gadgets http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/1050/all en-US 5 Money Saving Travel Gadgets http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-saving-travel-gadgets <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-saving-travel-gadgets" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_travel_computer_000014260697.jpg" alt="Woman using money saving travel gadgets" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There are countless gadgets out there that can help you travel safer, easier, and more efficiently, but there are only a few that can really save you a lot of money while on the road. Here is a list of my favorite travel gadgets. Many of them can actually pay themselves off in no time at all!</p> <h2>1. Handpresso</h2> <p>This portable espresso maker probably paid itself off in the first month that I traveled with it. You can pick one up on Amazon for around $140, and basically all you need to pour a perfect cup of espresso coffee is hot water and about 30&ndash;35 compressions of the built-in pump.</p> <p>I picked up the <a href="http://amzn.to/1VBrx9k">Handpresso</a> for my travels through Europe, where small cups of espresso can cost as much as &euro;2 each. Instead of spending that much at a cafe, I buy a 250 gram bag of <a href="http://amzn.to/1VBrYAr">Lavazza coffee</a> for &euro;2 and it's good for around 35 cups of coffee.</p> <p>That means that after going through one bag (which usually takes about two weeks), I've saved myself over &euro;68 ($75). If you prefer lattes, you'll save even more money because you can buy milk for cheap at the supermarket and make a latte at home for about 25 cents, but in an Italian cafe a latte will probably cost you around &euro;4!</p> <p>Bonus Gadget: If you're worried about not having a kettle in your hotel room for boiling water, consider traveling with a portable coil water heater as well.</p> <h2>2. Luggage Scale</h2> <p>Baggage fees are getting more and more ridiculous on airlines around the world. The idea of having one free checked bag is slowly fading into distant memory, especially with North American carriers.</p> <p>This means that every pound you put under the plane counts. Instead of walking up to the check-in counter with that dreaded feeling of not knowing if your bags are overweight, pick up a <a href="http://amzn.to/1WcVI5E">luggage scale</a> on Amazon for under $15.</p> <p>It only takes one flight to pay this thing off. Usually if you're over by just two pounds you'll have to pay $15 extra, so by weighing your suitcase before arriving at the airport, you can take out that heavy sweater and wear it on the plane instead of paying a surcharge for overweight checked luggage.</p> <h2>3. Luggage GPS</h2> <p>As someone who has recently had his luggage lost by an airline, I can't recommend this gadget enough. Usually if an airline misplaces your baggage, they'll locate it eventually, but it can take days. When Turkish lost my bags earlier this year, I had to buy a whole new wardrobe in order to survive the cold Istanbul winter.</p> <p>Had I tagged my bag with a <a href="http://amzn.to/1SXAHqI">luggage GPS</a>, I could have used the app to tell Turkish that it was sitting in New York, given them the exact coordinates and I probably would have had my bag back in a day, rather than a week.</p> <p>You can also tag your purse, golf clubs, and even your children with a tracker. Never lose something that's important to you again.</p> <h2>4. Steripen</h2> <p>You may not know how expensive bottled water can be until you travel to a place where it's not safe to drink tap water. On a hot day in Europe for example, you may find that you drink over 50 ounces of water. This can cost over &euro;5 per day.</p> <p>A <a href="http://amzn.to/1WcVT15">Steripen</a> uses Ultraviolet rays to purify 33 ounces of water in 90 seconds. All you have to do is submerge the pen and press a button. This simple, handheld tool can save money and a ton of plastic by not disposing of all those bottles..</p> <p>One thing to note is that the Steripen removes bacteria and contaminants from the water but doesn't really help the taste. To combat funky flavored H2O, consider packing some flavoring packets or better yet, electrolyte powder.</p> <h2>5. Wi-Fi Range Extender</h2> <p>I have to say that this gadget has saved me a ton of hassle and has probably paid itself off as well. All you have to do is plug it into the wall, press a button to hook it up to the router, and the <a href="http://amzn.to/1VBBJ1J">range extender</a> can get rid of dead spots in your hotel, at the airport, or at the train station.</p> <p>No more having to go to a cafe and buy a coffee just to get a decent Wi-Fi connection. This thing should give enough of a signal boost to give you full bars, even if the router isn't nearby.</p> <h2>What's Your Favorite Travel Gadget?</h2> <p>My favorite money-saving gadget that I picked up this year has to be the Handpresso pump, but I love all of the items on this list. As a full-time traveler, I'm always looking for new tools to save money and make travel easier. What's your favorite travel gadget? Does it save you money? Tell me about it in the comments below.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-saving-travel-gadgets">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/easy-ways-to-save-on-7-everyday-buys">Easy Ways to Save on 7 Everyday Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">Make Flying Easy: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-packing-secrets-from-a-professional-traveler">15 Packing Secrets From a Professional Traveler</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-that-anyone-can-travel-for-free">7 Ways That Anyone Can Travel for Free</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel clean water coffee gadgets luggage steripen suitcases useful tools vacation wi-fi extender Mon, 25 Apr 2016 09:00:11 +0000 Nick Wharton 1695997 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Tech Gadgets With the Best Resale Value http://www.wisebread.com/8-tech-gadgets-with-the-best-resale-value <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-tech-gadgets-with-the-best-resale-value" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/beats_by_dre_000017638811.jpg" alt="Finding tech gadgets with the best resale value" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all know the story with technology. By the time you've opened the box, it's already out of date. As advances quickly move the latest and greatest tech gadgets into the &quot;out of date&quot; category, it's hard to know what to buy, and how much to spend.</p> <p>But, some tech gadgets are a better investment than others, holding their value well. So when the time does come to upgrade, these eight gadgets will still be worth a tidy sum.</p> <h2>1. Beats by Dre</h2> <p>They are not the best headphones on the market. To be honest, they're not even close to being the best, as far as technical specs are concerned. But when it comes to holding their value, <a href="http://amzn.to/1MrHlDg">Beats</a> are up there with the biggest and best studio headphones on the market. The reason is simple &mdash; people want them. They have a certain &quot;street cred&quot; that seems to be bullet-proof, and they also look pretty cool.</p> <p>You could pay up to $300 for a pair of <a href="http://amzn.to/1psUuGO">Beats Studio Wireless</a> headphones, brand new. The same make and model, used, will sell for close to the same price on eBay. That's not a big depreciation at all, especially for tech you actually wear. And if you buy limited edition models, they can actually go up in value.</p> <p>But to be clear, if you want a pair of <em>good </em>headphones that also hold their value, choose <a href="http://amzn.to/1S8jywz">Sennheiser</a>.</p> <h2>2. Apple iPad</h2> <p>It was the first tablet to take the gadget world by storm. It's still the tablet most people gravitate to, and it doesn't look like that will change anytime soon. The <a href="http://amzn.to/1S8jDAo">Apple iPad</a> came along in April of 2010, and after a small adjustment period (what is that thing and what does it do?), everyone was hooked. There have been many different types of iPad and competitor tablets released since, but it's the iPad that holds its value well.</p> <p>Now, if you have one of the first 2010 models, it won't get you much money used, as the tech is too dated. But more recent ones, you'll have no trouble reselling them for a good chunk of money. For example, a new iPad Air 2 with 64GB is over $600 after tax. The same one, used, is going for over $500 on eBay. Just remember, condition is everything, and original packaging makes a world of difference.</p> <h2>3. Game Consoles (Newer Models)</h2> <p>I was in the market for a Playstation 3 recently, and I figured I would be able to pick up a used one for $50 on Craigslist. Nope. A used one, with just one controller, was $100. Throw in more controllers and games, and you can expect to pay almost as much as a new one. Likewise, the Xbox 360, used, was fetching a tidy sum on Craigslist and eBay as well.</p> <p>If you take care of your consoles, keep the original box, and keep the games in great condition, you can expect the value of your gaming console to hold for quite a while. What's more, older consoles are making a comeback. An original NES system can easily fetch over $100, and some of the games are worth thousands.</p> <h2>3. Apple iPhone</h2> <p>Another one for Apple, and not surprisingly it's their flagship product. The iPhone is not even 10 years old yet (it was launched in 2007), but it has absolutely changed the way we all interact with the online world. And although Android phones are now surpassing iPhones in sales, they are not touching them when it comes to resale values. Do a quick search on eBay for completed listings and you'll see most iPhone 5 models are selling for around $200 (that's around half the price of a new 5s). If it's gold, quadruple that price. Even the original, clunky iPhone has value. In its box, you can get $80&ndash;$100 for it. If it's factory sealed&hellip;thousands.</p> <h2>4. Vintage Audio Equipment</h2> <p>If you want to get a tech gadget that will really hold its value well, don't buy new. Buy vintage. Right now, the comeback of vinyl means that a good record player (think Technics, NAD, Thoren) will not only be worth every penny, it will also hold its value for years. Or, in the case of designer models, rise significantly.</p> <p>What's more, you can still pick up great amplifiers, tape decks, turntables, and speakers for pennies on the dollar; especially if you know just what to look for in the thrift stores and garage sales. I recently picked up a Technics turntable for $15, in the original box, which is already worth over $100 on eBay. Not that I'm selling it! And after Eminem announced the re-release of his Slim Shady album on cassette, you can guarantee tape decks will be next to rocket in value. Grab one cheap while you can.</p> <h2>5. Fitbit Surge</h2> <p>Actually, a lot of wearable tech is holding its value well, including smartwatches and fitness trackers. The Fitbit Surge is definitely up there as one of the best for holding value. Right now, a new <a href="http://amzn.to/1MrIdHS">FitBit Surge</a> can set you back between $220&ndash;$250, while used ones are coming in at around the $150 mark. The reason, other than the sleek design and usability, is the onboard GPS tracking software. Not only can you chart distance and pace, but even elevation.</p> <h2>6. Google Chromecast</h2> <p>This is a no-brainer, as it's so affordable to begin with. But if you like buying products that hold their value, this is up there with Apple products. A new Chromecast will cost you $35 from most online retailers, and often it comes with Google Play credits. If you look up used ones on eBay or Craigslist, you'll see them priced between $20&ndash;$25, depending on condition, original box, and so on. It's an incredible useful little piece of tech, and the simplicity it takes to set up and use makes it an easy item to resell later.</p> <h2>7. Apple Watch</h2> <p>Third time's a charm for Apple, who continue to have a massive fanbase despite not producing a significant innovation for years. But whatever the current state of Apple's product line, its products continue to hold their value, and the <a href="http://amzn.to/1UmEuDj">Apple Watch</a> (shouldn't that be iWatch, or it that way too creepy?) is no exception.</p> <p>A new Apple Watch will cost you anywhere from $350&ndash;$12,000 (that's the 18K gold edition), while a used Apple Watch will sell for anywhere from to $130 to $15,000! Clearly some people have money to burn.</p> <p><em>Recognize any of your gadgets in this list?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-tech-gadgets-with-the-best-resale-value">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-power-banks">The 5 Best Power Banks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-advice-for-the-gadget-addicted">Frugal Advice for the Gadget Addicted</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/longtime-mac-users-punished-for-loyalty">Longtime Mac Users Punished for Loyalty</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tech-life-8-reasons-why-you-shouldn-t-be-an-early-adopter">Tech Life: 8 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Be an Early Adopter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-avoid-buying-electronics-youll-regret">5 Ways to Avoid Buying Electronics You&#039;ll Regret</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Technology apple watch beats by dre electronics fitbit gadgets ipads smart tech Tue, 29 Mar 2016 10:30:06 +0000 Paul Michael 1678002 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Old School Tools to Help You Stay on Budget http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-school-tools-to-help-you-stay-on-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-old-school-tools-to-help-you-stay-on-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_writing_journal_000055707370.jpg" alt="Woman using old school tools to stay on budget" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Because I am a visual thinker, low-fi tools like datebooks and check registers help me keep my finances better organized than when I use digital tools like Quicken and Excel. Surprisingly, these <em>olde time-y </em>office supplies also keep me from overspending.&nbsp;</p> <h2>1. A Receipt Spindle</h2> <p>I actually hate bookkeeping. As a result, my desktop used to be a mess of receipts at the end of every month &mdash; until I started using a <a href="http://amzn.to/1Uxxanl">cheap spindle</a> to organize my paper receipts. Every night I pull the receipts out of my tiny wallet and stick them onto the prong. At the end of the month, I pull the receipts off as one stack, flip the stack, and voila &mdash; receipts in chronological order ready to be reconciled with Mint.com. After double checking the receipts against my bank records, I then put the receipts into an <a href="http://amzn.to/253dSej">accordion file</a> in the odd event I need hard, tangible evidence at tax time. While my system might sound fiddly, it actually takes less than 20 minutes a month to manage my receipts this way.