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In my ongoing attempt to see how far $20 can go, I headed back to CVS for weeks 3 & 4 of my challenge!  With the money left over from weeks 1 & 2  here’s what happened:

Week 3

This week was all about adaptation. Much of my community was flooded, and normality was put on hold while we helped friends and family try to salvage what, if anything, was left of their homes and livelihood. With my weekend swamped, literally and figuratively, my normal routine went out the window. Unorganized and with only a quick glance at KCL, I ended up at an unfamiliar CVS with a very different layout.  Due to frustration, I checked out with only my free St. Joseph's aspirin, forgetting completely to even take my green bag out of my purse.

Aargh! Maybe I'll just take a few weeks off.  Then I recalled the free tampons, the cheap Herbal Essence and bodywash! How could I skip out on 24-cent body wash??? Especially when I had donated much of my stockpile to flood relief? I regrouped that evening, gathered myself together, and returned to CVS the next day.  With my list, coupons, and green bag in hand, what a day I had!

After reading the discussions on KCL about the Airwick moneymaker, I talked myself into going to a third CVS, for a third day in a row (so unlike me!) Unfortunately most of the Freshmatic Compacts were sold out. So what did I do?  Adapt!  I sat down, in the middle of the aisle, pulled out my phone and returned to KCL, vaguely remembering a fellow couponer's tip for alternatives to the deal.  Luckily, the larger Freshmatic was in stock. Purchasing two large and one small, while diminishing the moneymaker, put me just slightly over the target $20. So here’s my haul for Week 3:

Newton Thins 2.50
Softsoap Body Wash 2.99
Herbal Essences Shampoo 2.99
Herbal Essences Conditioner 2.99
St. Joseph's aspirin 2.00
Colgate Optic White 3.99
CVS Allergy Relief 3.69
Airwick I Motion Compact Kit 4.99
2 Airwick Freshmatic Kits 7.99
Buy 1 Softsoap, Get $2 Extra Buck
Buy 1 Herbal Essences, Get $1 Extra Buck, limit 3 (I used 2)
Buy 1 St. Joseph Aspirin, Get $1 Extra Buck, limit 1
Buy 1 Colgate Optic White, Get $1.50 EB
Buy 1 CVS Allergy Relief, Get $3.69 EB
Spend $20 on Airwick, Get $10 EB
Free Newton Thins ($2.50) from magic coupon machine
$0.75/1 Softsoap bodywash manufacturer coupon
(2) $1.00/1 Herbal Essences manufacturer coupon
$1.00/1 St. Joseph's Aspirin manufacturer coupon
$1.50/1 Colgate Optic White Toothpaste manufacturer coupon
$1.00/1 Colgate Optic White Toothpaste CVS coupon
(3) $4.00/1 Airwick Freshmatic manufacturer coupon
Spent: $24.01, Received $20.19 ExtraBucks!
(Along with a raincheck for RePhresh Tampons, Buy 1 at 6.79, Receive $6.79 EB)
Total Remaining (including last week's gross profit of $0.73) = $16.91

Week 4

Week Four was much less exciting and will be summed up quickly. Yes, I am capable of making a long story short! I was able to return to my favorite CVS, but the Magic Machine and I have had a serious falling out. "No coupons are available to print at this time." What?!?!?! I haven't scanned my card in at least four days! Deep breath. People are watching. Move on.

Earlier, when I dropped off supplies at a local flood relief shelter, I learned they were especially in need of diapers.  So I took advantage of the Huggies deal this week and snagged some free Candy Corn as well. I can't believe how cheap diapers can be! Since I had already used up many of the featured coupons in other deals the past few weeks, week four's haul was limited to just these two deals.

3 Huggies Little Movers Slip-On Jumbo Packs $9.00
Candy Corn $0.99
Spend $25 on Baby Items, Get $10 EB
Buy 1 Mellocreme Candy, Get $0.99 EB
(3) $3.00/1 Huggies Little Movers Slip-On Jumbo Packs
25% off CVS coupon uploaded to my card from the computer (I had forgotten about this, and it took me
minutes of staring at my receipt before I figured it out- the 25% was taken off the $0.99 Candy Corn,
which was SO not a good use of the coupon!)
Spent $20.15, Received $10.99 ExtraBucks
Total remaining: $7.75 (and yes, I had to "borrow" real money outside the challenge this week, and that
will be our little secret)

The diapers were an unexpected purchase for me, as the recent flooding was an unexpected life disruption for thousands of people. I almost didn't include them in my challenge, but I really wanted to emphasize the overwhelming positive outcome of extreme couponing. By the way, receipts for tax deductible donations are based on the value of the items, so my $9.08 OOP Huggies purchase is reflected as a $36 donation. So, I end this week a lot closer to having used up my $20, but with a great feeling, knowing how it was put to use. My stockpile is mostly depleted, and while it certainly didn't save the world, as I had imagined it might when I first started crazily clipping coupons, it attracted the attention of certain skeptics in my life who suddenly have much less to say. And the silver lining? I have so much cabinet  space to build a new stockpile!

This has been a guest post by Melissa from Whitney Point, NY
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