Okay, I tried couponing before. It was a bust.
I couldn't make it work locally, and many of the couponing sites I was using were based in cities far, far away.
And I didn't have time. And I always seemed to forget to buy the Sunday paper.
And then my friend Cheryl mentioned that I should visit a couponing site based locally here in OKC. And Carrie over at www.couponcloset.net has changed my life.
Well, she definitely has changed the look of my pantry.
Replacing a lot of items lost in last month's storms was beginning to get pricey. Following her advice, I've slashed our food budget in a most amazing way. Just yesterday I walked out of Homeland with a $0.73 bill - items purchased included two bags of rice, a giant bottle of Mott's apple juice, some Campbell's Skillet Creations sauces, and two Kikkoman seasoning packets. I was SO proud!
Yes, it does involve planning. Yes, you do exchange a bit of time for the money saved. But in the evenings instead of scrolling through Facebook updates and Pinterest pins, I visit Carrie and a few other couponing pages. And I find some deals I might be able to scoop up on the way home from work or daycare. (Usually pre-daycare pickup - I'm still a rookie and my two preschoolers are not patient enough yet for my aisle searching and calculating!)
I'm even more proud in the moments where I find deals myself. Carrie has not only led me in a new direction, she has sort of passed on a skill set for me to venture out into the deal-finding world solo mio.
(Confession: I still can't swing the CVS and Walgreens deals. The bucks system baffles me.)
Here are a few things I've stumbled upon in the past week of my couponing adventure:
I found 100 count Up&Up Uncoated Paper Plates on clearance for $1.53, and had a Target printable coupon for $1.00 off two. Final price: $1.03 for 100 count plates.
I also purchased a 7.5 oz bottle of Up&Up Clear Hand Soap for $.89, and had a Target printable coupon for $0.50. Final price: $0.39.
Up&Up Baby Wipes are $1.99 each for 88 wipes. I had a Target printable coupon for $1.00 off two. Final price: $1.49, which per wipe beats my Aldi pricemark.
I also put together a Target printable coupon for the purchase of two Hefty Slider bags (it also works with the purchase of two Reynolds items) with two manufacturer coupons for Hefty Slider bags. It left me with a final price of about $1.00 for 22 quart size bag boxes. That's comparable, I believe, to the recent Dollar Tree deal on those when you look at price per bag (and factor in some saved gas!).
Today I'm working on a deal for Hormel Natural Choice Lunchmeat. We love that brand! I have a manufacturer's $1.00 off two coupon, as well as 2 Target $.50 coupons. The Target price is $2.99, which with the stacked coupons will be brought to $1.99 for an 8oz pack. Maybe not your pricemark for lunchmeat, but again, our family loves this brand and it's a deal for us!
Last night I was able to pick up Reynold's Pastel Baking Cups for $0.84, with the Sunday, June 9th newspaper coupon for $0.55 off, final price: $.29.
French's Spicy Brown Mustard was on sale for $1.25. With the Sunday, June 9th newspaper coupon for $.75 off, final price: $0.50.
I found a deal on Hellman's Mayo - these were in my very rookie days, so the details are fuzzy, but I had a Hellmans' coupon from newspaper coupons I got from a friend (not sure of the dates, sorry!), but Homeland had the large squeeze bottles on sale for 2 for $7, which ended up being $3.50 - $1.00 off doubled coupon. Final price: $1.50
This is fun. And I feel like I'm really providing well for my family on a shoestring budget.
Thanks so much, Carrie! I feel like you have a ministry that touches me, my family, and so many others. Thank you for sharing your gifting with us!