Welcome to Southern Savers, where finding deals and steals is simple and rewarding!

See I told you, this would help!

Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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Tonight The Learning Channel (TLC) aired a show called Extreme Couponing.  I have previously been approached to do such a show and have refused for a variety of reasons that to me have only been strengthened by this show.  I know a lot behind reality shows is hype and misdirection, but turning people off from easy ways of saving money is something that makes me cringe.  In today’s economy we need to be showing people how easy this is, and not overwhelm them or make them think we are insane!!

If you have followed Southern Savers for any length of time, you know that I put a high priority on making this a lifestyle change not a crazy hobby.  Over the last few years, many of you have sent e-mails overwhelmed by the couponing world and the potential it has to take over one’s life.  My response has and will always be the same: start small, and remember why you are couponing:

  • There is no need to hit every store in town.  Everything will come on sale at each store, so pick one to frequent for deals.
  • Pick one store and follow that list, buy whats on sale and slowly build your stockpile. As you get more comfortable then pick one grocery store and one drugstore to follow on a regular basis.

In regards to the show, for many that watched this will be their first taste of couponing and will only cement their fears: that couponing is an overindulgent, irresponsible, and rude practice.

Like many things, couponing is not inherently good or bad.  But we can use it in ways that are good or bad.  Let me contrast a few of the things folks mentioned tonight:

  1. Couponing Does Not Take Money From The Store.
    I’m not going to go into all the technicalities (for that please read my post on the redemption system behind coupons), but know that the store’s are reimbursed by the Manufacturers.  Remember that the Manufacturers budgeted for coupons, made them, and put them into the grocery shopping world.
  2. Not Everyone Who Coupons Is Crazy or Obsessed.
    Thousands of people visit this site everyday and none of them have ever reported doing anything like purchasing 1,100 boxes of cereal.  Maybe three or four at time but that’s about it… (If you do buy thousands then please don’t tell me).
  3. Couponing Does Not Need Take Too Much Time.
    This takes as much time as you want it to.  It is work, admittedly, but you can spend one hour a week organizing your Sunday inserts or a couple hours a week checking sites and printing coupons from the web.  But saving money doesn’t require hundreds of hours.  Read up on how to be frugal with your time.
  4. We Do Need To Stock Up To Save — But Only For 6 Weeks.
    Sales run in cycles, that’s part of the concept that helps us save so much.  This means you need to buy a few extra but it also means they will come on sale again.  Six weeks worth for most families is maybe 2-3 of each item.  If you feel a huge desire to buy more than you need then donate them to food banks, church pantries etc.  (If you do buy for charities always ask your store to special order for you before clearing shelves.)

In the end, I am quite certain that this show will revive intense discussions concerning couponing, and I want all of you to be able to discuss couponing with intelligence and grace.  If anything, lets show the world that it is possible to coupon in moderation and to coupon with contentment.

Further Reading:
Getting Started Easily with Coupons
Extreme Couponing 101: Burnout
How To Reduce Your Time Spent Couponing

Extreme Couponing 101: Coupon Redemption

(one note:  we are truly frugal folks and don’t have cable so I watched online clips and got info from a lot of your emails and friends.  If you have any other insight or thoughts from the show feel free to share)

    • Jenny – YEA!!! This post rocks! Unfortunately, you are right on all fronts, this show will solidify the fear of first timers- that they could never do this – They could never create spread sheets, organizational systems etc, but we know it’s possible, and manageable when there’s a small goal.
      Starting small is SO true! The excellent part of the show it that it does show the power of coupons. It shows just how much you can save, but hopefully it gives people a glimmer of hope, instead of frustration.


    • Kkr

      what time is it on?

      • grace

        today at 8 I think

      • Karensweeney2002

        It replays tonight at midnight, central time.

    • Desirae5613

      I think the show was great! But people dont get that its called extreme for a purpose. TLC wanted them to go extreme and go out with a bang! Nathan the last guy on there is the owner of we use coupons . com. He is an amazing guy that has helped thousands and donated thousands. Of course TLC isnt going to talk about that side because they want the shock factor. Most of his items on his trip were preordered and 80% of it was donated to his local food shelter. The lady who went dumpster diving on there just posted a video of her donating 300lbs of food that she bought on that show to her local food bank. So of course this show is going to give negative feedback because they are not showing all the good sides & stories. They are wanting you to be in shock & awe to raise their ratings. I think its awesome what they do! If it wasn't for nathans website i would be the extreme couponer I am today! And i can say he doesn't shop like this on a daily basis! This was all for the show.

      • Anonymous

        good to know he is on weusecoupons. i like that site…and would have never known. I think he was a lil extreme but donating and helping out that much…that cannnot go unseen:)

      • Mrsheather

        I agree 100% with this comment. I was going to post the same thoughts, but you took the words right out of my mouth. Nathan has an amazing heart to help his family and his community! I think that it is amazing that the people on “Extreme Couponing” have found such creative ways of impacting the lives of the people around them.

    • becky

      I agree with you…WHO buys 40 deoderants at one time?

    • Madisonjewels1

      I'm a couponer myself and I watched the show and was shocked at how some ppl fill the need to keep so much .My bigest thrill of couponing is to be able to share or donate with others and also teach others how to save .

    • Tnstamper

      That first lady has a real problem and is a hoarder, not a couponer. A couple of them do it to an extreme but much more sensible, or to donate. You don't need 50 bottles of something that will expire before you can use it. I try to teach people to do it for their own families and maybe donate a little. Then they aren't so overwhelmed. Ones like this make it hard on everyone else.

    • I don't have cable either, was a waste of money for us. I have seen a couple of clips and my mother in law called and talked to me about a few things that happened in the show. I've been trying for a while now to encourage her to coupon just for the mere fact that we can all find ways and should find ways to be more frugal with our money. I think the show scared her more than encouraged her! I just told her to forget the 1100 boxes of cereal and maybe in the next month I would help her get a small grocery list together and we'd go to publix. I'm trying to encourage her to do the filing method and clip as she shops for the items. I do the binder method (lots of categories) but only because I have a disease called dysautonomia and my memory and focus is horrible 99% of the time. With the binder I have everything nice and neat in a system that works for me. Yes it takes me tons of time, but since I'm disabled I have tons of time…lol Anyway, I hope that as smart couponers we can help friends and family not to put too much stock into the show, and instead one on one work with them to show them the simplicity of it! Thanks for your time with SouthernSavers! It's been one of the many miracles in my life! God Bless!

    • Sherry

      I totally agree!!!

    • amywebb

      AMEN and Thanks Jenny!!!!!

    • Very nicely put! Thanks for all you do! I've been able to stay at home with my 15- month-old son, mainly thanks to couponing, and it has been wonderful!

    • Andrea @ SavingsLifestyle

      Good points, Jenny. I'm with you. The thing that upsets me the most about this is that the work that we've been doing for years is going down the drain because of these “extreme” behaviors. Focused or strategic couponing can save people thousands of dollars and it doesn't require the purchase of hundreds of boxes of cereal!

      I really hope people aren't turned off and not give this way to save a chance. I know first hand that it can be life changing to a family budget, yet not cross over to extreme.

    • Elizabeth

      Well said!

    • Tammi

      I watched the show and was kind of shocked that people went to that length. I mean how many bottles of salad dressing can a 2 person household use!! The fact that a 2 car garage is full of $50,000 worth of groceries for 2 people is not only obsene, but shows a total disreguard for others!! I coupon, but that was a lot like hoarding!!!!

      • Alicia

        Not to argue, but if I was going to let a camera crew shoot my stockpile and it was my “crowning glory,” I'd probably beef it up too as much as possible before the filming. I'm sure that someone with that much coupon knowledge will donate the salad dressing, etc. I don't even think you could drink it fast enough before it would expire. Ewww :)

      • Elizabeth

        I think the young lady who rearranged and told her husband things needed to look pretty was pushing it on hoarding and just a bit to attached to her “stuff”..

    • emilykayehall

      I also don't have cable so didn't get to see the show. Thanks for keeping this site up and for your advice. Mostly I just keep up with deals at Kroger (occasionally at Publix or Food Lion depending on what I need) and a little at CVS. It has saved me so much money, has taught me to let go of most brand loyalties and to really think through the things that I will actually use rather than going for impulse buys that will go bad. As a single person living in a small apartment, my “stockpile” is not big, but big enough that I was able to take a break (no paper purchase or true shopping since Thanksgiving) from couponing for almost a month (due to travel and such over the holidays) and still have plenty of food in my pantry. I will have to buy a few full price items tomorrow to make reasonable meals between now and Sunday's coupons but overall a great system without having to be extreme. Thanks!

      For those who are afraid – don't be! It really is do-able!

    • Good for you! I have also been approached by a production company putting together a program for Tru TV…..different subject matter, but same response. I appreciate the extra cash and goods your tips have provided for our family.

    • savings79

      everything in moderation. i appreciate everything you do for this site and check it daily! people will always be able to find the crazy extreme(s) in any situation. keep up the great work!

    • Heather_three2487

      I liked the show, although it was a little EXTREME! I have to admit I do order coupons (not in the hundreds or thousands) and I do go dumpster diving! With all the stuff I get I use for myself and my family, I donate some, and make gift baskets! I do have to say that couponing has changed my life and I think twice about paying full price for items!

      • Alicia

        I can get $5/50 coupons from a recycling bin next to the apartment complex mailboxes. Has never been icky in any way and has saved me so much money. I share the extras too (never sell them) and make some people very happy. I toss through that bin with a smile on my face and my head held high.

    • Krishna

      This show really was ridiculous! The only woman I thought was reasonable & not “crazy” in their buying habit was the woman from Philly. While she had 1 buggy & had a $232 bill down to $6, everyone else had 4-9 buggies…seriously?! The other people were extreme & obsessive. I felt like I was watching the show Hoarders. It also made me mad b/c I was seeing that these people were clearing the shelves & not being respectful of others who might be trying to buy the same items & coupon. There is no reason for these people to be going to the extreme they are. They are selfish, plain & simple. it is not a true reflection of people that coupon in my opinion.

    • Cschroppe

      You know what, I spend around an hour a week getting ready to shop, and I have been cutting my grocery bill in half most weeks. Sooooo, I don't really care what the people on TLC have to say about couponing. To them it's all about the shock value of whatever show they are airing…in the end, for them it's about making money. For me, it's about saving money! =)

    • Karen

      Well said! Learning to coupon has been such a blessing for our family. Thank you for all you do!

    • DRScott

      I agree with everything you said. A few friends turned me on to your site…and I admit, in the beginning, I spent more time than probably was necessary (excitement, curiosity, etc.), however, I see how about 30 minutes to an hour a week can save me about 40% on groceries on average…between sales and coupons. I've learned that its OK to stock up while the items are cheap…and I even used your site (and others I admit) to find deals on Christmas gifts, family entertainment and eating out. Why not let the manufacturer's out there who are willing pay for 40% of my groceries…!

    • Rochelle

      As I was watching the show I was truly disgusted. I have been a fan of Southern Savers for a while, but I just kept thinking “There are families and children starving in our country and these people get a thrill from filling their home with merchandise and products that could literally save another person's life.” Thank you Jenny for reminding us WHY we coupon and being a voice of reason.

    • Carrie_C

      Frankly loved the show – as a couponer I found myself getting giddy/nervous when they went to checkout. Was also able to recognize some of it as absurd (square footage too expensive to spend on 4 years worth of TP) or possibly problematic. However, I dumpster dive so I don't have to buy papers and I'll order some coupons in bulk on occasion to get 20 boxes of pasta (piccolini anyone?) during a sale, etc. But Jenny's right – you only need to build your stockpile to last 6-12 weeks to follow the sale rotation. When I first got into this a year ago, I couldn't believe it was true, so I “bought” so much dressing, toothpaste, crackers, etc thinking it'd be forever before they were actually free again. Hopefully most of us were able to sit back, laugh and say “AMEN!” on occasion :)

      • Heather_three2487

        LOL I found myself getting all excited too when they were in the check out line!! I know the nervous feeling that they have when their total is way up there before the coupons and when the coupons don't go through!!

    • Jessica_auner

      I only watched part of the show and the manat the end seems a bit obsessed, and I could tell a lot of it was staged for the cameras. It was sad in a way that made him look like a horder but it made me want to coupon in ernest again. :)

    • Alicia

      What was fun about the show for me was that the people that think I'm “extreme” now know that I'm not even close :) I suppose I could be if I kept everything that came in the door, but I give away and donate tons. I have a small shelving section for pasta, and when that's full, the rest goes out. The part I didn't love was that they didn't factor their coupon spending into the total savings. It still would have been amazing, but how far would that cash have gone if they'd just spent it on the sales with coupons on the things they really needed? At the same time, a food bank can't get a deal like that on cereal. This probably won't encourage people to coupon. Anyone who even thinks of that as a starting off point will burn out so quickly.

    • Tfarris3

      Jenny – I didn't catch the show and I think I'm glad I missed it after reading your post on it. I hate when people portray couponing in a negative way. The work you do on Southern Saves has changed our home and I know thousands of others..it's now our simple way of life..not written in stone…and I just want to say THANK YOU for all that you do!!

    • Jan Taunton

      Well said, Jenny. We aren't crazy, we are organized. Time management is just as important as money management. Couponing is a great way to save money! If you don't want to save money….don't! Make your list, gather your coupons and shop!

      First rule of thumb my mom taught me as a young shopper, “A bargain is not a bargain if you don't need it!” That rule has saved me lots of $'s and I still have lots of storage space!

    • Ruggierosherry

      For newbies watching for the first time this show was for the coupon crazed.It would embarrass me to say I was one of the extreme kind.I think it is so inconsiderate to clear a shelf like that!

    • Tammy

      Very well said, Jenny!

    • Jennifer

      AMEN! thank you for posting this.

    • Dee Dee_FL

      If I knew where to dumpster dive for those Q's, I'd be there!!!

      • Ew. The only reason I would dumpster dive is to save a loved one.

        • Misti

          she's diving in a newspaper only bin so its not like she's wading through banana peels and a bunch of gross stuff. just sayin…

      • Bee

        Yeah…I'm not sure why grabbing a few papers from a bin intended only for papers is such a huge deal. We check out books from the library that hundreds of others have handled, rent DVD's that have probably laid goodness-knows-where but because paper is piled in a dumpster, it is suddenly nastier than other community media items. At least the newspapers only visited one home and people who bring papers to recycling bins are usually pretty decent citizens.

        I don't get extra coupons from the recycle bin, but I know some people who do and they are by no means people who are out there or extreme.

      • CrazyCouponClipperChris

        The thought of dumpster diving to get some extra coupons never crossed my mind as a possibility. Honestly, if I knew how to do it (such as best locations, etc.) I'd likely try and grab a few extra sets of coupons each week. Does anyone do this and have any suggestions?

    • Leistend

      Nathan literally had hundreds of salad dressings neat and organized on his stockpile shelves. I understand that he donated the cereal but why stockpile that dressing? And it was obvious that he was stockpiling….you don't neatly put something on multiple shelves if you aren't hoarding. If you are stockpiling it you might keep five or so (because we all know it will go on sale again) and then the other couple hundred you would take directly to the food bank or at least leave it in the bags until you could get it there. Yeah, I saw the plug for his website on the show. I think this gave all couponers a bad rep. The dumpster diver probably took a lot of heat for her greediness and felt the need to redeem herself somewhat. She said in her area that sales come around every three months yet she stockpiled 40 boxes of pasta and 40 pasta sauces. That would mean in her household that they eat pasta 3.3333 times a week in that three month period. I have a husband and two college age sons that eat lotttts and we cannot eat pasta that much. In other words, that chick was hoarding. As an honest couponer and avid donater this whole thing made me angry and I agree with Jenny that it will only scare away folks that truly need to coupon.

      • Amanda

        I completely agree with everything you said. Nathan and the 1st lady really got on my nerves. I don't care if it's free. No one needs 216 boxes of pasta & 150 candy bars. It WILL go on sale again! It makes me more than a little annoyed when I go to the store for things I need and nothing is there because someone has cleaned out the shelves. I'm a single mom of a 10 year old boy with no car. I go to the store on my lunch break when a coworker doesn't mind going. When I am at the store, I like things to be there!
        It's great that Nathan special ordered the cereal and was donating it. But what about everything else he had? The shelf life of salad dressing is what 6-9 months? It seems like it goes on sale every few weeks (and I only shop Publix). Is he donating all of that too? I think the show said he had enough health & beauty products to last a normal couple 150 years. That isn't extreme. That isn't stockpiling. That is hoarding. :-/

        • earnjr8fan

          I agree!!! I didn't think they needed that big of a stockpile. I am beginning to stockpile myself, but not anywhere close to that extreme. I also thought they should donate the majority of that stuff.

    • Hbj80

      Jenny, I enjoyed reading your comments about couponing and the TLC show. I have been couponing for a little over a year now it has definitely become a lifestyle. I just totally agree with everything you stated.

    • Queeniennifer

      didn't watch either, because dtv is free :) now, from what i read over on kcl, This was made to be over the top. I stockpile, but things we wil use, money makers, and things that will work into a deal at rite aid to pay less for everything I get than the pack of diapers I would have got anyways. Now, one week I did buy about 20 old spice body sprays( .25 ea cost) but my husband goes thru at least one a week! I really love southernsavers, because being in Alabama, you post a lot of the stores I frequent. I mostly check mojosavinga and kcl because they will put up hot deals and mm throughout the day. (here I can check once or twice a day and be good) anyways, keep up the good work!

    • Imp

      Good response and I agree. But anything even couponing can prove addicting for a few people.
      I did not watch it but I know it repeats tonight at 12 am central if anyone wants to watch it. But the info on my tv guide for comcast says “Profiling four shopping addicts who go to extremes to find great deals.”
      So whether or not they made the point clear to those they recorded or when they broadcast it, it seems to me that it is more about people who are addicted to shopping rather than just using coupons to save money.
      Another thing is they are showing a lot of other “Addiction” shows right now as well. Like people eating toilet paper, sleeping with hairdryers, extreme bodybuilding, and sucking thumbs.

    • Misty103074

      I only agree with one thing from the show…I will never pay more than $1 for a box of cereal…however I only buy 2-4 at a time…not 1100 that 's just insane. It has meant a lot to my family since I have started cuponing, but I only spend about an hour a week.

      • Sherry

        He donated it to his church's food bank.

    • Sherry Guy38

      I actually enjoyed watching this show. And I feel that my way would be to start very small and work my way up. Would I love to have a garage full of supplies heck yea but do I see it as a waste yes I do. But I do like that that guy gave all that cereal to a food bank. Thats a great way to deal with huge amounts. Thank you for all your tips on here. Helps me so much. Thanks!!!

    • Capecoralcoupontraders

      I was totally an completely appalled by the show!! About 6 months ago, I decided that I needed to 'pay it forward' so to speak and teach others that were always asking me how I saved so much money and started a Life Group through my church that allows me to educate others about saving money and how to get 'free' money without spending anymore than you normally would. That show did nothing but feed off of every stereotype there is out there about couponers and then exploite it. I am shocked that th stores were so willing to allow their names to be plastered all over the program as well. They were not exactly shown in the best light either. The woman that bought the 250 boxes of pasta and 150 candy bars struck me as someone that should be on Hoarders, not Extreme Couponing. I'm in fear of the detrimental affects this show is actually going to have both on the beginner couponer as well as those that attempt to become a couponer and don't do things legitimately or ethically. Quite frankly, TLC is becoming more and more exploitive with their programming than they are educational like I remember it being a few years ago. Sorry, I didn't mean to step on soapbox, but it just makes me so angry!!

      • Misti

        I agree about TLC's programming-the next show was about people eating TP and Laundry Detergent…whats that got to do with anything? just exploiting people's weaknesses!

