When I thought of cell phones, I knew I wanted the service of Verizon. In our area, that really is the only thing that has decent service. My husband did some research and finally convinced me that Verizon is not the only way to go. He is sharing with you today what he shared with me.
When my wife and I first started “talking” with each other, communication was (and still is) very important to our relationship. Initially our communication was kept to Facebook messages, but as time went on, and as our relationship grew, we desired to stay in contact more. Little notes being left for one another, a text message here and there, and phone calls were our primary means of communication. My wife had been a long time customer of the cellular giant, Verizon, but I have always hated contracts. Call it a commitment issue (I call it being cheap), but I like to keep MY money in MY pocket. I had Verizon back in the day, but hated paying almost $50 a month for a single phone. Long story short, I paid out of the contract. I have used several prepaid cellular companies (Tracfone, Net10, and Virgin Mobile) since that time and have had ok service with them, but the one downside has always been coverage. Living in a rural area, where the nearest tower is 3 miles away, service is shoddy at best, unless you choose to pay $50+ a month for Verizon. After my wife and I were married, we had the opportunity to go back into the Verizon network, but at a discounted group rate through a business plan. We decided to try it. After a month being on the plan, we were told that we would have to be on our own plan as the business needed the extra lines. My wife and I calculated the costs. Wow! $100-120 for two of us to have BASIC phones would not cut it! We had no land line phone and needed good coverage with good service. My wife and I refused to pay big bucks, but I knew I would NEVER convince a long time Verizon customer that it was ok to cut the cord. (You are probably thinking the same thing right now.) As a previous prepaid consumer, I knew there had to be an option out there that was just as reliable as Verizon, but at a cheaper cost. I only had to convince my wife of this, however. No easy task! The search began. My criteria included: good service/coverage in our rural area, cheap, no contracts, and able to keep the same phone number. Almost all of the prepaid providers are good inside of larger towns, but migrate away from those areas and you have nothing more than a paperweight. The ONLY company that matched all of my criteria was PagePlus Cellular. This is a company I had never heard of before, but decided to do more investigating. After weeks of researching and comparing, deliberating whether or not it was wise to consider going away from Verizon, we bought a cheap, previously owned, Verizon phone and tested it out. (Any phone that has been used on Verizon, or that is equipped to work on Verizon’s network, will work on PagePlus.) The result...it operated on the Verizon network!!!!! I could not believe it. There had to be a catch! There had to be a loophole that Verizon does not know about or something. The catch is this...the company, PagePlus, had signed an agreement that they will not use Verizon’s name in any dealings with their customers, and that they will not “knowingly allow the use of iPhone or Blackberry devices” on their network. That’s it! The NAME of the giant is not allowed. To me, that little catch is not a hindrance at all! The one little agreement with Verizon about the use of an iPhone or Blackberry is what scares off a few people; however, these phones will still work on their network, and data speeds (3G only) are equally comparable to Verizon because it is Verizon’s network. So what are our thoughts on being customers of PagePlus? I personally could not be happier. We are using the same phones that we used while on Verizon, and whenever we want to change/upgrade our phones, all we need to do is go to eBay, or another PagePlus dealer, and buy a good quality used Verizon phone. I have an iPhone 4 and I love it. The same great Verizon service at a fraction of the cost. Great service, great price, and no contract! Who could argue with that!? The Pros! 1) The coverage...as discussed earlier, it is the same as Verizon. See for yourself if you do not believe me. Page Plus Coverage vs Verizon Wireless Coverage. It’s the same map! 2) The cost...with Verizon for 2 basic phones on their Share Everything plan is $110 per month ($30 for each phone x 2 phones + $50/month for Shareable data). If one person has a smart phone, that cost increases to $120/month. So, on their basic plan, with their cheapest phones you are looking at the following equation ($110/month x 24 month contract = $2640). Note: that cost does not include their “hidden fees and surcharges”. And guess what, their prepaid plans are the same cost! Whoa! Who wants to pay that?! You may be saying, “we have no choice!” But wait...with PagePlus there are other options. You can have monthly renewable plans starting at $12/month (The 12) or up to $69.95/month for unlimited talk/text and 5gb of data! But the options are not limited to monthly use. What if you are only in need of a phone for emergencies? (i.e. senior citizens, little children staying at a friends house, etc.) PagePlus has you covered yet. Just buy a PIN! For $10, you can have available 100 minutes of talk time for 120 days of service. Texting can still be done on the PINs but half a minute is deducted for each text sent/received. PagePlus offers many different options for plans. My wife and I like the Talk-n-Text 1200 plan. We get 1200 minutes of talk, 3000 text messages, and 250mb of data for $29.95/month. I know I know, many people feel that they NEED Unlimited Everything, but the truth is, many cell phone users do not hit 1200 minutes of talk, or 3000 text messages per month. (And, 250mb of data is not much, but you learn to control accessing the internet, and find time for more constructive