Friday, December 10, 2010

Money money money!!!

Are you spending lots of it this month?

I'm not.

I've really been putting effort lately into saving money at the grocery store, and Christmas gifts. Coupons have been my friend for some time, as well as generic products and planning my meals around what foods (especially proteins) were on sale. A friend of mine recommended a site which has really been helpful to me:

Krazy Coupon Lady

Have you ever heard people celebrating their shopping trip where they walked away with $120 of stuff and paid $4.23?? Well this site explains how that kind of huge savings is accomplished. (Though I personally haven't gotten a deal like that yet! My best week was a little over $70 of stuff with about $13 out of my pocket.)

So I wanted to pass that nugget of info along to you in case you too are always looking out for ways to help your family's finances. It does take an investment of time. I would say about 1 hr. of planning for grocery trips... you have to look over the sales, find coupon match ups- either in the paper or online at the particular store site, or coupon sites. The Krazy Coupon lady does much of the match ups for you at the national stores but for my local grocery store, the "leg" (actually finger work!) work is up to me. I've also gotten great deals for Christmas gifts:

Bath and Body Works: FREE item (up to $13 value) with $10 min. purchase
and my BBW was having a buy 2, get 1 free sale, so I paid for 2 and received 2 FREE! =)

Hallmark: $5 off $5 purchase
and yes, I was that ultra cheapo hunting around for an item as close to $5 as I could find. = P Last week, I had two $10 off a $10 purchase, so I got a beautiful baby's first Christmas ornament for Leila for just a couple of bucks. Fear of 3rd child not having a traditional ornament and needing years of therapy to cope with the feelings of neglect....alleviated. ;) (TOTALLY JOKING!)

I've really gotten the biggest discounts at RiteAid. By combining manufacturers coupons, RiteAid coupons, either clipped out of the weekly flyer or from the Video Values program, along with the UP+ savings, I have really been stretching my weekly budget. And when you watch 20 Video values, you receive a $3 off a $20 coupon. Last month it was $4 off, and here is hoping that it goes back up in Jan.! Watching videos does take time (they are about 30 sec.s each)... but it produces real savings AND I can do this while nursing and cuddling Leila. In addition, RiteAid offers a special program for December "Gift of Savings" in which it's very easy to earn a $20 RiteAid gift card. Mine is in the mail already. There is also their single check rebate program. SO between allllll of that, I have been doing all my toiletry and household buying at RiteAid and been paying much less than even generic at WalMart. I have a family of 5 (fun to say that!) and have $80 weekly to work with. We've got to all be fed, cleaned, diapered etc. for $80 a week. So getting free toothpaste, cheap (but nice brands) shampoo, free razors, and diapers for at least 50% less than normal price is sooooo helpful.

The Krazy Coupon Lady, and I know many other sites, do a great job of breaking it all down for us so I won't go on any further. Just wanted to enlighten anyone who didn't already know that we can spend less!! It's takes time and prior planning. But the savings are significant and well worth it!

One last thing: every week that I do this, I get better at it. Just like everything else, practice makes perfect... so don't be discouraged if you don't save 75% on your loot at first. After you get home, take out your receipt and calculator, and figure out where you saved the most and where you didn't. ANY savings is better than none. But it's only a savings if you actually use/need the item. Don't buy something your family doesn't use just because it's cheap.

I think this is fun. And rewarding. I love coming home with my arms full of bags, but money still in my pocket. I figure out my exact savings and brag to my husband. He's really impressed with me. Every penny I save is one more he can spend on taking me on a date. =)



Marisa said...

GOOD for you! I know Im soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo into this! A good friend showed me how and all these sites in the spring this year. And WOW, I always tell her it NEVER gets old! Just like I got three travel hungry hungry hippo games for 72 cents yesterday! Went to Walgreens this am and got 8 rolls of Nice hallmark 50squ foot wrapping for 8 bucks and got 5 bucks back to go use there later! It is wonderful and insane and Im loving every min of it!! And great advice about just keep trying .. it is overwhelming at first and you figure out real fast the best places to go and who is coupon friendly and who isnt and how to make your deal the best!! Oh too.. wish I had Rite Aids here.. I read those deals and think WOW!! Anyways... Yay Couponing!! ha ha!

Kayte said...

I got a free Hungry Hippos travel size... that was a great coupon huh?! What other sites to you like, Marisa?

Marisa said...

Awesome Coupon!! And now Im trying to find the pictureka card game because supposedly you can find those for 5 bucks and those coupons work on those too! So that would be a completely free game.

I LOVE LOVE! She does grocery coupons but she posts alot of great retail coupons too! I find alot of very inexpensive deals for shoes, clothes, household products. And she does a TON of giveaways! Im not very "lucky" ha ha and dont normally win that kind of stuff but its worth a shot!! =) I love this one too but she does Meijer and Kroger matchups so that is why I love this one. Not sure if you guys have those up where you are.

Love Krazy Coupon Lady too.


Those are my main ones. =)

Kayte said...

No Meijer or Kroger here. I typically grocery shop at Price Chopper; haven't found a blog with that one yet.

Marisa said...

Ill be on the lookout for that one and if I find Ill forward it on to you. It took me a while to find one that does Meijers.. I love that place. so was pretty thrilled when I found it. Ill keep an eye out!

Marisa said...

I saw she does Price Chopper Match Ups. Not sure if Price Chopper is all over the place or just in a certain place.

Looks like a nice blog.. I found several posting on there today that interested me that I didnt see on my blogs I check.. AND it seems she individually lists out the Groupon deals in EACH major city! Sweet!

Kayte said...

Awesome!!!!!! Thank you for finding and sharing!!!

Marisa said...

No Problem! Have a great weekend! =)

Mrs. Reverend Doctor said...

I love, I'm lucky because right next to one another about 2 miles from my house is a CVS and Rite Aid and then a few blocks down is a Walgreens. However the best savings on food I get is from salvage stores, which may not be legal in your state. In Pa they are all run by Amish so only shelf stable items.

Rena said...

Just wanted to share with you my latest deals:

1 Butterball Turkey
6 boxes of Betty Crocker Potatoes
6 Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
4 Campbells Soups

Total out of pocket = less than $3 !!!!!!

Next one:
4 Rolls of 1000 sheet toilet paper
3 Snow globes
3 pairs of No Nonsense Knee highs
1 bottle of All laundry detergent
4 bags of Chex Mix (dark chocolate)

Total out of pocket = less than $6!!

On my blog I will soon be starting to
share local deals for our area stores.
(Hopefully will have it started soon)

Kayte said...

Rena, that will be great!

L, I have it made here too. Very conveneient. TWO RiteAids within 5 min.s, Walgreens, 2 WalMarts, Target, Aldis... I hardly ever drive more than 10 mintues at a time. Yet it's not a city feeling at all. I love our community.