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The Frugal Life News
November 11, 2004 Edition

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A Note From Randal
Hello Everyone,

It seems like during this time of year, it can either bring happiness or lots of sadness. The holiday season should be a relaxing and peaceful time for all of us. However, we often make it something else that becomes unbearable at times.

In our Frugal Holiday Section that we started in the last issue we will endeavor to give some helpful tips that we hope will help you to have a more peaceful holiday season. Please send us your tips and any testimonies you might want to share. We really want to help you have a different holiday season this year.

Thanks for all of your sharing of our ezines and websites.

Frugally yours,


Frugal Finances

Nag, Nag, Nag = $, $, $

Don’t you just hate it when your home repair technician says, “This is gonna cost ya. But you know… it would have lasted a lot longer if ‘someone’ had done regular maintenance on it.”

Of course, we all know who “someone” is. And we all know, “someone,” is busier than a one-armed paperhanger in a windstorm. Unless you’re like my Quality Assurance Engineer friend, Ed, you don’t have a calendar with scheduled maintenance tasks for everything from your Forced Air Heating System to cleaning your patio furniture.

Unfortunately, unless you remember and schedule the time, you’ll end up paying lots of money to fix something inexpensive maintenance may have prevented, or postponed.

It’s easy to understand how things can fall into disrepair. There are at least 80 to 90 owner maintainable systems in the typical home, each with their unique maintenance schedule and maintenance process.

If you’re going to keep up with all of this, you’re going to need timely and informative reminders.

The people behind Home-Wizard, the Interactive Home Maintenance Guide, have created a website:

which, among other things, emails registered users Automatic Maintenance Reminders according to their home profile.

Just go to their site and click the Automatic Reminders link to signup for this FREE service. You provide a User Name, Password, and email address, and you’re signed up.

Next, you’re provided a checklist to describe your home’s features. You’ll find six major categories – Heating/Cooling, Appliances, Furnishings, Structural, Outside, and Other.

In addition to timely, season appropriate email reminders describing specific maintenance steps you can also visit this website and see all of your current-month scheduled maintenance.

If you get really excited about maintenance and want to see future maintenance activities, you can select the desired month and it will show you upcoming tasks.

If you don’t know how to perform a task, or need a refresher, click the task and a window will launch with pictures, a Description of what to do, the Rationale for doing it, and the Timing for doing it.

For example, did you know you should flip your mattress every 6 months?

You might have guessed this, but did you also know it should be done in February and August? I didn’t either.

In May and November you should rotate your mattress 180° so that the head of the mattress ends up at the foot of the bed. Doing so prolongs the life of your mattress and helps it recover from uncomfortable grooves created by constant body pressure.

If you’re interested in steps which create a more energy efficient home, this website allows you to explore all of your homes features for specific energy efficiency improvements and tells you what and how to do them.

You might think that signing up for this service would result in a blizzard of unsolicited email from home maintenance providers. According to their privacy statement, the only emails you receive are your maintenance reminders.

So, you get a little electronic nagging about things you should be doing to preserve the value of your most expensive asset for FREE.

You’ll be busy, you’ll save some serious cash, and your spouse will think you’re pretty handy.

Greg Moore is the Architect of the Debt Freedom System,
“DebtIntoWealth — Lessons from My Journey to Debt Freedom.”
For your FREE Lesson 1, Click Here:

Free Lesson #1 – Debt Freedom Course

Pay off all of your debt in 5-7 years using the money you already make. Find out why financial guru and best-selling author, Suze Orman, is advising her millions of followers to “Pay Everything Off as Fast As Possible!”

Frugal Home Communications –
Long Distance, Internet Service and Cellular Phone Service

Long Distance, Internet Access & Cellular Phone Options

3.9 Cent Long Distance With No Access Numbers to Dial
14.95 Internet Access
Shop the Plans for Cellular Phones
No hidden fees or charges!
Long Distance, Internet
Access, and Cellular Phone Options

Frugal Entertainment

Frugal Entertainment

Watching television you own is pretty much free entertainment, but when you are out and about or in a restaurant with friends wanting to talk and a tv is blaring away, wouldn’t you love to be able to just turn it off with your own remote?

