Monday, August 6, 2012

Q Crazy

Have you seen the extreme coupon shows on TV?  Well, once a upon a time, that was me.  Sorta.  I never was excessive, like most of the people featured on those shows, but I did stockpile.  Even had a nifty binder to prove it.  Still do, it's just empty.  For now.

I was always a kind Q-er, never depleting the shelves, just so I could have 50 bottles of shampoo.  I spent the time deal-scouring and coupon clipping to save my family money.  And I helped people in need.  Being married to a firefighter, there were so many times we'd see a family lose everything.  Having a stockpile allowed me to put together care packages for them.  Or to let other family members "shop" at my house for free.

Over time I just phased out of it.  I still enjoyed a good deal when I found it but I no longer spent hours cutting and sorting coupons.  For a long time, we just lived off the bulk I had stored under all of our beds.  Then, bit by bit, I found myself adding deodorant, or razors, or toothpaste to my shopping list.  At first it bothered me, knowing if I spent a little time I could get it for free.  But the busyness of life trumped spending the hours it took to coupon.  Instead, I occasionally pricematched and picked the lowest prices on the shelves.  And we saved in other ways to make up for it.

Sometimes it takes a a kick in the pants to change things.  Tim's upcoming surgery has been my kick. 

This weekend, being one of the biggest shopping trips of the year for us because of school, sparked my savvy skills to go into full blown savings mode.  And save I did!  If it wasn't on sale, it didn't go in my cart.  I even passed up finishing off the kid's supply list because I knew paper would go cheaper.  Sunday I was happy to see .25 cent packs.  Supply list done - under $25 total - check.

Yesterday I spent nearly two hours comparing sales ads and writing out a best price list to match at Wal-Mart.  With my binder empty and the Qs on low supply in the paper this week, that was my only choice to save at the grocery.  But, free coffee, shampoo, yogurt, and $3 frozen pizzas later, I was very joyful with what I shaved off my price tag.  Sorry to the friend who got stuck behind me in line though!

It will take some time but finding a great deal and knowing it's helping my family's bottom line, is worth it.  When the space under our beds is filled with more than dust bunnies, I'll feel a sense of success.  And when hubby is bored from the doctor-ordered rest, I'll hand him a pair of scissors to help.

What are ways you save your family money?  Are you crazy over coupons...or scared of how to start saving? 


Anna See said...

i have lost my thrifty ways since jack died. i buy for the convenience now. i guess that will change back with time. xo

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