So, my cousin has been hounding me forever to blog some more. And I've been dragging my feet. I have not felt very blog-worthy for a while. But the other day, something happened. And I thought "this will make a great blog!". So. Here we are. Please don't get so excited that when you get finished reading you think... Is that all? THIS is what she blogged about after being absent for soooooo long? and then you're disappointed. I don't want anyone to be disappointed. Well, my mom and my big sister might be, because they already heard this story. Straight from me. But, they'll probably laugh again anyway.
Now before I build this up too big, you have to know I'm going to write about coupons. I know! You're excited, right??? (You're thinking "Tara! After being gone so long you're writing about coupons??? Do you have a life???" to which I will reply... YES! but not an exciting one where I get to go be a spy, or go skiing, or visit a foreign country or something.) So, coupons it is.
My husband believes all the credit for my coupon adventure should go to him. I guess, technically I should give the kudos to him. And I did feel a little like Sandra Bullock's character in The Blind Side when she had to tell her husband, "You were right" and he asked "How did that taste" and she replied, "Like vinegar". My mother gets some credit, too. They've been telling me here and there over the years to coupon. My thing is I shop a lot at Aldi(s) (have to put the "s" at the end, or it doesn't sound complete. But I know the store sign has no "s" it!) and some other grocery stores. But we have a very tight grocery budget, and I really try to stick as close as I can to it. And I make a list of only the essentials before I go to the store, and I stick to that list! I don't buy a lot of processed food or boxed food. (My oldest is now allergic to soy, along with a whole list of other foods.) I use generic. I'm proud of it! Well. We don't have cable or satellite, but we do have Netflix. And once in a while new programming is added to the service. A few weeks ago I noticed a new show called Extreme Couponing--or is it Couponers? I can't remember right now. One or the other. And I turned it on, and I was in AWE. We're talking ladies and men who spend hours upon hours clipping and sorting coupons, and then scouring the store sales ads, and then walking through the store on a pre-shopping trip, to be able to buy cart loads of products and then use their coupons so they only have to pay like, a penny. My heart did a little flutter. My head gave a challenge. I said "I can do this!" I don't think I can swing the just pay a penny part, but I think I can do better than my current style.
So, last Sunday we purchased three newspapers and clipped coupons. Then I got online and found more. I compared what I had to the sales ads and made a plan. I made lists out for what I thought was the best fit. And I am not ashamed to admit I did spend a lot of time doing all this prep. A lot. Like more than 6 hours. I waited in excited anticipation for Tuesday afternoon to arrive. Tuesday. My go-to-town-and-cram-as-many-errands-as-possible-day. That particular Tuesday, the kids and I left for town a little earlier than usual. My oldest and I were getting our hair done (Shout Out to my cousin, Bobby Houston at Rock-N-Rollers in Sedalia, MO), then a few errands, then I was to drop my oldest off so she could sew and I would go grocery shopping. At the hair salon I saw we were "scattered about" with books and binders, and coats and stuff, and we needed to consolidate our things so the people at the salon wouldn't think we were trying to take over. My binder (with my coupons and plan of attack-er-uh-grocery list) and book got stuck in my daughter's purse. Other things got straightened up, and we no longer were scattered. I didn't think too much of it. After lunch, and a trip to the library, and whatever else we did, I drove my daughter seven miles back out of town to her destination, I grabbed my binder from her purse, kicked her out of the car, and I headed back into town to go shopping!!!! Found my parking space, unbuckled the other kids, and we marched inside the supermarket and got a cart. I wanted to find out if my internet coupons would be accepted before I filled my cart. I waited my turn at the customer service counter, and finally was able to ask. I opened my binder, but alas! To my dismay, there was only ONE coupon and my list. My heart and stomach sank. I blinked a few times, opened and closed and re-opened my binder, and was trying to keep cheerful as I realized my coupons (all my hours and hours of hard work!) had fallen out into my daughter's purse--SEVEN miles away. The bright side?? The one coupon I had was for a dollar off of two bags of Halloween candy--that was already on sale! So, I did use it! And I picked up a few other things as well. I knew I was going back to town a few days later, so I could hold my horses and wait til Friday to venture back to that store.
Well, there you have it. My first couponing story. Are you happy I shared? I can give you "the rest of the story", but it will have to wait for another time. Its getting late, and I know you're getting tired of all the sentences starting with "and". My dad is the produce man at that store, so the trip was not entirely wasted, because we got to see him. And we got chocolate. The end.
- ► 2010 (31)