Saturday, February 28, 2009

Weekly groceries...give me a break!

Here is my weekly Pierce's grocery trip. As you may recall, after shopping last week I only had 25 cents left in the envelope until next Friday. While I didn't need much this week (handy since the deals were blah), I did receive my tax refund. I decided to give myself a break and do my normal shopping (no going overload) for groceries and use a little refund money to pay for it. That way I won't be tempted to 'borrow' from another fund to finance the food.

The store had Lenten fish specials that I did pick up, as well as pork chops on sale pretty cheap. Combined with the other items, it looks like a typical week for us. I will cook the frozen pizzas to save on a pizza night out, and otherwise I am trying to use stuff from the stockpile in the freezer. I am surprised there is still so much in there!

My coupon and sale savings was $20.86, and the oop (out of pocket) total was $58.57. Total savings of 26%.

Waiting for more coupons in the Sunday paper, and Walgreen's this week! Have a good week!

A 2nd successful Kmart trip!!

Here it is folks, my second trip to Kmart to use their double coupons to my advantage. I will list my deals for you after coupons.

Freebies: 4 boxes pantyliners, 1 bag razors, 1 toothpaste, 1 tweezers, 1 Buddies soap.
19 cents: 1 clean & clear cleaner
40 cents: 1 box hot chocolate
50 cents: 4 boxes Pop Tarts
80 cents: 1 bag cookie mix
$1 each : 2 jugs laundry soap
$1.29: Tampax
$1.50 each: 3 bottles Benefiber

My total before any coupons was $65 ish (and change), my after coupon total including taxes was $11.95. This means it was a savings of 82%. Definitely worth the time!

Sure it took a little longer than a 'normal' trip to the store, but I did pre-plan which coupons I would use as well. To me, that extra time was worth the savings! Plus, this is all stuff I will be able to use. Got quite the shoppers high from this trip!

Besides Jenny (since I know your stash), how did everyone else do with the Kmart doubles this week? Leave me a note.

Next up will be a (little) grocery shopping today and Walgreen's on Tuesday. I got the Walgreen's ad~ lots of good deals to be had next week!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

My blah Walgreen's trip

Well, I wasn't too excited by this weeks ad. I just can't even make myself buy any more Fusion razors right now, even when they are free or a moneymaker. I think I will give my coupons away for those. I don't think there were any super dooper deals this week, but I still managed to spend a bit. Here's the picture....
The best food deal I could find was the Velveeta shells that my kids love 3/$5. The foil wrap was free, and the 20 free photos are there as well. Otherwise, I got ibuprofen BOGO, and tums (not pictured). Spent around $20 after coupons, but I had a gift card I had earned from that I used. All in all it was $7.22 oop, but not that exciting.

I will be heading back to Kmart later in the week to pick up a few more freebies.

I spent Sunday at the mall in Madison with the family. I took a few minutes on the computer before we left looking for deals and I managed to get $5 off a $5 purchase at JC Penney's, a free pair of underwear at Victoria's Secret, and a free 1oz lotion at VS too. It definitely made that trip worthwhile!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Kmart and the doubles!

Let me tell you, I was so freakin' excited about this trip! Lots 'o freebies to be had at Kmart!

This half of my loot shows the 2 kotex, 4 blistex, and 4 packs of bic razors that were FREE! The Lever soap was 24 cents, Secret deodorant and Gillette body wash were 49 cents each and the 2 poptarts were 50 cents each!

This half of the purchases were a little more (it wouldn't fit nice in one picture). The 3 Jergens lotions, 3 bounce dryer sheets, and one laundry soap were $1 each. 4 boxes of Wheat Thins $1.30 each, 2 tampons $1.50 each, coffee mate $1.79, lever soap $3.29, Diapers 6.99. The Benefiber was a rip-off- I'm pretty sure it ran up wrong. It was 8.39.

My total oop was $45.46. Sounds like a lot I know, but before coupons it was $111.67!! It was a savings of 61%.

I would have saved more, but Dave wanted to try the Benefiber so I blame him. Plus I got the pampers as a baby gift for little Ben:)

A great trip I've decided. I may even run back to use a couple more freebie items, if I feel like making the trip. Happy shopping to you!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekly grocery deals

Wow, another great week for grocery deals. The good news is that I stayed within my weekly $70 budget(within a buck or two). Of course the bad news is that I went over budget the last couple weeks and only have $0.25 left in the grocery envelope. Oops. I have been thinking about the grocery budget and have decided to up it a little bit. Since I'm still trying to stock up the cupboard, I feel an increase is reasonable. I'll let you know what the magic number will be when I decide.

