The Coupon Man Poem – Day 85: Eating Well On $1 A Day


It is bad enough that people have decided that it is OK to refer to me as “The Coupon Man” (I think my sister is telling everyone she knows to do it as part of her duty under SARBSS because she knows that it will get a reaction out of me) The irony is also not lost on me that this label is for someone that dislikes couponing as much as I do. One would assume it really couldn't get any worse, but then Lea in the comments decided that a coupon man poem was in order:

HE IS NO STRANGER TO THE PAPERS
AND THE LOCALS KNOW HIS FAME
THEY SPEAK OF HIM IN WHISPERS
BUT THEY NEVER USE HIS NAME

Chorus:
THEY CALL HIM THE COUPON MAN,
THE STRONG, COURAGEOUS COUPON MAN
A GREAT BIG MOUNTAIN OF A MAN.

HE NEVER GOES INTO THE STORE
EXCEPT WHEN HE’S EQUIPPED
HE RECKONS THERE’S A TIME TO SHOP
AND COUPONS TO BE CLIPPED

Chorus

THEY KNOW THAT WHEN IT COMES TO COUPONING
HE’S BETTER THAN THE BEST.
STILL, HIS SISTER’S ALWAY FOOL
ENOUGH TO PUT HIM TO THE TEST.

Chorus

TO EVERY LAD WHO COMES TO HIM
TO LEARN THE SECRET OF HIS ART
HE TELLS THEM THERE’S ONE LESSON
WATCH WHAT YOU PUT IN YOUR CART

Chorus

THERE IS A MORAL TO HIS EXPLOITS
HIS CHARITY HAS JUST BEGUN
COLLECT YOUR COUPONS WISELY
AND HAVE A LOT OF FUN

Chorus

While I do appreciate the attention (because the more attention this challenge gets, the more people will see that they can help out their local community food bank without spending a lot of money), I know what it ultimately means the next time I see my friends. Even worse, it's no longer a stretch to assume that in the very near future the word “crazy” will be inserted between “The” and “Coupon Man” which is definitely something I would rather avoid if at all possible…

During my travels I did come across a Safeway where there were some more $1.00 off 1 peelies for the Kraft cheese so I decided to get myself 5 packs for this challenge (I would have bought more and donated them to the local food bank, but the shelves weren't fully stocked and I wanted to leave some for others to take advantage of). I ended up buying a package each of Parmesan, Mexican 4 Cheese, Monterey Jack, Mexican Cheddar Jack and Mild Cheddar. I also purchased a tomato so that the transaction came out positive and ended up spending $0.07 for everything:

Kraft cheese

day 85 receipt

day 85 receipt total

I have the distinct feeling that I will be eating a lot of cheese over the next couple of weeks…

Plum Smoothie

As always, the smoothie (this time plums, a banana, a bit of ice and milk) is a great way to begin the day. Definitely give it a try if you haven't – you'll be hooked in no time.

plum smoothie

Bacon Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich

Because the previous bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich I made was so good, I couldn't resist making myself another one (and no scrimping on the bacon again, either). Good stuff!

blt sandwich

Garlic Chicken Bacon Cheese Pasta

Going on the assumption that if you cook something that has garlic, bacon and cheese as part of the recipe, it is likely to taste pretty darn good, I decided to use the last of the penne rigate pasta and cook up the last chicken breast I had. Once the chicken breast was cooked, I threw onions, green pepper and garlic into the pan:

onions green pepper garlic

I then added about a quarter of the cooked chicken breast and some bacon to the mix:

bacon chicken

Once the pasta was done, I added that along with a handful if the shredded Mexican 4 Cheese I had just purchased:

garlic bacon cheese pasta

And in the end I was correct. It's pretty difficult to go wrong when garlic, bacon and cheese are part of the recipe — mmm, mmm, good:

chicken bacon cheese pasta

Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

I love this dessert. I simply took frozen bananas and added a spoonful of peanut butter to the blender (nothing else needed) and out comes heaven:

homemade peanut butter banana ice cream

This is the current list of food I still have
This is the current list of what I have purchased:

Goal: 100 days eating on $1 a day
Current Money Spent: $53.67
Money Left to Spend: $46.33 ($6.17 must be spent at CVS, $1.50 must be spent at Safeway)
Retail Value of Everything Purchased: $1424.08

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The Beginning ::: Day 86: I Still Can't Flip An Omelet

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26 Responses to The Coupon Man Poem – Day 85: Eating Well On $1 A Day

  1. lisa says:

    What is the $5.00 coupon?

