Couponing: Making it Work for Me

Okay, so here’s my take on the whole couponing deal…I never was a big coupon person when it came to groceries, but now that seems to be all the rage. A few months ago, I figured maybe I should look into it a little and here’s the conclusion I came to…I decided putting in a little effort might go further than I initially thought. Now, I am NOT a coupon expert by any means, but I gave myself a few guidelines going into couponing. I decided that 1) I did not want to purchase items just for the sake of a good bargain. I wanted to only purchase items that my family actually uses and needs 2) I did not want to spend more than an hour gathering coupons and making my grocery shopping list each week. 3) I would buy bulk on certain items like wipes, toilet paper, and paper towels, but I just do not have the space nor the desire to turn my home into a warehouse…So with those three things in mind I did a little research and here’s what I came up with….When possible I pick up our local Sunday paper. It contains the coupon circulars like Red Plum and Smart Source. I also go online to the website www.couponmom.com. It is entirely free and I go to the section for printable coupons. (By the way, I have an email account strictly designated for online kind of things which I highly recommend. Just go to google and set up a gmail account. Its super easy and keeps your main email account free of spam!) In the printable coupons section, I see if there are any that interest me and print out what I want. I also go to my grocery store website which happens to be Target and I print out any of their coupons I need. Like many other grocery stores, they will let you combine a manufacturer coupon as well as a store coupon for the same item. I take my coupons and I store them in a binder I lovingly call, “The Grocery Cart” (more on that later). I usually clear my frig, gather my coupons, and make my list on Monday and shop on Tuesday. With this little effort I average a savings of $25-$35 a week…sometimes more. Now that may not seem like a whole lot, but stick with me, Ladies. Let’s say $30 savings a week, every week, four weeks a month, 12 months a year. That’s almost $1500 a year! I don’t know about you, but with that little effort, it’s worth it to me! Shoot that can go into savings or afford us a little extra family adventure. So that’s my take on the whole couponing trend. I want it to work for me, not consume me! Happy saving!!!

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