Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”- Mark Twain

Friday, November 18, 2011

New Goal: Saving money in DISNEY WORLD!

I've wanted to go back to Disney World for years. The last time I was there was about eight years ago, and I've been longing to go back ever since. After years of suggesting to DH that we go, he's finally agreed. We've booked for nine nights, starting the last week of February!

From what I remember, everything in Disney is expensive. We chose to stay at a non-Disney hotel, which is on Disney property, (one of the few that are in the Downtown Disney area). The price was excellent and I will have family staying there at the same time for part of our trip. Since the resort we chose doesn't offer the Dining Package, we will be on our own to purchase food. This scares me a bit, because I remember the price of a hot dog being unreal.

I'd like some input on money saving ideas in Disney. Does anyone out there have any tricks or tips? I'm looking for money saving ideas on everything from transportation from the airport, park tickets, to most of all food. We would like to also take in Universal Studios, but aren't sure of the best way to get there.

I'm so excited for this! We've been saving for awhile, and now it's finally in motion! Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Family that Lives (Close) Together, Surfs Together.

I live in a rural community in NS. We have one option for high speed internet, and it's pricey. The monthly bill is $55.00 (taxes included) for mediocre internet that stops working at least once a day. It isn't blazing speed, but it sure beats dial-up.

For a few years I gave in and subscribed. I wanted to keep up-to-date with the world and to keep my sanity. I do enjoy it, and would hate to live without it.

I recently moved. As it turns out, my new neighbors are my parents! (Oh, rural living...) This is both convenient and not convenient at the same time, (since they now can know everything I do). However, I must say it does come with it's perks.

Last spring they too decided to get with the times and get high speed internet. Knowing less about internet set up than I do, I was given the task of purchasing the wireless router. Knowing my father, I made sure to get "the best of the best" out there, otherwise he wouldn't have been satisfied (and probably would have made me return it). Luckily I found one on sale, and for $80.00 he was happy.

Fast forward to last month, and I move in next door. We had to disconnect our internet at our old home, and to have it connected at our new home would cost another $99.00. This is the same price as the initial set up. A little peeved about this, I decided to cancel the internet account altogether. My thought was that I could always change my mind in a month or two once we get settled in, and it wouldn't cost me anything extra. Actually it would save me the $55.00 that I didn't spend for that month of internet service. We'd be unpacking most evenings after work that month anyway, so the chances of us missing it were slim.

Just for the fun of it one day, I opened my laptop to see if there were any signals that I could pick up. Low and behold, my parent's signal was a whooping four out of five bars! More than enough that I would need to check my Facebook and email once a day. Now I'm thankful that my father required "the best" router!

I talked to my mother, and told her about my discovery. I suggested that I would gladly pay half of her internet bill if she would give me the password (which truthfully, I remembered anyway since I set it up). She was thrilled about it, since $27.50 a month for moody internet sounds a heck of a lot better than $55.00! So that was that, we both had internet.

Mind you, there are times that this set up isn't ideal (if I wanted to use the internet in the far end of my home, or during a huge storm), but I remind myself that for $27.50 a month in savings plus the $99.00 installation fee, I can learn to deal with it.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Saving Money with Laundry!

My power bill is something I dread. In Nova Scotia, it is not uncommon for someone to get a $900 power bill in the coldest months of the year. There are many things that you can do to cut the steady flow of money being handed to Nova Scotia Power. Our biggest money saver is that we have wood heat in our home, so we don't have to use the electric heat. This cuts the bill in half, if not more. We've had this type of heat for years, so I started wondering what more I could do to lower this horrible drain on our finances. We've replaced the fridge (which you can read about in an earlier post), switched to energy saving light bulbs, starting doing laundry in cold water, etc. However, the biggest savings I have seen since we switched to wood heat has been the use (or lack of) of our dryer in the winter.

The month of January and February I decided to stop replying on the laundry dryer. Normally we would do one load of laundry per day, so it was on for about 45-50 minutes each and every day, when it was too cold to hang clothes outside. I went to my local hardware store and picked up two clothes drying racks, for $14.99 each, plus tax.

Every evening I would do my one load of laundry, and when it was done hang the clothes on the racks before I went to bed. We made sure to put the racks in the same room as the wood stove for faster drying (obviously a safe distance away from the wood stove). When I woke up in the morning, the clothes were 90% to 100% dry. I took them off the rack, and put them in the dry for 10 minutes with a dryer sheet for a "touch up", so they still were warm, wrinkle free and smelling lovely.

When my latest power bill arrived, by only making this one change we figured out the savings to be approx. $60.00 (for two months). Not only did my clothes racks pay for themselves, they doubled their value in the first bill alone!