Friday, September 3, 2010

8 Reasons Why You SHOULDN'T Use Coupons...

...according to Yahoo Finance. And of course, 8 reasons why you SHOULD, according to Annalisa. Enjoy. :)

Reason #1: You have to buy a newspaper.

Their Reasoning:
"This doesn't apply to any free coupons you happen to get along with products or in the mail, but once you pay for a newspaper, you've lost money. You then have to make up for that loss by using enough coupons to break even. Then, you have to use even more coupons to come out

My Reasoning:
When you can get the paper for $0.39 per week, coming out ahead only takes using one coupon per week. Or two coupons every other week. Or three coupons every third week. And, well, you get the idea. Not to mention the fact that most of us use WAY more than that.

Reason #2: Clipping Coupons Takes Time.

Their Reasoning:
"Yes, you can do it while you watch TV and turn "unproductive" time into "productive" time. But there are a lot of things you can do while you watch TV - mop the floor, prepare a week's worth of meals or actually let yourself relax and not do anything for once. Your time might be better spent on another activity."

My Reasoning:
Three words: Clipless Organizing Method. I only clip the coupons I'm actually going to use each week. It takes me about 30 minutes, tops each week.

Reason #3: Getting a newspaper invites lots of additional advertising into your home.

Their Reasoning:
"Advertising is powerful stuff - this is part of the reason why companies offer coupons in the first place. You might actually end up buying more stuff by having all those ads around, negating any savings you get from coupons. The same is true if a coupon compels you to venture into a store you wouldn't otherwise visit."

My Reason:
Is it just me, or are these getting worse? If you're that gullible to every piece of advertising that enters your've got other problems. Learn to love your recycle bin -- it's easy and effective. :)

Reason #4: Many of the coupons will be for things you neither need nor want.

Their Reasoning:
"Unfortunately, coupon circulars aren't customized to your shopping habits. If you are a die-hard bargain hunter, if may be hard for you to turn down a good deal, even if it means buying something you weren't planning on getting anyway. However, from a financial perspective, buying more than you need or want just doesn't make sense."

My Reasoning:
Being able to turn down a good deal on something you don't need is the one aspect of couponing that DOES take some practice. However, from a food-storage perspective, sometimes buying more than you need (to save for the future) is called smart.

Reason #5: Coupons can tempt you to spend your grocery dollars on things you shouldn't.

Their Reasoning:
"Coupons don't always market the healthiest foods. This might mean that they'll lead you to buy things that aren't very good for you. Anyone can see that clipping coupons that tempt you to purchase sugary cereals and fatty or salty snacks isn't the greatest thing for your health. If your idea of a healthy snack is more "I'll have an apple" and less "I'll just have one serving of potato chips," you're unlikely to find much in the coupon circulars at all that will interest you. Plus, if you have a monthly grocery budget that you stick to no matter what, coupons will only get you more food or different food - they won't truly save you any money."

My Reasoning:
Finally! This may be their only valid concern. If plan your weekly grocery shopping based off of the Smartsource coupon insert each week, you'll end up broke and 100 pounds heavier. That's where the Grocery Smarts lists come in! You can shop and eat the same way you always have, just at 50% - 60% less than before. It takes a little bit of self control to not buy every new fandangled product just because you have a coupon for it (see #4). But once you get settled into a routine, you're golden.

Reason #6: The same coupons tend to be offered over and over again.

Their Reasoning:
"After a few months of coupon clipping, you'll realize that you're repeatedly clipping the same coupons. This might work for you if you use the same products repeatedly, but it's not so great if you prefer variety and experimentation. You often won't use all the coupons you clip by their expiration date, so you'll have to toss that yogurt coupon that expired on June 30 only to clip another identical one that doesn't expire until July 31. This is time consuming - not to mention aggravating. The redundancy of coupons is especially annoying if the coupons are for items you don't even want to buy."

My Reasoning:
I don't know about you, but I quite enjoy the fact that there is always a valid Huggies coupon when I need it.

Reason #7: You might become a slave to coupons.

