Detroit Deal Diva

Archive for the ‘Couponing’ Category

It is so good to be back. I actually started writing another post, but I wanted to get this posted while my daughter was  asleep.  I have had other shopping trips, but I just have not had the time or the energy to post any of my recent  trips.  Even this post is almost a week late.  This past weekend, I went to Meijer,  Rite-Aid and Bath and Body Works. 

I have not shopped at Rite-Aid in a while. I used to shop there quite often until they became to coupon-unfriendly. My last Rite-Aid experience was a nightmare.  After that, I just wrote them off. A couple of weeks ago they had some really good deals on Stayfree pads and Special K Cereal and the thought of letting  those deals pass me by was too unbearable, so I bit  the bullet and gave it another try.  I went to a different store than where I had previously shopped and thank the Lord, the cashier and the manager were really nice.  I was only able get 6 packs of the Stayfree, but they were out of the cereal, so I got rainchecks for both. I went back this past weekend and picked up 14 more packs of the Stayfree along with some other items.

Rite Aid 1/15/11

  • (6) Stayfree Pads-$2.50 ea.
    • used 3 BOGO MQ
    • used 3 $1/1 MQ 

 Total OOP Cost=$5.40 including tax (.90)~Total Up+Rewards Rec’d =$6.00~Total Savings=$19.44

Rite-Aid 1/22/11-transactions #1

  • (2) TGIF Snacks-.97 ea.
  • (2) Pepperidge Farms Goldfish-$1.50 ea.
  • (1) RA Tissue-$1.00
  • (2) Excedrin Extra Strength-$3.99 ea.
    • used (2) Free coupons
  • (2) Halls cough drops-$1.50 ea.
    • used (2) $1/1 MQ
    • used $6.00 Up+Rewards

Total OOP Cost=$1.66 including tax (.72)~Total UP+Rewards Rec’d=$5.00~Total Savings=$28.37

 

Transaction#2

  • (14) Stayfree Pads-$2.50 ea. w/raincheck
    • used (7) BOGO MQ
    • used (7) $1/1 MQ
    • used $5 UP+Rewards

Total OOP Cost=$$8.60 including tax ($2.10) (Final cost was actually$7.60 after I discovered a missed coupon)~UP+Rewards Rec’d=It should have been $14.00, but the  UP+ didn’t print because of the raincheck, so they gave me CASH.~ Total Savings=$50.36

Total for all 3 transactions  OOP=$14.66  Total UP+Rewards (CASH) Remaining $14.00~ Total Savings $98.17

At Bath and Body Works I was able to get 3 items for only .53 cents. Right now B&BW has a coupon available to get a free travel size item with any purchase.  To minimize my cost,  I purchased  a cover for the Pocket hand sanitizer for .53 (including .03 tax) and I was able to get a 3oz. bottle of Moonlight Path lotion for free.  This past weekend they were also offering a free bottle lotion of their newest scent “Carried Away”.  unfortunately but the time I got there they were sold out so, they were offering the body mist as a replacement.  Free is free and I was happy to get a free bottle of body mist.

Finally, on to my Meijer’s trip. 

Transaction #1

  • (2) Carefree pantyliners-$1.04 ea.
    • used (2) .50/1  MQ-doubled to$1 ea.
  • Benefiber-$3.49
    • used $4/1- overage given
  • Enfagrow formula-$18.99
    • used $5/1 MQ
  • (9) Old Orchard juice-3/$5.00
    • used 3 BOGO MQ
    • used (3) $1/1
    • used (3) .50/1- two were doubled to $1.00

Total OOP Cost=$14.82 including  tax (.26)~Total Savings $30.91

Transactions #2

  • (2) Carefree pantyliner-$1.04 ea.
    • used (2) .50/1-doubled to $1.00 ea.
  • (3) Old Orchard juice-3/$5.00
    • used (3) .50/1-two were doubled to a $1.00

Total OOP  Cost=$1.89 including tax (.07)~Total savings=$8.92

Transactions #3

  • (1) Carefree pantyliner-$1.04 ea.
    • used (1) .50/1-doubled to $1.00
  • (3) Old Orchard juice-3/$5.00
    • used (3) .50/1-two were doubled to a $1.00

