Plastic Cards

Plastic Cards

Plastic cards, a make work program.

Hours of concentration were required to assess the gift card situation here. For instance, the $100 gift card, received as a bonus when the dishwasher was purchased, has a balance of $6.42 remaining. Attempts to use it as a partial payment have been made at over a dozen retail establishments. All attempts met with rejection. Getting this particular gift card out of the wallet requires a new strategy. It seems simple enough, just use the card for a purchase for $6.42, or less. This strategy demands arithmetical calculations, to add the sales tax to an item in order to hit the target price, or below. So much bother, and yet the card still sits there in my wallet, waiting patiently for me to get my act together.

And then there are the points cards for gasoline. They accumulate, sitting in a pile, identical but for the small code numbers on the back of the cards. Some are empty, some have discounts remaining on them. It takes a telephone call and a pad of stickies to get them sorted out. Eventually, with effort, they can be whittled down to just two discount cards, one for me, one for Attila; more work.

It was a relief to find that the McDonalds card was empty, no funds to spend. I can’t eat anything at McDonald’s anymore, they have warnings about cross-contamination of allergens in their offerings. Russian Roulette is not a game I enjoy playing.

There are still a few outstanding issues with cards, and it is very tempting just to toss them in the trash. Throwing a few dollars in the trash, however, is unthinkable in our household! Every penny counts. If we are going to throw money away we will do it for love or pleasure, but not convenience.

Walmart offers a photo print service. This morning I ordered a print of a photograph, just to assess the quality of their product. It is very simple to order online, and pick up the finished product the next day at the chosen Walmart store. It ended up that the photo was ready for pickup today, that was fast.

An interesting tool is a drain cleaner. A price comparison revealed shocking results! Our local Home Depot sells the cleaner for $2.88, and the first such product that comes up on the search at is $25.80. What a joke! did have some less expensive offerings, as low as $5.91, which is twice the price of the the one at Home Depot, with shipping to pay on top of that. prices are insane. We will wait until our next visit to Home Depot and pick one up at that time, there is no urgent need for it.

I spent time learning to cast the first stitches with the crochet hook today. It was easier than yesterday, but I can see that the tension is going to be an issue for me. I have yet to find a way to hold the yarn to get an even tension, and thereby an even stitch. I have tried some of the suggested methods that I found online, but I will have to keep trying. I don’t have fine motor control in my right hand, so it will take me some time to get this figured out, a work around will be found eventually. Practising was fun!

Worldly Distractions


Date: 5:00 PM EST Tuesday 28 February 2017
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: 8.7°C
Dew point: 2.3°C
Humidity: 64% Wind:
E 9 km/h
Visibility: 24 km


“Convinced myself, I seek not to convince.”
Edgar Allan Poe
1809 – 1849


  1. For tension, I wrap the yarn around my little finger and then up and in front of my 1st finger,just like she does in Bella Coco. There are some very different ways of holding the yarn as you will see if you watch more videos. I like to just go to a video and keep watching others listed down the right hand column – if I watch the entire video from start to finish, then go back and re-watch it when I have my yarn out, it helps a lot that way, rather than trying to do it along with the video the first time.

    There is another good tutor on youtube called “Mikey” with The Crochet Group I think it’s called. He does good tutorials as well.

  2. I too have frustration with the point and gift cards that accumulate.Like you, I just don’t feel good about throwing them away, even if I suspect there is very little left on them! I have five, that I’m going to resolve this month, after which they are going to be cut up and tossed. I’ll feel relieved, I’m sure!

  3. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    The only points card we have is for our grocery store. We’re very careful to not get into the trap of buying items just so we can accumulate points. It is nice when we can take $20 off our grocery bill, using the points.

    With gasoline we don’t do loyalty or store incentives. Around here those are geared to Shell or Esso, which are the most expensive gas companies around us. Since DH was a terminal manager for several oil/gas companies many years ago, he knows who gets the quality gas without charging the quality prices, so we end up getting our gas at one of those places. Usually, we pay about 8 cents per litre less than what Esso or Shell are charging.

  4. Bex, good suggestions. I did discover that trying to work along with a video just does not work, have to watch it through first, then go back. I will look for “Mikey” and watch a few of his videos too!

    The tension is the thing though, it is an essentail element, so I will keep going back to the drawing board until I have found something that works for me.

  5. Teri, we have the points cards and used them extensively when we commuted from the country house to Mist Cottage. For us, it was Petro Canada that had the cheapest fuel, so we have Petro Points cards, and have saved quite a bit that way. We don’t use nearly so much fuel now, so the cards are less of an advantage. We do the grocery points through Presidents Choice, and through Shoppers Drug Mart. We don’t buy items to gather points though, Attila has a whole system of buying items we use in quantity when the special points offers are on, and we not only get those points, but also the points from the credit card we use for the purchase. It adds up to a few hundred dollars a year, so for us it is worth it. If Attila didn’t take responsiblity for it though, it wouldn’t get done, not my thing!

    Are you able to share with us who has high quality fuel?

  6. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Our lesser name provider with good fuel is Ultramar. Over here, Petro Canada is the bad guy. They’re the ones always trying to push the prices even higher than the other name brand companies.

  7. Thanks Teri! Near the country house there was a lot of competition, so Petro Canada always led with the lowest price to draw the traffic in. We had to hit them at the right time, which luckily mostly coincided with our commute. There are Ultramar stations in this area, so there we are!

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