Their Reasoning:
"It can be very difficult to buy something without a coupon once you get used to using coupons. Knowing that you can get ice cream for $2.50 might make it difficult for you to spend $4 on it even though many times, it would be worth it to spend the extra $1.50 rather than pine for ice cream and cast longing glances at your freezer every night for three weeks until your next coupon arrives. You might also find yourself making more trips to the grocery store in order to purchase things only when you have coupons for them."

My Reasoning:
This is why we stockpile! (If you haven't come to a coupon class yet, you should.) When items I need and use go on sale, I buy enough to tide my family over until the next sale. There is always the proverbial ice cream in the freezer at my house! No pining necessary.

Reason #8: Shopping takes longer.

Their Reasoning:
"If you have to hunt up and down the aisles in search of the item you have a coupon for, you'll spend more time at the store. This could also lead you to spend more money, potentially
negating the savings you're working so hard to accrue."

My Reasoning:
In my experience, I save $50-$100 each week and it takes me 30 minutes of planning and 30 minutes of shopping. (And that's with an infant strapped to my chest in the Bjorn!) So you tell me. Is it worth it?

Mega Swagbuck Friday

Today is Friday which means MEGA swagbucks for searches. Instead of earning 5 or 10 swagbucks for a search, you could earn up to 50 or 100. So get searching!

Search & Win

What is Swagbucks?
It's a search engine, like google. Use it in place of your regular search engine and earn swagbucks every day that can be used towards gift cards and prizes.

How do I earn Swagbucks?
You can get swagbucks for taking the daily poll, surveys, searching, shopping, and more!

How many points to I need?
My favorite prize to redeem is the $5 Amazon gift card...because Amazon has everything! (I used my last gift card to buy Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags, lol.) It takes 450 points for a $5 Amazon gift card, which takes about a month or so to build up to. Not too bad for searching I do every day anyway!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

NEW! Rite Aid Prescriptions For Education

From Rite Aid's website....

"This fall, Rite Aid is partnering with Just Between Friends to provide an extensive PTA fundraising program that benefits both Rite Aid customers and their local PTA chapters.

With the Rite Aid Prescriptions for Education program, every time you, a friend, neighbor or family member transfers a prescription to Rite Aid with a coupon provided by your PTA, they’ll get a $20 gift card for themselves, plus Rite Aid will make a $5 contribution to their PTA unit.

It is an exciting program that gets your community invested in raising money for your PTA, while rewarding you.

If you are a leader of a PTA organization, a PTA parent, or are simply interested in more information about the program, please visit Just Between Friends for more information on getting your PTA started.

Get your PTA involved immediately in this unique fundraising opportunity for your school community!"

LINK to more info

Sounds like a nice little program to help earn money for your local school!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Smith's Deals (9/1 - 9/7)

Click HERE for a printable matchup of all weekly sales with manufacturer's coupons. Don't forget to add e-coupons to your Smith's Fresh Rewards card HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE. (Keep in mind that Smith's no longer accepts a paper MFQ combined with an e-coupon MFQ.)

{Print the Smith's coupon policy HERE.}

Sale prices:
  • Avocados, Haas, Small - $0.89
  • Corn on the Cob - $0.20
  • Cucumbers - $0.79
  • Grapes, Red or Green - $1.49/lb
  • Green Bell Peppers - $0.79
  • Green Onions - $0.50
  • Kroger Cottage Cheese, Dips & Sour Cream - $1.00
  • Kroger Cheese bars or shreds - $1.25
  • Heinz Ketchup, 40 oz - $1.50
  • Birdseye Steamfresh - $1.00

$2.50 Litehouse Assorted Dressings
-$0.55 MFQ (SS 6/27) or $1/2 MFQ HERE
= $1.94 - $2.00 each

$1.88 Dannon Activia or DanActive, 4 ct
-$1 MFQ (SS 8/8)
= $0.88

$1.00 A&W, 7-Up or Sunkist, 2 liters
-B3G1 free instant promo
= $0.75 each wyb 4

4/$14 Coke 12-packs
-B4G1 free instant promo
= $2.80 each wyb 5 (limit 5)

4/$12 Pepsi 12-packs
-$2 off instantly wyb 4
= $2.50 each wyb 4 (limit 4)

