Or maybe I should say the ultimate break on coffee. I'm not normally a coffee drinker, although I have a fondness for Maxwell House International Cafe's French Vanilla flavor. Since the beginning of the year, as part of my effort to reduce my carbon footprint, I've been trying to set the thermostat low during the day when the kids are at school (and my husband is working upstairs in his office surrounded by heat-generating computers). I turn the thermostat down to 65 degrees when the kids leave and usually keep it there until my son comes home around 3:00. Then it goes up to 67, sometimes to 69 depending on the amount of complaining I hear from the children. Because it can get quite chilly in the house during the day, I find myself having one or two cups of coffee a day. I already had a can of French Vanilla Cafe in my pantry from last year (normally my coffee consumption is very sporadic), but I was getting near the bottom and debating whether the $3.39 price tag for a new can fit in my food budget for the month.
While mulling over the decision in Meijer, I came across two sets of shelves near the milk with clearance items. On it were cans of Maxwell House International Cafe in Peppermint Mocha Latte flavor. They were marked down to $.84 a can. I debated for a while. My first instinct was to scoop up every can I saw. However, I'd never had the flavor and was concerned I would find it undrinkable and then have bought $10 worth of coffee for nothing. I bought two cans and tried the flavor that day. It was wonderful! Next morning I scurried by up to Meijer and found the shelves empty of coffee. Apparently everybody else found it a good deal as well. I did some excavating and managed to find two more cans hidden behind other items and quickly purchased them.
My savings went beyond this, however. It just so happened Maxwell House was having a deal that week (I knew from the cash register-generated coupon) for a $1 coupon towards my next shopping trip if I purchased two cans of International coffee. So, I got the $1 coupon the first day and when I bought two more the following day, I received another coupon. That brought my $.84 can of coffee down to $.34! Cha-ching!
Granted someone could argue, as my husband did, that I don't need coffee and even if I did choose to drink it, there were even cheaper options. I have no delusions that I'm hitting rock bottom with my grocery budget or spending habits, but my $.34 can of coffee is a huge improvement over the regular price, to say nothing of the cost of a cup from the famous chain coffee shop just down the hill from me...