A midwinter’s tale. (Okay, a digest.)

thThe snow is clean and new, the temperature is 18 degrees, daylight is increasing (we get 9 hours, 43 minutes today) and the annual winter carnival known as “Rondy” (short for the Anchorage Fur Rendezvous) is underway. When I lived here before, February was always the month when winter turned around. Still is, even though it’ll be months before we can garden.

The carnival includes a three-day dogsled race that starts and ends downtown. As I’ve noted before, Anchorage is the only city I know of that puts snow on the streets. And they’ll do it again on March 1, when the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race has its ceremonial start downtown.

Yep, it’s a weird place.

I haven’t posted anything particularly deep lately due to having first a virus and then a head cold (still got it, yay), and also having accepted a magazine assignment and been in negotiations with another magazine editor. The latter involved a long phone conversation and then sending a fairly lengthy outline on a very personal subject, only to be told this wasn’t specific enough: What did it feel like?


Why had I sent mostly facts and figures when what will actually sell the piece is the human interest angle? I blame Sudafed.

A big Swagbucks party  

The sixth anniversary of the Swagbucks rewards program is coming up, but you don’t have to bring a gift.

You may receive one, however: A $600 PayPal gift card will be awarded to 10 randomly chosen participants – but only if they RSVP to the party.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Sign up for Swagbucks if you’re not already a member. 
  • Old and new members alike should use this link to RSVP. At this point you’ll be assigned to a team for a one-day “challenge” on Feb. 25. (I’m on Team Red, if you care.)
  • You will get one entry into the PayPal giveaway for every 30 Swag Bucks you earn from through the end of the day on Feb. 23. Note: All bucks, including those from Swag Codes, will be counted toward that total.

Note: I post Swag Codes on the Surviving and Thriving Facebook page any time that I see them, so check there or the Swagbucks Facebook page from time to time during the day. card180

About those teams: Bonus points will be awarded for the collective earnings. But you can’t win if you don’t sign up, so be sure to RSVP with the above link if you want to take part. Think what that $600 could do for the bottom line.

Myself, I’m hoping to be on the winningest team because I want to build up my stash of Amazon gift cards (the only thing I ever order with my SBs). But good luck to all – and if you win one of those $600 PayPal cards, please come back and brag about it.

Meanwhile, at Money Talks News…

I’ve been a busy woman over at my day job. To wit:

How to find thousands of freebies is just what it sounds like: a whole lotta tips on getting gratis goodies. Have fun turning your mailbox into a piñata.

Why Grandma needs a credit card: Nope, it isn’t just so she can buy you stuff. This article takes a look at what site founder Stacy Johnson calls “the golden rules for credit in your golden years.” And yes, you do need credit after you retire because, well, life happens and also because credit history is factored into loan interest rates and insurance premiums. Of special concern is people (usually women) who have never had credit in their own names; in case of death or divorce, they could find themselves in trouble.

Is your savings account missing thousands of dollars? In other words, where’s all the money you “saved” through coupons, deal sites and rewards programs? The article explains why it’s not savings unless you save it, and offers some tips on how/why you should.

There’s no such thing as a free puppy is a primer on how to establish a pet emergency fund. Consider it self-insurance, but do consider it. Serious illness can come from out of nowhere and cost you big bucks. Bad enough to worry about your pet’s suffering without the nagging corollary of “How long will it take to pay off the $3k I just put on my credit card?”

(And no, you can’t use Grandma’s. That’s not why she got it

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  1. I’m also on Team Red. Go, Team, Go! ;o)

  2. I’m unusually grumpy about getting assigned to Team Pink. Go everyone..?

  3. I’m team PURPLE! And thank you for always posting about something to help the old wallet even if it is virtual!!!!!

  4. enjoythejourney

    I’m Team Pink, too. Revanche. Granted that statement isn’t exactly a warrior yell, but at least we’re in the game.

  5. As someone with old pets, I can definitely say that an emergency fund for your pets is a good idea. We spent $650 in one month for three different vet visits.

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