Friday, July 26, 2013

I Need to Dust my Stash

It was just an ordinary weekend afternoon. I was bored and two of my friends invited me over to hang out for awhile. We sat in the "man cave" as the hubby of the house fondly calls it, and once he went to go grab food, his wife and I switched Netflix from his shows to something we thought we would enjoy. It was then that I was introduced to Extreme Couponing.

I know... I'm late to the party. Sue me.

I had heard of the show and knew the premise, but I hadn't watched it before. By the time the hubby got back from getting food, he was watching the show with us and saying how we needed to get on that coupon train. He then suggested I write a blog post about it.

Oh. My. Goodness.

If I didn't think people were crazy before, I sure do now.

Now, I'm not going to lie. The idea of getting thousands of dollars worth of merchandise and only paying about $10 or less is pretty appealing. Many of them started because they ran into financial hardship and wanted to help make ends meet. Which totally make sense! I could save so much money on groceries and use it to buy more books...

Or pay off student loans and my car.

Priorities, yo.

However, something didn't sit with me right with these ladies (and the occasional man).

First, there's "the stash." Apparently, the key to couponing is buying in bulk. Which means these families have piles and piles of items. Toothpaste, soap, cereal, canned goods, etc. There was one lady who even dusted her stash, had to rotate the items so she knew when they expired, and claimed it was like a member of her family.

Yes, I see hundreds of shampoo bottles as my family too.

Granted - there were some people who gave a lot of their goods to charities, let their kids come home from college and "shop" through the stash, and if they ever find themselves back in the cold war in the middle of a bomb attack their family will be set for life.

 I noticed some people while they are getting their "haul" (look at me using the lingo and everything!)... they tend to get a bit... tense.

Needing to watch the check out screen to be sure every detail goes they way they planned, having envelopes filled with coupons, taking over several lanes at a time, shopping for 7 hours straight, bossing people around, friends and family members getting nervous because they're afraid they'll mess something up, calling their husband "coupon holder..."

Yup... that really happened. "Come here coupon holder!"

Oh, and apparently recruiting your children to dig through the garbage to help you get coupons is a thing too.

Family bonding at its best!

There were a few people on the show that I genuinely was scared of. If they had to pay a whole dollar for something - watch out!

Also, did you realize how much time and math is involved in extreme couponing? They have these huge spreadsheets to organize everything, and they scour websites and newspaper ads like it's their full time job. They have to do so many calculations to be sure that they stay on their budget. 

I could never handle that many numbers. 

Beyond the craziness, it just felt wrong to me. While I was a bit jealous for all of the money they were saving on groceries, I couldn't help but feel like it was cheating the system. It was almost like stealing. 

(Also, those poor cashiers. If I were one of them and I saw a lady approaching my cash register, I'd run as fast as I could!) 

I'm all for getting the good deals, using the system, and being frugal. There's a lot I could learn from it. But how far is too far? 

Do you think these extreme couponing families are right on, or do you think they're crossing a line?

My friend told his wife and I that we should get on this. 

Only if you're my coupon holder!


Also, join in on this awesome blog-hop hosted by Chelsea (Lost in Travels) who I have been sponsoring the last two months!

We Took the Road Less Traveled


  1. Hey Emily, I'm a newest follower on GFC from the weekend hop. LOLing at the e-card! Love that show too!

    I'd love it if you can follow me back :)


  2. I completely agree. I personally don't think saving that much money would be worth loosing the peace of mind that extreme couponing would cost me. I understand wanting (and *needing*) to save money. But so many people on those shows seem to buy anything that is on sale, whether they actually need it or not. And then it clears out the product for someone who might actually NEED new toothbrushes or shampoo for their family. Definitely not for me.

  3. Haha I know exactly what you mean. I live in the UK so we don't really have "couponing" but when I watched this programme I was literally like you must be crazy! Who wants to spend half a day doing groceries and spend the rest of the week thinking of the best way to do next weeks groceries?!? It's just tiring to watch


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