Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Why did I start doing this whole blogging/couponing business anyway?

I was just reading over at our friend, Kristen's, Couponing to Disney site - she admitted that she started the blog because she wanted to earn Swag Bucks. She evaluated what she was good at and what people would read about, so she came up with the idea of telling people how she paid for her Disney trip by using coupons and it evolved from there and is now one of my favorite, daily, go-to sites.

So why did I start doing this? Well.... I was inspired by other bloggers and the following that they get. I wanted to give my friends and family a "one stop shop" place that they could check every day to find the best deals for them. I want to teach people how to save money because, not only are we in a recession, but we are in a recession due to the over spending of Americans and the need to feel like we have to keep up with every one else, have everything together and people are paying for it!

When I sat back and evaluated my blog and myself, I knew that I had skills that I could teach people. When my husband and I were married for less than a year (we're going on 10 this year) we did ok for 23 year olds financially, but then when my hubby hurt his back and couldn't work, we had to take a look at his career choice. Here he was 23 years old, young, healthy and his back hurt so bad that he couldn't touch his feet to tie his shoes! We stepped back and looked at the men that he was training under and they had been doing the profession their whole lives and my hubby was their back up while they were out on surgeries and leaves for the pain that they were in - the same pain my hubby was already beginning to experience! He wanted kids really bad and did not want to be that guy that was so tired from the physical demands of his job that he could not even play with his kids when he got home. So, he went to school... the deal was that he was going to go, then I would go and it would be a long road, but worthwhile in the end. That was right around the time 9-11 happened. And about six months after 9-11, I got laid off from my job. So - now what?? I came home that day from work and told him that I guess we're living off of Top Ramen because I am going to school too. At this point, he doesn't have any income and I am drawing unemployement.

Our budget was nill - I mean so small that finally we had to go to the food bank on Tuesdays to collect food and then with coupons and smart shopping I supplemented the rest of our groceries. I learned that if you made menus every week based on what you had already in the fridge, pantry and freezer that you could save a lot of money - even without coupons. I shopped the grocery store ads, I learned to cook, freeze, garden, can and how to make use of left overs. I learned all of this and now I cannot wait to pass it on to any one that wants to listen to me! I want us to become a nation of people that do things again. I want us to not lose the skills that our grandmothers taught us like canning, freezing and growing. They stretched their food and they were thinner and healthier!!! I don't think that using coupons and budgeting always means that you must buy processed foods, but I do think that sometimes they are really easy and nice to have in the pantry at times. :-)

So, back to the original question... why did I start this blog? I started it because after being diagnosed with sever endometriosis, PCOS and having a hysterectomy recommended at 30 years old - I never thought I would get pregnant and I never thought that I would quit my career to "waste my time and talents" staying at home with my child (children?). But then I realized that my degree and my career do not define me and my talents and that if I share my talents and skills with people that I will be successful, regardless of how much money it makes. And, hey, if it does make money - that's even better! And even more reason to keep going and teaching and passing on my skills so that people can have their own story as to why they had to start saving money. Maybe it's because you wanted to stay at home, or there was a lay off in your family, or you wanted to go to school, on vacation, or pay for your kids college! Or maybe just the recession in general has made you want to step back a little and re-evaluate your spending... for whatever reason. I'm glad you are here and I'm so glad you are reading my blog. I hope that I can teach you something or you can relate to some of the things that I have been through myself.

Please let me know if you ever have any qeustions, want to share your own story or want to hear about specific topics!

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