  2. jeffrey says:

    @lisa

    That is a Kraft Catalina coupon that I had from the cheese I purchased for the food banks, but I received another one back so it comes out even (called rolling coupons). If you were to do this the first time, you would have to pay $5 out of pocket, but you would still get a coupon for $5 good for anything on your next purchase making it technically free.

  3. Carla says:

    I noticed that the cheese is already grated for you. Just a quick tip. The cheese can be frozen, especially since you are using it as a topping if you will instead of eating it in chunks. Also if you run across a deal on sour cream it also works, but after freezing the sour cream, you have to stir the container to mix it up again. Also to keep your sour cream and cottage cheese fresher longer turn the containers upside down. They will stay fresher for up to a week longer than due by date. Home economics trick picked up while in class. Keep up the good work on all of your projects. By the way what does your father think about this challenge so far?

  4. I’ve enjoyed reading this blog over the last couple of days. I’m a little late to the bloggy party, I know.

    I wanted to report in that I thought peanut butter, bananas, and honey on a tortilla sounded really good. So good, in fact, that I made it for lunch today. It’s delicious! Thanks for the heads up. It’s impressed me to see how far your cooking skills have come — and now you know the big secret about garlic, bacon, and cheese, so things are about to really blow up now. Because I really enjoy cooking, though, I was hoping you’d start to enjoy it too. Are you getting any pleasure from creating a tasty meal these days? How about the satisfaction of inventing your peanut butter banana ice cream?

  5. Lanny says:

    Don’t forget that you can freeze cheese, so don’t let it go off before you use it.

  6. Sam says:

    I hope you’re saving your bacon grease. That stuff is MAGICAL, and even when you’re out of bacon your egg dishes can be cooked in it giving it a bacon-y flavor.

    Either let the grease cool until solid in the pan and scrape it into a small plastic container or decant it hot into something ceramic (I have lidded single serving soup crocks and they work perfectly), store in the fridge.

  7. Kim says:

    Fry cooked potato pieces in bacon fat with a little onion, garlic, salt and pepper — home fries!

  8. Autumn says:

    You can portion out some of each of the cheeses into small seal-able baggies and freeze the rest. It helps to keep the cheese from going bad or drying out too fast, and you have some fresh of each for different dishes.

  9. Michelle says:

    What to do with all that wonderful cheese? I love cheese! There’s so much to do with it. Add it to green salad, to potatoes (mashed or baked), taco’s, nacho’s, burrito’s!

    One thing I rarely make but is fantastic is old fashioned baked mac & cheese. You could bake up a batch of this and it would last days! I know, I know, you would really miss the opportunity to cook up a fresh dinner from scratch every day, as you love to cook so much… but really it’s so yummy that it’s worth it! LOL

    Ingredients
    1 package macaroni (or other pasta)
    1 egg
    2 cups milk
    2 tablespoons butter, melted
    2 1/2 cups shredded cheese
    salt and pepper to taste

    Directions
    1.Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F Lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish.
    2.In a large pot of salted water, lightly boil the pasta for about 5 minutes until half-cooked.
    3.Whisk the egg and milk together in a large cup. Add butter and cheese to the egg and milk. Stir well.
    4.Place the lightly cooked macaroni in the prepared baking dish. Pour the egg and cheese liquid over the macaroni, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and stir well. Press the mixture evenly around the baking dish.
    5.Bake uncovered, for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the top is brown.

    You could choose any noodle you want though something like macaroni ends up with cheese inside the noodle. And you can use a variety of cheeses that you think would taste good together.

  10. Wendy says:

    Nice poem! Let me know if you need music added and you could have your own jingle. Just think of the television possibilities, I am sure your friends and sister would love it.

    Also, I like that you have started garnishing your food for pictures. Looks tasty!

  11. Pam says:

    You are inspiring me to dust off my blender – The smoothies were already tempting, but your idea about the frozen bananas and peanut butter has pushed me over the edge, haha – thanks for the great idea :-)

  12. RW says:

    If you want an easy meal made with cheese-quesadillas!

  13. roxie says:

    Love the poem! Good job Lea.

    I went to CVS yesterday and did some more shopping and saving. Couldn’t pass up the Kotex deal and will be taking that a couple other things to the local food pantry. I stopped and spoke to someone in charge there to make sure they will accept personal care products and she practically jumped up and down for joy!

