Friday, October 1, 2010

You don't have to be a crazy coupon lady to save on groceries...but it helps!!

I am not a big fan of grocery shopping.  Quite honestly, I don't know many people who are.  But I have learned the secret to efficient shopping trips that keep more money in  my pocket.  Through reading blogs by the Coupon Mom, I Love Publix, and various other coupon sources like RedPlum and SmartSource, I discovered the best sources for coupons and the best deals from the stores.  My goal now is to share what I have learned with you in hopes that you will start keeping more money in your pocket like me!

For starters, you should really invest in the Sunday paper.  It is the best source of coupons.  Don't like cutting coupons you say?  Well, then print them online!  We'll get to that in a minute.  If you are going to commit time and energy to clip your coupons the old fashion way, follow these tips:
  • Only clip coupons for things you will actually use!  If you wouldn't normally buy it, don't clip it!  What to do with the extra coupons?  Donate them to your local food bank for their purchasing needs, share them with a friend who might could use them or donate them to the military.  Find details at www.ocpnet.org
    • Another favorite of mine is to be a "coupon fairy".  I know this sounds crazy, but sometimes I take coupons that I am not going to use with me to the grocery store.  Then I find that item and place the coupon on it so someone else can use it.  It's kinda fun!
  • Invest in an organizer.  You can get them cheap at WalMart, Target or pretty much any other store.  Sort your coupons by type and put them in order by date so you don't let them expire!
If you don't like clipping you can print online coupons from several sources.  RedPlum and SmartSource are two great ones.  www.CouponMom.com is an excellent source as you can search by state for coupons available in your area, plus there are links to all of the major coupon sources as well as some links for freebies!  And the freebies are really cool!  You have to sign up on each individual website, but to date I have received freebies from Pantene shampoo, Prilosec, Head & Shoulders shampoo and Jergens body lotion.  Most of them will send you periodic coupons for their products as well. 

If you are a Publix fan, which I've had to learn to be as there are virtually no other grocery stores in Florida, you can visit http://www.iheartpublix.com  for their weekly deals, BOGO's (buy one, get one) and Publix coupons.  If you are a Southwest Florida resident, i.e., Lee or Collier county I know, you can use Publix and any other supermarket coupons at Sweetbay as they accept competitor coupons.

By combining coupons with Publix and Sweetbay sales and BOGO's I spent only $115 this week on groceries.  Last week I spent $98.  And I am buying brand names for most items.  My list includes all of our paper products, medicines, pantry items, meats and our dog food!  My list this week even includes items I plan to donate in our company Food Bank Drive.  Here's what I was able to purchase this week:

(2) 24 packs of Zephyrhills waters
1 gallon Zephryhills water
40 ct package Advil
2 boxes Revlon haircolor
1 gallon TG Lee milk
6 pack Bounty Basic paper towels
Whole Rotisserie chicken
1 liter Coke
2 boxes spaghetti noodles
2 cans Hunt's spaghetti sauce
12 pk Charmin toilet tissue
1 roll Glad Press 'n' Seal wrap
2 lbs fresh green beans
5 lbs fresh ground chuck
1/2 gallon Almond Breeze almond milk
1 bag roasted pistachios
2 boxes Kraft mac 'n' cheese
2 boxes Old El Paso soft taco dinner kits
1 box Old El Paso fajita dinner kit
1 box Old El Paso enchilada dinner kit
1 box Cheerios cereal
1 box Cookie Crisp cereal
1 box Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal
1 loaf Nature's Own bread
1 box salt
1 gallon canola oil
1 gallon Mott's Apple Cider
2 jars Ragu spaghetti sauce
1 bottle Listerine
1 bottle Crest ProHealth
1 tube Jergens Natural Glow lotion
2 tubes Jane lip tint
1 tube Jane lipstick
1 bag Biljac dog food
2 dog toys

Here are some additional tips for you to save money:
  • Get your antibiotics at Publix - they are FREE!
  • Fill your prescriptions at WalMart for less - yes, this sounds like their commercial, but it is true!  Most 30-day prescriptions are only $4 and you can get many 90-day refills for only $10!
  • Check manufacturer websites for more coupons - Kraft, Kellogg's, General Mills, even Pupperoni!
  • Check manufacturer websites for prescription discounts as well. I have found discounts for Lipitor (for my mom), Aciphex and Nexium.   
With a little patience, your efforts will be greatly rewarded.  I have reduced our monthly grocery bill by 50% and my prescription bill by about 30%.  Smart shopping = less money spent = happier purses!

2 comments:

  1. I do the "coupon fairy" too. I need to get an organizer. Wyatt's might kill me if I quit going there for prescriptions. Mine are only $3 copay so that is nice.

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  2. That's great Jennifer! Wish I could get prescriptions that cheap! At least I get the WalMart $4 ones.

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