Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Grocery shopping

Armed with coupons and the sale add, I went shopping last night.

As I mentioned, I'm still learning the ropes of managing sales and coupons to get the best deals, so more often then not I still end up spending more than I'm saving. This was definitely the best percentage of savings vs. spending I've ever gotten...

The only thing I paid full price for was the milk @ $3.29 a gallon.

I also bought:

4 boxes of pasta @ $0.29 per box (normally $1.79)
6 boxes of Green Giant veggies @ $0.33 per box (normally $2)
2 packages of tuna -- FREE (normally $1.50)
1 McCormick spice @ $2.99 (normally $4.99)
1 bag of flour @ $1.49 (normally $2.99)
2 orange juice cartons @ $1.25 per carton (normally $3.79)
4 cans of cream of mushroom soup @ $0.50 per can (normally $1.34)
2 sticks of deodorant @ $0.50 per stick (normally $2.50)
2 beef sausage links @$1.20 per link (normally $4.39)
2 packs of bacon @ $1.35 per package (normally $5.69)

and the grocery store was running a sale of buy two packs of bacon, get FREE eggs, thus:
1 dozen eggs -- FREE ($2.09 value)

Food prices are substantially higher here than in the midwest, so I'm especially excited about the meat I was able to purchase. Chicken is our staple meat, and though we both really enjoy it (and I'm always on the look out for creative recipes!) it is nice having a little variety. [smile]

I came home with $76.89 worth of groceries -- for only $26.03!
(A savings of $50.86!)

Has anyone else taken the 'coupon plunge'?
I'd love to hear your stories!!


Caroline said...

This is an inspiration to me! I recently began being more mindful of how much we spend at the grocery store, but with a picky man it's like a sport to make it all come out to the number I'm hoping for. We used to spend around $125/week on groceries (for two of us!) and I've got us down to $75 which was no small feat. The next thing to go are our "favorite things" which add up so now we're allowing ourselves one "treat" each a week.

My favorite coupons are ones for non-pantry items like, toilet paper, and shampoo because those will break the budget if they all fall in the same shopping purchase.

I would love to hear more of your tips and hints!

cleaning supplies

Anonymous said...

Wow Bethany! I am only 16 but this whole coupon thing has been a real inspiration to me to be more frugal now when I do some shopping for mom so that I"m in the habit when I have a home of my own someday!!! (Can't wait!) This really was a blessing and I plan on telling mom about this so she can look it up!
~Hannah B.

Linda N. said...

I try to use coupons every time I shop, and it is very rewarding! One thing I try to watch for though, is the occasional times where something may be on sale or I have a coupon for it, but another generic brand (as long as quality isn't an issue) may still be a better price.
Blessings to you and your shopping! :)

forever4christ said...

Thanks Bethany,

Your blog really inspires me to be more carfully with my money . thanks for sharing.

Miss Emily Rachael said...

Me and my mom are all about the coupons. It's like a thrill when we see how much we're saving! Congratulations on saving so much!! lol.

Emily <3

Ruth Ann said...


I think it is so cute to see things like this on your blog because you have different things to do now that you are married. =) Saving money is so much fun, and I'm sure you bless your husband!

Thanks for making me smile today. =)

Our Army of Six said...

That is really good. All of that for $26!! I don't know what method you're using to learn, but I LOVE Ellie Kay's "Shop, Save and Share" I got it used for $3 :) And it really explained a ton and taught me all sorts of tricks for couponing and sale shopping! The other place I learned was to get a trial of to learn how she did it and then cancelled it and just do it myself :) I have been lazy in this area the last several months and you have inspired me to start it up again!! Please keep sharing!!

Anonymous said...

Great job on the coupon saving. I am still single and at home, but I buy some stuff for myself, and always like it when I can get a good deal with coupons, but that is amazing. :)

JoyfulJewels4Jesus said...

Great job, Bethany! Wow! What savings! I'm sure you are such a blessing to your husband.
Our homeschool online group had a "thread" a few years ago with dozens of frugal and money-saving tips that I have saved and are very helpful. I also enjoy "catching mistakes" on the screen at the grocery store with my brothers. :)
Let's see...we also get glass-bottled milk from the grocery store and return them (you get $1.50 for each bottle). Meal planning also helps very much, as well!
Thanks for sharing all of the tips, Bethany! I always enjoy learning new tips!

Joyfully in Jesus,

Anonymous said...

No we do not because I do not know how to do . Could you explane where you get your coupons.

Marie said...

Hey great job Bethany! My mom is SO into coupons!(She buys six papers a every week!) She keeps a close eye on the sales at different stores and always gets stuff for super cheap or free! Keep up the good work!

Addie said...

Wow Bethany! I should start looking up coupons!!!

Ellie said...

Wow, can you teach me how to do that!?!
You make it look possible. I should try it!

My Bright Corner said...

Good for you, Bethany! I was excited to see that you got the cream of mushroom soup for only 50cents. The price of soup is ridiculous in my opinion!

julia said...

Where do you find your coupons? Maybe you could share some tips about how you did that!
Sometimes we'll find coupons in magazines/newspapers etc. but they always seem to be for things we never buy. (like canned biscuits etc.) Do you use the coupons on items that are alreay on sale?
Thanks! ~julia

Anna said...

