Well, after 4 days in the fermenter (since saturday) i took my first OG reading and it was 1.010 down from an original 1.050! Calculating out i should have an abv of around 5.2% which is just what i was expecting! I can't wait to rack to secondary this weekend! I even tried the beer and it tastes great! The only complaint i would have is that it's a little watered down of a taste but i'm thinking that will come around? Also thinking that maybe i didn't steep the grains long enough and maybe that's what's causing the weak flavor? Either way though i'm at least excited that my first batch so far is at least drinkable (even taking into account those pennies i left in there by accident to keep the boilover down).
I dunno anything about the pennies, however, from my experience and from what I've read on here "weak" or "watery" beer when you're tasting your hydro sample is pretty common with green beer. From the sounds of it, you've got a good beer going