A slightly boring week in the life of a fairly average couponer

by Melody on July 31, 2011







Each week I will be sharing a round-up of all the different ways I saved our family money.  The purpose of this series is to highlight the fact that there are SO many different methods you can use to lower your overall budget that don’t involve mad-crazy coupon shopping.

I will even be mentioning those methods that may seem insignificant to you.  I truly feel that anything that saves time is saving money in some form or another.

Coordinating and maximizing my shopping trips

There was nothing we “needed” this past week at Fred Meyer, although there were some good deals.  I would not have made a trip, but we needed dog food and we have found the best price for us is at Fred Meyer.  I took a quick peek at the weekly deals and picked up a few things while I was there.

I try to only shop once, maybe twice, per week.  I’m not much of a deal chaser these days.  What I do, however, is check out the weekly coupon deals only IF I’m going to the store for a different reason (to return something, to pick up a gift, etc).  This saves me from making unnecessary trips and I’m never disappointed if the coupon deals are out of stock, since I had other reasons to make the trip to the store.







Homemade croutons

I hate wasting food, but I’m also not a huge fan of eating the butt ends of a loaf of bread.  I keep a gallon Ziploc bag in the freezer that I throw all my extra bits of bread, including leftover hoagie rolls and even hot dog buns.  Once the bag gets full, I chop everything up, toss with olive oil or melted butter and some seasonings and bake.  Crazy inexpensive croutons and no waste!

Frugal family getaway

Our family took a wonderful overnight trip to Liberty Lake this past weekend that was planned entirely around frugal activities and deals I was able to find.  Read more about our trip here.  It was so nice to get away from the “daily grind” and enjoy relaxed time with my husband and kids.  As relaxed as it can be with two toddlers, but still.

Another fabulous idea from Janice

Barter!  She went berry picking with a friend and the farm’s strawberry season was pretty much done.  They told her she was welcome to take a look and see what she could find.  She offered to pay $1.25/lb instead of the regular rate of $1.75/lb, since they were on the last legs of the season and they agreed, which ended up saving an additional $5!

I’ll be honest, I’ve never been super comfortable bartering for anything.  I can shop for a good deal all day long, but once it comes to actually negotiating, I leave that up to my husband.  I love Janice’s idea here, I would never have thought to even ask.

I would LOVE to hear how you saved your family money this week.  What methods do you find are the most efficient and effective?

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Aubrey July 31, 2011 at 9:07 pm

I made tortillas this week. After pricing out tortillas, I figured out that I can make about 10 tortillas for the cost of 1 premade one. I am like you and don’t do much deal chasing unless I am already out. However, I am trying to make more of my food from scratch becuase it is so much cheaper. I love your crouton idea. We should start doing that here.


Melody July 31, 2011 at 9:12 pm

I’ve been trying really hard to make do with what’s in our pantry and substitute ingredients. It’s been a really fun challenge (and very rewarding) to make things homemade that I usually would have just bought in the past.

Way to go on the tortillas, I’ve never even attempted them!


Julie B July 31, 2011 at 9:30 pm

Love this post. During July we’ve been focusing on using up what’s on hand too. I avoided even looking at the coupon deals because there were really no items we ‘needed’.

One of the ways I save money is running the “quick wash” cycle on my front loader washing machine. Most front-load models have this option. It washes just as well, in half the time and at half the electricity. I only use a full cycle for HOT bleach loads or heavily soiled clothes. It’s great!


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