You can! With the little gadget TV-B-Gone. Here’s more about it:

New Key Chain Tech Gadget Turns Off Any Television

How: TV-B-Gone™ universal remote controls generates the ‘off’ power codes for every model of US, Asian and European televisions. Hangs discreetly on a key chain.

Why: Because a tv that is powered on is like second-hand smoke. It fills the room with its sights and sounds, impinging on everyone in the room. If someone were smoking a cigar in a public place, you would probably leave or ask them to extinguish it. With TV-B-GoneTM, you have the power to turn any tv off, with others’ approval.

Who: TV-B-Gone™ universal remote controls is produced by Cornfield Electronics, Inc., a San Francisco technology firm. ‘I consider TV-B-Gone a personal safety device,’ says inventor Mitch Altman.

Here’s a link to the FAQ:

Frugal How-To Protect Yourself From Burglars

Ways You Can Protect Your Home From Burglars – By Dr. Charlotte Gorman*

Take precautions to protect your home and possessions from burglary. Even if you have homeowners insurance, replacing what is stolen or damaged could cost you a considerable amount of money out of your pocket–maybe more than it would have cost you to do some things to make your home more secure. (However, don’t make your home so buurglar-proof that you can’t get out quickly if you need to.) Below are some things you can do to help protect your home and your belongings. Some of the suggestions will cost you nothing, while others will require only a minimum outlay of money.

1. Write down the emergency telephone numbers of the local police and county sheriff’s office and the numbers of several nearby neighbors. Keep the numbers by your telephone(s). Having the numbers handy can decrease the time it takes you to call for help.

2. If you live in a rural area, don’t assume that you are immune from burglaries. You are not.

3. Protect your home during the day as you would at night. Burglaries also occur during daylight hours.

4. Check into the possibility of organizing a Neighborhood Watch where you

*Dr. Charlotte Gorman is an Extension Agent, Family & Consumer Sciences, Texas Cooperative Extension, Texas A & M University System. She is the author of The Frugal Mind, The Little Book of Living Frugal, and Speak for

For the rest of the article go to:

Make Your Own Home And Beauty Products
Bath, Beauty, Perfumes, Cleaning and Air Freshner/Deodorizer

Essential oil kits allow you to make your own safe non-chemical home and beauty products. You’ll save a lot and feel better about making your home less toxic for yourself, children and pets. The Starter Pack has a Recipe Guide with tons of ideas.
Make Your Own Home
and Beauty Products

Frugal Holidays

Can Money Buy What Matters This Holiday?

If you were asked to describe the ideal holiday season, chances are you would include the company of loved ones, good food, fun and relaxation, and maybe an inch or two of snow. It seems so simple, but too often the holidays exhaust rather than uplift us. Do you sometimes feel trapped by the shopping, spending and frenzied preparations?

Our latest holiday poll showed that more than half of all Americans (54%) feel that spending less money on gifts will actually allow them to focus more on the true meaning of the holidays, and nearly four out of five Americans surveyed (77%) said that they would like to have a more simplified holiday this year.

Continue this article at the site where lots of information, downloads and links are available to make your holiday what YOU want it to be.

Holiday Use of Essential Oils

Essential oils will make your home smell wonderful this holiday season without the dangerous air freshner chemicals that have been in the news. The big bonus is that you also get the anti-microbial properties of essential plant oils so you can kill germs throughout your home without bleach and toxic cleaning products.

The AromaBall is a handy plug-in appliance with a ceramic plate that holds a small pad on which you add essential oils. Easy-to-use as a night light.

Get more info and/or purchase here:
AromaBall for
Deodorizer and Anti-Microbial Home Defense

Frugal Pets

Herbal Heartworm Program and Prevention

Robin Sockness works with pet owners with an individualized program and has currently worked with over 300 dogs. Herbs are safer and less expensive so it’s a win-win situation for all. Prevention programs are available also. Read more about it here:
Herbal Heartworm
Program & Prevention

Free Information, Free Ecards, and Pet Foods Too!