    • Tana

      I am curious as to what stores they are going to that double and triple and endless amount of the exact same coupon? The best I can do is Kroger doubling/tripling 3 like coupons, which is usually plenty for me – unless I am buying things like Gogurt and Capri Suns (3 small children).
      And the show was very staged to maximize savings. TLC called the show Extreme Couponing for a reason.

      • Guest

        I was wondering the same thing! I have one grocery store that will take four like coupons per visit – the others will only take three. The stores that double will only double twenty per day. I couldn't do that well in one visit even if I wanted to. We all know you can't do that well at CVS and the other drug stores. I feel lucky if there are two on the shelf to buy.

      • I saw Kroger and Safeway during the TV show.

    • Bee

      Well I have been doing the coupon thing in earnest for nearly a year and have to admit I don't have a true stockpile. I have a full pantry and a semi-full freezer that tend to stay that way consistently. I am not putting food in the garage. Too much opportunity for outside creatures to infest, etc.

      I enjoy not paying for shampoo, etc but having more than a few bottles does not make me feel any more secure so I just keep it down to a certain level. What does make me feel secure is not preparing my last meal in the house the day before grocery shopping. It used to be that way all the time. I used to be depressed after grocery shopping because I did it at Wal-Mart thinking they had the lowest prices and wondering why I couldn't afford enough to actually provide all the food my family needed. Now we have all of what we need and a great deal of what we want. We still don't have the lowest grocery budget I have heard of but are able to eat wonderful and wholesome meals without eating something repetitively or making everyone groan about eating spaghetti yet again.

      Although clipping coupons may take time, etc., time is saved by not having to indulge in other more time-consuming money-saving practices. I have never really wanted to be known as miserly, but I do not want to waste money, either, just to make cashiers and other shoppers happy. As long as coupons are out there, I am going to use them. And frankly, I've only had a handful of negative experiences, primarily at stores that act like IP coupons are fraudulent. Usually it's over a couple of dollars when I am spending a couple of hundred at the store.

    • Friend Facebooked me about the show. Reruns will be airing. Can't wait to watch on my DVR…

    • Elizabeth

      I did think the one lady from Philly was “normal” in her shopping, seemed to be the average grocery shopper. She was not spending money to save money as the others were doing, they did mention the one lady spent $70 on coupons before she ever went to the store so her $51 total should have included that $70 as well. The man asked why not buy 100 toothbrushes….my question would be why? I didn't see him donate those to a shelter of any kind or the deodrant and soap which would have been very much appreciated. I think it made the people look a bit off not the process of couponing…I sorta mentioned the newspaper recycle bin in front of the school to my son, he told me it was to close to the road and to stay out of it, I would be seen….he also told me to turn off the T.V , it was giving me crazy ideas. Interesting show, but cant see it hitting prime time on ABC anytime soon……

      • Allie

        On his website, Nathan said that all of the Total, the deoderant and bodywash were all being donated.

    • Memomma2003

      The last guy they showed who bought 1,100 boxes of cereal was way outta control! I am sure most that food and will go bad before his family can eat it all. I think that is just being greed! Just because he can get it for free doesn't mean he has to get ALL there is! I do get 3 or 4 papers and I share deals with my family and donate to the food bank. Couponing helps me be generous, as you have suggested so many times. It also helped me with stocking stuffers and gifts for Christmas. Thanks for keeping it real for us!

      • Gunter00

        He said on You Tube that they were told to go EXTREME so that's what they all did. I don't think these people normally shop that way, but the media got what they wanted and made it look like something it isn't. Also, he donated it to the food bank at his Church it said on the show.

        • Misti

          I'm sure they went a little more extreme for the show but from the looks of their stockpiles, its a pretty common thing for them!

      • Amanda

        He said that he was donating the cereal to his church's food bank.

    • Jen

      Nicely said, Jenny! I know you pointed out that stores get reimbursed for coupons but what concerns me are folks that do clear the shelves and/or take advantage. Sometimes I get worried that merchants will stop offering awesome deals for that reason.

    • Lisaleared

      I like your responce. I'm new to this and needed to here that 6 weeks worth of a stockpile is enough!!! LOL Thanks.

    • Runamuk

      Think of how many care packages for the troops they could be making.

    • I enjoyed the show. I have hit a lull in my couponing and needed a swift kick in the pants and this show did just that. There are many things that we are running low on since I started school so now i really want to get back in the swing of things and get my sundry stockpile built back up. Now if I could just find a good deal on toilet paper…thats always a hard 1 for me to find.

    • Jennifer

      Thank you so much for all that you do. I have tried to help several people around me coupon, and I tell them not to clean out the shelves, or stress, or get crazy, or run all over town like a maniac. Couponing has helped me so much. Anything good or bad taken to the extreme, is not a good thing! and I know that this is your attitude too.

      • Ajn127

        i have to agree with Jnnifer and i to say thank you very much for help me sae a lot of dinero (money in spanish).

    • Beth

      I only saw the last guy on the show & I agree that was way out of control. Who needs that much of anything? Not even a co-op needs 1,100 boxes of Total cereal. I think this show will give people a bad taste for couponers. That is obsessive hoarding like it's an addiction. I don't see the need to have more than a few weeks supply of anything. There is a discussion about this on hip2save also.

      • Sam123

        Nathan actually mentioned that he donated the cereal to his church's food bank.

        • Beth

          Yes, I saw that. Our church has a food pantry and we also give food to a co-op serving that area. Neither of them or even both together would need that many boxes of Total cereal. Okay, maybe if it were kids cereal but still that is a ton of cereal! I still think it's obsessive but that's just my opinion. I agree with Jennifer that anything taken to an extreme isn't a good thing. I have had the same problem with shelves being cleared out when I had planned to buy one or two of several items. I've saved a lot of money couponing also but I would never buy more than a few weeks worth of anything. There's always another deal right around the corner.

    • earnjr8fan

      I really wish I could get $600 worth of food for $2. I liked some of the people on the show. I get as excited about the deals as they do. I just haven't gone to that extreme and I hope I never do. I do wish that some of the ones with the HUGE stockpiles would donate more of the stuff though.

    • LadySiren

      Jenny, thanks SO much for an even-handed, well-reasoned response. I cringe to think that people who don't “get” couponing will pick up the wrong idea about what couponers do.

      I shared some tips with an editor whom I'm friendly with over at another consumer blog awhile back. I included photos of my stockpile but noted that some of what I bought was meant for donation and that we supplement what we buy in terms of boxed goods (i.e. – Hamburger Helper) with fresh veggies and other healthy menu items. I *still* got raked over the coals big time, so much so that I'll NEVER participate in another “OMG XTREME COUPONERS!!” story. Ever.

      Shows like the one tonight portray couponers in a terrible light and we all end up getting painted with the same broad brush. Most “normal” consumers will watch the show and tsk their tongue while complaining about hoarding, conspicuous consumption, and such, but never understand that this is a very conscious lifestyle that we've chosen to live. It works for us but it's not for everyone – it requires organization, planning, and good fiscal strategies – as it does take some effort.

      In any case, thanks again for your hard work on SS. Your blog is a must-read for anyone who wants to be a successful couponer.

      • Tawanda

        Eloquently written.

    • Rbs44

      If anyone has any interest in hearing some of the comments from Nathan from the show you can go here http://www.weusecoupons.com/upload/frugaltv/100351-you-ask-ill-answer-ask-mr-coupon-about-tlcs-new-show-called-extreme-couponers.html

      He has created a forum where people ask questions and he tapes a video response and posts it. Some of the answers were interested and one thing he did say was he was not paid for this show (was surprised by that myself) and that the only thing TLC told him was make this trip the most extreme biggest trip you have ever done. So it sounded to me like this was not normal for him which is a huge relief! I am sure his couponing is still “extreme” compared to most of us but definitely not on the level of this show regularly at least

    • Anelson44

      Extremists ruin it for everyone. I mean I like Cats but I stopped at 1. When I coupon I get one paper,and my mom gives me her coupons. I get enough for our family only. I don;'want to ruin couponing for everyone else, I need to leave sales for others. You helped me stretch my money so much! My husband has been out of work since 2008 and we have managed to pay all our bills by keeping our expenses down. Thanks for listening!

    • Andreajenkins22

      Jenny, regardless if I save only 25% at the grocery, or get a whopper of a deal, I will never ever again shop the way I did before I became a couponer. Couponing has not made me crazy, just informed, aware, and frugal. I still pay full price for a few of our family-favorites, but now I respect deals and know when to stock-up.

      My entire view on retail shopping has changed as well. Coupons for the mall? You bet! Snagging free shipping and cash-back on online sale items? Absolutely! Searching for promo codes? Why not?

      This does not make me a lunatic or obsessed, just a smart, savvy shopper. Nothing wrong with that.

      You taught me everything I know about shopping. Here's a 'thanks' beyond measure!

    • Loveshoppingdeals

      If you've been doing this for long enough you know that;

      1. They paid a pretty penny for a lot of those ordered coupons, which was never mentioned. AND a lot of them were tearpad coupons which means they probably raped the displays.
      2. Their purchases were HYPED up FOR this show. Hence the keyword 'Extreme'.
      3. A few of them are totally resellers!!!! Known fact!

      • CrazyCouponClipperChris

        There are folks who purchase items from the store for little or no money and then resell them? The thought of doing that never crossed my mind. I would think that if their operation got too big they would need a warehouse just to store it all.

    • Elaine

      Jenny, Thanks for all that you do at your web site! This show sounds interesting, but not for me. I grocery shop one time a week because I have to go to a neighboring town to shop and if some one has swept the shelves clean before I get there, my coupons do me no good! I buy no more than a few of anything I get and leave the rest for someone else. What grocery stores could these people have been shopping at?

    • Susieqbutter2

      Jenny, I disagree with your suggestion to only stock up for 6 weeks. If space and money permits, 3-6months is possibly a better suggestion considering the economic circumstances in which we live! With inflation and job lay-offs, if any of us had to live minus an income, it may take longer than 6 weeks to find another job. Having a 3-6month stockpile would help us get through the financial storms of a job loss when all our money will need to pay the mortgage, electric bill, car payment, etc! But thanks for all your other advice! It's possible to slowly build up and rotate a 6 month stockpile without clearing the shelves. I'm doing it!

    • kaycee'smom

      I couldn't believe the woman that had 3000 packages of toliet paper. I don't know that anyone could use that many packages of toliet paper. I have been couponing for the past year and using a spread sheet to total my purchases for the year and I am proud to say I have saved over $3000 this year by using coupons. I have backed off somewhat the last 2 months on health and beauty aids because I had plenty for our family of 3. I was able to fill 2 large grocery bags with just things from my pantry and donate them to a Holiday food drive this year for the first time and it felt wonderful. I do have a funny story about shopping in a department store right before Christmas and thinking I can't buy today when it will all be 50-75% the day after Christmas and yes, I was there the day after Christmas.

      • Jason

        I'm the same way. When I started couponing my goal was to save $2,000 in a year….I did that in 3 months! I've now really slacked off in my buying because I'm pretty well stocked up on stuff and there is no “need” to buy more at this point!

        I'm just glad that Jenny does what she does, so I can do what I do! Thanks Jenny!

      • Tab

        Would you share your spread sheet?

    • Allison

      The show was really misdirected. It was title “Addicted: extreme couponing” for a reason. That guy at the end wasn't addicted, he was a hoarder! When you can't park in your 2 car garage, “Hello” there's a problem. Who needs 100 toothbrushes and 60 jars of handsoap???

    • Cherrylynnbailey

      Well that 1st lady is the reason I can never find anythingon the darn shelf!!!!!!!!greedy people!!!!

    • Donna

      Talk about people who want to make you throw up! Let's not acknowledge any kind of bond with them. I enjoy honest, responsible, legal couponing. These things will ruin it for those of us who act properly. I am very grateful for “Southern Savers”. I was living in Florida until recently and I relied heavily on “Iheartpublix” and that was wonderful then but now I really need Jenny – thank you for all you do for us. Donna Turner

    • SufieGold84

      I seem to share some of the same sentiments good and bad as others have expressed. I will say though I connected best with the lady from Philadelphia just because I've asked friends (local and even out of town) to hold onto coupons for me to ship and started couponing out of necessity. Needless to say couponing is definitely a lifestyle and I'm deep in it!

    • bean

      Just finished watching a couple of segments of the show. While I will admit, I am jealous of their savings, I find it ridiculous to stock pile years worth on items that are perishable such as juice, soda, cereal, etc. In fact, it's a money LOSS if you aren't going to be able to consume it before it perishes. I think it's irresponsible to clear the shelves of hundreds of boxes of pasta if you have no intention of eating it, when there are REAL families with REAL struggles that might need that food because it's all they could afford. It makes me a bit sick. I'm single and I coupon. I never take more than I can consume and/or donate. That's just greedy.

    • Marielovesgod

      Jenny I thank you for your comments. Let's stay balanced and content. Just as people can make “money their God” we can fall into making “coupons our God”. Let's prayer for the grace to be prudent in our trying to save for our families while staying balanced.

    • Jane

      Can we say…. Resellers?! There is a hoarder lady a town over who has GARAGE SALES from her “stockpiles.” She sells them cheaper than the stores but certainly makes a pretty penny herself. Something tells me some of these people do the exact thing.

      • tambry

        Which is actually illegal. Items are packaged 'not for resale'. There are also certain liabilities in selling certain products and I wouldn't want to get sued for doing something stupid to make $.50 on a tube of toothpaste.

      • MD

        Yep….ebay is another place where people sell drugstore items. I sold on ebay for 2 years and saw a lot of pharmacy product sellers and would wonder where they got the stuff to sell…..I mean if a mascara is $3 at the store and they sell for $3 on ebay how are they making money?? The mascara was probably free with a coupon and they proabably bought 100 of them…You also see people on ebay making a good $ off selling coupons from the coupon iserts from Sundays paper…

    • Happymommy3

      This show is crazy!! Jenny,thanks for your thoughts on this show. I think we all need to remember why we do this and that you must give back to others. There are families out there that may get one meal a day. Then you look at these people that are hoarding food in their houses and wonder why they are not sharing with others in need. I hope this show does not give others a bad name!!

    • Brcrowson

      I have to agree, that this site makes couponing SO much easier and more efficient than if Jenny didn't do what she does (THANK YOU!!)- so the desire to go bananas with it is truly a choice. The show is definitely extreme, and I have to agree with suggestions that these people with stockpiles would do well to consider donating to homeless shelters and soup kitchens, rather than simply admiring their hoard. Nathan could have given away more than just the cereal, though that was a generous gesture. Their stories were inspiring in a way, but at the same time, it's not something for me to aspire to. I notice a TON of soda, candy bars and processed food- if that's what you'd buy anyway, then OK. However, it would be a shame if their obsession with couponing affects their nutritional choices.

      • I saw Nathan on other shows and he donates lots of stuff to charities, food banks and his church. He is a nice guy that just figured out something we do a much smaller level. I understand he is extreme but for a guy like me he is hope I can do half as much as he does and as if nobody commented here or other sites yet, they all said this has helped them become debt free or almost debt free! If we only take that angle of it and run with it, we can all aspire to be debt free!

        • MD

          In his defense he did call the store and order all that cereal…He didnt just go in there and clear out the shelf. He also bought it with the intention of donating it all…

    • Hinata1012008

      Hi I'm 15 and me and my best friend just watched the show , so we came up with a pretty cool idea. Were gonna become extreme couponers , and then donate most of it. Idk why the people on the show feel as if the have to save up for so many years like really ? its selfishness to me when there's so many starving people out there and you got 400 liters of soda. Its about time we stop thinking about our selves and consider others.

      • Good for you! We need our future breadwinners and moms to start showing this country that teens can make a huge impact and show some adults how it's done!

    • Bm_nichols

      I have been trying to get into couponing. I live in small rural town with one grocery store that doubles coupons and a Walmart. I receive all the online coupons, I shop at Walmart and have never thought to shop at the smaller grocery store that doubles coupons. Wlamart has always seemed cheaper to me. I am a little confused on couponing I guess. We also have a CVS and a Walgreens but have never thought to shop there either because they are so much pricier than Walmart. Is is worth to double coupons or use the single coupon at Walmart?

      • As an avid Southernsavers follower and mid level couponer, I can tell you, only do walmart on under $1 and free stuff otherwise use store that doubles and always come back here for CVS and Walgreens scenarios! Jenny showed me that a lot of times the pharmacies are the best place to shop! Keep coming back here to find out how and watch her vidoes on how to coupon!

      • One thing you have to remember is that Wal Mart does not usually have sales. You use your coupons at the store that doubles WHEN THE ITEM IS ON SALE. If there is something that I need and it's not on sale, I usually go to Wal Mart or Dollar General.

    • Ladah Turner

      i agree. I did not see the show, but from what I read I hate that it even was on. owell, people that don't really know, just don't know and more coupons for us :)It does not take up too much of my time & it saves my family a ton. It is very rewarding to see my money go so far, since my husband works so hard for every penny. take nothing for granted…and thank you for helping us do so.

    • Lori

      I watched that show tonight…I think they meant for that to be a hoarders show.

    • CrazyCouponClipperChris

      Haven't seen the show, nor do I intend too. I've used coupons for a few years, but only started using Southern Savers as a tool in the last few months. Using Southern Savers has saved me a good deal of money in the time. When I started using Southern Savers, my family first thought I had gone insane. They just didn't get the how idea of purchasing food for a 6-8 week period of time. But after I started showing them my savings, they understood and were amazed at all the savings I have been getting. I've also been able to increase my donations.

    • CrazyCouponClipperChris

      One thing I love about couponing is that you are able to share some of your insight with other customers at the store. Some folks (customers and cashiers) see the savings I get and ask how I am able to do it. I tell them the websites I use, where I get coupons from, etc. The best feeling was the time I was sharing some of my knowledge a lady with a small child and she thanked me because her husband had just lost his job and they needed to save money anywhere they could.

    • Amiah

      sigh…. This was a horrible way for the show to portray couponing…. I am “the coupon queen” in my area and I have been teaching free coupon classes for over a year now. There were a few correct things that were mentioned but in my opinion, this was hoarding. So many people are in need and could really benefit from those items. It was quite upsetting. Couponing is not about 1000 rolls of toilet paper or filling your garage with food for a year….

      • trixiebell

        LOL, I told my husband that the first lady needed to go straight from the coupon show to the hoarders show. It was really sad. I was impressed by the savings, but disgusted by how awful she treated her husband and even more so how her home was being consumed by items that would spoil before she could ever use them. I didn’t watch the rest of the show. It was more than I could take.

    • Vickitucker28

      Thanks for making me not feel like a crazed couponer/sorry I missed the show but will hope to view it soon on internet or repeats I was out couponing actually!haha/I have always done this somewhat since I first had kids/but out of neccesity I have picked up the pace in the past couple of years/the economy has gone so down hill and Nobama isn't helping anything for the middle class/God bless America and you/thank you for your tips and encouragement!Happy couponing/love the looks of other shoppers in line when they see how much we save!!!

    • nervouslycouponing

      It is shows like this that makes it hard for people that coupon out of necessaty(like our family)to do so with out embaressment. The Cashiers are already rude and indignent when you come to the counter with coupons in hand. Many Customers behind me start to sigh and grunt, but for me with a monthly food budget of $800 and having to feed 5 adults and 3 kids, the economy is to hard. I cant afford to get that many boxes of cereal or toilet paper(we eat it all or dont have enough coupons to do that)!!!! Because of our family situation, with out Jenny and couponing(THANKS JENNY!!!) the kids would not have had a christmas and the girls would not have gotten to take anything to school for there classmates and friends. The kids and i did alot of baking as gifts that was all made possible buy Couponing and Southern Savers…. TLC needs to consider the impact it makes on normal people before showing fictionally blown out of perportion and calling it ¨*reality¨*.