Above is my Walmart trip for the week. I love to put this all on the table and point to each item that is free to show Dave. He is truly amazed! Freebies are the Cascade, 2 bags chips, 4 box baking soda, Ziplocs, and 3 pouches of Tuna. Coupons for several other items. Before coupon total was 51.87, final oop was $32.77. I saved $19.01 in coupons! Total savings of 37%!!

Here is the Pierce's run. Not as many coupons here, but they did have mega sales on the store brand items. We even splurged on some steaks for dinner one night! Several stock up items, noodles, juice, hot dogs, and a big tub of margarine on sale. Total oop $43.76, sale and coupons combined saved $18.80. Savings of 43%!

I am very satisfied with my trips this week. My Kmart is doubling coupons this week, and I will be blogging about that trip next! I can't wait to show you that trip too!

How did you do this week?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Walgreen's and one side trip..

I had another magnificent trip to Walgreen's this week. There are 3Welch's Jelly (I had $1 off coupons, coffee (0.25 MQ), Kleenex (0.50 MQ off 3), Dr. Pepper (free), and suave (free). And because valentine's candy was on sale 50% off, I got a couple treats for the kids. Except for the Metamucil, all items were either on sale and/or I had a coupon for it. My out of pocket was $11.74 (went on a gift card), and my total for coupons/sale was $22.50! My savings was therefore 66% today!

Another very fine day indeed! I just love to save money!

I did make a side trip to Walmart on Sunday in order to use 2 coupons for free Johnson's buddies soaps that expired that day. As I'm walking down the aisle what do I see? Kraft mac 'n cheese boxes on sale for 50 cents each! Such an awesome price. At my local grocery store, the generic mac 'n cheese is more expensive than that! Plus last Friday when I was at this very Walmart getting a few things they were 79 cents each. Needless to say I bought 10 boxes at the lower price! That should last me quite a few weeks with these kids! Although it's getting to be that I have to make 2 boxes these days to fill them up......

What is your Walgreen's plan? I would buy cereal, but I still have a ton from the last time. Leave me a comment and tell me about your scenario's.

Have a good week. The grocery store sale ad is out tomorrow, wonder what will be on sale next????

Monday, February 16, 2009

Nature walk!

Thought I'd share a picture from last week. The boys and I went on a 'nature walk'. I did not know what they meant by that, but the weather was nice, the sun was out, so I was game!

I now know that it means you pick up every interesting-looking stick, rock, leaf, pine cone and (insert whatever else you see outside here). Apparently we need to keep all this handy to make a 'nature creature' on some future date.

It was a fun way to blow a couple hours on a nice day. Afterwards we went out for (free of course!) ice cream at Culver's to celebrate. I think next time we will bring buckets to hold the loot! At least I convinced them that the loot (crap) stays outside!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Holy coupons! My shopping experience this week.

I did my grocery shopping early this week on Friday. I had a doctor's appointment out of town and the road took me past a couple other stores where I ran in to check the sales. I'm glad I did because I found a couple deals on meat/poultry. What I don't have is a final picture of my purchases. I got home at lunchtime greeted by all three kids and husband (off work for the day) hungry and rummaging through the packages.

I decided since I don't have a picture, I would instead list my purchases and photograph my (very full) freezer and pantry instead to give you an idea of what I've got on hand.

Pick 'n Save: Ground beef 1.99 per lb (I bought 6 lbs to divide up in the freezer), oatmeal bars. Total 14.50. Savings: $0.65.

Piggly Wiggly: Chicken Breasts 0.99 per lb (again, bought 6 lbs), spaghetti noodles, blueberries and Grands Biscuits (0.99 each, got 8 because you can freeze them!), and tuna helper.
Total $22.17. Savings $12.38

Pierce's: 20 Totinos pizza rolls(10/$10), bagels, 2 steamers veggies (0.98), pizza, milk, 3 pizzas (3/$9.99), 4 brownies (2/$4), koolaid, 6 cookie mixes (1.66 ea), 2 frosting (1.50),2 BOGO Pop Secret popcorn, grape tomatoes, 3 mashed potato mixes (0.98), spagehettio's, coffee mate, eggs, bread.
Total $77.37. Savings $62.94!

Once again, I'm over budget but I'll live. We really cleaned up this week. I had coupons for most items I bought, and even the cashier was impressed! My total oop was $114.04, total for coupons and sales was $75.97. That is a savings of 40% for me this week! Wow. I love it! It really impresses upon me how much I have overspent on groceries for years, and makes me sick. But now I am more knowledgeable, and working to get it right.

I am linking to with this, go there and see how lots of other women save on their groceries as well!

