3 reasons to drop cable – and 1 BIG reason not to

Here’s the thing about television – it’s been around for decades and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Watching TV is what we Americans do. We come home from work, turn on the TV and it entertains our children. It fills the silences that we are too exhausted to fill with conversation. It connects us to world events, the latest local news, and reunites us with our favorite sitcom characters.

I’m not knocking TV – I enjoy it as much as anyone else. I just think we watch too much. Numerous studies have documented the impact that TV has on our health – all too often through our waistlines.

3 months ago – after many discussions, my husband and I decided that we should get rid of cable. At the time it was because I didn’t think it was worth the $150/mo that we were paying for it. 3 months later – I have a different perspective. Here’s what happens when you get rid of your cable TV:

1- You fill your time at home with more valuable activities.

Watching TV was never my favorite activity, but it was easy and effortless and I find now that it took up time that I could have been devoting to things I actually do get a lot of enjoyment out of. I read more now than I ever have. It’s become my go-to way to fill free time and I love it. Reading is peaceful and I very much enjoy the quiet time after a long day in the office.  I’m also exploring new hobbies – I think I’m going to take up knitting next. It can’t be that hard right?

2 – You find other ways to fill the silence.

I talk to my husband more. Real conversations about our future, our hopes and dreams. We stay at the dinner table, drinking wine, long after we’ve finished eating. We also enjoy listening to music more. We sometimes fight over who controls the music – but I love that he exposes me to new bands and music, and I hope that I do the same for him.

3 – You save $$$ 

I mentioned our cable bill of $150/mo earlier. I don’t think this is all that uncommon – we had all the movie channels and on top of that were paying for Netflix and Amazon Prime as well. We haven’t cut out TV entirely, so we still have Netflix and Amazon Prime and we also added a subscription to HBO Now and Showtime. Even doing so, we are saving over $100 each month!

Do I miss cable? Sometimes. And to be completely honest – there is one thing I must warn you about:

1- Sports

I am a diehard UGA fan. This, I did not take into consideration when cancelling cable in the middle of college football season. Not my smartest moment.

Basically – you just need to find a restaurant or bar nearby or go to a friends house, because you can not watch NCAA football without a cable subscription.

Check out my new dish-free roof:

We got these new string lights for Christmas from The Parents – loving them so far!

Goodbye 2015 and hello…strawberries?

So I’m thinking that Central Texas has decided that we won’t be participating in winter this year. Outside of one VERY brief cold spell in December, it hasn’t dropped below freezing at all. In fact, just yesterday I was painting the chicken coop and sweating in the 70 degree sunny weather.

Needless to say – all of this weather nonsense has my plants very confused. My avocado tree is blooming, so is my lime tree, and my Sequoia strawberries must believe it’s June because they’ve decided to bear some fruit. I guess I’ll get on board with this since there’s not much I can do to stop it. Strawberry jam is coming soon!

I can’t wait to eat these strawberries – they look super tasty!
Can you tell I’m excited for strawberries?

In addition to strawberries – we are hoping to harvest and enjoy some Yukon Gold potatoes very shortly as well. We purchased some seed potatoes this weekend and constructed a quick and easy potato tower to save some space in our raised beds. We constructed ours using some rebar stakes and chicken wire – super easy and only about 3 feet high. Then we lined the outside with some straw, filled the interior with potting soil, and planted our 10 seed potatoes. According to the infinite wisdom I’ve obtained from Google – this should give us 60 – 100 potatoes in just a few months!

Inside the potato tower
All along the potato tower – no reason to get excited.

Any tips/tricks out there for growing potatoes?