</p> <h2>2. Paper Checks</h2> <p>No pain, no gain. There have been, conservatively, 55,321 studies in the last two decades that show that people are willing to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-we-spend-more-when-we-pay-with-credit-cards">spend up to twice as much</a> for the same item when they pay with a credit card instead of cash.</p> <p><em>Coupling</em> is the psychological term for that negative feeling you get when you shell out cold hard cash for purchases. I double down on the discomfort by paying with checks. When I use a check, I am forced to write out the cost of a purchase, twice. The evidence of my consumption is right there in my own handwriting. While the moment it takes for me to pull out my checkbook and write a check might be annoying to anyone standing behind me in the checkout line, that moment gives me one last chance to think to myself, &quot;Do I really need to spend money on this?&quot; More often than not, that answer is no.</p> <p>There are several other reasons why I refuse to kick my check writing habit:</p> <h3>When Digital Banking Technology Fails You, Paper Won't</h3> <p>My neighbor's debit card was just spoofed. Although her bank caught the theft within hours, she has to wait 10 days before her new ATM card arrives. She's currently living off the $200 the bank allowed her to draw down without her card. If she had checks, she wouldn't have to live off $20 a day.</p> <p>Also, ATM machines and credit card machines require phone lines and electricity. During disasters like Hurricane Sandy, when the utilities go down, a paper check might be the only way to pay for emergency supplies.</p> <h3>Some Businesses Charge Extra Fees for Credit Cards</h3> <p>Many restaurants and small businesses charge an extra fee for credit card payments, or have a minimum amount for credit card purchases.</p> <h3>Utility Companies and Government Agencies Might Not Take Plastic</h3> <p>I thought I was going to just rack up the frequent flyer points by paying for all my utilities with my credit card. Alas, many of my utilities don't accept credit payments.</p> <h3>Use Checks to Create a Paper Trail</h3> <p>Not only do I use checks, I use duplicate checks. They make it easy to keep track of expenditures because they act like additional receipts.</p> <h2>3. A Spending Book</h2> <p>A <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/start-saving-more-with-this-one-simple-tool">spending book</a> is a diet journal for your bank account. If you want to create a budget and save more money, you first have to know how you are spending all your filthy lucre. Most people don't blow through cash at the craps table in Las Vegas. Instead, they fritter away huge sums of money every year on super boring purchases and experiences. This is the reason why financial writers are constantly harping about why you shouldn't buy bottled water or to-go coffee. Those <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-dumb-little-purchases-you-need-to-stop-making-today">little impulse purchases</a> are death by a thousand cuts to a budget.</p> <p>A spending book helps save money in two ways. First, it gives you a detailed, down to the penny, view of your spending habits. Secondly, like writing a check, it makes parting with your earnings that much more painful.</p> <h2>4. A Record of Financial Triumphs</h2> <p>In addition to tracking my spending in the week-at-at-glance section of my <a href="http://amzn.to/1UxAAX6">Moleskine </a>datebook, I use the month-at-a-glance section of my datebook to track my income. And by income, I mean the dime I picked up off the street, my garage sale earnings, and the money I made by selling old textbooks. All those teeny weenie income streams can <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/from-dumpster-diving-to-garage-sales-turning-trash-into-cash">add up to serious money</a> over the course of one year. My husband didn't think we would be able to afford to fly East to visit friends and family over Christmas, but we handily paid for our 10-day vacation to NYC and Washington, D.C. with the money we'd earned from these little transactions.</p> <h2>5. The Envelope System</h2> <p>My grandmother taught me how to budget using the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-comprehensive-guide-to-the-envelope-system">envelope system</a> when I was a child and too young to open a savings account of my own. Yes, this budget hack is so simple, that even a nine-year-old can use it.</p> <p>In brief, the envelope system uses cash to help visualize a budget and control spending. For example, three main spending categories for my household are groceries, records, and gas. Say my average monthly grocery budget is $200, my record budget is $100, and my gas budget is $200. To cover these three categories, I will withdraw $500 in cash from my paycheck and put the cash amount for each bill/budget category into their respectively named envelopes. This method prevents me from spending money out of pocket or my checking account because money has already been earmarked for every bill.</p> <p>This type of budgeting is also called <em>zero based budgeting</em> because 100% of the spending money for each month is allocated to envelopes and zeroed out at the end of each month.</p> <p>Personally, I like to have money left over in my envelopes each month. This little visual incentive is another reason why the envelope system helps me save money. I have tangible evidence of my good behavior!</p> <h2>6. A Portable Filing Cabinet</h2> <p>I think the main reason why old-fashioned bookkeeping tools have fallen out of favor is that many people have a hard time keeping track of paperwork. After years of trial and error, I finally found a solution that keeps my house free of loose papers.</p> <p>I use eight plastic <a href="http://amzn.to/253fS6j">accordion files</a> to keep track of my tax documents. One for this year's bills and paperwork, and one for each of the seven previous tax years. Although I have gone the &quot;paperless&quot; route with many of my bills, I still use this type of file to manage the hard copies of everything (real estate paperwork, recipes, knitting patterns) in my life.</p> <p>I also like envelope closure accordion files because I am a klutz who is constantly dropping her paperwork. These files keep my records neatly separated by category, even if I accidentally put them into my bag upside down. These files are also great for people like me who live in small houses with no storage space.</p> <p><em>What low-tech tricks do you use to manage your money? Share your skills with your fellow Wise Bread readers so we can all stay on budget when our Robot Overlords take control of the Matrix. </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-school-tools-to-help-you-stay-on-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-ways-to-save-money-by-tracking-your-receipts">6 Simple Ways to Save Money by Tracking Your Receipts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-things-every-frugal-person-should-have-in-their-wallet">The 7 Things Every Frugal Person Should Have In Their Wallet</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-one-young-entrepreneur-paid-off-40000-in-student-debt-by-age-24">How One Young Entrepreneur Paid Off $40,000 in Student Debt By Age 24</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-will-help-you-finally-organize-your-money">These 5 Apps Will Help You Finally Organize Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-organize-your-paperwork-in-just-10-minutes-a-week">How to Organize Your Paperwork in Just 10 Minutes a Week</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Organization checks Envelope system filing gadgets low-tech personal finance receipts record keeping tools Mon, 28 Mar 2016 10:01:03 +0000 Max Wong 1677889 at http://www.wisebread.com Smart New Uses for These 14 Kitchen Gadgets http://www.wisebread.com/smart-new-uses-for-these-14-kitchen-gadgets <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/smart-new-uses-for-these-14-kitchen-gadgets" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000024502043_Large.jpg" alt="finding new uses for old kitchen gadgets" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Have a kitchen full of gizmos, gadgets, and utensils? We all do, but we may not be using them to their full potential. Here are some new ways to repurpose your old wares that would make mama proud.</p> <h2>1. Food Processor</h2> <p>Make <a href="http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2010/07/how-to-make-ice-cream-without-an-ice-cream-maker-the-food-lab.html">homemade ice cream</a> without the pricey, space-stealing, limited-use ice cream maker. Just pour your prepared ice cream base into ice cube trays to set in the freezer, and then churn them to creamy perfection in the food processor.</p> <p>What goes great with ice cream? Pizza, of course. Whip up <a href="http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives/2010/10/the-pizza-lab-how-to-make-great-new-york-style-pizza.html">fresh pizza dough</a> using your food processor for a from-scratch, primo pie.</p> <h2>2. Waffle Iron</h2> <p>You'll get <a href="http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/photos/12-recipes-you-didnt-know-you-could-make-in-a-waffle-iron.html">more mileage from your waffle iron</a> &mdash; outside of holiday brunches, of course &mdash; now that you know it's great for cooking brownies, hash browns, falafel, banana bread, quesadillas, French toast, chocolate chip cookies, grilled cheese, and more.</p> <h2>3. Popcorn Machine</h2> <p>If you're a fan of fresh-roasted coffee in the morning, without the sting of a Starbucks price tag, put the beans in your air popper for a <a href="http://coffeegeek.com/guides/popperroasting">superior cup of joe</a>.</p> <p>Your popcorn machine also can be <a href="http://nostalgiaelectrics.com/roasted-nuts-recipe-for-your-stirring-popcorn-maker/">used to warm nuts</a> &mdash; including almonds, peanuts, and cashews &mdash; when you put them in the machine for five to 10 minutes.</p> <h2>4. Coffee Maker</h2> <p>What can your coffee maker do besides drip-brew your morning pick-me-up? A number of things, in fact &mdash; like make tea and instant oatmeal, melt coconut oil, boil eggs and hot dogs, mull wine, and steam broccoli. Could come in handy the next time you're stuck in a hotel.</p> <h2>5. French Press</h2> <p>WonderHowTo offers a few alternative <a href="http://food-hacks.wonderhowto.com/how-to/3-amazing-non-coffee-uses-for-your-french-press-0164586/">uses for your French press</a>, such as seasoning and serving milk, washing grains, and steeping tea.</p> <p>If you have a penchant for <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5227596/brew-your-own-coffee-liqueur">homemade liqueurs</a> infused with other edibles, you can use the French press to strain it.</p> <h2>6. Immersion Blender</h2> <p>Your immersion blender has more tricks up its proverbial sleeve than blending soup. Use it to churn up guacamole, mashed potatoes, banana &quot;ice cream,&quot; salsa, hollandaise sauce, mousse, and butter.</p> <p>Personally, I like to use my immersion blender to make malt-shop quality milkshakes. Just make sure you put your ingredients (milk and premium ice cream are all you need), in a large enough container &mdash; like a large cocktail shaker &mdash; and start slow so your delicious treat doesn't end up all over your shirt.</p> <h2>7. Ice Trays</h2> <p>BuzzFeed has compiled a list of <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/arielknutson/genius-ways-to-use-an-ice-cube-tray#.xgGMjXd19">clever uses for an ice tray</a>, the most interesting (and mouth-watering) of which include chocolate-covered cheesecake bites, Jell-O shots, peanut butter cups, and fro-yo.</p> <p>Outside the kitchen, you can use ice trays for more practical purposes, like separating and storing jewelry neatly; making homemade dishwasher detergent tablets; and starting seedlings before replanting in larger pots.</p> <h2>8. Muffin Tins</h2> <p>The innocuous <a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/10-ways-to-use-a-muffin-tin-other-than-making-muffins-188826">muffin tin</a> wears many hats, including as a tray for individual servings of oysters, a drawer organizer, a planter for herbs and small plants, and freezing single servings of soup.</p> <h2>9. Slow Cooker</h2> <p>Your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-crock-pot-dishes-to-serve-at-your-next-party">slow cooker</a> is just as ideal for making soups and stews as it is for<a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-bread-in-the-slow-cooker-192421"> baking bread</a> &mdash; which is totally legit &mdash; but Humorous Homemaking has compiled a great list of <a href="http://www.humoroushomemaking.com/non-food-uses-for-the-crock-pot">non-food uses for the Crock-Pot</a>, including keeping heating bags warm, making soap, dyeing Easter eggs using water and Kool-Aid, concocting an air freshener, and more.</p> <h2>10. Rice Cooker</h2> <p>I didn't grow up with a rice cooker in my house &mdash; it was strictly instant 'round those parts &mdash; but if I did, I probably would've tried my hand at making&nbsp;<a href="http://weelicious.com/2010/03/03/rice-cooker-mac-cheese-recipe/">mac and cheese</a> (because duh!),&nbsp;<a href="http://allmoneyblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/rice-cooker-chocolate-lava-cake.html">chocolate lava cake</a> (because OMG!), and&nbsp;<a href="http://cookinghawaiianstyle.com/index.php/hawaiian-recipes/recipes/detail/1077/rice-cooker-steamed-tofu-asparagus">tofu and asparagus</a> (because my mom would've wanted me to eat my veggies!).</p> <h2>11. Microplane</h2> <p>Curious about how else to use your microplane besides zesting citrus? Epicurious has a few ideas, such as <a href="http://www.epicurious.com/expert-advice/how-to-use-a-microplane-article">grating hard cheeses</a>, garlic, fibrous root vegetables, like beets and carrots; chocolate, lemongrass, ginger, and horseradish.</p> <h2>12. Bundt Pan</h2> <p>If you don't have a traditional roasting pan on hand, break out the Bundt and use it as a vertical roaster for your winner-winner chicken dinner.</p> <p>Braces-wearers know the perils of eating corn-on-the-cob &mdash; I should know, I used to be one of them &mdash; so to make it easier on them and whomever needs to remove it from the cob, use the Bundt pan as a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/easy_tip_for_getting_corn_off_the_cob/">convenient corn catcher</a>.