$1.88 Kelloggs Fruit Snacks, 10 ct
-$1/2 MFQ (RP 8/29) or $1 MFQ HERE
= $0.88 - $1.38 each

$1.88 Kellogg's Pop Tarts, 8 ct
-$1/2 MFQ (RP 7/11) (expires 9/5)
= $1.38 each wyb 2

$1.67 Kraft Salad Dressing, 16 oz
(double reward points)
-$0.55 MFQ (SS 8/29)
= $1.12

$1.67 Nabisco Snack Crackers
-$1 MFQ Wheat Thins HERE
= $0.67

$1.67 Quaker Cap n Crunch
-$0.50 MFQ (RP 5/16, RP 8/29)
= $1.17

$1.67 Quaker Life Cereal
-$1/2 MFQ HERE
= $1.17 each wyb 2

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

New National Catalina Offers

Ann over at Coupons, Deals & More has a new directory of national Catalina promos running now through September & October. That means these deals are valid at any store with a Catalina machine (in our case, Smith's and Kmart).

New promos include Betty Crocker, Nabisco, Nature Valley and more.

Check out the full list HERE and keep them in mind as you plan your grocery trips in the next few weeks.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Rebate: P&G Coupon Savings Booklet

P&G just released another sweet coupon book rebate. Spend $50+ on P&G brands between 8/20/10 and 12/31/10, and get a coupon book via mail filled with over $110 in coupon savings.

I was a little disappointed in the last coupon booklet, because it didn't contain any Pampers or Crest coupons (which are the ones I used the most last time). However, this new booklet DOES have these! Sweet!

Included Coupons: (three of each)

Always $1 Any one Always product
Zest or Safeguard $1 On any one Zest bar/body wash OR Safeguard bar/liquid hand soap
Bounce $.50 Any one Bounce
Bounty $1 Any one Bounty towel 6 ct. or larger
Cascade $1 Any one Cascade product
Charmin $1 Any one Charmin Mega Roll
CoverGirl $1 Any one CoverGirl product
Dawn $.50 Any one Dawn product
Downy $1 Any one Downy product
Duracell $1 Any one Duracell CopperTop 8 pk. or larger
Era $1 Any one Era product
Gain $1 Any one Gain detergent or FE
Gain $1 Any one Gain dishwashing liquid
Head & Shoulders $1 Buy one shampoo, get $1 off conditioner
Clairol $1 Any one Clairol hair color
Herbal Essences/Aussie $1 Any one Herbal Essences or Aussie product
Iams $1 Any one dry dog food or cat food
Luvs $1 Any one pack of Luvs diapers
Metamucil $1 Any one Metamucil product
Olay PCC $1 Any one Olay PCC or body lotion (UM)
Olay Skin $1 Any one Olay facial moisturizer
Old Spice $1 Any one Old Spice deodorant
Old Spice $1 Any one Old Spice body wash
Crest $1 Any ONE Crest toothpaste (4 oz or more) OR liquid gel (excludes Crest Cavity, Baking Soda, Tartar)
Crest $1 Any one Crest mouthwash 946 ml or larger
Oral-B $1 Any one Oral-B manual toothbrush
Pampers $1 Any one Pampers diapers
Pantene $1 Buy one shampoo, get $1 off conditioner
Pepto-Bismol $1 Any one Pepto-Bismol product
Pringles $1 Any two Pringles
Secret $1 Any one Secret product
Swiffer $.50 Any one Swiffer refill
Swiffer $3 Any one Swiffer WetJet
Swiffer $1 Any one Duster/Sweeper
Tampax $1 Any one Tampax 20 ct. or higher
Tide $1 Any one Tide product
Venus $1 Any one Venus Embrace

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Target Deals (8/29 - 9/4)

Bring a reusable bag to Target and get $0.05 credit per bag at checkout.

{Print the Target coupon policy HERE.}

$1.50 Campbell's Select Harvest Soup

= $0.50

$1.88 Kellogg's Pop Tarts x 2
-$1/2 MFQ (RP 8/1)
= $0.88 each wyb 2

There is also a list of all the items on temporary price cut (TPC) through 9/4/10 found HERE.

