Playing the Coupon Game!

by Camille on May 12, 2011

I realize that TLC’s Extreme Couponing show seems to glorify hoarding more so than being fiscally responsible, but the first time I saw it, I was hooked. The fact that someone could run more than $1,000 of merchandise over the scanner and pay only $40 was astounding. I mean, even if you don’t need 70 bottles of mustard, you must admit there’s a certain feeling of triumph in “beating” the store.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to start stockpiling canned meats under my bed or croutons in my sock drawer, but I have always liked a bargain. So, with the time afforded me during by my new profession as a SAHM and the desire to help save money now that we’ve bid farewell to my income, I have become a full-fledged, color-coded coupon binder-carrying MOM.

I’ve only been clipping coupons for a few weeks now, but I’m already amazed at some of the deals I’ve managed to find. The blog, Money Saving Mom has been the most helpful and thorough guide in leading me to coupon salvation. Stealing an idea from her (and if you ever read my blog, please forgive me $ Saving Mom….I will fall and kiss your toes shall we ever meet!), I’d like to share the results of today’s shopping success:

Stuff I Got at Walgreens 5/12

Money Saving Mom taught me the drug store game, by which you focus on matching coupons to the different items the store discounts each week or the items that have in-store cash rewards. Walgreens has Register Rewards (RR), and every week, after RR, there is usually one item that is free or incredibly discounted. So here’s the breakdown…and remember, I’m learning. Already I realize I could have done better with a bit more careful planning.

10 Gillette Proglide Razors: Normal Price – $ 9.89 x 10 = $98.90 before tax.

6 Carefree pantiliners: Normal Price – $.99 x 6 = $5.94 before tax. (Sorry boys, I know girl products freak you out, but they are a necessary fact of life. Deal.)

18 Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaners: Normal Price – $2.99/2 = $26.91 before tax

1 Enfamil Nighttime Formula: Normal Price – approx. $13 before tax (Not on sale, but a necessity!)

Total Value of Stuff: $144.75

But, using coupons and register rewards, I only paid $82.84 for all of the above. AND….I still have $30 of RR to use on my next purchase, so really I only spent $52.84.

SAVINGS...drumroll please….$91.91! Not bad, huh?

Now, do I need 18 toilet bowl cleaners at the moment? No. But I can leave all of the above items off my shopping list for the next several months to a year. They won’t go bad, and since I have room to store them at the moment, it seemed like a good deal.

I’m not sure how “extreme” I’m going to get, but I did have a warm, fuzzy feeling of success when I walked out of Walgreens today. And I’m going to have really clean toilets for a WHILE. :)

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