The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

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The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:12 pm

For those of us who like to pinch nickles until they scream. Wink

Like I said in the other thread, I'm looking into getting a Magic Jack instead of our land line. It cost $20 for the hardware, $20 for a year's subscription, and about $7.00 shipping and handling. It should be $20 a year after this. My friend has one and uses it all the time. It cuts out every now and then, but it will save us a monthly fee and it also come with call waiting/voice mail, etc. Things we have to pay extra for on our phone. (We don't have them, but it would be nice to.) The downsides are that we have to change our phone number, and you have to have the computer on in order to make and receive calls.

I'll let you know how we like it, and if we think it's a worthwhile change.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by shadowflame1974 on Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:19 pm

Another option is Skype, you can get the montly service for I believe $3 a month and call anywhere in the US and Canada.
I have to have a landline, otherwise no computer. Sad

And as far as cell phones go, pay as you go is the way to go for me. I don't use mine a lot, so is more economical for now. No commitment no contract

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:23 pm

I love Skype, but I've never used it except computer to computer. It's free that way, but don't you have to pay out to call to other phones? How much is that, do you know?


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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by shadowflame1974 on Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:25 pm

Skype Subscriptions
Looks like you can get it as cheaply as $2.99 a month

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by EffieCollins on Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:26 pm

Ooooh... pinching pennies.

One thing many people don't think of: buying a coffee. You stop at the convenience store or coffee shop, thinking that couple of dollars won't save much. Oh but, if you take that three dollars and multiply by seven, and that's only giving you ONE coffee a day mind you, that's 21 bucks. 21 multiplied by 4? 84 bucks a month.

A can of Folgers is 6 to 8 dollars. Even if you buy two cans of coffee a month, you're still saving 68 dollars. A travel mug can be gotten fairly cheaply at Walmart. And home brew is better anyhow.

I admit... I'm a smoker. I smoke quite a bit. I started on Wellbutrin and had panic attacks three or four days after starting, so now I'm trying to figure out how to quit with no help cause I can't afford the patches, gums or lozenges. That would save me tons of money.

Another thing some people don't think of when trying to cutting costs is their hot water heater and television. Flip the breaker for your water heater every night and unplug your TV and microwave. Your electric bill will go down. Even when "off" there's a power suck that still costs you money.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Tall Tyrion on Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:41 am

You could always save dryer lint and make a pillow out of it.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by shadowflame1974 on Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:35 pm

Actually if you got a press you could make paper out of it, but that's another story.

One thing that I have found lately is gas consumption - and no, not the kind that clears a room.
Gas isn't cheap, and it isn't going to get cheaper in the near future if ever.
Proper maintenance of your vehicle will save you a lot. Keeping the oil changed, (no that doesn't always mean 3,000 miles or 3 months but it depends on your driving) checking the air pressure in your tires, and changing spark plugs. (all these things you CAN do yourself so saves you money that way too!)
Another HUGE difference is your speed. The faster you drive, the faster the gauge goes down. Seriously, slow 5 mph below speedlimit, and you will see a difference. I have!
Also if you have a choice between a curvy hilly road and a slightly longer but straighter one, take the longer.
In two weeks I have spent less in gas and though it takes me slightly longer to get to work, saving just a few bucks a week has helped!

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kuro on Sat Jan 22, 2011 11:46 pm

Have an really old beanbag chair that's falling apart? Don't throw it out. Open up one of the seams and take the beads out. You can reuse these in new pillows or (as I did) a draft dodger (the thing you stick under your door to keep cold air out). If you do use it for a draft dodger, you're probably going to have to weight it. I used pea gravel we had on hand. You could probably use sand, gravel, or saw dust to help weight it. Draft dodgers can help save a lot on heating, especially if you can't pay to have your old leaky windows and doors replaced or sealed.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by EffieCollins on Sun Jan 23, 2011 4:46 pm

Oh! And along that vein... winterizing your home. Most people do the whole making sure there are no cracks in seals around doors and windows. However, during winter months, most of my windows are covered in plastic from the top sill to the bottom one. Cut strips of cardboard to staple through around the sills. It ensures a more secure hold on the plastic and makes removal easier.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by shadowflame1974 on Sun Jan 23, 2011 8:24 pm

EffieCollins wrote:Oh! And along that vein... winterizing your home. Most people do the whole making sure there are no cracks in seals around doors and windows. However, during winter months, most of my windows are covered in plastic from the top sill to the bottom one. Cut strips of cardboard to staple through around the sills. It ensures a more secure hold on the plastic and makes removal easier.

