As I was grocery shopping today, I found myself encountering all of these "new" higher prices and I was getting a little confused and wondered if I was really getting good deals or not. I would say that 80% of the groceries I purchase are on sale and with a coupon. Since I have seen the sale price in the sale flyer and when I know that sale is really good, especially when I have a coupon, I buy the item. Both of our grocery stores ad match each other.
Traditionally in our community Wal-mart's food prices are higher than the local two grocery stores, until today. Hy-Vee had Honey Bunches of Oats - 17 oz. box on sale for $2.50. I had two $1.00 off coupons for Honey Bunches of Oats with Triple Raisins. I was satisfied that this was indeed a good sale. So, I bought two boxes.
I went to Wal-mart to pick up my prescriptions and to see if they had any good day old bread. Well, I happened to pass the cereal aisle and there it was - Honey Bunches of Oats were priced at $2.23. Ugh. Now, we are only talking about 27 cents here per box so it is not like I was out a lot of money until I walked around and looked at a few other items. Wal-mart was cheaper on the majority of those items.
So, my new strategy is to make up my list of items along with the sale prices, and then I will go to Wal-mart to check their prices first. If something is cheaper, I will buy it. Then I can drive to the other two grocery stores on the way back home to buy the other items. It takes me 5 minutes to drive to Wal-mart from my house so it is not that far away.
I go to Wal-mart once a week to pick up raw hide treats for the dog. I used to just drive out there and come right home, but now I am working hard at writing down where I need to go, figuring out the direct routes and getting it done in one afternoon so as not to use up a lot of gasoline.
My other trick was that instead of using a coupon envelope to take coupons to the store, I now use clothes pins. Yes, that's right - clothes pins. Clothes pins are to me what duct tape is to a man. I seem to use them for a lot of things such as bag clips, to clip receipts together and now coupons.
I put all the coupons on one clothes pin. As I put the items into my cart, I remove the coupons from that clothes pin and put them on the other clothes pin. When I go to check out, I simply remove the coupons from the clothes pin and hand them to the cashier. It is so easy to reach into my purse for two clothes pins instead of trying to sort through an envelope. Also, I can easily flip through the coupons because they are attached to the clothes pin. I have dropped my coupon envelope and had some spill out. If I drop a clothes pin, those coupons aren't going anywhere. I still take my coupon notebook to the store just in case I find an in store sale and I have coupons in my notebook for that item.
I plan to take some blue paint and yellow paint used when I painted the entry way to paint these clothes pins. I may even sponge on another shade to add a little pizzazz.