Cutting Back

It’s that time of year again, presents, dinners, family parties and gatherings, which basically equate to one or two things; food and money. Both of which we can’t seem to get enough of šŸ˜‰ For the money side of things, everyone seems to be cutting back, which is can be a good thing, especially if you are buying items that you don’t need. Recently I have looked a little harder at my monthly spending and highlighted areas that I could cut back or maybe shop around for a better deal.

There were three areas in which I was able to cut back:

1.) Garbage & Recycling Fees

Paying over $90 every quarter for garbage removal seemed a little steep to me, especially when my household only accumulates 1 bag of trash a week (the rest is recycling – which the garbage service also picks up). So I called the garbage removal company and asked what they could do for me, I explained that I was a loyal customer and even recommended the service to my neighbor (which she eventually signed up for). They knocked $8 dollars off my quarterly bill, which is small yes, but is going to say me $32 dollars annually, not too shabby!

2.) Monthly Phone Bills (Home Line)

Our monthly phone bills for our home line were getting out of hand, it wasn’t because of the additional charges (ie., extra minutes or long distance calls). It was the base price of the phone service, we were “bundling” our phone with our internet and paying over $50 a month in phone charges alone. Enough was enough, we started shopping around and stumbled upon Vonage, which offered a number of plans that we could tailor to our needs = WONDERFUL!. So now for $17 a month (includes taxes and fees) we get more than enough services and minutes. Vonage also canceled our old phone service and sent us all the needed equipment for free. Now we are saving $33 a month, with an annual savings of $396 dollars, it is starting to add up!

3.) Cable TV & Video Rentals

This one was the kicker, between the poor service from our cable provider (which also supplied our internet and phone – which we switched) and the horrid monthly costs of over $120 a month, I was on the move for something better. However in our neck of the woods (literally) we don’t have a lot of options, so Direct TV is where I landed. I now have 4 TVs hooked up with a “whole-house” DVR, HBO and movie channels (limited time offer) I get all my cable needs met for $65 a month, a monthly savings of $55 and annually $660 in savings. Between the switch in cable, using NetFlix for streaming movies and shows, and when in need renting movies from Redbox we are saving a ton.

So, in summary for all three items, we are saving $90 a month and $1,088 annually, enough for a mini vacation or a nice addition to my closet!

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Recent Favs!

This Fall I have come across two favorite items, one for my puppy and one for me!

Puppy = Ruff Wear’s Flat Out Dog Leash

First off for my puppy, I try and walk her as much as possible, however with this cold and time change has become a little difficult. Also she is a bit of a “puller” – those of you who have dogs know that a 75 pound puppy pulling for 30 mins to an hour is not all that enjoyable on your arms or shoulders. So, I went searching for a better solution and found it in Ruff Wear’s Flat OutĀ Dog Leash. This leash is made to wear either around your waist, wrist, or simply held in your hand. For me the added stability wearing the leash around your waist is amazing. It frees up my arms to walk or jog with more ease, and when we go hiking I can simply continue the loop around my waist and clip the leash to itself. This also makes the easy access of the clip wonderful when other fellow hikers are coming down the path!

Ruff Wear's Flat Out Leash

MeĀ = Klean Kanteen Insulated Thermos

Ok the second favorite item is for me (and only me – no husbands or siblings), a thermos by Klean Kanteen. This BPA free container is made for hot and cold items, perfect for me whether I want a latte or ice water. I recently took it with me on a trip to Washington DC and tested out the claim that it will keep hot liquids hot for 6 hours = yup! and cold beverages cold for up to 24 hours = yup again! It was amazing to have this container which is light, insulated (doesn’t leave a ring on your coffee or side table) with me for the entire trip. I added the easy drink top, which allows for an easy drink and then switches off when done. The beverages also NEVER taste like metal, which was my complaint on a lot of the earlier containers.

Klean Kanteen Insulated Thermos 16 oz

Maybe you will see me walking my dog with my Ruff Wear Leash and drinking from my Klean Kanteen šŸ˜‰


Fun on the Fourth

The Fourth of July is almost here and I am really looking forward to relaxing with friends and family on the lake and outside!

Too much of my day is spent inside, behind a computer,Ā not being active. So a long weekend on the lake, away fromĀ all the stresses of lifeĀ is just what the doctor ordered. Don’t forget to celebrate in style and grab some fun red, white, and blue accessories, personally I will have on an AmericanĀ flagĀ pin wheelĀ headband (pictures to come shortly) courtesy of my recent trip to BostonĀ and possibly the some fun nail polish motif like the one I just saw on oneĀ of myĀ favorite blog/web sites. They just postedĀ the story today on a fun way to do-up your nails for the 4th, check it out at : http://thebeautydepartment.com/

Have a great weekend (hopefully long one), enjoy!


Girls Weekend – Boston Bound

Everyone one needs a weekend away, to relax, reflect, release, and restore. This is exactly what I did last weekend withĀ one of my besties, Shea.

Shea has been one of my best friends for a long time and sinceĀ moving out of the Boston area, I try toĀ visit as much as possible.Ā On this trip all I wanted to do was shop, eat, drink, relax, and have some quality girl time. Mission accomplished, we did all of the above and managed to get in some sight-seeing.

Shea lives in aĀ cute town south of Boston, call Plymouth, MA (you may have heard of it) šŸ™‚ Anyway, its nice to sight-see in a place with a lot of history and beauty.Ā Check out some of the “famous” places andĀ beautiful Massachusetts favorites, especially the Hydrangeas – I am kind of obsessed and have missed them since moving to upstate NY (so I planted some in my backyard this Spring). Enjoy the pictures, and if you get a chance, visit the historic place, there is a lot to do, more to see, and memories to build. Enjoy!

 


Living w/Bugs

So living in the Adirondack Park brings many benefits, lots of green scenery, flowers, lakes, mountains, wild life, etc…however it also brings the bugs out, and these aren’t any regular bugs, I am talking huge, leave you with scars and nightmares bugs.

I was having dinner last night on the deck and was immediately attacked by some nasty mosquitos and man were they hungry and not for the pizza I made! The Off candle we lit was not up to the job, however I do have a possible solution, I love the children’s (yes I said children’s and no I don’t have any) all natural spray by California Baby, the smell is awesome and its all natural (which is a huge plus in this household – we try to go green and all natural every chance we get), the only downer is that the product is really hard to find! Sometimes its available at Target, Ulta, and Soap.com/Diapers.com.

I highly recommend it if you get the chance to pick it up, in fact most of their products are amazing šŸ™‚ I was first hooked when my sister-in-law brought it up from the city (NYC), she is great with kid-friendly products and really knows her stuff when it comes to providing her children with high quality all natural products!

California Baby Bug Repellent


City Girl Lake George Wife

Hello World šŸ˜‰

So I am finally taking the plunge into the world of blogging/posting/layin it all out there! I will try and update as much as possible, but really just want to keep a documentary while providing some fun insights as to what fillsĀ up my day! I am not going to focus on anything specific. In factĀ my blog may be random at times (but that’s kind of me anyway), some information on all the things that I like to do: cook, travel, sports/exercise, fashion, friends, family, pets, you name it. So enjoy, check back often, and let me know what you think!

Should be interesting to say the least šŸ™‚