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Life And My Finances Gift Card Giveaway!!!

Hi LifeAndMyFinances readers!

This blog often helps you by:

  • simplifying complex personal finance situations
  • offering free tools to get you out of debt and win with your finances
  • providing free help for those of you that reach out to me by email

All that stuff is great…but you know what else is helpful??


Hahaha. As a way of saying thanks to all you readers, I figured it’d be nice to give away a few gift cards. I’m sure you don’t mind, right?

gift card giveaway

So here’s what we’re giving away this month:

  • $50 Visa gift card (1 of these)
  • $25 Amazon gift card (2 of these)
  • $25 Wal-Mart gift card (2 of these)

That’s a total of $150 given away this month! Nice!! So, you’ve got 5 chances to win and the rules of entry are super simple!

How to Enter the Giveaway for Your Chance to Win!

Here are the rules of entry:

  • Receive one (1) point by becoming a new subscriber to this site (subscribe here) – and be sure to verify your subscription via email, otherwise your entry doesn’t count.
  • Receive one (1) point by commenting below and telling me what you like most about Life And My Finances
  • Five different winners will be selected for these prizes (in other words, no one can win two prizes)
  • Entries are open from March 16th until midnight, March 23rd
  • Winners will be selected via and will be announced on Sunday, March 25th
  • Prizes will be sent as soon as I hear from the winners – and then you can spend your free money!! 😉

Best of luck everyone! Thanks again for being awesome!!



My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.


  1. What I love best about this site, it’s all the useful financial information. I’ve used it in my own financial life, and I love sharing it with all of my friends. Thank you for all your hard work, dedication, and always keeping your readers in mind!

    Keep up the great work!!

    • Thanks Tim!

  2. I love that you speak so freely about the debt from your divorce, practical tips that work in the real world, and that you got your happy ending.

  3. I love your variety of content and the applicability to my own finances. Love using the tools and doing the quizzes as well! You write as if you were talking to your friends which makes it easy to read. Keep up the great work!

  4. Nice length of posts. It’s great to see so much effort and not just in income reports. Thanks!

  5. I like the variety of topics you write about.

  6. What I like about this site is that it keeps me motivated and shows me that financial freedom can be obtained.

  7. I like the free tools, like the budget tracker. Sometimes it is hard to get started dealing with finances, so these help.

  8. I like your mindset and the posts that inspire me to think differently about wealth. It’s not about the flashy cars and houses, its about choices and my future! I recently re-read your article about buying a car. It really is true that used cars are the best choice for a financially savvy person. Thank you for the great content!

  9. I’m an email subscriber. I like your coupon clipping section.

  10. Your articles keep me sharp and thinking about the subject matter at hand.

  11. I like the honest advice you give outlining both pros and cons of various strategies for financial gain.

  12. I receive great financial advice here. I enjoy the positive, upbeat tone too.

  13. I am new to this site and what I found interesting was the poor versus the wealthy budget and the ability to compare my present budget to both. It really showed me where I need work.

  14. I love that you write quality articles every time you write. It’s clear that you put thought into your subject matter. I also love that you are debt free including your house. You actually live out the principles you write about. I particularly like that you buy rental properties with cash. My husband and I plan to do the same and were leaving from your experiences.

  15. The site is a reminder that a series of small choices over time can make a huge difference.

  16. Hi Derek, I am already a subscriber and I welcome this opportunity to thank you for the help you and your site have given me. I have a horribly high amount of credit card debt and when I received your email with the automated credit card payment system, I filled it out. Just having the information in front of me was so helpful, BUT… seeing how quickly my cards will be paid off was so uplifting and gave me hope. It does work and as soon as I am through paying my credit card balances, I am going to do the mortgage pay-off calculator. You have been a spirit lifter in my life and a sure way out of my debt. Thank you so much – stay well & be safe.

  17. Hi Derek, I have enjoyed many of the articles you have written on your blog. Especially ones on home buying as that is the goal I am currently working on. The guideline you gave in one of your articles regarding how much home to buy made deciding pretty easy. Two times your annual income and the payment makes sense. Thank you for sharing your ideas and experiences.

  18. Hi Derek,

    I am already a subscriber. But enjoy reading your posts about debt reduction strategies and creativemoney make opportunities. Thank you for doing what you do!

  19. I like the tools that you make available to the public, and that you write in a way that people feel like they can achieve FI by following a similar plan. Thanks for the advice, and looking forward to the next stuff!

  20. I am already a subsciber, and what I like best about your site, id you tell the truth, evn when it hurts! I particularly found interesting the “how much house you can afford article, very enlightening!”

