A few years ago we discovered the fun of filling plastic Easter eggs with small toys to make a bulkier filler for our Operation Christmas Child packing party boxes. This came about when I serendipitously found the eggs on the 90% off clearance sale at Target.
Each year since we've looked for more eggs to fill. Last year I took for granted I'd find them when the Walmart Easter clearance went to 75% off but there were none to be found in our area at either Target or Walmart. By God's grace, my daughter came to the rescue and found nearly 12,000 at Target stores in her area and God provided the rest from donations and the 90% off sale at Dollar General.
This year I started praying months ago for these Easter eggs--asking God to save some for us so we could buy them when they were reduced to at least 75% off. Our prayer team was praying about this also. God provided 29,016 filler toys for the eggs, so we really needed to pray in the eggs.
I was excited this year to find out about brickseek.com--an inventory checking site that allowed me to find the UPCs for the 48-packs of eggs I wanted and check to see what stores in my area and my daughter's area had a good inventory of them.
I anticipated Walmart's Easter clearance would go to 75% off today and their eggs, while a little smaller than those from Target, were a better deal with a package of 48 coming to just .49 at 75% off. So last night I sent out a last reminder for prayer support and asked the team to pray for 24,000 eggs today. I also sent a text to the manager of one of our local Walmarts who's always been so supportive of our packing party and asked him if I could get a better price than the 75% off if I bought all the eggs they had left (the inventory checker showed they had 150 packages) and he agreed to check their stock and let me know today.
This egg-cellent day started early when the Walmart manager texted me at 6:45am to tell me they had 150 of the 48-packs of eggs and some miscellaneous smaller packages. I asked if I could come to get them right away and he agreed. When I got to Walmart he surprised and blessed me with a gift card to pay for the eggs! After the three shopping carts full of eggs (7,248 plus) were rung up, the manager and two other employees helped me load them into my car.
When I got home I unloaded them into garbage bags and hauled them into the house. Then I had to consider my next move. The two Walmarts that had the largest supplies of eggs were quite a drive away--one was an hour and the other an hour and a half from Erie. I decided to call the one that supposedly had an inventory of 299 of the 48-packs.
God's favor was in evidence. Cindy, the helpful Walmart employee, checked the inventory and promised to ask the manager if I could get a discount if I bought them all. She called back soon to let me know the manager would allow me to purchase them for .40 instead of .49 and they would get them ready for me to pick up.
I was doubly blessed when my husband offered to drive with me without me even asking, and we quickly jumped in the car and took off. The tricky part is that our first stop would be the store I hadn't contacted. They reportedly had 176 of the packages but I didn't know how many I really needed in addition to those I was getting from the more distant store. I also didn't know how many would fit in the car while still leaving room for the other 299 packages.
I did some calculations and finally decided to try to get 85 packages. I was thrilled when we got into the store to find the packages were on the shelf in large boxes that would be perfect for transporting and storing them. I made short work of counting them out and loading a box on each of two carts. I went to customer service and asked to speak to a manager to see about getting a price reduction, but had no luck there. We got through checkout without a hitch, stowed the boxes in the back of our van, and headed out again.
At the next store we had to wait about a half hour for them to finish counting the eggs. They brought them to the front of the store all packaged in 10 nice, large boxes. After a quick checkout we attempted to fit them into the van without success. So...we had to open those nicely-packed boxes and put the packages into the van loose so they would all fit. In the end, we actually ended up with some extra space in the back seat!
Since my daughter lives only a few miles from the last store, we got to go visit and spend a few hours of snuggle and play time. Actually, that was the best part of the day. I mean, who couldn't smile at that face...
Praise God we ended the day with 25,776 eggs for an investment of just $161--only .6 cents each. Now I call that an egg-cellent day!