things, like actually talking to people!) For data, I mostly am on my cell phone inside of WiFi networks, so I rarely even touch the data portion of my plan. So, what will PagePlus cost us? Minus the initial cost of the cell phones... $29.95/month for each phone x 2 phones x 24 months = $1437.60. And yes, that is the biggest reason we switched to this company! A savings of >$1200 per 2 year contract. No hidden fees or surcharges! We signed up for an automatic payment plan through PagePlus which raises the cost per month to $31.97 per line. That is still a whopping savings! PagePlus does offer a plan that is unlimited talk and text with 2gb of data for $55/month, which would put you right at the same cost of the Verizon basic plan (without additional hidden fees), but unless you need unlimited everything, there is no reason to pay for more than what you need. 3) No contract! Not much to say about this other than I am grateful we will not need to pay out of contracts any time soon! The cons? 1) In my opinion, there are two small cons. The first is no Visual Voicemail (iPhone exclusive), however voicemail still works without a hitch. My solution, either use Google Voice as my voicemail (great service and free), or just call my voicemail everytime I have a missed call. No big deal. The other con (once again can be dealt with) is when you first sign up with PagePlus, an automated voice announces your current minutes before you make a phone call. This can be annoying, but if you do not need the reminder, or find it frustrating, you can call PagePlus and have it removed. This can be a help or hindrance, depending on how you look at it. 2) One item that my wife has missed is that of “My Verizon”. This is the service that provides a back-up in the “cloud” of all of your numbers, account information, etc. Instead of using this service (that you really pay for in the long run) there are free apps available that allow you to manage this (like Google Voice). The only other item that I wish PagePlus would improve is their customer service. PagePlus is located in Toledo, Ohio, and their customer service is based there, but if you plan on getting in touch with someone, be prepared to wait for an hour on hold. Communication is done best through email, I have found, or contact a PagePlus dealer. Ok, I know you are wondering, “is he done rambling yet?” The conclusion is finally here! Overall, my wife and I have enjoyed the benefits of the Verizon network, but we did not want to pay the exorbitant fees included with being a customer of theirs. Cost, coverage and service are fantastic with PagePlus and as long as they are providing cell phone service under Verizon, at a fraction of the cost, we will remain loyal customers to them. ~ Mr. NotAfraidOfTheSnow
My daddy raised me to believe that Jif is the best peanut butter. I do really like their natural version. One of these days, I may try to make my own. Until then, I will enjoy getting peanut butter with coupons.
I have to pace myself with the glider recover. And I have to push myself! I have one of the three parts done. And probably the easiest part. I just want to get it done, but that only means one thing. I must get to work!!
Last weeks goals:
Keep up with my crunches and push ups and then run twice. Just trying to get myself out the door in this cold! It felt so good to get out and run. Although, breathing in the cold wasn't too much fun :)
Fix the nail holes in the kitchen so that I can paint the trim sometime in the near future. Painting is coming this week!
Find out about auction houses and when I can drop off stuff. Ready to take next Monday
Finish all the doll party plans- Looking forward to having this event!
Recover the ottoman part of my glider- sweet relief!!
Clean out my closet
Focus on making healthy meals for the week
This weeks goals:
Push ups and crunches 5 days. Run twice.
Paint the trim in the kitchen and bathroom
Redo a frame
Make wine jelly
Recover the glider seat. Dreading this
Crochet a dishcloth using a pattern
My infinity scarf has been voted in the top 14 projects of t-shirt and sweater redos. I would love if you could go over here and vote for my scarf. You would make my day :) Mine is currently in second place!
Also, don't forget to enter my giveaway! Chance to win some amazing homespun yarn!
Man, do I feel like a teacher who is giving you everything that you need to do for the evening!
My grandmother in law was given lots of fabric scraps. She passed the ones that she did not want on to me. They are taking over my closet, but I am having so much fun in using the free fabric to make other things!
Among all of those scraps were some quilt tops. Nothing too elaborate or extremely well done, but I still could not part with them.
I have been hanging on to them for a few months with no great idea of what to do. Ok, I have some ideas, but nothing that made me want to cut them up to do.
On my dining room table, I had a winter bowl full of pine cones, burlap, and pine branches. I had to get rid of my pine branches on the table, because the branches were very dried out. I couldn't leave my table bare, but wasn't sure what to do.
And then I remembered about those quilts. I took one of the strips and put it on my table as a table runner.
I also took the bowl that had the pine branches in and put in apples. Of course I washed it first :) Makes me think of fall.
I could probably sew the edges and make it look more professional, but I like the look that it presents. Reminds me of what we can do for free if we just look around.
I would love to hear your ideas for my other quilt tops. I have individual squares all the way to whole quilt tops.
You always hear, don't judge a book by it's cover. I have never been so influenced by the cover of a book. I made it to the last fifty pages and was still having a hard time getting past that I didn't like the cover...or maybe it was the title...or maybe a little of both. Have you ever been so judgmental of a book by it's cover?