    Thanks for the chance, if I will I will give the card to my daughter to spend for college expenses 😉

  21. I like hearing responsible financial tips. I think it helps me stay on track and is encouraging.

  22. What I love about this site is that it helps me take control of my finances by giving suggestions and tips. I really appreciate the tools. The retirement and college tools are very helpful.

  23. I used to subscribe to several finance sites, casually reading them and thinking their advice would be good IF I had money to invest to start with. Then I came across this site, and now it’s the only one I still read.

    You make everythng you write about simple to understand, and most importantly, your advice gives tips and goals that are both practical and acheivable by almost anyone. When I read your articles, I feel like “Well, if Derek can do it, maybe I can too.” Thanks to the things I have learned in the year or so I’ve been a subscriber, I have went from living paycheck to paycheck with no savings to having multiple income sources — some of which are passive now — and a savings account that just reached $5,000. I don’t have any credit card debt and am working on getting my student loans paid off (when they’ve been in one deferment after another for years)

    Thanks to you Derek, I no longer feel anxiety about my financial future. When anyone asks me how I’m managing to do these things, I point them dirctly to this blog. It’s a lifechanger.

  24. I love the financial advice, of course. I also like how you approach everything with a down to earth, yet positive attitude. There are lots of personal finance gurus who talk down to their audience, but you aren’t one of them. Thank you for all you do and keep up the great work!

  25. Two things I like are the variety of topics and that you respond to comments. That makes it seem more like a conversation.

  26. I look forward to reading your articles! You do a wonderful job explaining each concept in the simplest terms. Also, the links that you include in each article allows me to reference what you are sharing, immediately. Keep up the great work!

  27. I am 60 years old and got my first job when I was 54. Not your average fi person but I love reading all about it and do plan to retire in 6 years. Sites like yours have been so helpful to me in learning how to manage my finances. Keep up the good work.

  28. I love the financial advice!

  29. I really appreciate all the spreadsheets under Free Resources. They make an excellent PF starter toolkit!

  30. I love all the financial tips and tools. Your blog is interesting without being too lengthy, you don’t lose the reader’s interest due to overwhelming information. Keep up the good work, you are providing a great and much needed service!

  31. Your content is relatable to the “Average Joe” doing ordinary things extraordinary well. Between J Money & yourself, you guys have built a brand that illustrates the middle class can still create wealth without a six figure income

  32. I like the variety of different topics. They may not always be relevant to me but, I normally know someone who can benefit from the advice or topic. Keep up the great work!

  33. Your site gives me frequent financial inspiration and tips to keep my financial goals on track. Thanks.

  34. I like that you’re practical. There are a lot of sites out there that post content just to post crap. This site relates to real people and real lives.

  35. I am a new reader, and am currently loving binge reading previous posts!

  36. I love the practicality of your blog! You’ve touched on a variety of subjects that I had questions about. Thank you and keep on blogging!

  37. I love that the articles are not too long. You get right to the point, I learn it quickly and understand your teachings. I also absolutely love the Debt Snowball tool!!!

  38. I like how personal and candid you are with your readers. I feel like we are following you through a journey (and learning some great financial advice along the way).

  39. The different topics have appeal to just about anyone. I really like to read your articles and can’t help but chuckle to at times with the way you tell it.

  40. I like the real world advice on varying topics that you give, it helps to make me better informed on topics I might not have sought out on my own. And I’ve picked up a number of great tips I’ve been able to put into practice.

  41. The resources are super useful. And the honest way you write is super refreshing!! And already subscribe – but will be sending a few friends your way!!

  42. I like the vast array of topics and how they can apply to my life or others around me. I’ve already sent a few to some friends of mine that I know will help them out. Keep up the good work!

  43. I like the real world tools that are available for our use. Thank you so much. I am just getting started with all of this but what I have seen so far looks great. It looks like things I can really use.

  44. I like the variety of personal finance topics that you cover. Debt reduction, making extra income, how to set up a blog, etc. It’s a good variety.

  45. I enjoy your posts because they are easy to understand and you speak on many topics that are informative. I say keep them coming. Also, I’m glad your income went up.

  46. Hey Derek – I have been a subscriber for awhile now and I would say I enjoy the variety of your posts. They can be a little “off the wall” and I like that!

  47. Hi, Derek. I’ve been a subscriber for awhile. My wife handles our finances, but I know I need to stay informed. Your articles help with that. Love that they are understandable to beginners and I always feel I learn something.

  48. I like that your posts are easy to read and relevant. Great variety of content and I always learn something!

  49. Wow, I’m humbled all! I’m glad there’s such a variety of things that people enjoy!

  50. I am already a subscriber and I follow you on Facebook. I like reading about your rental property. I’ve been following the videos and your property is shaping up nicely.

