Can Your Phone Help You Around The Homestead?

My Android Phone

Image by Mark Lincoln via Flickr

Wouldn’t it be great to organize your busy life and keep track of all the important things that you need to do and remember? Wouldn’t it also be great to have a journal or a notepad with you at all times so that you could keep a list of items you find around your home or farm that require attention, without lugging around a pencil and paper? I mean, a list will probably just end up misplaced anyhow right? What if you could collect and organize all of your important information so that you always had it at your fingertips no matter where you were? Well guess what, just grab your smartphone or tablet because you can do all that and more with one small application. It’s even free!

So what application do I need?

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How Do You Chop Your Firewood?

253/365 [chopping wood]

Image by Difei Li via Flickr

As the seasons change and the air temperatures plummet, those of us with pot belly stoves or wood burning fireplaces find ourselves digging into our firewood supply and heating our homes with nice cozy fires. It not only saves a few bucks on the monthly heating bill, but it just feels right.

So this begs the real question…

How do you chop your firewood?

Buying pre-cut wood
Do you buy your firewood already cut and split? This is fine as long as you have a few hundred dollars a year to spend restocking your firewood supply. Hopefully you’re buying it by the cord from a firewood dealer and not by the armful at the supermarket. That can be expensive!

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Can You Learn From Your Electric Smart Meter?

Smart Meter
Image by Duke Energy via Flickr

What exactly is so smart about electric smart meters, and what can you learn from them?

Unlike, traditional electric meters, smart meters take advantage of a series of wireless technologies in order to communicate electric use data all the way from the residence to the power company. It’s with this advanced two-way communication that smart meters are able to provide such an array of benefits over traditional meters.

Traditional meters have analog dials that require employees of the power company to dispatch to each residence in order to collect electric use data. Not only are the dials difficult to read, but resource constraints often result in electric use data being estimated on the consumer bill. Smart meters also have a digital display that shows the electric use data as the actual numeric value, allowing for simple reading by the consumer. Electric use data is transmitted wirelessly and securely back to the power company in 15 minute intervals which equates to accurate billing for the consumer.

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Power Up Your Christmas With Alternative Energy

A Danish Christmas tree illuminated with burni...
Image via Wikipedia

If you’re like me, you probably don’t enjoy the inflated electric bill that goes hand in hand with your beautiful Christmas lights and holiday decorations. There is no better time then now to start looking into ways we can all lower our carbon footprint while shaving a few dollars off those dreaded electric bills. The technology is here, alternative energy is available, and some of the power saving solutions are simply wild!

I’m not quite ready for alternative energy, but I’d still like to lower my electric bill. What can I do?

For those that are not ready to harness up alternative energy sources just to power up their Christmas lights, there are still a couple of good ways to save some power and knock a few bucks off the old electric bill. First of all, with all the hustle and bustle during the holidays, it’s easy to forget to turn those lights off. Make sure to use timers to limit the amount of time your lights stay lit. Another great way to save energy is to invest in LED Christmas lights. LED Christmas lights are not only more durable then those fragile incandescent bulbs, but they last 1000’s of hours longer and use up to 33% less power. LED lights also produce less heat then incandescent bulbs, which makes them much safer on your Christmas tree. Between some energy efficient LED lights and automated timers, you’re sure to save a few bucks on the electric bill this year.

I’m ready to go green this Christmas, so where do I start?

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Simple Organic Clothing On The Cheap!

If organic living is an interest of yours, than the following instructional video is a must see for you. It’s also guaranteed to help brighten your day.

Proponents claim that while you may not be the best dressed at this years holiday party, you will rest easy knowing that you have not only lowered your carbon footprint, but you have also avoided contribution into any child slave-labor often associated with the manufacturing of clothing.

Watch how one farmer discovers a simple way to produce 100% organic clothing using the resources found on his farm.

WARNING: Please do not try this at home. This video is purely for entertainment purposes only. Any attempt to reproduce this type of organic clothing process is extremely dangerous as you run a high risk of snagging your “kibbles-n-bits” in the machinery. There is also a good chance that you will encounter a rather ungraceful alfalfa enema during the process, whether you like it or not. Again, please do not try this at home!

“Your sense of humor is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.”

 

~ Paul E. McGhee, Ph.D.

Did you find this post amusing? Leave a comment letting us know if it brightened your day.

Is There A SPOT In Your Future For A Personal GPS Tracking Device?

Hiking in Sunnmøre, Part 3: Skårasalen
Image by Severin Sadjina via Flickr

Are you an outdoor adventurer that loves to talk about where your travels are taking you, just as much as you enjoy exploring new frontiers? Maybe you’re just a concerned individual that takes comfort into knowing the whereabouts of your loved ones and that they’re safe. In either case, a SPOT just might be a little piece of technology that can help you stay in touch with others.

What is a SPOT and how does it work?

SPOT is a feature packed personal GPS tracking device that’s small enough to fit into your pocket. While cell phones are often plagued with poor coverage in remote areas, SPOT communicates over satellite, keeping you connected with friends and family from virtually anywhere in the world.

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