Now for the pictures.

Here is my basement freezer. It is pretty well loaded up right now. Lots of steamers bags, bread, pizza rolls, chicken, brats and the like.

I like this upright freezer vs a chest freezer because it is easy to see everything with just one glance! Plus, it holds enough food but doesn't let me get too overloaded! This plus our fridge freezer upstairs has been more than enough for our family of 5. Once the boys are all teenagers, I may feel differently.....

Here is the 'food' side of my hallway pantry. Doesn't it look very neat? I just spent some time the other day expanding up because my stock pile just keeps growing.

One of the major benefits that I have found in using coupons and shopping the sales is that I get so much more than I used to! I never had a back up stash of food.

Imagine the calmness I feel when I run out of peanut butter, and I have 4 more jars in the cupboard! I don't have to run out and get more, overpaying because it isn't on sale. I have so much more peace having this pantry stocked. Plus, I'm spending a lot less on groceries than I used to as well.

This is the 'non-food' side of my hallway pantry/closet. As you can see, I have tons of stuff stockpiled here as well. Kleenex, paper towels, shampoo, toothpaste (? 8 tubes), lotion, dish soap (this doesn't include the 9 packages of dishwasher tabs either, they are in a different place!).

There is also cleaning products, air fresheners, razors, and tons of batteries. The coupons on these items are often plentiful, as well as the sales.

Occasionally I get frustrated that I'm not saving enough on groceries because of the coupon policies of my local stores. But I need to remember, when I get these non-food items free or cheap, it frees up more money to buy the food we need. Savings is savings, so appreciate it wherever it comes!

That is all for today. Sorry it took so long to update the blog. I will be back later in the week to share my weekly Walgreen's trip.

And for those that don't know.....NO COUPON INSERTS THIS WEEK. Bummer.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Walgreen's~ I am lovin' it!

Walgreen's, how I love thee. I feel so giddy when I am there and save a bunch of money. It is so addicting! Definitely a rush. Here's the low down on my weekly trip.

I had coupons for everything I bought, which makes my day. Four Colgate toothpaste for $0.24 each (which I may donate), paper towels for $0.64 each, Dawn dish soap for $0.49 each, plus I stocked up on my batteries. I had a rain check for 3 green re-usable bags that I also picked up. Don't forget the money making Gillette razor!

Coupon savings was $31.05, oop was $24,48 minus $6 RR I received making the final total $18.48. Awesome! The batteries alone were $8, so I certainly got lots 'o stuff!

I usually spend Monday nights (after kiddos in bed) clipping my weekend coupon inserts and planning my Walgreen's trip for the week. That way, as I file coupons, I am reminded about several others that I have as I handle them. I also write a list, noting my final price (so I can tell if everything rang up right) and whether I need to complete more than one transaction. This seems to work well for me.

How was your Walgreen's trip this week? Are you rocking any particular deals? Tell me all about it, maybe I missed something!

Till next time..................

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Grocery shopping for next week!

Hello everyone! I got my shopping done for the week, going to two stores to get it done.First up: Walmart

Sub total here was $61.28, and I had $20.15 in coupons. My total therefore was $41.13. Very good!

My favorite deals were the 8 packets of taco seasoning that were $0.19 each after coupons, 6 Starkist tuna packets that were $0.16 each after coupons. Also in that mix is a free cascade rinse, and betty crocker potato pouches that were $0.43 each after coupons. The rest is all stuff we needed, many of which I had coupons for! All in all, a very successful trip.

Now to Pierce's, where most of my items were generic sale items. Here is that photo:

I just noticed that I was overcharged on the canned veggies that were on sale, so I will be going back to the store! Anyways, I stocked up on sale sugar, tons of cheese and the beer is a treat for hubby on his days off. I spent $47.05 here.

The totals between both places is a little higher than our budgeted $70 for the week. I guess next week I will have to try and come in a little under budget to make up for it. Unless there is a really good sale of course tempting me!

Dave has also decided to try and give up soda, so our Mt Dew purchases should go down every week. I am committed only to 'cut back'. Not ready for those caffeine headaches yet.

Temperatures here are in the high 30's today, which feels like a heat wave. The kids have already been riding their bikes today, and we got our first biking injury of the year too. No broken bones I think, only a bruise.

Have a great week everyone. I am now planning my weekly Walgreen's trip. I am low in my Walgreen's envelope, but I got two rebates back in the mail which has replenished the cash! Happy happy joy joy!

One last note, does anyone actually pay for toothpaste anymore? Don't!! The most you should pay is less than $0.25. Walgreen's is selling Colgate now for 99 cents, and there is a whole bunch of $0.75 or $1 coupons out there. Call me if you need some! Otherwise, I may buy up a bunch to donate to the food pantry!

