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guilt for NOT couponing?

December 19th, 2005 at 01:44 pm

I was a bit sad today, reading the forums on buying generic versus couponing. It really seemed like one member felt they had to defend themselves for not taking the time or needing to coupon.

Couponing, shopping sales, looking for "deals" takes a great deal of time, and it's not necessary for everyone. It's not a help to everyone.

For me, I've gone in stages. Grew up with coupons and sales and hunting down bargains at several different stores each week. After I married and went on to grad school, one, I had no TIME for couponing or looking at ads or even planning ahead, and no storage space. We lived on $500 a month, and graciously accepted piles of groceries each month from MIL, whom I adore. We worked round the clock, and rarely cooked fancy meals. Clothing consisted of a pair of jeans, and scrubs and a lab coat provided by the university, cast off furniture from our families, and lots of group pizza. Still, we managed to save!

Post-doc paid a bit more, and the professorship more. Still, we were busy, and shopping usually meant a run down to Pac n Save or PriceClub.

Getting into the "real world", having to buy the first sets of business clothes and entertain, etc., was a different ball game. I did start to coupon and check the ads, MD built a huge pantry in the garage. Still, I traveled 50%, and the rules were a bit different. I remember arriving home from a rush tour of PacRim, dropping by work in a dirty Australia tshirt and jeans straight off the plane, and meeting with the president of N-Cubed. California, different standards. But we were spending more, shirts and ties, "start up costs" for our new jobs, and we did become more and more conscious of making the deals. At one point we were a bi-coastal couple, and when MD flew home from the east coast for weekends, I had the list and coupons all set out, and we'd shop/save as our destress together.

Moving East and becoming VPs for a Fortune 500 company, our salaries rose, our expenses rose, and we worked 20 hour days. Shopping was a grab it and go, but we stuck with what we needed for the week and not staples that would expire before I actually had time to cook.

All along the way, we found ways to SAVE. That is what all of these different methods come down to. The details of what works, or when, depends on everyone's circumstances. Once we retired, I didn't immediately start shopping ads or couponing, until this October when we hit a snag and we needed to cut finances for a few months. But I have the time, and I enjoy saving money, in whatever form it takes! I HATE shopping, but I love saving money.

I hope no one feels pressed to conform to something that just stresses them out, when they can accomplish their goals in other ways. I do whatever works for ME at the TIME, and try to just let the rest go.

2 Responses to “guilt for NOT couponing?”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I have to say, I completely agree. Some people coupon with a vengence, but others might do it on occassion or just try and buy generic/bulk/best deal. Personally I don't coupon because everytime I look for coupons (we get the paper at my work, so I always check out the Sunday paper for deals) I never seem to find coupons for things I would buy anyway. Sometimes, but not often. I figure, eh, I'll save money buy only buying what we can eat and generic and not worry about. Smile Well put.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    My attitude is that if you have reasonable goals, and are saving enough money and you're *not* getting the money by robbing banks, who cares how you are doing it.... And no store in Seattle has double or triple coupons or weird coupon deals so its not worth the time if you haven't developed the habit for it. I much prefer the loss leader, the price book, and a store coupon once in awhile.

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