</p> <p>An old Bundt pan for which you no longer have any kitchen use, can be turned into a&nbsp;<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/eterneyes_blissbrowsbent/3855817613/">shabby-chic planter</a>.</p> <h2>13. Egg Slicer</h2> <p>Slice mushrooms, olives, and strawberries in a flash by using that old egg slicer. One and done.</p> <h2>14. Turkey Baster</h2> <p>If you think turkey basters only have two uses, you're wrong. According to Reader's Digest, your turkey baster is <a href="http://www.rd.com/home/cleaning-organizing/turkey-baster-uses/">suited for a myriad of jobs</a>, including removing the grease at the bottom of a pan of ground meat that you're frying, changing plant water, separating eggs, changing brake fluid, and winding yarn.</p> <p><em>How do you use your old kitchen gadgets in new ways? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smart-new-uses-for-these-14-kitchen-gadgets">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-air-fresheners">The 5 Best Air Fresheners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-safest-cities-in-america-from-natural-disasters">10 Safest Cities in America from Natural Disasters</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-reuse-common-household-items">10 Ways to Reuse Common Household Items</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-ruin-an-antique-how-to-tell-if-you-should-refinish-wooden-furniture">Don&#039;t Ruin an Antique! How to Tell If You Should Refinish Wooden Furniture</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-82-best-spring-cleaning-hacks-we-ve-ever-shared">Flashback Friday: The 82 Best Spring Cleaning Hacks We’ve Ever Shared</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Home gadgets home kitchen appliances kitchen hacks Fri, 19 Feb 2016 10:00:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1658638 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Small Kitchen Appliances That Aren't Worth the Money http://www.wisebread.com/13-small-kitchen-appliances-that-arent-worth-the-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/13-small-kitchen-appliances-that-arent-worth-the-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/electric_tea_kettle_000042299750.jpg" alt="Learning which small kitchen appliances aren&#039;t worth the money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>No matter how big your kitchen is, sooner or later the countertops become cluttered. Whether it's from all of the wedding gifts you just received or too many late-night infomercial purchases, all those small kitchen appliances can really take up valuable space.</p> <p>Here are 13 small appliances that aren't worth the money, with cheaper alternatives.</p> <h2>1. Bread Machine</h2> <p>There's no better smell than fresh-baked bread. A $100 bread machine is easy enough to use &mdash; put the ingredients in, turn it on, and wait for the bread to bake &mdash; but the cleanup is difficult. And, speaking from experience, the rotating mechanism at the bottom of the bread machine can break, rendering it useless.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Make bread from scratch. Find a cookbook, follow the recipe, and you're set. Making homemade bread is a lot of work, but that can be the point of cooking &mdash; a slow, Zen-like process where the extra time is likely to equate to a better meal.</p> <h2>2. Stand Mixer</h2> <p>The KitchenAid mixer is one of the best-looking and often-used small appliances in our kitchen. But at $350, it's difficult to justify buying another when it breaks &mdash; which ours did. To make matters worse, its warranty had expired long ago.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Buy a cheap <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001CH0ZLE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B001CH0ZLE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ODNF3TNESZUHFGPB">electric hand mixer</a> and use your own bowl to mix things. It won't be as easy to use as a stand mixer, but it's less likely to break. And it takes up a lot less space in your kitchen.</p> <h2>3. Immersion Blender</h2> <p>At $100, an immersion blender is an expensive way to make squash soup or other dishes that need to be crushed or blended while cooking. We have one, though it rarely gets use. It sits so far back in a cupboard that it's often forgotten about.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Crush items with a big, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-kitchen-mixing-spoons">wooden spoon</a> while cooking in a pot, or pour them into a blender.</p> <h2>4. Deep Fryer</h2> <p>I'm not a big fan of deep-fried food, and cooking it at home seems messy. But if you like to deep-dry, spending $60 to $120 on a small fryer for the kitchen can sound like a deal &mdash; until it breaks or you find you barely ever use it.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Take a frying pan, add half an inch or less of cooking oil, and you've got a simple deep fryer. Or find a recipe to make fried chicken or onion rings in your oven.</p> <h2>5. Ice Cream Maker</h2> <p>Homemade ice cream is one of the most delicious treats. A quality ice cream maker is about $200, which may sound like a deal, but chances are you actually won't use it often enough to justify the cost or the amount of space it takes up.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Make ice cream by hand. One effective DIY method involves <a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-ice-cream-without-124210">beating an ice cream base</a> in a bowl over ice. Like many alternatives, this takes more time, but should pay off in taste.</p> <h2>6. Contact Grill/Griddles</h2> <p>I have nothing against George Foreman and his popular grills that sell for $18 to $100. I've never used one and can only assume they work great. But it's another device to clean, and odds are you already have other pans at home that will do the same job.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Make a crispy panini right in a pan on the stove using a smaller lid as a press. You can use that pan for anything else a contact grill or griddle can make.</p> <h2>7. Electric Juicer</h2> <p>Fresh-squeezed orange juice in the morning is one of the best ways to start the day. An electric juicer, however, is an often-forgotten kitchen appliance that is probably bought with the best of intentions, but never fully utilized.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>A <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KH9PXZ6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00KH9PXZ6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=F73BQOENAPFMAR3W">handheld juicer</a> is a few dollars, and takes up a lot less space than most electric ones.</p> <h2>8. Vacuum Sealer</h2> <p>Some food can break down quicker when introduced to air &mdash; steak, coffee, and dried fruit, among others &mdash; and a vacuum sealer can solve that problem by sealing it in an airtight bag for the freezer. But at $100 or so, a vacuum sealer can be a waste of money if you don't use it very often.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Buy freezer bags and squeeze as much air out as you can when using them. And don't buy so much food that you need a vacuum sealer to begin with.</p> <h2>9. Electric Slicer</h2> <p>An electric slicer is a must-have for a butcher. But are you really slicing that much meat at home?</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Use a sharp knife you already have.</p> <h2>10. Dehydrator</h2> <p>A dehydrator is useful if you want to make beef jerky or dried fruits and vegetables. But again, as with too many small kitchen appliances, is this something you really plan on using often?</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Dry fruit in your oven. Or buy it that way at the grocery store.</p> <h2>11. Stovetop Smoker</h2> <p>Smoking meat in your kitchen sounds like a good idea. For around $60, a stovetop smoking pan provides an easy way to get this great flavor in homemade meals, but again &mdash; more often than not, it will sit unused.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Cook on your backyard grill, or make your own <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5880818/build-your-own-stovetop-smoker-with-kitchen-gear-you-already-have">stovetop smoker</a> with a roasting pan or stockpot, metal steaming tray, and aluminum foil.</p> <h2>12. Multi-Steamer</h2> <p>At $30, a multi-steamer to cook vegetables is a relatively inexpensive tool. But the hassle of using one means that often times, you simply won't.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Steam with a conventional pot you have at home, or use a microwave oven.</p> <h2>13. Tea Kettle</h2> <p>I used to drink hot tea often, and thought it was quaint to have a tea kettle that would make a whistling sound when the water was hot. This was great until I discovered that in my small kitchen, the kettle took up a premium spot on the stove and water deposits in the kettle made it worthless after a while.</p> <h3>A Cheaper Alternative</h3> <p>Boil water on the stove or in the microwave.</p> <p><em>What other kitchen gadgets are a waste of counter space?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/aaron-crowe">Aaron Crowe</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-small-kitchen-appliances-that-arent-worth-the-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tasty-treats-to-make-with-mulberries">Tasty Treats to Make With Mulberries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-clutter-keeps-you-poor">8 Ways Clutter Keeps You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-frugal-shouldnt-be-a-dirty-word">4 Reasons &#039;Frugal&#039; Shouldn&#039;t be a Dirty Word</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pick-up-one-of-these-frugal-hobbies-this-weekend">Pick Up One of These Frugal Hobbies This Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smart-new-uses-for-these-14-kitchen-gadgets">Smart New Uses for These 14 Kitchen Gadgets</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cooking gadgets kitchen appliances shopping useless items waste of money Thu, 03 Dec 2015 14:00:17 +0000 Aaron Crowe 1617392 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Gadgets Every Work at Home Professional Needs http://www.wisebread.com/6-gadgets-every-work-at-home-professional-needs <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-gadgets-every-work-at-home-professional-needs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/female_student_000056371408.jpg" alt="Woman using gadgets every work at home professional needs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Desk jockeying from the comfort of your home? Make your home office way more awesome with these six gadgets. They can help increase your productivity, reduce boredom, and make <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-worst-work-from-home-jobs">working from home</a> much easier.</p> <h2>1. Multi Device Keyboard</h2> <p>Need to switch from iPad to laptop, and back again without fumbling for cables or constantly restarting the Bluetooth connection? This <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MUTWLW4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00MUTWLW4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=5CYHDAML4NWYGBQR">multi-device keyboard</a> makes it easy &mdash; as simple as turning a dial. It's wireless and completely mobile, making it easy to move around the house or pack on business trips.</p> <h2>2. Smart Light Bulb</h2> <p>I've been on spreadsheet grinds that go so long that when I look up, the sun's set and it's dark as a cave in my office. It's time to consider switching the home office lighting to the new <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00TJ4WMZE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00TJ4WMZE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=PXVTF3FRNDVCHGYE">GE Wink</a>, which can be controlled by both your home dimmer and from anywhere with a smartphone app. Try one in your office and one in the living room, so you can brighten, dim, or turn off the light without having to leave the desk.</p> <h2>3. Bluetooth Headphones or Speaker</h2> <p>My Bluetooth speaker has been a lifechanger. When playing back a video for work, I can actually hear it without tethering myself to the computer with corded headphones. If you want a big sound for less, try the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D6OHHEE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00D6OHHEE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=2VIIEZBOSHOE5DCW">Photive Bluetooth speaker</a>, which is by far the best value in the Bluetooth speaker market. It also holds a single charge for days.</p> <p>For those who like lush headphones, these <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MR8Z28S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00MR8Z28S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=IFTL42CB5APW6QWD">Jabra Bluetooth headphones</a> are awesome. They're comfortable, have well rounded sound, and work within a decent range. You can finally enjoy work tunes and grab something from the fridge at the same time!</p> <h2>4. USB Key</h2> <p>This really handy <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00A3U7IS4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00A3U7IS4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=QMPCHVGQGAS6MOVJ">USB stick by LaCie</a> fits onto your key ring, but it's also shaped and sized like a key! This makes it lightweight and less bulky than your current USB drive. You'll also find it very hard to fill because it holds a sizable 32GB of drive space, making this the perfect goto on-the-go USB solution.</p> <h2>5. Desk Elliptical</h2> <p>Everyone knows it now: Sitting is a disease. But even if you work from home, you probably also need to work at a desk. There are options such as the standing desk, or the treadmill desk. But, If you want to remain sitting most of the time yet keep your blood flowing (perhaps even burning some extra calories), try this <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00SIBYETQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00SIBYETQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=E2CQUHTE3LOAKWEC">under-desk elliptical</a>. It's compact, light, and easy to use. Plus, it's a great value compared to full-size home gym equipment.</p> <h2>6. Tylt Vu Charging Pad</h2> <p>This is really cool: An affordable and convenient <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DG8NUC8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00DG8NUC8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YY3JNJKHK5OP4BYB">home charging pad</a> that's good for any smartphone. No more misplacing cords, then scrounging for them in a hurry when your phone is at 3% battery. It's also small enough to keep on your desk and take along on business trips.