Monday, July 11, 2011

Aww, Look At The Baby! Pt. 1

Okay, I know you all are "awww-ing" in unison, and yes, that insanely adorable baby is none other than yours truly.  I was my Grandma and PaPa's little princess and the apple of my parents' eyes, for I was the first born child and the first born grandchild on my Mom's side of the family.  I also happened to be the first girl grandchild on my Dad's side of the family, but who's really keeping score of how awesome I am?

The subject of this post makes me revert back to those days in certain ways because when you're just a young-un as I was in the photo above, everything is a new experience and you have so much to learn about everything!  You're vulnerable and you need guidance and protection from harm.  So, what exactly are we talking about here that would send me back to baby-dom in all its terrifying glory?

COUPONING.  Yes, folks, I said it.  My name is Chicken Wing and I am a baby couponer.

The photo I chose for this post is actually quite fitting as I actually first learned of couponing from my maternal Grandma who was married to the wonderful man holding me up in that picture (my beloved PaPa).  For this post, we'll call her Grandma-the-Great.  If there is one constant that has always been associated with my Grandma in my life, it's that she is a lean, mean, couponing machine!  (And she can cook some amazing Southern staples, let me tell you - she is a Jedi in the kitchen).

Anywho, Grandma-the-Great has oft preached about the values of couponing.  "Chicken Wing, it's like they are giving you money to shop with," she would exclaim.  I oftentimes would scoff at her outbursts or would just brush them off with a nod and a, "You're right, Grandma."

Fast forward quite a bit more than a decade, and yours truly was a twenty-something trying to make it in this big ole world (fairly unsuccessfully if you're looking at the world through monetary-measuring glasses).  I was actually contacted by my part-time job boss while we were in the midst of planning one of our biggest events - the Women's Show!  She had been bogged down by a ton of tasks that were running over in time, and she would no longer be able to take our special celebrity guest of the show on her errands.  Who was this guest, you ask?

The COUPON QUEENY, I answer!!!  Hello, people, she has received SO MUCH PRESS for her amazing couponing efforts!  Not buying what I'm selling you?  Check out her website here.

So, little-ole-me got to take famous-ole-her out shopping for hours and I quickly came to realize that I had found another couponing sensei to teach this little grasshoppa how to save money with coupons.  This was so awesome, I have changed the name of these little magic pieces of paper to cool-pons.  I'm sure this will catch on.  (When the terminology sweeps the nation, make sure you let people know that Chicken Wing started the revolution.)

We shopped at Kroger, Food Lion, and Dollar General, and what a day it was.  At Kroger, I believe we got $300 worth of groceries for $100. At Food Lion, we stocked up on free toilet paper.  At Dollar General, we got a handful of items, and the store ended up owing us so much money, we had to each buy a bottled soda and a candy bar, just so we could break even (apparently, you can't leave the store with them owing you money, and DG can't pay you overage in cash.  Overage, I learned, is when a store owes you money because you saved so much.  Wal-Mart will actually pay you cash!) Are you finding this to be a tall tale?

I know, right!  Source.
Check out the photographic evidence that this day of shopping did, in fact, happen.

Yes, this is my PT job boss, my biz partner, the Coupon Queeny, yours truly, & my three PT job colleagues holding the longest receipt ever - OURS!
Thus began my own personal cool-poning journey.  I'm not making any more money (thank you, Econo Me McSuckerson), so every penny counts these days.  Financially, it has been an exceptionally stressful couple of years, and I've decided to make the most of my hard-earned cash.  Sure, I could join the "in-crowd" and not work, have ten kids out of wedlock, and be way richer than I am right now by living off the government (I may have pondered it once or twice after witnessing so many people who are living large and not working for a cent of their income).  But, I was raised better than that and I will just make do with what I've been given (because I'm sure there are plenty of folks who would kill to walk in my shoes).

If you'd like to know more about my journey, what methods and resources I'm using, and how it's going so far, stay tuned!

Until next time,

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