Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Old Navy gift cards 20% off until Christmas Eve

Just an update on gift card deals, if you buy gift cards in store, you can get 20% up to $300. You can use the cards at their partner stores (Gap, Banana Republic, etc.).


Friday, December 18, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Just want to say Happy Holidays to everyone - I'm "off" for a bit in terms of buying groceries and stuff since I am traveling over the holidays. But if I get any info about after Christmas sales and things I'll try to pass it on. In the meantime, check my links to the left for updates from Sue Stock or Faye Prosser who should keep posting (it is their job after all!) and other sites with great coupons and deals!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Whole Foods launches Online Coupons!

Do you love organic food from Whole Foods but cringe at the prices? This may help. Whole Foods now has printable online coupons. These are "in-store" coupons so I would assume that if you have a manufacturer's coupon for something too, you could use both. Enjoy!


Ebates - Cash Back from Major Stores!!!

Thanks very much to my friend, E. who alerted me to this very cool site! http://www.ebates.com
I have yet to use it, but basically, if you purchase products from all kinds of major stores through this site, they will send you a cash rebate in the mail for a percentage of the purchase price. You can also find and use coupon codes here in addition to your cash back rebate. Some stores that are included are:

Barnes and Noble
Circuit City
Best Buy
The Disney Store
The Children's Place
and many more!

The site is http://www.ebates.com

Monday, December 14, 2009

W00t! - amazing limited time/limited quantity deals

My husband, D, is into these websites that have amazing limited time (like only hours to buy)/limited quantity offers on things - the sites are called Woot! sites. For those who don't speak nerd, W00t! is a nerdy, computer geek, Internet slang exclamation for "awesome!" "sweet!" or "this is quite a good thing, indeed!" - the sites are:

http://woot.com/ - this site is mainly for electronic gadgets, and sometimes pretty cool ones!

http://wine.woot.com/ - D's personal favorite - we frequently get cases of really great wine that would retail for $16 or more per bottle for $10 a bottle or less. Your state must allow shipping of alcohol from out of state though so check into it.

http://kids.woot.com/ - this is great for all you parents out there looking for great x-mas gifts on the cheap - $5 shipping on all Woots

http://deals.woot.com/ - this one is my most recently discovered site - it is a community site so people post their best deals they've found on here and critique the deals too (e.g., tell you whether it's really a good price, where you could get it cheaper, or if it's a good product)

Just try to keep in mind: Don't "Over-Woot" it. That "bacon-flavored" salt may seem like a tasty deal for only $2 at the time, but there will be another great deal tomorrow you may not be able to pass up. Might be a good idea to keep a W00t budget (or at least a monthly wine budget). And yes, the bacon-flavored salt was a real thing, and no, it's not as tasty as it sounds.

Gift Cards (great Melting Pot deal and others!)

I know everyone is avoiding gift cards this year because it seems those are the only things you can't get a deal on. Well, there are at least a few deals I'm aware of out there, probably more than what I'm posting here. I'll add more as I get them.

Best deal: The Melting Pot - buy $100 in gift cards, get 4 $25 bonus gift cards FREE - check the restrictions on this though. They're more like coupons. Each bonus gift card can only be used during a certain quarter of the year (2010) and can only be used on a 4 course dinner. Still, it's the best coupon out there for the Melting Pot!

OSI Restaurant partners (Carrabas, Bonefish, and Outback) have a buy $100 in gift cards, get a $20 bonus gift card (bonus card good Jan 1st through Feb. 10th, 2010)

Some more deals at: http://dealnews.com/features/Gift-Card-Deals-A-List-of-Gift-Card-Discounts-Bonuses/327253.html

Plus always check out Restaurants.com - there are always coupon codes for 80 and 90% off these gift cards (like get a $25 gift card for $2) - You can get the coupon codes on Couponmom.com. The number of restaurants participating is limited and there are some restrictions. They restock these every month, so it's probably best to check it out at the beginning of the month before the good ones are all gone.

WRAL Smart Shopper Website

For all you locals (and probably for not so locals as well) - The WRAL Smart Shopper has a website up now that will have a lot of great deals on it. I heard this woman on the radio this morning - apparently she spends $65 dollars per week on groceries for her family of 4, getting $150 to $200 worth of stuff. Wow! I wonder if she counts all the toiletries and household items like paper towels, napkins, etc. in that number?