$7.99 Snuggie Blanket (found on an endcap in the bath section)
(try zip 90210, then click on "apparel")
= $2.99

$6.49 Tyson Fully Cooked Crispy Chicken Strips
-FREE Hidden Valley Ranch promo wyb Tyson
-$1 Tyson MFQ (SS 7/25, SS 8/15)
-$1 Hidden Valley MFQ (SS 8/22)

= $4.49 for both!
*Check out my frugal meal I love to cook with these HERE!

$3.00 Tosititos Chips x 2
-FREE Queso Dip wyb 2 chips -$1 Tositos MFQ (SS 8/1) x 2
= $1.33 each wyb 3

$7.99 Venus Embrace Razor x 4 (=$31.96)
-$2 MFQ (P&G 8/1) -$5 Target GC x 2 -$10 Olay/Venus MIR wyb $30+
= $0.99 each wyb 4

See more of this week's Target deals HERE and HERE and HERE.

Frugal Dinner: BBQ Chicken Pizza

My hubby LOVES this pizza. We actually fight over who gets to take the leftovers the next day to work for lunch. It can be a quick week-night meal, with items I already have on hand. I found this recipe ages ago on and tweaked it a little to my own liking (so feel free to do the same!). It matches up with a great deal on chicken at Target this week, so I thought I'd share. Enjoy!

BBQ Chicken Pizza
1/2 lb Frozen Chicken Tenders
1 cup Barbecue Sauce + a few Tbsps
1 Pillsbury Refrigerated Pizza Dough
2 1/2 cups Shredded Cheese, any flavors desired
1/2 Medium Red Onion, thinly sliced
3 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Cilantro

Defrost the chicken tenders in the microwave enough to cut them into bite sized pieces. Toss them in a bowl with a few squirts of BBQ sauce (just enough to coat). Roll out the pizza dough on a greased sheet cake pan. Spread barbecue sauce evenly over dough. Top with chicken, cheese and onion as desired. Bake at 400-degrees for ~20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly. Top with cilantro and serve.

Notes: For the cheese, we use whatever Kraft shreds I have in the freezer from my latest stockup. I think it works well with some Mozzarella and Colby Jack. We also use whatever barbecue sauce we have on hand; last time I made it we used Jack Daniels and it was wonderful. We also sometimes leave off the cilantro (because my hubby doesn't like it for some reason!) or the onion (because it doesn't sit well with the nursing babe), and it's still surprisingly yummy.

Cost Breakdown:
  • Tyson frozen chicken tenders - $4.49/bag (this week at Target), uses 1/3 bag
  • Cheese - $0.88/bag (at last Smith's sale), uses 1 1/2 bags
  • Barbecue Sauce - ~$0.70 (at last Smith's coupon rounding event), uses 1/2 bottle
  • Pizza Dough - $2.29 (at Ream's, reg price) or $2.99 (this week at Smith's, after rounded coupon)
  • Red Onion - ~$0.50 (Ream's)
  • Cilantro - ~$0.50 (Ream's)
Total = $6.80

Walgreens Deals (8/29 - 9/4)

{Confused? Learn how to shop at Walgreens HERE.}
{Print the *NEW* Walgreens coupon policy HERE.}

$2.99 Colgate Total Advanced or Enamel Strength Toothpaste, 4 oz
-$0.75 MFQ HERE
-$2 RR
= $0.25

2/$7 Irish Spring or Softsoap Bodywash, 15-18 oz
-$1 MFQ (All You Magazine, September 2010) x 2
-$5 RR wyb 2

$1.99 Walgreens Perfect Tampons, 8 pack
-$1.99 RR

$10 Irwin Naturals Healthy Skin & Hair Supplements
-$10 RR

$4 Breathe Right Strips, 10 pack
-$4 RR
-$1.50 MFQ (RP 4/11)

$2.99 Listerine Mouthwash
-$2 MFQ Listerine Zero HERE
-$1 RR

2/$3.99 Tostitos Chips
-$1 MFQ (SS 8/1) x 2
= $1 each wyb 2

2/$3 Campbell's Select Harvest or Chunky Soups (with in-ad coupon)
-$1 MFQ HERE x 2
= $0.50 each wyb

