The Evolution of a Coupon Clipper

Have you ever seen the TV show where people have enormous amounts of coupons and end up getting money back from the cashier when they are finished with their grocery shopping?  This show baffles me.  Friends and family see this and wonder why we actually have to pay for our groceries.  I tell them that show is not really real, even though I really do not know if it is really real or not.  I made up this explanation to defend my evolving lack of talent when it comes to coupon clipping.

When I first began clipping coupons, I looked through the Sunday newspapers.  I used to make a pile of coupon booklets and diligently go through each page and cut out all the coupons I thought I would need.  I did this even if it wasn’t right before I was going to the grocery store.  Imagine how organized I was.  I then arranged those coupons in my coupon box.  Some people have their coupons organized in categories, like produce, dairy, cereal, etc.  Okay, I used to do that a very long time ago, because I had little dividers, but I don’t anymore because the dividers ended up getting lost on purpose somewhere.

I recently noticed that since I have been clipping coupons for a while now, that I have changed my clipping routine.  Sunday is no longer designated coupon clipping day.  Any day I go to the store, I might dig through accumulating piles of newspapers just before I head out.  I grab the coupon booklets and rapidly page through them to see if there are any worthwhile coupons.  I clip some or else I just leave the booklets in the pile for me to look through next time, hopefully before their expiration dates. 

Sometimes I find coupons that are so valuable that they end up being admitted to the coupon box for future use.  Nowadays my coupons are categorized in reverse chronological order.  New coupons to be admitted to the box get to have their place in the very front.  Even as I am trying to search for new coupons, I do look through the precious box in case I find a treasure there.

Recently I have noticed that coupons are mostly for worthless stuff.  I feel lucky if I find a coupon that I can actually use.  The fact that I am not having much luck finding coupons should discourage me from even looking.  But it hasn’t.  If I did not search for coupons, I would wonder if I was missing my chance of finding a really good deal.  Yet, deep down I wonder if trying to find coupons is a waste of time.  Is the actual 25 cent coupon really worth the time spent trying to find it?  Plus all this accumulation of coupons makes it necessary to take on the task of tossing away the expired ones.

Honestly, the thing that makes me a coupon clipper is seeing how much money was saved after each trip.  I instantly look at the bottom of the receipt.  I need to know how much money was saved and what the percentage of savings was.  Even though my coupon clipping talent has not evolved to the Internet or even gotten any better over the years, putting these helpful facts on the bottom of the receipt will forever keep me clipping.

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6 thoughts on “The Evolution of a Coupon Clipper

  1. I try to clip coupons. I really do. I just don’t always find the time to dedicate much effort. I do most of my shopping at Cub and I feel good if I find some I can use in the weekly flyer, but sometimes I just show up at the store sans any coupons whatsoever.

    I always wonder about those extreme-couponers. I don’t think we could even attempt it here. All of the coupons I see put a limit on the number of items you can purchase on special or the store limits the number of specials that you can take advantage of.

    Heck, I just feel good if I’ve done some grocery shopping and can put a couple of decent meals on the table in any given week. Maybe when I retire, I’ll have time for coupons.

    • Cub is great, and has a lot of good coupons. I hate it though when they send me a two $5 coupons in the mail, and I have to hang onto one for weeks before it’s any good. But, hang onto it, I do! Sometimes I try to sneak it through, but they always catch me:(

  2. My son in law clips coupons, he has a notebook that he has them all filed in. I find that most of the stuff I eat don’t have coupons for them so therefore I don’t bother. But I applaud those who do.

  3. Have you seen those coupon shows!?! They have ROOMS to organize their coupons. Our little boxes and piles are no match for them. I picture these woman lurking through Wawas stealing the coupon sections out of the Sunday papers. Heaven knows MY paper has been missing the coupon section on more than one occasion.
    I think I’m going to avoid being on an episode of “Hoarders” by throwing out my piles of papers and clippings NOW.
    Whew, that felt good.

  4. I am also a coupon clipper, and like you I’ve found many of them to be useless to me. I do have a large backstock of Tide detergent and toothpaste – but with just two of us in the house, and junk food on the banned items list, there’s much less that I can buy with coupons.

    Some great coupons that I covet include spices, baking supplies, tea, coffee, cleaning products.

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