U know ur old… bumped up

Uncle Ben is just visiting

I’m keeping this up as a sticky until I get more donation ideas.  Come on, guys, put your thinking caps on!

when men pay you to stay away…among other things.  True story.  I’ve written in past years about pulling plants out of garden center dumpsters – hate to see stuff like this go into landfills and at least 50% of the stuff grows well when you plant it at home.  PITA had been bugging me about hitting up the Clover Garden Center dumpster in the Naperville Butera parking lot, so I agreed to stop there on Saturday evening on the way to CVS for our Tide-o-rama event.

Dumpster was pretty empty, except for a flat of phlox in the bottom.  I picked PITA up and held her while she reached in to grab the tray.  Mind you, I’ve never done food diving, nor have I set foot inside a dumpster (of any kind).  While you hear about people doing quite well with the pickins’, I personally am a great big chicken.

Pull out the tray and put it in the back of the car.  Older man comes over to his car (BMW sedan) parked next to mine.  We do the nod hello thing.  He reaches out and hands me a folded up bill.  I don’t take it, back away and say “I’M NOT POOR!  I’M NOT POOR!  I’M AN EXTREME COUPONER”  And then, in what has be one of my more glorious moments, I hear “I HAVE A WEBSITE!” come out of my mouth.

I was hoping the bill was one of those advertising flyers that look like money but flip it over and read about lawn maintenance or hot babes.  Get in the car and by the light I see Uncle Ben wink at me.  Holy crap!  Guy gave me a hundred bucks just to go away!  This could be a very profitable side job, I’m thinking.  Phone rings and it’s Rachel.  I tell her the story and after laughing hysterically, she asks “You aren’t wearing those holey old clothes of yours, are you?”  Ah, no (and they are comfortable, but that’s another story).  So now I’ve made her night and continue on to CVS, where I’m hoping they will tell me that the bill is counterfeit, but no such luck.

Now here’s the dilemma:  I’m not gonna keep the cash, but do I give the entire amount to one person/family or break it up and if so, what breakdown?  I’m throwing out my thoughts to you guys in the hopes that you will have suggestions.  Since we all generate a ton of excess stuff (like diapers, formula and Pedialyte freezer pops, EE pasta, EE mustard, etc.) that could really help out someone, how about if we band together kinda like we did with the domestic abuse shelter donations (you guys were awesome – two trucks of stuff!) and come up with either a small organization or family who could really use some temporary help.  No relatives or “my best friend.”  Hell, take care of your own relatives and friends, thankyouverymuch.

Please, please, please make some suggestions and let’s see what we can accomplish.  And no, Rachel, I am not having a picnic in a park like someone else did a few years ago…unless there’s a Goddess Park somewhere I haven’t heard about…

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19 thoughts on “U know ur old… bumped up

  1. WOW!!! These are the acts of kindness that keep me believing there are still good people out there and we are not all evil, LOL. I would not donate it to an organization, I think that a struggling family or elderly person would appreciate this much much more. I’d really look for a needy elderly person since people tend to forget about them.

  2. I donate multiple times a week to the People’s Resource Center in Westmont. I know many of us have their favorite organizations. What I like about the PRC is they offer computer classes, job coaching, art therapy classes, cooking lessons, a food pantry…the list goes on and on. They treat everyone with dignity and they want to see people succeed. I would love to see a group of us work together to help them now or anytime in the future. They also hand out pet food to try to keep pets with their families, even during difficult financial times. (And as far as the $100 bill goes, you could buy a ton of stuff with it and donate it or buy gift cards to benefit several families. There are so many people in need.)

  3. I want to know how to get on the struggling family list! I have 2 special need kids in diapers and one of them medically fragile yet no one drops off diapers for me. I love your site and your sense of humor. Sites like these have really helped me stretch our money. I’d hate to think where we’d be if I hadn’t started couponing. I am not able to get my hands on multiple coupons and it is difficult getting out to do the deals so I miss plenty but I also score some 🙂 Thanks for the pick me up!

  4. I’ve mentioned before that lady that I see at Wags in Lisle – She’s there every Sunday, at the cosmetics counter, for hours, clipping coupons and figuring out how to stretch her money to buy things like tissues, vitamins, and the Depends that her sister uses. I’ve given her all the Depends that I could do deals for the past couple of months. She takes care of her ailing sister, and is on a pretty limited budget. She knows that I follow the coupon sites, and I tell her about deals that are online only since there’s no way in heck she owns a computer or would know how to use it. I don’t know her personally, but she’s a very sweet lady, and I’d love something really nice to happen to her.

