Pocket Your Favorite Web Pages

You know those websites you find that you’d love to come back to but don’t know how to save them? Those recipes you find that you wish your could save someplace without printing them? The articles you want to save for later but don’t know how mark them? The Pocket app, https://getpocket.com/en/about/?src=footer_v2, downloaded to your phone or tablet, will allow you to save the pages, categorize them search and re-read them.

From their site, “If something catches your interest, there’s probably something to it. With our save button for the internet and our award-winning Pocket app you can save anything from across the web in a distraction free space, for you to focus and let the ideas flow.”

I’ve been using the app for about a year and I can’t tell you how many times it has come in handy when I’m looking at recipes, or reading articles I want to read again, or refer to later. I used to bookmark pages but going back to them was difficult because they just ended up in a huge list that I never seemed to go back to. Either that or I would copy the website address to a document but it just ended up someplace on my computer that I didn’t go back to.

With the Pocket app I’m forever opening it up, looking at those recipes or articles. It syncs across my devices so what I saved on my phone is available on my tablet and visa-versa. It’s an amazing app and I highly recommend that you give it a try.


Cash In Those Old Visa Debit Cards for an Amazon Gift Card

Do you have old Visa Debit cards laying around with a few dollars on them? They’re usually not worth taking out to use so they lay in a drawer until they expire and then you throw them away.

Did you know that you can add them to your Amazon account and then use them to buy Amazon gift cards or reload your own gift card balance?

You’ll need to know the balance left on the card but you can usually find that by calling the number on the back of the card or going to the website listed on the back of the card. Once you have that balance you’ll need to add that card to your Amazon Wallet.

1 – Simply log-in to “Your Account” on Amazon.com.

2 – On your account page, click on “Payment Option”which will take you to your “Amazon Wallet”.

3 – Scroll down to the “Add a New Payment Method” and add your Visa gift card to your Amazon account like you would with any debit or credit card.

Your next step is to go to the Amazon Gift Card area. You should see “Gift Card” on the option bar towards the top of the Amazon site.

If you have the option to “Reload your balance”, click on that link and you can add money to your personal gift card balance by entering the amount using the newly added Visa card as payment.

You can also choose to send an eCard to yourself or to someone else by selecting that option and following the steps on the page to add the eGift Card to your shopping cart and then you can use the newly added Visa card as payment for that eGift card:


Once these new balances are in your account as gift cards, you can use them as part of your purchase and you no longer have those cards laying around with nothing to do.

Reading The Most Recent Posts on Your Facebook News Feed

Maybe you haven’t thought about it when reading through the news feed on your Facebook page, but when you do, notice that you see most of the same posts time and time again.

The reason for this is that Facebook shows you the “Top Stories” which are the most popular stories from friends, Pages and groups at the top of your News Feed. Facebook wants to show you things it thinks you might be interested in seeing. Out of thousands of potential stories it could show you each day Facebook runs each story through an extensive check. Facebook then prioritizes stories it thinks you’ll like, comment on, share and actually read. It figures the more important the stories are to you the more you’ll come back.

Facebook also looks at who posted the story. Facebook figures the more you’ve interacted with the author in the past the more likely you’d like to see future posts from that person. You may have liked something someone had posted, or commented on it. If you’ve clicked on a post to read it or shared a post, Facebook takes that into consideration and then shows you more of that person’s post. That’s why you see more posts from people you’ve interacted with and fewer posts from those you haven’t.

BUT, what if you want to see the news feed by the most recent, so in chronological order, and not by the Top Stories?

On your phone or tablet,

  • click on the triple bars at the top of the feed.
  • From the menu that comes up, scroll down to Feeds. You’ll see a link to Most Recent.
  • Select Most Recent and your news feed will change and will start at the top with the most recent and as you scroll down you’ll see the posts in chronological order.

On your computer,

  • choose News Feed from the menu bar on the left side and
  • select Most Recent.

Keep in mind that Facebook’s default order is Top Stories so you’ll have to perform these steps each time you access Facebook. Try it though and see the difference.

Get Money Back When Shopping Online

Wouldn’t it be nice to get a percentage of what you spend online back? With Ebates, you can.
Have you heard of Ebates? Have you used it in the past but forget to check it when you’re buying something?
There is a large list of stores that you can shop online, including Crate&Barrel, Macy’s, Groupon, Kohl’s, Walmart, American Eagle, Men’s Wearhouse, Amazon, Best Buy and many more, over 2,000 in fact. You can see the list here – Ebates.
When you sign up, you can go to the Ebates website, click on the store you’re planning to shop at, scroll through the different deals and shop. Ebates will automatically credit your Ebates account with the percentage of funds and then send you a check or apply the balance to your PayPal account every quarter.
If you’re someone who forgets to use Ebates first, there is an add-on you can add to your browser so that when you visit a shop to buy something, Ebates will pop up in the upper corner and remind you what percentage of rebate you will get and give you a click-through that will reopen the website but under the Ebates link so that you get credit.
You can even download the app to your phone if you do a lot of shopping over your cell phone.
To get these browser add-ons or phone apps, go to Ebates, scroll all the way to the bottom and under the Apps, Tools & Services you will see the links for the Ebates Buttons and the Ebates Mobile Apps.
So, if you like getting cash back while you shop, join Ebates.

Facebook Tip: Stop Receiving Notifications From a Facebook Post

So, you’ve commented on someone’s post and now you’re receiving notifications every time someone else comments on it. Sometimes this is a good thing, as you’d like to continue to see the updates, but other times you don’t and the notifications keep piling up.

To stop receiving notifications from a Facebook post that you’ve commented on:

  • Go to the original post
  • Click on the little gray down arrow at the top right-hand corner of the post
  • Choose “Turn Off Notifications”

You’ll still get notifications if someone comments on your comment but not for all of the other comments for the post.

