You can call me a nerd, but there is something interesting to me about official documents like certificates, currency, bank notes, stocks, etc. The formal look to them and various ornamentation (e.g. script letters, pictures, embossed seals) make them fun to look at and study. Maybe it is because they are so formal, kept in a safe place, and usually are involved in important matters that makes them so intriguing.
A few years back I discovered that the IRS and the Treasury Department allowed you to get some or all of your federal tax refund in savings bonds. After looking into it further, I discovered that this was the only way to get actual, paper bonds any more as the Treasury Department moved to an all electronic format. I filled out the required form an got some of my refund in savings bonds. Every year since then I have done this with my refund. Maybe it is foolish to tie up money in bonds that earn a small amount of interest. Maybe there is something else I could do with the money to earn more interest. At least this forces me to actual save some of my refund, instead of spending it all. I have also amassed a nice little collection of bond certificates in the process. This year’s bonds arrived in the mail today. The rest of my federal refund got dumped into my bank account earlier this week. Now I am just waiting for my money from Ohio to show up. Once that arrives I will fill out my Cleveland tax forms, and I will be done with taxes for the year.