Friday, August 20, 2010

Coupons and Rebates, I am just Cashing In!

As the coupon and rebate queen, I often roam my favorite stores in search of the deals that are too good to be true. These "end up being free" products are sometimes items I would not otherwise try, or perhaps things we don't really NEED, but for Free, well, for free, I will find them a home.

Costco offers amazing discounts on items when you use their seasonal, limited time offer coupons. The key to these deals is to stock up when there are no limits. I also factor our executive membership into our buying prowess. The cash back bonus check is ever so satisfying. I made Eli pose
with our most current cash prize. He had no clue that he was holding over two hundred bucks. If you ever wondered if people really earn enough to pay for the executive membership, here is the answer in COLD, CASH.

Closeouts are my forte. When I know a product has recently changed the packaging, or perhaps it is being discontinued, I can sometimes score a deal at Big Lots. I have blogged about the gluten free bargains before, only now, it seems like a ton of all natural stores and on line food retailers are going out of business. It just so happens that Big Lots buys the leftover inventory, and sells it at a fraction of the original price. I am all over it when that happens.

Here are some examples of my recent Gluten Free haul at Big Lots. We really will deplete this stock of gluten free, organic cerealin about 3 months. The Big Lots price was $2.50 a box and as much as I LOVE GIANT EAGLE, it would kill me to pay $4.69 a box there, even if they are babysitting my kids for free. Sorry, it is just business. For those of you who think going Gluten Free is expensive and a pain in the ass, you just have to learn how to shop, and stock up when you find a deal. I am sure the cashier at Big Lots thought I was all kinds of crazy, but I do not care.

This Tom's of Maine dye free, kid friendly toothpaste is upwards of five bucks a tube at Whole Foods,
and yet at Big Lots it is $2.50- so I make it worth my time to hit a few stores a week, rather than just plunking down money in one place.

In addition to the obvious sales, (like last week with the juice pouches at Whole Foods) I am all over the rebate offers. So long as the deal makes sense, I am not opposed to cutting a UPC code, filling out the offer card and mailing in the original receipt. When the rebate checks trickle in I get a real high, even if the puny checks are only $5.99. This check was for Renpure Organic shampoo,
the tag said, try this product for free. After I spent $.44 to mail the envelope, the actual product was Free. Rebates are found money in my opinion.

Last week Jeff saw the Sunday circular for H.H. Gregg. We were able to replace our DVD player for $15 after the mail in rebate. Hopefully, this new DVD player will be impervious to silly bands, as our last model was ruined when an un-named toddler decided to see if you could watch a silly band on television, via the DVD player. The answer is no, you can not. But for $15 you can chuck the old one in the trash and start over.

Sometimes there are simple pleasures in clipping coupons and doing the basic math. Here is another one of my near-freebies. This week Giant Eagle is offering the "shit your brains out" Fiber One bars on sale, four boxes for $12. So for $3 a box Jeff can get 35% of his dietary fiber in one tasty (?) bar. But wait, $3 a box is not that impressive. I had four, $.50 off coupons, one for each box. Giant Eagle double those, so that each box is now $2.
To sweeten the deal even more, this week they are offering an additional $.20 fuel perk when you buy four boxes. We get a twenty cent discount for each gallon of gas we buy, up to 30 gallons. Of course with my handy dandy gas cans and an empty Sienna, I am able to score all thirty gallons, for another $6 in our pocket. This brings the fiber one bars to fifty cents a box. Thank you very much. My husband can now crap all he wants for a mere fifty cents a box. Oh the joy!

I play this little math game of spending and saving all day, every day. It is my porn. Some may think that clipping coupons is a waste of time and energy. Until we have an unlimited resource of money, I am not ashamed to take ten minutes to save enough to make it worth my while. It is actually a challenge that I find quite gratifying. Call me cuckoo if you want, but I am laughing all the way to the bank.

I am typically not one to waste my moo-lah on lottery tickets, but I did save enough to feel okay about purchasing a powerball ticket. When I win the $100 million dollar jackpot, I will probably still clip coupons and look for steals, I am insane like that.

Sit back, read my blog and you might just learn a few new tricks. Just watch and see, I am cashing in.

1 comment:

Just call me Mommy said...

I loved this post. My friend laughs because I spend like 2 hours each week cutting coupons, going thru fliers, comparing prices and stores. But at the end of the day, I save us money! I love coming home and saying "Look! I just saved $44 today buying things we need and use! Just because I spent the time cutting out coupons!" I especially love it when a product ends up being free, or I even get money back from it! I really should keep track of how much I save each week and 'pay' myself at the end of the year with a trip or something nice!

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