Computer Tip: How to Easily Enlarge Webpage or Email Fonts

Every now and again you may come across a webpage or an email and the fonts are just too small to read. There is an easy way to enlarge, or decrease if needed, the fonts on the screen so that you can view the screen easier.

On a Windows computer –

  • Hold down the Ctrl key and press the + (plus) key. Every time you press the + (plus) key the font will enlarge more.
  • To reduce the font size, hold down the Ctrl key and press the – (minus) key. Every time you press the – (minus) key the font will decrease more.

On a Mac computer –

  • Hold down the Command key and press the + (plus) key. Every time you press the + (plus) key the font will enlarge more.
  • To reduce the font size, hold down the Command key and press the – (minus) key. Every time you press the – (minus) key the font will decrease more.


If you have a mouse with a wheel, if you hold down the Ctrl key on Windows or the Command key on a Mac and the scroll the wheel on the mouse up or down, it will also enlarge or decrease the font.

Setting Your Browser to Open Multiple Pages When You Start

With more people using web-based email programs, like Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Outlook Online, and also needing to do searches or view the news, they find themselves opening up multiple tabs once they open their browser. Wouldn’t it be nice if those tabs opened up automatically for you when you open your browser? Let me tell you how to do this in Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari and Chrome.

In Microsoft Edge,

  • Click the three dots at the upper right of the browser.
  • From the drop down menu, click Settings. 
  • Under the “Open with” options, click the button next to “A specific page or pages”.
  • Click in the box just under that option. Click on Custom. You can remove any websites that are there by clicking on the X to the right of them and you can add new websites to open by adding them in the box showing “Enter a web address”, such as http://www.google.com or mail.google.com. Click the + to add it to the list.

In Internet Explorer,

  • Click on Tools (gear) at the upper right of the browser.
  • From the drop down menu, click on Internet Options.
  • Under the General tab, there is a Home Page box. Enter each of the website addresses you want to open in this box, each on their own line.
  • Click OK to save and close.

In Firefox,

  • Click on the three horizontal lines at the upper right of the browser.
  • From the drop down menu, click on Options.
  • On the “General” page, choose “Show my home page” When Firefox starts.
  • In the “Home Page” box,  enter the addresses of sites separated by a pipe | (a key usually above the enter key on the keyboard). Or, you can open up all the sites in tabs and hit the “Use Current Pages” button.
  • Close that tab and they should all save.

In Safari,

  • Open a new Safari window.
  • Create tabs and open all of the websites you’d like to start Safari with.
  • Open the Bookmarks menu and select “Add Bookmarks for These X Tabs”.
  • Add a name for the bookmarks folder, like Start Pages.
  • Open the Safari menu and select “Preferences”.
  • Click on the General tab.
  • Select “A new window” from the “Safari open  with” setting.
  • Select “Choose tabs folder” from the “New windows open with” setting.
  • Select the folder you just created in the window that appears. The next time you open Safari, these tabs will start automatically.

In Chrome,

  • Click on the three horizontal lines at the upper right of the browser.
  • From the drop down menu, click on Settings.
  • In the “On startup” section, click the button next to “Open a specific page or set of pagers”.
  • Click on Set pages to the right of that option.You can remove any websites that are there by clicking on the X to the right of them and you can add new websites to open by adding them in the box showing “Enter URL…”, such as http://www.google.com or mail.google.com. Repeat as desired to open multiple pages when starting Google Chrome. Or, you can open up all the sites in tabs and hit the “Use Current Pages” button.
  • When done, click OK. You can then close out of the Settings tab.

Facebook’s “On This Day”

One of the better apps in Facebook is the “On This Day” app that allows you to see what you had on your timeline on this day in previous years. That look down memory lane stirs up a lot of feelings.

Facebook often times will post it on your current timeline but if you miss it, or it doesn’t show up on a particular day, you can easily bring it up yourself.

To see your memories:

  1. Click Apps in the left column on your home page
  2. Click On This Day

You may even see it listed under the Apps section on your home page in the left column.

You can also turn on notifications for “On This Day” to see when you have memories to look back on.

To turn on notifications:

  1. Go to facebook.com/onthisday
  2. Click Notifications and select All Memories

To turn off notifications:

  1. Go to facebook.com/onthisday
  2. Click Notifications and select Off

Quickly Move Between Open Programs on Your Computer

Computer Tip: If you find yourself moving between two programs, don’t use your mouse, use the Alt-Tab on a PC or Command-Tab combo on a Mac. If you hold down the Alt key on a PC or the Command key on a Mac and then press the Tab key, you can move between all of the open programs on your computer.

Block Unwanted Calls on Your Cell Phone

Back in the November newsletter, I told you about a service that would block unwanted calls to your home phone with NoMoRobo. As more people are doing away with home phone numbers and using their cell phones exclusively, I’d like to tell you about a service that blocks unwanted calls to your cell phone.
Truecaller is an app that you install on your phone and once you set it as the default dialer, it screens all incoming calls and tells you if it’s a spam call or not. If it is an unwanted number, you can block it through the app so if that number tries calling again, it’ll be blocked. If you happen to miss a call and don’t recognize the number, you can do a search of that number and see if it’s spam or not, saving you a call-back. Truecaller collects its data through their partnerships with various phone directories, social networks and the Truecaller users.

Truecaller also has an app called TrueMessenger that will keep spam messages out of your SMS inbox and will easily identify unknown senders. You can set your own rules to block spam or let the Truecaller community start you off.

The Truecaller app is available for both Apple and Android phones while the TrueMessenger app is only available for Android. I’ve been using Truecaller for quite a while and highly recommend it.