So I have to be honest with you...couponing does take a bit of work. I love it, and I get really excited about good deals I find for my family, or to give to others. I take comfort in having a cushion of supplies - like detergent, cat food, toiletries. I love knowing I have the makings for plenty of meals. But shopping in this different way - of stocking up in addition to buying perishable items - takes time and effort. I don't mind looking through the deals - I like it actually. I don't mind the grocery shopping - I only go to 2 stores usually each week, and I have the luxury of either going while my girls are at school in the afternoon, or my local ShopRite has free childcare if they are with me. I don't mind cutting coupons.
I DO mind organizing the coupons. UGGHHHHHH. Right now I am 2 weeks behind. So I have a large baggie with lots of cut coupons, all mixed together. It will take me at least a few hours to organize them into like piles (ie - cereal, yogurt, juices, etc) and then fill them in to my binder. And because I have some sort of homemaker ADD thing going, I can't just sit and complete this task - I stand at the kitchen counter, coupons all spread out, and all day tomorrow I will take several minutes here and there and file some coupons. It will annoy me, tire me, and bore me.
But I will do it, because I have figured that my couponing yields me some serious cash. For a stay at home mom to earn anywhere from $20-$100/hr or more depending on the week, that is a good part time gig. I don't actually "earn" it I guess, there's no money going into my pocket. But there's a whole lot less money going OUT, so I count it as the same.
This week is a bit dry at the grocery stores, so I'll spend my couponing time organizing, and maybe an hour getting a bit of produce and spending some Rite Aids UP rewards that are about to expire. And I'll hit up CVS to get their free stuff (soap and Bayer off the top of my head). Good luck this week friends - and remember, a dollar not spent, or a dollar saved with a coupon, is a dollar in your pocket.
So what was this post really about anyway. Well, I guess my point is - couponing is not all roses. But it can be fun, it IS rewarding, and it's the easiest way I can think of to create more wiggle room in your budget. Feel free to ask me a question that's been on your mind!