Healthy Pet Corner provides lots of information and links for birds, cats, dogs, horses, rabbits, and reptiles.
Healthy Pet Corner – Your Pet

Frugal Tips From Our Subscribers

Save on Car Repairs

A full tank of gas helps save wear and tear on your fuel pump, which is
located in the gas tank and depends on the gas for lubrication. When your
car’s fuel tank is less than a quarter full, you risk damage to the pump.

What’s Going On In The Forum

Maybe you can help these folks out with a few suggestions? Or post some of your own questions. LOG-IN TO POST Here’s the link:

Questions Needing Answers At The Forum

Pets Forum
1. We have a problem with our cats throwing up their hairballs on our throw rugs.  They don’t like to do this on the hardwood floors.  We give them hairball treatment and brush them daily, but they still have vomit up hairballs occasionally.  The hairballs stain our rugs and are difficult to clean.  Are there any rugs out there that cats dislike?

2. Does anyone have any suggestions on making toys from ordinary household items for my 2 puppies?

Home Based Business Ideas

Home Spa Party Plan – Make Bath and Body Products

Have you noticed how popular bath and pampering products have become? The HomeSpa Party Plan taps into that craze. Guests at HomeSpa parties will learn how to make bath salts, personalized perfumes, body spritzers and more using essential oils, while you make a nice income from Nature’s Sunshine.
Home Spa Party

Flint River Ranch – Oven Baked Pet Foods

If you have pets, they’ll love Flint River and you can make an income providing good pet foods and other pet products to friends, neighbors and your family. Pets keep eating, so customers keep buying. If you love animals, this is a very rewarding home-based business. With only 100 volume a month you can earn 19% on all sales. Websites are not yet available.
Flint River Ranch

Nature’s Sunshine Products – Herbs and Supplements

If you’ve been a natural health nut, you have a lot of information to share. Earn an income selling over 500 natural health products, beverages, essential oils, skin care systems, water filters, and more. Websites are also available for $15.95/month (plus an initial $19.95 set-up fee).
Nature’s Sunshine

Long Distance, Internet Access & Cellular Phone Options

3.9 Cent Long Distance With No Access Numbers to Dial
14.95 Internet Access
Shop the Plans for Cellular Phones
No hidden fees or charges!
Long Distance, Internet
Access, and Cellular Phone Options

Life’s Abundance Foods and Supplements

Life’s Abundance products by Dr. Jane Bicks and Dr. Barry Sears who developed the Zone Diet for Overweight Dogs. Besides dog, cat and horse products, they have a non-toxic line of cleaning products – safe for pets and children. Websites available for $10.95/month (plus an initial $20 set-up fee).
Healthy Pet

ZoneNet Health Products

ZoneNet products are produced by the same company that produces Life’s Abundance. ZoneNet products are backed by the research and wisdom of Dr. Barry Sears one of America’s most trusted health and wellness experts. Their mission is to to develop superior functional food products that help people achieve long-term wellness.

Check out his unique products at
ZoneNet Health Products

Legal Disclaimer
Information in The Frugal Life News (TFL) has been derived from sources believed accurate and reliable. In no event shall *The Frugal Life,* Randal Watkins, or the TFL staff be liable for any damages whatsoever resulting from any action arising in connection with the use of information herein.

TFL does not knowingly accept ads from advertisers deemed detrimental to TFL’s readers, however, publication of an ad in TFL does not constitute an endorsement for such product or service.

There is no remuneration for suggestions, tips, or ideas submitted by readers. All suggestions, tips, and ideas, submitted for publication in The Frugal Life, become the property of The Frugal Life, notwithstanding similar rights of the reader submitting such suggestions, tips, or ideas. TFL publishes readers’ names with their suggestions, tips, and ideas unless a reader requests otherwise at the time of the submission.