Extreme Couponing with Kids
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Extreme Couponing with Kids

Posted on Tuesday, April 26th, 2011 at 6:12 am
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Most of us need to stretch our grocery food budget, but when you have kids this need to save can become even more urgent. The grocery bill just doesn’t go as far these days, especially when there are more family members to feed. Plus, if you decide to stay home with your kids, using coupons can be a way to contribute financially to the household without working outside the home. Either way, it is extreme couponing to the rescue.

Can I Do Extreme Couponing with Kids?

Super shoppers can definitely practice extreme couponing while raising their kids. The key is to start slowly and work up to whatever time and effort that works for you and your family. Don’t compare your weekly stockpile hauls to others and don’t expect to be able to get completely up and running right away. Even extreme couponers who don’t have kids at home can take years to get to the point of saving thousands of dollars on groceries.

Plus, you don’t want to spend hours and hours a day away from your family in order to get the deals.
Incorporate the following shopping tips for extreme couponing with kids.

Get the Kids Involved in Extreme Couponing

Your kids can learn valuable money saving skills, as well as math skills such as addition and subtraction while clipping coupons. Even little ones can practice their scissor skills with coupons (start them with some extra insert pages that you don’t need). There is also sorting, writing practice and more. Plus kids can feel important and get a sense of accomplishment.

Older kids can be paid a small “fee” to cut coupons for you, or calculate how the savings will add up to a family goal, such as a vacation to Disney World or a new big screen television.

If you donate some of your haul, explain to your kids where the products are going, thanks to grocery coupons, and how they will be able to help others in need.

How to Do Extreme Couponing Shopping

While running to do a couple of small drugstore deals with kids might not be too bad, when it comes to the big extreme couponing trips, you might want to leave the kids at home, at least when it comes to any children under ten.

Young children can be a distraction in the store that can really affect the shopping results. There may be times when you have to recalculate deals on the spot, talk to the manager or visit the customer service desk. Plus doing a major shopping trip can take hours. Try time to time your big shopping deals day to a time when you can go without the kids.

How can you shop alone, you ask? If you don’t have a spouse or family member to watch the kids, offer to trade baby sitting with another extreme couponer or split a portion of your free products with a friend in exchange for child-free shopping.

If this isn’t an option and you will have the children with you, try to break up your shopping into smaller more frequent trips. Assign the kids different roles such as finding the yogurt, pushing a cart, counting out items or checking things off of the list. Hand your child a coupon that has a picture of the product and ask him or her to find it on the shelf. Some of these “games” can go a long way to helping you accomplish your extreme couponing goals while shopping with kids.

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.