Take Advantage of What You Have

July 22, 2008 at 7:19 pm Leave a comment

Our cable (TV) bill is pretty high, probably around $80/month or so. Initially it was not idea – my husband wanted a HD (high definition) TV and if you have a HD TV, you will probably want to get HD TV channels. It’s not like you can’t want non-HD channels on a HD TV, but they are not a clear as the HD channels. So one thing lead to another, which made the cable bill higher and higher. We also have a DVR. Having DVR service through our cable provider is much cheaper than getting TIVO or any other similar service. Although we will give up our DVR and cable if that ever becomes necessary, we hope will won’t have to. It’s so convenient to record shows and movies and watch them when our schedule allows. Being able to watch shows that are not appropriate for our son, we can record and watch when he is in bed.

(added July 23 – I wanted to clarify that because we spend extra money on our cable, we have chosen not to go out to eat or other spend much money on other entertainment; we’ve cut back in some places to put more in this area)

So, if you have a DVR or other recording service, make sure you use it. Record movies and TV shows you want to see. Spend some time looking through your TV guide to see if any movies will be on that you can record. We never rented a lot of movies, but we rent even less now that we have our DVR.

Every few months we receive a coupon for a free On Demand movie from our cable company. We just watch it, and then send in the coupon to our cable company and we are credited for the movie. On Demand movies are new(er) movies and are about the same price of movie rentals our local Blockbuster. However, running to Blockbuster uses gas, since we have to pick up the movie and return it a day later, plus it’s at least 10 minutes away, so it takes a lot more time than clicking on it with our TV remote.

I also borrow movies from our library. For the most part, my son chooses a video that we wants to see. It’s free and we can have it for 1 week. I should check to see what movies are available now that I would want to see, it’s been a while and hopefully there are some new movies.

Our cable service also has free On Demand movies that we can watch at any time. They are normally older movies, or at least not recent releases, but I’ve been able to watch several that I enjoy, and they are totally worth it, being free. 🙂

Check with your local library to see what services are available to you. Many churches also have libraries, some are open to the public. Perhaps you will be able to find books and movies at a church library that are not available at a public library.

When shopping, always check with a store to see if they have a “frequent shopper card”. Yes, they are somewhat annoying, but in most cases, you will save money if you use the card. My main grocery store is now offering money off the gas station that they own. For every $100 that I spend at the grocery store, I get $.10/gallon off my gas. Even though I am spending less at the grocery store, I have still been able to save money when buying gas. See if your grocery store has any perks associated with shopping there, it doesn’t hurt to ask.

Other ideas:
* watch movies you own (if you bought it, you should like it, and why not watch it several times to get your money out of it)
* borrow movies from friends (be sure to lend some of yours too)
* watch movies or TV online at hulu.com
* spend time together as a family
* play games (online, board, card, video)
* have a game day – invite friends and have everyone bring food and games; you can enjoy time with friends, you won’t have to put out lots of money to feed them, and you can learn new games

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Entry filed under: Groceries, Movies/TV, Shopping. Tags: , , , , .

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