Friendship Kellys savings girlfriend adviceHow can being frugal and couponing make a difference in your community?

I love how girlfriends inspire and teach each other – how one woman has great girlfriend advice that helps another, how we collectively support each other with great ideas and shared insights. And I really love how we inspire and assist each other in making the world a little better.

Meet our girlfriend KELLY SNYDER, aka: Kansas City  Mamas. She’s a ‘frugal blogger’ who uses her couponing and frugal shopping expertise for good. How? Check out the following guest blog and LISTEN TO our BlogTalkRadio show with Kelly.

Giving Forward Through Coupons

My girlfriend asked me the other day, “Do you use all the stuff you get for FREE? Doesn’t some of it go to waste?”

My answer, “Nope, I don’t use it all. And it never goes to waste because I donate it. In fact, I often buy things specifically to donate.”

For some, people who coupon can seem like they belong in a foreign land. They carry around some sort of coupon organizer. The talk in a different language. And they always seem to hold up the checkout line. (I know it, I don’t deny it.)

But once I started to really use coupons, I saw how much FREE or nearly FREE stuff I could get. Granted, some of the items we don’t use in our family, but I kept thinking that there had to be other people who could use them.

I wrestle with that voice sometimes. I realized I could just ignore the free items and move on with my weekly grocery list, but I remembered what it was like before I started to use coupons.

I remembered my heart aching because I wanted to give to my church’s or son’s school food drive, but couldn’t. I either didn’t have the money (or it was a conflict if I did give) or there wasn’t much extra in the pantry.

And I realized what a gift it is that I even know how to coupon. I learned how to coupon because there were other websites and forum boards that were willing to teach me about coupons, deals, stockpiling, and strategic shopping.

Even though all of us are in different places financially – one thing we can have in common is a heart of giving – especially when we can do it for nearly FREE. So in a way, I’m giving my gift forward. Someone gave me the gift of teaching me, and now I get to give the gift of a box full of items every month to my local pantry.

And if you see one of us in front of you at the checkout lane, remember, sometimes we have all that stuff not for us, but for someone else. (And it is still okay for you to pick another lane.)

Don’t think it is possible? Check out what I bought the other day (see photo above). The total was $2.85 + tax for a sizeable bag full of food. Gotta love couponing!

Kelly Snyder is the author of Kansas City Mamas – a website devoted to living well by saving more. She is married to her best friend (Hubs) and is the stay-at-home mama to DS (7) and DD (5). In addition, she believes that life is too short for bad coffee, wine or food (but not necessarily in that order).

Do you coupon, girlfriend? Any girlfriend advice for how to save and be able to share, like Kelly?

More frugal friends who have shared great girlfriend advice with Girlfriendology:

To be honest, this post got us thinking about how, as women, we have to take charge of our finances and be proactive in managing our money – not leave it to someone else. We encourage you to read up on financial management for women, explore sources like Dave Ramsey and to talk with your girlfriends about how they manage their finances and plan for their retirement / estate