Total OOP  Cost=$1.82 including tax (.03)~Total savings=$8.22

Before I started couponing, Walmart was my go-to store for  most of my groceries and household purchases.  Unfortunately, Walmart does not double coupons nor do they have their own store coupons.  Since Walmart lacks those two essential money-saving benefits, I do not shop there very often. Occasionally,  Walmart does offer the best deal on some items so, I make at least one or two visits per month.   In an effort to use some coupons before they expired I made an “emergency” trip on November 30 and then to my own surprise,  I made another trip on Saturday.  They were both good trips and I got a lot of free “stuff’.”

November 30 Trip

  • Pringles Extreme $1.67
    • Free coupon from FB
  • (6) Gain dish detergent  .97 ea.
    • (6) $1/1 MQ 
  • Sobe water $1.00
    • Free coupon from Heads or Tail contest
  • (4) Tide (travel size) .97 ea.
    • (4) $1/1 MQ 
  • (2) Ivory bar soap $1.02 ea.
    • (2) $1/1 from P&G Mailer
  • Campbell soup $2.08 (Not pictured)

OOP $1.82 Saved $14.67

December 4 Trip 

  • Poinsettia $3.50 (Not Pictured)
  • (2) Cottenelle Fresh wipes $2.48 ea.
    • (2) Free coupons (Snail Mail)
  • (2) Welchs Essentials juice $2.50 ea.
    • (2) Free coupons (Snail Mail)
  • (3) Old Spice body wash (travel size) .50 ea.
    • (3) $1/1 MQ P&G Mailer (The cashier wouldn’t give me the overage)
  • Mitten clips $2.00
  • Hat $2.50
  • Baby Toothpaste $2.97
  • Advil $3.62
    • Free coupon (Snail Mail)
  • (7) Morton sea salt $1.00 ea. 
    • $1/1 MQ 11/14/10 RP

OOP $12.23   Saved $22.08

With the economy being what it is, saving money has become a priority for most families.   As a result coupon usage is at an all-time high. This increase helped open up a new niche in the blogging world. Many blogger  have taken advantage of this need and started writing blogs dedicated to showing us how to save money in just about every aspect of our daily spending.

I rely on my fellow bloggers for all of the invaluable money-saving information that they share. There are a lot of really good “Frugal Blogs”, so when I decided to write this post it was difficult for me to narrow it down to just 10. The blogs on my list are the ones that I frequent most often. All of the blogs on my list are focused on saving money but, each one has something unique about it that keeps me coming back. 

1. Money  Saving  Mom-This blog has informative and well written articles  covering  topics such as how to monetize your blog and how to pay cash for a house. 

2. Hip2Save-This was the very first frugal blog I visited and it is still one my go-to sites for daily deals and freebies.  It is updated numerous times during the day  allowing you to take advantage of some the more time sensitive deals.

3. Totally Target-The name says it all.  If you want to know anything about shopping at Target, this is the site for you. The writer also started a Target forum which is a great place to connect with other Target shoppers.

4. Couponing to Disney-In addition to daily deals, this site offers helpful information for anyone planning a Disney vacation.  You can learn how to have a spectacular  trip without breaking the bank.

5. Bargains to Bounty-This site  has weekly coupon matchups for several grocery stores in the Greater Detroit area.  My favorite weekly matchups are the ones for Meijer.

6. The Mommy Reporter-This blog is a new discovery for me.  It’s only been on my go-to list for about a month.  The articles are interesting with a lot of useful information for being a successful “Mommy Blogger.”

7. Meijer Madness-This site is dedicated to all things Meijer.  Considering the fact that Meijer is my favorite grocery store. This site is is very helpful to me when I’m  making my weekly grocery list.

8. The Coupon Goddess-I read  this blog simply because it is well writen and I enjoy the witty and often humorous posts.  The writer is also a supreme couponer and a generous donor.

