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I have always wondered about the benefits of reward credit cards. I have friends who have the cash back ones and they are always telling me that over the course of a year, their regular credit card purchases they received enough back to pay for most of, if not all, their Christmas shopping.

My Mother is always travelling to places with the points she and her partner rack up. To be fair, he does a lot of travelling for work, so his card gets more of a work out than mine ever would.

Either way, I started to feel like I was missing out with my regular, no nothing card. So when I was offered a travel card, I decided to test it out for a year. Then VISA approached me and asked me to use my credit card in a new way. For everything. All the small little purchases you make every day. 100 of them. They call it Smallenfreuden.

I thought about it. After school I was in some wasteland of finances. Huge debt, trying to pay back too much of it at a time and running low on funds by the end of the month so you end up using credit cards even more. Tie that in with trying to start an adult life (read – work clothes, wedding, new home and all the expenses that come with it) and it was getting overwhelming. Then I began watching Till Debt Do Us Part religiously, and reading all of Gail Vaz-Oxlade’s books. I learned that my best weapon in keeping my finances under control was knowledge. Know what you were spending and on what. Oh Slice TV… what haven’t I learned from you.

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Fast forward a few years and I’m in a much better spot than I was. But I’m still watching my bottom line. So I was a bit hesitant to start using my card all the time, but I wanted those damn rewards so bad! I decided to give it a go. At least for the 100 purchases I was being asked for. The secret was to not spend any more than I normally would and make sure that I paid off my purchases in a timely manner. I actually found that putting as many purchases on one card, with one statement helped me see the big picture easier.

So… did it pay off? Did putting my daily tea break, my weekly *cough* daily *cough* LCBO visit, and all those little things really add up to something bigger? Actually yes! You’d be surprised how many little transactions you make in a day. And so far I racked up about 21,000 rewards points. Is that enough for me to get something super amazingly fantastic?? No. Not yet. But it will be. And way sooner than I expected.

This kind of money management isn’t for everyone. It might not be worth paying a fee for a card that can earn you rewards faster – that’s an individual choice. But if you are spending the money anyway, if you already have the card, it might be something to consider!

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Now that you have listened to me drone on and on… here is your chance to win $100 pre-paid credit card from VISA. They sponsored this post and it’s time to give a little of that to you! Entering is easy. Just leave a comment on this post telling me what you would save your reward points for if you could have anything! A trip?? A fancy new kitchen gadget?? Gift certificates? Don’t forget your email! I will pick a winner Friday at 2.

Good luck!

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Ok… it may not be a real word. But it should be. Smallenfreuden is a fun, made up word that refers to putting your tiny, every day purchases on your VISA card so that you can rack up points and use them for something awesome!

I plan to do just this for 100 purchases that I’ll be keeping you in the loop by tweeting and facebooking. At the end of the  100 purchases I’ll let you know how worthwhile this was. Basically I’m going to flaunt what I get with my credit card points. That’s not all… I’m also going to run a contest that you can enter to win $100 from VISA!

*waiting for the cheers to die down*

Exciting right?!?

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In the mean time I’m going to give you a chance to save some money on tickets to the Great Canadian Cheese Festival! The artisan cheese and fine foods festival that is in Prince Edward County on June 1 and 2. They say there is going to be more cheese than ever before! EVER BEFORE!!

So click here – HERE and use the promo code : CF13FRESH

Hope to see you there!

When I first heard about the contest that Sandbanks Winery in Prince Edward County was running, I didn’t want to tell anyone about it. Because I wanted to win. But, I decided that if I didn’t win, I wanted someone who reads my blog to – so now I’m spreading the word!!

Actually I’ve just been meaning to get this post out for weeks but, as usual, here I am weeks later. Better late than never!

Here’s how you enter:

1. Head to the LCBO and pick up a bottle of Love (a beautiful Cassis Aperitivo that is just the most lovely pink and sweet and yummy and oh my!).

2. Take a picture of you with your bottle of Love with a loved one!

3. Upload it to twitter with the hash tag #loveshots or you can post it to the Sandbanks Winery facebook page.

Here is an example that probably doesn’t count because my bottle of Love is empty and instead of a picture of me and the kid (your loved one can be anyone!) I have a drawing she did of her and I playing beach volleyball.

Love Shots

You could win a one night accommodation in Prince Edward County, dinner and a full tasting experience at Sandbanks!

Contest ends on February 28th. Good luck!! And if you win… you’ll consider taking me too right?!?!

I Say Random Things On Twitter…

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Instagram Photo Oddness...

#TBT to one of the best trips I have ever taken. We spent a week exploring Iceland. It was chilly, I got sick and there are some truly acquired tastes (think fermented shark and lambs head) but also some of the best soup you have ever had in your life. 
Every where you went, almost every #tourist attraction restaurant had the same two #soups. One with meat, the other was a cream of asparagus style. That was my go to. I loved that asparagus soup so much. It was everything you needed on a chilly day of waterfall visiting. 
They also have the most gorgeous sea #salts. I can't wait to go back. And in the more foreseeable future visit with @mizmulligan 
#iceland #wfd #comfortfood #spiceshop #spicesubscription #spiceofthemonth #vegancomfortfood #hygge #cozy #linkinbio #travel #wanderlust I have a love/hate relationship with Caraway. Great when it is added to blends as a background flavour, but too much of it has me turning up my nose. Sour and sweet, they are best paired with:

Breads (esp. Pumpernickel and Rye)
Sauerkraut
Pork
Potatoes
Goulash
German and Eastern European cuisine .
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#spiceshop #fresh #handblended #ottawaeats #german #wfd #bread #wfb #613 #supportlocal The beginnings of #inspiration. 
This month the theme for the subscription pack is #Vegan. When I landed on it I honestly had no idea where I was going to go with it. Normally the themes help provide direction but this time it was such a big idea when I sat down to get started. 
Then, the way it usually does, #life provided a bit of inspiration in the form of snowy weather, #cozy baby cuddles, fluffy blankets and #hygge. 
Today I'm finishing up three Vegan Comfort Food recipes. Warm, scrumptious and filling. Sign up today to have recipes and spices sent to your door.

#linkinbio #ottawaeats #spiceshop #fresh #handblended #glutenfree #spicebaby

Past Foodie Adventures…