Nice job, I love couponing, its quite addictive. I do all the grocery shopping for my family and on Monday I spent $19 and saved $69. I was pretty happy. :)

Anna B. said...

WOW!!!! I am impressed!!! I think I am going to take a trip out to have you teach me how!!! Way to go, Bethay!!! Love ya <3

Annie said...

Bethany! WOW! You saved $ incredible!
P.S. I love seeing these "married woman" posts on your blog. :)

Addie said...

We are wondering where you get your coupons. Do you get them out of a paper or off the internet?

Tabby said...

Bethany! That's awesome! I love stuff like that! I'm such a bargain shopper! It must be so much fun having your own house and kitchen and groceries... :) I wish I could have seen you longer than a quick hug when I was out there! Miss you! And by the way... GOOD JOB!

Delilah said...

You did a wonderful Job!!! It takes a while, but it is so fun. My husband loves to tell everyone how much I save. I don't know if you have ever read Shop, Save, and Share by Ellie Kay, but that is an awesome book and that is how I got started couponing:)

Anonymous said...

I work in TOPS Friendly Markets, a grocery store chain along the north eastern US. My store actually does the largest volume in the chain. Here are a few 'insider' tips ...

- the highest priced items are eye-level so look up or look down.

- name brand on sale is still sometimes more expensive than store brand.

- shop at Aldi's - they have name brand stuff for cheap (how's that for being loyal?!)

- my store often has 'dollar doublers' in the weekly ad, which double a dollar coupon to $2 off. It's sweeeet!

- find the out-of-the-way, hidden clearance spot in the store where things are marked down (this is why you always take all your coupons with you - combine this with a coupon and get a good deal!)

- don't be afraid to ask the store manager to substitute an item if they are out - and still be willing to use the original coupon ... and don't forget to get a raincheck for later! (sometimes it's actually better because later you may acquire a coupon for a raincheck item - sweeet again!)

- be careful of impulse or persuasive buying -- the managers have meetings (literally every week) to figure out what they can display next to what to increase profit (oh, we need bacon next to the eggs!)

- ALWAYS double check your receipt before leaving the store - computers are not always right! And at my store, if there is a computer error between what rings up and the shelf tag, you get a $1 coupon for your next order (we just don't broadcast that!)

- say Good Morning or something to the 'guys in ties' who work at the store - when they see you on a regular basis and get to know you, they're more willing to make exceptions :)

- I'll try to brainstorm some more!

Stand fast in Christ,
Amy in NY

Kenna said...

Wow! That is quite the savings.
Do you get any of your coupons online? If so where?

The Marshall Artists said...

We love coupons! Keep it up, Bethany! You're doing an amazing job...I just know your man is impressed :)


Josiah and Abi Wissmann said...

WOW! You inspire me to go and clip those coupons! Way to go!! And I wish we could do our grocery shopping together! :) Love ya!

Grace said...

Wow Bethany! That is AMAZING! Way to go!!! I'm sure your are an wonderful wife. Dan is so blessed!!!

Anonymous said...


That's GREAT!! What a wonderful job! We do coupons too, and I found out you can get a TON of coupond (from everything to grocerys to other stores) online! Some you can join an email list, or others you can just print right off!

I also learned that a lot of foods we take for granted can be made homemade just as easy or easier! It's also a lot of fun making your own...and there's a lot less weird "additives".

Good luck,

Mary cecilia.

Cowgirl_E said...

My mom coupons like crazy!! She is a MAJOR pro and is always coming home with random stuff saying, "I got this for free," or "They payed me to take this." We looooove it!! =)

Haylee said...

Ah, Bethany - your food prices are so low compared to ours up here in Alaska! We buy a gallon of milk for $5.89! What a good shopper, and what great savings!

Simply Living said...

I love getting good deals!!! And I love seeing others doing it... Thanks for the encouragement!! I've been doing it for a while now and was feeling a bit burned out. But this was the inspiration I needed. Blessings to you as you learn and save!!

Daniel said...

That's awesome, Bethany! Keep it up - that kind of frugality is a great thing, especially as a young couple. Sounds like you're enjoying it, too! :)

God bless you both,

Daniel Bryson, MI

Australia said...

Way cool! You should check out Courtney's blog...she's BIG on clipping coupons and getting insane savings all the time. :)

God bless!

Amanda said...

Goodness me, I've used the odd coupon every now and again but I've never saved quite that much money! You've inspired me to give it a go though and see what other offers I can find. We have a lot of BOGOF offers in England (buy one get one free) which is how I tend to stock up on non-perishable items like shampoo etc.

Sofia from Spain said...

It certainly is lots of fun seeing how other people manage. We are a family of seven and we make two three course meals a day, from scratch, plus breakfast and mid afternoon snack and we spend around 10 euros a day. (About $12).If you want any more information let me know, Bethany. As a sister in the Lord and an avid reader of your blog I would be more than pleased to be able to give you some frugal recipes!!!!!

Bethany said...

Sophia! Yes -- I'm always looking for new recipes! You can e-mail me at photographsbybeth[at]

Would love to hear more about how your family does it. Do you have a blog?

Sofia from Spain said...

Bethany, this is just the quickest way back to you.It is late here and tomorrow at seven....Thanks for answering so quickly. I will enjoy sending you a little of everything.

God bless you all, Sofia