Saving With Couponing

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Over the past few years, I've blogged sporadically about couponing. My couponing journey has been pretty long and bumpy.

Several years ago I heard a speaker at the homeschool convention speak about couponing, and I blindly jumped on the coupon bandwagon. Her talk had been brief and didn't contain many specifics. So my attempt was pretty much over before it began.

Two years ago, I was able to hear Jenny Martin, the host for Southern Savers couponing/store sales blog at another homeschool convention. She was much more specific and gave some very detailed instructions on how to begin.

I came home very motivated and have since come a long way in couponing. But I always seem to flounder after some good attempts at savings.

Right now I'm reviewing a great book about couponing- Christi the Coupon Coach. I don't want to give away all the secrets in the book, but I will say that I am refreshed and renewed in my couponing adventure. When I share the review, I'll let you know some more specific things I've done and some of the ways I've saved.

While you're waiting for the review, here are some general tips I've picked up and some realizations that I've come to.

1. Because we eat less processed food and now are eating gluten free (at least some of us), I'm not going to see the extremely low grocery bills that some couponers have. I need to stop comparing my savings with everyone else. If I can cut costs on our health and beauty, cleaning supplies, and convenience foods, I'll be doing good. Then I can buy the natural/organic/gluten free foods I need.

2. Organization is a key point when trying to save money by couponing. Christi the Coupon Coach gives some great ideas about that organization process and because of that, I changed my method of organizing coupons.

3. Effective couponing involves changing the way you think about shopping for groceries. Instead of making a list of what you need and going to the store to buy it, you buy when you can match sales to coupons for the best price, and then you "shop" out of your pantry.

4. Matching store sales to coupons and "stacking" coupons when possible is where the real savings come in. I use Southern Savers as a local site to match sales and coupons. You can do the work yourself, but there are many of these sites that do it for you. If you want to pay a subscription fee, you can join The Grocery Game, a site that focuses on most of the national chains and finds sale/coupon match ups. I joined for a while but honestly thought Southern Savers was better- and free!

I'll be sharing about my couponing savings every so often, and stay tuned for the review of Christi the Coupon Coach.


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