Friday, July 12, 2013

So You've Decided To Leave Cable : A Handguide

    This morning has found me two cups of coffee deep at only 6:26 am. I slept terribly last night, and the day greeted me at 4:00am. This morning, I decided to work on my newest obsession of budgeting. Please allow me to vent for a moment, while I tell you why I absolutely loathe RCN and cable companies in general. While I love, love, love, BRAVO and all things real housewives, I think its insane to pay $135.00 a month for cable and Internet. I literally watch the news, and Bravo. THAT'S IT. About a year ago, I decided to as they say "cut the cable cord" and get rid of my cable. I kept Internet and it was about $50.00 a month with taxes etc when all was said and done. I made it about two solid months with no cable. Quite the impressive feat for a self proclaimed trash TV lover. I eventually went back to cable, mainly because Hans and I agreed he was going to pay for it and it was worth it to have ESPN and Bravo. The price had naturally gone up, within two months and the bill is standing strong at $135.00 a month. Did I mention we had showtime as well? It was an extra $3.00 a month to get great movies like, Sharknado and Scary Movie 9. You get the idea. Absolute garbage.

   I called recently, to see the options for lowering the bill. Perhaps back to basic cable? The nice man, told me that If I changed service, It would be a cool 8 dollar savings to have about 20 channels vs my 200 that I currently have. I promptly wrote this man off, assuming perhaps he was smoking Crystal Meth. 


 There must be a better way to watch TV and keep up with current movies. I did some early bird research this morning and I am here to say, there are some options for us who are trying to eat and go out once in a while in lieu of living off cat food and being poor after paying the cable bill. Whooo Hooo! 


1. Roku 
My friends Lauren and Dave have Roku and from what I've seen its a neat little contraption. It streams TV, music and movies from sites you may already frequent like Pandora, Netflix and Hulu. With streaming options for TV shows and movies, it pretty much eliminates the need to have cable. You will however, still need an Internet connection. Unless you live under a rock, you most likely already have that. There are four Roku options. The most basic starting at $49.99 and the most souped up version with HD capability and all the bells and whistles for $99.99. Roku is also offering free shipping on their website currently. 
Roku Details:
When you have time for TV, Roku delivers with the best selection of streaming entertainment anywhere – from popular premium services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBO GO, Spotify and MLB.TV to many free entertainment options like Crackle, Pandora, Disney and VEVO. Every Roku brings you access to over 750 channels featuring the best in movies, TV shows, live sports, music, photo and
video sharing, games, international programming, radio, tech news, non-tech news, podcasts, cartoons, clips, cat tricks, and… well, you get the idea.

2. Mohu Leaf Ultimate HDTV Antenna

This option is one I have never come across until this morning, while scouring the Internet. MOHU is an HDTV antenna ( think bunny ears) for your TV. You can use it to pick up channels for FREE without any cable subscription. There are more then one type of HDTV antenna, but this one by far has the best reviews and success with users. Simply attach the MOHU to your TV and locate the best place for the receptor. Although a little sightly, depending where you place it, you could get up to 30 channels for free in HD WITH NO CABLE SUBSCRIPTiON. One Caveat, you will need Internet for this gadget as well. Not too shabby, might be worth a go. Online, they are on average about $90.00 but I also found them on EBAY new for about $55.00. Shop around for a deal. 

Mohu details:
With the Mohu Leaf Ultimate, you no longer have to pay high monthly cable or satellite bills to enjoy your favorite shows. The-top-of-the-line Mohu Leaf Ultimate delivers the most popular shows and more on network television for FREE in full 1080 HD. These stations include Fox, PBS, ABC, CBS, and NBC. 


1. Netflix 

Pretty much everyone is familiar with Netflix at this point. Use it to stream TV shows as well as movies on up to three devices for as low as $7.99 per month. You can also get a free month subscription with access to their huge online library :)

2. Hulu Plus  
Stream current and older TV shows for free on your computer. Upgrade to HULU Plus to stream this content to your TV or Smart phone. Use it with your Roku for as low as $7.99 a month.

3. Crackle 

FREE streaming video and television shows right to your TV, or computer. There is a limited selection however, in comparison to the other subscriptions listed.

4. Amazon Prime

Free streaming movies and TV with an Amazon Prime subscription. Without a subscription you can still watch, for about $4.00 a movie. Amazon prime memberships are about $80.00 for a yearly subscription.

 If you have used any of these devices, or subscriptions, I would love to hear about it. Just remember, if you do decide to cut your cable ties, you could end up saving a substantial amount of money. Be aware, you do need Internet to run all of these devices, and use these streaming subscriptions. That's a small price to pay in my opinion, plus you most likely already have it. Remember, most major network channels are now broadcasting for free. With all the free TV options available and streaming live movies and TV, there is no real need to pay for cable anymore  :)

Monday, July 8, 2013

Go time.

Here we go. Its the eve of my 30th birthday, and as I sit here drinking a Busch and trying to sort through all of my emotions I cant help but reflect on the past 10 years. For the record, stating that 10 years has passed since I turned 20, really hurts. I am feeling the 30 burn at the moment but I am going to keep this post upbeat, cause lets be honest, how bad could 30 be?? I am going to spare you the Jacula highlights of yesteryear. But please know, I wrote them all out. Then I smiled, and hit delete. I don't need to list them all here. Here is what I can tell you. I have an amazing family. We might not be the most normal, but we get each other and that's all that matters. Family is everything. Who else will tell you, that you are 30 flirty and fabulous when you feel 30 old and boring? I can also tell you, true friends are hard to find, you will know if you have them. Its easy to see. My regrets so far in life are the following: Not taking enough pictures. So I want to make sure I do that this year. Also, on my current things to do list: Eat a banana split, learn to do a cartwheel ( I have 365 days to perfect this before 31) and do more things that I am afraid of. Today, I am proud to report I watched countless videos on line on how to install flooring and I signed up for a tile laying class at the Home Depot. Go me. So without further ado, this moment that has been 10 years of anxiety in the making is here. People say that your 30's are some of the best times of your life. We will see about that. As for 30, I am ready bitches. Lets do it.