  51. Well written articles that do a good job explaining the logic behind them.

  52. I really like your short and to the point articles. I especially relate to the ones about debt and buying cars, since they apply to me. I enjoy your clear writing style, it’s like talking to a friend who knows a lot about finance. Keep up the good work!

  53. I am a subscriber. I love the housing posts.

  54. I’m a longtime subscriber. Love that you are personable. I enjoy reading about your rental since I have a rental as well.

  55. I’m already a subscriber and what I like best about this site is reading about how you save money because it gives me and your readers tips on how I can do the same. I also like your updates on how you are earning money and how much you earn. Being honest with your readers takes guts and I appreciate that. Your real life examples help readers trust you more.

  56. I am new but I like your giveaway!

  57. I enjoy the content and your writing style.

  58. I like reading about how people manage money. I enjoy learning new ways to decrease debt and work toward never having debt again.

  59. I like that your content reaches out to all different kinds of people in all different financial situations!
    Thanks for asking!

  60. I love seeing your new tips on how to manage and save money in my email inbox every day!

  61. I appreciate the honesty and the practical tips as well as reminders that small things (both good and bad!) add up over time!

  62. I really like how you share your challenges with money, especially budgeting. I know it’s silly but it helps me feel better! #thestruggle

    • Ooo, that’s a good one. I’ll have to share some recent events in an upcoming post. Thanks for the reminder!!

  63. I just subscribed and am anxious to learn more about saving to eliminate my small debt.

  64. I absolutely love your already made debt snowball excel spreadsheet! What a great visual this is as my husband and I are working hard to become debt free!

  65. I’m new and did sign up but still haven’t gotten the confirmation from Feed Burner. Anyhow I like the focus on cutting costs, getting out of debt and staying there. A lot of good articles on here, information and tips. Thank you.

    • Hi Heidi! I just signed you up again, so look for the verification email. If it didn’t land in your inbox, maybe it’s in your junk email since it’s an automated message. Let me know!!

  66. I’ve been able to put what I’m learning on this site into good use. I started with the budget spreadsheet to figure out where I was on or off track, and since then I look forward to other tips like beginning to use Acorns and ending worrying about my credit score.

  67. I am a subscriber and I enjoy the breadth of financial topics you cover plus the depth to the information. Other financial sites often skim the information and I really feel your site gives me better content.

  68. I love that you have practical and realistic financial advice. Also love the videos you post of the house you bought.

  69. I love utilizing your financial tools you put on your blog.

  70. I am a current subscriber. I enjoy all of your articles and the variety posts of your guest authors. Each time I read a post on your blog I want to gather up all my extra spare change to get this dang mortgage paid off. #almostdebtfree

  71. I like the fact that you have very useful and helpful information on your site. I share with friends a lot. Finances always seem to come up when we get together and your tips always are appreciated! The economy seems so up and down these days. We try to be very positive. Thank you for your hard work to always help everyone!

    • You’re welcome! Thanks for the great comment!!

  72. Already subscribed; I appreciate the variety of topics and the resources available. I found your site by way of your debt snowball calculator. Great tool!

  73. Already a subscriber for awhile.

    I have loved that you commented back on every single one of my questions. The great things I learned like using Personal Capital and Wealthsimple.What brought me here initially though is your get out of debt story and how hardcore you were/are in getting out of debt. That is still truly inspiring to me.

  74. You inspire me to get out of debt, and I am very close- end of April 2018!!! I am paying my mortgage aggressively and have started investing as well. Participated in my company’s group savings match and currently contributing 10% on my own. You inspired me to be responsible with my money and honestly, I am obsessed about educating myself about personal finance since I started following you! And as how you always say; “don’t miss out on free money”, I’m throwing my name in the hat, in the hopes that I’ll win one of them 🙂

  75. Also, I have sent your blogs link to a lot of my friends! THANK YOU for making a difference in my life!!!

    • Wow, awesome! Thanks for sharing, Jane!

      • BTW, I actually started investing thru Wealthsimple. I took advantage of that free $50 you blogged a few weeks ago! I am learning a lot from you Sir! 🙂

        • Great!! They’ve been awesome for me, and I’m happy to promote them!

  76. I most enjoy your passive income posts. I’ve gotten a lot of great ideas and passed some on to friends and family.

    • Technically, you’re 17 minutes after the buzzer! Buuuuuuuut, I’ll let it slide this once. Your name’s in the hat for the gift cards!! Thanks for reading Cynthia!

  77. New subscriber!

  78. Love the tips on how to reduce debt

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