</p> <p><em>What are some other gadgets you can't work from home without?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-gadgets-every-work-at-home-professional-needs">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-stay-productive-while-working-from-home">5 Ways to Stay Productive While Working From Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs">8 Life Skills Every Freelancer Needs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-biggest-mistakes-people-make-when-working-from-home">The 5 Biggest Mistakes People Make When Working From Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-your-smartphone-is-hurting-your-career">7 Ways Your Smartphone Is Hurting Your Career</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-convince-your-boss-to-let-you-work-from-home">How to Convince Your Boss to Let You Work from Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Technology freelancing gadgets home office telecommute work work from home Mon, 29 Jun 2015 09:00:13 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1467957 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Cool Uses for Your Coffee Maker http://www.wisebread.com/11-cool-uses-for-your-coffee-maker <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-cool-uses-for-your-coffee-maker" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_eating_noodles_000016639297.jpg" alt="Woman using coffee maker to cook noodles" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you're a fan of Food Network's Alton Brown, you know his philosophy on kitchen gadgets; don't buy them if they only have one use. Another way to look at that could be: how do you get multiple uses from the gadgets you already have in your kitchen?</p> <p>One gadget many of us have in our kitchen is a coffee maker. Whether it's a traditional version with a carafe, the popular &quot;pod&quot; kind, or a combination of the two, here are some ways you can use those coffee makers for more than just a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-get-your-morning-coffee-for-free">cuppa joe</a>. It's also a great life hack when you're stuck in a hotel room with minimal equipment at hand.</p> <h2>1. Poached, Soft-Boiled, or Hard-Boiled Eggs</h2> <p>Whether you want soft-boiled eggs with toast soldiers, or hard-boiled eggs for egg salad, the coffee maker is a perfect appliance for preparation. Add the number of eggs you want, carefully, into the coffee carafe. A standard 12-cup carafe can hold at least four eggs comfortably. Then, set the coffee maker (no coffee or filter) to make a full pot. Once the eggs are completely submerged, start the timer. It should take about three to four minutes for soft-boiled, and seven to eight minutes for hard-boiled. You will need to experiment with the timing, depending on the size and brand of coffee maker that you have. But once you have it sorted, it's easy. For poaching, wait until the water is in the carafe, then add the eggs carefully with a spoon &mdash; as you would if poaching in a pan.</p> <h2>2. Warmed Hot Dogs</h2> <p>No joke. Pop your hot dogs into the empty carafe, and then set the coffee maker to make a full pot (obviously, don't put any filter or coffee grounds in the machine). The hot water will cover the dogs, and the hot plate will keep them hot. As they are already cooked, this is simply a reheating exercise, and it's perfect for keeping them hot as you serve them up in batches.</p> <h2>3. Chocolate Fondue</h2> <p>Why spend your time making coffee in your coffee maker, when you can make something as delicious as a chocolate fondue? Simply heat &frac34; cup of cream in the carafe, and then start adding broken pieces of bittersweet chocolate bars (you'll need four 3-&frac12; ounce bars). You can also add a little liqueur if you're feeling fancy. Stir occasionally. Then, bring the carafe to the table, and dip your favorite fruits, pretzels, and cake squares.</p> <h2>4. Butter-Poached Chicken</h2> <p>Want to get a little creative? Put a raw chicken breast in the carafe, along with a few tablespoons of butter, a clove of crushed garlic, a little water, seasoning, and some fresh herbs. After about 15&ndash;20 minutes on the hot plate, you should have a perfectly soft and tender chicken breast for your salad. Here's the <a href="http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2009/08/macgyver-chef-poached-chicken-and-couscous-in-a-coffee-maker/">poached chicken recipe</a>, including a side of couscous!</p> <h2>5. Oatmeal and Ramen</h2> <p>This one works with both the traditional machines, and the pod variety. Simply put your oatmeal or ramen into the carafe, or a bowl, and then add the appropriate amount of water into the coffee machine's reservoir. If you're making oatmeal, add a flavored herbal tea bag into the coffee compartment. Then, turn it on. You'll have perfect oatmeal or ramen in under five minutes.</p> <h2>6. Rice</h2> <p>Don't bother with the stove or the rice cooker if you just have a small portion of rice to cook. Add &frac12; cup of rice to your carafe, and add the appropriate amount of water (it varies on the kind of rice you're using) to the reservoir. Turn on the machine, then let it cook on the hotplate for five to 10 minutes.</p> <h2>7. Perfect Broccoli</h2> <p>Fill your coffee carafe halfway with freshly cut broccoli, add some salt, then add a full pot of water to your coffee maker's reservoir. Once it has covered the broccoli, let it cook for around 10 minutes. The great thing about using a coffee maker is that you can see the color of the broccoli, and thus avoid overcooking it.</p> <h2>8. Salmon or Trout Steaks</h2> <p>In this recipe, you actually utilize the coffee basket. Place a salmon steak in the filter basket, along with a coffee filter, a few herbs, and seasoning. Add 10&ndash;12 cups of water to the reservoir and turn it on. Then, turn the steak over, and repeat the process. This will give you perfectly cooked fish. It's worth noting though that it will require a thorough cleaning of the coffee maker after this to ensure no fishiness taints your future cups of coffee. If you prefer, you can poach the fish in the carafe using water.</p> <h2>9. Beer &mdash; Yes, Beer</h2> <p>I am not going to go into details on the lengthy process you need to follow to create home brewed ale in a coffee pot, but the good people at Southern Fried Science have done all the hard work, and have a complete <a href="http://www.southernfriedscience.com/?p=1419">recipe for coffee pot beer</a>. As for if it's any good, the writer of the article guarantees, <em>&quot;...If you are careful, it will be at least as good as the cheapest commercial alternative.&quot; </em>So, you decide.</p> <h2>10. Grilled Cheese and Quesadillas</h2> <p>You don't need the water, or the carafe, for these. All you need to do is utilize the hotplate, which can get hot enough to melt cheese and make bread and tortillas hot, crispy, and delicious. For either dish, add a little butter to the hotplate, then when it starts to sizzle, add your tortilla or bread, followed by cheese, and another slice of bread or a tortilla. Flip them when they reach your desired level of crispiness. You'll amaze your family and friends with this coffee maker magic.</p> <h2>11. Pasta</h2> <p>Just like rice, spaghetti and other pasta products can be cooked to perfection in your coffee maker. Fill the coffee maker to the 12-cup mark, and put your pasta in the carafe. Now, turn the machine on, and let the pasta cook. If you have spaghetti or linguine, you will need to push the sticks down into the coffee pot as they soften. Krista of Heavenly Savings shows you how to <a href="http://heavenlysavings.net/2012/03/15/cooking-pasta-in-a-coffee-pot/">cook pasta in a coffee pot</a> on her blog.</p> <p><em>Have you ever used your coffee maker for anything besides coffee? What'd you make?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-cool-uses-for-your-coffee-maker">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ugggh-hic-i-justss-gotta-eat-somehicthing-my-top-10-homemade-drunk-snacks">Ugggh, (hic) I justss gotta eat some(hic)thing; my top 10 homemade drunk snacks.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-own-twinkies-and-other-secret-recipes-by-the-food-cloner-dude">“Make your own Twinkies” and other secret recipes by the Food Cloner Dude.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-throw-that-out-19-great-meals-you-can-make-from-scraps">Don&#039;t Throw That Out! 19 Great Meals You Can Make From Scraps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-delicious-ways-to-prepare-a-humble-head-of-cabbage">15 Delicious Ways to Prepare a Humble Head of Cabbage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-106-delicious-lunches-that-will-make-you-excited-to-brown-bag-it">Flashback Friday: 106 Delicious Lunches That Will Make You Excited to Brown-Bag It</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Food and Drink coffee pot gadgets kitchen recipes Mon, 25 May 2015 15:00:09 +0000 Paul Michael 1429808 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways to Avoid Buying Electronics You'll Regret http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-avoid-buying-electronics-youll-regret <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-to-avoid-buying-electronics-youll-regret" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mp3-player-Dollarphotoclub_30124781.jpg" alt="mp3 player" title="mp3 player" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>They're shiny and new right out of the package, and too often, they cost a pretty penny. They are the gadgets we drool over when they first make an appearance in stores, sometimes after standing in line for hours to be among the first to get their hands on them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-as-seen-on-tv-kitchen-gadgets-that-are-actually-worth-the-money?ref=seealso">6 &quot;As Seen on TV&quot; Kitchen Gadgets That Are Actually Worth the Money</a>)</p> <p>While I've never considered myself enough of a fanatic to go to ridiculous lengths to buy a tech tool, I do love cutting edge features. I've loved them enough to get something based on hype, and then have deep regrets afterward. Here are just a few of my most notable instances of gadget buyer's remorse.</p> <h2>1. Replacement &quot;Toys&quot;</h2> <p>Every holiday, the toy commercials blast the gospel of how great a toy that acts like a tablet will be for your baby, toddler, or preschooler. And for a few weeks, the kids are always amazed that they can play games, take photos, and edit videos in a similar fashion to their adult counterparts.</p> <p>But then the magic ends; kids realize soon enough that their tablet is <em>not</em> the same as an iPad. The limitations are too obvious, and for the price of a typical toy tablet, you can easily get into an entry-level adult tablet with all the protective gear you need to keep it safe from spills and drops. It will last the child far longer than a gadget aimed at babies, and you'll avoid finding it unused in the bottom of the toybox. This rule goes for anything that has been &quot;kiddified&quot; for marketing purposes (such as toy phones, cameras, and music players).</p> <h2>2. Cheap Versions of Popular Products</h2> <p>That $35 MP3 player that looks like an iPod Touch &mdash; but isn't &mdash; is what we're talking about here.</p> <p>While there is no shortage of websites selling no-name versions of the product you really want, usually you are better off saving your money for the real thing. Not only is there an issue of quality to consider (can you even reach customer service for an unpronounceable tech company?), but compatibility is always a cause for concern. I remember getting three of my kids nifty music players that held just as many songs as an Apple product, but the file format turned out to be incompatible with most of the software we used for buying songs. The day-to-day implementation of these products was frustrating, and we ended up just giving them away.</p> <h2>3. Tech in the Midst of a Standards Battle</h2> <p>Remember Betamax? Laserdisc? HD-DVD?</p> <p>These were all technologies embroiled in a bitter war during a competitive early market. All lost to other technologies, leaving the owners of their products with pretty worthless gadgets (and libraries of obsolete media). If you're on the fence about whether your tech of choice is actually <em>the</em> &quot;tech of choice,&quot; you may want to wait a bit before buying. I don't know anyone who is proud of their investment in the losing competitor.</p> <h2>4. Printers With Expensive Refill Cartridges</h2> <p>Investing in tech can be a lot like playing the stock market: You really have to know your stuff to avoid making a significant investment in something that could tank hard down the road. If there is any technology more vulnerable to this than the printer, I don't know of it. Most mainstream printers (both inkjet and toner) start out at a rather high price point, only to become significantly cheaper in the months following their release.</p> <p>Their ink solutions, however, can come way down or stay very high, and this is what is baffling for many consumers. Another factor in how cheap the ink will get is whether knock-off cartridges will be made for that model. Those that accommodate &quot;remanufactured&quot; ink products can save 75% or more for the user, but it's impossible to tell when or if your model of printer will be one of the lucky ones upon it's original release to market. (We regret every printer purchase we've ever made with ink that costs more per cartridge than the actual printer can be bought for.)</p> <h2>5. Mini-Anything</h2> <p>Little blenders. Tiny food processors. Baby coffee machines. Unless you are a hardcore follower of the &quot;tiny house&quot; movement, there is almost no good reason to spend just as much on a small version of a powerful kitchen or DIY tool as its full-sized counterpart. For one, most smaller appliances are lacking in power or quality parts. I have a lazy Susan full of these baby gadgets that were given to me as gifts, picked up for a dime during Black Friday, or just found their way into my home from a yard sale. In a cook-off between them and my mega-powerful-father-of-all versions, they lose. Every single time. So keep your three cup coffee brewers and invest in a 10-cup machine. You don't have to fill it all the way if you don't want to.</p> <p><em>What tech gadgets do you regret buying?