    • Thank you for your post. I started Treats For Troops about 5 years ago and what started with simply sending a couple of home baked cookies to the soldiers in remote war areas has grown to sending 6 TONS of care packages every week. We have 300 addresses (about 140,000 soldiers) on our list that we send packages to because they don’t have access to a PX (store on base) or it’s simply too dangerous for them to go. Our postage bill every month is $60,000.

      I watched the show last night and looked beyond the way TLC made these couponers look and actually learned a LOT and am on a mission now.
      We spend thousands of dollars at the supermarket, because what we don’t get donated, we have to buy with a very limited budget. I am going to read up on every article about “how to coupon” and start putting coupons aside.
      WOW, what a great way to save.

      Please look us up: http://www.TreatsForTroops.INFo and if you like, and have no use for certain products, we will definitely take it to send to our soldiers. ANYTHING you go to the store for, THEY don’t have it either.
      Karin King/Treats For Troops
      ~until they ALL come home!

    • green giant!

      After the show, I found a site called http://www.weusecoupons.com. If you go to this site, there is a section on Nathan’s shopping. You need to read it, I was very enlightened by the fact that he donates $1000.00 every year to charity by using coupons. It also states that all the cereal, toothbrushes, deodorant, etc. was donated to local charities. He also went to Kroger, preordered the items, but the show made him stage being removed from the shelf. So I think we need to do some more background checking, before we hang him out to dry. If the store allows you to preorder 1000 boxes of cereal and your giving them to charity — go for it! Just remember that when they film these shows–the more outrageous they can make someone seem, the better ratings they get!!! Check out the site and see what Nathan says about the actual shopping experience. (I can agree that somethings seemed to boarder or hoarding, but I also haven’t been without–I would also like to see if the others gave some of there stash away to needed people or friends in need.

    • Rbs44

      I am not surprised the show is getting so much reaction, TLC is good at what they do and they intended for it too. If they produced a show where the people only saved 75 or 100 like most “normal” couponers do regularly it would not nearly have been so entertaining to watch. Since I dont know these people for sure I can not say but I do have a feeling a lot of what they did was hyped up for the show. It is obvious to me though that at least the 1st lady is not just a couponer she has a psychological issue attached to it. When I first started couponing after reading SouthernSavers and another site I too started to become addicted. NEVER like these people, but it became less about what i was buying and more about the fact that I could save so much and get so much. After a trip where I was buying things I dont even use, I realized it was not a path I wanted to go down so after a month of that I realized that I could still save tons and get excited and get that “high” these people were talking about even when only saving a normal amount and buying things we use. I do see the negative side of the publicity this will bring to couponers but I hope that people realize it was called Extreme Couponing for a reason and that in the end it is still made for entertainment. I do wish that they would have showed the positive side of these peoples actions a little more as after a little research online I see that some of them have sites and teach people about couponing (hopefully not so extreme) and donate a fair bit to local charities. I did find it funny that the lady kept saying Krazy Coupon Lady over and over and had her son say it, so I knew she must have a site called that and of course she does. I totally understand and respect why jenny would choose not to do a show like this, but I also see why some people may. For me personally, I feel like at least it is not another reality show where it is hurting people, showing woman fighting, showing partying etc. In the end, I am sure this show is doing exactly what it was made for me, getting people talking. Hopefully some people will see they can actually save tons from couponing and get on the bandwagon and hopefully realize that it does not take 1100 boxes of cereal to save money!

      I also told my husband I dont understand why that lady would walk up and down the aisles for hrs a day making her list, why doesnt she just use SouthernSavers!

    • Mlkdivine3

      You summed it up so well in everything you posted inits entirety. Couponing has become a normal part of my life that reaps rewards, savings, and great benefits. Now, I always have people asking me how do find savings themselves………..and I share my coupons with others. I check this site daily and it definitely has been instrumental in my effort to save, save ,save!!!

      • CrazyCouponClipperChris

        I too try to share coupons with others. In fact, if I see someone eying an item or in the checkout lane without a coupon for an item, and I know I have a spare coupon, I'll try to find it in my envelope and give it to them. You never know what that small extra savings might mean to them. Also, if there is anyone looking for a specific coupon and they need help getting it, give a shout out. I'll try to assist where I can.

        • Anonymous

          If I can’t give my coupons to anyone, I’ll leave them throughout the store on the items they’re for. I’m like the coupon fairy, LOL.

          • Sarah

            I love it when people do this! Someone does this at my store and I will grab one if needed. You are a coupon fairy! lol

    • Sherryb

      Both Nathan and manders are on weusecoupons. They both donated the shopping trip to a local food bank and PREORDERED the items they got. they did not clear shelves and did a special big run just for the show. While I do not buy that much at a time, I enjoyed seeing what could be done..If we take the time to research the other shoppers we will see that it was not what the show made it out to be!

    • Slj9899

      I would have to say I’m addicted but in a good way! I’m addicted to saving money, not buying everything that is on sale or not leaving anything for others!!

      Here’s a link to an ABC 6 minute show on extreme couponing. They consider these people hoarders with compulsive disorders. One lady has 40 years worth of toilet paper. Who would do that??


    • Slj9899

      I would have to say I’m addicted but in a good way! I’m addicted to saving money, not buying everything that is on sale or not leaving anything for others!!

      Here’s a link to an ABC 6 minute show on extreme couponing. They consider these people hoarders with compulsive disorders. One lady has 40 years worth of toilet paper. Who would do that??


    • Sahe3433

      After watching the show, I was curious to find out more about couponers. Joyce, one of the people feature on the tlc show actually puts her couponing to use and helps others. She has her own couponing club where she teaches others how to save money. She also stresses to donates items that you don’t use or need. It was also nice how she was teaching her friend how to shop during the segment. I found a clip on her

    • ClemsonMommie

      Thank you so much for responding Jenny. Every family has their “crazy” aunt or uncle… these people are our's (the couponing family). This show did not make it any easier for those of us that coupon in moderation and do it out of necessity… but I will continue to help others learn to coupon as you've taught me. So disappointed in TLC… would have been nice for them to have touched on a few “normal couponers”. Oh well! Happy New Year Everyone!

    • Michelle9953

      I agree Jenny, you have taught us well. I will NEVER spend 70 hours a week couponing and planning to coupon. I felt sorry for that first husband who apparantly was very frustrated that his wife spent more time “shopping” than enhancing her relationship with him. Poor guy.. anyway, I agree, no need to make it a second job, only a smart way to save money. Thanks again for helping us to understand that like many other things, it's a lifestyle change, not a lifetime commitment to insanity.

    • Well said, Jenny!!

    • David

      Amen, you are so right. I love your site and it has saved me and my family so much money it is unreal. Thanks for all the hard work you put into this every day.

    • Blumpkin3

      My husband and I watched only 10 minutes of it and I said “change the channel”. I have been couponing for about 2 months now. My friend helped me get started and we use Southern Savers as our guide. At first I wanted to quit b/c it can be overwhelming, but I stuck with it and I have been excited about my savings and feel I get a little better each week. HOWEVER, that show made me feel like a failure! Your article makes me feel better. I may not be doing as well as someone else, but I am saving more than I was a few months ago! I won't trade my sanity for savings!
      I appreciate all the work you put into helping me and others save! Thank you!!

    • Hazelflagg

      This is an area in which I have expertise. I brought a lawsuit against a media organization. They called what I did a hobby, after I had become as competitive
      and skilled as their all male professionals and I asked for pay. I had professional training and worked more hours than some of their employees. They did everything they could to mischaracterize my role. This is a legal tactic so they don't have to pay
      people. Reality TV takes the same tactic. Read the trades. They show how hard the unions have had to fight back to get reality TV shows to pay their showrunners a working wage.

      Anytime anyone, but particularly women, free their finances to have extra money to make their own choices. that includes the choice of free speech, there is a corporate backlash. You should watch which corporate advertisers back these shows, or even other shows by the same producers, knowledge is power.

      You were correct not to participate. This is designed to pit people against each other
      instead of helping each other or helping the homeless. I worked in TV advertising for a
      short time and it is deliberate.

    • NANENI1


    • Tammy Van Maanen

      I didn't watch it and SO GLAD I did not waste my time. My bf called me last night after it aired is the only reason I even know about it. From the way she described it…it should have been on the “Hoarders” show…NOT couponing. I agree, at about the 4th week of couponing, it felt a little obsessive but I still never let it take over my life. I have since my start in Sept of this year, learned to pace myself and only buy (as I have extra) a few weeks ahead. I always get the free stuff even if I don't use it and just give it to my friends or the church food bank. I was able to give a large box at Christmas and that was a wonderful feeling. I think it is extremely important to continue to give a portion away to a charity; just to keep it in perspective. Thank you Jenny!!!

    • Katrina

      I watched the show last night and i thought that it was a little bit crazy with the guy buying all the cereal and toothbrushes. I cant think of a store where i live in Charlotte North Carolina that would let you buy that much product at one time and use all your coupons. Most stores here have a limit of 3 to 4 coupons of the same item in the same transaction. I believe this was a little over rated. I do alot of couponing and i really enjoy it but i dont go to this extreme. Thanks for all you do to help us all out.

      • momof3

        Katrina, We just moved from that area….In Union Co., there's a woman who actually does classes, but she does that sort of thing…If I saw her at my HT, I'd make sure to hurry up, because I knew she'd be clearing the shelves! (Our store wouldn't enforce the coupon limit…)

    • Lilnascar97

      Extreme couponing is just addictive behavior where people are addicting to couponing. Addiction is addiction is addiction. It does't matter if is sex, drugs, alcohol… couponing. People are just addicted and need intervention.

      • Karen

        Absolutely true! I find myself buying just because it's a good deal. Ending up with too many boxes of cereal and other things that go bad. I even had to throw away a couple bags of food because of this. My new years resolution is to watch this addiction and limit my coupons to those that I really need and give away the rest.

    • CLB246624

      Thank you for all you do for us to make this a seamless and easy process! I have been able to cut our grocery bill in half since starting to follow your site.

    • Karen

      But really!!!???? 1,100 boxes of cereal???? I would be so honked off if I needed cereal and I came up behind this guy and there was nothing on the shelves.

      • Beckiathome

        He special ordered 1,000 boxes

    • Andrea

      Ditto I couldnt agree more with your response to the show. I am a wife and mother to a famiy of five my husband has been laid off from the corporate world for almost a year. Your advice had saved me tons and gave me a new perspective on shopping.

    • LW

      I am in an area where there is no easy access to a paper with coupon inserts. What is the best way to purchase these inserts? Thanks!

      • Anonymous

        Try some of the online clipping services, like The Coupon Clippers. You can buy individual coupons and possibly whole inserts.

    • momof3

      Okay…Who has storage for that many cereal boxes? And….Why????

    • Kellee

      I could not believe the stockpiles on this show! How much stuff do you really need? 100 toothbrushes, 80 deodorant, all those boxes of pasta? I felt bad for Amanda's husband; she just took over his man cave with all of that pasta!

      I live in Davidson, NC (small town outside of Charlotte) and my grocery stores have limits on how many items you can buy and how many coupons per transaction. I believe in saving money, but this was to the extreme! 40 jars of pasta!!!!!!!! Lets not forget all of that cereal! Thank you for this blog!

      • jen

        this made me laugh.. ” I felt bad for Amanda's husband; she just took over his man cave with all of that pasta!”

        • Kellee

          Pasta covered the whole sofa! I would never do that to my hubby!

    • Karen

      I did not see the show but can imagine by what you wrote. I was very negative about couponing until I found myself in a situation like yours when you began. I went to your seminar here in MS and realized that you can be reasonable, sane, and totally normal and still save your family money. I am still amazing at what you personally accomplish with small children but am honing and perfecting my skill so I am a better steward of my time. However, the point I am making is that YOU are why I realized that this was something I could do. You are way to normal to be on one of those shows. Thanks for your service to those of us who are not obsessed but just want to save a little money.

    • the2Morans

      My husband said he would divorce me if I EVER were to become that extreme. Or if I referred to my grocery store run as a “haul”. LOL!! Of course that would never happen because I wouldn't ever become that addicted to couponing. I like the idea of finding extra coupons, I do that already at Starbucks when people leave the coupons out! I agree with many of you who believe that the first woman has some sort of psychological disorder.

      Jenny~what you have done for me is enough for me and my family. I appreciate your articles, your grocery store lists, how organized your site is, and ALL that you do. I can tell that your passion is in HELPING people make changes in their lives so that we ALL can save as we manage in these difficult times.

    • Aaupchurch96

      need to keep in mind that any store that willingly doubles coupons is doing so at a loss to them. Exp. if your store makes a 50 cent coupon worth a dollar that extra 50 cent they give you comes right off their bottom line. It is not figured in to their budget but just accepted as one more service.

    • Alison

      I LOVE your response… I completely agree with you. I was sickened by last night's show for the very reasons you mentioned.

    • Jdaniel4smom

      This doesn't sound like my kind of show. I stockpile, but not to an extreme.

    • Ck

      I just wabt to know how to get free toilet paper..

    • Mcleodsc

      I guess I had a very different reaction to the show. I was in awe of the food stockpiles. With the current economy it would be very helpful to have several months of food in case of job loss or illness resulting in loss of income. I have just about given up couponing at the grocery stores around here. I usually stick to CVS and WAGs. I can go into our local Bi-Lo with 10 coupons and get the rudest treatment ever. I am treated like a criminal for using coupons. The cashiers have to actually pull the items back out of the bag and match the coupon to the item instead of letting the register match it. It was extremely frustrating and time consuming. For the past year I shop mostly at Aldis where you cannot use coupons.
      After seeing this show I am going to try Bi-Lo and Food Lion again. If I encounter problems I will take my business back to Aldi.
      I have a good stock pile of items from CVS and WAGS. I donate items regularly so the stockpile does not get too large. I like having 6 months of shampoo, tooth paste, toilet paper, and laundry detergent as well as a good assortment of over the counter medicenes.
      Also, where I live it is illegal to dumpster dive. People have been arrested for dumpster diving.
      I help my mom, dad & stepmom, adult kids, and friends. I was recently able to help a neighbor that got sick over the holidays and desperately needed over the counter cold/cough meds but was too sick to go to the store. I help a local adult living facility with a large box of items regularly.
      Like I stated, I was in awe of the food stockpiles. We live on a small income that I stretch as far as I can.
      The only negative thing I saw was the lady with the huge grocery order. If it had been me, I would have talked to the manager and asked that another checkout be opened to accomodate the large order. I would never ever try to purchase that much at one time with coupons or without coupons.

    • Alexmccarrell

      It is shows and people like this that make us look bad. Like jenny said these manufacturers make and distribute these coupons for us to use. Then people are rude and judge like weare doing something wrong! Everything in moderation and you are fine! And always remember to be nice, even to the rude cashiers.

    • Liz

      These people think about themselves. Why buy so many boxes of cereals or toilet paper? This is greed.

    • Emarsh6711

      This show is nutters. Shocking another reality show that is crap. Thats why I don't watch them. Thanks for all u do and if ever i buy 1000s of something lets hope it was for pennies. lol

    • I had two issues-one is wiping the shevles CLEAN of everything so nobody else has a chance to buy. If you are going to do that (and know in advance) maybe you can call the store to have them stock up on it (like the last guy did with the total cereal). Yes, you can get a raincheck if they are out but come on! That is NOT being fair!! Kinda rude IMO.

      Second-my local stores doubles 20 Qs per day, per shopper card. Now we don't have Safeway so they might have different rules but I don't see how they use (and I am pretty sure they all said that the stores doubled all of them) all of those coupons even in 2 or three transactions when they had hundreds of items to buy. Seems like TLC might have done something “made for TVish” thing to that. Just my 2 cents worth.

      Now I am off to HT to do my last run of 2010-where I promise not to wipe the shelves clean of sause or body wash :)

    • Wendy

      I've been following your site since I moved to SC in July! You have an AWESOME system here and I use your site a couple of times a week atleast! I watched most of this show last night and was overwhelmed for these people. It seemed to me that these people almost have an addiction. I'm sorry if you have THAT much food in your garage or “storage” room and you allow it to expire before donating it, that's irresponsible in my book. Whether you paid any money for it or not doesn't matter. Give it away to people that can use and actually NEED it. I did hear one of them (the guy with the 1100boxes of cereal) say he was going to donate SOME to his church. Which was nice to hear. I can get overwhelmed sometimes but I just walk away from my coupons and come back later. I go to 2 stores and probably spend a couple of hours (not all at once) a week on my coupons and I save quite a bit. I just found this show was focused on extreme cases and not for the average every day person!

    • branchofthevine

      this sounds a lot like how homeschooling is portrayed. Thats why I would never do a spot on TV for that.

    • Like many of you, I haven't watched the show. I probably will at some point since TLC re-runs everything a million times. Unfortunately, I'm afraid it will just further make level-headed couponers like we fans of Southern Savers a bad name and the label of “crazy.”

      I will admit to buying 10 boxes of pasta in one trip to Publix when it's on sale and I have coupons. That's probably the largest quantity I will buy in one trip, if there's plenty of pasta there. If not, I'd buy less. I'll put three on the shelf for my family and the other seven will get donated to Clipping for a Cause, who will donate it to one of the many area food banks or shelters. That's what I love to do most!

      However, I will never jump in a dumpster to find inserts. NO WAY. My husband said if I ever did that, we would have “issues” and I agree. There are just so much I will do to save and combing through trash for inserts is not one of them.

    • ckj

      I watched this show last night and the first thing that went through my head was they must not know about southern savers. Couponing is fun but doesn't have to be time consuming! my second thought was how sad that they had all of those things and didn't donate.

    • Nichols_again

      I knew when the show came on it wouldn't be something positive, but more entertaining, and it was…I laughed so hard at some of these people that I could not hardly get a grip. The first lady spends TWO hours at the checkout…ummm looks like she is about to have a heart attack and she is buying over 100 candy bars…GROSS. I thought the show was great and will for sure watch it again but ONLY for entertainment.

    • Meganf827

      While I did not see the show on TLC, I have tried other methods of couponing. When I started to follow Souther Savers is when couponing stopped overwhelming me. Thank you Southern Savers!

    • mommyof4

      I think it is SO sad to have all of that food for such a small family. There are so many needy people out there and to see how people are hoarding for themselves is really awful. I like having a small stock pile but I also have a family of 6. We were just given a new washer/dryer for Christmas that requires the HE detergent and I was so excited to donate our older w/d AND the bulk detergent that I had (which was 7). To me… the people on this show are nothing more than greedy.

    • MsGail1965

      I apppreciate your post. We have to have common sense, you gave us info on coupons,we make the decision how we go about it! Thank you for info!!!

    • Yelik01

      I watched the show last night and could not believe my eyes those are crazy amount of items that some people are purchasing to keep for themselves. I did like that fact that the man at the end gave food away to the local food bank. Wow is all i have to say!

    • Kb

      I didnt have a chance to watch it, but I agree with you Jenny! People liek this only make thos eof us who don't buy 50 boxes of cereal look weird for getting, 6 or so.

      Couponing allows me to give most of what I get to our church's food collection for children's homes and just various friends. I LOVE giving things away, no matter what it is and couponing is how I can do that and not break the bank!

      In fact, my husband's in the military and before we left for our 2 week vacation I went through my pantry and gave away everything that would or might expire before we got back……cereal for one thing!

    • JT

      I thought the show was a bit over the top. Especially the guy with 1000 boxes of Total — come on really? That IS crazy. I have been couponing with SS for almost a year. I buy only what my family uses and have saved a bundle doing so! To buy stuff and have to convert your garage into a “grocery store” is ridiculous. That show was surely a seque into hoarding, don't you think? Good grief!

      Jenny, continue doing what you're doing. We appreciate you and all the hard work you put into helping those of us save a few bucks!

