Sunday, January 3, 2010

Why We Coupon: Part 2

As I was telling y'all last time, we were going through a very hard time financially during the summer of 2008.  My husband works on commission and delivers food to schools and restaurants and such.  When the schools are out of session, he doesn't work.  When he doesn't work, we don't get paid.  It's as simple as that.  (It's ironic that he delivers food and we barely had enough to eat.)  We didn't have money for groceries AND for bills.  I had contacted a couple of our debt collectors and deferred payments on some of our bills to alleviate the strain during the summer months.  But you know things are bad when you run out of shampoo and you find yourself digging through your couch cushions and coat pockets for spare change so you can run down to the Dollar Tree to buy some $1 shampoo.  That's when I knew something have to give.  My husband is a hard worker, the best provider any wife could ask for.  We prayed to decide whether I should go back to work full-time. In the end, we counted the cost (as Jesus said to do) and figured we would spend more money on childcare for two children than I'd be adding to the budget and that sort of defeated the purpose of me going back to work. 

That's when I called my "Coupon Queen" Donna.  She's been couponing for years and had been telling me for at least the last 3 or even 4 years that I needed to be using coupons.  Don't get me wrong, I did use coupons.  I had my grocery list of items I purchased every week.  I shopped at Walmart and handed my 4 or 5 coupons to the lady every week. And every week, I walked out with about $150 worth of groceries.  I thought I was doing good.  I thought I was spending my husband's hard earned money carefully.  Come to find out I was dumb as a brick when it came to couponing.  While I thought I was saving money by only purchasing the Great Value brand items, I only purchased specific brands of toilet paper and shampoo, using a coupon of course.   I NEVER shopped at Publix and rarely at Kroger.  "They were just too expensive", I'd say.  Donna would give me this crazy look and proceed to tell me why she didn't like to shop at Walmart.  I was offended!  How could she say such a thing!  But of course, I didn't realize I'd be uttering those same words nearly 18 months later...

Part 3.

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