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TV on the Cheap

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Any idea what this might be?  It’s an HDTV antenna!  No, really.  My husband MADE this out of scrap 2 x 4 and old wire hangers and guess what – it works BETTER than the antenna’s you can buy anywhere.  Cost us $5!!!!  This is an easy-ish DIY project, but it is not our own idea – we found it  at

Too ugly for your tastes?  No worries – it’s hidden up in our attic!  We live about 45 miles from Austin, so we’re close enough – even with all of the pine trees.

But, why ditch our satelite TV that we’d had for years to go old school even with a fancy antenna?  Because at $85/month, it just wasn’t making sense to pay for it anymore… with the antenna, we get all of the networks for FREE (except for Fox), which includes PBS for the invaluable Sesame Street!

But, fear not, we still have a huge selection… because we also bought a Roku box.  A Roku box is a little black box that hooks up to the internet and streams TV through that to your TV set.  We get Netflix and Hulu plus for less than $20 a month and have more and better viewing options than we ever did with the blood suckers.   And, it also has lots of free “channels” – like Winamp and Pandora… so we also listen to the radio via the internet on the TV.  🙂

It does require that you have high speed internet – we have DSL and had to upgrade to the 3 meg “high speed” version… but even still, it only added $5/month to our costs as we already had the DSL at our house.

Hulu plus has the entire season of Lost on it (the first show we watched!), and Netflix now has Sesame Street!  This is especially wonderful as Rosie is currently sick with a fever… and we’re watching lots and lots and lots of Street.

As we continue to try to cut the budget, we’re also trying not to totally deprive ourselves… this is a great option for this situation.  In fact, we realize that we like the Roku MORE than the satellite and have no intentions of ever going back.

By the way, I only link to these products because we really like them – and think that you might, too.  Not because we get any type of monetary compensation from it.  Just so you know!


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