Sunday, October 26, 2014

Talking utilities and keeping them in check

Moving to a new house and expanding our family members meant changes, including increased costs. It has been my mission to reign those in, and keep them in check. Our first electric bill was a shocker, but we managed to get that down where it belongs.

 A bigger family means a lot of wash. If you look closely, past the green shirt, you will see the tall, forked branch that is used to hold the lines up, when weighed down by clothes. Seems to be doing the trick-it's an old tip I learned as a child, from my spinster, great aunt.
 After a week of rain, we had a ton of laundry to get caught up on. The sun porch is getting too cold and I don't want the clothes to get musty while drying indoors. This week, the heat first came on for a bit, and I've stationed the clothes racks accordingly. Meanwhile, once glorious, dry weather returned, my outdoor line was called back into service and will be on any dry day where temps are at 40 or above. Here are today's whites, blowing in the breeze. The sheets smelled sooo good.
While I did turn the heat to on this week, we also continue to wear extra layers such as my ancient, LL Bean fleece jacket. I'm certain it's far out of fashion with the print (was a thrift shop purchase anyway, years ago) but it's warm and easily washed.

Image: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-VC6MsexEb3g/TgkCHLoErrI/AAAAAAAABV8/ZHKTBmtbM20/s1600/IMG_3990.JPG

While not our actual refuse, it could easily be. Yesterday, I did my 2 week trash/recycling run and am pleased that I also tackled that escalating cost and we've got trash back down to 1 tall kitchen bag's worth a week (or 2 bags every 2 weeks which cost me $3.20 yesterday) and multiple bags (same size) of recycling. We easily recycled 4-5 bags yesterday. With my $2.10 transfer station fee (spread out on a montly basis for the once/year charge) if we continue to keep trash fees at $4 of less every 2 weeks, we remain on target. Once issue that became apparent for the suddenly very heavy trash, is the GF's cat liter was really weighing down the trash. Sicne the cat box is cleaned daily, either DS or the GF, if not DD are disposing of the small bag of waste in the community trash bin outside of work or the gas station, I am guessing. It was made clear in the lodger contract that I will not absorb any expenses related to their cat. The changes were made, my costs are back where they should be.

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