In that effort, Erin has become the Queen of Coupon Shopping. Funny, that. She used to make fun of people for couponing.
Now she's embraced it. Even took a class on couponing in Raleigh. If you live in the Raleigh, NC area, she raved about Faye Prosser of Smart Spending Resources.
Successful couponing is all about organization. She bought a nifty binder at Staples (with a coupon, of course), and got the tabs and baseball card holders from Smart Spending Resources.
The baseball card holder pages hold the coupons. She bought some extras at Amazon.com to complete her setup.
She budgets $250 per month for food. She's been averaging about $600 worth of food for about $210, well within her budget.
Her coupon sources include the Sunday newspaper, store-specific ads, as well as coupons from Web sites she's joined. She prints out a set at home, and gets Daryl to print out a set on his Mac (it uses a separate IP address). She gets a third set printed at work.
Here's a list of the sites she gets coupons from:
https://www.pgeverydaysolutions.com/pgeds/register-brandsampler.jsp (sign up for the Proctor & Gamble sampler booklet)
http://www.pgeverydaysolutions.com/pgeds/pgeverydaysavings/rebate-eds-or-general.jsp (she qualified for a P&G rebate and got the free pink breast cancer baking set)
http://www.target.com (Erin also has a Target VISA, so she automatically gets 5% savings every time she shops. Target has coupons on their site, and they also accept manufacturers' coupons. Target is so awesome that on a single item, you can use both a Target coupon and manufacturer coupon)!
Match that, Walmart!
And by sending manufacturers an email similar to the one I've put in italics, below, Erin was able to get hundreds of dollars of additional coupons for products she regularly uses, or coupons for products she would like to buy.
Hello, I am writing to let you know that my husband and I really enjoy your products. My favorite is the pineapple yogurt. I've also gotten the plain and mixed in honey and cinnamon. I love that Chobani is so smooth and creamy without the nasty aspartame after taste. My husband and I have been trying to eat mostly organic foods and more natural foods, but as you know, they are quite a bit pricier. We live on a budget and try to use coupons to help us stay within the budget. If you could send any coupons or samples of Chobani, we would really appreciate it! Thank you for such a wonderful product!
Erin Cheap Ass (not her real name)
She spends about an hour a week printing, cutting and organizing her coupons. That figures to almost $100/hour saved by couponing - is it worth YOUR time?
On a trip to the store this week, she bought ground chicken, carrots, ice cream, bread, Green Giant veggies, Stonyfield yogurt, and organic spinach - ALL FOR $9!
She wanted me to share her success with you! Here are some of her grocery receipts to tempt you to become a cheap ass too!
Do YOU have a proud cheap ass moment you'd like to share? Leave it in the comments, and I'll pass it on to Erin.