Thanks for the thumbs up. So happy...it's like I turned a corner finally! As a followup...card arrived, fico went down by 3 points then shot up 10. Having a higher credit limit, despite the hard pull, and lowering my AAoA, being at 1% Util, not less also helps. Finally made it to the 700 club @ 703.
I will resist applying for more credit at least for another 6 months. I'd love another rewards card, and airlines cards (southwest and united). But will garden for now!
Congrats and good luck!!!