    • Guest

      I did not watch TLC's show and don't think I will but I want to thank you for taking time to create and maintain this website and help several of us save money on various things. Don't care what any show says. Thanks!

    • LP366

      Thank you for your very sane post and position on couponing. I watched part of that show last night and was a little put off by how coupon users are portrayed. As I sat there and saw their massive stock plies, I thought “How sad, next month they'll be on Hoarders”. Thank you for advocating common sense and starting small!

    • Someday273

      The show was interesting… and it made me feel pretty good. I know that I finally made it in the coupon world because I can shop as well as they did – I just choose to keep it in the normal range.

      One thing I thought was REALLY misleading for anyone who does not coupon is how they got all the produce, milk and meat for nothing. They didn't show how they must have had overages – because when was the last time you found a coupon for a $6 roasting chicken? I saw a show like this about 20 years ago and really wanted to do it myself but never knew the ins and outs of it, and just thought it was a scam – I figure many people will be thinking the same after seeing this one.

    • Ilikequiet

      Thank you for you insight! I was completely MORTIFIED watching that show! Who needs supplies for 110 years? I was also mortified at the lady who goes dumpster diving with her pregnant friend!

    • wendy

      I think that first lady featuring is leaning towards hoarding. There are 2 of them, how much crap do you really need? I think the most realistic person featured (aside from talking to everyone in the store) was the 2nd lady I think it was, the one in Philadelphia. She had one cart and a decent amount of things. The 27 year old lady wasnt too bad either, but still, 40 boxes of pasta & 40 jars of sauce?

      • Angel

        Sorry but when Publix did their Italian Sale last spring I got 36 jars of Pasta sauce and 40 boxes of pasta. Why? We are a family of 5 I use two jars of pasta per spaghetti or lasagna dinner so if you do the math that is 18 meals. I also use the pasta for different recipes. I just ran out a couple of weeks ago. So it all lasted me about 6 months. So WHY should I pay full price for something when I can put stockpile (within reason) and save my family money??

        • Anonymous

          I feel your pain, Angel. We have seven in our family, including two growing teenage boys. When we cook pasta, it takes 3 – 4 jars. Spaghetti and sauce are two of the rare items I’ll buy in very large quantities, just because of the sheer amount it takes for our family. And no, we’re not fat or anything – we just have active, growing kids. :)

        • Amy Q.

          Lol – Angel I think you're doing right and you should keep doing what seems good for your family. I just think that Wendy needs help understanding where a family like you is coming from, so next time I would explain instead of get defensive – it's times like these where we “normal” couponers have to stick together! This show is not gonna make it easy for us!

          • Angel

            Sorry if I sounded defensive didn't mean it that way. :) I was trying to say why not save money if you can. Isn't that what couponing is all about. I am very blessed to be able to stay home with my kids and feed them very well due to couponing. Sites like this is what helps me do it. I don't want to spend hours on end tracking down all the deals so I rely on sites like this and others to help me find the deals. Keep up all the good work.

      • Sarah

        The last lady you talked about actually donated most of those items to her local food bank. She posted a video on her blog, The Krazy Coupon Lady.

    • KitKat

      Jenny – you are wonderful! Even your response to this show is full of grace!

      I watched it last night and was really disgusted. The stockpiles these people had were out of control and impossible to be consumed by their families. I did read online last night that the man with the cereal special ordered everything he bought b/c TLC asked him to do something big. But the stockpile in his house was too much.
      I left my tv on afterwards and watched Toddlers & Tiaras and felt the same way about the behavior of the girls and moms on that show as I did about the people on Extreme Couponing!


        Please don't judge all pageant parents based on what you see on TV either. Just as you would not want to be thought of as a crazy coupon lady, there are those of us who don't want to be compared to those pageant parents. My daughter does pageants! It is a fun family activity in which we make lots of new friends. I also coupon & I wouldn't want to be compared to either. Obviously it is a TV show &they show the EXTREME cases.

    • Shockhme

      Watched “Extreme Couponing” on tlc.  The first lady and the guy at the end were extreme and need to be on the show called Hoarders!  Really, who needs four years of toilet paper and 400 tooth brushes! Ha ha  The retired nurse was the only realistic shopper.  She purchased what she uses and enough until it goes on sale again.  Only one donated some of their items, the guy, but not much. The coupon ladies I know donate a lot!  Especially to our church food panty!  I have been a loyal follower of you and recommend your site constantly. Your techniques are realistic and you do good with your skills, example the coupons for troops! I am proud of my couponing skills learned from you. So thank you for great skills! We love our southern savers!

      • Sarah

        Unfortunately, like many “reality” shows, not all the facts are told. Joanie, The Krazy Coupon Lady (she has a blog and book), actually donated most of the items she purchased as well. She clarified some things that the show left out, like her “dumpster diving”.

    • Cherylorr

      I watched the show last night and I agree with others they were a little OCD!! After seeing poeple like that I now know why whenever there is something free or a good price at the store,they are always out. They really should put a limit on some things.

    • Angel

      I coupon just like the majority of the people that read this site. I thought I was extreme when I got 20 bottles of gain soap for free took me two weeks to get all of them. But I also use what I get to help out my parents that live on a fixed income and also my stockpile saved us when my husband changed jobs. Without coupons I wouldn't have been able to give my children a good Christmas. So I am all for couponing. But follow the rules, don't be rude, don't clean off shelves, etc etc. We are all trying to save money but like everything if we take it too the EXTREME then we might have a problem

    • Honeysmith

      I do think, sadly, some of the people on that show have serious psychological problems. The amounts they were buying would not be used up in 50 years! It seemed to me that only the one couple even had 1 child- I don't buy that much and I feed 7 people at my house! (And I am also sure they were pushing the envelope -the couponers, stores and TLC itself.) Some people make money or “stuff” a source of security instead of the God who supplies everything we need. I am sad for them, but also feel like I might be seen as normal, now. Because I am-just a normal mom trying to stretch the budget. And I try to be considerate of other shoppers & store personnel.

    • Meltim

      Didn't watch the show yet (it's on my DVR) but I saw a clip online. Of course people only want to see “extreme” stuff, so it seems like that's what they've shown. I found it a little ridiculous and irresponsible, too. “Store up your treasures in heaven… not on earth where rust and moth can destroy.” I couldn't believe the one couple actually had an insurance policy on their stockpile! My one question, though (somewhat unrelated to the show but it's been bugging me) is this: when we buy something that's a money-maker (through ECBs, coupons, SCRs, and/or UPs), does someone lose out in those cases? Are we taking advantage of the store and costing them money? And what about rolling ECBs so that nothing ever gets paid OOP? Who pays for this? How long can the drugstores continue to pay for my stuff with their money before it hurts them? I benefit greatly from couponing but want to do it in a responsible and ethical way and just wondered what people have to say about this. Happy New Year all!

      • Amy Q.

        Hi Meltim! To answer your question about the ECBs and other drug store deals – like manufacturer coupons, drug stores have budgeted for these “coupons” keeping in mind that certain people (like my mother) will go in, buy something at full retail price, get ECBs (or other deals) and will never use those coupons. So, in this case, knowing that drug store retail prices are higher than most grocery store or supercenter prices, can we turn your question around and ask, “Is the store taking advantage of customers by over-charging for a product? And why do they make their coupons to where the consumer has to use them in the next transaction? Is it because they know that some people will not make it back to the store within that week or two weeks to use the coupons? Why not just take that money off at the register automatically during that transaction?” The whole thing is a game (in my mind) and the winner is the one who plays it best. Good questions, and I do not fault you for asking because when I first started couponing, I asked myself these same questions. I'm glad you asked them instead of wondering!

      • Lisa B

        The thing about almost ALL retail is that the markup on most items, particularly non-food items, is really, really high–usuall 100%, often 200%, sometimes more. Most people pay full price or only a sale price without coupons (which is still usually a profit-making price for the stores). The manufacturers build projected coupon use and sales prices into their budgets and revenue projection (and sales and rebate offers are deals made between the stores and manufacturers–the stores absorb some costs but it's mostly the manufacturers), and all of these costs are built into the product's “regular” price. So in a sense, the people who are paying for your coupon use are the people who pay full price for products.

        Also, manufacturers and stores keep a close eye on the bottom line at all times, so if something is unsustainable from their standpoint they will change policies, issue fewer coupons or change the values on the coupons they issue to adjust the situation. Coupons are good for stores and manufacturers because they get us into the stores in the first place. I mean, if I couldn't get such great deals couponing I would probably do way more of my shopping at Aldi (which is where I go for staples when I need them without a sale/coupon available to me), but coupons have mad me love Harris Teeter and Kroger. I very rarely shop at CVS because they are crazy expensive, but their good deals get me in the door and every now and then I'll maybe pick up an item that's not free or I don't have a coupon for or is one of their store brands (big moneymaker for stores).

        So in the “normal” non-extreme cases of couponers who get some free or amazingly cheap stuff, in reasonable quantities, your gain is sort of built into the system, subsidized by all my friends who say “Oh, I'm just too busy to do that couponing thing you do.” Some people have more money than time …

    • Pepesme

      I watched the show last night, and it made me sick! All my friends talk about my penchant for saving money, and brag on me being the “savings diva”. I would NEVER do the things that were done by the people they selected to make this show. At least two of the five families they showed would fall into the hoarding category, in my opinion. When they announced that one of the families had enough body wash for a person for 135 years, I just started thinking about our local churches food pantry, and how they had to beg to get donations. These are the kinds of couponers that make everyone who doesn't do it, hate us. I saw person after person empty the shelves of all their stock on item after item. And then take hours to be rung up, frustrating both cashiers and other customers. I thought the cereal thing was very cool since the man special ordered it from the store, and was donating it all to his local church. I have no problem with this, and actually do it myself on a smaller level, buying items that are free or almost free, and taking them to my church's food pantry. What seemed to be missing from pretty much everyone's lives on the show was balance.

    • Jen

      I agree with you. I spend about 45min a week organizing/preparing to go shopping… thats it. My husband thought I was crazy for having 6 boxes of pasta….. until last night.. what was it.. something like 200+ boxes of pasta! Those people are battling a shopping addiction (they should have been more fit for the series that premiered after extreme couponing, “I have a strange addiction”..) they also have a problem hoarding… they need therapy.

      • Jen

        oh and… we also have to think…. they knew they were going to be on this show….. they were prob saving their coupons and planning these outragious shopping trips for this show….. I doubt that dude is buying 1100 boxes of cereal on a normal day….. or 100 candy bars……
        ya never know….. what if they are just crazy and have a problem!

    • Anything done to an extreme measure usually causes problems. The title of the show should give us an indication as to what it will be all about. I missed it but I will look for reruns in order to defend the sane couponers out there, which is most of us. Thanks for this article. I love all the resources and proof that this is the exact opposite of what we do.

    • Amy Q.

      I didnt know anything about this show, but I'll defintely be able to youtube it at some point and watch it. I did however just see a clip from the morning show about it, and it kills me to think that millions of people watched this show last night. I know that when I go into a store with all my coupons I'll eventually have someone ask me if I were on that show. Some stores already make it hard enough for people to legitimately save money for their families, now this show will peg us as over-indulgers like the people on the show. My heart is broken for couponers like me, and couponers like on the show…
      ~ Amy Q., family of 4 – 2 month old, husband, and dog

    • Mary Ellen

      I understand these people's need to coupon and think the guy who ordered
      a large supply ahead of time to donate it to the church was thoughtful and resourceful.. I don't understnad how they used so many of the same coupon. The stores here have a 3 similar item coupon limit. I really don't like the thought of just buying 1000 toothbrushes because you can get them free. I loved the lady who dumpter dived. I loved the idea that she only stocked what her family used. Just some comments, but the show was entertaining. to say the least.

      • liz

        I would imagine the stores made an exception to their coupon policy for the show. In order to have the amount of product needed, they must have discussed the upcoming sale with the couponers a few weeks ahead of time, so they'd have the stuff and the staff needed to deal with all that. I've never walked into a store and seen a staff that perfectly dressed, helpful, and friendly. I prefer a bit more individuality, the staffs were kinda stepford-y. In return for the extra work, the stores got nationwide free publicity.

    • Wlwilb3744

      I watched the show and was also shocked at all the overindulgence several of these couponers have. What shocked me the most was when the “dumpster diver's” son wanted to get a snack that was not included on her coupon list so she made him put it back, but it's okay to get 200 boxes of pasta and 40 jars of Ragu??? It was so sad. It was obvious that the only thing that mattered was getting that bottom line she wanted.

    • Tracy

      3 of the 4 people on the show had clear issues with OCD. The one man did at least donate to food banks. Now, I understand why stores have strict coupon policy. The stores may get paid for the coupons, but it would still tie up the cashier(s) and the stock person(s) for many hours because of this extreme OCD couponer.

      I have saved a lot of money in the past six months since couponing, but there is a stopping point for every person. I will stick with buying my papers for now (I will have to pass on climbing into the trash can).

      • Andrea

        I only saw the show briefly and immediately thought the same thing. I was wondering if I was watching the Hoarders show or what? I think anyone who stockpiles to such degrees must has OCD issues. Just because we can, doesn't mean we should.

    • Aimeemohler

      I watched and was disgusted by how that one guy took so much from the shelf. It is those type people who make it difficult for the rest of us to get the things we need when they are on sale. I appreciate how you teach couponing. I have saved so much this last year and am thankful for you and southernsavers!

    • Brittany

      My boyfriend recorded this show for me last night. I had not seen the previews so I didn't know what to expect. When I saw the title, I was very excited and hoped that it was going to help with more tips and advice. I was totally wrong. I don't understand what someone needs with 300+ toothbrushes and filling every room in their house. My boyfriend did not like or understand why I couponed. Over the past year or so he has come to realize that it does save us money. I agree with you, Jenny, and the others who have posted. These people are ruining couponing, and need some serious help for their underlying issues. I will continue to coupon the proper way and encourage all of my friends and family to do the same! Thanks Souther Savers!!

      • Dlasseter

        I also was excited when I saw the title, but was soon mortified when I realized what the show really portrayed.

      • Julie

        Maybe these folks need to be on the show 'Hoarders'. Didn't watch the show but won't ever. I've recommended this site to so many folks and they've been so grateful (as have I!). Thanks Jenny for all you do!

    • Andrea

      As always one good apple can ruin the bunch! I believe those of us that use your site coupon to feed our families. We are all on budgets and use this tool and coupons to make our money stretch farther and provide more for our families. I only saw clips of the show but it was a disgrace! They should be ashamed of themselves.

    • rosewood4

      Thank you so much Jenny for everything that you have taught me.

    • acg

      i watched the show and just like to know where are they getting all those coupons must be taking extra paper or from the box cause even if i went through the trash i still would not get enough for 400 tb or 100 candy bars 1000 boxes of ceral

    • Auntsonia

      I was shocked by how greedy the people were that were featured on the show. It got a lot of my friends talking about couponing on Facebook, though. They all said they wanted to start using them to save money in 2011. I sent them all to your website so they could see the right way to do it. Thanks for all you do Jenny!

    • Orngdolphin01

      Finally getting to watch the show..DVR'd it =) These people make using coupons look crazy…..afraid the stores are gonna see this and ruin couponing for us normal couponers…..THANKS for everything Jenny!!

    • Enoughsaid

      (If you do buy thousands then please don’t tell me).


    • Sandy565


      Thank you for your post. I saw the show myself and was ashamed by the large amounts of products these people were purchasing! Who else in their town can coupon with them getting 200 of the sale items? Thank you Jenny for your easy way to coupon and stay organized! (I can't have a big stockpile…too OCD and can't keep that much stuff in my house at once!)

    • Samantha White

      Although I have not seen this show yet, it undoubtedly focused on the extreme side of couponing. These so called “reality shows” pander to the lowest common denominator and exploit people with questionable mental stability and/or ethics.

      God bless you Jenny for being a shining example of how ordinary people can easily use couponing to better their lives.

      I'm glad you've turned down chances to be on television. You are a “star” to all of us who admire and appreciate the help you've freely given us.

      May the new year bring you continued success, plus good health and happiness to you and your loved ones.

      In gratitude and admiration,
      Samantha White

    • Mominator11

      Oh my goodness! I just watched a clip on youtube after seeing this post (we also don't have cable). I was shocked! I buy for 14 people (12 kids, hubby + me). I couldn't believe how much stuff the one guy had. It seemed to be a super weird example of gluttony run amuck! My rule of thumb is 1 item per person in my family. If it's a good deal on cereal, I might buy 10 to 14 boxes depending on who is home (I have college kids) but not 100. Jenny, I love what you say about sales/deals. If I miss a week, I don't sweat it because I know it will come around again. One evening, after pulling my coupons and making my list, my 19 year old son invited me out to dinner with just the two of us. There wasn't a deal on that list that was more important than the time with my son.

    • Momof3sc

      soooooooooooooooooooooooooo stupid!

      I pray NO one goes to this extreme! This is what gives couponers a bad name!

    • Jamespbenfield

      I was also turned off by the show. I did not understand have hundred of anyone product to me the one guy was hoarding all though everyhting was neat 1500 deordorandts and still searching for more seems to me to be an addiction. I know some people have yard sales and sell there stock and also some donate and give to family but at what cost.
      I use to do the coupon binder and tried to buy 6 or more papers a week and then I started noticing things would expire before I used them and I also became overwhelmed with everything. So I downsized to two papers so I can have 2 of each coupon I use the whole incert filing method. I found this way was very satisfying and I have plenty of food for my family and a little to share and donate. I feel so much better and good about it now. It made a huge difference in the way I felt about couponing and I still have lots of time for family and friends.

    • Jrodger04

      Jenny, I sure am sorry that the media likes to put a negative spin on couponing. For me, I can say it has revolutionized how I can provide for my family. I have been able to cut down on my grocery bill and my household goods bill. I also have been able to purchase things I used to consider luxery items…like shaving cream or body wash (instead of bar soap). I have been having to learn to balance the use of my time, but I grow more and more content with my couponing experiences. The success of learning to coupon this year was made possible by Southern Savers. Thank you Jenny.

    • Markandwinona

      I was very thankful for a girl who told me about this website one day. I tried it and I became addicted, but a good addiction.I in NO way stock pile, but I do atleast grab 3-6 items of one thing because I have a large family and we are on one income. Any addition I make sure I give to my other family members (mom &brother) who cannot afford the luxury of name brand bath soaps, razors, deoderants, etc.

      However, I have witnessed that people in my area go crazy with it, (hence why when I get to the store everything that is on sale at a really good price is sold out)

      These people are the ones I have a problem with and who ruin it for us who are just trying to save a $1.00. I have witnessed and heard that these people who hoard the items they are getting for pennies or free turn around and sell the items in garage sales, flea markets, or ebay to make a profit!!! I have seen it done with my own eyes.Now that is unethical and ridiculous!

      • Thekapiloffs

        Yep, they have it here. They have actually rented a buliding and call it the
        “Grocery Store Garage Sale.” Sometimes my store is sold out of items because I did not go in at midnight and beat them to the sale.

    • Jennifer

      I watched the show and thought that the only one who didn't make us couponers look really crazy was the older lady they referred to as the Coupon Diva. For the most part she was not shown to be overly extreme.

    • LauraG

      We do not have cable and I did not watch any clips of the show. After reading all comments I probably will not watch it either. I do have a question for some of you more experienced couponers though. This is my first Christmas season to coupon and we are expecting baby number three in a few weeks. I would like to buy five new stocking holders from Hobby Lobby for next year. Today they are 66% off. Do you think they will go any lower or should I go ahead a buy them today? Thanks!

      • Julie

        After Christmas sales is the best time to get those items you need for next year. I highly doubt Hobby Lobby will put them any lower. Good luck and have fun!

        • autumn

          I LOVE after Christmas sales. I can't wain for Target 75%,

      • Susan

        I've seen their fall stuff go to 80% off, but there is nothing left to be 80% off. If it's Christmas stuff at Hobby Lobby and you want it, get it now.