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/linsey-knerl">Linsey Knerl</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-avoid-buying-electronics-youll-regret">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-advice-for-the-gadget-addicted">Frugal Advice for the Gadget Addicted</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-tech-gadgets-with-the-best-resale-value">8 Tech Gadgets With the Best Resale Value</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tech-savvy-people-have-these-10-things-in-their-homes-do-you">Tech-Savvy People Have These 10 Things in Their Homes — Do You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-apps-that-actually-pay-you-to-shop">8 Apps That Actually Pay You to Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Technology dumb buys gadgets tech wasted money Thu, 26 Feb 2015 16:00:11 +0000 Linsey Knerl 1308848 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Smart Storage Solutions for Your TV Room http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000020530150_Large.jpg" alt="man woman tv couch" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Need a media room makeover? I certainly do. There's a lot of stuff that goes into entertainment, even for those of us who like to keep life more minimal. So check out these amazingly easy ways to get your space organized in a flash so you can enjoy more movies, tunes, and fun. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-rid-of-your-old-electronics?ref=seealso">How to Get Rid of Your Old Electronics</a>)</p> <h2>1. Fake Built-Ins</h2> <p>You don't need carpentry skills to enjoy the look and function of built-ins. This <a href="http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2011/03/built-in-beauty.html">organization blogger</a> collected five <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00PIXVT9A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00PIXVT9A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YK5YA3KVGEN6MHEZ">Ikea Billy bookcases</a> and assembled them together using wood and moulding for a finishing touch. She then painted them and accented the faces with patterned wallpaper. So much storage!</p> <h2>2. Stacked Shelving</h2> <p>If you have lots of media items, like CDs, DVDs, and games, consider stacking them high with a system of simple shelving. A floor-to-ceiling installation can be both practical and eye-catching. You can find basic shelving at your local hardware store along with all the brackets you need to fasten it to the wall. If you cannot find the studs, use screws with anchors for staying power.</p> <h2>3. Disc Jockey</h2> <p>I used to work in libraries, so I'm all about this streamlined approach to disc storage. Take all your CDs and DVDs out of their plastic boxes and slip them into <a href="http://www.hisugarplumsblog.com/2013/09/organized-mountain-of-dvds-cds.html">slim paper sleeves</a>. Arrange in a cute bin alphabetically by creating clearly marked dividers.</p> <h2>4. Cord Wrangler</h2> <p>I don't know about you, but we have a gazillion cords laying on the ground in our entertainment room. Get them in line by using <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=cable%20organizer&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=L7XDK7D5S5KNNFYQ">cable organizers</a> installed on the back of your TV stand. Though <a href="http://www.ikeahackers.net/2012/12/ocd-friendly-expedit-tv-bench.html">this project</a> is specific to the Ikea Expedit and Signum organizers, the same concept applies to any other piece of furniture your television lives on. Attach to the back and get your cords in line.</p> <h2>5. Thing Organizer</h2> <p>There are lots of, well, things that go along with TVs, DVD players, game stations, streaming devices, sound systems, and more. Tame all the extras &mdash; cords, chargers, etc. &mdash; in file or media boxes. You'll <a href="http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2012/03/you-asked-organizing-cords.html">cut out cardboard dividers</a> to create nooks to place all your stuff inside. Don't forget to wrap the cords using ties to keep them from getting tangled.</p> <h2>6. DIY Ottoman</h2> <p>For small rooms, a DIY ottoman is&nbsp;genius. I'd love to make one to store my child's toys or even my workout equipment (weights, bands, rollers, etc.) for all those exercise DVDs I do at home. All you need is a galvanized metal tub to start. Then you'll cut out a circular top out of wood and upholster with foam and fabric. You can choose to add swivel casters or not. The finished ottoman can double as a coffee table or seating in a pinch.</p> <h2>7. Hidden Storage</h2> <p>Not everything we store in our entertainment rooms is beautiful or display-worthy. Try hiding extra cords, remote controls, and other equipment with a couple <a href="http://www.bhg.com/rooms/living-room/room-arranging/multipurpose-living-room/#page=7">tension rods and short curtains</a>. Finding the exact size you need at the store might be difficult, so try making your own curtains out of fabric and iron-on hemming tape. Just cut to size, fold over edges, and leave room for the rod before heating.</p> <h2>8. Speaker Solution</h2> <p>Clunky speakers cramping your style? My husband and I are continually arguing about the best way to have surround sound without all the bulk and eyesores. A great idea is to slip them under a skirted table. That way, he gets his subwoofer and I get my tidy room.</p> <h2>9. Record Station</h2> <p>We have an impressive collection of vinyl that needs a place to live. This <a href="http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2011/09/diy-industrial-record-cabinet.html">DIY record cabinet</a> looks easy to assemble and has distinct industrial flair. Beyond that specific project, I like the general idea of using old crates &mdash; metal or wooden &mdash; as storage for records. If you can find several sturdy crates, you could stack them atop one another for a quick record shelf wherever you need one.</p> <h2>10. Television Cabinet</h2> <p>Pottery Barn has some amazing cabinets that hang over your television to hide it away in style. The problem is that they cost over $450 to purchase, depending on your TV size. Try making your own cabinet using <a href="http://www.soyouthinkyourecrafty.com/wall-mounted-tv-case-tutorial/">frames and a pallet</a>. You'll construct a box on the wall before mounting your TV and putting the frames on hinges to open and close.</p> <p><em>How do you keep your media room tidy?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-school-tools-to-help-you-stay-on-budget">6 Old School Tools to Help You Stay on Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-why-you-should-get-a-3d-printer">8 Reasons Why You Should Get a 3D Printer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/miracle-device-coin-rolls-all-your-credit-cards-into-one">Miracle Device Coin Rolls All Your Credit Cards Into One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mr-cheap-stuff-who-do-you-think-you-are">Mr. Cheap Stuff: Who do you think you are?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-in-your-house-youre-forgetting-to-clean">9 Things in Your House You&#039;re Forgetting to Clean</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization entertainment gadgets media technology Thu, 19 Feb 2015 12:00:07 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1299968 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Kitchen Gadgets That Aren't Worth the Money http://www.wisebread.com/10-kitchen-gadgets-that-arent-worth-the-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-kitchen-gadgets-that-arent-worth-the-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/garlic-press-Dollarphotoclub_61613548.jpg" alt="garlic press" title="garlic press" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Everyone wants to save time and get creative in the kitchen, but many kitchen tools simply aren't worth the money. Many &quot;new&quot; gadgets are designed for tasks that can be done with tools you already have in your kitchen, and some are just so weird that you'll probably never use them, no matter how gorgeous those turducken popsicles look on the infomercial. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-must-have-kitchen-purchases-under-10?ref=seealso">13 Must-Have Kitchen Purchases Under $10</a>)</p> <p>So check out this list of 10 kitchen gadgets that aren't worth the money, and then maybe just stop watching infomercials altogether.</p> <h2>1. Garlic Press</h2> <p>Go into any home, and you'll probably find a garlic press tucked away in the back of a kitchen drawer. If you've ever used one, you know why. The poor results and the difficult clean up are not worth the money for many people, even professional chefs. Once you press the clove, most of it turns into a liquid paste that you can't use, and then you have to try to figure out how to salvage what little is left once it goes through the press.</p> <p>It's quicker and cleaner to mince the garlic with a sharp knife. The same goes for a garlic peeler. You can get the same result with a knife. Gently crush the clove with the broad side of a large knife, and the peel comes right off. Then you only have to clean one tool instead of two.</p> <h2>2. Zester</h2> <p>No zester I have tried has never given me the results that you see in the pictures from food magazines. Either use a vegetable peeler, or if you need a finer grade, use the finer side of your cheese grater.</p> <h2>3. Wire Cheese Slicer</h2> <p>I've actually owned two of these. One was a gift, and the other I bought after the first one broke. They always break. You're better off slicing cheese with a knife, especially harder cheeses. If you want thinner slices, you can use non-waxed dental floss and get the same effect.</p> <h2>4. Egg Poacher</h2> <p>While a microwave egg poacher might be worth the money if you are in a hurry and want a quick breakfast, metal egg poachers are a huge waste of money. They are designed to be placed in the bottom of a pot of water, but if you are going to go to the effort of boiling water, you are better off just poaching your eggs the traditional way. The eggs typically get stuck to the metal unless you use a lot of butter, and trying to get the pan out of the boiling water without burning yourself is nearly impossible.</p> <p>Poaching eggs isn't that difficult once you get the hang of it. The trick is keeping the yolk intact when you crack the egg into the water (fresh eggs are ideal for poaching since the yolks tend to hold up better). If you have a slotted spoon, you can easily remove the egg from the water when it's done.</p> <h2>5. Nutribullet</h2> <p>I've never owned one of these, but a friend of mine bought one and said it broke after a few uses. She also said it took too long to grind the food and even longer to clean after use. Plus, you lose a lot of the nutrients because it removes all the fibrous material. Most people buy these to save space, but if you are serious about juicing, look for a traditional juicer. You get more of the fiber and nutrients, and they tend to be more reliable and last longer.</p> <h2>6. Cake Pop Molds</h2> <p>I may be slightly biased on this one since I've never understood the concept of a cake pop. Why not just make a cake? But they can be fun for parties and for children. However, keep in mind that they are not as easy to make as it sounds. I looked up several reviews of different brands, and most people said it took them several tries before getting the right consistency. The pops also stick to the pan more often than not, so unless you really want to make cake pops all the time, it's not worth the money or effort to make them for one or two parties.</p> <h2>7. Electric Can Opener</h2> <p>I have to admit, I grew up with one of these, and they can be handy. But manual can openers are made with smarter designs now, making them easier and safer to use. You can get a decent manual can opener for under $10, and you'll be saving a little counter space.</p> <h2>8. Pickle Grabber</h2> <p>In theory, these are a great idea. But you could also save your money and just use a fork to get that last pickle out of the jar.</p> <h2>9. Strawberry Stem Remover</h2> <p>Yes, as the name suggests, this tool is designed solely to remove strawberry stems, but some people also use it to remove the tops of tomatoes, too. You can also do this easily with a serrated knife, or provide a dual use for your grapefruit spoon (which is actually handy gadget if you eat a lot of grapefruit).</p> <h2>10. Pepper Prepper</h2> <p>Of all the items on this list, I think this one has to be the biggest waste of money. This tool is designed to remove the cap of the pepper and the ribs and seeds from the middle. You can do that just as easily by cutting around the middle in four slices, which also takes care of the next part of the prep work. If you are making stuffed peppers, I can see how this item might be appealing. But again, you can easily carve out the cap with a knife and remove the innards by hand and only need to clean one tool.</p> <p><em>What kitchen gadget do you own but rarely use? Please warn us in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-watson">Ashley Watson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-kitchen-gadgets-that-arent-worth-the-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-must-have-kitchen-purchases-under-10">13 Must-Have Kitchen Purchases Under $10</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-10-items-to-borrow">The Best 10 Items to Borrow</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-kitchen-mixing-spoons">The 5 Best Kitchen Mixing Spoons</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-air-fresheners">The 5 Best Air Fresheners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-laundry-stain-removers">The 5 Best Laundry Stain Removers</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Shopping gadgets kitchen tools utensils Fri, 13 Feb 2015 12:00:05 +0000 Ashley Watson 1289196 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Must-Have Kitchen Purchases Under $10 http://www.wisebread.com/13-must-have-kitchen-purchases-under-10 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/13-must-have-kitchen-purchases-under-10" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/custard-dish-Dollarphotoclub_68770101.jpg" alt="custard cup" title="custard cup" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>My kitchen is well-stocked with the basics, but there are some items that I just absolutely love. Several of them get used every day. Most aren't fancy &mdash; they just work really well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-make-your-kitchen-look-awesome-for-under-100?ref=seealso">9 Ways to Make Your Kitchen Look Great for Under $100</a>)</p> <p>The best part? They are under $10.</p> <h2>1. Knife</h2> <p>I absolutely hate the look of <a href="http://www.ebay.com/itm/KAI-Pure-Komachi-2-High-Carbon-Stainless-Steel-Kitchen-Knives-with-Sheaths-/171156552074">my knives</a>. The colors just repulse me. They look like something that belong in a preschool, and for goodness sakes, that would be <em>so wrong</em>. But&hellip; I found them on eBay for under $10! I have beautiful knives in a lovely knife-block; they work very nicely. However, the hideous fuschia knife (pictured in the link) is my go-to for serious slicing. It's so ugly, I keep it in a drawer so I don't have to look at it. The Kai Knife and I clearly have a love-hate relationship.