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Jumping Into The World of Couponing

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Let’s be honest for a moment, the cost of food and household necessities are overpriced and most families can’t afford to buy what they need without setting an extreme budget and using different ways to save. For over 18 years, I have tried to get myself into couponing but it never stuck. Time and time again, I would get myself all psyched up to get into the world of couponing. I wanted to become like all the amazing stories I would read about or hear about on tv. Even before the Extreme Couponing tv shows, I wanted to find ways to use these coupons to save my family and I as much money as I could so we can use that extra money to enjoy the fun things in life.

I am not going to lie, the thought of jumping into this couponing world does overwhelm me. I joined a local couponing group to get the heads up on deals in the area. I watch these women purchase $100s of dollars worth of products for just a few dollars. I am in complete awe when they display the pictures of all the products they just brought home and the receipt of how much they paid and saved. Now to get to be like those women and save, save, save!

When I began couponing, the only coupons I knew about were the ones in the Sunday papers but now you can print them off at home as well. One thing I do need to be vigilant about is purchasing the weekly papers for the coupons. In my area, one paper comes out on Saturday and one on Sunday that covers the best coupon inserts. There has been multiple times, I completely forgot what day it was and never purchased my papers only to watch these other women show the great sales they just got from the coupons I missed out on. Now, I set an alert on my phone to remind myself to buy my weekly papers.

In addition to the weekend paper coupons, you can print coupons from various websites including the manufacturer sites which just amazes me because in less than 20 years things have changed so much in the couponing world. Anyway I can get a coupon to save money, I will use those ways and my ink/paper to spend less money at the grocery store.

With a new baby in the house, we will be needing to purchase diapers and other baby items so finding those coupons are going to be a must. Plus, the little shopping trips to Walmart or my grocery store for those items we run out of faster like milk, bread and fresh produce the coupons can come in handy. I love when I find coupons for the halo oranges because Danyella could eat a bag all by herself!

The world of couponing, not even extreme couponing, can be intense and overwhelming to start which is why I am going to do a couple of in-depth posts about couponing to fit around your schedule and some key tips on how to save the most money on those products you need to buy over and over again. Stayed tuned to next week’s post about what essential things you need to get started with couponing.

 

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Do Coupons Really Matter?

Is Couponing Worth It_

For more years than I want to admit, I have been couponing on and off…. though more off then on because I would either forget it was Sunday to buy the papers, I was too lazy to cut the coupons before I went shopping or I would just forget the coupons at home when I was already in the grocery store. Also, I was doubtful that I was really saving any money because I would have to purchase 2 or 3 of a product just to get the $1 off. Well this past week taught me the lesson that I need to learn to be frugal and that there are good coupons and deals if I just pay attention!

 

So we all know of the extreme couponers that have a format to how they coupon and purchase like $200 worth of groceries for $20 (maybe a little extreme but not really if you watch the shows and documentaries). In my mind, those extreme couponers were a little crazy and had too much time on their hands which I didn’t have. Now, I do have the time on my hands and the financial need to cut down on our spending costs so I better start paying attention to what they are doing and copying their money-saving ways.

My lesson from last week is this…. Shoprite (our local go to grocery store for good deals) had Arm & Hammer laundry detergent on sale for $1.99 plus there was a coupon out in the world for a $1 off the detergent which means you can buy the detergent for just $.99! Well that $1 savings could go towards the fresh fruit and veggies that my family devours in a day or less.

Lately, at my go to couponing place, I could have easily purchased 10 bottles for $1 each BUT I only had 1 coupon for regular detergent and 1 coupon for the sensitive skin (Danyella and the new baby). So I ordered (yes I order my groceries which will be a future post) 1 bottle of regular scented detergent and 1 bottle of the sensitive skin detergent and used my coupons. After putting the groceries away, I was kicking myself in the ass about the detergent situation so I waddled my ass around Shoprite to get more of the detergent without the coupons. (insert crying face emoji here haha) I mean with how much our dog sheds, I needed as much detergent as I could get at that price!

 

Lesson learned because we go through detergent so often with a furry puppy. The next place I  have been looking for coupons has been coupons.com because I can easily print of the coupons and why would I need to go over their limit of only printing the coupon 1 time when I don’t usually stock up on things. (BIG MISTAKE AND LESSON LEARNED FOR A FUTURE POST COMING SOON!)

 

Photo Aug 13, 12 15 01 PM

Next lesson on coupons I learned…. I may never become one of those extreme couponers but this morning I got out of bed early (a rarity just ask my boyfriend husband) and went to Wawa to purchase 2 Sunday papers to get those coupons. (“Christina” has found us a hook up to get a set of 10 papers to split and save us the trip and money!)

As I am cutting the coupons from 2 different papers (don’t know why I decided to try 2 different papers but something told me to do it), I find out that not all papers have the same damn coupons! The one paper had more coupons than the other but the other paper had a rebate coupon that doesn’t expire until March of next year. Shit now do I buy 2 of each of those papers? Yes, I do buy the one paper for “Christina” and I and she gets us the hook up for the other paper so we can use all the savings we can get!

This is a bit overwhelming and a little exciting at the same time. I am trying to find other ways to save money before this baby gets here and we have to add baby stuff to the grocery list. Since this is going to be an ongoing challenge for me, I am starting a series on couponing and saving on Sundays. If you have any tips or stories of your own please feel free to comment below.

*Check out how to make your own coupon binder: Create your own Coupon Binder

* Need help learning couponing terms: Couponing Terms with Printable List

**Since, writing this post last year, I have been finding better ways to save with coupons and I can’t wait to share my post this weekend on using these coupons to stockpile so be on the look out!