Using Serve to make your life easier (and a Giveaway!)

Do you guys carry cash on you? I’m one of those people who literally spend cash like there’s a hole burning in my pocket. One day I have a couple twenties on me, the next I have no idea where all my money went… So I basically just stopped carrying cash with me. It’s just better that way.

But there’s always those nights where everyone is out and I’m the only one with a card and no cash. Usually I end up paying the bill and people give me cash, or we all throw in our cards and have the bill split. I am sure our server always appreciates that! American Express has come up with a solution for that very situation. It’s aptly called Serve. Instead of boring you with the details of what they’re all about or how it works, I’m going to show you how I used Serve on a girls night out the other day.

First I sent an email to a couple of my girlfriends to see if anyone wanted to get together for drinks and dinner. Shockingly, we were able to set a date fairly easily. Once that hurtle was overcome, we had to decide where to go. We all agreed we wanted to try something new. After quite a few emails back and forth, we decided on The Biltmore Grill in Newton. A key factor in that decision was the fact that they have Chicken and Waffles on the menu. We all agreed that there were so many things we wanted to try, that we’d order a little of everything and split it.

This isn’t a restaurant review, but I have to tell you the food there was comfort food to the max. The chicken and waffles were definitely the star of the evening and I really appreciated that they do beer flights. I enjoyed a variety of seasonal beers. I feel like there aren’t enough places to get a flight of beer nearby…

Ok so here’s where I tell you about how Serve made my life easier that night. First, I had already signed up for a Serve account online (you get a FREE $10 just for signing up). Second, I had installed the Serve app on my Android phone. And lastly, my Serve credit card had already come in the mail!

One thing to note about the credit card. It doesn’t have your name on it. I found that somewhat odd, but since it works like a pre-paid credit card, there’s no harm in someone using the card if you lost it. You could simply remove all funds from the card by going online or into your app.

So when the bill came that night, I got out my Serve credit card and paid for the entire bill myself. While the server was running the card, I logged in to my account on my phone.

I used the “Split the Bill” option within the app and put in the amount of the bill, the tip that I wanted to leave, and the number of people at dinner.

On the next screen, I put in everyone’s names (the app uses your address book to identify everyone via phone number or email address). Notice those bars under everyone’s name? You can use those to allocated different amounts for each person. It defaults to splitting the bill evenly, but it’s nice to have the option to have different people pay different amounts.

Since I was using the app to request money from others, they don’t have to have a Serve account at this point. To actually use Serve to send money, they would have to sign up for a Serve account.

The next screen prompted me for a message to include in the request. Β Once I hit submit, each of the girls was notified with an email in their Inbox requesting the amount due for their portion of the bill.

And I got transaction numbers so I could track the transactions on my app or online at

Once the payments have been made through Serve, the transactions will move from pending to completed.

While I was playing around with the app, I found some other useful things I wanted to share. First, check out all the options available when I logged into the app.

The Pizza Party option caught my eye. Check it out, you can divide the pizza bill by number of slices!

Another option that seems useful would be to link subaccounts. I could imagine using subaccounts to provide your children’s allowance or setting aside a certain amount of money for holiday shopping for example.

Overall, Serve was very easy to use and I can’t wait to explore the other options available. And now on to the good stuff, the giveaway!! American Express is offering one lucky reading a $100 Serve credit! (the winner will have to sign up for a Serve account to claim the prize)

Only one entry per person.Β To enter, leave a comment by midnight on 12/27 answering this question: What are your plans for the holidays?

To answer my own question, Hubby and I are working until Thursday, then we’re off the rest of the year. We’ll be heading down to his mom’s for Christmas with the family. There will be lots of food, family, and good times.

As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received a $250 stipend to try Serve from American Express. Sign up for Serve and receive $10 credit towards your first use. Comment below within the next 7 days for your chance to win an extra $100 credit to your account! Official sweepstakes rules and regulations may be found here:

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80 Responses to “Cookbook Review and GIVEAWAY!”

  1. #
    Lauren — October 11, 2008 at 4:28 pm

    What a cool giveaway! This would be awesome for my son’s 2nd birthday next month. Thanks for the contest!