    • Tonya H

      I think that show bent some couponing rules just for the show. My publix and Bilo have limits of how much of a certain sale item you can buy. Usually 4 or 6. Not 40! I think that those folks knew they were doing a show so they planned out the biggest trip they could. Hopefully they don't shop that way all the time.
      This show made them look, rude and greedy. I just sat there and shook my head at how sad they were. Some of them have issues, maybe shopaholics, ocd, something! What is lacking in their lives that they have to go to such extrememes to make them feel good about themselves? All those people out there who are hungry and doing with out….and those selfish people have enough food and supplies to last for YEARS! At least one person donated food. I'm sorry but no sane person could shop on that level, maintain a job and a household.

    • Laurenzomac

      This was a bit on the obsessive side, especially the last guy (although, wow). Fortunately, he was stocking up on some of those items, like the cereal and personal beauty items for his church. That one going through the dumpsters was a bit tightly wound. Did anyone notice the show that came on afterward – “Strange Addictions?” I'm just saying….

    • Alison

      We saw the show last night and I thought it was pretty excessive and overindulgent. I kept telling my husband over and over again – “Those things are going to go on sale in 3-6 weeks. There is no need to stock up on 60 hand soaps.” The only thing it made me aware of is that I can do better, but even couponing – like everything in life – needs to be done in moderation. Thanks so much for all your advice, finds, and encouragement on this site. I recommend it to EVERYONE!

      • Ant0288

        the worse part was i told my wife why is he even stocking up on hand soap for 30 cents each… i've seen them for free before… so his theory is you buy it now then not again for 3 years, then why not wait for the actual best deal

    • wandr

      Just to let you know – The show on TLC made me want to start couponing! Not because I want to go crazy or spend 70+ hours a week doing it like the girl on the show! But because I saw that there was money to be saved and I like saving money! I do not want to create large stock piles or have completely free groceries, just saving $20-30 a week would be great. I plan on reading some of your tips for beginners and following your suggestion of starting small. I am also going to limit myself to following a couple of stores that I frequently shop at. Thank you for the site and the information provided on it. And remember “No publicity is bad publicity”, and in this case, the show may have made more couponers, not the opposite!

      • Autumn

        I hope that you do start couponing but I am afraid that many people who watched the show will not be as reasonable as you and start small. When people see how much work is involved and that they can't walk in MOST stores and just buy as many as they want of an item then they will be turned off to couponing. Not to mention that every store has their own set of rules that you have to know. You will do fine and will save $20-$30 a week easily if you follow your plan and don't get overwhelmed. It is great fun and a great way to save money once you get the hang of it.

    • CarolB

      I only got reports of the show from my daughter (football was on for pete's sake!) and it sounded nutty. Thanks so much for this site. It has changed the way I look at purchases.

    • Marlene

      I watched the 2nd half of the show so I didn't see all of it but I too felt the fellow at the end was an 'extreme' example. I have a reasonalbly stocked pantry for 2 of us but it works on the sales cycles. 4 boxes of cereal is more than enough for us for now….. But here's what I got from that show – on what planet does the store let you do that??? and why???? and aren't the manufacturers' and corporate honchos going to enforce some rules (if they haven't already)?? Some may complain about Harris Teeter's policy to only double 20 coupons per day per VIC card but I can understand why they do it and I think it's fair. You know why I love this site – because Jenny you live by example. I don't ever get the impression that you endorse this kind of fanaticism and that's what keeps me here. Nice normal couponers (at least mostly :-) Seriously if you have more body wash than you can even use in the next 3 decades it's time for an intervention ….

      • Susan

        I only caught the end of that show too. What store would let you do that? He had piles of identical coupons.

      • Beanniferj

        We had the same thought in our house – guess they were not shopping at Harris Teeter with their limit of 20 doubled coupons and 3 like coupons per order. After watching the show, I decided that I am a successful couponer, but definitely not a crazy one! I have certainly never saved $1000 an order (or had a $1000 order in the first place), but we have saved over 70% on our groceries this year, and we are pretty darn happy about that. Thanks, Jenny, for your help all year long!

    • Devin

      Well, I didn't see it! One way to save money = cutting cable! *grins*

      • Nicole

        I am right there with you Devin!!!

    • sarahinNC

      Bummer! I haven't watched the show, but thought it might give tips or such. Sounds like the hoarding show.

      I'm so grateful for Southernsavers; it has helped us to stretch our budget and be able to live on one income so that I can stay at home with our little ones, AND we have some extra to give. I NEVER buy a hundred of something! Don't have the room for it anyway.

      Couponing must be balanced with good time management for other important things in life. Like when I turn down gettng something for free (I have one already anyway), in order to spend time with our kids, or organizing our home, or something else important and relevant.

    • Just Angieb

      Jenny, I have been using your website and expertise of couponing for a year now. I turned to this “frugal lifestyle” because as many families, we are struggling financially. After seeing a financial couseler who basically said we simply just didn't make enough to cover our basic bills/finances, we knew that we had to make a change and our grocery bill was the only area available to cut down on. As a family of four, we went from a $1200.00 a month grocery and toiletry bill a month to about $700.00 a month. It has also taught me to not just save on groceries, but gifts, restaurants, etc. I am proud to use my coupons and it has made a tremendous difference in our finances. Thank you.

    • momto2boys

      So I just watched the whole show and I have to say that I think that with one exception these people are hoarders….they just choose groceries and toiletries as the things that they hoard. Some people hoard animals, antiques, old newspapers, among other things. I just can't see how they would possibly consume all of that stuff before it expired, especially the first and last ones on the show because it seemed like they were a household of only 2 unless they had about 10 kids that weren't shown!
      Did you see all the salad dressing the guy had! I mean that stuff will go bad in a year or two and I can't imagine he eats that much salad! The first lady said that she had anxiety if she couldn't get the next great deal and that she would go out in the middle of the night to get the next great deal that she found and that she spends hours on the computer searching for deals!
      Also I think that many of these stores bent the rules for the show, because I don't know of any grocery store around here that would allow such excess, especially with stacking store coupons.
      When looking for deals and coupons and grocery shopping consumes your entire life and you spend every waking moment looking for the next deal then you have issues and need help.

    • Charm4141

      I think you do a great job and I thank you for it. The ones who are obsessed need to understand that they need to learn to do things in moderation. Too much of anything is never a good thing. Thanks Jenny! : )

    • momof4

      I have to admitt sometimes i get a little crazy. There are weeks i can spend 6hrs. a week on my couponing and then theres weeks it takes e about an 1hr. Your web site is a drug for me a cheak it and my email every hr to see hats free or what just went on sale .I new to it about 4mnths. so i no some of thenew will where off soon love what you do thnaks a bunch

    • autumn

      Thank you for not doing a show like this. I live in Texas and I do not know of any store that would allow me to use that many coupons on one like item. I don't even know of a store with that many of an item in stock or cashiers and managers that would allow such.

    • Amelia

      I saw the show last night and I became excited at the possibility of saving on our grocery bill. But now I'm a bit frustrated because my town only has 3 grocery stores (one is a wal-mart) and the other 2 aren't listed on this site. :( I really want to get started with couponing and saving but I also don't live in an area where you offer a workshop. It also seems that I never use the products that go on sale/have coupons. Any and all help/advice is appreciated.

      • susansaver

        There is a list of couponing blogs by store/geographic region at becentsable(dot)net if you don't see the stores in your area listed here. HTH!

      • TheChapleigh

        A help for me was to watch the video clips Jenny has posted on beginning this process. I have not been to her presentations, but between the video clips & the comments others post on “how to get the best deal scenarios”, you can learn this very quickly. I've only been doing this now for 8 months or so, and I've easily cut my bill in half or more, learned how to buy just about anything at much less (even if it's NOT on sale, ie, using Rite Aid or Staples discounts), and I'm also now the organizer of our church pantry, having fully stocked it for a lot of hungry people — and you wouldn't necessarily know that in the stores because my carts are not overflowing. (The cashiers know me by my boxed & canned goods, but it's not excessive). I personally needed to take my time to determine what organization style would be best for my learning & organizational, started with one store to learn it's system of savings, and progressed from there. You may need to do things “the old-fashioned way” by getting the store circular on-hand or via their website BEFORE you plan your shopping trip, but the basics don't change. Put a coupon down on the sale price… like reverse-auctioning… “can I get it lower???” is the question that runs through my head ;) Be blessed!

      • Myraguff


        Get the book “Cut your Grocery Bill in Half” by Stephanie Nelson. It will teach you the principles (actually you can probably get most of the same info on this site in the tutorials) I’ve been to one workshop from a friend of mine whom I believe was trained by Jenny and you do learn a lot from them, plus being with a whole group of people learning it is GREAT. But if you don’t have access to a workshop, use this forum, and the book I mentioned and you will be just fine.

    • Momdeals

      These type of people are simply Obsessive Organized Hoarders. Pity the mom who comes behind these people trying to buy one week's supply of food and toiletries.

    • Nana007

      If you had actually watched the show, you would have seen that the guy that bought 1100 boxes of cereal donated them to his church pantry. I think this is a great thing-that he took his time to get the coupons, got the cereal for FREE and then gave it away. I would do it, too, if I knew how to get that many coupons. As for the other folks, some of them were a little extreme and didn't mention giving any away. What are you going to do with deodorant that you have stockpiled for 150 YEARS supply? That is just crazy!!!!!

    • Lauren_sheldon08

      I watched it last night! It was crazy! So many of those participants could give their “stockpile empire” to a homelss shelter as there is no need to have their amount of food stockpiles. Thankfully, the last man did support his local shelters with his extras!

      Also, they don't tell you that they probably spend about $80(at least) a week on buying coupons from clipping services. So they may spend $2.00 in the store, but in reality they are spending about $82.00+ after the cost of their clipped coupons. So they are still saving just as much as we do when we cut our bills in half…

      And I thought I had a coupon addiction!

      I would also like to think that I at least leave some food in the store for others to buy and enjoy instead of wiping out the whole pasta ailse…

    • Morgan

      Wait, that show I watched last night was about couponing?! I thought it was a show about hoarders!

    • Angela in SC

      I have to say Jenny, I am with you. It is very rude to clear the shelves by buying massive amounts of product. I do try to be realistic in my buying. I don't have a need to buy 20 of anything and when you do it robs other people,even those that just buy by sales and don't coupon. I did like they mentioned that when the guy bought all that cereal he pre-ordered.

    • Patricia

      One word in the title says it all: “extreme”. I watched it thinking it might offer tips for “real” people who want to save money, but not so. If it just showcases the fringe folks it won't ever be of any help to the rest of us new couponers. I have always used coupons, but only to a small extent compared to many of you. Now that I am retired and have more time, I plan to get more involved with it. Southern Savers seems like a good starting point to learn from. As for Extreme Couponing…I'll save that show for when I am in the mood for a dose of crazy!

    • Ashleigh in AL

      Most importantly don't buy what you aren't going to use! That is being rude to other couponers and wasteful!. Nothing frustrates me more than going to publix and seeing people clear the shelves and not leaving the sale items for other people who need to come in and buy.

    • Cndy

      That wasn't couponing. That was hoarding!

    • Buster243

      I find it interesting that people worry about what people think. It's your life …live it. I caught on the this site, and did learn of it's benefit. I spend 30 mins at Sunday breakfast cutting coupons I know our family will use and about 2 hours Tues/ Wed hunting and printing coupons online (ink is also something I coupon.. Office Depot/ Max $10 off $20) I don't consider myself or my wife on the fringe, nor do I care what someone else thinks. I know our family has saved several hundreds of dollars over the year and now, always buy name brand products. Best part for me, I rarely go to Walmart. This Christmas I shopped online using tips from SS's site….didn't face the mall's or braved standing in line in the cold. Got everything I wanted and more (2 towels sets for under $3..made faces smile when they opened the presents) My bills for $60 to $80 of grocery items are normally less than $20. I've had cashiers ask us how we found these deals. We've always shared your site with everyone, but knowing that not everyone can see the benefits. I understand what you do and how you've turned Southern Savers into a money making venture. Thanks again for all you do. Keep your site simple and easy to use for the rest of us. Buster

    • Epcpooh

      Thank you so much for this. I thought the people on the show were portrayed as crazies. I follow your approach, balanced couponing. I do not want to have a stockpile of 140 boxes of pasta or buy 100s of candy bars just because I can. The key is balance, not obsession for a good deal. Thank you so much for all you do for us.

    • Scrooge

      Just read Comments on “Krazy Coupon Lady” website and it truly is mind boggling how people on there are all gung ho about buying 100+ of one item. Someone needs an intervention!!!

    • Sarah

      Thank you for this website, I visit it almost everyday to see what deals are going on. It is a blessing and I appreciate all the time, energy, and work into it.

    • Lewanne

      Amen! I enjoyed the show- but it should have been another hoarding show. Why do you need some much salad dressing. It will go out of date and then I would like to know what they do with it. I feel that if you are giving the opportunity to buy 20 bottles of mustard for 8 cents each then do it….but share with friends and family that don't coupon.
      It was nice of the man to donate the cereal to his church food pantry, but he had plenty of other stuff he could have donated as well.
      Now- stock up don't get me wrong….but most people know that I share. I won't let my friend buy something that I have 10 at home.
      Enjoy the shopping high of saving 50%, 55%, 60%…..then donate the items you don't use or have too many of to a local food pantry!

    • Ze2Be

      I had to admire the one black lady who bought only what she needed and did not do heavy stockpiling, she understands the concept of “Extreme Couponing”.

      • Morgan

        Agreed. Joyce was the only one who didn't belong on a show for hoarders. And she seemed genuinely interested in helping others save money.

    • Catie48

      I watched the program and saw many inconsistancies in it:

      They had TONS of salad dressing – tooks lots of shelf space and they could not possibly eat that much w/o it going out of expiration.

      They stockpiled in a garage in Kentucky with the salad dressings etc on an outside wall (change in temps will not help prolong the expiration)

      I think one of them was shopping at Kroger, and I am almost certain I could not buy that much (they balk at over 5 coupons) of one item and have the system take the coupon!

      Why didn't they think higher of the cashier? I have had both a checker and a bagger in the same trip take a break ringing my coupons – after that incident I usually go in smaller trips to not tire the cashier or make them at all hesitate to have me in their aisle.

      I agree, Jenny, it gave us who shop sensibly, stockpiling what we will actually use or give to charity a pretty much bad rap!

    • twirlgirl

      As others have noted, the coverage portrayed the couponers as hoarders and crazies. I think that couponers should run for Congress. We understand the value of a dollar.

    • Wendy

      I didn't see the show but I want to thank Jenny for her integrity. I am glad that you decided not to do a show which portrays couponers as crazy. I admire the fact that you are always coming up with ways to give back to charities through your website. I have followed some other deal sites and it doesn't take long to figure out if they are strictly in it for their own gain.

    • Dattolimom

      I love this site. It has shown me ways of saving money. I agree with most of you that the show should have been called hoarders not extreme couponing. I don't think the second person was to bad with her couponing except for maybe all the deodorant. I will always use this site and share with others about this site, I know the store I shop at doesn't double all my coupons just on the first item I purchase so that was a little crazy.

    • Mari

      I have cable, I was actually up when the show was on.. and I refused to watch it. I had gleaned all I needed to know just from commercials and the small amount of advertising they did. To me that show was nothing more than hoarding food and toiletries. I think people need to think realistically.. what do you need so many things for? Even if you are buying the coupons (is that even being frugal?) and then donating the stuff, you have to realize your time away from family and friends is at a cost. I value my personal time, which limited as it is, and although I LOVE couponing.. I refuse to let it rule my life. I have never cleared a shelf in my life (other than taking the last one) and think if you can't share deals with others that is a selfish and unGodly way to be. No others may not agree with me, and that is ok. But I am content with making sure my family and friends have the best deals available. Let me crawl back into my life, surrounded by loved ones and family, and not participate in this massive silly new addiction… because this show is going to do nothing but create hoarders and massive buyers clearning shelves in our stores. I will just sit back and watch them wear themselves out, as they always do. This is just not a good representation of what couponers are really like. I am also not one for 'selling' your buys at swapmeets/yard sales.. Thank you for all you have done for me Jenny… your wisdom and sweetness has changed my life…and that of my family.. God bless you~

    • Robert J Soule

      I didn't see the special, but now I want to. Does anyone remember when TLC used to be initials for”the Learning Channel”? They stopped being educational and became more of an entertainment channel a few years back when “Trading Spaces” got popular. I'm disappointed.

    • Hall0061

      It is obvious from watching the show that the whole thing was “Staged”. First of all where I live in Tennessee, you are REAL lucky to find 20 or less of any items on the shelf at any given time!!! Muchless 200 or 300 of anything. Secondly, when I go shopping people are very quick to throw a limit on you if you pick up more than 2 or 3 of something….so go figure. It is apparent that everything they bought was preordered and stocked on the shelves, as well as the store was practically cleared out for this show. Yeah, they had to leave a few folks in there to have an audience, but when I go to Kroger it is a madhouse….no matter what time of day it is. I just thought that their method was distasteful and tacky. I am all about a good deal but what they were doing is absurd. I have 5 children of my own and could use alot of products in bulk but for us it is only about taking what you need……not being greedy and rude. I really believe that these people featured on the show have lost it!! Going and digging in dumpsters and taking your kid with you???? She made a comment that they found a coupon for pullups while digging in a dumpster….first of all he has to be like 3 or so. Maybe if she would lay off the coupons some, her son can get potty trained. He should have already been like a year ago. Also, going around the neighborhood and essentially begging for peoples coupons…..if you cannot support your habit yourself…..don't do it! I think it is safe to say that this show has lit a fire under all of us that try to do this the right way. Just remember when you have to drive 40 minutes to get to the closest Kroger like I do to shop and when you get there and the shelves are empty and you cannot get anything you need……it is because of people like the ones they put on this program.

      • debbie

        No problem with asking people to save their coupons for you, I wish people would instead of throwing them away. For crying out loud all they would have to do is to bring them to church on Sunday morning with them. Plus, with her personality, she can get away with it.

        • Libby

          I can't believe that she took the coupons out of someone's newspaper before they even opened it!!!!!!

    • Sheryldavis1670

      Amen Jenny, I support every word of your message 100%. I've been couponing for almost a year now and I've learned a lot from Southern Savers, its the website for me. I liked, and learned some things to practice, from the black lady close to the end of the TLC show. She is my hero in the coupon world. :) The rest were going overboard with it.

    • sweetmarieinmississippi

      I watched the show last night with my hubby and 5 kids. It was entertaining to say the least. now remember folks that these people are the EXTREME cases. sometimes it takes something like this to get the publics attention. I started couponing after seeing one of these shows. I do admit there must be underlying addictions to go to this extreme-the one lady said “It's such a rush”. gambling and drugs also give a “rush”. Here i was feeling kind of hoardish about my 12 tubes of toothpaste in my drawer(remember 5 kids, 2 adults and 3 bathrooms). Let's do our job now and gather up all those bewildered people who watched the show and would LLOOVVEE to only spend $6.00 for 4 carts of groceries. Lets show them the proper way of moderation and giving and leaving some for the next guy.

    • mominfl

      I am realatively new at this and at first I thought it was really too hard, but once I had saved up enough coupon books with the date labeled on them I found that it was not that much effort to save a significant amount of money. I don't always shop this way, but when I do I am so very glad I did. It has helped out our family this year since I cut back to part-time work. My mom has started to give me her coupons once she removes the few she wants so now I get double the coupons without spending more and that helps even more!

    • Lynn

      very well said! :)

    • K Livingood

      I loved the show. The couponers/hoarders that were profiled were undoubtedly obsessed with couponing. However, these extremists bring attention and a heightened awareness to couponing that catches our interest whether we are disgusted, amused or motivated. I applaud the show and the individuals with callused hands from clipping coupons. Clip Away!

