Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Steal of a Deal

I've been couponing for about 16 months now. I dabbled in the art of couponing our last few months in New Orleans and when we moved to Huntsville, I really picked it up. When we moved to Huntsville, we hadn't worked in approximately six weeks and money was tight, so I didn't really have a choice as to whether to save money. While we both have good jobs in Huntsville, I continue to coupon because I enjoy it and if I didn't, I'm afraid Dave Ramsey would yell at me and tell me that this is one more way that I can help us get out of debt. When I tallied our receipts from last year, I saved $4000 last year in coupons, so I would say it's worth it for the Wilkerson household. 

I'm not extreme like those on the TLC show Extreme Couponing, but I do have a stockpile of goods but it consists of our hallway closet. And if you were to see me out shopping, I may or may not have my couponing notebook with me and if you were to look in my cart you would worry about our diet because none of the ingredients usually go together. The point of couponing is to buy items at the lowest price and buy enough of it to last until the next time it goes on sale (between 6 weeks and 2 months).

I usually shop on Fridays. I don't work on Fridays and the crowds are significantly less with everyone at work. However, in the summer, the crowds are a bit bigger and my summer schedule does not always allow me to do such on any given Friday. Tomorrow, we're headed to Atlanta, so I went shopping the middle of a summer thunderstorm. Needless to say, I was drenched several times, but I saved lots of money and that makes everything worth it. 

I went to Publix and here's what I got:
I spent $6.80 and saved $16.36 or 71%.

Remember, I said you buy things at their lowest price and buy enough to last until the next time it goes on sale. Hershey's syrup goes on sale a little less often than other goods, so I bought four bottles just in case. Here's the breakdown:
  • 4 Hershey's Chocolate Syrup, BOGO for $1.10 each and then had $1/2 manufacturer's coupon = $2.40 for 4
  • 3 Chex Mix, BOGO for $1.30 each and had $0.50 manufacturer's coupon that doubled to $1 = $0.30 per bag, $0.90 for all 3 bags
  • Eckrich Sausage for jambalaya (after all, we did live in New Orleans for many years), on sale for $2, had $0.55 manufacturer's coupon = $1.45
  • Colgate toothbrush, on sale for $4/2 (not a great price, but it was time for new toothbrushes in the Wilkerson household - no we don't share, I already had another one in the stockpile) with a $0.40 manufacturer's coupon that doubled to $0.80 = $1.20
$5.92 + $0.88 tax = $6.80 TOTAL

I went to SuperTarget and used a lot of Target coupons printed from their website. Here's what I got:

I spent $8.77 and saved $25.85 or 75%.

Here's the breakdown:
  • Sugar (not on sale but we needed it, we live in the South and sweet tea is a requirement) $3.09
  • Up & Up Face Wash $2.10 - $0.75 Target coupon = $1.35
  • Up and Up Nail Polish Remover $0.97 - $0.50 Target coupon = $0.47
  • Pillows (standard, no frills) $2.50 - $2 Target coupons = $0.50, bought 2, $1.00
  • Up and Up Liners $0.87 - $0.75 Target coupon = $0.12
  • Benadryl Itch Sticks $2.29 - $2 manufacturer's coupon = $0.29, bought 2, $0.58
  • Sharpie markers, 2 pack for $1 - $1 Target coupon = FREE, used 4 coupons, 8 total markers for FREE
  • Papermate pens 10 pack for $1.02 - $1 Target coupon = $0.02, used 4 coupons, $0.08 for 40 pens
  • Aussie hairspray $4.54 - $1 off 2 Target coupon - $3 manufacturer's coupon = $0.54 for 2 bottles
$7.60 + $1.17 tax = $8.77

Each time I go shopping, my goal is to save 70% so I met my goal on both accounts. I used to clip coupons with my Papa when I was much younger. I think he wanted me to practice my scissor skills, but it also is a chore doing all that the end it's definitely worth it and he would be so proud of my efforts!

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