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Harris Teeter this week 12/12/09

Hi everyone - didn't get to shopping until today. There were some great stock up items this week:

Harris Teeter Natural Ice Cream - Buy 2 get 3 free
Harris Teeter prepackaged cold cuts - Buy 2 get 3 free
Milk Bone Treats - BOGO

Chex cereal - (orig $3.39 each) Buy three and get them for $2.50 each. Printable coupons for $1 off 2boxes are available making them $6.50 for 3 boxes (about $2.16 each) - great for chex mix!

Martha White muffin mix (orig. $1.15) sale $1 - printable coupon for 55 cents off two - final price = 90 cents for two, or 45 cents each.

Blistex - orig. 99 cents - BOGO (one rings at half price or 50 cents) - cpn for 25cents off in 11/15 smart source doubles to 50 cents - final price = FREE!

Glade Candles (orig. 3.79) - BOGO - cpn for $1.50 off two candles in 11/1 and 12/6 smart sources - final price = $2.29 for two

Farm Rich Mozzerella Cheese Sticks - (orig. 3.99) - sale price $3 - cpn in 12/06 smart source for 75 cents off , doubles to $1.50 - final price = $1.50

Tony's Crispy Crust Pizza - (orig. 1.49) - sale $1 - printable coupon for 50 cents off two, doubles to $1, final price = 50 cents each

Green Giant frozen veggies (orig. 1.89) - sale 99 cents - evic 68 cents (limit 1) - coupon in 11/15 smart source for 60 cents off 3 doubles to $1.20 - final price = 49 cents each

Pillsbury Crescent rolls (orig. 2.09) - sale $1.67 (3 for $5) - many many coupons out for these - printable ones are 50 cents off two - doubles to $1 off - final price = $1.17 each

Kraft singles (orig. 2.29) - sale price 1.50 - coupon for 50 cents off in 12/06 smart source - doubles to $1 - final price = 50 cents

Kraft Cheddar sticks (orig. 3.09) sale price $2.50 - coupon for $1 off two in 11/22 smart source - final price = $2 each.

E-vic deals:
HT green beans, corn or peas (canned) - orig. 89 cent - sale price = BOGO- e-vic price = 33 cents (limit 1)

Flat Iron or Flank steak - $3 off - I got a one pound one for about $6, which after the evic was $3.

I will be taking a few weeks off from grocery shopping since I'll be visiting family - see you (and all the bargains) in the New Year!


Friday, December 4, 2009

Harris Teeter this week 12/4/09

There are some really great meat deals this week, so make room in your freezer and if your store is out, be sure to get a rain check! Remember that for most of the BOGO deals, the individual items will ring up as half price if you only buy one, so you don't actually have to buy two. According to my receipt I saved $106.22 this week (woo hoo!) and I finally qualified for 2 $25 the gift cards, but I have yet to claim them.

So here are some of the deals:

  • Swiss Miss Hot Cocoa - Orig. 1.95. Sale price $1.50. Coupon in 11/15 Smart Source for 50 cents off 2 (doubles to $1 off) - Final price = $1 per box for 2.
  • Chex Mix Sweet n Salty and chocolate flavors - Orig. 3.19. Sale price $2. Printable coupon for 50 cents off doubles to $1 - final price = $1.
  • Progresso Broth - Orig. 2.69, sale price $2.24. Printable coupon for 50 cents off doubles to $1 - final price = $1.24.
  • White House Apple Sauce - Orig. $2, sale BOGO ($1) - Coupon in 8/16 Smart Source 75 cents off 2 doubles to $1.50. Final price = 50 cents for 2 or 25 cents each.
  • Skippy Peanut Butter Natural 15 oz - Orig. 2.99, Sale price 1.49, coupon in 11/15 Red Plum for 60 cents off doubles to $1.20 - final price = 29 cents
  • Scotch Brite sponges (6ct.) - Orig. 11.98, Sale BOGO ($5.99) - no coupon, but a decent deal
  • Loreal Preference Hair color - Orig. 9.99, sale price 6.99- coupon in 11/1 for $2 off - final price = 4.99
  • Dannon Yogurt - 55 cents each - coupon in 11/15 Smart Source for $1 off for 10. making them 45 cents each.
  • Oscar Meyer Bacon - Orig. 5.49 BOGO (2.75) - coupon 11/15 Smart Source for 75 cents off ($1.50) - final price = 1.25
  • Johnsonville Italian sausage - Orig. 5.29 - sale price 3.99 - coupon in 11/8 smart source for 55cents off doubles to $1.10 - final price = 2.89.
  • HT Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast - Buy 1 get 2 FREE (limit 6)
  • HT Chuck Roast - BOGO (I got a rain check for these because they were out - great for beef stew)
  • Organic Baby Greens - BOGO
  • Cripps Pink Lady - BOGO
  • Edy's Ice Cream - 2 for $6
  • Mayfield Ice Cream - BOGO
  • HT Milk - Orig. 3.49, sale price 2.47

