Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Coupon Fairies and other RAK's

Couponing.  For some that word is exciting! For others that word screams more work! Either way, the philosophy of coupons (saving money!) is universally appreciated, I think. Whether your wallet is fat or thin, saving money is somehow rewarding. We love sales, we love clearance, we love bargains… and coupons is the paper form of all that!

$25.99 diapers for $21.99?!?! Wha-What! SCORE! By casually slipping a small little piece of paper to the cashier I just won myself a free skinny hazelnut latte on the way home! Ok, not free, but if I saved money at one store, I can spend it elsewhere, and somehow that translates to meaning free latte for me!

The thing is, I very rarely get that free latte because I forget to take coupons to the store 99.99% of the time. The truth is, I may not actually clip coupons at all, let alone remember to tuck them in my purse to take to the store, but I think about it! I think about, darn it!

The point is, some people do clip coupons. They clip them, organize them, put them in their purse, and have them at the store – therefore saving money and earning free lattes – or, maybe being more responsible, they add money to their child's college fund. Either way, it's awesome to save money.

AhhhWE-SOoooME! By the way, that's typed in a way that should be read in a singing voice.
But did you know that some people clip coupons, organize them, put them in their purse, and have them at the store BUT DO NOT USE THEM? It’s TRUE!

They leave them at the store on the item they are good for so the next person that comes along to buy that cake mix, shaving cream, dog food, or baby formula will have a SURPRISE savings. How fun is that?! Coupon Fairies!

That’s what these couponers are called you know… Coupon Fairies. I like it. I visualize them in cute little tutu’s, sparkly wings and they are tiptoeing through stores, giggling. That might not be accurate. They probably don’t tiptoe. I digress.

Anyways. I recently had a comment on the Mom About The Town facebook page from a local gal (HI MARY!!). She was shopping at a local store when she found a coupon on the exact thing she was shopping for! WE, RIGHT HERE IN SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY, HAVE A COUPON FAIRY! Maybe even more than one! I personally think that is pretty cool. Kind people rock!

All that to say, I like good news, I like nice people, I think they should be celebrated! This was good news and I wanted to share it. Celebrate it. I suspect that in my future I might actually become a Coupon Fairy, at least once in a while. I would be a good candidate because that .01% of the time that I do clip coupons and take them to the store, it is often for an item I do not need. I'm not organized, but I can be kind.

Tips on Coupon Fairy-ing:
  • TAKE TAPE – It has been reported over and over that if you just leave a coupon on a shelf, it eventually flutters to the floor and ends up in a sweep pile in the stock room. Tape coupons to the product.
  • TAKE TAPE (worth repeating) – If you put a coupon in the freezer it has been reported to fall down into the freezer drain creating a clog and a broken freezer case. The thought of ice cream going bad gives me nightmares. Tape coupons to the product.
  • CHECK EXPIRATION OF COUPON – Clearly the intentions are good, but if you tape an already expired coupon to a box of cake batter, et el., that could be considered a tease. 
  • CHECK TO SEE YOU ARE IN THE RIGHT STORE for your store coupons - see explanation for above. Tease.

Speaking of leaving things for others…  my daughter and I fondly remember one of our Random Acts of Kindness attempts. Attempt is a clue for how this will end. This one time at band camp a friend of ours hand-made “little monster” creatures (cutest ever) and gave them to us to tie to chairs in the Stanford Hospital waiting rooms. You know, surprise people with toys for their kids, great, right? Random Acts of Kindness! I was down for it!

However, in hindsight I can see why the security guard was so upset: "Security 1 to Base, Over. Strange woman walking away after tying unknown object to chair in waiting room. Over" – not good. She and I were escorted out of the hospital that night. Thankfully not in handcuffs and without any written reports. Point being – RAK’s are awesome, but sometimes it’s good to think them ALL the way through.

Psst, check out The Secret Toy Society to learn more about randomly leaving awesome home made toys.

What has been your experience providing or receiving a Random Act of Kindness?

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