My Pantry Overfloweth

Monday, August 9, 2010

If you are not into "couponing," then this is all going to sound crazy to you. So let me explain. There is a philosophy out there about using coupons. That you should collect coupons, and save them for when an item goes on sale. Then you can buy the item at half price, use a coupon, and get it for even less. Or, if you are really with it, you can "stack" your coupons: Buy cereal when it is on sale for half price, use a manufacturer's coupon, a store coupon, and a competitor's coupon - and suddenly that box of Raisin Bran is only 25 cents! So you buy six! And it is so exciting!!

Okay, not really. But it is nice to see the "You Saved" part of your receipt reach respectable digits. I'm not in the big leagues: snagging $100 in groceries for $7, for example (and she bought healthy stuff - I need to spend more time on her blog!) but I do feel good about saving some money. I often call Hubby on the way home from the store to tell him how much I saved.

Then I hide the four bottles of ketchup.

For me, that can be the trouble with couponing - I come home with a lot of groceries, but nothing to eat. Read more about saving reasonably, here.

So, imagine my relief when I recently found a great use for my "but it was only 25 cents!" stockpile. No, no, not a bizarre art project. Something better. Our church has regular "brown bag drives" for the local food bank. You take the bag home, fill it up with the requested groceries, and bring it back the next Sunday. Twice now, I've been able to do that from my pantry. You want mayonnaise, pasta sauce, and jello? I've got it!

This is not a new idea. Most couponing websites (Southern Savers, Wiggens Weekley, Money Saving Mom, just to name a few of the 8 billion out there) note that the more you save, the more you have to give. If you can get your school supplies for 50% off, then why not buy 50% more and donate the extra to a back-to-school drive? Great idea, but I never seem to remember that when I'm in the store. I'm focused on my list, keeping the children contained, and getting out of there. "Giving" doesn't come to mind. But filling up that bag at home? That was easy. And it felt good.

Save more. Give more.

What do you think?

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One Response to “My Pantry Overfloweth”

  1. I'm right there with you! I love it. Ironically, last year when I was out of work, we gave more to food drives and charity and it was all because of my couponing. We definitely saved more and gave more! Great feeling, all the way around.