When I was a sophomore in college, I bought an air popcorn maker for $3 at the thrift shop. The RA gave me a difficult time about if that was really allowed in the dorms. There was a long list of small appliances that were not allowed in the dorm rooms, but thankfully popcorn makers were not in that list. Over the next three years my roommates and I made hundreds of bowls of popcorn. I'm sure buying popcorn in a big bag saved us tons of money vs. buying microwave popcorn.
When Lamb 1 had his dairy problems we stopped having popcorn so often. We couldn't put real butter on it nor could we have microwave popcorn. Then a few years ago I heard about the terrible chemicals in the microwave popcorn. So a few years ago we pulled out that air popper that I had in college and began making popcorn for a treat again.
I'm sad to report that that popcorn maker that I bought used 20 years ago died today. I definitely got my $3 worth. I will be on the hunt for another air popper at the thrift shop. I'm expecting to have to pay $5 now at the thrift shop. I'm wondering if we'll get another 20 years out of a new used one? I'm also going to see if Ram's parents are still using their top of the stove popcorn maker.