    • Jolley1

      I have to admit I enjoyed the show and considered it a learning experience. Even though I disagree with the amounts they were purchasing. I'm new to coupon clipping (thanks to my wonderful sister Christy) and have only been doing it for a couple of months. But I'm really excited at the amount of money I've been able to save. And I think the show demonstrated how we can build up supplies that could last us for months or years to come for almost nothing. Which I found somewhat reassuring considering the tough economic times we face. Don't get me wrong, I would never have a hundred of anything at my house. I typically will only purchase a maximum of 4 of any given item. And with the hard times I've seen friends and family members go through over the last couple of years it's nice to know that I may be able to help by giving them the things they need. I also have a son that lives away and is going to college so I can give him and his roommates several months worth of supplies that I know they won't have to waste their money on. I think the key is to use the knowledge/coupons for good and in moderation. I buy one paper a week and rely on the additional coupons that come in the mail or get thrown onto my driveway. I also trade coupons with my sister because there are always things we could get for free but would never use. My pantry has never had so much food in it and I'm really thankful for all the effort Jenny has put into this site to help us save money! Just remember that they called the show “Extreme Couponing” for a reason. That's not who most of us are.

    • Jolley1

      BTW…I'm a guy who is proud to clip coupons!

    • TJ

      I got into couponing accidently, helping out a friend. Yes I am addicted, but I've found that I spend as much time as I want on this little hobby. If my week is busy and they usually are then I may spend an hour, if I have a little extra time then maybe two hours. I do like to get the freebies but if I have more that six of any one item, I give it away. I give to my extended family and to friends in need. They really appreciate a $25 bag of groceries I have paid $2 for. We also have a food bank where I work so free rice, pasta, deordorant etc. goes there. It just depends on the deals as to what I have on hand to give away. I am still amazed every week at what I can get for free or almost free. I was a walmart shopper, I used to spend about $200 a week on groceries, now I spend about $60 -$70 a week and could really spend less but I like to share my deals with those who don't have the time or those who really need the stuff. Couponing has taught me how to shop the sales, something I never did before.

      I don't have a big binder, I do not cut and file coupons, I file the whole insert by date and cut what I need each week while I'm making my list. I buy six papers a week. Yes, I do miss on close out deals because I only buy in the store what I have clipped my coupons for. I personally can live with that because I have a full time job and family.

      I used to feel the urgency to get every deal, but with time that passed. The show on TLC made us look CrAzY!!!!

    • Sweetmarieinmississippi

      I knoe everyone is talking about the show but I have a question. I have a large family and 5-6 coupons per item seems to work. Can I print 2 coupons per “computer” at my house-wireless router. Or do I take my laptop next door to their wireless router and print a second set there. Any ideas on getting wider variety of coupons. Here in Mississippi we don't get them all. thanks, Marie

      • oneplustwins

        Most sites will only let you print two coupons per computer, no matter where you are. It reads the isp. I have two desktops and a laptop, so I print 6 coupons (if I need them) for my 5 person family. Also maybe you can do it at work? I work from home, hence my 2 computers.

        • sweetmarieinmississippi

          thanks for the info. I'm a stay-at-home mom so no work computer. So you're saying that it's not the “comcast” wireless address but the actual computer? great, I'll use my husband and daughters laptop with my desktop to get my 5-6 coupons.thanks again, Marie

      • Ashley

        It's per computer and not per network. I print from my laptop and sometimes from my desktop if it's something that I really need. Hope that helps!

        • sweeetmarieinmississippi

          thanks for the info. When the new months coupons come out I will at least use my husbands laptop and my desktop to get 4 of each. thanks again, marie

    • Megtag

      I DVRed the show because I missed it last night and watched it this morning. That show really has me fuming! How dare they place Hoarders and Obsessed people whose addictions are couponing and protray them as all couponers. Those people have issues that they need treatment for. You know it is more than trying to help your family when you feel the need to purchase insurance on your stockpile!

      I coupon to help my family in these hard economic times and absolutely adore being able to help someone else do the same. That is what couponing is all about, helping your family and others. Thank you Jenny for all you do to help our families, you truly are a blessing!

    • Lindsey

      Well, I guess I finally realized the reason I can never find the 1 or 2 items I need to use my coupons ;] I save atleast 60% on my grocery bill everytime I use coupons and I never spend more than a couple hours a week total clipping coupons. It is truly sad to me that people who could really use saving the extra money from couponing have probably been discouraged from doing so because of some dumb tv show. Too bad they couldn't have turned it into something positive or beneficial to viewers.

    • mal4

      does any body no? is it better to use your coupons firstand then your store card or store card first and then your coupons

      • oneplustwins

        It depends on what you're doing. If you're using the penny coupon from Publix, you need to have $10 in purchases, so use that coupon first so the other coupons don't take your total down to less than $10. I haven't started doing the drugstores yet, so maybe someone else can address that.

      • Bobbi

        At my Kroger they double coupons up to $.50, but only if they scan your store card first. So I always scan my store card before the coupons.

    • Jewel74

      I started couponing in June & I admit, I'm addicted!!! BUT, I am not obsessed. I could NOT believe the way they portrayed couponers on this show & was disgusted by the way these people hoard things unto themselves. If they were giving it away, it would be fine, but most were not. I just don't see how they can justify this. Why do you need to buy over 100 toothbrushes at a time? You only need to change your toothbrush every 6 months – do you know how long it would take to use all those toothbrushes – RIDICULOUS!!!!! Thank you Jenny for countering this & keeping it all in perspective. :)

    • Mrs Bogues

      That show was ridiculous! I couldnt believe the amount of items these folks were stockpiling. Surely there is a food bank or homeless shelter nearby that would love to receive a donation or two! There is no need to buy ALL of the items that are on sale. Save a few for others. Or…if you feel compelled to get everything… donate some items!!!!!

    • Reneeonc

      thank you Jennie. I too feel the same as you. I have to admit that starting couponing in July I didn't really think the sales would just continue on. They have, and I've made couponing an easy, short time in my life to help me save consistently 70-80% at the grocery store every week. I no longer go to every store, and if I miss a sale to do something in my life- no worries- the sales will continue.
      thanks so much for your site

    • Tisha

      This only solidifies the reason this is by far my favorite couponing site! I refer people here all of the time because of it. I couldn't agree more on your points and we should be just as frugal with our TIME as our money. That show is obviously for the drama of it all and not what couponing is meant to be. I refuse to watch it. The stockpiling that they've advertised is HOARDING and those people need help.

    • Emily

      Jenny, you are gonna get hundreds of comments on this one!!! I hope you read them all–I have read them all so far and will continue to read them! I love to coupon!!! I tend to have lots of somethings, like toothpaste, shampoo, and conditioner, etc. I was at church talking about couponing one day and some of the ladies asked if I would help them get started…. I sent them to this website with great pride that Jenny is my “Friend” (although we have never met). I am not a hoarder, I love taking the “freebie basket” to the free medical clinic and teaching my children the joy of giving. This whole concept goes back to the Bible and teaching men to fish. Jenny you have so kindly taught us to provide for our families and those around us. And just another note…Thank you for your Christmas message. My children asked “Does Ms. Jenny love Baby Jesus?” thanks for the answer!!!!!

    • Harrik1986

      I didn't watch the Extreme Couponing show, and from reading the comments posted, I'm glad I didn't. Jenny's approach to couponing has always been tempered with moderation. Isn't that the key to happiness with anything we have or do? One thing that quickly impressed me when I started couponing at Southern Savers is the integrity aspect she taught. Don't use expired coupons….don't use a coupon for an item not purchased….think of the next shopper and save some for them…. don't buy more than you will use in the sale cycle….. and share with others if you do find you have a surplus. You know … do unto others….. I want others to enjoy the same couponing experience that I have come to enjoy. If I lose sight of this, then I have simply failed at being a good shopper… and a good neighbor.

    • Wanda

      I have to confess, the show renewed my interest in couponing. Without a doubt, these people could just as easily have been featured on Hoarders. There is something deeper happening there, but the concept is brilliant. If you could special order something, and set it aside for a food bank, or even teach the families that rely the food banks how to coupon themselves that would be an amazing service.
      I think the people featured on the show need to realize that everything has a shelf-life and “non-parishable” doesn't mean forever. I just saw a lot of waste. The one woman who said that it would be her legacy, and she would will her stockpile to family needs to realize that what she is willing to them is a mess that they will most likely donate to a food bank, or toss in the trash the moment she is in the ground. Seriously…digging through the trash with your son and pregnant friend… that is a couple of very misguided minds at work there.

    • Shirley

      I am not sure if this will reach anyone, but I wanted to give you some background info about the show on here. BTW, I am in NO way affiliated with the show nor do I know the people who were featured on it, nor am I an extreme couponer.

      I saw interview videos in response to the purchases that were featured on the show, and the program actually ASKED them to plan a huge, big, over the top purchase so the program can wow the audience with a huge amount of savings. So, these purchases were NOT the norm for them and they were only done specially for the show and because they were asked by the producers to do so. On top of which, most of the items bought were all donated to their local food bank.

      These people are extreme couponers, yes, and some of them may have hoarding issues, yes, but to judge them so harshly? I don't think the Lord would throw them into hell for it, so why should we? Have you even bothered to find out more about them? I have seen their blogs before the show and they have ALWAYS advocated on their blogs that you should NOT clear the shelves, do NOT get what you don't need, do NOT waste what you get, DONATE what you won't use, and ALWAYS be ethical about couponing.

      I hope that everyone remembers that what you see on TV tend to be more exaggerated than real life because they only have a limited period of time to showcase their subject and they will tend to make it more 'exciting' so they can capture your attention and keep you watching, so I ask you to please, at the very least, be objective, find out the other side of the story first before you come to an opinion and pass judgment.

      Thank you for reading.

      • guest

        I don't think the man with a zillion bottles of salad dressing or the lady in the beginning with 400 boxes of pasta were planning to donate any of that. She had pasta lying on the floor of her house because she had no where else to store it. The first lady especially had issues because she said she experienced anxiety if she couldn't get a deal or if her coupon made the register beep.

        • Littlebit

          About the first lady..I know her..She does donate many of her items to her family, friends and others that need help. As a matter of fact ALL of the pasta except for a very few boxes have already been given away. TLC told them to go EXTREME and she did. She was hoodwinked by TLC and when she she realized it (when the register froze up) she was visibly upset. The last guy was TAPED before hers..so the producers knew there was a 500 item limit..
          You know its easy to sit and judge others..esp behind a computer screen but to those that are mouthing her..She doesn't shop like that on a daily basis and does help others that need it

          • Shirleywillia3

            She admitted herself that she will cancel plans and leave family time to go to the store to get a deal, that sounds like it is a problem. I told my husband that these people were asked by the show to plan a big trip,to make them look obsessive, it was pretty obvious. It did however help my husband understand more about the savings with coupons and he even offered to clean us a space for storage.

      • Drcarot

        The last guy had over 100 bottles of salad dressing with a 6 month shelf life in his house. Is he honestly going to use it before it goes bad? I understand that the show hyped up the shopping trip that was on TV, but if you noticed, the African American woman had a reasonable order and they didn't bother to go into her home to show her “stockpile” because it was probably not grotesque enough to warrant air time. Even the young lady that did the dumpster diving seemed to have a more realistic stockpile. I am certainly not one to cast stones, but I can tell you from an objective point of view that if someone saw only the first vignette or the last, they would definitely have a very bad taste in their mouth because those two families do have hoarding issues. To buy over 100 boxes of pasta and put it all in your home is gluttony and if memory serves me correct, that is one of the 7 deadly sins. I don't judge others lest I be judged, but I can tell the difference between hype for a show and an abnormal behavior pattern by whether or not someone has changed the layout of their home to make room for hundreds of tooth brushes or sticks of deodorant. If these people had a 12 week stockpile (maybe a hair more for durable goods like toilet paper) there would be no uproar. However to brag about a 40 year supply of toilet paper tells me there is no intention to donate. I didn't see a gun (proverbial or otherwise) to the shopper's head when she did that. At any rate, all we can do is control ourselves and our own buying habits and live our lives according to God's word. If we do that and continue to coupon in a positive light, we will make far more widespread and positive impact than even the negativity that seems to have surrounded this show.

        • Momto4crazykiddos

          Last winter (2009), my local food store was selling boxes of store-brand macaroni and cheese and spaghetti for 10 cents a box. The limit was 10 at a time for each, and my husband and I both went back and forth during the week to end up with close to 100 boxes of macaroni and cheese, and 150 of spaghetti. We have 4 kids, plus my mother lives with us, so 7 mouths to feed 3x a day really adds up. We used the last box of macaroni about a month ago and I have 8 boxes of spaghetti left. I buy enough to last without anything going bad, and when I see I have enough shampoo or toothpaste, I stop, until it gets low and it's time to shop again.

          I have an Aunt that extreme coupons/hoards and my uncle has a hard time getting her to stop, telling her they already have plenty of this or that at home, and she ends up getting mad at him in the store. He tries his best to use things up before they spoil, but it's just the two of them. I look at her as an example of what NOT to do.

    • Bawade2000

      The guy bought 1100 boxes of cereal to donate. He special ordered it so he wouldn't clear off shelves. I don't see anything wrong with that.

    • Julie

      Very well said Jenny! I agree with the others, that show was ridiculous. And I was shocked at the amount of stuff they have stockpiled. Do you really need enough deoderant to last for 150 years??? And since when does a typical family go through 40 boxes of pasta in a 6-12 week sales cycle? I am all for stockpiling but good grief. Most couponers I know are a lot more polite and will not clear out the shelves like these folks do. I feel like it gives all couponers a bad name…

    • Courtneybradshaw

      I watched it (sort of) and it actually jazzed me to get started again. I would hope that most people would see something like that and understand that this show was “extreme.” I appreciate what you do for those of us who are unwilling/unable to spend that kind of time!

    • Wewabraswell

      After watching that show, my kids no longer think I'm crazy for couponing. They said wow mom, you just buy enough for what we need…those people are nuts. Thanks TLC.

    • Loudorlong

      I watched the show last night and agree with you. I was saddened by the one lady the show chose to report on who goes way past extreme. That portion of the show did make couponers look like a bunch of crazy hoarders with an addiction to shopping. Not all couponers are like her, but I do think she needs help because it's taking over her entire house and life. I just started using coupons a couple of months ago and have a small stock pile. Only buy what I know my family will use in a few weeks time and that's it. If I have extra, I have gladly given it away to family and friends. It's a wonderful feeling to be able to bless others with things that would normally be expensive for them to buy, but by being a strategic shopper, I'm able to get it for next to nothing and give it away.

      • Brittany

        Whats sad is that the lady that you are discussing doesn't even have children! She had that much stuff and it was just her and her husband! It was ridiculous…

    • Booketh1011

      Thanks, Jenny, for your wise words and all of your hard work!

    • Jennifer

      Keep doing what you are doing to help the average person save money. I don't blame you for feeling pressure to do a show like that. Those shows are for entertainment mostly and shock factor. I don't watch tv either, but I love Southern Savers and will say I have saved lots of money on all of the special offers you post! Thanks, Jennifer

      • Rjfranklin

        compared to the couponers on the show all of us normal couponers would be boring haha Did they ever say the amount of money they spend weekly? Just to pay tax on the amount of merchandise purchased would be more than I want to spend. Best way to save money is to put in the bank not to hoard too much in the guest bedroom.

    • Drcarot

      Well said, and good perspective. Thanks for your thoughts. I certainly concur.

    • guest

      TLC has turned into the new Jerry Springer show…with the lineup of shows lately I'm beginning to think they are exploiting people.
      Shows about hoarding, toddler beauty pageants, multiple births, strange addictions, polygamous families, etc etc. I think that they are about to lose me as a viewer….

      • Fallaya

        They have already lost me as a viewer.

      • Julia

        They ARE exploiting people! My husband and I have been saying that for a while now! Everything they do is sensationalized and they seem to thrive on a “circus side show” approach to programming.

      • Connie in AL

        You know, TLC should change their name. It is NO LONGER The Learning Channel.

      • Wanda

        TLC did not create these habits in people. They only bring them to light. Sure they might ask them to do something over the top, but rational peopls would still say no, or at the very least do what the last man did by ordering in advance, and donating.
        I've worked as a 911 dispatcher, and these habits are all more common than most would think. We have whole systems to help people like this, and those systems are over flowing.
        I think it does educate people. Maybe they won't feel so alone. Maybe they will see how nuts it is in someone else. Maybe it will serve as a warning for their support system to intervene sooner. Maybe a viewer will figure out how to get the help they need.
        Comparing TCL to Jerry Springer is a bit extream too, wouldn't you agree?

        • Lorettaj58

          The extra items that I get using coupons go to the troops in Iraq,Africa and Afghanistan. Dont forget that these people are far from home and they only get what is avaliable on base.

    • SCshopper

      I watched the show and it motivated me to get back on track with being serious about couponing. I certainly think that there are issues with some people that become obsessed with stock piling, but I wouldn't mind buying 5 or 10 of an item…if I had that many coupons. Which leads to my question….Is it more cost efficient to purchase extra Sunday papers? How do you all come up with extras of a really good coupon? What are these companies that the people on the show paid to send them coupons? Anyone use those? I'm new, so some of this is still confusing to me. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

      • Lasmith9454

        IMHO: Say I buy 5 papers at $11. Then I have lots of unclipped q's I will never use. I take the same $11 or less and “Cherry-pick” the deals and order specific clipped q's for the sales. They arrive in an envie ready to go- check the mail and then head to the store. My 1st order was $4.25 for $44 in q's specific to my sales and wants.

        • SCshopper

          What are some of the sites where you can order coupons? Also, do you pay for overnight shipping? Sales don't last all that long around here to wait for snail mail. Our shelves would be empty!! Suggestions?

          • Rjfranklin

            Rainchecks when possible usually make a better deal later.

          • guest

            Jenny lists the sales on Tues night that start on Wed for the grocery ads, I look over the lists Tues night or early Wed morning and see if there's anything I need extra of, then I order. Typically I have my coupons on Fri, or Sat at the latest. Sometimes it might take until Mon. but I've never had to miss a sale because my coupons didn't get here in time.

        • deb

          great post, from which service do you order?

        • Fullhouse

          There are many clipping services, I use couponsandthingsbydede dot com; yes I pay for shipping, and she has quick service. IF I need additional coupons for a sale, I order the first day of the sale, and my coupons arrive before the sale ends. I have also purchased off of ebay as well, but only when dede was out of a coupon I needed. I purchase all my inserts from her, I don't buy the paper at all. Our area doesn't get good coupons at all in the paper, so for me ordering is the best way to go. I typically buy 2 of each insert, however, if there's several coupons that I know I will use and need to stock up on, then I will order an extra or two.

          • tgs_1960

            I tried to look up that website that you said you use, however it was not valid, can you double check what you referenced in your post?

            • Fullhouse

              sorry, it's couponsthingsbydede~no “and” in the adress.

    • akellyinva

      Thanks for the post, Jenny. It proves you have a good mind for moderation rather than extreme-ism. It's my opinion that the first lady has a problem. No one needs that many candy bars! I thought $70 was excessive for coupons for that week,too, and it's just the 2 of them. As for the other 3, I thought they did great. In my opinion, if you want to have stores for what could possibly come down the road, go for it. Surprisingly they portrayed the man very well by allowing the “donate the extra” philosophy to come through. The one lady “you haven't been broke enough” showed another side to couponers which I liked. As for Joanie, I don't think the pregnant friend was a wise choice for the show. And the producers made her out to be worse than she probably is. Her family has lived thru a “drought” so to stockpile for 3 months and beyond is a wise choice. If your income is unstable, 6 weeks won't cut it. To each his own, but I thought the show was typical TV showing a few upsides and downs.

