Tuesday, December 8, 2009

It's a Jungle Out There

So I went out of town for the weekend (for work) and took my coupon book with me. I knew that I was going to have to do some grocery shopping because there was a Christmas Party pot-luck that I was going to, and I live 5 hours from the site of the party. So I knew that I wouldn't be making something at home and lugging it all that way. Therefore, the coupon book could possibly have been used. Unfortunately, it wasn't - I paid full price for a couple of things! Oh, well. It was for a good cause - FUN!!

The weekend was great - good food and fun were had by all. When I got home Sunday evening, I started talking to Little Man about what we were going to do the next day. Go to Kohl's to return a coffee maker that I bought on Black Friday (I didn't realize it at the time, but you have to buy the cone-shaped Melita filters for it, and I don't want to have to do that, even though I was only going to end up spending about $7 on the thing with a sale and rebate!), do our grocery shopping, buy a Christmas present or two.....you know, the usual week activities with Christmas shopping thrown in there. When we woke up Monday morning, we started talking about our errands, and lo and behold I remembered something crucial. My coupon book was in the back of the car. The car that Sweetie drives to work. Drats!

We did need some essentials from the grocery store, so I decided that we had to go. But I'm so not good at not buying everything we need when I go! So I looked through the Grocery Game (if you want more info about that, visit this link) and clipped a few coupons that were great deals, made a short list, and off we went.

At first, when I started carting around my coupon book, I felt a little bit awkward with it, kind of like it radiated light and drew attention to me, wherever I went. It does get a lot of attention, that little book! Anyway, yesterday I felt almost lost! You know the feeling, like when you realize you're out of the house and you don't have your cell phone. You have to come up with a game plan about how to survive this day without a phone. Which is completely ridiculous, considering all the time we lived without cell phones! Anyway, I digress. I had the same feeling about my coupon book! I also didn't have my receipts. I had a few too many in my billfold on my weekend trip, and decided to just put them all in an envelope so I could have extra room in my little, non-back-breaking-sized purse. And I threw that envelope in the back of the car with my coupon book. I had this feeling like I'd been thrown into a situation that could possibly fall under the term "cruel and unusual punishment," and I found myself planning out the day without those items. And it was a little bit difficult! We had to put off our outings until Little Man had taken his afternoon nap so I could regroup and have a formalized plan!

I did very well at the grocery store, though! We came out of there only spending $20!! We had enough food in the freezer to have dinner (probably for the rest of the week, honestly) and I only got the necessities (milk and bread this time) and a few low-cost, great-deal goodies (Cinnabon bars for less than a buck!). And I also bought several jars of peanut butter to donate to our local food pantry (something I do once a month). So, if I stick to my $75 a week budget, I still have $55 that I can spend when I make my second trip to the grocery store this week (with coupon book in hand, of course)!

As I said in my post last week, I'm going to work really hard to pay off our Mommy-Mobile, and sticking to my $75 a week grocery budget is a must! I'm sure I could get away with spending even less than that, but I still consider myself somewhat of a newbie at couponing, so I'm afraid to push it and feel the sting of failure. I'm pretty hard on myself when I set goals, so I want to make sure they're definitely achievable before I set out.

I'm hoping to finally start getting around to achieving the goal I have for this blog, too. And that goal is to list great money-saving and couponing deals in the West TN area. Lots of the great deals I read about in other couponing blogs don't work for me because I don't get the same coupon inserts as other places get. I just want to alert people to the deals that won't work here and possibly find deals that are working here so more people can save some money!

Well, that's all from me for now. It's a jungle out there - don't get stranded without your coupons like I did!! :)

Your Go-To Fru-"gal"

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