Extreme Couponing; not as seen on TV
February 23, 2012
FORT STEWART, Ga. - If you don't know the technical difference between a transaction and a purchase, or how to stack coupons from a store and a manufacturer, you are not alone. But there is one 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team wife who is there to help if you would like to learn.
A few years ago, Maggie Leung never thought she would be an "extreme" couponer, let alone teaching others how to save money in the same way. After her husband, Capt. Dennis Leung, now the 1st HBCT Personnel Officer In-Charge, was sent to Chicago for recruiting duty, something had to give for the Family.
"Chicago is an extremely expensive city and there was no commissary within a reasonable drive time," she said. "I had to learn how to make our grocery budget stretch, and I figured out it was coupons."
Not just couponing, but an adjusted form of extreme couponing."
After their time in Chicago was up, Maggie, Dennis and their two children moved back to Fort Stewart, Maggie's hometown. And then Leung received an email from a very surprising source.
"A producer from the TLC Extreme Couponing show emailed me," explained Leung. "I took it to my husband and my mom and started thinking about whether I wanted to go on that show or not. I decided to respectfully decline just because I didn't feel comfortable at that time going on national television. But I mentioned it to somebody and I ended up doing a class."
Because of Leung's close connection to the post, she thought teaching other wives to save money could be a way to give back.
"The Army Wife Network contacted me," Leung continued. "I began doing "webinars" to reach all my fellow Army wives and then also doing classes on Fort Stewart because these people are my family."
Antonia Stickley, whose husband is in C. Co., 3rd Brigade Support Battalion, 1st HBCT, took Leung's couponing class when it was offered to wives of the Raider Brigade.
"I'm not looking to have a huge stack of things I don't need," Stickley said. "Just so we don't have to worry about living paycheck to paycheck would be great. I've watched the show before doing this class, and it's just overwhelming. [But Leung] brings it to a reality, which is great. The techniques that she showed us will help me not spend as much time cutting and organizing the coupons. That way I can save money, but I will still be able to spend time with the family."
That is exactly what Leung's goal is for her classes.
"I hope that people walk away from my classes not expecting to save thousands of dollars on one trip, but just to save a few dollars here and there," she concluded. "That is still money kept in their bank account. I am a military wife; I have been doing it for over seven years. Even though [Army wives] all come from different parts of the country, different backgrounds, we have this bond that is the Army. And only other Army wives can really understand what it's like. These women are my sisters. Who doesn't want to help out their sisters?"