in for another $200 in gift cards.

I am counting the gift cards as snowflakes. As I use the gift cards on items I would have spent cash on, I will send the cash to the mortgage.

Which gift card would you use first if these were yours? And what would you buy?

Applied and Approved

July 30th, 2014 at 09:26 pm

I applied for the Citi Thank You Preferred Visa today and was approved. After we spend $1500 we will get points that can be redeemed for gift cards or as I did in the past (and I hope is still available) a check made out to our mortgage company. Smile

I registered the girls for school today. Paid $130, plus bought a geometer ($4). I skipped buying the family activity pass, as I think we likely didn't get our money's worth last year. We will just pay as we go this year.

I also did a little spending at Walmart this morning. The main reason was to buy painter's tape (because I'm painting my laundry room tomorrow). But I also got two packages of underwear for the girls marked at less than $7 for 8 pairs, a pair of workout carpi's for me, and a package of sheet protectors that was on one daughter's school supply list. I think I spent about $35 there, but all on needs!

Do your public schools charge a registration fee? Do you know what a geometer is? Does school starting remind you to buy undergarments?

Seven Items for Sale

July 30th, 2014 at 03:00 am

Finally some progress on my SA Selling Challenge! I put six items up for sale on eBay tonight. I also listed a book on

I have quite a few more things to list, but I'm so glad I finally got the few up that I did. The rest will come later. Now I hope they sell. I did list many of them with the Buy It Now option, but one is an auction ending on Sunday.

Wish me luck!

Redeemed Gift Cards

July 29th, 2014 at 03:19 pm

I did end up redeeming $300 worth of gift cards with my Southwest Rapids Rewards. I can't remember the breakdown, but I got gift cards for Amazon, Walmart, Lowe's and Kohl's. I have another 20K+ points I can redeem for an airline ticket or gift cards, but I'm waiting to decide if I do want to use them for an airline ticket or not.

I also requested cancellation of my Southwest Visa from Chase. I had a negative balance on the card of just over $119, which was from a trip my husband took and had the charges reversed. (There's a blog post about it if you are really interested in those details.) Of course, I requested the funds be return to me, in addition to the annual fee.

I expect I will get a check and the gift cards in about a week or so. The check will get cash and then use the funds towards payment on another card. As I use the gift cards I will match the money that would have been spent with a payment to the mortgage.

I don't have any card rewards we are currently working on, so I expect I will apply for the Citi Thank You Preferred card I mentioned a little while back. My mailed offer is for 20,000 points after charging $1500 . The points are redeemable for gift cards and in the past I was able to redeem for a check made payable to our mortgage company, which is what I would prefer to do again today.

Today, I'm taking the girls shopping for school supplies. The needs for high school are not nearly as extensive as elementary in my opinion. Folders, paper, pens and pencils usually covers it. I will try to find a deal on tissues as those are a constant need it seems.

Are you school shopping for supplies or clothes yet? Have you applied for a new rewards credit card? Or redeemed any credit card rewards?

Last Day for Ooma Discount

July 29th, 2014 at 01:46 am

If anyone here was considering changing to Ooma, today is the last day to receive the unit for $99 after a $30 activation rebate.

I have already referred one person this time around! For me that means a $20 credit to my credit card in about six weeks. The Ooma can actually make you money when you refer people to the service.

If interested, use my

Text is referral code and Link is
referral code here to learn more.

Southwest Rewards Update & More Snowflakes

July 29th, 2014 at 01:07 am

Southwest has awarded my bonus points to my rewards account. I now have 52,683 points. I think my husband's account has about 600+ points that I may transfer over to round up to 53,000. That would mean I could redeem $525 worth of gift cards.

I may however not redeem all of my points. I have a friend that recently moved to the Houston area. I might want to go visit, but I'm not sure yet if that is really realistic schedule wise since we both have high school kids with busy schedules. The airfare is a better deal for the points than redeeming for gift cards. I'm still pondering, but I expect to redeem a little more than half the points for gift cards.

We received two surprise snowflake checks in the mail today. I love these types of snowflakes the most! My husband and I each got a check for $25.60 from a Trans Union class action settlement. We first requested to be part of the class action in September 2008!! That is not a typo. 2008. Crazy. But hey, I take my cash where I can get it. I've deposited the checks and I'm going to send the money to our mortgage pay down goal, which is where all snowflakes go to rest. Smile

Do you use Southwest rewards for airline tickets rather than gift cards? Did you receive a class action check lately?

Wells Fargo Amex Reward Received

July 26th, 2014 at 12:27 am

I love mail days with checks!!

We received three separate checks from Wells Fargo Rewards today adding up to $450. I deposited them online using my phone. Easy!!

That was quick. I think I requested those this past Sunday. I will make a extra principal payment to our Wells Fargo mortgage for the same $450. Smile

In other news, we are splurging on Garth Brooks tickets. We had a misunderstanding this morning so I wasn't online buying them when they went on sale. As a result we are buying from Stub Hub, and at a price OVER the face value. But the seats are pretty good and if the tickets were that price direct I would likely have paid it. I've always wanted to go and missed my chance the first time around. My husband and I are going with his coworker and his wife. Should be fun!!

Have you received a credit card reward recently? The Wells Fargo reward? Are you a Garth Brooks fan? Are you going to a concert this summer?

