Once upon a time (2006), I had our third baby just as my husband was in the midst of changing jobs; while he spent the next 10 months driving 140 miles roundtrip every day to his new job, I juggled selling our house while caring for our pre-schooler, our toddler, our two old dogs, and quite possibly, the screamingest baby in the history of the human race. (He turned out just fine, btw, see? He's just extra-chatty now.)

Our budget in 2006 was tight, despite some relocation money that had been advanced to us due to our circumstances. I began Googling "saving money" and clicking around the links I found. One I happened across was one you might know well - Coupon Mom.

While I would like to tell you that I became a devout couponer right then and there after reading what Stephanie Nelson was sharing about how to save big with coupons, the truth is I didn't devote my energy to strategic couponing until late 2007 when we had finally truly settled into our new home and town.

I recently received a copy of Stephanie Nelson's new book, The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half to review and share with you, my fabuous readers.

If you're like me, a "Varsity Shopper" according to the short quiz in Chapter Two, you'll read through this book and find yourself nodding in agreement at all the many different shopping and money-saving strategies that Stephanie details. She thoroughly explains how all the pieces of the stratigic shopping pie fit together - coupons, no-frill grocery stores, drugstore reward programs, stockpiling, and menu planning - to save you big bucks over time.

What I love about this book is this: I've met so many people in real life who either read this site casually or see me saving serious cash at the stores; when I answer their "How do you DO that?!" questions, they often get overwhelmed by the sheer number of sites out there that are devoted to couponing and deals.

This book is a hands-on training manual and resource for people who want and need to save money with coupons but aren't sure where to begin. The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half steps you through the process of beginning to coupon and several other key ways to save on groceries without coupons in an easy-to-follow and well-explained format. Believe me, I know just HOW overwhelming it can be at first - we were all beginners once!

Onto the giveaway!

I've been graciously given (2) copies of this book to giveaway to you, my fabulous readers!

Even if couponing already comes as naturally to you as breathing, enter to win and then be a blessing to a coupon newbie by giving them this book and offering to mentor them until they're ready to clip & fly!

How to enter:

Leave a comment sharing sharing what type of coupon shopper you are: busy (no plans, no coupons), rookie (beginner couponer), or varsity (die-hard, never-go-shopping-without-a-list-and q's). Tell us what your greatest hurdle in couponing is or share one of your big "a-HA!" moments/trips when you saved SO much you knew you'd never EVER pay retail again.

You can earn an additional (3) chances to win as well.

1. Tweet about this giveaway then come back here and leave me a separate comment to let me know you tweeted (add the url from your tweet please).

2. Post about this giveaway at your blog with a link both to this post; come back and leave the URL of your post in a separate comment.

3. Subscribe to my RSS feed by reader or email and leave a separate comment to let me know you're a new subscriber; you can also drop me a separate comment to let me know if you're already a subscriber for this extra entry.

Remember, you MUST leave me some way to find you online (by email or by your Twitter handle) if you don't have a blog - and if you do have a blog that is not public, be sure to leave me a means of contacting you. Entries with no contact information or means of contacting you online will be disqualified.

This giveaway will end on TUESDAY, February 9, 2010, at 10:00 pm EST . I will announce the winners (selected by Random.org) on WEDNESDAY, February 10, 2010.

Good luck!

Do you have a giveaway going on at your blogjoint? Drop your giveaway post link URL below and visit the other links to find more great giveaways, too! In the title of your link, please include this info: (Site Giveaway::Item::End Date of Giveaway). Thanks!

*DISCLOSURE: I received a copy of this book for free so that I could review it. For more about my personal disclosure policy, read my disclosure page.


  1. Jennifer // February 3, 2010 11:24 AM  

    I'm a varsity couponer most day... junior varsity on the days when I forget to bring my coupons along. That's rare though, as I've saved us SO much money over the past year and a half.

    My ah-hah moment was the one that got me into couponing in the first place. A woman in front of me at Walmart took her subtotal of over $100 down to about $30. I was amazed! I hopped online right after that to figure out how I could do that too. Now I'm hooked!

