Sep 30, 2011

Couponing 101

SO.. here's the basic email I've been sending to people with questions.. a basic Couponing 101 if you will

So, have you checked out TLC's show 'Extreme Couponing' ? This show is what got my couponing kicked into high gear. I started couponing The Krazy Coupon Lady is a great website. She's also been on the show. On her site she has a section for 'beginners'. There she has a tutorial about the Couponing Binder.

The binder is the heart of it all. My binder currently is a 3in trapper keeper. It has 41 sections and currently weighs 9lbs. I use the baseball sheets to store my coupons. In my binder I also carry the Coupon Store Policy for all of my local stores. I also have a notebook for keeping track of my sales and a calculater to help me find unit prices quicker. KLC also has a nice chart of prices of various items - When you should buy a 3mo supply or 6mo supply. Now I rarely get to some of the prices she has. Many stores no longer double coupon.

SO basically we get as many sets of the coupons on Sunday as we can. Here there is a gas station that will give you a free paper if you buy $20 worth of gas on Sunday. So I usually get $20 on my way to work and on my way home. My mom does the same so that there is 4 sets. I work at a casino that has a hotel so I take the coupons from there 5 Sunday papers. My mom works at a hospital so she does the same thing. We usually end up with 10-15 sets of coupons. I also have a few girls here that 'swap' coupons and a few other people that know that I coupon who will give me their coupons. You can also print coupons on line. Red Plum Smart Source are just a few. We clip every single coupon. Then we divide them up by their catergories and put them in the sleeves. We try to go thru the binder once a week and get all the expired ones out.

Now as I said we clip EVERY coupon. Now right off the bat there are coupon we don't need - Pet supplies, men's hygine, old people stuff, ext. These coupons, along with my expired coupons get sent overseas to the military. Families with military members overseas can use coupons up to 6mo after their expiration date. Coupons For Military Here KCL's info on that. We have actually receieved a thank you letter from a family in Germany for our coupons. It's pretty cool.

OK! So now you have the binder. Now you have to find 'Match-ups'. The trick to couponing is only using your coupons for Sale priced items. This will double your savings. If your store doubles coupons then even better! There are many websites that will find the match-ups for you. Some sites you can even pay and subscribe to like The Coupon Game. I don't use any of the pay-for websites. I usually use, again KCL's matchups. She lives in Southern Utah so some of her match ups don't work for me out here in Iowa. You can always google and find websites as well. I usually just wait for the sale ads to come in the mail then sit down and go thru each item that is on sale and find it in my binder. I make a list in my notebook and compare different stores and make my shopping list. Some people will then remove the coupons from the binder and take only what they will need. I don't.

Each and everytime I go shopping I take my binder. I walk up and down EVERY item and compare every sale or clearence item to my binder. Remember that most items go on sale every 3-6mo so the trick is to stock up on items when you can get them cheap, until they go on sale again. Great things to look for are Buy One Get One Free sales. You can then use 1 coupon for each item, even tho the 2nd item is free. Your now getting double the savings. Also if you have a BOGOF coupon for an item that is on sale BOGOF your now getting 4 items for the price of 1. KCL's info on BOGO savings

SO... that's the basics. Again KCL has an amazing website and there are zillions of other websites to check out. I could sit here and talk all day about coupons.. lol it's sad! I hope that helps and good luck!

A change...

HELLO! Aw.. poor food blog. Well.. Life keeps throwing punches and I'm doing my best to keep up! I no longer have Internet at home so I haven't been blogging!! lol I have been cooking.. but nothing great. Made the french onion soup last night tho.. Yum Yum!!
Well.. I know I said on here long ago that I was no longer doing cooking as my career.. but here I am again. I started cooking at a local casino. It was supposed to be a temp job until I found a new pharmacy job.. Well 8 months later and I'm still there. I was promoted after 3 months to a Food and Beverage Supervisor and have been having a blast. I'm not in the kitchen nearly as much as I used to be.. But it's been great learning how to supervise, schedule, and what not. We're now revamping out buffet to a pasta house and I've gotten to help out a lot there.
Well.. other than that I've started couponing. I watched a few episodes of TLC's Extreme Couponing and decided to kick my little excuses of couponing into high gear. I've been couponing on an extreme level for about 3 months now I think and I average a 50% savings. I usually boast my savings via FB and get many questions on how I'm doing it and what not. I've sent out a 'couponing 101' email out to a few of my friends but have decided to start blogging it. Since this poooooor lil blog hasn't seen much attention I figured I'd just combine the 2.. cooking and couponing! :)
I will TRY to blog more and I'm hoping to get more followers.. so PLEASE! Feel free to follow and ask me questions and what not. And ideas are welcome! Thanks for reading!!