Holiday Shopping Challenge Outcome & $250 GC WINNER! @shopsmall

If you remember, late November I was asked to participate in a Holiday Shopping Challenge. I was given $250 in American Express supplemented with 40,000 Memebership Rewards points to shop for five of my loved ones.

After shopping through the Membership Rewards online catalog I chose to redeem for $200 in American Express gcs.

After interviewing each of my gift recipients in depth I found that they would prefer to combine their allocated monies with everyone else for a family gift. To be honest I was very surprised, but touched. Every single person brought it up without my prompting or suggesting.

We are a household that tends to not buy unless we need. We have a house full of tube televisions and have refused to purchase a flat screen until it was a need. Apparently this year every family member felt the need to splurge.


I did a lot of research online for the best price and found this RCA television. It wasn’t too big or too small and it fit in our budget (with some excess). My husband took our old entertainment center (you know, the super tall ones with the boxed in part for the tube tv) and rebuilt it to hold the new television. This cost less than $10 because he found a super deal on a piece of wood (I will post later how he did this). My final touch was the runner. I found that at T.J. Maxx for $20. It was a little over my anticipated budget but it matches my décor perfectly and adds a soft touch to the tv stand. We repurposed the baskets you see in the photo from another area of our house and the VCR, DVD player and Xbox are “old”. Combine these purchases with the $18 lighted Christmas Tree I purchased on Small Business Saturday and I spent $442… $8 under budget!

I am so proud of my family. They went past thinking of just themselves and wanted to combine their gift into one for the family. Every single member of the family is enjoying our gift and nobody has wished they made a different decision.


Now for our $250 gift certificate winner!

#7686 out of 10,081 entries

Name: Cathy W

Email: cjwallace43@

Option: Tweet About the Giveaway

Cathy has been emailed and has already confirmed her prize.

Congratulations Cathy!


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I am working with OPR for American Express and will be receiving an American Express gift card and Membership Rewards points to shop with.  I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” The opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own. Your experience with the product may differ from mine. The sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment and will be shipping the winner(s) their prize(s). For more information read my disclosure policy.


  1. I loved the Shop Small campaign and I really hope they do it again next year.

  2. Jo-Ann Brightman says

    I like how you managed to refurbish for the new tv

  3. Pamela Halligan says

    From m experience, family gifts are often the most memorable, and it sounds like your family will really enjoy your new TV.

  4. Megan says

    I see your kids also love “Sid the Science Kid”! My son LOVES that show!

  5. Jacqueline Griffin says

    It’s beautiful! Congrats on your new TV! Congrats to Cathy as well! You both received awesome gifts! =) Happy Holidays!!

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