New Year’s Resolutions

Ordinarily I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions.  Most of us fail to keep them, intentionally.  We just cancel them.  Maybe we start with our sights set too high, or maybe we just lack the ability to commit.  Well, I have resolved to do two things this year.  First is to pick up every bit of money I find on the ground.  The second is to chart, to the penny, the amount of money our family saves through couponing and other means.

When out and about I never pass over ‘silver’ change.  I always stop for nickels, dimes, and quarters but not always pennies.  This year I will not pass over a single coin.  While at work I have found some real cash — ten dollars, and once twenty.  Due to the many drug transactions people in their haste drop cash and I am the benefactor.  This year I will save it all.

My wife and I are what you might call practical extreme couponers.  We don’t get 100 toothpaste coupons and clear out a store.  But we do coupon everything.  We save at least 50% on our groceries, and even more when it comes to personal needs like toiletries and clothing.  This year, our grocery savings alone was more than $4,000.

This year we will catalog every receipt, promotion, and free-bee.  I’m excited to see exactly how much money we save throughout the year.

What do you think about New Year’s resolutions?  Do you have any; will you follow through?

Comments

  1. We’ve always saved every penny found on the ground, let alone the other coins and even an occasional bill. We’ve always had a jar called “Found Fund,” and when our two kids lived with us it grew more than it does now because they would be out an about on their own, making it FOUR people collecting. Anyway, the most we’ve ever acquired in a year was about $20. The “Found Fund” was/is always placed in a Salvation Army bucket.

  2. My New Years resolutions are to quit smoking, lose a little weight, and finish my degree. The first one is going pretty smooth right now with the help of an e-Cigarette. Hopefully the others go just as smooth.

    Glenn,

    Most I ever found was a $100 bill a long time ago when I was a little kid. My mom and I were roaming around the mall and I pointed it out to my mother, who quickly snatched it up. She looked around to see if anyone appeared to be rifling through their pockets looking for it, but saw nothing. She felt bad because it was Christmas time, but honestly, what was she going to do? Put it in Lost & Found? Ha.

  3. We once found a $20 bill in a grocery store parking lot back when our kids were young. So we told the manager that if anyone came in looking for lost money, to have them call us. We didn’t tell him the amount, so that the person who lost it would have to know. We weren’t home but about an hour when we got a call from a young lady who said she had a $20 in her jacket pocket and it must have fallen out when she got out her keys to enter her car. She drove to our house and was very grateful to get her money back – and you could tell she was not one who had money to throw away! It was a good lesson to teach our kids.

    Turn about, my wife dropped a $10 bill in a store a few years ago, discovering it being missing when she got hope – similar story, it was in her pocket with her keys. She called the store and asked if anyone turned it in, and sure enough, someone had!

  4. Yeah. I don’t think she did that, but I don’t know. I was little. It’s a good idea, though. It’s honest.

    Other than that, I spotted a $5 on the sidewalk and a $20 bill in a casino parking lot. And that was years ago now. I haven’t found anything but change since!

  5. Today, while picking my new girls up from visiting their mother, their mom introduced me to a new resident. This woman’s sister is an extreme couponer, and she showed me a photo of a recent grocery bill; just the bottom of it, as the whole thing was too long. The savings was over $10,000. !!!! (Cdn $) The total before tax was about $280. The taxable items added more than $400, so she got close to $11,000 in groceries for a bit over $700! Her final bill was actually higher than my budget for 2 weeks of groceries for the 6 of us. :-/ I can’t even imagine what she bought, or the sorts of quantities she had to buy in. Talk about dedicated!!

    I can’t help but wonder what it was like being the cashier or bagger for this woman’s purchases! LOL

    I rarely use coupons – if I do, they tend to be the buy-one-get-one-free types, and with the grocery store I got to, I don’t even need to have the coupon to do it. They always have that month’s BIGO coupons at each till (I used to work there as a cashier). These tend to be for things like meats, so the savings can be significant.

    My problem with most coupons is that they tend to be for things I never buy. For example, I always see coupons for salad dressings, but the brands that put them out are full of soy products, and I have 3 family members who are soy intolerant. Or I’ll see them for brand name laundry soap, but I can get laundry soap for cheaper buying the house brand in the warehouse store (I buy laundry soap twice a year. *L*), and it cleans just as well. Other things, I just don’t buy. I’ve tried going through the fliers, but just can’t find enough items my family uses to justify it. Not really saving money if I’m spending on things I don’t, or can’t, use.

    As for resolutions, I don’t really do them. I have some goals, but they’re not tied to New Years or anything like that. Things are pretty crazy right now, so a lot of my previous goals got shelved. :-P Ah, well. Such is life.

  6. Good luck on the savings — a worthwhile goal

  7. I once found several hundred dollars (at least) all stacked neatly according to denominations, including the coins. It was in the cash register at the 7-11 and the guy behind the counter seemed to have found it first.

    Terrance—-quitting smoking is easy. I’ve done it hundreds of times. But the last time was I had a smoke (not counting dreams or illegal substances) was June 17, 2003 (though my wife thinks it was 2006 and she may very well be right). I didn’t want to quit. That is, I liked smoking and only “wanted” to quit because I knew it was the right move. Anyway, after trying hypnosis several times, patches, pills and needles in the face (ouch), I simply decided that I would stop regardless of how bad it might suck. Which it did. I resolved to never smoke again no matter what. Screw the addiction and the cravings and God help the dog. One thing that made it easier was that we went out of town for a week and the change of scenery helped, I think. But there was no being “ready” for me. There was no “right time” since the moment right before my first cigarette ever was the right time. I just stopped and let it suck. Eventually, and quite soon, the physical cravings dissipated and the dog healed. What my wife finds most remarkable is that my bowling league started just a short time later and at that time, those idiot laws against smoking in bowling alleys hadn’t been instituted. I’d go through three packs on the day of bowling night. It’s really just a “just do it” kinda thing after all and I’m sure you’re more than capable of succeeding. It was easier than giving up cussin’, which I still haven’t mastered. Of course the crack cocaine really helped, but….

  8. As to New Year’s resolutions in general, I usually use the New Year to re-commit to resolutions I’ve already made. I can resolve to do or stop doing anything at any time, but should life get in the way, the New Year makes me think about those resolutions more and I increase my focus. This past year has been especially goofy for me, and within the last month and a half, my oldest miscarried, my mother passed and my second oldest is now in the hospital fighting off a condition that almost killed her the year she got married. Her twins are only a few months old. So I haven’t been thinking as much of myself and what I need to be getting done. That is until the New Year got so close. Now I’m considering just which of my goals are most deserving of my focus.

  9. Marshal,

    I’m truly sorry for your troubles. As a parent, I don’t even want to imagine going through something so awful. I pray everything works out for the best.

  10. Oops… sorry for the type on your name, Marshal!

  11. typO. typO.

    I need to go to bed. :-P

  12. No, friends. I apologize to you for whining. I only meant to describe where resolutions take priority and why. My oldest will try again, my mother was ready and my second oldest was aware enough to get treatment early. My wife’s a basket case, but she’ll survive as well. I resolve to see it so.

    • Hey, it’s not whining to tell people what’s going on, and that’s all you did.

      While you’re busy taking care of the people around you, don’t forget to take a moment or two for yourself as well. It’s far too easy to forget that, and the consequences can sneak up rather suddenly. Speaking from experience, here. :-/

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