9. Penny Pinching Diva-This is another blog that I read becasue it is engaging.  Depite the many challenges she faces, the writer is very open about her life and I have become a little  emotionally invested in her experiences.

10.  Who Said Nothing in Life is Free-This site  almost always has at least one or two deals that I never see on any of the other blogs.  Her posts are short and to the point and that they just to cut to the chase.

These are my 10 favorite frugal blogs.  I know there are many other awesome blogs, but I have learned that you  have to pick a few good  blogs to follow or you will become overwhelmed with the vast amount of information that is available.

When trying to establish your go-to list, I would advise you be pick blogs that offer infomation that is useful to you and  focus on the goals that you are trying to accomplish. You also want to choose blogs that speak to you or touch you in some way.  I would reccommend that  you visit  a number of sites just to see what’s out there. Add the sites you like to your “Favorites”. In time you will notice that you are visiting certain sites more regularly than others and your go-to list will emerge.

Please leave a comment describing  your favorite money-saving blogs. 

Another one of my Frugalnista YouTube  friends  is having an awesome giveaway.  GroceryGurus is giving away a $100 American Express Gift Card  and all you have to do is leave a comment on her giveaway video  and  share her video on Facebook, Twitter, etc.  This post is the sharing portion of my entry.  If you want to learn the ins and outs of  couponing and saving lots of money,  you should definitely check out her channel.  I have learned so much from this Frugal Diva and I’m sure you can too. The contest ends on October 15, 2010.

I thought I was prepared for my shopping this past Saturday, but my CVS trip went completely awry. I will not bore you with the details, but let’s just say that I was not very happy with my OOP cost.  I let my daughter’s necessities (Pull-ups and formula) get low and had to make purchases at less than ideal prices. This led to me having overall high OOP costs all day.  I minimized the damage as best I could. LOL  It goes to show that even the most coupon savvy shoppers have off days.   It is also why stockpiling at rock bottom prices and managing your stockpile is so important. You do not want to get caught having to pay full price, especially for diapers/training pants.

No worries, it happens and I look forward to next weekend. Now on to my shopping haul. 

CVS-There were a couple of purchase mishaps, but I will try to simplify the breakdown.

  • (4) boxes of Quaker Oatmeal $2/$5.00-used (4) $1/1 9/12/10 RP
  •  (2) Revlon Lipstick -$6.99/ea-used (2) $2/1  (no longer available)
  •  (4) Right Guard Deodorant $2.99/ea-used (2)$1.50/2 8/15/10 RP
  • (4) packs of Huggies Pull-Ups $8.99/ea-used (4) $2/1 printable
  • used $3/15 CVS Q
  • used$10.00 ECB
  • used $2.00 ECB

Total Value=$$107.52    Total OOP=$41.46    Remaining ECB’s=$16.00    Total Savings=76%

Next stop.. Meijer 

  • (10) Boston Market frozen entrees-$2.20/ea-
  • (2) Hidden Valley Ranch Farmhouse Dressings-$2.50/ea
  • (3) Campbell Chunky soup-$1.25/ea
  • (2) Enfagrow Toddler formula-$18.99/ea
  • $5.00 OYNO coupons are from purchasing the Boston Market dinners ($5/OYNO wyb 5 or more dinners)

Total Cost= $81.54     Total OOP=$37.40   Total Coupons & Store Promos=$44.14    Total Savings= 54%

I know that saving 76% and 54% is nothing to sneeze at, but I have exceeded my weekly shopping budget  ($50-$75) and I haven’t even gotten to my Target shopping trip.  I will show my Target purchases in a separate post.     

These are some coupons I found in Meijer during my last shopping trip.  I found a sheet with 4 Meijer brand laundry detergents in the front of the store where the sales circulars are kept.

I also found a $1.50/1 Huggies Pure and Natural (Meijer store) coupon.  This coupon can be stacked with a manufacturer coupon and a sale for some inexpensive diapers.  Thankfully my daughter is in training pants now, so I have no need for those. 

I also found a store coupon for $1/1 Gerber Graduates cereal bar or cereal twists.  Just like the Huggies coupon this coupon can be stacked with a manufacturer coupon (if you can find any).  I signed up with Gerber and they occasionally send me coupons for savings on various products.

