Friday, April 16, 2010

How I shop on occasion now

I’ve been wanting to do a post like this for a looooong time. I keep hesitating, and putting it off, because I don’t want to seem like a “copy cat.”
But after my shopping trip yesterday, I can’t keep quiet. I HAVE to share.
I think I’ve been doing it for a LONG time . Probably longer than some of the sites now up on the web. Maybe not, I don't know when they are started, But, I feel like I can share what I know. I know what I'm talking about too. (for the most part)

There are soooo many websites out there already and they show you how to shop with coupons and save money. It’s almost soo many that it’s overwhelming. I look and browse a lot of them. I’m not “obsessed” with it anymore, one, because time is limited for me now, and two and more importantly, we have enough “stock” on hand of most things, to be OK. I do however, still pick up things even though we don’t need them, for free or nearly free, just because you always can find someone who needs them, or donate them to shelters of some sort. And honestly, I like the little “high” you get when I do so well!

If you have NO idea what I am talking about, and are not interested, scroll down and see some cute pictures of my kids. If you are though, please keep reading. Many of my friends and family don’t shop this way. They are amazed how I do it. Want to be better with their money, but don’t take the time to learn, or think they can’t, so I’m posting this for them, so maybe it’s a little easier to “grasp the concept.” It does take a little time to get the concept and know what and how to do things, but for me, it’s about an hours time organizing my trips, if there is more than one, and I think it’s worth the time.

So a little background {if you don’t care, or have the time, scroll down to where I start My trip yesterday.} When we were living down at the beach and my husband was finishing up his undergrad, I had a friend that I “worked” with at church. We started on the topic of shopping and spending money, and onto "deals", and then she told me what she found. Now her husband is a doctor, so money wasn't necessarily an issue for her. She had 3 little kids, {a family of 5} and was just tired of spending SOOO MUCH ($1000-1200 a month} in groceries. She knew it was necessary to feed her family, and it wasn't something she could cut out of her monthly spending, but she wondered if it could be cheaper. One day she was on the internet and googled "cheaper groceries", or "save money on groceries/ food", something like that, and came across; Teri’s list or otherwise known as the grocery game. She started it, fell in LOVE, and then shared it with me. She showed my her pantry, her “stock” and I was totally game and ready to play. This was 2002. I’m thinking, I don’t know if I WAS pregnant with Bubbas but probably must have been. So anyways, I learned it, got my routine down and starting shopping like that, and we even taught a class at church so others could do the same.

In 2004, we left the beach house, a very sad time for us, but Bradley had graduated college and had JUST gotten a job that was much further away. We moved to his parents to save some money, because we knew that we wanted to buy a home soon, and there wasn't really a way we could save in our current situation. While living there at his parents, I continued to shop for his family. At that point, I don’t remember how many kids were still at home, I guess two and their cousin, so 3. Plus us, plus his parents and the other ones that came over to work, (family business) so there where at least 10 people through the week eating there. It was pertinent that I continued to shop like that. My IL’s paid for the food, I just clipped the coupons and went to the store and that was my “contribution” let’s say, that we agreed on. It was a great agreement, in my opinion. I LOVED to shop AND save money. I got to do both, without spending my own money. And they got a fridge and pantry stocked with stuff!

So a year later, we moved out, bought our home, and I continued to shop this way for about another year until 2006, religiously, then we had sooo much and I was wanting more healthier foods and so I only did it every now and then. Kind of took a break for 2 years. The newness wore off, and we were OK to buy what we needed.
When Boo Boo was coming, I started up again in 2008, because I knew how hard is would be to get to the store for this or that, and with a baby, diapers and wipes were necessary so I wanted to stock up when I could for the “rainy days.”
Things had changed in these few years. More people were shopping this way. More stores, were on the bandwagon, and more specials and deals were out there to be had.
And that is just what I did. So here we are today. I watch the specials, get the newspaper for the coupons, or actually I get the coupons from grandma’s paper, (we would never read the paper so why get it when she does?? LOL) and I still shop occasionally for the "deals".
SOOOO now onto the post.

Shopping trip Yesterday

I went to CVS and this is what I bought. Gosh can I even say that??? hehe keep reading, and you'll know why.

My total at first was 29 and some change, I don't even remember.

Then, I used these coupons from links:
$1.00off CVS paper product (prints at machine with rewards card)
$1.00 Dial soap coupon
$1.50 Jergens
2 $2.50 John freida hair products
$4 off 20 beauty purchase

Paid with These extra care bucks (ecb’s):
4.50 in ecb from my winter spending
3.99 ecb's colgate deal {still going on}
5.00 ecb from huggies deal a couple weeks ago

and it took my total to............

which means I paid "Out of pocket" (OOP) :
Ready??? Wait for it,,,,,,,,,

Wait for it……………… (Here's my receipt so you know I don't fib)
.99 + (tax) 1.53= 2.52

That's not ALL!!!!

I got back :
5 ecb for the Jergens/John Freida purchases
4.49 for the Dove shampoo
4.50 for the Dial soap
And .25 cents for my “green bag tag”. {It’s a dollar after 4 visits, so .25 each visit.}

So I spent 2.52 and got back 14.24 for my future spending.

Essentially, they paid me = 11.72 to come and take buy things from their store. They got $7.50 in coupons that they send to the manufactures and get $$$ for. I see this as a win /win situation if you ask me.
Go out and try it if you don't.
If you have any questions, let me know. {this post was already wayyy long and so I didn't go into ever. single. detail. )
I am MORE than happy to help people’s money go further and help you stock your house for the “rainy days”.
Because as we know, like what’s happening today out there in the economy, you never know when you are going to need your stockpile. I’m glad that we have it on hand, in case we REALLY need it. Meaning, unemployment, illness, that sort of thing. We USE it, or share it and give to others, but if we couldn’t go out and buy these things for some reason, we’d be OK with a lot of things on hand. With the money I saved, when I first started out, THIS is how I got my hair done, pedicaures, ate out for dinner, and did fun things with my family.

So how many people shop like this?? Is this a totally "new" concept for you, or is this "your" way as well. Just curious to see. Leave me a comment if you went through some or ALL of this, {I'm sorry, it was REALLY LONG,} and let me know how YOU shop.

Here are a few sites I've used or currently use to check things out. {database to search for when coupons came out)


Carrie said...

Stopping by a little tardy from the party!

Yes! I shop like this! I got started on the grocery game a little over a year ago! I {heart} CVS and ECBs!!!!!!!

Ailene Bastille said...

I like to add It is also a great similar site for finding coupons to save money.

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Trying to savor the little moments in our lives that make the memories.