So last week, I shared how our financial makeover began. I left off by sharing that I had to begin a quest on how I could save money on our weekly grocery bill.
I had always used coupons. I would save $0.25 here and $2.00 there. So, I wasn’t a true “couponer.” I knew that I could do better. I knew I could save more – but how? I couldn’t find the deals nor the coupons I needed to really help out my family. I really wanted to learn how to shave even more off our grocery bill so that we could eliminate our debt much more quickly. After all, I had heard amazing stories of people paying little to nothing for groceries – why couldn’t I?
So, one night, I sat down and started to do a little “googling.” What did I search for? Well, honestly, “saving money.” That brought up a plethora of websites. So, I started reading. There was so much out there that I felt very overwhelmed. So, I thought I would try instead to “google” coupons. I really thought that was my best alternative for saving money.
My search led me to an on-line site with lots of great information. I found coupons that I could print, which definitely helped. More importantly however, I learned about CVS, Walgreens and how to really save money on my weekly shopping trips. And when I say really save – I mean how to get stuff for FREE! My eyes were opened to the world of amazing deals, freebies and savings.
So, I followed along (and yes – even I was a little lost at first). I noticed a great deal at CVS on batteries. I believe I ended up spending a total of $9.00 net out of my pocket for 4 – 6 large packages of batteries. I was so proud of myself! I had to tell everyone I knew how I did it.
At that time, I belonged to an on-line forum of moms. I told them all what I had done. A lot of them tried it and were amazed at what they were able to do it too! They were so grateful for me helping them save money that they asked me to share another deal.
So, feeling ultra confident, I sat down with the weekly ad for CVS and put together my own scenarios. I tried them – saved big – and passed my deals along to everyone yet again. What was great was that I was not only purchasing items we needed, but also saving us money in the process — money that I was able to immediately turn around and apply to our debt.
Of course, I made my fair share of mistakes along the way, but I took them as an opportunity to learn and also what not to do the next time I shopped! Withthat and my growing knowledge of drug stores, I knew that there was more I could do. So, I decided I would tackle my local grocery store. After all, that is where I spent the majority of my grocery budget.
While searching I realized I was not finding anyone who could really help me with saving money right where I lived – Kansas City. That led me to have to do even more work to reduce our grocery budget – my own weekly matchups. As a direct result of learning how to do these money saving deals and grocery matchups, our family was able to save over $5,000 in our first year. This was money that helped us drastically reduce our family’s debt.
So, as we worked on slashing our debt with the money saving deals I had found, I also continued to share my savings adventureswith my on-line community of friends. Of course, the more I shared, they more they craved. So much so, that a few fof them mentioned that I really should start a money saving blog. I laughed at the thought. I told them they were nuts and there were already so many blogs out there, what good would mine do? Wouldn’t it just be the same as everyone else? Not only that, I had 3 kids and no extra time to devote to anything else.
After much discussion, they finally convinced me that I all I had to do is try. After all, the worst thing that could happen is that it didn’t work and I could just stop. They reminded me of the debt we had slashed as a result of what I head learned to do and how amazing it could be to share that with other families.
So, on January 10, 2009, I sat down at my computer and my fingers began to type……..Kansas City Penny Pinchin’ Mama. And in that moment, my site was born. Little did I know how much it would change my life, and that of my family.……….
(come back again next week to learn what transpired over the next year and how we got out of debt more quickly than we anticipated)