Hello, and welcome! My name is Christine Springer. That's me in the photo from an appearance on Good Morning Arizona in 2013.
There are three big things that changed my life in the past three years.
The first one is extreme couponing.
In 2011, I saw the television show "Extreme Couponing" and was intrigued, to say the least.
If the people profiled on the show could do that stuff, I just KNEW I could become an extreme couponer.
Like any new skill you want to learn, couponing has a learning curve. It took me about six months to get really good at it.
I learned a lot from coupon bloggers. I also learned a lot through my own epic failures.
There were several times when I wound up asking for my coupons back from the cashier and leaving all the merchandise on the counter because things just did not work out the way I expected.
Failure is just an illusion, though, because it really taught me a lot about what NOT to do. My failures have become part of my coupon strategy today.
The first year I spent extreme couponing, I acquired a lot of stuff for very little money.
What extreme couponing taught me is that the world is indeed an abundant place.
That also happens to be in line with my spiritual beliefs. Sometimes we have a hard time really SEEING the abundance because of what we THINK it should look like.
When you pay attention to the details, like those .25 coupons, it is really amazing what happens. It's like the the Universe opens up and pours out abundance all over you, in the form of food, personal care products, and household items.
With coupons, abundance means never having to worry about feeding your family. It means never having pay full price for your Tide (if you're a Tide snob, I totally get it!) and cleaning products.
The first year I might have gotten caught up in the sheer entertainment of extreme couponing.
That was okay, too because I wound up donating over $1000 of food, diapers, baby formula, personal care items and household items.
It felt awesome to just give that stuff away, knowing that it would all be used and it would go to people who needed it.
Try handing your friends a tube of your free toothpaste and see what happens. They think you're crazy.
Are you trying to tell them something? No, it's just that you have so much free toothpaste that you want to share.
The second thing that changed my life is the Paleo eating plan.
In 2012, I had already mastered extreme couponing. However, we (my Mom lives with me) were still eating the Standard American Diet ("SAD").
In June 2012, my Mom went into the hosptial for an infection. At that time, she was disabled and had trouble with an open wound on her foot. It just never seemed to get any better. It seemed her doctors at the time could only recommend to stay off her foot and keep the wound clean in hopes that it would close up eventually.
She had been in the hospital three or four times by June of 2012 and was having trouble with MRSA. She had been on some nasty antibiotics and was heading toward amputation of her right foot if the infections did not get under control.
That infection, it turns out, was something that her immune system should have taken care of.
She was also diabetic. Her sister was diabetic, as were a lot of other family members.
I was also feeling frustrated about my own weight and health. I had been depressed after some very difficult periods of time in my life. Both of these incidents made it very clear that I had to make some big changes or find myself in the same poor health as my Mom.
I knew I was ready for a big change, but I wasn't sure what that looked like in reality.
One day, I was looking at one of the coupon blogs I regularly read, and saw that two of the women coupon bloggers were going Paleo.
I thought it was odd, because these two women were talking about Paleo being more expensive than the SAD. It didn't seem like you could reconcile eating healthy with coupons. They had some good tips and it was a place to start.
I did my own research on Paleo, and WOW. The results people were having were remarkable. It seemed too good to be true: the weight would fall off if I ate less processed foods?
If you're thinking, "DUH," I don't blame you. I just didn't know any better. Sure, we're all told to eat more fruits and vegetables and exercise, but none of that stuff had ever resulted in lasting weight loss for me.
I decided to give it a try starting the next day. I decided I would go ONE day without eating wheat, corn, soy or dairy. I was so proud of myself for sticking to it that it then became two days, and eventually it was just the way I ate.
I didn't try to do it all at once. As I gradually learned more about the foods in my pantry, I made different decisions about what to eat and what to buy.
I also worried about the cost, but I felt confident that there was a way to use coupons and still save money on healthy foods.
Sure enough, there are plenty of options for healthy and Paleo foods, and I will share all my secrets with you here on this blog.
The third thing that changed my life is crossfit.
Sometime in early 2013, I was at Target loading my latest extreme couponing deals into my trunk.
I looked up, and noticed my shopping cart was sailing down the hill toward the side of someone's shiny new SUV.
I didn't even think about it: I just took off running after the cart, caught up with it, and saved the side of that pretty SUV.
And then I realized that it didn't feel too bad to be able to run. That 32 lbs I'd lost made it a lot easier to run after the cart.
I hated physical training the the Army, especially running. So it seemed odd to me that for the first time in my life, it felt good to run.
And then someone told me about crossfit, and on July 20, 2013, I visited Wildfire Crossfit to give it a try.
The first time I went for a workout, I got sick and had to stop. I didn't get enough rest the night before, nor did I eat enough before the workout.
But I didn't quit. I went back, and then eventually joined as a member. I've been a crossfitter since then, and I absolutely love it.
This blog is just one outcome of mixing three of my favorite things. I have been thinking about how to turn my couponing obsession into a business for several years.
There are already a lot of bloggers who do a great job at posting deals and I didn't want to reinvent the wheel. If anything, I wanted to build on what they were already doing.
Wildfire started a Paleo challenge in January 2013. Someone mentioned that eating Paleo was too expensive, and I offered to teach a class.
And then, the idea for CFP was born.
Since we're just starting out, I am will be posting Sprouts matchups each week for the Paleo eating plan. I'll be focusing on the Phoenix area for now. I also want to add a list for Fry's, too.
I will also share other deals and information as it relates to Paleo.
Thanks for reading this novel! If you have questions, contact me at ChristineESpringer [at] gmail.com