    My email is lauren.c.king at gmail dot com

  2. #
    Anne — October 11, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    What a cute book! I’m just starting to decorate and would love this for ideas!

    anneblanke@hotmail dot com

  3. #
    slush — October 11, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    That chocolate cupcake recipe is still my go-to as well. Although the chocolate cupcake from CH: Coffee is a close 2nd. (The CH:Coffee one is fussier, so I still use the old one the most.)

    I would love to get my hands on this book. I am in charge of 2 upcoming bake sales, and inspiration is much needed.

  4. #
    Megan — October 11, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    What a great book! I have this book on my wish list – so I’m keeping my fingers crossed!!

    mybakingadventures at gmail dot com

  5. #
    Toby — October 11, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    oopps- forgot my email gty46at hotmail dot com

  6. #
    Sandy — October 11, 2008 at 6:27 pm

    Sounds awesome

    sgbradstreet@hotmail dot com

  7. #
    jennifer — October 11, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    How very cool! And such a cute book, too.

    jenniferhaude at

  8. #
    Shawna — October 11, 2008 at 7:23 pm

    Looks like an adorable book!

    shawna626 at gmail dot com

  9. #
    Tiff — October 11, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    Looks like a great book! Love your blog.

    ryanandtiffany at gmail dot com

  10. #
    Chrissy — October 11, 2008 at 8:16 pm

    I love to bake cakes and this book looks like so much fun! Thanks πŸ™‚

    chrissyblogs at gmail dot com

  11. #
    Jingle — October 11, 2008 at 8:24 pm

    This looks like SUCH a fun book!

  12. #
    mic — October 11, 2008 at 9:14 pm

    i would love to get a free cookbook…i so love baking cupcakes right now!

    my email is micmic2177 at yahoo dot com

  13. #
    michelle — October 11, 2008 at 9:28 pm

    What a great looking Book! I loved making my own cake for my daughters 1st birthday! This book would give me a lot of inspiration for so many other birthdays parties to come!

    Michelle724 at gmail dot com

  14. #
    Alicia — October 11, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    Looks fuuuuun!
    aliciaambler at gmail dot com.

  15. #
    grifam93 — October 11, 2008 at 9:41 pm

    looks like a lot of fun, love to bake!!! aseminara at gmail dot com

  16. #
    Julie — October 11, 2008 at 9:46 pm

    great idea! cool book!

  17. #
    mrsdanigirl8 — October 11, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    I would love to be entered into this give away. It sounds like an awesome book with great recipes and ideas πŸ™‚

    My email address is dani_girl8 at hotmail dot com


  18. #
    Laura — October 11, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    What a fabulous giveaway! I bet I could get years of use from that book for our 1 year olds future birthdays!

    destinationAZ at yahoo dot com

  19. #
    Mimi — October 11, 2008 at 10:22 pm

    This book looks great. Awsome Idea!!

  20. #
    Domestic Goddess..Diva sometimes — October 11, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    How fun! Please enter me to your giveaway.

    curtnancy@yahoo dot com

  21. #
    mygooglereader — October 11, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    with a little one and one on the way this would be great inspiration. Thanks for the giveaway!

    evedal06 at yahoo dot com

  22. #
    ~Amber~ — October 11, 2008 at 11:05 pm

    What a fun looking cookbook. I would love to win a copy of it. I am supposed to help with 1st birthday cake in a couple of months and this would come in handy.

  23. #
    EZA — October 12, 2008 at 12:24 am

    Awesome idea! This would definitely give me baking inspiration!

    elizabeth.stank AT gmail DOT com

  24. #
    Kayla — October 12, 2008 at 12:35 am

    What a great idea! @ gmail dot com

  25. #
    Stephanie — October 12, 2008 at 12:52 am

    Yay for a giveaway! This book looks absolutely amazing!!

  26. #
    Jaime — October 12, 2008 at 1:13 am

    what a cute book!

    goodeatsblog at gmail dot com

  27. #
    Baking Away — October 12, 2008 at 2:04 am

    That looks like a great book. Please enter me!

    lrandall79 at

  28. #
    susies1955 — October 12, 2008 at 8:49 am

    What a neat giveaway. This would be a great book for me and my grandson to explore. πŸ™‚
    susies at twcny dot rr dot com

  29. #
    CuteStuffInside — October 12, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    I would love to win a copy of this book! I’m having an “I Want Candy!” giveaway right not too – ends 10/15 – I invite you to enter.