$0.79 Nabisco Cookies or Crackers
-$1/2 MFQ HERE
= $0.29 each wyb 2

$1.99 Domino Sugar, 4 lbs (with in-ad coupon)
-(no coupons)
= $1.99

$3.99 Crest Clinical Toothpaste
-$0.75 MFQ (P&G 8/29)
-$2 Walgreens Q (in-store)
= $0.99

$7.99 Tylenol Precise Pain Relieving Patch, arms neck & legs, 4 pack
-$5 in-ad coupon
= $0.99

Monthly Deals:

$2 Carmex Moisture Plus Lip Balm
-$2 RR

$4.99 Carmex Lotions
-$4 RR
= $0.99

$10 Zegerid Capsules, 14 ct
-$10 MIR (prints at register)
-$4 MFQ (All You Magazine, August 2010) or $3 MFQ (SS 8/15)
= $3 - $4 profit!

Rite Aid Deals (8/29 - 9/4)

Don't forget to use the $5/25 RAQ this week (expires 9/30/10).

Just a reminder that Rite Aid has joined Upromise, so don't forget to register your card HERE.

{Confused? Learn how to shop at Rite Aid HERE.}
{Print the Rite Aid coupon policy HERE.}

$0.89 Gain Dish Liquid
-$1 MFQ (P&G 8/29)

$2.99 Nivea Lip Care
-$1 +UP Reward
(word on the street is limit 1 per card)
-$1.99 SCR
-$1 MFQ (All You Magazine, September 2010)
= $1 profit!

$4.00 Pantene Restoratives, Beautiful Lengths Haircare
-$2 +UP Reward (word on the street is limit 3 per card!)
-$2 MFQ (P&G 8/29)
*Qualifies for the $10 Olay Rebate wyb $30+.

$3.99 Boudreaux's Butt Paste, 4 oz (I love this stuff!)
-$3 September Video Values Coupon
-$2 MFQ (SS 4/11) or $1 MFQ (SS 8/29)
= FREE to $1 profit!

$3.00 Nivea for Men Bodywash, 16.9 oz
-$2 +UP Reward
(word on the street is limit 1 per card)
-$1 MFQ (RP 7/25, RP 8/29)

$3.59 Art Skills Poster Lights
-$3.59 SCR
*Buy $30+ school supplies, get $10 +UP Reward.

4/$5 Art Skills Poster & Craft Paint
-$4 SCR wyb 4
= $1.00/4
*Buy $30+ school supplies, get $10 +UP Reward.

$3.99 Bic-Matic Grip Mechanical Pencils, 5 ct x 4
-$1/2 MFQ (SS 8/1) or HERE x 2
-$2 SCR wyb $10+
= $7.97/4
*Buy $30+ school supplies, get $10 +UP Reward.

$8.99 Pampers Jumbo Pack Diapers
$3.49 Pampers Wipes
-$1.50 MFQ (P&G 8/1)
-$2 +UP Reward
(word on the street is limit 2 per card!)
-$3.49 Free wipes wyb diapers MFQ (P&G 8/1)
= $5.49 for both

$5.99 Tide Laundry Detergent
-$1 MFQ (P&G 8/1, P&G 8/29)
-$1 +UP Reward
= $4.99

$5.99 Tide Stain Release, 18 ct
-$3 MFQ (P&G 8/1, P&G 8/29)
-$1 +UP Reward
(word on the street is limit 5 per card!)
= $1.99

2/$7 Pantene Haircare
-$2 +UP Reward wyb 2
-$1 MFQ Stylers (P&G 8/1) or $1/2 Shampoo/Conditioner (P&G 8/29)
= $2/2 or 2/$4
*Qualifies for the $10 Olay Rebate wyb $30+.

