I have spent most of day two trying to organize my coupons and make a plan of attack for shopping day tomorrow. I really have no idea where to start. I’m trying to take advice from other couponing websites, but I’m already a bit overwhelmed. I finally got my coupons clipped, in order, and filed in my dollar store (got to be thrifty) portable accordion file. Where do I go from here? Is it better to make a list of things I need and try to find coupons for them? Or should I be looking at what store I can get the best deal at while using the coupons I have? Do I need to look up every store’s flyer and compare prices? This is going to be way more time consuming than I ever imagined!
To make this experiment fair, I should disclose my normal shopping habits. I’m not proud of it, but I’m a spontaneous shopper. I rarely make a list and I tend to go with my emotions of how I’m feeling at the time of what I buy. On the rare occasion that I’m planning a meal and know the recipe already (most meals I tend to choose a recipe depending on what I have in my fridge and cupboards), I usually end up walking from one end of the grocery store to the other and back again because I keep forgetting exactly what I need. I usually buy more than I want to at the grocery store because it looks good, and I can’t go into the drug store without picking up ten things that I don’t need because I want to try them. I do tend to buy on sale, though, and if I find a really good price on items that I use a lot of like almond milk or toothpaste, I will buy a bunch and keep them in my cupboard for when I need them (this I learned from my mom). I also don’t tend to eat a lot of processed or packaged food, so most of the time I end up spending all my money on produce, meat, fish, and eggs (which are going to be hard to buy with coupons). Although I definitely spend money to feed my chocoholism and my love of ice cream. With all this in mind, you can see how this planning and couponing is going to be a steep learning curve for me!