Please tell me that you know the reference to “Jelly-of-the-Month Club.” I’m just going to assume that if you’re reading my blog, you are familiar with the infamous scene in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation where Clark is expecting a huge bonus from his boss so he can build his family a swimming pool, only to be surprised with the “gift that keeps on giving all year long.”
Well, around here, my husband and I have our own “Jelly-of-the-Month Club” gifts. See … back when we were first dating, and I was a single girl with a mortgage and a car payment and student loans, living on a single salary, we would sit down on payday to balance our checkbooks, and after I had set aside my grocery budget, gas budget, and incidental expenses, my balance was, predictably, $20. It was usually a dark day … check to the bank … organize the bills, write the checks, seal the envelopes, and kiss my income good-bye. That $20 had to seriously stretch.
At the same time, my husband had just graduated from college, had a six month grace period on his student loans, already owned his car, and was paying minimal rent while trying to figure out if we were the real deal or not. Read: had virtually no expenses and a brand new salary. With full benefits, mind you.
So, in those early days, his was the fun money that we used for road trips and vacations. Exciting dates and shopping excursions. Don’t get me wrong … I had no complaints. He surprised me with weekend getaways. He even swept me away to Los Angeles one day to catch a boat to Santa Catalina Island and propose to me in paradise. Money well spent.
After we got engaged, but before we married bank accounts, we decided it would be smart to continue to live on one salary and save the other for a rainy day. This worked out splendidly for 11 months of the year … but come Christmas time, there was only one of us with the spending power the spoil the other. So, for those first couple of Christmases, I was spoiled with gift after extravagant gift. And my husband … well, he received a Coupon Book FULL of really thoughtful sentiments. He dubbed it his “Jelly-of-the-Month Club,” and I pointed out that his gifts would keep on giving … long after Christmas day came to an end.
Well … it’s been years since the Coupon Book has been seen around this house. But as you know, our new bookkeeper likes to keep us honest. So, I’ll let you in on a little secret. I just spent the entire day coming up with some of the BEST coupons. Ever. (And since my husband has officially stopped reading my blog as he pursues his big fancy degree and studies all the time, I think my secret is safe with you.)
From Getaway Golf Vacations to Spa Weekends in Palm Springs. This is not the Coupon Book of two young kids just starting out. This is the Coupon Book of all Coupon Books … the “Fruit Preserves-of-the-Month” Club, if you will.