E-Vic deals - I'm not sure if some of these E-Vic deals are special for individual people, but these are the ones I got today - typically there's a limit of 1 on these:

  • Kellogg's individual Cereal cups - Orig. $1.25, E-Vic sale price 50 cents
  • Aquarius Spring water - Orig. 7.79 - E-Vic sale price = $1.99
  • HT Instant Rice - Orig. $1.89, E-Vic sale price = FREE!
  • Herbal Essences Shampoo - Orig. 3.99 - sale price = $2.50 - E-Vic deal is buy shampoo or conditioner and get free styler (I got the mousse, a 3.99 value)
Please feel free to add any other deals you find! I hear Kroger has some great 10 for $10 deals with good coupon match ups!

- Li

Monday, November 30, 2009

A few new coupons

Here's a neat site for target coupons: Target Coupon Generator

Here's a 30% off coupon for a variety of stores including Nine West, Easy Spirit, and Jones New York

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Christmas Time is Here

Yesterday, we purchased a "faux" Christmas tree 20% off at Home Depot. I say "faux" because that sounds fancier than "fake tree" or "plastic tree with plastic berries on it." We finally decided, after years of finding dry pine needles in the most random of places in March and enjoying the beauty of our tree while struggling to breathe and puffing our inhalers, that we needed a Faux Fabulous Fraser Fir. D was dismayed about not having that "real tree smell" in the house, but I assured him that there are also cans of "faux" tree smell that can be purchased that give (almost) the same effect. Plus, they're aerosol cans so they are almost as bad for the environment as cutting down millions of real trees - thus, the spirit of commercialized Christmas will remain intact.

In all seriousness though, Christmas is my favorite time of year. K is finally old enough (19 months) to be interested in Christmas, so I'm pretty excited to get things started. Santa is "dee da" to her and "snowman" is "awden." She can say "no" for snow and she can say man, but the combination is a toughie. It makes deciphering what she wants more fun though, like the other day when she repeatedly yelled "peacock!" at me for 10 minutes before I realized she was saying mailbox. She's napping at the moment, but we'll be trimming the "tee" (tree) with "omets" (ornaments) when she wakes up.

I hope you all enjoy being with your families this holiday season, whether your "tee" be real or faux fabulous. Since Christmas presents are all taken care of now, next up in holiday deals - Christmas cards and portraits. Stay tuned!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Wow-coupons.com - Awesome!

New link - this site rocks - really well organized, easy to find things you're looking for!


Super Saturday and Cyber Monday

Just in case I didn't get enough of a shopping fix yesterday, I went out again this morning for Saturday doorbusters. I was sad that today was the only day this weekend I didn't get a newspaper - Saturday sale papers were delivered yesterday though. So, here's where I went and what I got.

JC Penney - amazing coat sale. I replaced my old and ratty grey peacoat with a new and fabulous St. John's bay cashmere-blend peacoat. Originally $200, got it for $49 during the doorbusters. I also got a quilted brown jacket originally $120 for $34. Lots of shirts and PJs were also at least half off.

Stride Rite - they're having their BOGO half off sale. K loves her pink sneakers from there and wears them every single day. So I got them in the next two sizes - Originally $47 a pair, on sale for $24.99, so I got both pairs for $40 plus a free "snack trap" cup.

