Prior to making the decision to get rid of a car, Devin and I started with smaller money-saving ideas, like deciding not to sign-up for a cable/dish bill. Instead, we opted for an antenna that could get free, local channels (like CBS, NBC, PBS, etc.). Devin is pretty tech-savvy and connected our desktop computer to our T.V. and through Windows Media, we used our computer like a DVR to record shows, like Big Brother, the Olympic Games, and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. It worked pretty well. And unlike watching it online, we were able to fast-forward through commercials (we couldn’t do that when using Hulu or watching from CBS). The down-sides were when it was super-windy, the antenna didn’t do so great. And football season could be non-existent in our house if ESPN was covering because they weren’t part of the free channels (that was a little sad when we hosted Thanksgiving at our house!).
Here’s what we did:
- (We didn’t have cable to cancel. But if you already have cable, cancel it.)
- Buy an antenna from Best Buy or wherever. Ours didn’t look like this, but it was pretty basic like this one.
- We connected our desktop computer to our T.V. and used Windows Media to schedule recordings.
- We watched our recorded shows on Windows Media.
We also decided to buy the digital streaming version of NetFlix. It was pretty amazing and cost like $9/month (or something like that). Another great free resource is the library or borrowing from friends or family
Recently, Devin got a Chromecast for Christmas from my mom and that can stream Netflix from our phones. It’s pretty awesome. Now that we’re living in Anchorage, Alaska, we’ve found that wifi isn’t unlimited; households pay for what they use, but that’s okay because it makes us appreciate the shows we stream a little bit more. And it makes us use T.V. a bit less and get outdoors more (unless you didn’t finish writing a blog before the kids woke up from nap time, so you put on one episode of Dora on for your kids so you could finish…yeah, that’s me right now).