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  1. #1

    Pamela & Kelleigh - - Let's dish

    So, I'm very curious about this whole couponing thing. I understand the principles behind it, and have read some of the info blogs that you've linked up before. What I don't understand is how you figure out all the deals. Do you have site(s) that you frequent so you know what's on sale & where to find a coupon that you'll need? Do you just get your sales papers and then go in search of coupons that'll work with what's on sale? Tell us how you do it, pretty please.

    You gals have really inspired me and I want to give this a go. It seems so crazy how much we're spending in groceries although I consider myself to be rather thrifty.

    Many thanks for whatever help you're able to give us





  2. #2
    Christine, you could also check out the blog of a friend of mine, Debbie Hill. She became really into couponing and saving etc. etc. and seems to be doing a great job working the system!

  3. #3
    Hanging with the Chicks! jacinda's Avatar
    People say "It's the thought that counts, not the gift", but couldn't people think a little bigger?
    Couponing doesn't work in New Zealand. Would be great if it did though - my grocery bill is always huge.





  4. #4
    No coupons here either I am afraid. Kelleigh is the queen of couponing here. You might like to check out her blog too.
    Sharyn





  5. #5
    Heavens, no, we don't do this all by ourselves! There are a ton of coupon blogs out there written by women who do all the work for us. They even link up the coupons to use so we can print them off! They tell us exactly how much we will be paying at the register, etc.

    The bottom line is that you wait for a sale, THEN you use manufacturers coupons and store coupons (at the same time) to stock up on something at rock bottom prices.

    I purchase 4 Sunday papers a week (although I've been slacking lately) for the coupon inserts: Smartsource, Redplum, P&G. Sometimes, if I know we are going to my in-laws, I will only buy 3 and ask my MIL for hers. My Sunday only costs .99, so it's no biggie. You could always ask neighbors for theirs, but I haven't worked up the courage yet.

    PLUS, I print internet printable coupons. AND, keep my eye out for coupons at the store, AND load my grocery store club card with ecoupons. Many stores do ecoupons. You should go online to your store's site to see if they participate in Cellfire or Shortcuts. (Safeway and affiliates do!)

    My favorite coupon sites right now (sorta can't coupon without them):

    • The Krazy Coupon Lady - They have a 10 Days to Become a KCL series that is awesome! They taught me everything, and they post the grocery store deals.
    • Money Saving Mom - posts the deals, plus has some awesome, inspirational stories about their financial journey. They just finished saving 100% of a down payment for their first home! (She's migrating her site to WordPress today, so click back later if you can't get in right away.)
    • Hip to Save - sometimes cheesy, doesn't usually post the grocery store deals, but always lets us know about the freebies we can snag. She is the reason I saved 50% on toys at Target in December. (Hello?)
    Really, though, you want to find a coupon blog that is local to you and tells you about stores in your area. For me, that would be Frugal Living NW. I live in Oregon, and these gals post deals for the Oregon, SW Washington area.

    There is a gal who is just starting up a Frugal Map which will list all of the coupon blogs by state. It should be up to date soon! (She just launched it last week, I think.) http://thefrugalmap.bargainbriana.com/

    The reason you want to find a local blog is because they will list stores in your area (duh) AND you can read the comments to see what other locals are saying about specific stores. Maybe a certain store is all out of the .10 pancake mix, so you don't need to bother going to that one, etc.
    Last edited by kelleighr; 01-24-2010 at 09:26 PM.
    Kelleigh
    My store at The Digichick



  6. #6
    Some of you will say, "But there are never coupons for what I buy!" That's what I used to think, too. PLUS, I thought that the coupons were only for junk. What I've discovered is that those inserts sneak in healthy coupons, too! If you don't like the junk coupons, give them away or become a "coupon fairy" by leaving them next to the item at the store!

    Here is a list of the things I will never pay for again or won't pay more than .25 for:

    • disposable razors
    • toothbrushes
    • shampoo, conditioner and styling aids (although sometimes I rotate with stuff I paid money for)
    • boxed cereal (my spending limit is .50 - and that's for Kashi!)
    • granola bars - Nature Valley (and the nut clusters)
    • Hunts tomato sauce
    • cake mix, brownie mix, cookie mix, frosting
    • Nabisco crackers (Wheat Thins/Triscuts, etc)
    • Progresso Soup (which I never bought before couponing)
    • Pancake mix
    • canned green beans
    • canned corn
    • frozen veggies (green beans, peas, mixes, etc)
    There's probably a ton more, but you get my point.

    By saving money on these things, I can afford to spend money on more fresh produce and natural/whole foods. (And, there ARE coupons for those, but do you really need them? Good grief. You're spending 98 for a head of lettuce. That's not going to break the bank.)

    I'm getting Kraft Cheese for free today! Hee, hee! STOCK UP time!
    Kelleigh
    My store at The Digichick



  7. #7
    Oh, and just a tip - I never used to buy brand names (Green Giant, Yoplait, etc). I always bought the store brand, thinking I was saving money. What I have learned is that the national brands (those with the coupons in the inserts) go on sale MUCH more frequently than the store brands, and when you hit a sale + coupons you can get those national brands for a LOT less than store brands.

    One day, I was standing in front of the Cream of Mushroom soup at Walmart. I was looking at the Campbells, which was on sale (without coupons) for .48 a can. Good price, no matter who you are. The lady next to me stood there for a minute or so and then reached for the Walmart brand, which was 78 a can. SAME thing, except she didn't even consider Campbells because she thought it would be too expensive.

