Saturday, April 9, 2011

Extreme Couponing

Hi Friends,
TLC has a series of shows called Extreme Couponing.  I have mixed emotions about this.  I use coupons that get sent to me in the mail or in my Sunday paper.  I even ask friends from time to time for coupons if there are coupons that I know I can really benefit from that they are not using.  I even do what the extreme couponers do which is matching coupons with the sale ads.  I respect people using coupons and digging themselves out of debt as well as respecting people giving their surplus to the food bank and other charities.

Here is where I get hesitant because I know what I'm about to say may offend some, but I think it needs to be said.  These people who do extreme couponing say they are not hoarders, they just have a stock supply for emergencies.  I even get that.  But how much is enough?  Do they not trust in the Lord to provide?  What about the sin of gluttony? or greed?

My issue is that these extreme couponers clear off the shelf so there is none left for other shoppers.  Some people live out in the country and drive for an hour or more to do their shopping and then when they can't get everything on their list because it has been cleared out is not right.  I know shoppers can get rainchecks but still.

So what is enough food for a stockpile in our homes?  6 months?  1 year?  2 years?  What about the lady in the show who had 2 large rooms, I think one was an entire attic, full of food and paper products and was then moving her husband out of his office just so she could store more food?  Is that giving our husbands the respect they deserve?  I mean, this is to the point of idolatry with these coupons. 

My personal thoughts about how much is enough is this.  If you want to have a year of food, health and beauty, and paper products stockpiled, then how many times are you going to make spaghetti in a year?  For my family I make it about once a month.  That means we would only need 12 jars of sauce in our stockpile at any given time.  I understand the cycles of coupons and sales.  If you watch closely, certain foods go on sale every 4 weeks.  Other foods it's every 6, 8 or 12 weeks.  Coupons also appear on cycles.  By understanding this, there is no need to make such insanely large, clear off the shelf purchases. 

I have to wonder how much food these people throw away because it goes bad.  The couple with all those potato chips...Oil goes rancid and tastes terrible.  Have you ever eaten potato chips that have expired?  They can taste really bad because the oil they've been fried in has gone south.  I wonder if any of them have had mice get into their food supply.

Finally...You know throughout life, laws and rules get changed for the stricter because of just one person.  It only takes one person to spoil it for all of us.  I'm thinking that couponing and sales may change for all of us because of the actions of a few.

I've ranted long enough about this.  Please friends, trust in the Lord to provide.  Give Him thanks for your bounty.  Listen to your heart regarding greed and glutony and use common courtesy to your fellow shoppers who may want the same products as you. 

What do you think about this?  Have you seen the shows?  Am I wrong in my thinking?  Do you use coupons?  I'd love to hear from you and your thoughts.

Happy Homemaking and Blessings,


Michelle Saunderson said...

I coupon also, but I like to make short lists so that I don't take too much time at the register and so that I don't take too much of any item. I think the people on the show are just too extreme and make everyone thing couponers are freaks.

Ashraf said...

so nice
thank you for a nice doing...

WhySayWhat said...

The "couponers" in that show (that I actually watch from time to time) are most definitly hoarders! If you watch enough TLC, you notice a trend...hoarders do not think they are hoarders! I can applaud the woman who spent 9 hours in the check out line (I feel sorry for the cashier though) for spending $50ish rather than $1000+, but she is a form of "nutball" IMO. No one needs that much "stuff" an emergency, I won;t be worrying about fabric softener! I love my coupons...I even print some off line and have 2 different programs installed tohat allow me to print them! But, I throw away a lot of coupons too...I save them because it's an item we use or I'd like to try. In the end though, they expire if I don't see an opprotunity to use them. Saves us even more $ that way! As for clearing the shelves...I really think the stores should be able to put a limit on the quantity of any given item you can buy at any given time, who really needs 100+ boxes of dry pasta anyway? A food bank? They can call ahead and special order it!

Lindsey Stipes said...

I watched that show and blogged about it as well. Now following your blog!! Love the title of your blog-cute!!

Chasity @ The Intertwined Life said...

I totally agree with you. I do use coupons (yes, I even have a coupon binder), I do match-ups too ... but come on ... 77 bottles of mustard? And nothing donated to a food bank! Also, I never ask a cashier to do more than one transaction for me - I don't know of any store (that wasn't being featured in a show) that would let anyone do that many at one time. Plus the other blogs I've read, have shown that there was some coupon fraud going on there too - that kind of behavior gives all of us normal couponers a bad name!

Christina Simon said...

Visiting you from SITS. I've seen extreme coupon show and it seems like they cross the line to obsession. One of them bought 72 bottles of mustard, another one had enough of one product to last years. I did like the guy who donates food to his local food bank.

HeartBabyHome said...

I hadn't heard of this coupling show. Sounds crazy! I'm not big on coupons...mostly because it's a pain and the coupon is hardly ever for something I would've bought anyway....
Nice to hear there is a line where frugal crosses over into insanity.

Alathia said...

Just found your blog. Thank you for putting into words, what I was unable to express. I too thought it crossed the line into hoarding, but never considered it an idol, but I see how it can be. I saw 2 episodes of this show and was intrigued and disgusted at the same time.


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