Friday, April 25, 2008

Pinching Pennies

As gas and milk prices soar, we are trying to cut our budget as much as we can. I've found a few websites that are helping our family with this effort.

While I am a newbie to the whole coupon thing and still have a ton to learn, it really is exciting to see how much money we save when I take time to shop sales and combine those sales with coupons. We're getting necessary items for a fraction of the cost.

Today I'm excited about paperback swap. We devour books around here and our book expentitures are pretty high. So, this week I decided to check out the paperback swap option. Here's my experience thus far...

It is free to join. You post ten books to get started. By posting ten books, you get two credits. That means you can browse through their books and order two books.

Our oldest has been desperately wanting the next book in a series she is reading, but I kept saying "no". Lo and behold, the book was in the system and I pressed the order button and it's on it's way!! She's pumped.

Of the books I posted, someone has already requested three of my books. This is the "hard" part, the actual work. We printed off two sheets of paper to wrap and mail the books. We pay the shipping. It cost about seven dollars to mail three books. When the books are received, the recipient will log on and note that they have been received. Then, I will receive a credit and will get to order another book.

Here are my random thoughts...
  • We are going to save some $ on school next year
  • While it's not free, it's a lot cheaper than purchasing new books
  • Parting with books is difficult for us, but when we realize we get to read new books, it makes it easier to recycle.
  • This is an excellent exercise in delayed gratification for our children (well and for us too)
  • JustKidzBooks in Bartlett is still my favorite way to get books for school. I bought over $500 worth of books this week for $100 (tax free)
  • The Bargain Barn at Goodwill is still a treasure hunt that I enjoy. You can't beat .20 for a book.
  • And, Garage Sales are still the bomb!!!

Now, I'm off to pack up some bags to take to Goodwill.

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