I go one better. I have a few windows that let in a lot of air. I got a few sheets of insulation and cut to fit them. Once in, I sealed around them with that spray foam. Not pretty, but they do let in light and that corner of he house isn't freezing in the winter or sweltering in the summer now.
And if you don't care to open those windows (or they are stuck like mine) take plastic sheeting like when you paint, cut to fit the windows and use double sided carpet tape. I haven't had any problems with them since I put them up 3 years ago.


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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:44 pm

My new favorite thing? This site:

http://www.thesimpledollar.com/the-one-hour-project/

Monday I might call on my credit card and ask for a reduced rate. Or stay home and write all day. I dunno. Wink

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Wed Mar 30, 2011 1:14 pm

So I've been making my own laundry detergent for a while and I love it! I don't think I'll ever go back, for real. I did a post on it with pictures and the super easy recipe.

Make Your Own Laundry Detergent


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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kenwood on Wed Mar 30, 2011 4:45 pm

Oh, I bought the MagicJack, then returned it. Too much gray area on whether or not they can listen to your calls.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Shiney on Wed Mar 30, 2011 4:47 pm

They listen to your calls....and they masturbate while they're doing it.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kerr on Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:27 am

Interesting Mercedes, making your own laundry soap. I think I'm going to have to give that a try. If you do say one load a day, I wonder how long that ice cream tubful will last? Seems like maybe three or longer.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:18 pm

I don't know, Kerr! Forever. It lasts absolutely forever. We do several loads a day (my son is fixated on the washer and dryer, so we have the cleanest sheets, drapes, shower curtains, comforter covers, etc around) and I barely make a dent in the tub.

I also put it in cute glass jars that I pick up for cheap at second hand stores, tie some raffia around it with the recipe, and give it to some of my friends for gifts. Vegas is in a horrifying economic slump, so it's something practical and charming, and most people end up making it for themselves.

Ken, I find that I mostly don't plug the MagicJack in. I dig it because the messages come right to your email, and I can return the calls at will. I hear what you're saying about people listening in, however. They are unclear about that.

I so dig life without every Tom, Dick, and Harry having my phone number.

Shiney, remind me NEVER to call you. Ever.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kerr on Sat Apr 02, 2011 8:15 pm

I hear what your saying Mercedes. Michigan here is number one statewide leading the recession in jobs leaving and folks without. Happily, those kind of gifts are my favorites. I always feel like the giver put a little of themselves into it.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Apr 07, 2011 6:24 pm

In the case of horror writers, LITERALLY putting themselves into it! Ha ha ha...er. *clears throat*

Okay, so here's free computer paper after coupon and rebate. I'm so down with this. The offer is only good until April 9th.

http://thekrazycouponlady.com/2011/04/03/free-paper-at-staples-again/

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kerr on Thu Apr 07, 2011 6:31 pm

Cool.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Apr 07, 2011 6:40 pm

Super timely because I have about three pieces of paper left. I just printed out a manuscript. Woo hoo!

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Tall Tyrion on Thu Apr 07, 2011 7:26 pm

It's free except for the four hour round trip to the closest Staples. lol

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Apr 07, 2011 8:28 pm

It's free except for the one mile walk to the closet Staples. Man, sometimes I love living in the city! Very Happy

We had to go over ten miles to pick up a newspaper when I was a kid, so I totally sympathize.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Tall Tyrion on Thu Apr 07, 2011 9:28 pm

The city does have it's advantages... Smile

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Mercedes on Thu Apr 07, 2011 9:48 pm

Sometimes.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

Post by Kerr on Sat Apr 09, 2011 11:59 am

Oh for the days when we are well paid writers, or they decide to sell cars run on sunlight.

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Re: The Shock Totem Cheapskate Thread

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