    My email is cutestuffinside at hotmail dot com

  30. #
    Nestie Tess2mommies — October 12, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Great idea, that looks like such a cool book. My email is tess2mommies at gmail dot come

  31. #
    The Queen of Quite a Lot — October 12, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    That looks like a really neat book! I am crossing my fingers and adding it to my wish list just in case. Thanks!

    kristen.arland at

  32. #
    Jess — October 12, 2008 at 2:24 pm

    What an adorable book! I’m totally a cupcake addict, but trying out new stuff is aways fun.

    jessica.tupper at gmail dot com

  33. #
    Ashley — October 12, 2008 at 2:34 pm

    I have loved this book from the first time I laid eyes on it! I love cute, creative cakes!!

    cakesbyashley at hotmail dot com

  34. #
    marilyn15 — October 12, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    what a great giveaway! I love baking and this would give me loads of ideas.

  35. #
    Nina — October 12, 2008 at 5:13 pm

    Such a cute book!

    txaggie02 at hotmail dot com

  36. #
    Princeton McKinney — October 12, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    That book looks like so much fun. You’re sweet to do a giveaway. And I am craving chocolate cupcakes now!
    kopperhead at cox dot net

  37. #
    Heather — October 12, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    Hi! I love your blog! This book looks amazing, and I am excited for this contest! I forgot to put my email down last time πŸ™‚

    hmpatterson(at)accesswave DOT COM

  38. #
    Joy — October 12, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    The cover is too cute! I love the how-to photos – very helpful. Will watch for the results of the throwdown πŸ™‚
    Thanks for the review!
    joyanna at ameritech dot net

  39. #
    Heather — October 12, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    what a great book!

  40. #
    Christine — October 12, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    looks yummy!

  41. #
    babyblue1155 — October 12, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    Aww that book looks so adorable! I’m only an amateur baker, so I have a lot to learn. This book seems like a lot of fun to learn from. =]

    babyblue1155 at gmail dot com

  42. #
    Mandy — October 12, 2008 at 10:03 pm

    Awesome book. I want one!

    mycatrules at charter dot net!

    LOVE your sites. Then again, I love food, so anything food related is fair game.

  43. #
    Calantha — October 12, 2008 at 11:10 pm

    OMG OMG I have been meaning to pick up a book on cakes for while! That one sounds like a good choice!


  44. #
    Karen — October 12, 2008 at 11:38 pm

    My 29 year old “kid” would love this book. Thanks for the opportunity to win one.

    my email is

  45. #
    Trisha — October 13, 2008 at 12:46 am

    How fun! I would love to be considered in your giveaway! We just had a baby girl 2 weeks ago and it’s never too early to plan for her first birthday!

    My email is paislie98 at hotmail dot com

  46. #
    Katie K — October 13, 2008 at 1:39 am

    Ooo, choose me! πŸ™‚ My mom was a cake decorator but never got the hang of using fondant & I would SO love to learn how to do it. And it’s clear that this author/artist knows her fondant!

    email to
    katiekolodzy at comcast dot net

  47. #
    Table for Seven — October 13, 2008 at 1:56 am

    This book sounds great. My boys would totally appreciate some new ideas for their birthday cakes.

    mommytoboyz@gmail dot com

  48. #
    Christina — October 13, 2008 at 2:12 am

    That book is so beautiful! I would love to attempt a cake or a cupcake for my kids too!


  49. #
    andie — October 13, 2008 at 2:24 am

    It looks like a very fun book. I can’t wait to get my hands on it!

    andielib at yahoo dot com

  50. #
    Puzzled — October 13, 2008 at 4:32 am

    I can’t wait to get this book! what an artist she is.

    My email address is meera at baymoon dot com. Thanks!

  51. #
    she_ra_13 — October 13, 2008 at 4:48 am

    This book looks like it will be great inspiration for my son’s 1st birthday this January!

    she_ra_13 at yahoo dot com

  52. #
    vettie — October 13, 2008 at 7:25 am

    Wow. This sounds awesome! I would love to win this book!!