Check back later this week for more.....

Friday, February 6, 2009

Answering questions and shopping plan.

Ok, first with the questions. Thank you to everyone that has commented on the blog. I love getting the feedback. Jenny asked if I knew where to find hotel coupons. Honestly, I'm not entirely sure. We so rarely go to a hotel. I would start with their website and see if they have a 'specials' tab. But I have also heard that if you call the hotel directly, the price may be even lower.

Another idea is to see if there is an Entertainment Book for your area. It contains lots of coupons for restaurants, hotels, and other attractions. Search their website to see if your area has coupons available.

The next question that I've had is where a new mom can look for a cache of baby coupons. By all means, you need to start by signing up on each companies websites! They will send you samples to try their products and they usually have coupons too. Do this for the diapers, wipes, formula and baby food companies. You can also try calling them to request coupons or samples. When my twins were born, I called all the formula companies to see if they had any multiples specials, and every company sent me some freebies. It doesn't hurt to ask!

Tonight or tomorrow I will be making my weekly run to the grocery store and Walmart. So this afternoon, I clipped and organized my coupons from last weekend. I have already pulled several coupons I know I will be using. I also started my meal plan for the next week so I am sure to have all the ingredients. My hubby is off work at the end of next week, so we may spice up the menu a little!

More tomorrow.....

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Walgreen's deals

I made my weekly trip to Walgreen's today. I was disappointed that a couple of the items on my list were out of stock, so I guess I will make another trip later this week. I would skip it, but I am in need of one of the items.

Zucol is a free after rebate (FAR) item, plus I had a $2 off coupon to make it a moneymaker! I also remembered that I needed valentine's for the kids to use at school, so more went to that as well.

Total: 24.07 after coupons and in store ads. But.... I got $3 register rewards (RR) and a 6.99 rebate coming back to me, making my actual total $14.08. Pretty good considering the 3 12-packs of Mountain Dew~ my addiction that is non-negotiable right now.

How is your Walgreeen's trip going this week? Let me know and leave a comment. If you have any questions, let me know that too!!

Happy Shopping:)

Monday, February 2, 2009

A low key kind of day....

Not too much new today, so I'll tackle coupons again. I told you to clip them all, now you need to organize them! I have a 4 x 6 photo album that is about 20 pages that I currently use. Disclaimer: this isn't going to work for me much longer; it won't stay closed with all the coupons. But it has worked great so far for me.

I separate the coupons in half by food and non-food, then I divided them into categories. Whatever works for you is what you should use. An example of my food categories are cereal, breakfast items, refrigerated bread/rolls, dairy, snack items, desserts, drinks, spices, and so on. Do the same with your non-food items.

I find it helpful to cut out each coupon and handle it several times so it is easier for me to remember what coupons I have. Luckily, this comes easy for me. Many bloggers recommend having a price list so you know what price is a 'deal'. Fortunately my brain has tons of room for this non essential information and I am able to recall it quite easily.

Beyond that, go through sale flyer's and try to match up the sale to the coupons!

Tomorrow is my Walgreen's shopping trip for the week, so check back for updates.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

My weekly grocery trip!

Ok, I've got my shopping done for the week and managed to get a picture of one of my trips. In the effort of full disclosure, I did swipe some money from my 'out to eat' envelope to pay a little of this, but we will just eat frozen pizza this week instead! I got much better bang for my buck doing this.

At Piggly Wiggly (while visiting my sister Saturday) I spent $22.66, and saved $18.64 with coupons and store savings! Almost 50% savings! The deal I loved most was packages of brats which I got for$1.50 each after coupons! I got 6 packages, you can't beat that!

At Pierce's (see picture) my trip total was $45.66, with a savings of $31.10 with coupons and store sales. To sweeten the deal further, several items were "Superbowl specials" including milk! I saved 40% at Pierce's. Many of the pictured items are not a regular part of the items I buy, but I wanted to make a few special superbowl appetizers! So without that, my total would have been much less! Yes, there are 6 boxes of crackers and 3 pizzas in that picture!

I just love to save money! Saving all this grocery money allowed me to pay $200 extra on a bill this month. I'm working towards being debt free, one day at a time!

On an aside, I'd like to toot my own horn a little more. I installed our 'new' dishwasher by myself yesterday while my husband napped! There is a first time for everything. It was intimidating at first, but I took pictures of our old one hooked up and used it as a guide. It was no problem at all!

How did you do shopping this weekend? Leave me a comment, don't be shy and leave your name too! I like the feedback! More later......