</p> <h2>2. Glass Measuring Cup</h2> <p>I own two <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00LGLHU0K/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00LGLHU0K&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=5YGPFJW2LI6OQWUV">Pyrex measuring cups</a>, because one is always in use, or dirty. I'm not sure I could cook without them. They are, of course, microwavable. Talk about sturdy! Mine have been dropped on the floor; they survive. I have dropped them in the sink, and they live on. They are ridiculously easy to clean. I used them as sauce or gravy boats until recently, when a friend decided I needed to class up my act and bought me a real gravy boat. My mother used hers so long the red measuring lines had faded &mdash; but still kept it in use. After 20 years, she had a good idea of where ⅓ and &frac12; cup were on the cup.</p> <h2>3. Candy Thermometer</h2> <p>Granted, if you don't make candy, you can get by without one. But think of it this way: If you own a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000CFQN8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0000CFQN8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=3DMIBCDOK2DUF7E3">candy thermometer</a>, <em>you can make candy</em>. Let that sink in a little. You can also use it for deep-frying. Yup. At under $6, you now understand why I consider this to be an essential kitchen gadget.</p> <h2>4. A Mallet</h2> <p>You know when you've had a really crummy day at work, and you come home, feeling grumpy, and need to make dinner? Here is the perfect thing (and I really and truly do this). Get out your <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009LN48T6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B009LN48T6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=FUVVVZFSQWUMGNDZ">meat mallet</a> and some thick chicken breasts. Pound those things. Not only is use of a mallet cathartic, but it's a money-saver (and results are delicious). Sale on chuck steak? Pound it. I recommend you buy this stellar equipment in a store, where you can pick the mallets up and feel how much heft they have.</p> <h2>5. The Ove Glove</h2> <p>I have sung the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-as-seen-on-tv-kitchen-gadgets-that-are-actually-worth-the-money">praises of the Ove Glove</a> here before, but it's worth mentioning again. I now consider it an essential for candy-making. When you have boiling-hot candy bubbling on a stove, your new BFF is the Ove Glove. It takes getting used to, because unless you are stupid, the natural inclination is not to grab a pan of cookies right out of the oven. Mine has been washed many times and still works perfectly. It contains Kevlar, making it a pretty serious piece of equipment.</p> <h2>6. Kitchen Shears</h2> <p>Does a day go by when I don't use my <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00R3Z4FR4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00R3Z4FR4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZXQOLLAWAGY7GV2M">kitchen shears</a>? I don't think so. I chiffonade. I snip. My favorite use of the shears is for cutting a game hen in half. It takes about two minutes to divide, season, and toss into the oven. What else are they good for? I have used them to cut up tough stew meat and skinny sausages. I have scissored chickens, pasta dough, slices of bread for croutons, and leafy greens. They have been washed hundreds of times, and they're still sharp.</p> <h2>7. The Pot Watcher</h2> <p>Have you ever put a pot of water on the stove to boil, then forgotten about it? In extreme cases of forgetfulness, this could be a fire hazard. But at the very least, it's a terrible waste of energy. And as expensive as energy costs have gotten to be, I highly recommend <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0043FOZCM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0043FOZCM&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZJJH7QBDURYNODR4">The Glass Boil Alert Pot Watcher</a>. (We just call ours the Pot Watcher.) I just will <em>not</em> stand at the stove, watching and waiting for the water to boil, to add pasta, or begin timing the hard-boiled eggs. With this gadget, I don't have to.</p> <h2>8. Quiche Dish</h2> <p>How often do I make a quiche? Oh, maybe three or four times a year. You wouldn't think that would justify needing to own a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00004RFPV/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00004RFPV&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=7UQ34R6BUDGRINWQ">quiche dish</a>, but that's where you'd be wrong. Check out this beautiful <a href="http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/2014/02/parmesan-vegetable-tian.html">vegetable tian,</a> which works perfectly in a quiche dish. Heck, you can make a pie in it, roast chicken pieces, or serve a Dutch baby for breakfast. If you are feeling 50s, it's a pretty container for a Jell-O salad. It is also a practical piece, due to its shallow stature &mdash; great for dredging fish or chicken in bread crumbs. But we're not done! Its shape also lends itself to dips.</p> <h2>9. Custard Cups</h2> <p>Funny thing, but I didn't own a single one of these <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001DM71KQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B001DM71KQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=WI76LTBGPH6LJT2P">great little cups</a> until a couple of years ago. How did I exist without them? We are now up to two sets, because they are so handy. Of course, they are great for their intended purpose (custard, pudding, flans). However, they also get used at breakfast to scramble or poach individual eggs (cups are microwavable). They hold a nice amount of cereal or oatmeal. At lunch, they are perfect for a little cup of soup or a small salad. Their best use, though? <em>Leftovers</em>.</p> <p>I just surveyed the refrigerator. There is one cup of leftover spaghetti, and another of beets. We just save those little bits and put them into a custard cup, with saran or waxed paper, and out they come again. Taco night is another great way to use them &mdash; one cup for tomatoes, one for shredded cheese, another for olives, etc. In the morning, I often throw the cups of leftovers into scrambled eggs. Because they are clear, it's easy to see what the leftover is, which reduces waste, and, of course, saves money.</p> <h2>10. Roasting Pan</h2> <p>Do you like rotisserie chickens? How about pot roasts? I'll bet your grandmother has one of these sturdy roasters in her garage. Ask her if you can have it, or order your own <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000QRAMMS/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000QRAMMS&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=M6E6WGDIBHK7YOAN">roasting pan</a>.</p> <p>These have been around forever, and I don't know why they fell out of favor, except that they are kind of big. I have mine on a pantry cart and I keep other stuff inside it, for storage. If you can possibly find room, buy one. Why? The best <a href="http://www.simplebites.net/back-to%E2%80%A6cooking-school-roast-chicken-101-recipe-lemon-oregano-roast-chicken/">roasted chicken</a>, ever, a <a href="http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/rosemary-pork-roast-with-carrots/f36c6605-8df5-485d-8935-320a6a26b5ae?nicam1=PAID_SEARCH&amp;nichn1=GOOGLE&amp;nipkw1=how%20to%20cook%20a%20pork%20roast&amp;niseg1=TDCORE_BC&amp;esrc=17089&amp;mkwid=s1GZnBBIx_dc&amp;pcrid=44200174016&amp;gclid=Cj0KEQiA5K-kBRDZ9r71gOvlxOMBEiQAwkK52PioMi_dBlPckiUO2YYbXrfIyJQjSoeGqkClf-dbLysaArBR8P8HAQ">pork roast</a>, or a big bunch of roasted vegetables. I have even used it to make this <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/08/dining/081mrex.html?_r=0">no-knead bread;</a> it worked great. This is a very basic, versatile piece of cooking equipment. Mine is too small for a turkey, but I can fit two chickens at a time. This is wonderful when chicken goes on sale. I buy two and cook them both. One we eat right away. The second I cut up and put into freezer bags. We then have chicken on hand to add to casseroles, soups, etc.</p> <h2>11. Timer</h2> <p>I love my &quot;chicken&quot; kitchen timer because it's cute, but for accuracy, this <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DOJX3TE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00DOJX3TE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=O3LQVMXSDJS3IUA7">AcuRite digital timer</a> is great. It's loud enough to hear if I'm outside yakking with the neighbors, easy to operate, and I've had it for years. It has been dropped, and it still works. It's magnetic, and hangs on the refrigerator, so it's very handy. My favorite use for it, though, involves food safety. When I read this article about <a href="http://foodpoisoningbulletin.com/2013/waipahu-school-warned-of-food-safety-violations-in-september/">food poisoning</a> which occurred on a neighbor island, it was a good reminder to pay attention. We are very careful about cooling food (and reheating). We package up our leftovers, and then set the timer so that we don't forget to put food away.</p> <h2>12. Salt Mill</h2> <p>A <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KGPLMZG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00KGPLMZG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=QFQFQDLN7M72XQIE&amp;network=g&amp;gclid=Cj0KEQiA5K-kBRDZ9r71gOvlxOMBEiQAwkK52KLxRGuqTeZAqfMJhBjIN13R0Vhcrqi4ATzRgbwW12oaAiLy8P8HAQ">salt mill</a> is just a &quot;must&quot; if you live in a tropical climate, as I do. We tried everything before this &mdash; rice in the salt, some fancy Swedish container, something else that had a cap, you name it. The bottom of this one will still get clumped up with salt, but it can easily be wiped away.</p> <h2>13. Covered Storage Container</h2> <p>Again, I own two of these&nbsp;<a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000CFTP7/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0000CFTP7&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=RD52SOUQCDJD5YU5">Pyrex covered dishes</a> (what is it with me?). They are <em>awesome</em>. The lids haven't warped with time. They clean up easily. They can go from refrigerator to microwave, although I do not put the lid into the microwave. They fit nicely into my insulated lunch bag, so leftovers can easily become office lunch. I like how they stack either in the refrigerator or the dish cupboard.</p> <p><em>What are your favorite inexpensive kitchen &quot;essentials?&quot; Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-must-have-kitchen-purchases-under-10">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-kitchen-gadgets-that-arent-worth-the-money">10 Kitchen Gadgets That Aren&#039;t Worth the Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-kitchen-mixing-spoons">The 5 Best Kitchen Mixing Spoons</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-air-fresheners">The 5 Best Air Fresheners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-laundry-stain-removers">The 5 Best Laundry Stain Removers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-laundry-detergents">The 5 Best Laundry Detergents</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Shopping cheap gear essentials gadgets kitchen utensils Mon, 05 Jan 2015 16:00:11 +0000 Marla Walters 1274906 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Gadgets That Save Time and Money http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-gadgets-that-save-time-and-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-gadgets-that-save-time-and-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-smartphone-Dollarphotoclub_67251700.jpg" alt="businessman smartphone" title="businessman smartphone" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on gadgets that save time and money, how to do a full day's work in 90 minutes, and the best gifts to re-gift.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.cheapism.com/blog/3317/money-saving-gadgets">12 Gadgets That Help You Save Time and Money</a> &mdash; A vacuum sealer will keep your food fresh longer. The only other thing you need is a reusable bag! [Cheapism]</p> <p><a href="http://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2014/12/do-a-full-days-work-in-90-minutes/">Do a Full Day's Work in 90 Minutes</a> &mdash; Instead of working on several unrelated tasks, pick a clear theme for your 90-minute focus block. [Steve Pavlina]</p> <p><a href="http://www.kiplinger.com/article/spending/T063-C011-S001-best-gifts-to-re-gift.html">5 Best Gifts to Re-gift</a> &mdash; Gift cards are great to re-gift at any time of the year &mdash; just check for an expiration date. If the card has holiday branding, ask the retailer to exchange it for something more generic. [Kiplinger]</p> <p><a href="http://dallisonlee.com/blog/2014/12/31/3-ways-disorganization-can-damage-relationships/">3 Ways Disorganization Can Damage Your Relationships</a> &mdash; Constantly being late because you're disorganized will annoy your friends, family, and co-workers &mdash; guaranteed. To curb your lateness, try leaving earlier, tracking your time, and planning ahead. [Organize to Revitalize!]</p> <p><a href="http://makezine.com/2014/12/30/6-inexpensive-materials-dozens-of-ideas">6 Inexpensive Materials, Dozens of Ideas</a> &mdash; Aluminum foil is great inside the kitchen&hellip; and out! Use it to sharpen your scissors, make a mask, or create electric origami! [Make:]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/volunteering-10-reasons-why-its-a-great-new-year-s-resolution">Volunteering: 10 Reasons Why It's a Great New Year's Resolution</a> &mdash; Volunteering builds stronger communities, and that's never a bad thing! [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Become-Morning-Person-26607205">7 Easy Ways to Become a Morning Person</a> &mdash; Keep the same sleep schedule all week. Sleeping in on the weekends will mess up your body clock. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thousandaire.com/six-things-about-bankruptcy-everyone-should-know/">Six Things About Bankruptcy Everyone Should Know</a> &mdash; Not all debts will be erased. You'll still need to pay student loans, child support, and specific taxes. [Thousandaire]</p> <p><a href="http://www.listenmoneymatters.com/one-simple-trick-achieve-new-years-resolutions/">One Simple Trick to Achieve New Year's Resolutions</a> &mdash; When it comes to New Year's resolutions (or any goal, for that matter), discipline is more important than motivation. [Listen Money Matters]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/2014/12/top-10-reasons-might-time-quit.html">Top 10 Reasons It Might Be Time to Quit</a> &mdash; If the situation is making your health suffer, then it's time to throw in the towel. