Sunday, January 31, 2010

Does anyone know what day it is?

IT'S SUNDAY and it's coupon day!! Buy your newspapers and start clipping out those coupons!

There will be 2 inserts in the paper. Smartsource and Redplum.If you want to see what coupons are in the paper before buying you can check them out here and here. (coupons may vary by area)

Don't forget to get the ads out of the paper, as well. Make a list of items, for each store, that you think you may want to buy. You may find that another store has the same item, but for a cheaper price.

A lot of times the stores coincide their sales w/that weeks coupons, so be sure to match up the coupons. Check here to see if there any internet printable coupons that you might be able to use this week.

Got your lists, so go shopping! I advise to not shop on Sunday morning, you'll be hit with a mad rush of couponers wanting to get the deals immediately. This will be you in a few months, but not now ;).

Comment what deals you see ... I'd love to read them!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Buy a lot!

Did you see the ad for City Market? Probably not, but I did and I will be buying $10 worth of 73% (lean) hamburger meat. Why? Because it is only 99cents a lb! This is not my favorite percentage of Hamburger meat, but this will tide us over while I wait until 90% goes on sale again. And, whatever is leftover, I can mix w/the 90% and make some great meatloaf out of it!

What I'm getting at is when you see something on sale, that you know you use, stock up on it. Meat especially. Don't buy just 1 pack, get 4 or 5 or more of them. This is a big cost up-front, but in the long run, you will notice a savings.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Sign up and get a coupon neighbor...

my tip for today ;) ...

When you sign up at you can go here to request a coupon neighbor. This neighbor will answer your questions and send you a FREE envelope of coupons to get you started. If you make a wishlist (coupons you would like to have), the neighbor will try and get you some of what you need.

Come on. Don't be shy. Get in there and post :)


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Kerri's Kouponing 101

My friend, Marti, had great idea. She wants me to post a tip a day about how I save money by using coupons. Problem is, it's not that easy. I can, however, tell you my story, give a few starting tips and send you on your way to learn more.

Here's some background:
3 years ago, my friend Laura, kept telling me what great deals she was getting by using coupons. Much like I do to you all on Facebook. I just envied her and went on my way, not clipping coupons, not stockpiling, not getting those Sunday papers ... I mean, who has time for that? I was working full-time, had 3 kids, a husband, cats, laundry, dishes, supper ... ... I didn't have time to cut and file coupons.

It took Laura just about a year to finally get me into using the coupons. She was a great mentor and for her, I am thankful!

She got me hooked on my first 'coupon' board. I read and read and read some more. I asked question after question. I was up way past my bedtime, it was the only peaceful time I had. When it finally clicked, I was saving money. I was finally ahead on shampoo and body wash and paper towels. I finally realized what Laura was doing. SHE WAS SAVING MONEY AND LOTS OF IT!

As I'm sitting here, 2 years later, typing this, I'm looking back at how many boo boo's and blubbers I had when I first started. I was most definitely saving money, but I had those mistakes that would now make me cringe, maybe even cry. I'm not going to lie, using coupons isn't something that's fast, it does take time. But, the time is worth it.

Time for some tips now, eh? I'll start with baby steps, then you can grow on your own.

~Start with getting 2 Sunday newspapers every week. Clip the coupons for the items that you use. As time goes on, you'll 'learn' to use other brands and therefore will have more coupons. You may even find yourself buying Crest mouthwash, even though you don't use it, but it was only 25cents! (Helpful hint: put the like pages of coupons together, clip them both at the same time)

~Use small envelopes and label them and file the coupons accordingly:
Shaving Needs

~If you don't already have them, get saving cards for ALL of the grocery stores and drug stores around you. (Walgreens, Rite Aid, Walmart & Target do NOT have cards) Be prepared to shop at more than one store. I don't care if you don't like the color of Food Lion's floor, you WILL shop there if you can get toothpaste for free, right?

~Read the ads to every single store in your area. I'm sure you know what you 'normally' pay for lunch meat? Dog food? Here's the thing. You see 'it' on sale and it is $3 less, but wait, you have a coupon for $3 off, that is a savings of $6! Not only do you have 1 coupon, but because Kerri said to buy 2 papers, you have 2 of those coupons. You have now saved $12. You didn't just buy 2 of those items, you also bought time between buying that item again. And so begins the 'stockpiling'. If you were to buy 5 papers, you will have gotten 5 of those items, saved $30 (between sale price and coupon), and bought more time between purchasing that item again. Go ahead and figure in the cost of the newspapers, you still saved at least $20!

The paragraph above is very important. It is telling you in a nutshell how you end up saving money. You buy 2 or 3 or 4 of that item that is on sale with a coupon. At first, it will seem like you are spending a lot of money out of pocket, but after about 3 to 4 months, you will notice that you are buying less in one shopping trip because you bought certain items 2 weeks prior. You WILL start to realize that a particular item only goes on sale at a certain time of year, like ketchup (Memorial Day & Labor Day), and you will stock up then to have it on hand until the next sale. You'll realize that boneless chicken breast goes on sale every 4 weeks, so you'll stock up 4 weeks worth until the next sale.