Gymboree - The clothes are expensive here so normally I don't shop here unless I can get something very cheap in the sale section. However, today they were having 25% off sales on already discounted items - and these weren't just the clearance items, some were from the gingerbread line which is new this season. Plus I had 20% off coupon I got in the mail. I essentially got $147 of clothes for K for a little over $50 including two fancy jumpers, two body suit turtlenecks, two pairs of tights, a cute corduroy shirt, and a hat. Gymboree gives out free gift boxes, which seems rare nowadays - often stores make you pay for them! I also got $25 worth of "gymbucks" to use at a future date.

I was hoping to blog about this earlier this morning so you guys could go take advantage, but keep in mind that many stores are carrying sales through tomorrow.

Of course Monday is Cyber Monday, so many online retailers will have sales and free shipping deals. Amazon.com is having Black Friday week all week, so you can jump on there right now and check out some of their "lightning" deals - these are limited quantity items offered up every half hour or so. You can look ahead to see what is coming up and when so you can pounce on a deeply discounted item when it comes time. Remember to look for coupon codes at Retailmenot and freeshipping.org

Just a tip - for time limited online deals, it's a good idea to make sure you already have an account set up with the website in advance. It will be easier to get through the checkout that way, especially if you have a credit card already on file.

Friday, November 27, 2009

The Aftermath - Black Friday

I have a confession to make. I was unable to roll out of bed early enough to hit the major doorbuster sales. :-( However, I did get to Kohl's a little before 8am and got most of my Christmas shopping done there. While I was pushing my extremely overloaded and tiny cart around the beauty section (a cart that I waited 20 minutes for while holding a very big heavy box), a nice woman gave me a 15% off everything coupon that she wasn't using which got me an additional $76 off my order. All told, my receipt says I saved $830 and I got an additional $80 in "Kohl's Cash" to spend next week. Talk about some great deals! I also spent about $75 and saved $120 at Old Navy, and bought a bunch of dog toys at Petsmart for half off. FYI, Toys R Us at 1:30pm looked like a tornado had blown through and none of the sale items were left. Not that I wasn't expecting it, but if I had been planning to buy a lot of toys it probably would've been worth standing in line for the midnight opening.

How bad did it get today? I interviewed a few people about their experiences for lack of better things to do while standing in line with my shopping buddy, E. The checkout women at Old Navy, Brittany and Diamond, had been there since 4am (Old Navy opened at 3am). They were told that the lines started around 1am, and when they got there, the lines were already all the way to the back of the store. People were pushing and shoving, and one kid threw up in line. Why people would wake their child up to be at Old Navy at 3am, none of us could figure out. Diamond was also wondering why people were there that early when the same sales were being offered all weekend (no real early bird specials other than the Lego Rockband game to the first 50 customers). Another reporter was the woman who was waiting for my cart as I was checking out at Kohl's - she had been at Walmart at 5am when the early bird deals started. She ended up waiting in line for 2 and a half hours to check out. She got a really cheap HDTV though, so she was stoked.

In the end, I was glad I hadn't gotten up mega early. I got the things I wanted anyway, and a few extras I hadn't planned on. I'm not sure the $3 toaster at Target would have been worth it to me. I've learned my lesson for next year though:

  • definitely shop with at least one friend - standing in line for a long time is much more fun that way.
  • Do NOT drink coffee before shopping. Having to pee while standing with a gigantic cart full of stuff is not fun unless you have someone to keep a close eye on it for you. Which brings me to...
  • Keep a close eye on your cart. I got the last two digital picture frames and you wouldn't believe how many sneaky folks were ready to pounce on them if I turned my back for a second.
  • Be polite when attempting to cross through the check out line to get to another part of the store. If people think you are cutting in line, they might take you DOWN.
  • Bring coupons. I didn't know there was a Kohl's 15% off coupon out there, which was surprising to me since I usually know where all the coupons are. Kohl's is the one store for which I'm not actually on their mailing list for special deals (ok, there's probably more than one store). I now have a separate gmail account just for stores and special deals. Playskool also has a bunch of printable toy coupons on coupons.com, and there's one for $5 off a Star Wars toy floating around out there. Keep in mind, some items might be excluded from your store coupon use, but the manufacturer's ones should work.
  • Use hand sanitizer. Nuf said. Ew.
  • I might consider bringing my own stroller next year to use as a cart even though I didn't bring my kid. It was a pain waiting for a cart.
  • Remember where you parked. People will stalk you for your spot even if it's out in East Jibib, so walking up and down the parking aisles looking for your car can be annoying when 3 SUVs are following you at a creeping pace.
  • Go with a budget in mind and give yourself a few dollars leeway. It is so easy to get carried away and want to buy things for yourself! I'm not saying you shouldn't, but remember the purpose here is to save money. If you blow your budget, you may have some cute stuff, but you won't be saving as much as you'd like.
  • Keep the ENDING times in mind - you may not get there at 4am, but keep in mind that certain doorbuster/early bird prices are only good until noon or 1pm. After that, the deals may be gone.
  • You can really only go to two to four different stores during the early bird time period, so choose wisely. Remember that you will spend time finding your item, fighting tooth and nail for it, and then waiting in line while attempting to scare off any cutters (no backsies!) - the waiting in line and driving between stores alone could take you an hour.
  • Bring water and a snack and keep it in the car. You'll need it!
  • Plan your driving route carefully - 15-501 was a mess today at 1pm. Take back roads if you think it will be crowded.
  • Have fun! When else do you get to go on this kind of shopping spree and be home in time for leftover turkey and stuffing?
If you have a special deal you got this weekend, please post it here!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Plans for Black Friday Shopping

