to rescue disappearing dollars...

In case you haven't heard or felt it yet, fuel and grocery costs have all been sky-rocketing in the past month.  When I filled the gas tank in our mid-size sedan this weekend it cost me over $62.00 at $3.699 a gallon for regular.  And, it's still on a rapid rise.  Wallet fail!

Although I work part-time, my commutes are long. Forty minutes to my home office and two hours on my Brooklyn days (about once a week).  That makes the pump, in addition the grocery check-out, painful.  There isn't anything I can do about my gas consumption as I need to get to work and have no one around me for carpooling (and it doesn't help that we live in one of the gas cost "red zones").  But groceries?  I can save there. 

Now, I'm no extreme couponer.  Not even close.  Over the past few years, I have clipped coupons here and there and, occasionally, even remembered to use one or two at the check-out. Since the beginning of this year, I have been much better about both clipping and using coupons but, they have been less than organized.  Basically a big jumble of clippings thrown in a zippered pouch in the diaper bag.  Not really helpful when I needed to put my hands on a particular slip of paper.
This week, determined to put some order to the chaos and start shaving some more off of our grocery bill, I finally sat down, labeled my coupon wallet and got them all sorted. 
I have my coupons separated into the following categories:
  • Baby
  • Baking
  • Breakfast
  • Cans
  • Condiments
  • Dairy
  • Frozen
  • General Grocery
  • Snacks
  • Paper Products
  • Cleaning/Laundry
  • Toiletries/OTC
The store where I most frequently shop prints relevant coupons at check-out that are good for a limited time and only at that store so, I've added those right in the front so they are easy to spot. The space right behind the zippered section I'm earmarking for dining out coupons. 

What's the plan from here?  This weeks' grocery list is written out and I've noted "coupon" and the brand next to each item where I have one on-hand.  Before I go shopping, I'll take those coupons out of my organizer and clip them to my list so they are handy and get used.  I'll have the wallet with me in case I need to pull out something extra. I'm hoping that between shopping sales, meal planning and couponing, I can spare my bank account some of the economic sting this month has in store!

I'll update now and again with my savings and any tips that would be helpful to pass along.  If you have any tips to share, please leave a comment!


Anonymous said...

Well done! I always use my coupons! Love them. Also, sometimes other stores will take competitors coupons (the ones that print out at checkout).

Lindsey M. said...

Where did you get your coupon wallet? I am hunting for a new one. Thanks!

Laura said...

I was going to ask about your wallet too - I really need to get better with coupons and that wallet doesn't look HUGE like some I've seen.

Mrs. Boom said...

I purchased the coupon wallet in the office/stationery section of Target. It was the only type they carried and was available in several colors - around $4, I believe.

nfaband said...

No tips here Jen (I don't do the grocery shopping here DH does) ... but it sounds like you're on the right path and soon will find yourself counting the dollars saved, which is always a good thing.

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