2/$8 Tums or Beano
-$1 +UP Reward wyb 2
-$1.50 Beano Meltaways MFQ (RP 5/2) x 2
= 2/$4

$17.99 Durex Condoms, 24 ct
-$3 in-ad RAQ
-$2 August Video Values Coupon
= $12.99

$2.99 Garnier Fructis Haircare x 6
-$1 MFQ HERE (or tearpads) x 6
-$5 +UP Reward wyb $15+
= $1.15 each wyb 6

$5.99 Garnier Nutrisse Hair Color x 3
-$2 MFQ HERE x 3
-$2 September Video Values Coupon
-$5 +UP Reward wyb $15+
= $1.65 each wyb 3

2/$4 Speed Stick or Lady Speed Stick
-$1 +UP Reward wyb 2
-$0.75 Lady Speedstick MFQ HERE x 2
-$1 August Video Values Coupon
= $0.50/2

$5.49 Finish Quantumatic Starter Kit (50% off, regularly $10.99)
-$3 MFQ (SS 7/18) or HERE
= $2.49

$2.50 Best Foods Mayonnaise
-$0.75 MFQ HERE
-$1 +UP Reward
= $0.75

$2.99 Always or Tampax
-$1 SCR
-$1 MFQ (P&G 8/1, P&G 8/29)
= $0.99

$3.99 Zilactin Gel or Swabs
-$3 September Video Values Coupon
= $0.99
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

$3.99 Listerine Mouthwash, 500 ml
-$1 September Video Values Coupon
-$1 +UP Reward
-$1 MFQ (RP 1/3)
= $0.99
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

$5.99 Oral-B Toothbrushes, Select Varieties x 2
-BOGO MFQ (RP 8/15)
-$1 MFQ (P&G 8/29)
-$2 +UP Reward
= $1.50 each wyb 2
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

2/$3 Colgate Toothpaste, Select Varieties
-$0.75 MFQ (SS 8/29) x 2
-$1 +UP Reward wyb 2
(word on the street is limit 2 per card!)
= $0.50/2
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

$5.49 Sensodyne ProNamel Toothpaste, 4 oz (B2G1)
$5.49 Sensodyne ProNamel Toothpaste, 4 oz (B2G1)
$0.00 Sensodyne ProNamel Toothpaste, 4 oz (B2G1)
-$1 MFQ HERE x 3
-$1.50 August Video Values Coupon
-$1.50 September Video Values Coupon
= $1.66 each wyb 3
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

$2.69 Crest Toothpaste, select varieties
-$1 SCR
-$0.75 MFQ (P&G 8/29)
= $0.94
*Qualifies for the Oral Care SCR.

School Supply Scenario #1:
$3.59 Poster Lights
$3.99 Pilot Frixion Pens or Highlighters x 3
$3.99 Bic-Matic Grip Mechanical Pencils, 5 ct x 4
-$5/25 RAQ
-$1 Frixion MFQ x 3
-$1 Frixion RAQ
-$1/2 MFQ (SS 8/1) or HERE x 2
-$1/10 School Supplies CRT RAQ (printed last week)
= $19.52 + tax
(And get back $6 SCR, $4.50 MIR (on the back of Frixion) and $10 +UP Reward == All this for FREE!)

Oral Care Scenario #2:
2/$3 Colgate Toothpaste
$2.69 Crest Toothpaste
$3.99 Listerine Mouthwash, 500 ml
$3.99 Zilactin
$5.99 Oral-B Toothbrushes, Select Varieties x 2
-$5/25 RAQ
-$0.75 MFQ Crest

-$0.75 MFQ Colgate x 2
-$1 MFQ Listerine
-$1 Listerine RAQ
-$3 Zilactin RAQ
-BOGO Oral B Toothbrush MFQ
-$1 Oral B MFQ
-$1/10 Oral Care CRT RAQ (from last week)
= $5.41 + tax
(And get back $5 +UP Rewards, $1 SCR and $10 RA GC from Oral Care SCR == $10.60 profit!)

Diaper Scenario #3:
$8.99 Pampers Jumbo Pack
$3.49 Pampers Wipes
$2.99 Nivea Lip Care
$4.00 Pantene Beautiful Lengths
$3.99 Boudreaux's Butt Paste
$3.00 Nivea for Men Bodywash
-$5/25 RAQ
-$3.49 Wipes MFQ
-$1.50 Pampers MFQ
-$1.00 Nivea lip MFQ
-$2 Pantene MFQ
-$3 Boudreaux's RAQ
-$2 Boudreaux's MFQ
-$1 Nivea bodywash MFQ
= $7.47 + tax
(And get back $7 +UP Rewards and $1.99 SCR == all this for $1.50 profit!)

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