Friday, February 12, 2010

Where do I get coupons?

Can you say THRILLED?  That is what I am right now.  Never did I think that anyone but my family and a few good friends (because they love me) would even read this thing.  So, to have questions come from folks I haven't seen in a while or heard from is just...well, exciting!

I've mentioned this in a past post and will mention it over and over and over again because it is that important.  If you do not know how much you are spending on groceries each month then you need to save your receipts for ONE month and add it up.  To me groceries include that daily stop at the QuickMart for a coke or the Sonic for a Diet Coke.  It includes cleaning supplies and basic toiletries (shampoo, conditioner, lotion).  It also includes diapers, baby food, and wipes.  Now, for you it might include pet food but for us, we have a separate budget item for pet supplies and vet visits so I do not include kitty litter or dog food in our grocery budget.  So, the first order of business is to calculate how much you are spending on groceries every month.  How can you see your progress if you have no idea where you are right now?!?

Once you know where you are with your grocery budget the next thing you need to consider is where can I pick up coupons?  From all the blogs that I have read they all say pretty much the same thing:  get a Sunday subscription to the largest newspaper you can get your hands on!  For us here in Middle GA that would be the Macon Telegraph.  I wish with all my heart that it was the Atlanta Journal and Constitution (AJC) but it is not.  So, here is what I did:  I got a 1 year, Sunday only subscription to the Macon Telegraph.  I purchased a one year subscription to All You magazine (every issue is filled with coupons).  Each Sunday after church, if there are coupon inserts in the Telegraph I head over and pick up between 2 to 4 Houston Home Journals (HHJ).  Why?  The HHJ sometimes carries the same inserts that were in the Telegraph.  I always pick up one, check and see if there are any inserts and then determine how many to purchase after that.  This past Sunday I bought 4 because I wanted several of the P&G insert.  So, here is what I am paying each week for my newspapers:  $1 for the Telegraph and $.50 each for the HHJ.  I spend between $2-3 each Sunday and am saving around $100 a week between sales and coupons.  Now, is anyone's investments giving them that kind of return these days?!?

The second place you pick up coupons is in the stores themselves.  Publix has that thing that spins right at the front door.  Have you looked closely at that lately?  Sometimes there are coupon books on it!  Now, as you get into it remember that there are other people in this world besides you so DO NOT grab ALL of them!  Since it is just Bubba and I, I usually take 2-4 depending on the type of coupons that are in it.  Obviously if it is all baby coupons, I don't even take one but I call my coupon buddy and let her know it's there.  If it is all vitamins I will leave it because we aren't into that at this stage in our lives.  I believe you get the picture.  If you mosey up and down the aisles you will see little red or black boxes that have blinking lights on them.  These are called "blinkies" and they "spit out" coupons for a particular product.  Once again, be mindful of how many you take.  The rule of thumb is take 4.  Now, if it is a great coupon for baby food and you have 2 little munchkins eating baby food at home then please take a few more because I won't be taking any.  I will be taking a few more than 4 if I see a blinkie for Smart Balance butter or cooking oil because I can't have too much in my home.  I love to cook and bake and need both.

Have you found a great place to pick up coupons?  I would love to hear from you.  Is there a deal that you found and would like to share with everyone else?  Email it to me and I will post it OR leave a comment here for all to see.  :-)  It is my desire that this blog become a community of like minded savers who help each other out.

Mrs. Bubba

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