Blog for Change…….

Our Sunday paper landed with a thud this past week. Was it full of news I could use? Was there that much in the world to write about that it would fill more pages than usual? Nooooo- it was full of multi color glossy paper ads for Back to School sales for over 12 retail stores. Although no one at my house is going back to school, I am participating in a “Back Pack Project” for community kids, so I started my shopping list. After flipping through the pages, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that five of the stores with the best “sales” are located in one shopping area just a short driving distance from my house. I compared prices, created my list and was ready to go shopping when I notice the “coupon inserts.” Woo hoo; even more ways to save! After spending a quick five minutes scanning through the five pages of inserts, out came the scissors and I began clipping away at the four school supply coupons I found. Now I can even share resources for the Back Pack Project. Not out the door yet, still need to take advantage of the online couponsYikes – this could take hours if I’m not careful. Shopping and searching for deals online can quickly become addictive. During my hour-long hunt of searching for the best deals, I successfully registered for several sites that will email me coupons for products I selected. Ok, I did have to share my name, address and email address, but they’re sites that have privacy policies and a good reputation. My two favorites were and  Do your own online shopping and bargain hunting when you have time – not as you are leaving out to go shopping. Yes, it took time, energy and research, but now I’m armed with coupons and the potential to save big bucks. In fact, now I’m able to increase my “gift” by $18.00. May not be a front page story, but a good reminder of good basic budgeting; prepare, research, have fun and challenge yourself to save even more the next time.


Cathy Williams is a former writer for MMI.

  • The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is an association of nonprofit consumer organizations that was established in 1968 to advance the consumer interest through research, advocacy, and education. Today, nearly 300 of these groups participate in the federation and govern it through their representatives on the organization's Board of Directors.

  • Since 2007, the Homeownership Preservation Foundation (HPF) has served as a trusted, neutral source of information for more than eight million homeowners. They are partnered with, and endorsed by, numerous major government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of the Treasury.

  • The mission of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD works to strengthen the housing market in order to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination.

  • The Council on Accreditation (COA) is an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. Their mission is to partner with human service organizations worldwide to improve service delivery outcomes by developing, applying, and promoting accreditation standards.

  • The National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), founded in 1951, is the nation’s largest and longest-serving nonprofit financial counseling organization. The NFCC’s mission is to promote the national agenda for financially responsible behavior, and build capacity for its members to deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.