My name is Jennifer, I am the founder and co-owner of "The Lemonade Connection". I live in Upstate New York...close enough to the city to make a trip in and far enough away to feel that country living is part of heaven. I am married to an incredible man named Stephen and together we have three growing and oh so active boys - who pretty much eat us out of house and home. You would think that they are the reason I started "The Lemonade Connection" and in part you would be right. But the reason behind this whole hubba-loo...would be God's mighty hands and my strong husband Stephen.
A few years ago, my husband a Police Lieutenant, was injured while on duty. The injury to his lower back was so severe that it required a double spinal fusion with large titanium rods and screws. After the surgery, came a serious recovery period that kept him away from his job for a full 1 1/2 years. It was an experience in our marriage that I will never forget for as long as I live. It made us closer in ways I could never have duplicated any other way. And it challenged us in ways that I couldn't imagine before this. Stephen is tough as nails inside and out and yet it took everything he had inside, to go through the surgery and find a way back to being able to do things as simple as standing up, to moving and walking again.
Now I will tell you, I'm a girl who truly likes financial security...Stephen will probably laugh when he reads this because that is most assuredly an understatement! For me, the moment he went out on injury, it felt like the world collapsed around me and was about to take us under. I imagined losses of titantic proportions on every level...financially, emotionally, physically and mentally. Oddly enough, this is where God and my husband share a secret connection and bonded together even stronger. Stephen patted my sobbing shoulders and said, "It's all going to be ok."
I wish I could say that I believed him. But inside, my life still felt like a tornado was shredding my daily existence. In all the areas, I had imagined, we did take a hit. But we never went under. Amazingly.
As the financial strains tugged ever stronger month by month, I knew I had to make better choices with the money we had. One day I told my husband I was going to try couponing and see if I could save a little on our groceries. He not only thought it was a great idea, he went with me to the local market and we purchased a few things to get me started. Nothing major - just a small purple accordion file with 12 dividers and a pair of small scissors that I could tuck inside the back pocket for quick clipping.
That week, I clipped every coupon from the newspaper and then printed out every coupon I could get my hands on through coupons.com, redplum.com and smartsource.com. Initially my savings was small. I'd save $12.00 on a trip to the grocery store and feel like a million dollars. But on one particular day, I stumbled on a clearance sale for dish washing detergent. The price tag read, $3.49, which was half off the price I would normally pay. I knew I had a $.75 coupon inside my trusted little purple file. When I got to the check out, I watched the screen as the coupon doubled...giving me $1.50 off of the already discounted bottle. My total came to $1.99 for a detergent I was used to paying $7.00 for on any given day. They say people have "light bulb moments"...this my friend was mine. I had just saved my family $5.01 on something...with very little effort on my part!
I rushed home, jumped out of the car and ran toward my husband who was waiting for me in the yard. Clutching the receipt and the bottle of detergent, I pointed like a dart, at the savings that was highlighted near the bottom of the paper ribbon. I felt so alive - so responsible and proud - it was amazing! Excitedly I blurted out..."I think I am really onto something here! We could save our family a lot of money doing this kind of shopping."
As my couponing expanded, so did my understanding of better ways to save money on not just groceries but everything from travel, to cable television and eating out. I started to look at coupons in a whole new light. Each coupon wasn't just a piece of paper to clip out - each coupon was cash that didn't come out of my pocket! It became clear...
God had taken our hopeless economic Lemons and showed our family how to make amazing...thriving...Lemonade!
Right about now, the word "invaluable" comes to my mind as I write this...because that is the word that completely describes what I feel about the lessons God has given me on this subject. In His mercy, He taught me that through our financial hardships...I could become a more responsible person for my family. In the midst of the hardship, we were eating better and lived more abundantly than we had when times were good financially.
It was so easy to become passionate about this subject. It's contagious and exciting to share. And I knew this information wasn't mine to own. As I've discovered, it seems that sharing what you learn as a couponer, is a natural progression for most. In fact, I haven't met a couponer yet who wants to keep it to themselves. It's pretty much the secret - we all want to share! That's why I am so grateful that you are here, right now. And I really hope you'll share whatever you learn with those around you too.
Thank you for coming into "The Lemonade Connection" - I am thrilled to share this with you and my fellow coupon savings friends. Stop by any time and share your own connection between the Lemons you've been given and the Lemonade you're making!
I'd love to hear your story -
Our Web Designer Pretty Lovely Design