coupon organization: execution

Jan 6

*eeeek* – maybe that title sounds a little scary. ??
how about shopping results? or follow-through with your list you worked so hard on?
either way, once you have your list put together, it’s time to execute your plan and save some money!
now that i’ve detailed how i organize my coupon binder and how i assemble my coupon shopping lists – i thought it would be fun to share my result from today’s walgreens trip. this result is based solely on the list i assembled wednesday night and shared with you thursday morning.
here is what i came home with…
my total out of pocket for all of the above was $37.96.
i also walked away with a $2 register reward for my next shopping trip and more catalina coupons – including a coupon for a FREE package of feminine hygiene products.
my receipt says i saved $44.21.

anytime i spend less than i saved = a big win for me.

(i guarantee you, if i blindly went to target and purchased only the 3 laundry detergents, toilet bowl cleaners and medication, i would be close to that $37 amount. hummm, maybe i will test that theory!)

for anyone interested in knowing exactly what was on my list….here you go!
*Kleenex 4-pack bundle: on sale for $4, used a $.50 manufacturer coupon = $3.50 for 4 or $.88 each
*Soft Soap: on sale for $2.79, used in-ad coupon to bring total down to $.99, used $40 manufacturer coupon = $.49
*Dawn dish soap: on sale for $1.99, used in-ad coupon to bring total down to $.99, used $.25 manufacturer coupon = $.74
*Lysol toilet bowl cleaner: on sale for $1.99 each, bought 2, used $1 manufacturer coupon = $1.49 each
*Tide laundry detergent: on sale for $5.99, used $2 manufacturer coupon = $3.99
*All laundry detergent: on sale for $3.99, bought 2, used $1 manufacturer coupon, used $.75 manufacturer coupon = $3.11 each
*Nivea body wash: on sale 2 for $7, bought 2, used 2 $1 manufacturer coupons = $2.50 each (plus i earned that $2 register reward)
*Ester-C gummy vitamins: on sale buy 1 get 1 free, bought 2, used 2 $2 manufacturer coupons = $1.50 each
*Nature Valley granola thins: on sale for $2.99, used $.75 manufacturer coupon = $2.24
*Advil children’s medicine: on sale for $5, used $1 manufacturer coupon = $4 (this was on my list of needed medications that i shared here during the medicine bin re-org!)
*Studio 35 nail polish remover: on sale for $1.79, used $1 coupon from the january coupon booklet (pick up in store near ads) = $.79
if you read my post yesterday, you will remember i had found a great deal on a coupon blog making that nail polish remover free. in the end, it wasn’t. sometimes when i find a deal on a coupon blog and am led to believe i can get it for free and in the end it’s not, it’s a disappointment. but that’s it – nothing more. it’s fine – i only had to pay $.79 for something i will definitely use.
and those small *bummers* also serve as a reminder to me that sometimes i am better off going through the weekly ad on my own because i have much better luck that way – and it ends up being accurate.
yesterday i also mentioned i might have a moneymaker on GOT2B hair lotion. that was another deal i found on a coupon blog. when i was in the hair care aisle, there was plenty of product left and all of the GOT2B hair items were either on sale or clearance (if you use their products, head on over because there were some good deals to be had). but in terms of that moneymaker item, my store didn’t have this offer for the hair lotion. they had the hair lotion, but i would be paying $4.99 for an item i had never tried before. so i walked away without buying it at all.
i wanted to share those 2 examples because it’s a good lesson in that you can’t always rely on info received second hand. the blogs are great and, i think, more often than not they are accurate. i did find it strange that 2 of the items on my list that were both found on blogs didn’t pan out though.
there are highs and lows when you either get a good deal or not. and that’s ok! don’t let that keep you from couponing or leave you feeling depressed. we all love the hunt for a good deal. no matter what, i guarantee you will feel great about your efforts and how much money you saved. don’t let that one letdown keep you from checking out those blogs anyway. even though the 2 items didn’t pan out,  i still saved a lot of money and came home with items we will use. that is enough of a success for me.

also, try to remember that when you’re starting out you are still learning the ropes. try your best not to get wrapped up in shows like “extreme couponers” and expect to have HUGE savings at checkout. just an FYI (even though the people featured on the show clearly say this), those shoppers spend up to 40 hours (or more!) a week planning their shopping trips, scouring the internet for printable coupons, purchasing many sunday papers in order to get that coupon insert, clipping all of their coupons, etc. most people i know don’t have the luxury of an extra 40 hours in their week to plan like that. do you?

also, from what i have read on a few coupon blogs, many of those couponers on the show have committed “coupon fraud”. i’m not saying all of them – but several of them have done so. try not to let that show’s end result sway your attitude about saving money.

personally, i have about 30 – 60 minutes a week that i dedicate to my coupon shopping list. and that time is spread out over the entire week, not in one sitting. after my kids go to bed, i may sit at the desk in our office and look online or look through my ad’s. but that is it. i am highly satisfied with my results after spending almost no time putting together my list. i’m not an extreme couponer but yet you can see how much i saved in the above listed shopping trip.

and i’ll always be your helper and cheerleading in couponing, if you ever need the help or someone to pat you on the back for your efforts! 😉 any savings = savings!

are you thinking about shopping at walgreens (or another store) this week after reading my coupon organization series? if so, i’d love to hear about your experience and how much you saved. be sure to share your results in the comments section!

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