    For the record, I had a coupon (and there were a ton of them out in November!). I bought 4 cans of Cream of Mushroom/Chicken for $1. Hee, hee! STOCK UP time!!
    Kelleigh
    My store at The Digichick



  8. #8
    I am a mad crazy lady today so I don't have a lot of time to post but, wanted to pop in and say that like, Kelleigh, I am a coupon diva! I have been using The Grocery Game http://www.thegrocerygame.com for 4 1/2 years now and love it! It has saved us so much money! It is not a free service, it is like $25.00 per quarter for me to get 3 store shopping lists for my area. I have HEB (grocery store), Walgreens and CVS. They offer lists for just about every area in the US (I think).

    We will never pay full price for groceries and/or toiletries and cleaning products again! When I do *happen* to run out of something and have to buy it full price....it hurts! Seriously!

    And....the founder of The Grocery Game just happens to be fixing to appear on The Food Network this weekend. Hopefully you haven't missed it! This will tell you lots more about the couponing game.

    Watch Teri on Food Network's "Unwrapped"!
    January 23rd, 24th and 25th.
    Check your local station for time.

    Creating for:
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    Chelle's Creations, Laura Banasiak, Truman Studio, Busy Bee Designs and Flergs
    Currently guesting for: Studio Basic
    My Blog

  9. #9
    twentytinytoes
    Unregistered / Not Logged In
    OOooh this is interesting. If you would have asked my last month how much we spent on groceries in a given month I would have thought maybe 500-600 but the other day I went through and actually added it up and was SHOCKED to see that in 1 month, 30 days we spent 1,041.93 And we didn't even really buy anything major or anything that we don't normally buy.

  10. #10
    Thanks for the links, girls!
    I am going to DVR the Unwrapped episode. Seems like I signed up for a trial w/ The Grocery Game a few years ago, but ended up canceling it.

    I read through your blog, Kelleigh (and Pamela), and noticed that you shopped alot at Safeway. I didn't know what that was until I googled and discovered that another store here, Randall's, is in that same company...or something like that. It looks like I'll be able to get alot of the same deals. I visited Saving with Shellie last night and printed a bunch of coupons. I'm going to head out in just a bit and I'll report back





  11. #11
    Dang I wish coupons happened here in NZ but sadly they don't and our grocery bill a month is $1200NZD (about 850 USD) to prove it... and thats just with the four of us! I hate grocery shopping as a result!
    Last edited by cherpea; 01-24-2010 at 01:30 PM.
    Cheryl

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  12. #12
    The Money Saving Mom link isn't working. I found a fan page on Facebook but the link to the main site isn't working from there either. Must have a glitch in a server or something. But anyway, there IS a FB fan page and there might be others that have fan pages.

  13. #13
    I'm looking at Kelleigh's list and thinking I have to get serious about this. I played with it a bit, but need to get serious!!! WOW!


    I didn't want to be left out, so here I am. Thanks, Pamie!





  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by donnawells View Post
    The Money Saving Mom link isn't working. I found a fan page on Facebook but the link to the main site isn't working from there either. Must have a glitch in a server or something. But anyway, there IS a FB fan page and there might be others that have fan pages.

    She's migrating her site to WordPress today, so it's probably down because of that! Keep checking back!! Crystal is the reason my blog gets so many hits! I her!
    Kelleigh
    My store at The Digichick



  15. #15
    ooooh, this is going to be ADDICTING!!
    Here were my super-great deals today:
    Honey Nut Cheerios - 50 cents a box, 2 boxes
    Lever 2000 soap - free (will donate cause we don't use this kind)
    Quaker Instant Oatmeal - free
    Annie's Mac & Cheese boxes - free, 2 boxes
    Dove deodorant - 2 for 5.50, then got $2 cash rewards
    which I spent on Scott 6 pack paper towels - $1.49 after coupons and cash rewards applied.

    WOO HOO! I also got several things on sale, but these were the super-great deals.
    We've been spending about $700-800 a month on groceries, and I'm hoping to shop smarter, plan better and cut this in half.





  16. #16
    Good job, Christine! I agree that it's addicting.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by ccouch View Post
    ooooh, this is going to be ADDICTING!!
    Here were my super-great deals today:
    Honey Nut Cheerios - 50 cents a box, 2 boxes
    Lever 2000 soap - free (will donate cause we don't use this kind)
    Quaker Instant Oatmeal - free
    Annie's Mac & Cheese boxes - free, 2 boxes
    Dove deodorant - 2 for 5.50, then got $2 cash rewards
    which I spent on Scott 6 pack paper towels - $1.49 after coupons and cash rewards applied.

    WOO HOO! I also got several things on sale, but these were the super-great deals.
    We've been spending about $700-800 a month on groceries, and I'm hoping to shop smarter, plan better and cut this in half.
    Woot!! Awesome job! Don't be surprised if you find yourself posing your groceries for photos! My husband doesn't even flinch anymore. It's crazy addicting to coupon!

    AND, did you see my current grocery budget? $200 a month for a family of 4!! Pretty amazing, huh?!
    Kelleigh
    My store at The Digichick



  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by kelleighr View Post
    AND, did you see my current grocery budget? $200 a month for a family of 4!! Pretty amazing, huh?!
    WOW! I just went and printed myself some coupons...I think I might try, too!
    Mel
    blog

  19. #19
    Dang, Kelleigh, that's probably what we spend for a week!

    Do you go to several places, though? I don't know if I have time for all that...there aren't enough hours in the day as it is. lol


    I didn't want to be left out, so here I am. Thanks, Pamie!





  20. #20
    I've been wanting to try this for a while, and I really need to start soon. I have a friend who has just started to clip coupons (I've been using coupons since I was married, habit from my mom, just not utilizing the savings as I could have been) so I'm hoping to try out Von's (our Safeway) with her. Hoping to get into a habit of going to 2-3 stores at a time with her to keep me company and keep me motivated. lol
    ..::Kelly::..

    Happy to be creating for:

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