Thursday, June 30, 2011

Couponing: How I Love Thee

I watched the Extreme Couponing show on TLC in December.  I was hooked.  I watched Joanie Demer and thought, "I can do that!"  Now, I knew that the extreme couponing on the show was more then I cared to delve into.  I didn't have a desire to fill seven carts with groceries, buy hundreds of candy bars, or an entire cart full of deodorant.  But save money?  Yes please!  Stock up on diapers and laundry detergent?  Sign me up!  Help me be able to be a stay at home Mama?  Uhhh, DUH!  YES, YES, and YES!  So I started buying Sunday papers, bought a binder, subscribed to All You magazine, and starting surfing the internet for help on how to navigate this world of coupons.  It took a little time and I still have a lot to learn but I am saving!  I have a stockpile and it feels good to know that I have enough of some items to last a year or more.  I am not going to dedicate this entire blog to coupons and saving money, but I will share some shopping trips with you and share links for sites that have helped me.  My top three favorites are:

The Krazy Coupon Lady

Southern Savers

Melissa's Bargains

The Extreme Couponing show has many people asking how they do it and thinking that they too can save 99% at the grocery store.  And you can....if you want to devote hours and hours to it and spend money on clipped coupons.  But if you just want to save 50-70% on average, then start buying the sunday paper (I buy 2-4 papers each week, some folks buy more, but I've found that 3-4 is ideal for me) and printing some coupons from the internet and use a blog to help you match weekly sales with your coupons.  This is how you get the most bang for your buck.  My goal is usually to save at least 50%.  I also suggest choosing ONE drugstore to master if you are just beginning.  I think CVS is the easiest to get the hang of.  Basically, each week you can earn ExtraBucks for purchasing certain items and then you can use those ExtraBucks like cash for your next purchase.

I set a budget.  $40 a week for groceries, $20 a week for drugstore shopping.  Basically $60 a week for groceries, diapers, toiletries, make-up, etc.  I've been telling Chris that I was going to start this budget for months.  But I mean business now!  ;)  Last week was my first real attempt and I did pretty good.  My total for both was 64.78 (so 4.78 over, but pretty good for my first serious attempt!) for 178.26 worth of products.  So I saved 63%. Here's what I got:

This was my grocery store shopping, plus ice cream.  I spent $51.59 for $113.72 of product-for 55% savings.  I did buy 8 detergents but that's because they were 1.49 each.  Laundry detergent is my favorite item to stock up on.  For some reason my laundry quadrupled when I had a baby!  I can't imagine moms of twins, triplets, etc!

And this was my drug store shopping.  There was another Iced Coffee drink and there are two packs of Twizzlers (Chris' favorite candy!).  The coffee drinks and Dove Men Soap were free and the Brilliant tampons were a money maker!  I spent $13.19 for $61.54 of product-so I saved 79%!  I have $1 in +UP rewards for Rite Aid, 7RR for Walgreens, and 9.79 in ExtraBucks for CVS.  This will help to "roll over" to next weeks trips.

I am going to try my best to stick to this budget.  So that it feels more and more like a habit.  I will try to post my totals each week.

No comments:

Post a Comment