I cut the cord, now what?

I work with about 20 women who all love to hear what new, weird thing I did this weekend (I think I am the sideshow act for them, “Cara doesn’t use paper towels? Cara has chickens in her backyard?”). When I told them that I didn’t have cable, many of them were so aghast they didn’t know what to say. It didn’t make sense to them, the thought of an entire world outside of the cable box.

Growing up, my parents had cable and would flip through HUNDREDS of channels before settling on some odd show that no-one had ever heard of. I moved into my current home and I thought about getting rid of the TV altogether. Like most moms, I like that 30 minute vacation when I let my kids watch a show once in a while. Since I like to watch a little mindless drivel as well while I do chores, I decided to look into some different ways to watch TV that didn’t involve spending $40 a month on cable.

Hard Copies.

I bought a used VHS/DVD player at Goodwill for $10, it’s great for watching old Disney movies (especially since I can buy the VHS’ for 25 cents at the thrift store). I kept the player but got rid of most of the movies since they take up so much space for my taste. I kept the ones that we like to watch on movie night: Anne of Green Gables, Mary Poppins, etc. There is always the local library too, my daughter gets really excited when she gets to pick out books AND a movie.

Direct Hook-Up.

For $5.50 you can buy a simple HDMI cable and plug it straight from your handy-dandy laptop to your TV (as long as it’s not from 1999). I like having the internet at my fingertips and signed up for Netflix, since there are a lot of great shows that change often.

I don’t like having to give up my laptop since I get the most done while I watch mindless TV. I had to find something else after only a week of this method. Which led to my final resolution of the issue:

Amazon Fire Stick.

Or any variation of this method (this is just what I personally use). I ordered my Fire stick and when it arrived I just plugged it into the wall, then into my TV. It immediately started set-up with my TV and all I had to do was pick my Wi-Fi and enter my password. I can watch TV or listen to music at any time. Once we get home I turn on the tunes and listen while working around the house. Warning: it also links up to your photos that you store on Amazon and switches to a screen saver of them when it goes on standby (nothing like walking into your living room and seeing yourself on a 40″ TV, especially if it has good graphics, yeesh!).

Do you watch TV? What is your preferred method without having cable?

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