  53. #
    Morgan — October 13, 2008 at 9:08 am

    I love this book!

  54. #
    Carrie's Creations — October 13, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    I have heard so many awesome things about this cookbook – I’d love to learn all the techniques!

    caschlim at comcast dot net

  55. #
    Steffie — October 13, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    What a great giveaway! This book looks so fun!

    steffie100 at hotmail dot com

  56. #
    Justine — October 13, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    Sounds like a great book and I’d love to have a copy of it…

    jwaite@aumail dot averett dot edu

  57. #
    Snichols — October 13, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    Wow, this book looks so kewl! With lots of ideas!! Thanks for having the contest!!

  58. #
    Julie — October 13, 2008 at 1:47 pm

    That book looks so cute and fun!

  59. #
    Meg — October 13, 2008 at 4:26 pm

    That book looks adorable!

  60. #
    Amy — October 13, 2008 at 5:12 pm

    That looks so awesome! πŸ™‚ I love creative cake ideas!

    amabbate at gmail dot com

  61. #
    MusicalVoyyeur — October 13, 2008 at 6:21 pm

    Gosh! You think maybe there’s kitty litter cake in there?? Ooh, I can’t wait. I’m all buttered up!

    Email is: musicalvoyyeur at aol dot com.

  62. #
    Yvette — October 13, 2008 at 6:31 pm

    Great giveaway! I have had thisbook on my wish list so I sure do hope I get it. It looks amazing.


  63. #
    kamewh — October 13, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    This looks like such a wonderful book! Thank you for the giveaway!

  64. #
    Jared — October 13, 2008 at 10:28 pm

    Looks like it’ll be a good book.

    My e-mail is

  65. #
    Gina — October 14, 2008 at 12:41 am

    With three daughters under the age of six and a little boy who is about to turn one – this book would be a great source of inspiration in our house! πŸ™‚

    ahalfdozeneggs at gmail dot com

  66. #
    savy lender — October 14, 2008 at 7:51 am

    Oh, I would love this book for my girlfriend!


  67. #
    Kitchen Flavours — October 14, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    gr8 idea. Book looks awesome.

  68. #
    MoonFreckle — October 14, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    What a great cookbook! I can’t wait to see your results!

    angelaj105 at gmail

  69. #
    Mack Family — October 14, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    Ooops- my email address is

    danipmack at gmail dot com

  70. #
    Stacey — October 14, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    Such a cute book. I’ve volunteered to make cakes for some of my friends , so this book would come in handy.

    stacey.gallant at gmail dot com

  71. #
    La Pixie — October 14, 2008 at 7:35 pm

    that book is soooooo cute. Im crossing my fingers that I will win one!

    lapixie [dot] dusted [at] gmail [dot] com

  72. #
    Stacey — October 14, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    Love Confetti Cakes – especially her sock monkey revenge cake!
    staceys.scoop at gmail dot com

  73. #
    Lisa magicsprinkles — October 15, 2008 at 1:53 am

    Oooooooh! I would love to have this adorable book! Thanks for offering us the opportunity to win one.
    My email is lisa (dot) hatch at gmail (dot) com

  74. #
    supergirl5 — October 15, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    This book looks like so much fun! I’m sure i would spend tons of time in the kitchen with it!!!

    shopping_girl5 at hotmail dot com

  75. #
    Outnumbered2to1 — October 15, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    Yeah! I love this giveaway.

    email: outnumbered221@gmail dot com

  76. #
    Brooke & Freeland — October 15, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    The book sounds amazing!! Great giveaway! My email is in my profile.

  77. #
    Brooke & Freeland — October 15, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    The book sounds amazing!! Great giveaway! My email is in my profile.

  78. #
    BellaLovesPink — October 15, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    What an awesome giveaway!

    doreenre@yahoo DOT com

  79. #
    fourthmonth — October 16, 2008 at 2:12 am

    Popped over from Cake Wrecks. This book is fabulous! fourthmonth at gmail dot com

  80. #
    Melissa and James Atkinson — October 16, 2008 at 5:25 am

    This book looks amazing and would be great to add to my collection. Thanks for the review. . .

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