Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Semi-Extreme Couponing

Today, I had my first ever experience with semi-extreme couponing.

I have watched the show (you all know the one) and marveled over those people who buy things with coupons, and pay very little money or even get their items for free.

I have stared at the television in disbelief as I watched a lady buy 50 bottles of mustard, for just her and her husband....and HE didn't even like mustard!

I have a friend who gave me a ton of Sunday papers that were just going to be thrown away. Since they contained coupons, my friend rescued them, and passed them out to her friends who wanted them. So, I thought I would try my hand at some semi-extreme couponing.

I am not one to beg the neighbors for their coupons, or go "dumpster diving" just to save a buck. But, if you want to give me FREE coupons, that can save me some money? I will gladly take them off your hands :)

I love using coupons, but I do not like how long it takes to use them. First, you have to match them up with the sales ads. Then, you have to cut them all out. Next, you have to pick the ones that you will take to the store with you.....and actually remember to take them. Minor detail, but very important if you want to save any money.

The store where you can save the most money using coupons in our area, is not one that I frequent, so I don't know where everything is. Add that to the LARGE number of coupons I was trying to handle, and it added up to a pretty hectic shopping trip.

Oh, did I mention that this is also the week of Thanksgiving, and half the town was also there trying to get their holiday goodies? Yeah....

But....after a mere 4 hours of shopping (oh brother) I managed to save $48.98 in coupons.

With all of the store promotions, and other non-coupon savings, I saved a grand total of $118.97. Not bad for a day's work.

The lady at the register told me that I was the first person to exceed the cash register savings limit. I can't see how that is possible, since I have friends who, I am sure, have saved WAY more money in coupons than I did, but maybe she was using the grand total savings amount instead of just coupons? Not sure. No balloons or confetti dropped from the ceiling, so that was a tad disappointing. I think I should get some sort of prize, don't you?

I need to become more familiar with the store's coupon policy, because I think that I didn't save quite as much as I was supposed to. I guess they will only double so many coupons for so many items, or something like that.

But, even with that, I still saved a bunch of money, so I am happy. I still had to spend $156.36 though. Definitely NOT like on the show where they pay $3 for $1,000 worth of groceries.

I had to buy quite a few things that I didn't have coupons for though, and I even got some stocking stuffer things, and one present, so not too bad.

While I was on the way to the car, I saw a ten dollar bill floating down the parking lot. Yes....it was literally floating. It was raining so hard, I felt like I had taken a shower with my clothes on....while pushing two carts in the parking lot.

I asked the lady who had just passed by me if she had dropped her money, and she said, "Oh, probably". Ha! Hope it was hers. She had an envelope of money with her (probably her "grocery" envelope a la Dave Ramsey ) so I'm pretty sure it was.

It was a pretty eventful trip, and now my freezer and fridge are filled to overflowing.

Not to mention we have enough deodorant to last us at least six months.

So, any of you coupon pros out there want to give a newbie some advice on how to make couponing easier?


  1. lol! ;D You go, girl on the coupons!

    I had my own Dave Ramsey 'envelope' last year too, and remember the constant fumblin'...I finally tossed it and just use my wallet, and even THEN....I forget to pull the cash out and end up using my debit card :(

    Not much up for coupons myself, as mainly I only rarely use the products they're promoting, and most often buy my toiletries at Costco in bulk.

    I like the way you're doing it though, as I actually get a bit vomitous at watching the Extreme Couponer show (and I DO watch it nontheless-lol!)...because I believe most of the are greedy, and/or hoarders, and full of fear by not trusting of God's provsion more than anything, as it's actually a GOOD thing to put money INTO the economy.

    But, that said, I know where many of their hearts are at as we too have struggled over the past few years and even lost our home.

    Hope you get all the 'tricks' worked out, as an extra 50$ a week, or even a MONTH! Would be awesome! :D

  2. We use very little cash at our house. We use our Discover card for everything we can, and then pay it off each month. They give us cash back on our purchases, so why not? If there comes a time though that we can't pay it in full, we will definitely stop doing it, because they charge a whole lot in interest :/

    Last night, I watched an episode where they donated all of their items to a food bank. How neat is that! I still don't understand WHERE they got 1,200 coupons for the exact same item though!

  3. Good for you!!!!! I am impressed!! I tried to do the extreme couponing but ended up with large amounts of things I didn't need. I still use coupons, but I don't nearly do as well as you have.

  4. That Discover cards a good plan!

    As for the donating part of the show...I don't want to judge people's 'giving,' but when I see people 'visually' in front of the world (TV) donating all their goods to a Food Bank-well, let's just say that's only AFTER they've reached the end of their hoarded resources (and storage plans ;) )...and might also be fearing 'judgements' from the world after their 'episode' plays...a good 'cover-up' if you ask me.

    And...it's giving 'what isn't theirs to give.' Those companies give the deals so that you'll try their new product at a discount and/or to get you INTO their product. It wasn't intended for people to buy in mass quantities. Because of the manipulative way in which it's done-me no likey for that purpose-and I don't believe it's a way in which to please the Father.

    People need to give from THEIR resources, not on the hand of someone else. :( I think it's important to always check our hearts intentions before we give. And as the heart 'can be most deceiving of all', to ask the Lord to check our heart.

    But, that's no judgement on you! :D I understand the way in which you're doing it-an honest and healthy one-the whole 'donating' thing has just been a trigger from under my ribs that I've been piecing together over the months as I've been watching it-lol!

    Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving!