Friday, December 3, 2010

Coupons are Great

Read My Feed Weekend is the weekend blog hop for those who like to save money. Be sure to check out this list of blogs, especially the top 3 (host) blogs, they are great.

Money Saving Mode - our story

So back in September I started this blog.  Hubby and I had gotten fed up with our spending habits and with the knowledge that we could be putting a lot more in savings, if we just spent less.  At that point we did two things:
1. We signed up for Dave Ramsey's FPU class at a local church.
2. We started working on a budget

I have to say we were probably the most gung-ho people in the class when it started (and may still be).  We've learned a lot; even having been an avid listener of Dave's show for the last 7+ years, I was amazed at how much I've learned.  We now only have 2 weeks left and thanks to couponing, shopping sales and stocking up, we will be cutting out shopping budget back yet again when we revisit our budget this weekend.

When we initially started out we had a set budget for groceries.  I didn't consider all the stuff I buy at the drug stores to be "groceries" so I was still paying for them with our debit card. After the first month, Paul had me include those with the grocery envelope.  He had even adjusted the budget to give me a little extra in that envelope to cover those things.  I told him it wasn't necessary, we could just leave the grocery budget where it was and I'd also buy the drugstore deals out of that same amount.

This month we'll be cutting that amount by 25%, and hopefully it will be at 50% by the end of the year.  Or original plan was to put 75% of my income into savings and it's looking very much like by the end of the year we'll be able to put my full paycheck into savings.  This is just so amazing to me.  Not only that, it's been really fun.

We first started trying to do a budget several years ago when we first got married and all it led to was stress and anxiety.  It took us a while to really get on the same page with what we wanted and what we were willing to do/ give up to get there.  It was really funny when it happened because we both wanted the same thing and were worried the other one wouldn't be on board.  It's amazine what can happen when as a couple you are both shooting for the same goals.  We've added about $5 to our emergency fund in just over 2 months.  While there's still stress in not knowing what will happen with his job at the end of the year, it's a lot less stressful when we know we have the money in the bank to get by for a while.

Massive Coupon/Sample Giveaway

Don't miss out on my massive Coupon giveaway, ending Monday Dec 6.

My CVS Trip This Week

This was a two trip week to CVS. I thought I'd planned my first trip perfectly to get the $20 of select P&G products, but I missed it by $1.02, so I had to go back.

Transaction 1
4 Pantene @ $3.33 = 13.31
4 Dawn @ .88 = 3.52
2 Puffs @ .97 = $1.94
1 Suave @ .89 = .89 
Local Newspaper @$1.25 ===== Total = 20.91

1 BOGO Pantene - $4.99
2 .50 / Dawn
2 .25 / Dawn
1 .50 Suave
1 $1/2 Pantene
1 B2G1 Puffs - $1.99 (both checker and I read this as BOGO)

Used $10.99 in ECB earned on Black Friday = Total OOP $1.16

Transaction 2
3 Puffs @ .97 =  $2.91
2 Reeses @ $2 = $4

Coupons Used:
1 B2G1 Free Puffs -.97
1 $1/2 Hersheys/Reeses (from the magic coupon machine)

Couldn't find my other ECBs when I rant out on this transaction so paid Total OOP of  $5.49

Total OOP = 6.60     ==== Received $5 ECB   === Total OOP $1.60

Plus the Pantene is on the list for the $20 P&G Mail in Rebate.

Free Christmas Sampler on Amazon

Amazon is giving away a free Christmas music download each day, but there's a lot more free Christmas music on Amazon than just the daily song. Today I found the Nettwerk Holiday Sampler. I have other Nettwerk Holiday albums and they are usually quite good. This one isn't much different with songs from SixPence None The Richer, fun, Aliqua, & Butterfly Boucher. Most of the songs are standards, with Sixpence None the Richer doing "Silent Night" and "Angels We Have Heard on High"; however they are done in and upbeat way that don't leave you with that "Christmas hold music" feeling. fun does a song called "Believe in Me" that I haven't heard before, and Butterfly Boucher does a new one called "Cinnamon and Chocolate". My least favorite song is Aliqua's version "Oh Come Emmanuel", which is bordering on Christmas hold music. Overall the sampler is just ok, but worth a download. It is free afterall.

More Free Christmas Music from Amazon:
25 Days of Free Christmas Music
Acorn Music Free Holiday Sampler
*Christmas TrainFrom Genuine House Rockin' Christmas
I'm Your Santa from the Alligator Records Christmas Collection
Christmas Anthem - Single

More Free Christmas MP3s on

And don't miss the Free Christmas Album on