  14. Melanie says:

    I love my morning smoothie, but I have ti use an immersion blender because my big blender broke. I lieu of ice I freeze part of the fruit. It still makes it thick, but without the ice chunks that sometimes get left behind. They are a great way to get in milk and fruit, plus my kiddo’s drink them which helps up their milk intake as cwell. :)

  15. Patricia says:

    Wow! I want that cheese! Too bad we don’t have such neatly pre-grated packaged cheese.

    I love that pasta dish. I’m going to try that as soon as I get some bigger pasta (I only have salad macaroni left).

    Also, your fruit pictures look very nice and appetizing. It sent me on a quest to look for fresh berries. They were expensive! :cries: We don’t grow those here so it has to be imported. Raspberries came up to approx $8 for a small pack (0.25kg? 0.5kg?)!

  16. Susan says:

    Grated cheese does go moldy quite quickly. I don’t freeze in the original packaging but will put the cheese in a freezer bag and freeze it flat. When I want to use it, I like to thaw first so that it will melt easier when cooking, especially if used for pizza.

  17. Brie Padfield says:

    You need some yeast so you can make some bread with all of that flour you have. Making bread is not as hard as it sounds, and it would save you money on buying bread for all of those perfectly acceptable delicious peanut butter and banana sandwiches. My stepmother and my husband put mayo on theirs, take that coupon guys sister!
    Basic White Bread (you just need an envelope of yeast to make two loaves)

    Ingredients

    * 2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
    * 2/3 cup white sugar
    * 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
    * 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    * 1/4 cup vegetable oil
    * 6 cups flour

    1. In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water, and then stir in yeast. Allow to proof until yeast resembles a creamy foam.
    2. Mix salt and oil into the yeast. Mix in flour one cup at a time. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn dough to coat. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
    3. Punch dough down. Knead for a few minutes, and divide in half. Shape into loaves, and place into two well oiled 9×5 inch loaf pans. Allow to rise for 30 minutes, or until dough has risen 1 inch above pans.
    4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes.

  18. AB says:

    Carla,
    I’ve tried freezing sour cream and it came out just awful. No matter how I mixed it after defrosting, it had lost it’s thickness and was a weird soupy grainy texture.

  19. Ryan says:

    If I spend a $5 catalina, will I get a catalina back?

  20. Michelle says:

    Ryan, if you’re asking about the safeway deal – then yes, you can use a $5 cheese catalina to buy more cheese and you’ll get another $5 cheese catalina. Assuming of course, that the deal is still going on and I don’t know if it is or not.

    Walgreens has a similar type deal where they will post an ad saying that (for example) you buy an olay body wash for $4 and you’ll get a $4 register reward. It’s the same type of deal, you get a coupon good on your next order. However, if you use that $4 register reward to buy another $4 olay body wash, you will not get a new register reward.

  21. Dana says:

    Lea, I love your poem!

  22. Katrina says:

    So essentially, you could spend about $3 a day at this point to get yourself to the end of the challenge under budget. You can REALLY splurge now!!

  23. Gail says:

    Life got in the way and I got way behind on reading about your eating on a $1, but I think you are doing great and the amount that you have contributed to charities is awesome. I’m trying to be much more conscious of coupons and extra bucks as we have a fairly close CVS plus we visit there often for medication. I too have found that the more you use your card the more they send you coupons. I get good coupon offers just about every weekend although I can’t always use them (too often sick to go out) but I have found your posts very encouraging. Thanks!

  24. Peter M says:

    youtube remix here I come!

  25. Pingback: Eating Well On $1 A Day - Grocery Coupon Guide

  26. Lea says:

    The poem was originally a song from an old TV series, The Rifleman. I tried and tried, but I haven’t actually been able to find it sung out loud. If anyone can find it, please share!

    I am an avid EVE Online player, and one day trolling the depths of the EVE forums I came across “The Rifter Man” song, a parody of the Rifleman… The topic is unimportant, but it builds a bridge…

    When I saw the blog post titled, “The Coupon Man” it immediately came to mind, and I set to work modifying it to fit the theme!

    After consulting with a couple friends, the finished product was posted to the comments after maybe around 2 hours of editing and revising. I don’t think any of them have seen this post, so they will be excited to see we were featured !!

    I’m sorry that I kind of randomly blasted it on that thread… I felt that any introduction I would have given it would have been a disservice!

    And that is the story of how the poem came to be 😀 yay!

    Sorry for the late reply! I have been out of town on vacation. Food was included in the trip, but my $5 Kraft catalina expired while I was gone!