In honor of my daughter's 44th birthday, which is today, I thought some suggestions for birthday freebies and other deals would be fun. I partake of many of these myself; readers will enjoy them, too.
-- Dairy Queen -- Sign up for its Blizzard Fan Club (www.blizzardfanclub.com) and you'll receive a coupon for a free blizzard when you purchase a medium-size.
-- Eatdrinkdeals.com -- This site is a great clearinghouse that features up-to-date coupons. For example, dine at Chili's for $20 which includes one appetizer and two entrees.
-- LivingSocial.com -- One of my favorites, it offers local deals like spa sessions, restaurant deals, and just about everything else imaginable for cheap, cheap, cheap.
-- Red Robin -- Enroll in its eClub and get a free burger on your birthday.
-- Ruby Tuesday -- Go to www.rubytuesday.com, sign up, and pop a free burger, as well as other food and bar redemption offers during the year.
-- Bruster's -- If you're an ice cream lover as I am, sign up for its birthday program and receive a free scoop. The same goes true for Cold Stone Creamery and Baskin-Robbins (the latter also offers a discount on a birthday cake).
-- SixFlags.com -- Save up to 40 percent at the gate when you join its online club.
-- DSW Shoes -- A $5 certificate comes in handy for birthday shoes.
-- Victoria's Secret -- Receive either a $10-off coupon for in-store buying or an e-mailed coupon good for $10 off online during your birth month.
-- Starbucks -- If you have a My Starbucks Reward card, drink up on your birthday with a free coffee of your choice. In fact, the more you use your card, the more freebies you'll get.
-- IHOP -- Join its Pancake Revolution and you'll eat not once but three times when you sign up for its mailing list, on your birthday, and on your registration anniversary date.
-- Freeappaday.com -- If you log on daily, you'll get a different iPhone, iPad or Android App at no charge. While these normally cost 99 cents to $4, they're free for download for 24 hours only.
I could list on and on, but a better idea occurs. Go online to your favorite store, company, eatery, and so forth to see what each one offers to its admiring public. Happy hunting. (And Happy Valentine's Day to sweethearts everywhere.)
Tax Tip: According to my CPA expert, non-business energy property credit extends for one year. This credit pertains only to energy-saving home improvements, such as windows, insulation, and furnaces. However, pre-ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) limits apply, including the $200 window credit limit and the $500 overall credit limitation.
Ellen Phillips is a retired English teacher who has written two consumer-oriented books. Her Consumer Watch column appears on Saturdays in the Business section of the paper. E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.