The last coupon I found was a manufacturer coupon for $1/5 Kraft Easy Mac.  I found these on a tearpad in front of the Easy Mac.  Meijer has Easy Mac on sale this week for .99. with the coupon they would be just .79 a cup.

 

***UPDATE*** Check out the video for this trip here.

I am continuing my  posts about my holiday weekend shopping trips.  Walmart used to be my go-to store for bargain shopping especially for groceries and baby items. Over time I noticed that their prices were often being matched by Target and Meijer, so that increased my shopping options. 

Once I started supercouponing ( The act of using coupons to such an extreme level that it enables you to shop and purchase items for very cheap or free.) I learned that shopping at Walmart was not the best store for me to get the biggest bang for my grocery bucks. Unfortunately, Walmart does not double coupons (like Meijer) and they do not have store coupons that can be gloriously stacked for amazing savings (like Target and Meijer).

I now only shop at Wal-Mart when I have coupons that are best used there or I need to purchase items that I do not have and will not be able to get a coupon for.  Therefore, I only shop there once every 6-8 weeks.  I have to admit though, I always feel a bit nostalgic whenever I go to there.  I really used to be in love with Wal-Mart, but alas I am more coupon savvy now and I must go where the deals take me. :)

Now on to the shopping details.

(3) 11oz Gain Dishwashing Liquid-$1.00/ea.

-used $1/1 coupon ~ 8/29/10 P&G Saver

7 pk dishwashing cloths-$3.00

(2) Dixon no.2 pencils-$.88/ea

Birthday card for my sister-$3.50 (A little pricey, but she’s worth it.)

(2) Large boxes of Crunch and Munch-$1.00/ea ( The small boxes where $.99, umph, riiidiculous)

-used $1/2 ~ August All You Magazine

(1) Ruffles potato chips-$1.98

(2) Ball Park bun-size hotdogs-$2.00/ea

-used $2/1 ~ Facebook coupon (no longer available)

(1) Kikkoman Teriyaki marinade-$2.00

-used B1G1  here (The cashier took $2 off )

(1) Kikkoman Sweet and Sour sauce-$1.42

-used $1/1 here

Total-$22.57     Total OOP-$12.24  (includes $ .67 tax)

Total Saved $11.00 or 49%

Missing from the photo is the Kikkoman Sweet and Sour Sauce.  My niece made off with it like a little bandit. She needed it for her eggrolls.

Next store: Meijer

I have wanted to start a blog for several months, but I didn’t have the first clue as to how or where to begin.  I set up my WordPress account and then….NOTHING.  I didn’t know where to go from there.  It seemed as if there was a never ending stream of information on blogging. I found myself overwhelmed with information and writing a post seemed like such a daunting task.  

I had so many grandiose ideas about how I wanted my blog to look and about what I wanted to write about.  I studied other blogs, took a novels worth of notes and even watched tutorials on You Tube.  Initially, all of this  pushed me to do….. NOTHING.  I still could not get moving until … I realized that I  just needed to write about something, anything.  I needed to write without regard to what people would think. I needed to stop being concerned with critisim.  I just needed to write.

There were several bloggers and videographers that offered invaluable insight  which eventually led to my  “blogging ephiphany”. I have to say thank you to SPARKWISDOM on You Tube.  She is one the most positve and inspiring people I have had the pleasure of encountering.  I have learned so much and scored many a deal thanks to Hip2Save, Totally Target, Money Saving Mom and Couponing to Disney.  All of these ladies have been so inspirational and I want to send them all a giant THANK YOU. 

For now, I intend to write about whatever I feel like writing about. I intend to have fun. I will share things about me, my hobbies, my passions, my frustrations, my loves, my likes and most assuredly my dislikes. For anyone visiting my blog I ask that you please be patient. I will get better. Cut me so slack if my posts are not always eloquent or witty or even reasonable.  At times it may seem that I am all over the place and I probably will be as I try to find my footing with this blogging experience.

I hope you will enjoy this ride with me!


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