Vanilla Reloads Are Dead: What Now?

DSCF3121As many of you know, CVS stores recently decided to stop allowing customers to buy Vanilla Reloads with a credit card.  At first, I was disappointed because I literally have eight CVS stores within 5 minutes of my house, and all of them were Vanilla Reload goldmines.  On the other hand, life goes on.  Most good things do come to an end, and the fact that some people were buying 5K per day probably wasn’t helping matters.  The good thing is, I was only using Vanilla Reloads to meet the minimum spending requirement on a specific card.  Now that that’s done, I couldn’t care less about Vanilla Reloads.  Here’s why:  [Read more...]

My Cheap Las Vegas Vacation with Credit Card Rewards

Us with our BFFs in Mexico.....

Us with our BFFs in Mexico…..

As many of you know, I’m heading to Las Vegas with my husband and my best friends next month….and we’re stoked!

I know what you’re thinking.  Las Vegas is the epitome of consumerism and financial irresponsibility, and frugality writers who believe what they preach just don’t belong there.  But you’re wrong.  I do belong in Las Vegas.  Why?  Because I love people-watching.  I like having a gin-n-tonic or five and being able to carry them around in the street.  I also like gambling.  Sue me. [Read more...]

Europe for Cheap: How to Travel Abroad for $200

londonEveryone thinks you’re a baller when you can go to Europe just for the hell of it.  I mean, international travel is so darn expensive, am I right?  To start with, long-haul flights can be extremely costly.  And hotels?  Forget about it.  Fortunately, you don’t actually have to pay for your airfare -or even your hotel- if you don’t want to.  Yes, I’m serious, and to prove it, I’m totally going to Europe for less than $200 bucks this fall. Here’s how: [Read more...]

How Would You Spend $6,500?

uncle samAs many of you know, 2013 was my first year of self-employment.  And for the most part, it’s been awesome.  I made plenty of money, did all kinds of fun jobs, and had my writing featured in places like Lifehacker and Fox News.  It’s been epic.  But, despite all of my successes, I managed to roll out one epic fail.  It’s confession time, folks, and I share this shameful admission with a heavy heart.

So here it is…..*cue tears* [Read more...]

5 Things I Learned in Jamaica

club canadaLet me start this post with a moment of honesty: I wasn’t really all that excited to go to Jamaica.  I thought it would be fun and all, but I wasn’t really expecting to fall in love with it the way that I did.  I mean, we went to the Dominican Republic and Mexico last year and those two countries are hard to beat in beauty, culture, and value.  So, when we planned our recent trip to Runaway Bay, we mostly did so because our friends planned the trip and asked us to come along. [Read more...]

How Snowpocalypse Cost Us Almost $1,500

snowmygodIf you read my blog regularly, you’ve probably noticed that I wasn’t around much last week.  As I reported before, we went on a kid-free vacation to Runaway Bay, Jamaica, that was mostly paid for with credit card rewards.  I expected to have some access to wifi while we were there, and I did, but it was extremely slow and I wasn’t always able to return emails or schedule posts.  Anyway, I’m sorry that I was missing in action and I’m glad to report that we’re back….but only after a whole lotta dramaLet me explain. [Read more...]