    • Her name is Nancy. She is one amazing woman. She taught me how to use coupons when I first started working at Walgreens. She will literally be at the store for hours scouring the ads and coupons. Almost everything she buys she donates…. her favorite organizations are Sharing Connections (http://www.sharingconnections.org/) and Operation Support our Troops (http://www.osotamerica.org/). Both are based out of Lisle/ Downers Grove.

      It is amazing to see her on such a limited budget, but still doing so much to help others. Hope this helps…

      • Some people just have the heart for that. No matter how little money they have, they seem to find ways to pay it forward. There isn’t a greedy bone in that lady’s body. Learning little lessons from people like that make us all kinder people.

  5. Beth, if you think that woman would be open to it, mention the People’s Resource Center to her. There are locations in Wheaton and Westmont. I’ve never been to Wheaton, but I donate Depends and all sorts of personal care items to the Westmont location.

  6. She would say that there are so many people that need it more than her. That’s how she is. She clips her coupons and tries to buy things to donate too, even though she says her sister tells her that they don’t have the money to be spending on donations. She felt very uncomfortable with me giving her the Depends I got for her, she didn’t want me to drive around getting the deals, and waste my gas money. I don’t think she wanted to feel like anyone was making a fuss over her. She’s a nice lady.

  7. Hmm, how about something to do with school supplies? Its getting close to mid summer for the kids who start school in August, and I’m sure its a very difficult thing to try and figure out how to get your kids all those *required* school supplies, let alone anything else like clothes/shoes. Maybe there is an organization that accepts and distributes these to families?

    And the other thing that comes to mind is a student of mine. My husband and I run a community gymnastics program, and we have a student with some great potential but who’s family is in a tough place right now. Mom tries the best she can to keep her in class, but she misses a lot because she can’t make tuition. I’ve switched her to “weekly” payment since “per session” is very difficult for them, but I’ve yet to see her back this summer because mom wants to pay off last session first before she takes any more classes. And unfortunately, to be fair to other kids, I can’t offer a scholarship to the same student every session.

    I’ll keep thinking about this to try and come up with some more ideas. I loved that Women’s Shelter donation a few months ago!

  8. first…how genuinely giving of you to give away the $. i really like the way you think. there are countless worthy causes. i know you will pick one (or more) that speak to you. just to throw in my 2cents…i will nominate the cause of those in need that cant speak for themselves…the loving dogs and cats that wait patiently to be adopted. you name the shelter…there are so, so many great ones.

    • Without going into too many personal details, we do support a shelter with an annual contribution and others with automatic monthly donations. If you are looking for a REALLY easy way to donate larger amounts, have it broken down into monthly amounts – you will never miss that bit of cash. However, in this situation, I am looking for an individual or family who could benefit. You know, there are lots of people who won’t go to a food pantry, either because they don’t want to beg or somehow feel that other people have it worse.

  9. You could hang out at your favorite store and randomly pay for someone’s groceries, or if you go to a drive-thru, pay for the person behind you, or break your $100 into $20’s and anonymously mail it to people you know are struggling, or give it to a serviceman (or woman) that you see. Fun!

  10. I’ve been made aware of a single mom of three teenage sons that is being foreclosed on and is being forced to change counties next week. She’s in desperate need of food.

  11. Single mom + 3 children, she shouldn’t have any problem getting approved for food stamps, I hope she’s applied, if not, let her know that she totally should! That will really help her out! We got turned down, even though the only income we had was my husband’s unemployment (at the time), and we were being foreclosed on too. Apparently unemployment paid too much to be able to qualify our family, because we only have 1 child. But, if she’s alone, and she’s got 3, she shouldn’t have any problem qualifying.

  12. I’m trying all I can to send helpful suggestions to the woman, Beth. It’s a co-worker of a friend of mine. I’m on a very restricted diet, so my stockpile is really small and odd, so I was able to help her with toiletries and a little food, but her need is immediate. There are SO many people like her. I know we all know someone.

    And for anyone that loaded up on free fly paper at Walmart, that was on the troops’ high needs list last time I checked.

  13. Pingback: $100 Giveaway – 3rd time the charm? | deranged.me

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