    • Jessica

      Very well put. This show was a disgrace to those who try and do the right thing in couponing to save money for their families. There is no sense in buying 60 of one product, leave some for the rest of us!

      • Hemda

        amen that is what I was thinking what store lets you buy their entire stock most of ours have limits on items so everyone canenjoy the deal

    • prowell

      Your blog has enabled me to give more to my elderly mother, while working full time. I just use your posts to get items that I would normally buy but might miss if it were not for your reminders. Plus you help me match up the coupons that I have, so easily, that it's no where near an obsession; it's actually a joy to know I've saved. I also don't have to feel stressed when I'm helping stock my mother's shelves. She's in congestive heart failure now and if not for the money I've saved on day to day items I would have not been able to help her as much as she needed me to help. I thank you Southern Savers and don't care if i don't see you on TV but I would sure miss your Wednesday posts for grocery sales/coupon matchups as well as all the other ways you help me save!

    • Peggy

      I watched the show and agree that these families were not the typical example of coupon users….most of us are seeking a way to reduce our spending on needed items for our families….I appreciate your site and it has helped me to save hundreds of dollars over the last year and to also be able to donate when I would not otherwise have the money to do so…There is absolutely no reason to stockpile to that extreme…Let's not loose site of the real reason that we go through the process and that is to feed our families at the very lowest cost..

    • Unicorn31777

      I have to say, 2x's this year I bought 100 boxes of ceral at a time. When I did the 2nd time I was almost out from the first time. My kids and husband always have a big bowl just about every morning so ceral was always getting bought. When you can save over $4.00 a box and it cost you under $1.00, why not. Just as long as you are going to use it before it goes bad. I stock pile pasta and sauce too. But I use it too. And when it gets low I stock up. I stock up more than 6 weeks worth but no more than 3 months worth. I think it's ok to stock pile more than the normal but only as long as you are going to use it before it goes bad.

    • Lorrose57

      I am with you Jenny..that said.. I am small potatoes compared to those people… my hubby watched it in amazement and we were wondering about the other things that these people could be doing with their time.. volunteering…caring for invalids.. not just buying things they will never use.. none of them said that they sold the stuff at yard sales or flea markets.. like most of the people in my area do with their stuff…
      I have had many a great couponing days.. I have gone from $150 to $15 many a time.. but I use most of it, or donate or put it in my yardsale.. I have a small closet and a small walk in closet that is about 1/3 full of a stockpile.. but like I said to begin with.. I am small potatoes and they call me the coupon lady at my local BiLo…hoarders are ridiculous..that is why there is nothing left in the WAGS and CVS when a good sale starts…

    • Tracey0714

      With a family of six, the second largest bill is that at the grocery store and that is with coupons. I wish I could find a coupon to pay the house payment!!!

    • Hemda

      Thanks so much for posting this I had so many friends comment on it and even questioned myself I am in this to help my family not drive them crazy if it is not fun than why do it.. I am extremely blessed by your site and appreciate your honesty THANKS!

      • Sarcasticangel_82

        It is fun…but clearly the first lady on the show wasnt having fun w/it…she could not have been happy like that!

    • For those of you who thought that this one hour documentary wasn't a fair portrayal of couponing, I hope you feel the same way about documentaries and news reports about education like “Waiting for Superman.” Sorry, I had to go there…

      I just watched it on my DVR…wow…

    • Agh092362

      I enjoy your website and didn't see the show last night. Several people I work with mentioned a show was coming on but nobody remembered when. Gathering from all the comments, it sounds interesting! I have bought several of some items, but with two kids in college, it surely helps keep them stocked up with shampoo, deodorant and detergent! I also was able to fill their stockings and my two younger step childrens stockings at Christmas for very little out of pocket cost. They all got lots of shampoo, deodorant, body wash, dish detergent, gum and so on that will be used. Thanks for all your help with this site!

      • Em

        Better to get practical things that they will use than to fill stockings with candy or toys they won’t use more than once!

    • Lynnlammon

      I was a good coupon person-then these shows came along-and the stores in my area started talking and looking at me like I was a criminal-and no I was not buying 1000 items-only one or two. After being humiliated to tears in Target I have not used many coupons and I do not shop in Target anymore.

      • Tawanda

        What shows? EC just came out last night. I use my coupons with integrity and I've also developed a great relationship with the casheirs at my local stores. Hold your head up high and continue to shop with coupons wherever you like.

      • Em

        I’m sure if Target Corp. knew what had happened, they would be begging you to give them another chance. Usually when there is a situation like that it’s an employee who isn’t following policy, has a chip on their shoulder, or doesn’t understand that the store gets reimbursed for the coupons. Businesses don’t accept coupons out of the goodness of their hearts, they run the numbers and budget for it, long before we ever see the sales flyers.

    • Jennylovessummertime

      Jenny – thank you so much for posting this and with your usual 'intelligence and grace', everything was well said. I was disgusted by the short clip of the 1100 boxes of cereal guy, and it was obvious from the background of his home that he normally does not donate these items. I don't understand why people were so impressed with this, either. He just orders the coupons, and waits for the sale, or vice versa. Those people are the reason the shelves are empty for those of us who buy 2-6 of an item. AND I've learned that many of these are the people at flea markets who are selling non-perishables and cleaning products. I've never bought them, because you wonder where they came from. Now I'm glad.

      • Sparklecat2009

        I noticed that the last time I went to the flea market in Raleigh. Made me a little angry.

      • momto2boys

        Yep you can regularly find all the free or really cheap coupon deals for sale at the local flea market around here too. And while they “say” they are donating most of it and maybe these particular people are there are many out there who do it for profit and sheer addiction. Check ebay sometime for some of the things we get for free and see what you find!

    • Shannon

      Jenny, I have been following you for about two years now and you have been such a blessing to me and my family. I don't have to decide between food and new clothes for my kids anymore. We get what we need and we have money that stretches to the end of the month. Thanks for all you do!

    • Aguilar2003

      What I can't seem to figure out is how in the world they got all those items for next to nothing? I frequently shop at Krogers and we are limited to 3 items per tripling of coupons. I don't usually separate items unless its something I'm stocking up on but that is rare. I just make a few more trips back but my question is how are they tripling coupons for more than three items?

      • I'm sure the stores made a special deal with the TV company for the show.

    • Wyattabbymom

      didn't watch the show or even know about it, but just went and read the description on the link and OMG those people are crazy. Who needs those numbers 300 toothbrushes seriously! 40 boxes of pasta?! really, pasta is of of my number one stock up item cause we eat so much of it and I have like 6 boxes in my pantry:)

      Those people give us normal coupon crazy people a bad name. I love my coupons but gosh I spend maybe 2-3hrs a wk working on my list organizing and gathering my coupons. I also only shop at Publix regularly and do CVS and Target a couple times a month maybe.

    • Sarcasticangel_82

      I just watched it a little bit ago…the first lady need serious help! Some of it was neat but a lot of it was just crazy. I probably spend a few hours a week on cupons but I cant imagine taking a day off from work to do it!

    • Neseh67

      I had a conversation about this at lunch today. I think that it is ridiculous to try to show such extreme cases on national television that will only distort what those of us that are trying to SURVIVE are doing! As I explained to my lunch companion, I do purchase more of and item than I might need at that MOMENT…if it is on sale. However, I never purchase items just because I have a coupon for it. There are people in this world that become consumed by all sorts of things. All we can do is pray for them and try to be an example of what couponing is supposed to be!

    • Juli

      I post/read on a site that two of the couponers profiled post on (Amanda ~ the first lady and “Mr Coupon”) and am FB friends with the “Krazy Koupon Lady” (as probably a lot of you are…)

      What I have read that they said were misconceptions from the show:

      (1) Kroger knew everything they were coming to buy and how many of what they were getting. Where it looked like they cleared the shelves, they did NOT. The stores were ready for them. No doubt they were so agreeable because it made their stores look good.

      (2) TLC requested that they come up with the biggest, most extreme transaction they could. Amanda (the first one) said that she has never done a transaction like this one before, and never uses more than 100 coupons at a time (yes, still a lot, but nothing compared to the 1000+ it showed her using last night.)

      (3) Both Amanda and the Krazy Koupon Lady donated the majority of what they bought to area shelters/food banks. They taped this taking place, but did not show it. Amanda donated everything that she bought with the exception of the cat food and the Yakisobi noodles (which went to her brother in law).

      (4) A lot of things were taken out of context…where Amanda said something along the lines of “my toilet paper brings me joy” the rest of the sentence was something like “when I see how little comes out of my pocket!” But we didn't see this.

      I think that TLC did everything they could to show couponers in a bad light. I read so many terrible things last night by horrified people on FB…what they don't realize is that this is NOT the norm (even for those profiled!).

      Anyway, just a few things I have read today that were posted by those profiled. :)

      • sjhm

        Thanks, Juli, for the explanation and details that we could have missed! (Or did thanks to TLC's editing.)

        I felt a little silly the day I bought 8 Chapsticks at Kroger… but I ended up giving several as supplements to Christmas gifts. I can't imagine buying 100 candy bars or 1,100 boxes of cereal.

        • Wanda

          Am I the only one that thought buying 100 FREE candy bars would be great! I've secretly always wanted to be “that house” on Halloween. We don't eat candy in our house, but I would selfishly love to spoil the neighbor kids at Halloween. Or even Christmas, or Easter. LOL. Sorry. Guess it is just me.

    • AuburnKimme

      I did not see the show. But thanks to YOU my shopping at Publix is way easier!!! And cheaper. Thank you for all you do!!!!

    • Debbie Patterson

      I have just started following your website. I've decided to think of a thing I want to buy
      that in these times would be considered splurging. ie a new piece of furniture or new tile for my bathroom. I plan to keep track of what I save with coupons, not what I save per things like b1g1. Just the coupon savings. The cash will be put aside until I have enough for that purchase. It will be like a double bonus. “Look what my effort got me”

    • Tess

      Jenny –

      I did watch the full, sickening version of the TLC show last night and feel that most people watching will view these extremists as having an obsession. What bothers me about the individuals who buy thousands of items is two-fold. First, it depletes the supply for those who shop in a reasonable way. Secondly, the stores that double those coupons will have to take a deeper hit than they would normally have budgeted for. Just had another thought. Isn't this hoarding? And will these products be fresh when they are consumed? Maybe it's time to change the name of your workshop :)

    • Julie

      Thanks for sharing this. I did see the show, and I felt embarrassed! Things like this is why “Coupon Shoppers” have bad reputations. I was appalled at the greed and obsession displayed. No one needs enough toilet paper for the next 150 years, but there are families that could use it for a week. Why not share the wealth? I felt sorry for the people that were consumed by it. That's no way to live.
      I did appreciate in the end, the man that donated to the food bank at his church.

      • carrie

        I'm also glad he donated the 1,100 boxes of cereal. At least that many families was helped. Hopefully he donates to his local food bank frequently. Some people donate time, expertise, money to charities and if this is his was of donating then wonderful (couponing has enabled me to donate to my local food bank as well though not anywhere close to that same degree)! It is both sad and amusing that I had told my daughter when we were watching it that some of the people shown would probably be on the show “Hoarders” in the future and it sounds as if other commenters had similar thoughts.

        • Glacilux

          His website says that they donated 6 to 7 thousand dollars worth of product to the local food pantry in that trip, so however much that was out of the total is the amount donated. His website is weusecoupons.com, and two of the people featured use that website, including him, so that is one of the sites. The others are: http://thekrazycouponlady.com, Amanda Ostrowski doesn’t seem to have a site, but her ideas are on FrugalTV, and the woman who was a single mother has been on lots of news shows talking about her food pantry work, though I can’t find her website. Please take the time to look at the people before you decide who they are and what they do when off camera(of in the parts edited out to make for good ratings because they look more extreme).

    • Michael

      The show was pathetic, wasting all that time for just coupons and their obsessed self. Do you really need 150 years of deodorant. Just because an item is on sale, does not mean you have to buy it!

      I think people to the extreme like Nathan just has a severe case of OCD and needs to have that put in check with meds. I wonder if you can get a coupon for medication!

      • momto2boys

        Yep, I think you can get coupons for medication….that would be right up his alley!

    • Dee Dee

      Didn't watch the show, but have always followed your “rules of engagement” for lack of a better term and have never been led astray. Coupon within the time you have, buy what you need, and donate extras with an open heart.
      Thanks for all you do!!! Because if you didn't, my husband and 5 children would not live as well as we do!

    • Nancybgood14

      I love couponing. And because of your teachings i am way faster collecting Qs and in the stores getting the items i want. This year I have been doing more rebates. I put the rebates in our emergency fund. I see us owning our home in 3 years and being debt free. And we do splurge here and there but in budget. And I love that your site is not just about food but well rounded on life needs and fun. even my sister is now Q. Anyways Thank you and to all the people on this site for sharing there deal so i can learn.

    • Melinda

      I didn't see the entire show but I did see the previews and was appalled at the stock pile by these greedy people. I have used your technics for almost 2 years now and I do buy more than a 6 week supply for my family. However, my family donates at least one huge box of food and sometimes 3 or 4 boxes every week to someone in need or to the local food bank. It makes me sad that people see the need to stockpile so much for themselves when there are so many in need. I am thankful that the Publix employees where I shop know that I donate the majority of my purchases. It would make me feel really bad if anyone at my store thought I was one of those crazy people on that show. I agree with so many comments below that shows like this give honest couponers a bad reputation. Thanks Jenny for all you do and I hope you, your family and all the Southern Savers followers have a wonderful new year!

    • Saveandcut


      Thanks for what you do. I am a volunteer TV personality in a niche community (Asian) and before this TLC show, I thought of doing couponing feature to show how it helps many people. With your site's help and use of coupons, I was able to save money for family (we have 3 children), my handicapped parents who aren't receiving any food stamp assistance or Medicaid, a brother who is a single father of 3 girls (just found a job after 3 months), and my other families who
      are also affected by the economy, and donated to Ronald McDonald house through my Church. Keep doing what you do because you help greatly! God bless you and Happy New Year to you and all of my coupon friends out here!!!!

    • matthew's mommy

      This wasn't couponing, it's hoarding. I hope these people get the help they need.

    • Connie in AL

      I watched that show and was disgusted with how these people would just clean out the shelves so many different items!! It is so rude to be so self-indulgent that you leave nothing for others. I know that it is stressed here NOT to do that and to just to be respectful of others. I know that you also stress that there are ways to make people hate us and ways to help make a much better impression and relationship within the store. I appreciate you and I appreciate your honesty and giving frame of mind.

    • Wheetie789

      Amen sister!!!

    • sunflowergurl

      To me, these people have serious OCD's!!! If they have that much food they need to donate it since they got it for free anyways and it WILL expire! At least that guy gave the cereal to his church foodbank…kudos to him!

      • Juli

        The first 2 also donated 99% of what they bought to a foodbank, but the show chose not to show that. The last one may have donated cereal, but he also sells his stockpile, which I personally don't agree with.

        • Kerry72nc

          I couldn't believe they were a couple with all that stuff. It was ridiculous. I'm surprised the locals stores they shop accept so many coupons in one trip. My HT only doubles 20 p/d. I just think it's sad they hoard like that and others try to get the bargain but I'm sure the shelves are empty. I couldn't help to notice none of them looked healthy except the one couple with a small child. Their stockpile was considerably less too. I was overwhelmed at all the plastic bags used. I'm still shaking about it…lol Luckily, one of the shoppers used her bags plus it gave her a bag credit. It's upsetting that couponing was portrayed so badly.

        • Guest

          If they donated most of what they bought, then they wouldn't have such HUGE stockpiles of food that will spoil before they could possibly use it. I agree with others that it is an addiction pure and simple.

          • Glacilux

            It isn't an addiction. You can have a huge stockpile in your house and still be giving most of it away. I know people who will get large stockpiles, and when the need arises, they will let people “shop” from their stockpile like it was a grocery store. I'm absolutely horrified to see people acting like this over people the majority have never met, talked to, or even visited their blogs. The show was about ratings, not reality. The Nightline show was the same way. The man who bought all the jello donated it, along with a lot of other things to the food pantry,and he got so much flack for having all the jello out, because nobody bothered to look. Find the websites of the people who were on the show. Read what they posted, then decide what is true or not.

            • Em

              I grew up in a rural area and I can remember getting laughed at for stocking up on one of the rare trips to the city. We didn't use coupons, but we sure shopped sales. We had to, because the small shops nearby we so expensive and really didn't have much selection. I don't have a big stock pile, but am constantly giving stuff away to friends, family, or even acting as an unofficial spokesperson for the brand: “I hadn't tried it before, but it was on such a good deal I bought a couple. You should try it too…”

    • SunnyK

      I am watching it now, and all I can think is DONATE. So sad to not think of others. Thank you Jenny for this well spoken response.

    • jd

      one of the rewards of couponing is being able to give to friends who are in need, as well as the food banks and community kitchens. We just gave an entire box of food to a mother with 4 children and no dad in the house. What a blessing!! Without a site like this and Jenny's hard work, this would not be possible. Thanks for all you do and being devoted to this cause!!

      • T Otts

        I have to agree, I have donated to several people and every time I talk to a friend for the first time about couponing, I make them a care package of razors, shampoo, conditioner, toothbrushes, toothpaste etc that I have gotten for free, just to “show” them what they can do rather easily. I spend a few hours a week with all the “prep” work but then I shop at primarily 3 stores sometimes 4 but I also do ALL the shopping for one of my friends as well. You can spend as much or as little time as you want it doesn't have to be a full-time job. I also thank you Jenny you have been an awesome help to me and countless others who are trying to make ends meet in this economy. God Bless you and Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

    • Cassie

      I was actually kind of shocked to hear only one of those people mention that they donate SOME of the items. I found a little sickening though because although I don't nearly get as much as those people but I always try to give back to the community…why does a small family need over 1,000 packs of toilet paper?!! Thanks Jenny, I really appreciated your response and I certainly approach couponing in a very similar manner to you!

    • momto2boys

      While these people say they donated most of what they bought for the show…their personal stockpiles in their house/garages was out of control! While they personally may have donated what they bought…there are a lot of people like them out there who do not donate and in fact profit from it. They resell at yardsales, flea markets, ebay etc….which I think is wrong and probably illegal somehow or another. Just my opinion…

      • Jackson Anita M

        Just a few friendly thoughts…I thought that when you bought something (which then makes you the owner) that it is your right to sell it (you legally obtained it). What if a Mom did that to make money to feed her children so she could stay home with them, you know, a business…would you then say she is doing something illegal? I think that is just being savvy. I do not condone hoarding and that is a serious problem, but that is another issue I think.

        • momto2boys

          It is just my opinion that it shouldn't be resold and I think a lot of folks will agree. If said person is legally obtaining goods and then reporting all earned money as income (which I bet a lot don't) to the IRS then that is their right to do so…and it is also my right to not buy it from them and to have my opinion that it is wrong.

          • FYI people are allowed to resell things. It's perfectly legal to have garage sales, sell on ebay and craigslist, or re-sale shops. Though you could not pay me to buy groceries from someone at a yard sale. But it's not immoral or illegal. Just a bit creepy. In my opinion anyway.

            • momto2boys

              I'm not saying that selling a few extra things in a yard sale is wrong….I'm saying that running a grocery store out of your garage is wrong. I wouldn't buy it either…in fact I rarely go to yard sales because it grosses me out to think where things have been sometimes, so I stick to clearance racks :). Although I do buy used books at the goodwill every now and then….

        • GA mom

          In order to sell food, you need a license to doso. Plain and simple.. if you buy things with the sole purpose to resell you need report your earnings to the IRS. You have a job, a job that provides money. That money needs to be reported to the irs.. plain and simple. Now if you go through your kids items, your kitchen theme changes and you have yardsale it is entirely different. You didn't purchase those things with the entire intention being to resale.. you used them for a moment, and either outgrew or outused them. IF you purchase something with the sole intention of resale, you need to think of it as a business, and report it to the IRS. Plain and simple.

