Alright world, I have a confession - I started couponing and I LOVE IT!!
Our good friend Dr. M (aka Auntie Colleen), she gave us the basics on how to coupon over dinner one night. The next morning we went to Sheetz and bought two Sunday newspapers - I have been hooked ever since. I don't aspire to be a crazy couponer like the ones on TV, but I have already saved a lot of money AND have been able to stock up on baby and cleaning supplies.
Each time I coupon, I'm gradually saving more and more on our total bill. I still go shopping weekly for the things I need and I try not to deviate from what I would normally purchase. On our first haul, we saved 25%. On our second, 30%. Today at CVS, I saved 50%. We use a combination of the Sunday newspaper, subscribing to our favorite brands' mailing lists, paying attention to the store's promotions, and adding digital coupons to our Kroger card/printing CVS and Target coupons. I spend maybe 90 minutes a week looking through, clipping, and clicking and I save at least $50 a week. I know I'll only get better with experience and this will help me "contribute to our income" when I stay home with Joanna!
One of the highlights of couponing has been our ability to give to others. After the horrible flooding in Binghampton, NY, we were able to donate supplies thanks to coupons. Instead of giving $20, we were able to give them $65 worth of cleaning supplies.
Hauls this week:
CVS for groceries and deal hunting
Retail Cost: $96.43
Total Paid out of Pocket: $48.11
Savings: $48.32 (Manufacturer coupons, CVS coupons, and CVS bucks)
Percent Savings: 50%
Target for weekly grocery shopping (not all items had coupons)
Retail Cost: $97.65
Total Paid out of Pocket: $67.62
Savings: $30.03 (Manufacturer coupons)
Percent Savings: 31%
Kohls for clothes (suit pants, 3 suit shirts, bath robe for hospital, bolero for dress)
Retail Cost: $298.12
Total Paid out of Pocket: $128.54
Savings: $169.58 (in-store deals and a 30% coupon found on my phone while Jonathan was trying on clothes)
Percent Savings: 57%
Babys R Us for baby items (baby gate, baby monitor, and pump)
Retail Cost: $473.77
Total Paid out of Pocket: $333.04 (we had a $20 gift card, so we actually paid $313.04)
Savings: $140.73 (using a mailer with coupons and timing it with in-store sales)
Percent Savings: 32%