Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Write Stuff

Guess what's in the back of my car?  Okay, I'll tell you.  22,032 pencils for our 2013 Operation Christmas Child packing party.

I always have a 'won't-go-above' price in mind for each item we put in our shoeboxes and prayerfully ask God to provide items within that price range.  Until last year that price for a pencil used to be 2 cents, but because of cost increases, I raised that to 4 cents.

I like to put 2 pencils in each box, so we really need 44,000 this year.  This week Office Max has a pack of 72 pencils (pictured above) on sale for $3.00.  This is just 4.1 cents per pencil--a pretty good deal.

The great thing is that they also have these on where you can get larger quantities.  If you spend at least $50, shipping is free and there is a code on the website that's good until Saturday that will give you $30 off on a $175 purchase.

If you sign up for Maxperks Rewards you get points toward future purchases.  And if you work in a school and can get a "teacher rewards card" you get $10 on every $75 purchase.

Oh, and you can also go through and get another 3% off on your order.  If you haven't signed up for eBates, you can click on this link to sign up and I'll get a little credit for referring you.  When you're going to shop online, you go to first and search for the store you want to shop at and they'll tell you how much you'll save.  At Office Max I saved an extra 3% which may not sound like much until you buy 22,032 pencils.  Then it adds up.  You can shop at any of the eBates stores and you'll get a check from them about once a quarter.  I've earned over $100 over the past year on things I was buying anyway.

So, with all of the discounts and finagling, I think I've got the cost of the pencils down to under 3 cents each.

Now that I've bought half of the total pencils I need, I'm trying to figure out how many more to buy.  I pray about this stuff all the time.  There may be some better deals at back-to-school time or from other sources.

On the other hand, I don't want to miss out on buying all I need if this is the best sale of the year.

Still praying and waiting for the 'write' direction.

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