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-gadgets-that-save-time-and-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-small-kitchen-appliances-that-arent-worth-the-money">13 Small Kitchen Appliances That Aren&#039;t Worth the Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-personal-finance-skills-everyone-should-master">12 Personal Finance Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures">Make Money and Declutter by Selling These 5 Unlikely Treasures</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-dumb-ways-youre-going-to-waste-money-this-summer">9 Dumb Ways You&#039;re Going to Waste Money This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beat-stress-with-these-28-inexpensive-pastimes">Beat Stress With These 28 Inexpensive Pastimes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living best money tips gadgets Fri, 02 Jan 2015 20:00:10 +0000 Amy Lu 1275510 at http://www.wisebread.com Tech-Savvy People Have These 10 Things in Their Homes — Do You? http://www.wisebread.com/tech-savvy-people-have-these-10-things-in-their-homes-do-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/tech-savvy-people-have-these-10-things-in-their-homes-do-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man-technology-office-460901289-small.jpg" alt="technology" title="technology" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Smartphones aren't the only devices tech-savvy people swear by. In fact, their homes are chock-full of gizmos and gadgets that make life easier and more fun. From the alarm clock to the coffee table, here's our roundup of the smartest home accessories on the market.</p> <h2>1. An Alarm Clock You Can Shoot With a Laser Gun</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00A49UZQG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00A49UZQG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BIRJLK4MCKB5DO7W"><img align="middle" width="500" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Lock%20N%20Load%20Alarm.jpg" /></a></p> <p>This alarm clock comes equipped with a target you can shoot from under the covers with a plastic laser gun. <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00A49UZQG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00A49UZQG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BIRJLK4MCKB5DO7W">The alarm won't stop until you hit the bullseye</a> &mdash; a task that requires real brain function. If you're too blurry-eyed to hit your mark, you can crawl out of bed and silence the noise manually. Either way, you'll be alert and ready to start your day.</p> <h2>2. A Keurig Coffee Maker</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000AQSMPO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000AQSMPO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BWXTXXBTR5ZQTRNF"><img align="middle" width="265" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Keurig%20B60.jpg" /></a></p> <p>No mess. No grinding. No clean-up. Simply input the Keurig cup featuring the coffee flavor you fancy and watch it brew instantly &mdash; and neatly &mdash; before your eyes. <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000AQSMPO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000AQSMPO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BWXTXXBTR5ZQTRNF">It's sort of like a robot that makes your morning cup of joe</a>.</p> <h2>3. A Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker in the Shower</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HLRXLNI/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00HLRXLNI&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JHGGVTTPEBEAFRRH"><img align="middle" width="425" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Splash%20Tunes%20Shower.jpg" /></a></p> <p>No wires. No worries. Just great sound quality and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HLRXLNI/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00HLRXLNI&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JHGGVTTPEBEAFRRH">all your favorite songs on deck</a>. Not only that, but the Splash Tunes by FRESHeTECH also takes phone calls, allowing you to talk and listen through the same speaker that plays your wake-up playlist.</p> <h2>4. A Wireless Phone Charger</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00F6SQ1D6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00F6SQ1D6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JEFXXFN23WYWPANN"><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/PowerBot.jpg" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00F6SQ1D6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00F6SQ1D6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JEFXXFN23WYWPANN">Simply drop your phone down on the circular pad and watch</a> as it juices back up to full battery life. This charger by PowerBot is equipped with anti-slip grip technology to keep the phone from slipping or scratching off its home base.</p> <h2>5. A Lock You Can You Bolt From Miles Away</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00L3WUUMW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00L3WUUMW&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=KPACZ4QAOVG6R6BW"><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/lockitron.jpg" /></a></p> <p>Introducing Lockitron, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00L3WUUMW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00L3WUUMW&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=KPACZ4QAOVG6R6BW">a slipcover for your front door deadbolt that can be locked and unlocked from anywhere in the world</a>. The lock has built-in Wi-Fi, which allows you to check the status of the lock while you're away at work or at play. You can even share the lock code with friends and family you trust. Unexpected visitors dropping by when you're not home? No problem. A quick unlock and relock is at your fingertips, even when you're on-the-go.</p> <h2>6. A Crock Pot You Control With Your Smartphone</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00IPEO02C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00IPEO02C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JLJQVW54VRJCLCLI"><img align="middle" width="434" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/crock-pot%20wifi.jpg" /></a></p> <p>This WeMo-powered crock can cook a mean pot roast &mdash; and you don't even need to be in the kitchen to supervise. Simply <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00IPEO02C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00IPEO02C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JLJQVW54VRJCLCLI">adjust the temperature and cook time from an app on your smartphone</a>, or check the status of your meal so you know when you start setting the table.</p> <h2>7. A Thermostat That Learns Your Temperature Preferences</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009GDHYPQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B009GDHYPQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=OD4VDP6EZFFTHJW4"><img align="middle" width="459" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/nest%20thermostat.jpg" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009GDHYPQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B009GDHYPQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=OD4VDP6EZFFTHJW4">The Nest Learning Thermostat remembers the temperatures you like</a> and programs itself to adjust to those temps at whatever time of day that you like. You can further control the device using your smartphone, telling it when to kick the heat up or down from wherever you may be. Never again will you come home to a chilly house.</p> <h2>8. A Light Bulb That Plays Music</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=MiPow%27s%20PlayBulb&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Dgarden&amp;linkId=DDT7HWJY2Y2BMZJG"><img align="middle" width="455" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Playbulb.jpg" /></a></p> <p>The PlayBulb by MiPow is <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=MiPow%27s%20PlayBulb&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Dgarden&amp;linkId=DDT7HWJY2Y2BMZJG">an LED light fixture that doubles as a Bluetooth speaker</a>. Using an app on your smartphone you can easily program the bulb to brighten and play vibrant music at your regular wake-up time or soften and play soft classical songs as you start to fall asleep.</p> <h2>9. An Electronic Spoon Scale</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JL8DOBO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00JL8DOBO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=F75XFNDUQ6SNA4OE"><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Digital%20spoon.jpg" alt="" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JL8DOBO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00JL8DOBO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=F75XFNDUQ6SNA4OE">This spoon digitally measures up to 10 ounces</a> for precision-perfect cupcakes. And it comes complete with a detachable scoop for easy cleaning.</p> <h2>10. A Coffee Table Embedded With A Touchscreen Computer</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009VNF4G2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B009VNF4G2&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ALV37ZJU46WYY4RW"><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Mozayo%20Smart%20Touch%20Table.png" alt="" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009VNF4G2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B009VNF4G2&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ALV37ZJU46WYY4RW">A tabletop has never been so much fun</a>. This coffee table by Mozayo has a 32 inch LCD HD screen with touchscreen technology as well as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB, Ethernet, and a hookup for your personal computer. There's even an anti-glare overlay so you won't have to squint while checking your email as the sun streams in through the living room window.</p> <p><em>Anything missing from this list? What tech wizardry do you have in your house?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tech-savvy-people-have-these-10-things-in-their-homes-do-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-avoid-buying-electronics-youll-regret">5 Ways to Avoid Buying Electronics You&#039;ll Regret</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-advice-for-the-gadget-addicted">Frugal Advice for the Gadget Addicted</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-tech-gadgets-with-the-best-resale-value">8 Tech Gadgets With the Best Resale Value</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-the-secret-to-buying-electronics-for-cheap">This Is the Secret to Buying Electronics for Cheap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-why-you-should-get-a-3d-printer">8 Reasons Why You Should Get a 3D Printer</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development Shopping gadgets geekery geeks tech Thu, 09 Oct 2014 17:00:07 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1228113 at http://www.wisebread.com 15 Time-Saving Tools Everyone Should Own http://www.wisebread.com/15-time-saving-tools-everyone-should-own <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/15-time-saving-tools-everyone-should-own" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman-smartphone-462363713-small.jpg" alt="woman smartphone" title="woman smartphone" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Feel like there's just not enough time in the day? Join the club. It feels like I'm going nonstop from before sunup to waaaay past sundown every day. I haven't found a solution that will add any time to my daily routine, but I have found a few ways to cut back on the time I'm spending on tasks that otherwise could be more efficient. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-need-a-time-budget-and-how-to-create-it?ref=seealso">You Need a Time Budget</a>)</p> <p>Take a look at some of my time-saving solutions here, then let me know how you shave a few minutes off your day in the comments below.</p> <h2>1. Food Processor</h2> <p>I enjoy cooking, and I usually make time to eat a healthy meal at home, but I don't always have the time (or energy) to cut, chop, peel, grate, and slice my breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Rather, I use a food processor whenever it makes sense to quickly and effortlessly manipulate the ingredients I need so I can speed up the cooking process and feed my hungry tummy faster. <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00A6JHPK8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00A6JHPK8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZWCJVCQYHLUO3GZJ">KitchenAid makes a great processor</a> (the assortment of blades are beyond helpful), but <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003O47MKA/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B003O47MKA&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZR6ZGBIKSY3QGPL5">Ninja also makes a line of powerful food prep products</a> that I personally give my seal of approval.</p> <h2>2. Backup Gadget Batteries</h2> <p>iPhone users in particular know the daily struggle of seeing 1% at 11 a.m. even though they awoke four hours before with a fully charged device. Thus, we're forced to charge our phones multiple times a day to avoid being without power when we're not near a socket. In fact, I've personally spent 20 minutes or more on multiple occasions in an actual Apple store just to get a little juice. A rechargeable, on-the-go battery, however &mdash; <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=mophie&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=4MOINVFV3IS6JINE">like the ones from Mophie</a> &mdash; drastically cuts back on the instances that I have to stop and recharge my phone when I'm out and about. I plug it in at night and take it with me to avert any low-battery crises.</p> <h2>3. Slow Cooker</h2> <p>There's not much better in this world than coming home after a long, hard day at work to a house that smells delicious because dinner is ready to eat. I don't use my slow cooker much in the summer, but I'm looking forward to stealing a little me-time this fall and winter thanks to my Crock-Pot. I'm also fond of this handy little attachment for slow cookers called the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ET9E7U2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00ET9E7U2&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=WLEWWACF42T4LJW4">Lid Pocket</a>, which helps me reduce the potential of an OCD attack when I have to put the lid on the counter or sink when taking it off &mdash; and I know I'm not alone.</p> <h2>4. Smartphone and Apps</h2> <p>There's no denying that smartphones help us save time in innumerable ways, from eliminating the need to clip coupons and helping us make lists to managing the security on our homes and keeping in touch with friends. If I had to pick my favorite time-saving app though, I think it would be my mobile banking app. When my bank launched it, it was like trumpets from the heavens were playin' my jam. Now I deposit my checks online, transfer money easily, and even sign up for in-app deals that give me cash back on participating purchases.