Thursday, April 21, 2011

Interview With The Couponer: Crunchy Frugalista

Today I'm interviewing Ashley from Crunchy Frugalista about her couponing story.

How long have you been couponing, and what got you started?
I have been couponing for about 3 years. I was in the mortgage industry and my income drastically dropped, so I googled ways to save money and came across the couponing stories and have been couponing ever since.

How big is your family? Do you have any children?
There are 5 in my family. 8 if you count my two dogs and the turtle. I am blessed with 3 great kids ages 12, 9, and 8

If you don't mind sharing, what is your grocery budget? (I'm always amazed at how Mom's can make money stretch).
My budget is probably higher than most couponers. We spend about $300 a month, but that includes household items like papergoods and health and beauty items also.

What has been your favorite coupon deal?
Not sure how to pick just one! I love the free/ cheap Finish Dish Detergent deal. I was able to buy over a year's supply for less than .25/box!

Do you stockpile? If so, where do you keep it?
Having a family of five, I feel the need to stockpile. I actually keep my stockpile in various places. Some of it is in my pantry, my laundry room, in an armoire in my room,and even in my garage.

What made you decide you wanted to start a blog?
I had posted one of my CVS shopping trips on my personal Facebook page, and my friends and family wanted to know how I scored such a great deal. I thought it would be easier to blog about it than type a million comments on Facebook!

If you could give one piece of advice to new coupon users, what would it be?
I always advise newbie couponers to start small and don't let the details overwhelm you. When I first started, I wanted to save hundreds of dollars instantly, then I realized it takes time to learn your stores and how/when to get good prices on products.

How do you organize your coupons?
I just moved to a binder system where I clip my coupons out each week, and separate them by categories. (ie Dairy, meat, hair care, etc) I find it is easier for me to find them that way.

How did you organize your coupons before you went to the binder system? What made you decide to move to the binder system?
Before the binder system, I used small accordian folders, but I found they quickly filled up and I would find coupons all over my house! Then I progressed to the binder with baseball card inserts b/c I don't find Qs all over my house, and I can find them more quickly.

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DSW $10 Bonus

Any holiday is a great excuse to buy gift cards FOR YOURSELF!  It seems like everyone is offering bonus bucks on gift cards right now.  Even DSW is in on the action, offering you a $10 Bonus when you buy a $50 gift card.  Get the Details.

Coupon: Skinny Cow Buy 2 Get 1 Free

Click here for a Skinny Cow coupon good toward 1 Free Cup when you buy 2 cups!

Jimmy Dean Sausage Coupons

I love these pre-cooked sausage crumbles from Jimmy Dean and this is a great coupon!  There is a $1/1 coupon available for the pre-cooked sausage, and a $.55/1 coupon for the sausage roll.

That Expired a Month Ago! Is It Still Good?

This is a common occurrence in our house, even before we started stock-piling. There are just some things we don't eat often (mayo for example) that I almost wish we could buy it in sample sizes.

Happy Money Saver just posted a really great article on Expired Foods and just how long past an expiration date things are still good.  If you are stockpiling, this is a great reference list you'll definitely want to bookmark (and maybe even print a copy to keep with your stockpile).

Read the Post Here.

New SnackPicks Coupons

Snackpicks has some new coupons available for Kellogg's & Keebler products, click here to login (or register) and print the coupons.

Free Book from Read It Forward - Floor of Heaven

by Howard Blum
It is the last decade of the 19th century. The Wild West has been tamed and its fierce, independent and often violent larger-than-life figures—gun-toting wanderers, trappers, prospectors, Indian fighters, cowboys, and lawmen—are now victims of their own success. They are heroes who've outlived their usefulness. But then gold is discovered in Alaska and the adjacent Canadian Klondike and a new frontier suddenly looms.

Click Here to Enter for a Free Copy

Coupon: $1 Off True Lemon

Click here to get $1 Off True Lemon products.

New Coupons - Newman's Own , 8th Continent & More

There's a bunch of new grocery coupons on - check 'em out!

General Mills Sampler Pack and Coupons

UPDATE - The St Paul one is sold out, but theres one for SF, CA that isn't sold out yet! Here's the link!

There's an awesome sampler pack from General Mills on Groupon for $20 and that includes shipping.  . It is listed on St. Paul but since it is online, anyone can grab it!  This sampler pack includes

  • 12.8 ounce Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal
  • 13 ounce Reese's Puffs cereal
  • 12 ounce Kix cereal
  • 12.8 ounce Cascadian Farms Organic cereal
  • 5.8 ounce Fiber One 90-Calorie Chewy Bars
  • 5.8 ounce Hamburger Helper
  • 11 ounce Green Giant Corn Niblets
  • 9.5 ounce Old El Paso Tortilla Stuffers
  • 5 ounce Fruit Roll-Ups
  • 10.5 ounce Chex Mix Muddy Buddies snack mix
  • 17.5 ounce Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie mix
  • 13.7 ounce Wanchai Ferry Orange Chicken dinner kit
Plus a General Mills Coupon book. 

This is a great deal, better grab it before its gone!