I was giddy running down the driveway in my jammy pants this morning to get the paper with all the sales in it. Many of the sales I had seen online already, but it was cool to physically sort through the sale papers and pick which ones to keep and which ones to let K shred.

I think my top contenders for shopping tomorrow are Kohls (opening at 4am), Target (opening at 5am), Old Navy (opens at 3am??? I will probably not make that one until later in the morning), and Babies R Us, though I'm not sure what time they're opening. I know Toys R Us opens at midnight (seriously??). I won't post what I'm buying right now because people I'm buying for read this blog! But hopefully it will warm your holiday heart that so much time, effort, willpower, and probably sheer physical force went into purchasing your gifts!

I have a potential partner for tomorrow, though when she hears what time I'm going out, she may decline the invitation. Anyone else in this area willing to brave it with me? Just let me know.

Store opening times for Friday:

  • Midnight - Toys R US
  • 3am - Old Navy
  • 4am - Kohls, hh gregg, JC Penney, Sears, and Belk
  • 5am - Macy's, Best Buy (be warned, they will be handing out tickets to the people in line before the store opens so they are the first to buy things), AC Moore, Home Depot, Target, Sam's Club, Dick's, CompUSA (5am) Walmart will also start deals at 5am
  • 530am - Radio Shack
  • 6am - all the local malls , Lowe's home improvement, Michaels, Office depot, Staples, Game Stop, Wolf Camera, Bed Bath and Beyond, JoAnn Fabrics
  • 7am - BJs, Kmart, Nordstrom, Office Max, Ulta beauty, World Market (free stuff to early folks)
  • 8am - Dillards, Saks, Home Goods, TJ Maxx, Tuesday Morning (the store - it's by Ashley Furniture and Toys R Us),
  • 9am - Costco
If you are going here are some tips I've found from various sources:
  • Have a list of what you want to buy and where you want to buy it. Prioritize by most important items and most likely to sell out items. Plan which store you will go to first based on your list.
  • Be okay with not getting an item - lots of stores will have limited quantities of the most popular or deeply discounted items.
  • Go with a team or at least a friend. There a limits on the number of certain items you can buy per person, so if you need two of a certain digital camera and the store will only let you purchase one per person, your buddy can get your second one. You can also split up to get the most desired items once you hit the store. Have a charged cell phone handy.
  • Just park. Don't drive around looking for a great spot. Wear sneakers and suck it up. This is retail war, people.
  • Keep your gift receipts and regular receipts in a special envelope so you don't lose them. Don't leave them in the bag in case things get stolen. Keep your car locked and your purchases stashed away for the same reason.
  • Don't wear bulky stuff or bring bulky purses, just bring your wallet in a zip pocket in your coat or a purse you can strap across your body. Despite what some random emails you might get from people say, you can not get decapitated by your purse strap if someone tries to snag it. You may get dragged a little, but I think we all expect that on Black Friday. http://www.snopes.com/horrors/robbery/purse.asp
  • Bring a big bag to store all your little bags
  • Bring your own coffee for waiting in outside lines and a few granola bars - you probably won't have time to stop to eat stuff. After you've finished your shopping, you can always stop at Starbucks or for some lunch to tell war stories and enjoy the spoils.
  • Have a sense of humor and be patient and forgiving - as Sue Stock said, the gift of giving does not come with bail money - don't be that woman on the evening news attacking someone over a sweater. This is Thanksgiving, not Slapsgiving.
Anyway, happy turkey and happy shopping. I'll be reporting from the trenches.

