Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Penny Pinching

I started officially pinching pennies quite a while ago. I wanna say it was last year in Jan or Feb, but it could have been the year before. I am entirely unsure at this point. Anyway....

I get 5 copies of the Sunday paper every week so that I have 5 sets of coupons to collate, clip and file. While I was back in school I completely neglected my penny pinching resopnsibilities but I swore to Harold that once I was done with school I would be back on the bandwagon.

I still resisted. I can't help it. I look at those papers every week and just cannot bring myself to do the work. After our D-land trip Harold got the previous four weeks of papers and brought them into the house. Together we spent about 2 hours re-starting or PPing.

Yesterday I spent another hour or so doing the past few weeks worth of papers because Harold had seen the deals and wanted in on the action. We have a website we go to where they pretty much do all the leg work for us. They get all the ads, figure out which coupons go with which ads at which stores and they rate the deal from 1 to 5 stars, 5 being the best. It is amazing what adding a sweet sale and a coupon will do. I used to buy off brand cereal for about $2 per box. Then when I started PPIng, I would NEVER pay over $1 for namebrand cereal. NEVER. This time we paid about $1.20 for the namebrand stuff. This wasn't the best deal, but with the current market I was feeling pretty good about it.

Last night we went to Albertson's and to Wal-Mart. We accumulated about $150 in groceries for about $90, and that is my low-ball estimate. If I were to really look at what they charge for namebrand cereal, toothpaste and deodorant that figure would be way higher. The thing is, I never pay full price for that stuff, never, ever, ever. We were able to stock back up on cereal (Yay!), yogurt, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and deodorant, among other things.

Anyone who saw my bathroom cupboard before knows we had a seriously sweet stock of toothpaste and deodorant, shampoo and toothbrushes. After almost 1 full year of not PPing, we had depleted our supply. The good news here is that we actually had about a 1 year supply of these items.

I actually got quite a high out of my shopping trip. Knowing the time we spent with those dang coupons, looking at the website, printing off this week's bargains, marking the list, figuring how many of each, pulling coupons, spending so much time in the aisles to make sure we were getting the best deal possible, and coming away with so many items for so little, I was thrilled.

If you want dollar amounts, we spent an average of $1.30 per item. This includes all our items. If I took out the CPK frozen pizzas we bought for $4 each then the average would go down to less than $1 per item.

The sweet taste of victory, over high prices and raging gas prices. We won, We won!


Brittany said...

i know exactly how you feel... but you already know that i penny pinch because of you. thanks for turning me onto it! the only thing is i wish we had a wal-mart close by to price match. at least we're close to an albies which will let me use other store's coupons and sometimes that helps (with safeway's double coupons coupon). i don't know how you do it with the toothpaste and toothbrushes though. sometimes i can find a really good deal. i think i might just have specific tastes - i like crest. so i'm always waiting for that to be on sale.

congratulations on your really good deals! that is super cool!

Jules said...

A while ago I went to a Savvy shopper seminar to learn how to do all this. I have a ton of coupons that I need to do the same thing with. I just don't have a great way to store them. Do you a binder of some kind or a box? I got a binder to use and the lady said to get some baseball card sheet protectors I can't find them so by binder and coupons are still sitting. That post motivated me to get going. My SIL refuses for pay for the extra papers, so she dumpster dives on monday monring, she usually gets like 15 to 25 sets of coupons each week. I think that's a bit much, but she actually got like 25 boxes of cereal for free a couple of months ago, crazy. It is time consuming, but worth it. You go girl!

Jules said...

I would love that box, I really want to get going and having an avenue for sorting will really help. We will try to get out there soon, thanks.

Cote Corner said...

since you are penny pinching again I figured I'd tell you about the Harmons deal. You have to have the in ad coupon (save $10) but it's a 10 for $10 -the sale includes big G cereals: cheerios, golden g's, cookie crisp, and betty crocker fruit snacks and general mills snacks. Just a heads up!

Nelsonranch said...

My sis would be so proud! Way to go. Now I really need to start couponing. You've inspired me.

Erin. said...

See, if we kept in contact more, we could have been sharing penny pinching secrets long ago...I have been using the Savvy Shopper site for about a year, and am on the site almost daily looking for the next great this the site you use??