Shopping, Anyone?

29 May

I cannot believe that June is just around the corner… we are almost halfway through 2012.  All this realizing made me check back to the resolutions I made for 2012 – remember back when I promised to (try) sticking with our budget?  We’ve done okay – not great, but not terrible either.  There is definitely room for improvement for the next half of 2012.  Which brings me to saving while shopping.

This isn’t a post about anything fun, but just wanted to share that if you’re committed and plan ahead, you can save a great deal on stuff.  That said, we naturally stock on bulk items like eggs, shampoo/conditioner, toilet paper, and paper towels from Costco (along with other items).  Groceries and other everyday items, including my make-up, we are able to save about 20-30% on most grocery trips (every now and then, you just need something for dinner that isn’t on that list), but it requires me to flip through the Sunday ads and make a list of what I need to buy from Kroger, Publix, CVS, and Target.  Don’t get me wrong, I flip through many more ads than that, but those are 4 I usually end up making a list from for ease.  Most weeks, Chris and I will go to Kroger and Publix on Sunday and I’ll sneak to CVS and Target sometime during the week.  I can’t seem to save more than 45% on a “regular” grocery trip, but I do score some great deals every now and then elsewhere!  If you’re reallllly careful and keep your eyes open, you can also save on other things.  For example, Publix ran a deal about 2 months ago where if you spent at least $25 in groceries, you could buy a $50 gas card (I got mine for QT) for $40.  Which give me an automatic $10 in savings since $25 is easy to spend for a 4-person family like ours.

CVS has a great rewards program… I once was able to knock off $8 in cash just from built-up rewards cash.  On one of my most recent trips, I bought snacks, some Icy Hot for Chris, Febreeze Sit and Refresh for the boy’s/guest bathroom, travel-sized shaving cream for a work-related trip for Chris, and Olay’s Cleanser.  The cleanser alone rings up $20 regular price, but with manufacturing coupons and CVS coupons, I paid $20.68.  Total.  For all that stuff.  Boo-yeah!  That’s enough to make me do a little dance in my head, which suffices until I get in my car and do a real dance.

Aside from grocery stuff, I try to save a decent amount on clothes as well — that, and I get incredibly lucky.  For example, with Clearance + Banana’s Reward Cash + Memorial Day coupons + Human Error = Cheap Pants!

I was able to purchase these Banana Republic pants (valued at $89.50) for $7.55.

And the final toot-my-horn moment from this past week (no, this kind of stuff does not happen regularly at all) occurred at Target.  I love Target… it’s like a safe haven for me.  Nothing bad can happen to me there.  Except spending too much money, I guess.  Anyhow, NinaR and I went kayaking this past weekend, which meant that we both needed some soft-sided coolers.  I found a great one (by Igloo) that I knew Chris would love… but the last one on the shelf had no price tag.

Here’s a story of when being nice pays off.  I couldn’t find another one like the one above, but I grabbed it anyhow in hopes that the employees would have a way to look it up.  Just in case, I grabbed another one that would have been an okay alternative.  Since the nice check-out lady and I spent about 5 minutes looking everywhere for their alternative item number (still not sure what this is exactly), she rang it up as the same price as my alternative one.  However, she also adjusted the price to make it $15 instead.  I may or may not have said “I love you” while looking her dead in the eye.  Finally, because my previous purchase had gotten me a $10 Target gift card (like I said, I stock up and buy things by planning ahead to get the most bang for my buck), I used that to give me a grand total of $6.20.  The website states that the bag is on sale for $29something.  You can bet my brain had mini-seizures from all the in-my-head dancing I did!

It’s sad how excited I get about this kind of stuff, but it makes me feel so much better about spending!  Chris gets pretty excited for me too, which makes it that much more fun.  With my upcoming graduation, there is hope for me finding a job this year and not having to worry so much… but no worries, I won’t be giving up my couponing habits!  They will remain crucial during grad-school-debt-repayment-planning.  I just hope to be able to breathe a little easier.

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2 Responses to “Shopping, Anyone?”

  1. AlexOnActing May 30, 2012 at 4:37 pm #

    Deals are the best! Good job.

  2. Barbara Putnam May 30, 2012 at 7:14 pm #

    i love couponing and feel like it should be an olympic sport, however, with that being said, i wouldn’t even make podium. i wouldn’t mind a raise. or another job altogether. 😉 good job on the pants (super cute! btw) and of course the STEAL from target. xo

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