I’m on a mission to save our family some money (and who isn’t?). Previously, I’ve given a half-hearted go at the coupon clipping/sale shopping thing… it has always just been easier to rely on our bi-weekly Costco run, a Whole Foods run once a month and in between runs to Fred Meyer (natural foods has a good selection of GF foods).
Our family spends about $1000 (yes, that is 3 zeros) a month on food and household supplies. This budget includes everything we would typically buy at the market or Costco, such as toilet paper, laundry supplies, personal hygiene, etc… There are 7 of us, so when you break that down to a per person cost, it’s pretty reasonable. Whether or not its reasonable, that’s a lot of money.
So, last week we started on a new path. I’m shopping 3 super markets (Fred Meyer, Albertson and Safeway), which will greatly reduce our Costco expenditures (we will purchase items like Ecos laundry soap, Stretch Island Fruit Leathers and Hubs Rockstar at Costco because they are much cheaper there).
First adventure out… we got in a great deal on fresh (bulk) whole chicken breasts (boneless) and lean ground beef for $1.88/lb. This is less than meat we buy at Costco, which typically runs between $2.19-$2.69/lb. We also hit a good sale on cereal and a few other items. In all, we spent $61 and saved $62 (sales only, no coupons). (We bought at least a month’s worth of meat.)
Today I headed back out and found Post cereal on sale at Albertson for $2.07/box. Bonus, if you purchase 2 boxes, the price dropped to $1.57/box. Also, Albertsons has that nifty Catalina printer at the register which prints coupons based on your purchase. I had also visited the Post site and printed out 2-$2.00 off coupons for a new cereal.
At the (self-check) register, I rang up the first 6 boxes of Post cereal including one that I had a coupon for. I also grabbed just under 5 lbs (two bags) of purple grapes on sale for $.99/lb and another Sunday paper (must have extra coupons). My total on this round came to$14.08 with a savings of $26.03 (sale and coupon). The register then spit out a $5.00 off my next purchase from Post (requires purchase of Post cereal to use discount).
Then I ran my second set of cereals through… six more boxes including one with the $2.00 coupon. Once all the discounts applied, I got 6 boxes of cereal for $2.42 (savings of $26.52). The cost breakdown was: $2.07 per box x 6 boxes = $12. 42 (which is a good price), then the price dropped to $1.57/box because I purchased quantities of 2 ($12.42-$3.00 = $9.42). Then we applied my $2.00 off manufactures coupon ($9.42-$2.00= $7.42). Lastly, we applied the $5.00 Catalina coupon ($7.42-$5.00= $2.42). I also got a second $5.00 off Catalina coupon which I will use when I go back with my 3 day only double coupons (good Sun/Mon/Tues).
I also ran into Fred Meyer today and caught the last day of their current coupons. They had milk/orange juice/chocolate milk 1/2 gallons 10 for $10. I also grabbed 1o boxes of Kraft Mac N Cheese for $.50/box and jars of Bertolli Alfredo sauce (normally around $3.50/jar) for $1.50 each. So, we came home with 2.5 gallons of milk, 1.5 gallons of chocolate milk, 1 gallon of oj, 10 boxes of Mac and 2 jars of alfredo for $18.00. Oh, the at register printer at Fred Meyer spit out a coupon for a cross necklace (reg. $75) for $29, so I grabbed one of those for TeenGirl’s Easter Gift, she was the only one I didn’t know what to get… and a cross necklace with tiny diamonds seemed perfect.
The surplus mac and cereals are great additons for the food collection barrel for our churches food bank. Obviously, these foods are for the non- gfcf peeps in our household (and the daycare kiddos).
I figure if we can save money on the basics, then I can still splurge on the organic fruits and veggies (usually we buy organic milk once it’s marked down, but today they were $5.00/gallon).
I have a difficult time saving on GFCF foods… I do get Enjoy Life coupons (via website and email) which are great,especially if I catch a sale (usually $2.99 each or 2 for $6 sales). GFCF cereal is hard to find on sale in my experience… though I can sometimes find a good price on Rice Chex.
This week, I also spent $15 at Goodwill, purchasing a lined rain coat for K3, a dress for K2 and an Adventure Bible for Kids. I was very disappointed to see that Goodwill no longer sells any toys.