Needless to say, I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Callie was born into a rich family. Her family gave up everything to go the the mission field in Africa. Callie was left to work and be a nanny for three children in order to survive.
Callie struggles with finding exactly what God wants her to do with her life. I could relate to this aspect of her life.
The family she works for vacations at a resort during the winter. Robberies on the island add a little adventure to the book. Always a plus in my book!
By the end of the book, Callie has figured out the plan that God has for her life. If it were always that easy!
I would recommend this book, just don't judge it by the cover!
Thanks, Bethany House for allowing me to read this book.
How I wish that I could win this giveaway. That might look a little fishy though, huh?!! Anyone want to win this and then give it to me?
A friend of mine from back in the day makes this amazing yarn. You can find different things she is working on at Twisted Threads. I got to feel some homespun yarn the other week. Man is it soft!
This is the description of the yarn.Caribbean Green super soft handspun wool with the colors of lime green, green-blue, and ice blue. One of a kind! Spun thick and thin. 4-5WPI 2oz. 62 yards This yarn is sure to liven up your project! You have until February 19th to enter the giveaway. Make sure you check back in, because Twisted Threads will be giving away more yarn soon! a Rafflecopter giveaway
I did really well on my goals for last week. I am amazed how much I can put something off, then I put it on here and I know that people see what I am doing and if I am getting it done or not. Just a little motivation to keep me going!
I would love to hear in the comments about something that you have been putting off but are resolved to get done this week.
Last weeks goals:
Exercise 5 days this week
Install Google Analytic on my blog - this is one thing I dreaded doing. I don't understand all this computer stuff!
Make an about me page on my blog- you can check this out here
Finish the waistband on my skirt
Make a set of napkins- I actually made 2!
Figure out how to sprout my seeds- I just rinsed them and they are sprouting a little. Wahoo!
Look at some ideas for gardening- tentative plan in place. Have to see how much it changes come this spring!
This weeks goals:
Keep up with my crunches and push ups and then run twice. Just trying to get myself out the door in this cold!
Fix the nail holes in the kitchen so that I can paint the trim sometime in the near future.
Find out about auction houses and when I can drop off stuff.
Finish all the doll party plans
Recover the ottoman part of my glider- this is my put off thing this week that I really need to get done...
Seems like a swiffer is something that most households own anymore. Swiffers are great, but I hate using a cover and throwing it away. Are you with me on this one? Here are some options that you can use.
The first one is my favorite. Simply take a microfiber cloth and wrap it around your swiffer. The picture on the right is what I collected. Gross! The part I love about this one is that I can wash the cloth and use it for many other things.
The second cloth is made from fleece and flannel. Simply cut the fleece large enough to fit around the swiffer and then sew flannel onto the bottom. This is a little more fun of an option. I have a few of these for sale over in my etsy shop.
This last one is super fun. I pinned it on pinterest and one of my friends commented, "I love this idea but it would pain me to crochet something and rub it on the floor!" I am with her on that. If you are a quick crocheter and would like the pattern, it is available here.
Are you a swiffer user? What do you use on your swiffer?
During college, I became acquainted with Kay Arthur as an author. I really enjoyed the Bible study that a group of us girls did using her book. If you aren't familiar with Kay Arthur, you can check out her website.
I received this book in the mail and have been taking the time to read through it since. Daily, Kay presents a truth from God's Word to focus your attention. My favorite thing about this book is that she incorporates the Scripture passage right into the reading. The challenge for the day is based completely on the Scripture passage.
I need to daily be reminded that I am not sufficient on my own and that I need to look to the Lord to control my day.
What about you? What are some things that you do for your time with God each day?
I love using swagbucks to get gift cards. Some of you are probably wondering what swagbucks is all about. You can read my previous post about how I earn swagbucks. You can also go here to sign up.
One of my friends has the goal of paying for all of her family's gas this year with swagbucks gift cards. I am pretty impressed by this goal.
I recently discovered an app that helps me quickly earn swagbucks. I have my husbands iPod touch that I use sometimes. Right now I use it a lot to play swagbucks tv.
I can watch 5 videos to earn 2 swagbucks, up to 50 swagbucks a day. I just turn the volume down and the videos continually play. In 9 days, I can earn a $5 amazon gift card without doing a whole lot. I will take it!
If you are interested, go here and you can start earning.
How are you using swagbucks to earn you swagbucks?
I wanted to do something thoughtful for Valentine's Day that centered around his need for words of encouragement.
I know this isn't the best picture, but who wants to stand outside in 14 degree weather to get a good picture? Not me! Everyday until Valentine's Day, I am going to put a heart on our back door that tells my husband something that I love and appreciate about him. Yes, you can kinda see the writing on the heart.
By Valentine's Day, my door will look much better by the 14th!
Anybody in with me on this doing this idea? You could adjust it to fit your own lifestyle.