~If you can't get away to shop by yourself, take your kids with you!! They will learn from a young age that momma won't buy that without a coupon! Seriously, they do learn from this and they can be helpful. They have tearpads (coupons located on a cardboard display case in the middle or end of the aisles) and blinkies (machines that have a blinking light and hang on the shelves by the products it is offering coupons for) and kids go NUTS finding and gathering the coupons.

~Sign up for a 'coupon/savings' board and ask questions, we LOVE questions! We love sharing our successes, the deals we find, the hell (or joy) of finding them. I'm not going to lie, I'm on my 3rd board. I have no doubt in my mind that this is my final stop. I will be there until they take me away and place me in a CA (coupons anonymous)home. These women/men are the most outstanding, reliable, understandable, most helpful, couponers, that I know! (My friend, Laura & my mom included!). I can't say enough about the women/men that are there. We are constantly seeking deals, posting about them, deciphering them, talking about them all the while we are still learning more. So, without further adieu, we are at: ... ... When you get there, introduce yourself and don't be shy!

2 years into this adventure:
~I am spending only $300 a month in groceries on a family of 5. I'm trying hard to get that even less, but compared to the $600 I WAS spending, I'm happy.

~I have a basket full of free band-aids, a bathroom cupboard full of FREE deodorant, a shelf full of dishwasher detergent that I spent no more that $1.50 on each, and a laundry room with at least 10 ALL detergents that I got for 50cents each.

~I've conquered 3 cities with using coupons. Chambersburg (PA), Hagerstown (MD) (since that is where I worked), and now where I live in Colorado. My toughest stores yet are here in Colorado.

~I have started a 'gift' closet. What is this? I've been buying toys that have gone on clearance to use as birthday gifts (my kids or others) and/or Christmas gifts. This is easy to do for younger kids, it's Jake's age that is hard to buy cheaply for!

~I spend a ton of time on the computer, searching and reading deals ... I've found a hobby of sorts and I enjoy it thoroughly.

~I still have a lot to learn.

I think I've rattled enough for tonight, but I do have one more thing that I want you to keep in mind. Coupons are LEGAL, you will not go to jail for saving money!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Why did we move here...

I'm still trying to figure out the reason.
~Is it so I could be a stay-at-home-mom? If so, that isn't going so well, I think I'm going a bit insane, no wait, I KNOW I'm going insane.

~To get a dog? Yeah, right, we moved to Colorado to get a dog because there are no dogs in PA.

~To be with Frank? This would be my first answer, but then I wonder what the reason was for him to be promoted and transferred.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Have you gone yet?

to the most glorious couponing/deal website yet? Well, hurry up and get your butt there...I know you want to save money this year :)

Our Coupon Home

Monday, January 4, 2010

During diet I need to work on...

~Drink MORE water!
~Smaller portion sizes!
~Vigorous (LOL) activity for at least 20 minutes a day!
~Smoke less!

Day 1 --- I'm at it again ...

weight loss. Just like everyone else, right? LOL I did so well last year for the 4 weeks (or was it 6 weeks?) that I was on the diet that I could kick myself for falling off the wagon! Here is my day today:
2 pieces wheat toast w/very little butter
10 pots of black coffee (4 cups really...needed 10 pots though!)
1 Glass Water
Wii Fit - 20 mins

Mid Morning:
1 clementine

Subway 6inch on wheat - Ham w/tons of veggies, vinegar only
unsweet tea

Ana and I walked to lunch

Mid-afternoon snack:
7 nacho chips w/picco de gallo

After typing this out, I noticed I need to work on my water intact even if it is just unsweet tea.

Cooking chicken stir-fry w/veggies and rice.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

We made it...

through Christmas w/out to many emotions ...

What saved me from a break down was my brother-in-law and sister-in-law inviting us up to Denver for Christmas dinner! I did, however, have a little breakdown on the drive there ... you see, I was supposed to be going to my parents house.

We had fun ... even had a lot of snow there.

The kids made out w/their gifts, like the spoiled kids they are. My parents did well w/sending gifts, for me too. My favorite, like any other year, is stocking gifts, which my mom sent to me in a purse. I had everything I needed (except for my mom/dad/sister) on Christmas.

2010? But I forgot some blogging ...

like Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day!

Let's start with Thanksgiving ... We had a pretty quiet day. First one in the 16 years that Frank and I have been together. It was just us. I cooked an awesome meal (if I do say so myself) ...

After lunch we lazed around all day. This holiday wasn't to bad to get through w/out the family, although I'd rather of been with them.

I was thankful that my parents were in Florida w/my sister and my in-laws had a lot of their kids/kids-in-laws there with them.