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Yes, I am alive

Hey everyone!

Just popping in for a quick update. As some of you may have noticed I do reply to comments but new content has been nowhere to be seen. Sorry!

  1. Over the past several semesters (hint, hint) I have been taking classes at the local community college – Java, Advanced Java and now C++ and Intro to Database – to expand my skillset and stay relevant. Plus, computer programming is very interesting to me and Wallet Engineerette has a Computer Science degree. Java was a wild success, but a lot of work! Consequently, that is why I have not been here to hang out with all the awesome fans.
  2. You may have seen some mentions of The Escaped One who escaped the rat race of 40 hour per week corporate life and is now retired. He made his goal and retired on his 35th birthday. He built a tiny house and will be featured on HGTV. Apparently I am to credit with his retirement!  He will be taking up residence on his permanent plot of personal land this spring and I hope to see him before he stops by for a day. He is the hero we need!
  3. We are in the process of buying an older, used minivan (think Honda Odyssey) or cargo/conversion van. Wallet Engineerette and I plan to take out the middle and rear seats leaving only the front seats. We have had some fun adventures camping in the rain and wind here in Colorado… Then we will convert the rear to a mini camper like The Grove Guy. There’s about 90″ of length in a van and I am 73″ tall so creativity will be key. I saw a bitching design for a futon bed that folds hamburger style instead of hotdog style (check the link above)!
  4. I will be taking computer classes through December 2017 (C++, Python, Database) in addition to my Java.
  5. We took a nice visit to Pasadena, CA. Went down to Venice Beach as well.
  6. Investments are up, savings are stable. I have not bought anything lately. May sell CAT as the P/E is getting very high. Thinking about filling out my AFL position as P/E is still low – need yield > 2.5% though.
  7. Ran into Mr. Money Mustache at the local brewpub last month. He is doing well.
  8. February is Stout Month here in Colorado. I bet you are jealous!
  9. Almost finished the kitchen remodel – new floor, dishwasher, new laminate countertops, sink, faucet, new baseboard. Have to find special 2 3/4″ door pulls, though. The Escaped One will be stopping by to help tile the backsplash.


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Wallet Engineer #1


What’s in Wallet Engineer’s wallet?

Dear readers. Think about what’s in your wallet. What do you carry? Does it all need to be there? Are you missing anything? Let’s compare what’s in your wallet to what’s in Wallet Engineer’s wallet! This could be fun, but I doubt it because I’m not a good writer.

By Wallet Engineer


I have a “front pocket wallet”. frontpocketsmallIt looks like a lot that. It has two pockets on the front and two on the back.


What’s in Wallet Engineer’s wallet? (front)

Driver’s License

Yup. I carry my driver’s license front and center. With the amount of craft brew I drink I need it. Not a shock. driverslicenseVisa debit card from bank

I don’t use it often, but usually carry it as a backup to my main credit card.

Discover IT card

  • So far I love my Discover IT card.
  • 4.8 rating out of 15,000 reviews online.
  • 5% cash back for selected categories. Stuff you do actually use – gas, groceries, restaurants, movies). Changes every 3 months. Going into summer blockbuster season is Movie Theaters & Restaurants. During Christmas it’s Amazon and online retailers!
  • 1% cash back on everything else (Others have more, like CapitalOne Quicksilver)
  • FICO credit score (although many cards do this now.
  • No fee.
  • No foreign transaction fee!

U.S. Annual National Park Pass

AKA “America The Beautiful The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass”

Your annual pass covers entrance into all national parks, but does not cover other things like camping, tours, permits. In most cases ‘entrance’ refers to a single, private non-commercial motor vehicle. The exception is if the park charges per person then it only covers the card holder and 3 passengers. However, everywhere I have been is per vehicle so take your friends. Note: Children under the age of 16 are always free at National Parks!

We have used it at Rocky Mountain National Park – there is an entire lane for pass holders. It’s glorious.

We have also used it at Arches National Park near Moab, UT. No fast lane. Sat in line for about an hour on Saturday morning :'(.

Lastly – the pass can have two names on the back. (and only two). So you can lend it to your adult children, in-laws, etc. But only one other person. Non-transferable after that.


What’s in Wallet Engineer’s wallet? (back)

Cash: none

No cash today and usually I don’t carry any.

Often I hide some cash inside my wallet for emergencies. I used it for an emergency once and haven’t replaced it, it seems (just checked).

Car insurance card

Good to have. I also have a second one in the car itself.

Health insurance card

Good to have.

Periodic Table

What can I say, I’m a chemical engineer. It’s not laminated, top edge is quite torn up. Sorry noble gases! It’s useful, periodically.


HSA debit card

I usually carry this with me. I go to the doctor so infrequently that when I do go I don’t think to put my HSA card into my wallet which leads to a bunch of paperwork. HSA = Health Savings Account, the debit card allows me to pay medical bills directly from my HSA.


What was in Wallet Engineer’s wallets?

Some previous articles related to our credit card excursions.

My First Sign-Up Bonus

Credit Score over 700 in 7 months

One Time bonus Credit Cards

Ultime Credit Card Rewards Update


What’s in your wallet?