  2. silvia // February 3, 2010 1:35 PM  

    I'm a varsity couponer if I don't have a coupon, it's not on sale, or I don't get money back(extra bucks, register rewards) I will not buy it.

  3. News Around The Blogs // February 3, 2010 2:02 PM  

    I would be a Varsity couponer. My biggest hurtle is stores like Walgreens not having a set coupon policy. Or stores that don't double or triple coupons. Very unfair of those grocery stores!

    newsaroundtheblogs at live dot com

  4. News Around The Blogs // February 3, 2010 2:04 PM  



  5. Lauren Keith // February 3, 2010 2:48 PM  

    I am a varsity coupon shopper. I love using coupons!! I am not as good as I want to be but say from 38 to 46 % usually!!!!

  6. Anonymous // February 3, 2010 4:20 PM  

    I just started couponing in November so I am still a beginner but it has really been clicking for me lately. I was on such a high yesterday when I left Kroger. I got 45 items for $18. It will be hard to ever pay full price again!

    Nicci Garr

  7. Steven // February 3, 2010 4:24 PM  

    I'm a rookie. My biggest hurdles are figuring out all of the vocabulary and acronyms on the various blogs and just learning what's a good deal and what's not. I've been reading your log for about two weeks and I'm SOOOO inspired! I saved $33 last week and it was super exciting! Thanks for all of your great tips!

    e-mail: kgriffis@cox.net

  8. Kristine // February 3, 2010 4:26 PM  

    I'm a rookie. My biggest hurdles are figuring out all of the vocabulary and acronyms on the various blogs and just learning what's a good deal and what's not. I've been reading your log for about two weeks and I'm SOOOO inspired! I saved $33 last week and it was super exciting! Thanks for all of your great tips!

    e-mail: kgriffis@cox.net

  9. Valerie // February 3, 2010 5:02 PM  

    I am junior varsity. I am trying hard for varsity though. Not so much ah-hah but definately my best moment was a few weeks ago at Kroger when Quaker Instant Oatmeal was on sale for $1.88. I had 4 $1 coupons and a $3.50 catilina. I wowed the checker when I handed him 2 pennies. I was happy and so was my 6 year old who finally got his dinosaur oatmeal (regularly 4.18 per box). email vback@hotmail.com

  10. Shimmeri Star // February 4, 2010 2:40 AM  

    Hi im new at this blogging thing but I AM A VARSITY COUPONER. Just the other day i did two transactions and PAID ONLY 20 CENTS OUT OF POCKET and 12 CVS dollars....and made 18 CVS Dollars and 2 $5/$25 coupons and this is what i got

    1st transaction:
    2 huggies jumbo pack...used 2 free coupons i got from complaining (please see my blog)
    2 huggies sensitive wipes...used 2 $1 off coupons (that cam with free diaper coupons)which brought my total down to $4
    then I got a CVS green tag to make it 4.99
    I used that $5 off $25 coupon and the computer came up as oweing me a penny...the cshier didnt know what t do and had to call for help...so I paid nothing and got back 5 Cvs Bucks and $5/$25 coupon
    it said i saved 31.96 on the receipt

    2nd Transaction:
    2 Dove mens body wash 5.49 each and had 2 $1 off coupons...
    1 colgate toothpaste 2.99 and had $1 off coupon...
    3 candies 3/$2...going to send in two wrappers for free bag of candies(one for my husband and me two different adresses since we just moved)...
    love dice 9 cents (filler)...
    Olay definity anti-aging kit orig. 32.49 on clearance for 3.24 and had a $1 off coupon (i gave away my carry-on-me olay coupons the other day cause i never find deals like this)(then i also hid 3 more of these things so i could get them today with my at-home-coupons)(and then im going to make money by selling them on Ebay)...
    had $4 off $20 Cvs coupon
    total $12.20
    used $12 in CVS bucks
    it said on the reciept i saved $50.22 today

    ps i subscribe to your feed thank you

  11. jneely0426 // February 4, 2010 4:58 AM  

    I am caught between being rookie and varsity - with so many aspirations!

  12. jneely0426 // February 4, 2010 5:01 AM  

    I tweeted!