Posting Photos

July 24th, 2014 at 05:21 pm

I think there are a couple people who are having trouble posting photos. I tested it and was able to post photos, as you should be able to see in this post.

The basic idea is to write your post and select Save and Add Images. I do suggest copying the text your wrote before hitting publish in case you have timed out first.

After you select Save and Add Images, you will see a Choose File button appear. Once you select this button, you will be taken to the files on your computer to select the image you have already saved there to be opened into the entry.

After you select Open for the file you chose, you will see the name of the file you chose, next to the Choose File button. At this point you can Save and Publish or Save Draft. If usually hit draft if I'm going to have more than one image to insert. Either one works.

With either one you choose you will now see a preview of the image you want to select. Next to the image is a box with a number in it surrounded by

Once you have added all the images within your text, you can publish the entry.

You are actually publishing each time you add an image. I think this is a change from the past. I did notice today when adding all these images, that I needed to delete the preview after I had two images listed, otherwise it wouldn't let me add another image. NOT user friendly. When you look at the entry from the reader's point of view you will now see the images appear.

I hope this is helpful to some of you out there. If you are seeing different things than I'm showing you will want to contact Jeffrey or Nate for assistance!

Photos: Test

July 24th, 2014 at 04:50 pm

This is a test post for photos.

Getting Closer...and Potential Snowflakes

July 23rd, 2014 at 04:17 pm

I'm just slightly over $600 away from meeting my Roth IRA balance of $100K! Maybe today?! It helps that the market was up yesterday and my regular contribution posted.

I'm looking into a couple new snowflakes. I may apply for the Citi Thank You Preferred to get a $200 gift card bonus after spending $1500. I think it is available online, but I have a mailed offer, too. I have had this card in the past and obtained a bonus on it. I will need to read the fine print to double check that I would be eligible.

The other possibility is to open a US Bank Checking account to get $150. A direct deposit is one way to obtain the bonus; the other is to make three bill pay transactions. It's for first time customers and some of the checking accounts are free if you have a US Bank credit card, which I do. I also have to leave the account open for 180 days. That seems like forever, but it wouldn't be too hard to make it work.

At some point, I will likely apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card again. I know it has been over a year since I applied. My husband has done the offer twice since then, so it is my turn again. This one is actually the most lucrative offering 40,000 bonus points for spending $3000 in 3 months, plus an additional 5000 points for adding an authorized user. And that equates to $450 in cash. I will likely wait until later in the year for this one, with my fingers crossed the bonus goes up a little bit! Smile

There may be other great offers out there, and plenty of websites that share them if you want to go looking. These are the few that have caught my eye that I'm considering doing before the year is out. At this point I have stopped signing my husband up for offers since he has the job and is most likely the one to sign for any new mortgages that could be about a year away...or more. Right now we don't know.

What credit card or bank offers are you doing to get more cash in your wallet? Is your retirement account reaching a milestone of any kind?

Multiple Updates

July 22nd, 2014 at 01:47 pm

I seemed to have several updates today, so I'll just throw them all into one post.

Swagbucks posted my most recent $5 Amazon gift card. The points were actually accumulated through Bing Rewards. We just used $4.99 in Amazon gift cards this weekend. So with the new gift card that posted we are back to $10.01 in Amazon credit. That gift card money used does count as a snowflake!!

Yesterday, I requested a refund on my husband's government card, since we had a negative balance of $35.47. He overpaid the card over a month ago. I thought he would get it corrected but he forgot and paid the same amount he charged thus we still had money owed to us. It looks like it will go to our bank account, rather than a check.

I have made over $95 in various charges to our Southwest Rapids Rewards card in the last several days. I thought we had met the requirement for spending, but when my husband had a hotel charge reversed we were short by about $95. The statement closes around the 26th of the month, so we are now set to met the requirement and I expect be rewarded our 50,000 bonus points (equal to $500 in gift cards). I plan to close the card after I redeem the points. At the time of closing we will have a negative balance of over $100 because of the reversed hotel charge. I expect Southwest will mail the money along with a return of the $99 annual fee.

I did end up redeeming our Wells Fargo American Express Propel World card points in the form of checks. I expect those will arrive quickly! I will then deposit them to our account and make an extra mortgage payment. This is likely far quicker than the 4-6 weeks predicted to credit the points to our Wells Fargo mortgage directly.

I can feel that summer is winding down, and school preparations are ramping up. Registration materials have arrived along with bus schedule and school supply lists. We will owe $130 in registration fees next week. I hope to get a clear list of the items we need to buy for supplies in the next day or two. There are already great sales out there! We do check our stash and reuse items when we can. I know backpacks, lunch bags, padlocks, pencils, pens and even paper are covered. I plan to buy hand sanitizer and tissues to give to my sister who teaches kindergarten.

I have not listed anything new for sale on Craigslist or eBay yet. I did have a couple things on Craigslist earlier this month but was getting a lot of spam replies, so I pulled things down. I have things for eBay but honestly have not been motivated. I also don't like to list things and have them end when I'm out of town, which is a possibility soon. It will all happen eventually!

Are you already getting ready for kids to return to school? Have you redeemed any Swagbucks or listed on eBay? Have you earned any credit card rewards?