- Li

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Black Friday Coupons

I'm exhausted tonight, but at some point in the next 24 hours I will need to plan my Black Friday shopping plan. Retail me not has some special Black Friday coupons and deals on their site:



Saturday, November 21, 2009

Harris Teeter this week 11/21/09

This week I was dismayed when I saw my total amount ($168.94), even though I knew I was stocking up on a bunch of things I don't usually buy week to week like tissues and baby wipes. But then I was told that I saved $103. 48 and the manager had to come over and key in some override code since I saved over $100. The checkout lady (who was much like Kristen Wigg's Target Lady on SNL with her advice and questions) said it was the highest she had seen yet today. After that I felt much better!

Anyway, here are some of the best deals from today:

  • Tropicana 50 -orig. 3.49 this is the 50% less sugar variety so I think it has some kind of stevia in it - anyway it's the eVIC special this week so eVIC price is $1.77 (pay no attention to the sign next to it) - the coupon was in 11/15 Red Plum for $1 off - now I didn't realize it was for $1 off 2 until I went to check out, but they gave it to me anyway, making my OJ 77 cents. Otherwise you'll have to buy 2 - you can only get 1 at the eVIC price, the other is at the VIC price of $2.50. Also - keep in mind that occasionally they'll let you use a coupon that is for a specific variety of a brand item for another variety. I didn't try this with this coupon, but you could :-) If so, let me know how it goes.
  • Caribou Coffee (D is a coffee snob and this is the only coffee sold in the grocery store he'll drink. Snooty McSnooterson - love you hun!) Anyway - orig. 9.99 per 12oz bag. sale price 6.99. coupons for $2 off in 9/13 and 11/1 Red Plum - final price $4.99 per bag. Or there are some online printables (check couponmom.com) for $1 off.
  • Kix cereal - orig. 2.99, sale price $2 - printable coupon for 75 cents off doubles to 1.50 making final price 50 cents
  • Honey Nut Cheerios - orig. 3.59, sale price $2 - printable coupon for 55 cents off doubles to $1.10 - final price 90 cents - or you could use the 50 cents off two general mills cereals in the 11/8 smart source and get two boxes at $1.50 each
  • Green Giant Specialty canned corn (like southwest style or chipotle) - orig. 1.45 per can, sale price is $1 - coupon for 40 cents off two in 11/15 general mills insert doubles to 80 cents - final price for 2 is $1.20 (or 60 cents each)
  • Frenchs Taste Topper Onions (you know, on top of the green bean casserole?) - orig. 3.99 per can, sale price 3.49 - coupon in 11/8 smart source for 50 cents off doubles to $1 - final price 2.49
  • Triscuits - orig. 3.55 per box - BOGO makes them $1.77 each (if you buy one, it rings up as half price). Coupon in 11/8 smart source for $1 off Nabisco crackers makes them 77 cents. Or there are a couple printables out there for 50 cents off two, doubles to $1, make them $1.28 per box for 2
  • Scotties facial tissues - orig. $1.69 per box, BOGO makes them 84 cents each plus there are multiple coupons - dates are 10/25, 8/9, 9/13, 11/15 all in the Red Plum circulars for 50 cents off 3 - doubles to $1 off 3. The math is a bit tricky, but overall it comes out to final price of 51 cents per box for the reg or aloe varieties.
  • Ziploc containters - orig. 3.49, BOGO makes price for one 1.75 - coupon in 11/15 smart source is for 1.50 off two. Final price for 2 $1.99 or $1 each pack
  • Pillsbury Crescent rolls - orig. 2.09, sale price 1.67 - there a bunch of online printables for these but also multiple coupons from the smart source circulars on the following dates: 9/13, 10/4, 10/25, 11/8 and 11/15 for either 50 cents off two or 25 cents off 1. The final price with doubling of coupon is 2.34 for 2 or 1.17 each - these are nice to have around to add last minute to a meal
  • Plumrose bacon - orig. 3.99 pkg., sale price 2.47 - there have been some $1 off fresh pork coupons hanging out in the meat section lately and I've snagged a bunch, so I used these for two packages today. final price was $1.47 each. They were out of the pork coupons today though and so am I so that may be the last of my cheap pork deals.
Some non-coupon deals
  • Coca Cola fridge packs are BOGO (usually 5.99 each so about $3 each now)
  • Green Giant Veggies are BOGO ( Usually 75 cents each so they are about 37 cents each right now)
  • HT black beans 67 cents
  • Ripe mangos orig. 1.59 each - sale makes them 75 cents each
  • bunch broccoli (K's favorite!) - only 99 cents
  • Thomas's bages BOGO orig 3.99 so $1.99 each
  • Top Care brand allergy meds are typically 22.99 for 45 ct. on sale 14.49
There are other deals to be had, but this is what I've got for you today. Keep in mind that the holidays are coming up so if you're entertaining or bringing food to something, it's a good idea to stock up on the things you'll need now.

