News and Announcements

I decided I would separate these onto their own page, rather than cluttering up the review feed with random news that break up the "flow" for those that are just looking to browse through our award-winning critiques. So here is where you will find announcements on site changes, read info on upcoming "The Budget Reviews" live radio broadcasts, and anything else that I feel is worth sharing.


When I started this blog ten (TEN!) years ago, I expected it to die a rather quick death. Instead, it's just now starting to hit its peak (at least, in terms of content produced). Considering it was (and still is) just a part-time thing I did for fun, I never really stopped to think about the experience of actually using the site, from a visitor perspective. I kind of just naively assumed that, since Google runs the blogging software, as well as the ad software, that it would automatically work in tandem without any input needed.

Well, lately I've been taking a greater interest in the analytical side of things, and have discovered that there are apparently quite a few issues that may be hindering the user experience. I'm trying to remedy that, so that it displays smoothly across all devices (a whopping 75%+ of users access this site from mobile devices). I'm not really a technical guy when it comes to websites, so this may be a looooooong work in progress, but I'm noodling around with removing different elements to decrease page load times, and attempting to find ways to increase user engagement.

I'm also trying to work on reducing ads to a perfect balance that still earns me a decent amount of revenue, while simultaneously not inundating users with a constant barrage of them. So the setup might be changing slightly throughout the coming months as I work towards that goal. For example, I just noticed that no visitor has used the "site search" tool in the last three years, so removing that was a pretty easy decision. Hopefully many more will follow!


We have added a new radio episode to our page on Capiche! Click on the link to check it out. Somewhat ironically, we're reviewing itself, the free web tool that allows you to start your own radio show with any microphone you have available. We'll have a text-based write-up here in the coming days, but if you want to hear me ramble on about it now, feel free to do so. 


See? This is why I've always hated the thought of joining social media...virtually begging and pleading for views and likes and retweets and whatever other stupid things "success" is measured in these days. At any rate, I wanted there to be a way to connect with people, and considering I don't operate a mailing list of any kind (oooh, another strike for my marketing skills) I thought having a shitty little Twitter account might be the best way.

You can check it out here. Please, feel free to follow us on there, where we'll keep you abreast of new radio episodes, new text posts, and other show-related bonuses like trivia information, sneak peeks of upcoming posts, exclusive clips from our radio show, and much more! Furthermore, if you know of someone else who might like us, please help spread the word!


This coming Saturday (3/13/21), we will be airing another dual live show! The new episode will feature my wife and I trying the various candies contained within a bag of Colombina Fun Mix. Like the title implies, each bag contains a mix of different kinds and flavors of candy, and a 40+ piece bag is only $1 at Dollar Tree. Will we discover a diamond in the rough? Or will they be so bad we swear off sweets forever? It really could go either way.

This episode will be a great companion piece to episode #8, in which the two of us taste-tested four different types of Dollar Tree ice creams. That's right...Dollar Tree has pints of actual ice creams for only $1! (I mean, it's their generic brand, but it's actually ice cream instead of "frozen dairy dessert" like their previous "ice cream" offerings were). Were they any good? You'd be surprised...but then you also wouldn't be surprised.

In between those I took a solo look at Chuchik Toys Break Apart Cars, which are toy cars that break apart upon impact, and also took a look at Classadlister, an Android-only app for multi-channel sellers that deserved to find success, but instead seems to be headed toward the mobile graveyard. 

See all of these highlights and more, on our show page.

I'm still debating on how to go about adding "text versions" of radio show eps here, so I'll be noodling around with a few ideas in the coming days (and/or weeks) until I figure out something that works. The idea is that I want people who don't listen to the radio (like me!), or that aren't interested in the show, to still be able to find pertinent info from each ep. 

Also figuring out ways to "link" to the episode in the smoothest manner possible. Right now, embedding the file is not possible (to my knowledge) and so it looks like they will have to be through text links, which is kind of annoying that I can't just have the episodes play right there on the review page, for people that might want to listen. Oh well.

Just a heads up that things might look a little weird as I try to figure out the best way to "capture" these radio episodes in regular written review posts.

We "may" have a new episode coming your way later on today...I say might because who knows what kind of mood I'll be in in eleven hours? At any rate, should it go on, the topic will most likely be GetUpside, kind of a companion app to GasBuddy, which we took a look at on our show yesterday. Once again, it's an app that's already been reviewed here, but if you read the review, you know my experience with the app got off to a very shaky start. One update insinuated things were looking better, but nothing since then.

Is it a worthwhile app to get? Is it something you should add to your cash back arsenal? You may or may not find out later tonight!

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