</p> <h2>5. BB Cream</h2> <p>Erin Konrad, a spokesperson for CouponPal.com, told me about BB Cream. I didn't know much about this facial cosmetic product before Erin chimed in, but Wiki describes it as an all-in-one replacement for serum, moisturizer, primer, foundation, and sunblock. &quot;I love using a BB cream in my beauty regimen; it has multiple uses, which can help save me time during my morning routine,&quot; Erin says. &quot;I love anything that allows me to sleep in a few more minutes.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Programmable Coffee Maker</h2> <p>I'm not a coffee drinker myself &mdash; to be honest, I don't get it at all &mdash; but I don't have to be a java head to know that a programmable coffee maker can shave a good five to 10 minutes off your morning routine if you set it to brew just before you get up or while you're doing your other daily routines. There's also another cool gadget that will help you save time in the morning, the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GKNOH8W/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00GKNOH8W&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=4GMUXPG5QLDH53QJ">Gamila Impress Coffee Brewer</a>, which gives you the fresh taste of a French Press while you're on the move. I had a chance to try it for another post and even I was impressed.</p> <h2>7. Dishwasher</h2> <p>Most homes have dishwashers nowadays, so let's consider this one an &quot;oldie but a goodie.&quot; In fact, it may even be the biggest time saver of them all. Remember when you had to wash and dry all those dishes by hand? How long did it take you &mdash; 20, 30 minutes? More? Who has time for that &mdash; or dishpan hands? Not me. I just load it and forget it. Until it's time to unload it, of course; you know nobody else in the house is gonna do it.</p> <h2>8. Exercise Equipment</h2> <p>You can save a lot of time and money by buying exercise equipment for your home. I'm not talking about expensive machines, but rather inexpensive pieces like dumbbells, resistance bands, and over-the-door pull-up bars that will help you stay in shape without wasting time going back and forth to the gym multiple times a week. You'll also save anywhere from $10 to $100 a month on gym membership after the initial investment on the equipment.</p> <h2>9. Coin Sorter</h2> <p>My dad used to keep a huge water jug full of coins in his bedroom when I was a kid. Every year or so he would empty it out and spend hours &mdash; like many hours! &mdash; counting and wrapping the coins so he could take them to the bank and cash them in. Of course, these days you also can take your coins to a public machine and have them sorted and counted for you, but that'll cost you upwards of 8% to 10% of your total take.</p> <p>A great solution to save time and money is to purchase a coin sorter for your home and get in the habit of throwing your change into it every day. When the coin wrappers are full, set them aside until you're ready to take them to the bank. I'd also advise buying a fairly decent sorter. I purchased a relatively cheap one in the past and it wasn't worth the plastic it cost to make it.</p> <h2>10. DVR</h2> <p>I don't watch much TV anymore, but back in the day I was a junkie, scheduling my activities around my favorite shows. But thanks to my DVR, I now can do more of what I want and need to do &mdash; like pump out these Wise Bread articles to help you live a more efficient and fiscally responsible life &mdash; because I know I can watch my programs later. Which is perfect for a lazy Sunday when there's nothing else on anyway.</p> <h2>11. Autonomous Cleaning Robots</h2> <p>When <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000UUBCNO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000UUBCNO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=RRJ3CWOUE4UVFCJC">Roomba</a> was first invented the line only consisted of a round disc that would move around your carpeted floor and suck up all the junk that you used to have pick up by manually pushing a vacuum cleaner. That product still exists, though it's now a much more advanced version, but the line also include models that will scrub and mop floors and clean pools and gutters. I can't even begin to quantify how much time these little babies save, but it's not drop in the bucket.</p> <h2>12. All-in-One Washer Dryer</h2> <p>I'm not sure if it's okay for a grown man to look at shiny new appliances like a wild cat eyes a juicy piece of fresh meat, but my obsession is real and perhaps a tad frightening. Nonetheless, I'm totally into the high-efficiency, all-in-one washer-dryers. I know I'm not the only person who hates going back and forth to the washer and dryer putting clothes in and taking them out of one machine on another all day long, and this is the perfect solution.</p> <p>It's important to note, however, that while the machine's TurboWash will dramatically reduce wash time, the dryer (because it's non-vented) may take longer than you're used to. But who cares? When it's done, it's done, and you can get back to your DVR.</p> <h2>13. No-Iron Clothing</h2> <p>I would probably have to iron no-iron clothing &mdash; because I'm totally a freak about ironing my clothes &mdash; but for people who loathe it but have to do it if they want to look presentable and professional, I think this is a great compromise. If you're skeptical about how well no-iron clothing performs, Good Housekeeping put a few brands to the test, <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=127614">as reported by ABC News</a>.</p> <h2>14. George Foreman Grill</h2> <p>For those of us who live in urban areas and have no room for a real grill &mdash; or can't own one altogether &mdash; a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001NXC65K/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B001NXC65K&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=QJ5RAST22J6QQ6NM">George Foreman Grill</a> is a great compromise appliance. There's no charcoal to burn of course, so you're saving time there, but the other awesome time-saving aspect of these grills is that they cook both sides of the food at once, essentially cutting your time in the kitchen in half. Plus, reviews have always been on the positive side for the grills, so you know you're getting a good product.</p> <h2>15. Hybrid or Electric Car</h2> <p>I left this entry last because as a society we're still not quite ready to fully embrace hybrid and electric cars, but we are moving steadily in that direction. Alas, once these kind of cars become commonplace, positive results will abound. We won't pollute the environment as much, we won't have to rely on foreign oil so heavily, and we won't have to pop in and out of gas stations as much (or ever if your car is completely electric). You can get where you're going faster and cheaper, which will make your trip all the more relaxing. Aaaah.</p> <p><em>Do you have more time-saving items that everyone should own to suggest? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-time-saving-tools-everyone-should-own">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-youre-wasting-time-without-realizing-it">10 Ways You&#039;re Wasting Time Without Realizing It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-new-toys-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use New Toys to Teach Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-money-saving-tricks-to-know-before-buying-an-engagement-ring">12 Money-Saving Tricks to Know Before Buying an Engagement Ring</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-places-to-get-cheaper-diapers">5 Places to Get Cheaper Diapers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-smart-ways-to-save-on-fathers-day">3 Smart Ways to Save on Father&#039;s Day</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Productivity Shopping efficiency gadgets labor savers time time savers Thu, 25 Sep 2014 15:00:07 +0000 Mikey Rox 1220280 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Pieces of Credit Card Tech That Will Blow Your Mind http://www.wisebread.com/6-pieces-of-credit-card-tech-that-will-blow-your-mind <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-pieces-of-credit-card-tech-that-will-blow-your-mind" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mobile-wallet-credit-card-478704511-small.jpg" alt="mobile wallet" title="mobile wallet" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Credit cards are ubiquitous nowadays, but have you ever wondered what is going on inside those cards, or the machines that are in &quot;charge&quot; of making sure the purchases you make are credited to your account? We thought it might be an interesting series to explore the hidden technology that might impress you that's hiding in your wallet!</p> <h2>1. Chip + PIN Technology</h2> <p>This bit of technology is ubiquitous in Europe and South America, and until recently, nearly nonexistent in the United States. But, those of you that have recently applied for and received a credit card may have in your possession a credit card with a gold square in the middle of the card. This is called an <a href="https://www.chasepaymentech.com/faq_emv_chip_card_technology.html">EMV chip</a>, and it makes it nearly impossible for thieves to steal your credit card and use it for purchases. To use it, a PIN is required, like a debit card. Manufacturing a fake credit card in your name is nearly impossible, according to Andi Coleman, who is part of the committee that regulates standards for credit cards in the United States. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/will-new-chip-and-pin-credit-cards-stop-identity-theft?ref=seealso">Will New Chip and Pin Technology Stop Identity Theft?</a>)</p> <h2>2. Coin</h2> <p>This <a href="https://onlycoin.com/">&quot;all-in-one&quot; credit card </a>made quite a splash in 2013 with its flashy release of a card that can store all your credit cards in one piece of plastic, making some readers of this site very happy I am sure! You can take a look at this <a href="http://techcrunch.com/2014/05/05/coin-demoes-the-tech-that-scored-a-15-5m-round-led-by-red-point/">TechCrunch article</a> to see it in action, but we may be looking at the future of card technology (or at least until they are deemed useless by future tech).</p> <h2>3. &quot;Tap and Go&quot;</h2> <p>One piece of technology that I find cool in some credit cards is the &quot;tap and go&quot; feature. This works just as it sounds &mdash; simply tap your credit card on the reader at the register, and go on your merry way. It speeds up transactions, which is good for merchants like Starbucks with long lines. There is a computer chip and antenna embedded in each card, which adds to costs but is in the best interests of the merchant (who saves time) and the credit card company (which makes it easier for consumers to use their card, increasing usage).</p> <h2>4. Tokenization</h2> <p>Those that are worried about their individual data being stolen by hackers can be relieved that &quot;tokenization&quot; is catching on. Basically, your data is encrypted into a &quot;token&quot; that is essentially worthless if stolen en route from your card to the merchant. The merchant can then convert back the token into something that it can read, and ultimately charge you for. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-card-fraud-and-how-to-avoid-it?ref=seealso">How to Avoid Credit Card Fraud</a>)</p> <h2>5. Ondot</h2> <p><a href="http://www.ondotsystems.com/products">Ondot</a>, marketed as the remote control for your credit card, gives you control over when and where your cards can be used. Location based controls can be tied to zip code, so a thief won't get far, or a card can be synced to a smartphone GPS, which means if it wanders far from your phone, it won't work. Other features include the ability to block certain stores or types of stores. It's an unprecedented level of control for those who want to manage their own &mdash; or their children's or their employees' &mdash; credit card spending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-secured-credit-cards?ref=seealso">Best Secured Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>6. Loop</h2> <p>The <em>smartphonification</em> of America continues apace, with several companies finding ways to put your cards into a &quot;wallet&quot; on your phone, which you then use to make payments. <a href="http://www.looppay.com/">Loop</a> stores your credit card data on your smartphone, and includes a special protector that wraps around your phone to communicate with payment machines. (They also offer a key fob that does the same.) Place your phone or key fob against the credit card reader, select a card on your iPhone or compatible Android phone, <a href="http://www.looppay.com/how-it-works/">press the Loop button</a>, and the transaction is complete.</p> <p>So, what do you think? Are you eyeing some of this new technology as a feature for your next credit card? Chip and PIN technology will be ubiquitous within the next two to three years here in the United States, but you'll want to secure a card with this feature if you plan on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/travel-and-money-using-your-credit-card-on-the-road?ref=inarticle">traveling abroad</a> anytime soon. If not, you'll be stuck using your debit card or cash.</p> <p><em>Do you think any of these credit card advancements help you manage your spending more carefully? Or do you think they will make it too easy to charge another purchase? Please share in comments! </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mark-jackson">Mark Jackson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-pieces-of-credit-card-tech-that-will-blow-your-mind">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-save-money-with-credit-cards">10 Tricks to Save Money with Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-why-i-prefer-credit-cards-over-cash">10 Reasons Why I Prefer Credit Cards Over Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-many-credit-cards-should-you-carry">How Many Credit Cards Should You Carry?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/miracle-device-coin-rolls-all-your-credit-cards-into-one">Miracle Device Coin Rolls All Your Credit Cards Into One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-warning-signs-that-you-need-to-stop-using-your-credit-cards">6 Warning Signs That You Need to Stop Using Your Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards Technology chip and pin credit credit cards gadgets spending Tue, 19 Aug 2014 13:00:04 +0000 Mark Jackson 1168782 at http://www.wisebread.com