Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Extreme Couponing

Move over Real Housewives of Everywhere, I have a new series linked obsession. Actually it's a bit sad, but I am hooked.

Extreme Couponing. 

It's pathetic and embarrassing and I love it.

If you have not yet had the pleasure, the show basically follows an "Extreme Couponer" as they prepare and execute a massive shopping trip armed with a folder or box crate full of neatly clipped and itemised coupons. The aim of the game is to get as much as they can, for very little out of pocket expense. It doesn't really go into how these people are able to amass such large numbers of coupons, although some have been known to climb into recyling waste bins...

You also get to see their personal "stock pile" of free or heavily discounted items lining the walls of their homes. Paper towel seems to be a popular item, as is deodarant, sports drinks, tooth paste and cereal. Obviously items with a long shelf life are the most desirable.

But its the suspense of the checkout that really has me sucked in, the whole process is rife with potential hiccups.

Did they count out exactly 700 toothbrushes?

Will all of their coupons scan correctly?

Is the checkout chick going to lose her shit at having to spend 3 hours serving 1 anxious, hyperventilating tightarse?

Edge of your seat stuff I tell you.

I find myself cheering for the reductions and marvelling at the savings. 

How on earth do they do it? 

How did they just buy $1,000 worth of groceries and the store owes them money?

What the hell are they going to do with 94 packets of croutons? 

Most importantly, why don't we have couponing in Australia? 

I think I would be good at it. I have couponing nerd written all over me. Nothing gets me more excited than a spreadsheet of promised savings. I have even put one together to track our spending before. Not to mention the meticulously labeled and ordered folders that you need to keep it all organised.

Yep, I was made for couponing. Get me in there!

As much as the show amuses me, if I let myself think about it too long it actually is a little bit depressing. I think it's great that families are able to recover from financial hardship using this system, but I can't help but worry about the sheer compulsive consumerism of a 16 year old boy proudly displaying his shelf of feminine hygiene products that he just had to get because they were free. The same kid that complained he had to go 5 weeks without couponing because his inconsiderate bastard family took him to Mexico for a holiday. 

And I don't care how good the sale was, I cannot see a reason why I would need a 50 year supply of the same crappy roll on deodarant sitting in my garage. Variety is the spice of life people!

Still, it kinda leaves our 2 Helga loaves for $6 for dead doesn't it?

Being a Mum is so Glamourous

For the last month or so Casa De Bond has been plagued by a steady stream of Preschooler illnesses. Amongst the normal winter sniffles we have also dealt with Hand, Foot and Mouth disease, the flu, conjunctivitis and worms. 

Fun times.

The actual illnesses have not been that severe, but due to their highly contagious nature, it has been a terrible inconvenience to our social life. Not to mention my sanity as I have had to essentially quarantine myself with 2 small children whilst we wait for the latest bout of cooties to pass.

The constant trips to the chemist are a bit painful too.

Case in point, today. 

Skye's Preschool had informed us of a case of worms at the centre and although Skye was showing no sign of being affected, I thought that it would be best to be prepared so we called into the chemist on the way home. I had a few other things I needed to grab while I was there, but thought it would be simple enough to breeze in, pick up my supplies and be on my merry way. However having never had to deal with this particular issue before, it was necessary to ask the staff for some guidance, especially if we needed to treat myself or Hayden.

Not being able to even find the worms section, I gave the assistant on the counter a run down of what we needed and she went over the back to ask the pharmacist. 

The young, fit and not entirely unattractive pharmacist. Which in itself should be illegal. 

He, of course, needed more information, but rather than come out from behind the dispensary to discuss our options, he decided to enquire, in a rather loud voice, if I also required treatment. 

Thanks for that.

I'm fairly certain I squirmed in a way that would suggest I did in fact need a dose before managing to blurt out err, no, it's just in case at this stage. PREVENTATIVE.

The need for shouting was not helped by Skye standing at my side repeatedly asking for jelly beans. 

Because apparently that is the only reason anyone goes into a chemist. 

Flustered by entirely too much conversation about such a revolting topic and the incessant sound of my darling daughter in full pester power mode, I finally turned my attention back to her only to discover she had been busily throwing the packet of super overnight maxi pads I had placed on the counter up in the air to help emphasise her demands. 


Motherhood is so glamourous.

Have you ever had a mortifying moment in the chemist? 

Do you think there are professions where attractiveness can be inappropriate?
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