  13. jneely0426 // February 4, 2010 5:02 AM  

    I am also a subscriber via email. So excited for this giveaway!

  14. Lelia // February 4, 2010 7:02 AM  

    I'm definitely "busy," I try to coupon and after I cut them out I tend to lose them among receipts and in my purse! I also love cooking - so I have a one-track mind when I go to the store. I need what I need! I have to learn how to become more organized when it comes to coupons!

  15. Lelia // February 4, 2010 7:07 AM  


    I also tweeted!

  16. Anonymous // February 4, 2010 7:28 AM  

    I'm a varsity couponer. If it's not on sale or I don't have a coupon, then I don't buy it. It's great when the cashier is wowwed by how much you save! I'm so glad I found your blog last week!


  17. Magali // February 4, 2010 9:12 AM  

    Hi! I am in between rookie and varsity! The biggest challenge has been that sometimes I will use a coupon only to find out that the following week the product is on sale and I could've saved that much more! Thanks to your blog I am learning more!

  18. Nancy // February 4, 2010 9:17 AM  

    I am a rookie couponer. I just starting using coupons these past couple of weeks and I am amazed at how much we've save! It's exciting to see the total bill come down to less than half the original amount.

    My husband was a little skeptical at first about using coupons but when he saw that we save over $20 with just a few coupons he was just as excited as I was. Now he gives me full support on using coupons on all the items that we purchase!

  19. Christy // February 4, 2010 10:18 AM  

    Please enter me for this give away because I am getting the coupon bug!!! I really have never used coupons, but after being inspired by a friend of mine and my attempt to drastically cut our grocery bill, I am looking for tips and ideas to be a successful coupon user!

  20. Beth // February 4, 2010 10:30 AM  

    I am a rookie Couponer. I just started this hard core about 2 months ago. I still don't feel like I'm good at it.

    I'm thinking I must be missing something so I'm hoping this book would fill in the blanks for me!

  21. Eva eidwriter@aol.com // February 4, 2010 11:20 AM  

    I am a rookie my biggest hurdle is geting stores to accept my coupons sometimes they do and sometimes they don't I guess small town are like that

  22. Ellen C. // February 4, 2010 3:24 PM  

    I'm a varsity shopper all the way. Thanks for the chance.

    sweetascandy579 at yahoo dot com

  23. Ellen C. // February 4, 2010 3:24 PM  

    I'm a google susbcriber.

    sweetascandy579 at yahoo dot com

  24. Katie // February 4, 2010 7:58 PM  

    Im a rookie. I make some mistakes and dont always understand what coupons can be combined, but I am addicted!

  25. Katie // February 4, 2010 8:10 PM  

    I just started subscribing to your RSS feed through email!

  26. Marti // February 4, 2010 8:31 PM  

    I'm a varsity couponer most of the time, I carry my coupon organizer in my bag.

    My biggest road-block is finding coupons for healthy, low-sodium foods. Many items w/ coupons are pre-packaged foods w/ too much sodium. I used to save at least 20% off my bill. Now that our eating habits have changed, it's down to 10-15%. Anyone have advice? Thanks!
    @mleitchohio on Twitter

  27. Marti // February 4, 2010 8:32 PM  

    I'm a new subscriber.

  28. Dawn // February 5, 2010 8:05 AM  

    I am becoming a varsity couponer. Last night I sent my husband to Kroger and had all of the mega event items he needed to buy (with coupons) listed so it would be easy for him.

    When our weekly grocery shopping trips went from $100 down to $60 or $70 (and I was actually coming home with more!) it was so exciting! I'll never go back.

  29. Dawn // February 5, 2010 8:06 AM  

    I subscribe to your e-mail.


  30. Anonymous // February 5, 2010 1:34 PM  

    I am a rookie, but trying hard every day to hone my skills


  31. Anonymous // February 5, 2010 1:45 PM  

    I subscribe to your email updates.


  32. Andrea Haschart // February 5, 2010 4:16 PM  

    I am a varsity couponer since Sept. 2009. I am amazed at everything I can get for free with coupons. My biggest challenge is to stop shopping when my weekly money is gone.
    Andrea Haschart-ahaschart@hotmail.com