Tag Archives: Gadgets

I Bought a Beard Trimmer, and It Wasn’t for my Husband!

Living within one’s means is a tough thing to do; whether it is the inability to work, or the inability to find adequate work, many people struggle to keep their bills paid and their fridges full. This causes stress. For me, the best thing for stress is to take up a hobby. Something that you love to do that takes enough brainpower to distract you, but not so much that you get frustrated. Preferably you will enjoy a cheaper hobby like coloring or writing, but if your hobby is expensive like mine, you may need to get creative in order to enjoy your hobby without creating any additional stress.

Most people I know love to quilt. What most people don’t know is that quilting can be quite expensive. Even if you decide that all your quilts will be made from scraps and you buy a second hand machine; you will be appalled at the prices of scissors, thread, needles, mats, rulers, rotatory cutters, blades and even patterns. So in order to quilt on a budget you need to learn to cut corners. Where is the first place you should go to learn about how to save money on this hobby? Other quilters of course

Quilting boards and blogs on the internet have been a great places for me to find ways to save money. I now know which shops offer free or discount shipping and that Harbor Freight has blades that fit my rotatory cutter for a fraction of the price. My most recent discovery was my most exciting to date, and it’s one that can benefit other quilters like me with a disability.

The quilting world loves its gadgets; there are machines that cut for you, natural light lamps, and hundreds of rulers that guarantee accurate cuts, all of which come with a hefty price tag. My most recent find in the sewing gadget world seemed like a dream come true. An automatic seam ripper? Sure, it seems ridiculous, until you find yourself hours into taking apart forty blocks with one corner sewn in backwards. But the price stopped me in my tracks. This $20 dollar gadget looked a lot like a beard trimmer to me.

Sure enough, I found that the modal number for the gadget toting itself as an automatic seam ripper was really just this beard trimmer wearing a clever sticker and a heftier prices tag. I know what you’re thinking, “you did not buy a beard trimmer to quilt with!” But I did, and you know what? It works! Will I use it every day? No. Will it save me from the pain and wasted time when I make a really big mistake? Yep!

Making your favorite hobby affordable may take some investigation. It may also take doing things that seem a little crazy sometimes. But in the end you will be glad you took the time to find a more affordable option, that way you can enjoy your hobby without feeling guilty.

What’s the weirdest gadget you have ever bought to save time?

DVR, Where Have You Been All My Life?

We are all busy people. We have family and friend obligations, we have jobs to go to – full-time, part-time or freelance – and if you don’t work, if you have a disability you’re likely still busy or feel so at least. Having a disability can do that to you.

We have appointments galore. Doctor’s appointments, therapist appointments, wheelchair appointments and don’t get me started on having to stick to a daily PCA schedule, which you mine as well call an appointment too.

Our days go just as fast as yours, and many of us don’t even have kids. My disability is like an insolent child I must constantly tend to anyways. Having an actual kid would certainly do me in. It really would.

My days can be rough. There are good days and bad, this is why I’ve fallen in love with my new friend. She tells me fabulous stories and keeps me entertained and she’s there whenever I need her; like a true best friend should be. Only problem, my new friend doesn’t have a voice or ears to listen with, but no matter, as long as she’s there everything is peachy.

I’m speaking of course of my DVR; my Directv + DVR receiver to be specific that has totally changed my world, well at the very least changed the way I consume media. Everyone seems to be going crazy for Hulu lately, cutting off their cable ties for good, but DVR to me could never be replaced by something like Hulu. TV has blossomed in the last 6 years and I’m all about it. On my TV and yes, even the commercials (some of them).

Each morning when I wake up or at night after work, I’ll check my DVR to see the list of what it’s recently recorded. It’s like a present to unwrap each time you hit the “Guide” button. It’s awesome, and I won’t lie – I’m all about simple pleasures in life. Who isn’t? Cheap entertainment. I can’t remember the last time I went to the movies. That is how much my little living room DVR machine has changed my world.

My shows set to record of course run on the feminine side of things: Fashion Police, Chopped, Project Runway, Downtown Abbey, Reign, Long Island Medium, House Hunters, Millionaire Matchmaker. But they’re also loved by all sexes too: Treehouse Masters, Pawn Stars, Comic Book Men, The Walking Dead, The Haunting of…, Oddities, The Dead Files and even (guilty cringe) Duck Dynasty.

What can I say? TV has become exponentially better. Maybe it’s because people my age are finally making the content decisions at the networks I adore (eh-hem Vikings on the History channel = brilliant). There is just so much good to watch. If you were to get really sick with a long-term illness that required lots of bedrest, right now would be the time. Helloooo DVR in bed.

Of course all of this DVR talk makes me sound dreadfully boring, and maybe my life isn’t as exciting as it once was (getting older will do that to you), but I’m ok with that. Again, another likely sign I’m getting older. What’s my DVR recording again?

I think the beauty of the DVR as a person with a disability is simply how it records everything you love, taking the stress out of live viewing, which can be so hard when you have a disability. Who has time to think about this kind of stuff anymore? No, we need our TVs to remember this for us.

Just know, if you’ve been deathly curious of DVR for years but have never made the switch, now is the time. I rent my DVR receiver for only an additional $10/month and it’s worth every penny; every hay penny even. Screw handguns; you’ll have to pry my DVR from my cold, dead hands.

Are you a DVR fan or could you care less?

Links in the post

Directv + DVR

Photo courtesy of Flickr CC

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