Monday, June 17, 2013

Grocery Shopping Week 2 of the $30 Grocery Challenge

Here is week 2 and while last week seemed to take me extra time in the stores with the multiple transactions and multiple stores, this week has taken me extra time in the list process.
This week Meijer and Kroger are having similar promotions.  Meijer is having a Buy 8 get $8 off, Kroger is having a Buy 4 get $4 off.  Both of which are fantastic sales the problem I had was narrowing my list down to fit into my small budget.  There were so many fantastic deals I could have went over my $30 in the blink of an eye.  However I was good,  I kept things in check and narrowed my list down.

KoolAid Jammers- $0.99 used a$1.00/2 coupon paid $0.99 for 2
Skittles $0.50 each used a $0.50/2 coupon that doubled to $1.00=2 for free
Dove Chocolate bars $0.50 each used a $0.50/2 coupon that doubled to $1.00=2 for Free (I bought 4)
Kraft Homestyle Mac & Cheese $1.29 used a $1.00/1 coupon=$0.29 (I bought 2)
Miracle Whip $2.49 used a $1.00/1 coupon=$1.49
Philly Cream cheese $0.99 used $0.50/2 coupon doubled to $1.00=$0.99 for 2
A1 steak sauce $1.99 used $0.55/1 doubled to $1.10=$0.89 (I bought 2)
Kraft Cheese Singles $1.49 used $0.50/2 coupon doubled to $1.00=$0.99 each (I bought 2)
Jack's Frozen Pizza $2.50 used $0.75 coupon that doubled to $1.50=$1.00 (I bought 2)
Delifresh Lunch Meat $1.49 used 2-$1.00/2 coupon=$1.00 each (I bought 5 and received a $4 Catalina Coupon printout at checkout)
Oscar Meyer Hot Dogs $0.99 coupon $0.50/2 coupon that doubled to $1.00 (I bought 2)
Mott's Fruit Snacks $2.00 used $0.75 that doubled to $1.50=$0.50 (I bought 1)
Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage Links $1.68 used $1.00/1 coupon=$0.68
Nutella $2.49 used $1.00 coupon=$1.49 each (I bought 2)
Oscar Meyer Bologna $0.99 (I bought 3 and was supposed to get a $2 Catalina printout but aparently  that offer had ended without me realizing because I didn't get the printout and the customer service people couldn't find any information about it)
**I used the $4.00 catalina that printed from the Delifresh lunchmeat purchase to buy
Angel Soft Toilet Paper $4.99 used $0.55/1 coupon that doubled to $1.10=$3.89
and Bread=$0.85 
Total=$4.99 (with tax)-$4 Catalina= $0.99
Pampers Wipes $0.99 used $0.50/1 coupon that doubled to $0.99 making all 5 I bought Free!
Cascadian Farms Cereal $1.99 used $0.85 coupon that doubled to $1.70 = $0.29 (I bought 2)
Smart Balance Butter Spread $1.59 used $0.50/1 coupon that doubled $1.00= $0.59 (I bought 2)
Juicy Juice $1.88 used $1.00/1 coupon= $0.88 (I bought 2)
3 Gallons Milk =$2 each (these were on sale at Giant Eagle)
2 lbs Grapes $0.97/lb
Total Spent at both stores = $35.83
The total was supposed to be $33.83 because I thought I would be getting a $2 Catalina for the Oscar Meyer Bologna which was going to be used to pay for the 2lbs of grapes I bought.  Whenever I need toilet paper or lots of toiletries I give myself no more than $5 wiggle room.  What is the reason for this you may be asking?  Well lets face it, its hard enough to buy enough food to get by for $30 but when you add toilet paper, laundry detergent, cleaning products, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, etc, it can be near impossible to not go over budget.  Another reason for the wiggle room is that I don't buy toiletries every week and the only thing I buy regularly is toilet paper, which depending on the sale and the week I can usually make it fit into the budget.  I make my own laundry detergent, dishwasher detergent, cleaning products, and buy my shampoo, conditioner, bodywash, etc when it is at the lowest price possible and buy enough to last me 6 months to a year.  So when other people are spending $4/bottle for shampoo, I normally pay $1.00 or less.  Deodorant I don't pay more than $0.25 for women's and $0.49 for men's.  I never pay for toothpaste, and shave gel is not more than $0.49 for men's and $0.20 for women's.
Once you start couponing and start a small stockpile you will get a feel for the sales and what items you can get at certain prices.  I know I can get deodorant for under $0.49 so I don't buy it unless it's at that price.  When it is on sale I buy 4 which lasts me until the next time it's free or at the price I want to pay.  That's how you start saving the most, by stocking enough of the item to get you through until the next sale when the item's at the lowest price.
If you coupon for nothing else, which would be crazy might I add, coupon for toiletries.  These are the items that can take up the bulk of any budget during any given week and contributes nothing to the bellies of your hungry family.

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