        • Guest

          I think it is unethical to manufacturers plain and simple. It is cheating them out of the revenue they need to stay afloat from their REAL customers–stores who actually PURCHASE their products for wholesale. These people are the reason companies like P&G are adding limitation wording to their coupons. Let's look at the Vick's Sinex coupon for $4 off. Let's say the average RV is $7. That would make the wholesale price (what the store pays the mfr) $3.50. Then, the manufacturer turns around and pays the store where you redeemed the coupon $4. They LOSE $.50 on that sale. Not a bad deal if their coupons are being used reasonably, but when people are PURCHASING 100 (or 1000) of them to use on a sale to get something for free, then it adds up.

          • Em

            Industry document actually indicate that manufacturers are well aware of the segment of customers that they classify as coupon “enthusiasts”, and factor them into the equation before ever releasing coupons. Another reason they arrange sales where they don't make much money, or even lose some, is because they want people to use their products, and become attached enough to buy them again next time. Stores offer “money on next purchase” because they want you to commit to their chain, and it works! It even works on extreme couponers, once they get comfortable with a store, they go back again and again. There really aren't any losers here.

            PS Extreme couponers are real customers, and as someone who has worked retail for a long time I can tell you, they add more to the bottom line than the people you would describe as “real customers.” That's all stores really care about.

      • GA mom

        In order to sell food, you need a license to doso. Plain and simple.. if you buy things with the sole purpose to resell you need report your earnings to the IRS. You have a job, a job that provides money. That money needs to be reported to the irs.. plain and simple. Now if you go through your kids items, your kitchen theme changes and you have yardsale it is entirely different. You didn't purchase those things with the entire intention being to resale.. you used them for a moment, and either outgrew or outused them. IF you purchase something with the sole intention of resale, you need to think of it as a business, and report it to the IRS. Plain and simple.

        • momto2boys

          Well said….thank you!

    • Tasha

      I didn't get to watch the show yet; it's on my DVR. I read a synopsis of the stories portrayed, and it made me sick. Sounded to me like an episode of Hoarders: Couponing Edition. I love to get a good deal as much as the next person, and especially love to get free items. I don't clear shelves, (unless there's only one or two, that's not my fault,) and I do share a lot of things with my in-laws, friends, and various charities.

      I'm just recovering from a breakdown that caused my house, garage and shed to be full of junk. I live with Clinical Major Depression, have to take meds all the time. Pregnancy causes my body to go nuts, and we have to try new meds until we find a good one. Last pregnancy, it took a while. Then I ended up with a horrible case of PPD. When I finally started feeling myself again, it was overwhelming to me to try to dig my way out. Finally got a diagnosis of Adult ADD, and the medication for that is allowing me to finally have the determination to fix my life. There is NO WAY that I'm going to allow this new lifestyle to junk it up again. No matter how “good” the stuff is, if it causes strife in your life, it's not GOOD STUFF! I could easily have become that lady that was filling her third room of stuff, but I just refuse to let this become a bad thing.

      Oh yeah, and we decided to get more healthy in our eating. I find it's a bit harder to find the really cheap and free healthy stuff; most of the free stuff tends to be the over-processed stuff that we're cutting back on. So for now, I'm using my savings on things that I get in the drugstores to be able to afford healthier foods for my family. Isn't that the point of saving? So you can spend it on something more important?

      • kjmiller

        Thanks for sharing Tasha and for the helpful insight. Sounds like you've had a long journey, glad things seem better!! God bless and have a great new year.

    • Raspbery

      I think this show made it obvious that as couponers, we have to realistically set limits on ourselves and not go overboard on stocking up everything. Focusing on stocking up an item or two is okay (for me, a wall of toilet paper is a dream come true, but probably will never realize that!), but to stock up 2-2.5 rooms or a garage full of stuff is *overboard* and slightly sad. I would guess that most of the food items will go bad before they can use them all! I hope the first lady featured finds some freedom in giving away some of her stockpile…or selling it! She seemed really burdened by her need to coupon and save money.

      Anyway, it didn't scare me away from couponing, but made me realize that I can do better than I have been.

      • Em

        The “Krazy Coupon Lady” with the garage full of stuff actually had the experience of losing almost everything when her husband lost his job and she couldn't get work with a newborn on her hip. They had to sell their house and move in with parents to avoid bankruptcy. When they were so broke her husband had to join the military just so they could have an income, she fed her family from her stockpile for months because there was almost no money coming in. So when she talks about living for a year on her stockpile, she's done it in the past from necessity.

        Several of the extreme couponers have come from places of hardship like that, and I for one don't care to judge. Especially since most talk about the importance of sharing and donating.

    • Erin

      As I watched, I was so thankful not to shop in the same stores as the folks featured on the show…..I'm glad moms and dads around here (Raleigh) seem to have a spirit of sharing!!!!

    • Cookie

      Wow. Know the people you condemn and walk in their shoes…..I coupon, I donate, and I sell. I coupon to help my family have a better life. If I can save here, I'll have more to spend there or save for a rainy day. I donate often and regularly to share my blessings and help lighten the load for someone else. I sold both at a yard sale and at a flea market. In North Carolina we pay tax on the original price of the item (in my county 2% healthful food, 8% everything else) and my local stores teach their employees to check coupons for any overage. Do the math – it costs cash money when I coupon. My items are not FREE. The cash I have received on the two occasions I sold my excess stock will help me to pay the taxes on future coupon deals. I do not have a business and if you ask my husband I lose money because of the time I invest in couponing. He is convinced that I do not save enough to cover minimun wage let alone the cost of gas and newspapers, however we depend on the savings weekly. Thank you for all you do to make my life easier and thank you for giving me the tools to help others. I personnally have received several letters as a direct result of the deals I have found on your website. I wish there was a way for me to repay you.

    • liz

      i been couponing 16 /or more years my grand had a child we had to help support it so one day it were my turn to buy formular at my purchase out came a coupon for your next trip Thank GOD cause from then on we were able to feed that baby so every friday night just be fore the trash were empty we would go get coupons the baggers started saving them for us when i first started some were only 10 cent people would say 10cent make a dollar

      • guest

        Love it, I remember the days of .10 coupons!

    • Jrjlprev1

      yeah i watched the show and thought those people had serious mental problems; couponing isn't about hoarding food; its about buying what you need and using your coupons to save you money! Why would you buy so much stuff just because you could a coupon and save money? If you need it and will use it in a few months; great; but to stockpile to that extent is crazy and useless and actually not necessary. To spend each day all day devoted to getting coupons is absurd! Get a life!!!

    • Doodles_ga

      I have gone from spending $120 a week to $50 thanks to you! Dont let em get to ya, your site is amazing! Happy New Year!

      • B_boop40

        I usually save $100 every two weeks. I spend less than $100 now compared to well over $200. The people that hourd the stuff I do agree have to have some type of issues. I love couponing have gotten a co worker and daughter doing it and we don't hourd or do anything than what we are a loud to do at our Publix. Happy New Year

    • I watched the show and was so sad. That woman who bought a gazillion boxes of pasta and 100 giant candy bars for herself. At first I assumed she surely must be donating all that extra stuff. Why would you need 40 years worth of toilet paper or deoderant? Such a waste. If I could figure out the coupon lifestyle, I would totally get a thrill from donating a bunch of extra stuff to the dozens of food pantries in my area. But to keep them in room after room of your house…why? I didn't think the show was bad but it very much needed to be followed up by that hoarders intervention show.

    • Meg Pruitt

      I am worried that the stores will start teaming up with the manufacturers, or vice versa, to avoid a mass influx a new couponers due to this show. I wish it had not aired because I feel a change will come because of it, and not a good change.

    • Lattinhome

      I am new to couponing and am trying to set a budget for a family of 6 all teens & adults. Does anyone have any input on where my grocery budget should be? What about personal and household items. I really want to set a budget this year that I can stick with but have NO idea where to start it at. I have no clue what we have been spending…if we wanted it we bought it. But due to lower income this year I need to do this. So what is a reasonable amount?

      • Seast31

        We have a family of 6 including 4 teenagers to feed and I normally can get everything we need with $150/wk or less.

        • thelattingirl

          Is that just groceries? Or is it groceries and personal products and household? Thank you for replying :-)

          • guest

            We are down to being a family of 2 because our adult kids moved out in August (19 yo to college and 21 yo to a job) but we were on a budget similar to Seast31–abt $25 “per person” per week for both groceries and personal products.
            I think it only worked because I had a decent stockpile before the kids became teens BUT it has been a “treasure trove” for them because they got to shop the stockpile for free when they moved out (because I was wondering how was going to use that stuff up) and now we are freely trading stuff–ex dd is a total brand-a-holic when it comes to particular shampoos and feminine hygiene items BUT she purchases other brands where there is a limit and trades w/ her brother or w/ me for the brands she wants

          • guest

            You might want to consider getting more than one customer card–the “rule” is one per household BUT I admit to violating that when we were a household of 3 “legally adult people” (and one almost adult teen) because in theory we could have been 3 separate households. For the pharmacy deals you really need more than 1 card to keep up w/ personal care products when you have teens. I had 2 cards, older kid got his own card when he moved out, younger got my “secondary” when she moved out, husband and I are using my primary only now.

      • yardsale_shopper

        start by writing down everything you all buy for one week i know this is a pain but you will have a clear picture of what you each are spending your money on. let the kids know their future spending ability depends on how well they keep track. each convenience store coffee, pkg of gum and fast food purchase as well as groceries.

        take those records and sort them by catagory – groceries and paper goods, (i always put pet food here), then fast food, snacks, supplies, ect., then add them up.

        OMG i spent 1.79 everyday on cappuchino at the swifty store.

        in addition to knowing how much you spend each week on groceries, you will identify expenses that you may be able to eliminate by changing some habits.

    • CouponPro

      In order to pull off the type of savings they managed in Extreme Couponing on TLC there was actually illegal/fraudulent activity, including gang cutting (Nathan Engels claimed he subscribed to this on the episode) and violating “limit 1 per customer” or other similar verbiage present on many coupons. Violators of these types of activities are actually punishable by law. You can find more information from the CIC on this at http://cents-off.com/.

      • Hwright

        I thought this too. I know that every time I go to use a coupon there are all these rules…so I dont bother anymore. No one double coupons anymore either…at least hard to find in Cali…but yes I agree that they had to be violating the terms of the coupon

    • CouponMommyto2

      Happy New Year! Can we stop for a moment and reconsider bashing these people. TLC's show was a success: you all hated Girl #1 and her candy bars, you probably thought the Krazy Koupon Lady was cute, fashionable and more reasonable, but shame on her for being in that dumpster, Older Lady #3 was probably reasonable and “more like me,” and the guy at the end appalled you by raking in all those toothbrushes, but redeemed himself by donating all the cereal, right? That is just what they were going for.

      See it for what it is—RATINGS. These couponers are extreme, yes, but if you read their blogs, you will find out that TLC ASKED them to come up with the most EXTREME coupon purchase they could create. And the stores were prepared for it, as they had pre-ordered all the supplies and stocked them nicely in bins and on the shelves. They also removed their coupon limits and had big smiles on their faces as they worked. You'll also see they donated almost ALL of their purchases DURING the show, but TLC chose to edit that part out.

      Let's give them a break. They did choose to go on the show and do as they were asked, but they had no say in the editing part, so really, we are only getting part of the story.

      Like most of you, I do hope this has no negative impact on the way we coupon. Maybe there will be a positive outcome to this show, like more people become interested and the manufacturers put some high value coupons out there to get newbies hooked! LOL…hey, we can dream!

    • Boomer3145

      The funniest thing about the show was they used a Krogers which have strict limit two like coupons here in Raleigh NC. I have been couponing for 40+ years, since my Mom “dumped” it on me at 13. I am addicted but I love it, don't hoard & the show just fuels the reasoning behind those who don't coupon. I share my finds as we all do. All of us could easily figure out what items they concentrated on to get it for free. Hey, how did the tax disappear? No overages here.

      • All the grocery stores we're much more “coupon friendly” for the show because they don't want to look bad on national television. I know my store would have flipped if I went to purchase 1,000 butterfingers with 1,000 coupons.

      • guest

        Hey you and I have been couponing for a similar time (and for similar reasons)
        Not all states charge sales tax on food and some only charge sales tax on “actual $” (not sure if the manufacturers are charged sales tax on coupons spent)
        I have been very successful w/ asking store managers to accept more than the usual number of coupons for a nfp that had officially expressed a particular need (and have asked the nfp that benefited to send a note of thanks to the store which has helped immensely “the next time” because the managers remember that the product actually DID go to the intended recipient so they are more likely to allow leniacy in the future)

    • glowplug

      I'd like to offer my opinion on the show- as a person who has never used a coupon before. First off, I'm a 35 year old husband and father of 1 from Lexington who does all the shopping and cooking. My wife and have professional, full time jobs and are completely comfortable financially. However, we do understand the value of paying less (I don't think of using coupons as 'saving money'- unless it's on a staple in your home) for groceries and have entertained the idea of couponing for quite a while.

      That said, we did watch the TLC show (twice) and were also appalled at the amount of hoarding these people are doing. However, I like to think we have a little common sense. The show clearly demonstrated the extreme side of couponing that is rare and nonsensical, and in no way did we ever think these people represented the average couponer who simply wants to take advantage of lower price offers. I've been to almost every grocery store in town plenty of times and have never seen a couponer with more than two shopping carts full (totally understandable since I've filled two before with no coupons). I have though, seen lots of people with the huge coupon binders and the stack of clipped paper at the register, but they are never an inconvenience as even the newbie cashiers are old pros at scanning coupons by now.

      After reading these comments, I sense unnecessary defensiveness. From the perspective of this non-couponer, the show was exactly what it was: entertainment if not information. Common sensical people already know about coupons- even if they didn't know the extent of the 'savings' (lack of a better word). The TLC show may very well have opened peoples eyes in a positive way- mine included. Simply put, had I not watched the show, no way I'd be on this website taking notes and no way I'd be going to a coupon seminar Wednesday night. Thanks for the website. I look forward to learning a lot from you guys.

      • Rbneubauer

        I too liked the show. Yes TLC showed the extreme version of couponing and I do me extreme version. However I would never go to that extreme, but I must admit that it put a fire under my backside to start using coupons. I have a good friend and a mother that use coupons and save a lot of money, but I never really understood how to do even though they tried to explain and show me, but after watching the show something clicked inside my head. I for one would never go to that extreme for one I don't have the space and it is just not right to buy that much at one time so that others can have some too. I do not wish to have a huge stockpile, but I would like to have enough so that my family of 4 can have pleantly to eat between sales and just in case we get snowed in and can't get out to get food. Like I said the show was good, but you need to take it for what it was a show for our entertainment. And the people on the show where couponing beyond the extreme hince the name of the show Extreme Couponing.

    • I will say that this show just ticked me off, and I knew it would before I even watched it. I am an avid couponer and have been for years, I don't do it as an “addiction” I do it as a must to help my family so we can eat decently on our budget.

      The first woman in the show made me SO mad, she had a room FULL of products that will either expire or she will never use. And yes she may have gotten them “free” but she paid tax on everything, and if it's something she wont use then in my opinion she wasted money. And the fact that she got so mad at the store (really?!) because she had 1,000 coupons for each product and 9 buggies full really made me see red, it was not at all the stores fault she decided to go overboard on shopping and I think it's utterly rediculous. (Not to mention I think her husband was a woose for letting her take over their lives like that, he should be a man and put a stop to that crazy addiction).

      I won't go into the rest, there's not enough comment space for me to rant about how mad that show made me. BUT I will say, that people like THAT are why stores are making it so difficult for me to buy 4 of one item to “stock up” and feed my family.

    • Yanknrebel

      WOW, thanks. Yes, I too watched that TLC show and am very overwhelmed. I have a hubby and 5 children. Thought 2 are grown and out of the house, anyway I can save money is a great help. I went and bought 2 papers yesterday for the coupons, but I am still not sure how to use them. I know how the basic coupon works, but do not understand how you layer coupons to get things virtually or nearly free?

    • Stephanie

      I agree that the way these people were portrayed was not that great, but if TLC edited out some stuff for ratings, there is nothing anyone can do about it now. We only saw what TLC wanted to be seen. I have been couponing and rebating avidly for the past 15 years, and there is absolutely NO WAY that would ever happen with me. Yes, I stockpile, but only enough to get me through until the next sale, since sales run in cycles. I have also shared and donated a lot of the things I have gotten free or very cheap with coupons. One of the things that really irked me was the stores allowing this massive amount of coupons at one time. Get real, people! It doesn't work that way in REAL LIFE! Stores have LIMITS, and to show this on national television, they are making it look like this is a normal practice, when it is NOT! I don't care who made what deal with whom in order for this to transpire….it is the same as “lying” to me. How many crazy people are going to go out and try this, only to be stopped cold with the limits that are in place, then get angry because a national show showed them how to do it? GREED is in abundance, here. Greed from TLC for the way they portrayed couponing for ratings, and greed from those who do this then resell at a huge profit. I can't tell you how many times I could not even get ONE of a sale item because greedy people cleared the shelves on the first day of the sale. It is disgusting, but it won't make me stop couponing. I always follow the rules and ettiquette when I use coupons, and I wish more people did. The bad apples are the ones who will end up spoiling the whole barrel for the rest of us, in the end. Why do you think most stores won't accept internet printables? It is due to greedy people using massive numbers of fraudulent coupons they printed from the internet. They are really thieves, when you think about it. It is the same as using counterfeit money…and those who use coupons for products in the same “family” of products when the coupon was intended for something else…thieves!!! Just because it will scan, doesn't make it right…if it says $1/1 pkg of diapers (just an example), it is meant for use on diapers, not to get wipes free just because it is in the same grouping for coupon coding…Shame on a lot of these people for a lot of illegal things they do…(and no, I was not referring to the ones on the show…I am talking in general…)

    • Janet6453

      The show didn't come across negative to me at all!! It actually made me want to get on here at 11pm and try to find where to buy bulk coupons!!

    • donut

      Hi there, I myself agree that the show was the extreme, however, I have always had the urge to coupon just never really taken the time. I was happy to see that the cereal was going to the food bank, sad to see that the same man could not also donate the toothbrushes, soap, etc…

      • guest

        Double like but that was not a given option!

    • DJ

      So this is why my 85 year old mother usually can't use her coupons. She lives on a very limited fixed income and the shelves are usually empty of the items she is shopping for and now I know why. We've even been in line behind someone buying 20 of one of the items she wants that are on sale and she has a coupon for. Do these people ever feel bad that they have deprived others that have spent time clipping coupons for their own personal use while others are hoarding?

    • akellyinva

      I have to wonder after reading a lot of comments: If every one of us e-mailed or called TLC, would they show us “the rest of the story”?? They must've done a lot of editing and made their participants look really bad. I think TLC should be ashamed and also shamed into showing all the good points of these couponers and what happened to the items purchased. Shame, shame, shame for causing such an uproar in the couponing community.

    • Melissa

      I don't understand how these people were able to use hundreds of coupons to purchase hundreds of items. Don't the stores have a limit on the number of deals per person? And also a limit on the number of coupons per transaction?

      • guest

        I've not used hundreds of coupons HOWEVER when my kids were in elementary school we had a locally owned and operated store that was running a BOGO for an item, one deal to a customer, I had 20 coupons for AND the item was one on the “wish list” for the school's science lab. I went in an explained to the manager that I hoped to purchase as many of the items as I could for the school using the q's I had and would do so in separate transactions if necessary. He allowed me to get all 20 in 1 transaction. I have done similar when buying for a food bank.