Couponing- June 21

Here is my first week’s venture into couponing.

I am starting with about $700 a month spent on groceries for a family of six.  I am almost horrified to admit that.  But, here goes.

To help me not be so overwhelmed, I am choosing to shop at one or two grocery stores a week- primarily BiLo, Food Lion, and Harris Teeter- and Target and CVS.

I am using Southern Savers for my information.  Jenny at Southern Savers gives daily coupon offers to print, lists each stores ads each week, and matches available coupons with the grocery ads for you.  The website concentrates mainly on Southern locations from what I understand.  The Grocery Game is a similar site that is available anywhere, but you do have to pay a monthly fee for that service.

I decided that for this to work for me, I needed to have a set schedule of when I did everything.  So:
Monday– Check and print online coupons.  Organize coupons in folders.  Print out a Target and CVS shopping list.
Wednesday– Print out grocery store list(s) for the store(s) I have chosen to shop in.
Friday– Clip coupons and match with store lists.
Saturday– Shop at grocery store(s).

I will shop at Target and CVS based on available time during the week because I think I can manage those with kids in tow.

The lady that gave the workshop said she usually spent 2-3 hours a week on all this now that she’s been doing it for a while.  Starting, I plan that I will spend more than that.

I started looking around Saturday night and spent about 2 hours then getting started.  I then spent about 5 hours on and off on Sunday before I headed to the grocery store Sunday afternoon.  During that time, I read some getting started articles from Southern Savers; I found and labeled the coupon inserts from the last few papers; I printed some online coupons referenced by Southern Savers; I made a shopping list for BiLo and I matched my coupons to the list.

My retail cost at BiLo was $177.  I paid $105.  I thought that was wonderful for my first time.  As I continue I expect to spend less and less.  I would like to get out total bills- including the grocery store, Target, and drugstore down to $100 a week.  That would make our grocery/health and beauty $400 for the month.

I hope to post regularly on my savings.

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