Also, my HT on University in Durham had Eggo Waffles. They don't usually, there's been a sign up that they've been out for a while, so I bought some even though they were not on sale (gasp!) for the nostalgia of it. I bought the family pack though which is a little cheaper due to buying in bulk. If you haven't heard, there have been production issues with Eggos and they may not be back on the shelves for a very long time.

I'm planning to check out Target this week too - I have target coupons that came in the mail and some manufacturer's coupons to match up with it, like $1 off Ore Ida Mashed Potatoes target coupon AND $1 off the same product manufacturer's coupon. You CAN double these up! There are some others as well, but I'll let you know when I use them.

I'll be posting again regarding my Black Friday plans as I make them. It's less than a week away now! Time to get on http://blackfriday.gottadeal.com/ to create a plan of attack!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Free Shipping Day - December 17th

I thought this was a cool offer - buy from these retailers online on December 17th, you get free shipping and delivery by Christmas Eve - it doesn't look like they are done adding retailers yet either, so there could be even more by next month! Keep in mind though that a lot of retailers are giving free shipping to orders over a certain amount anyway, but if you like to procrastinate, this could be helpful.


Don't toss that junk mail!

Tis the season to get junk mail. But not so junky junk mail, it turns out. A lot of the mail we've gotten the last few days (flyers, catalogs, etc.) have included some pretty great coupons! Barnes and Noble with various % off online coupons and free shipping on orders $10 or more, 20% off Ann Taylor Loft, and even a Brookstone catalog with some high value coupons on the back. So make recycling your New Year's resolution but keep the junk until you figure out which deals you'd like to hang on to!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Harris Teeter this week - sorry so late!

I didn't go food shopping this weekend . I know, I know. I sent D and K to do it for me while I had lunch and went to a movie ($1.50 theatre) with my good friend. By the way, the Time Traveler's Wife was really good. If you liked the book, they were true to it.

D did a good job! I gave him a list and stack of coupons, and he saved $49 dollars. The Turkey Sale is over, but there are still a few good deals this week:

Bertolli tomato sauce (our favorite) - orig. 2.89 - BOGO makes it $1.44 - coupon from this weekend was 60 cents which doubles to $1.20. - final price 24 cents. Can't beat that!

Wolfgang Puck Organic soups - orig. $2.99 per can - sale price $2 - coupons for $1 off in - final price $1 per can.

Comtrex cold and cough - orig. $5.69 - BOGO makes the price $2.84 coupon is for $3 off in - final price FREE!

Oscar Meyer Bacon - orig. 5.49 - BOGO makes the price $2.85 - coupon from this weekend is 75 cents off which doubles to $1.50 - final price $1. 35

Thomas's English Muffins - no coupon here, but this is the lowest price you'll see on these at HT. Usual sale is 2 for $5, but right now it's a BOGO making them $2 each. I freeze the light ones - then I microwave them for 20 seconds and pop them in the toaster. 8 grams of fiber per muffin and only 80 calories! Great with a little peanut butter.

HT Bluberry waffles are on sale for $1.37 (normally $2. 39)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Entertainment Book for 2010 is on sale

If you had the Entertainment book from 2009, you may (or may not) know that most of the restaurant coupons expired 11/1. A bunch of the retail ones are still good until the end of the year though. The new 2010 book is out and on sale, $7 off today only (supposedly) and free shipping!

Entertainment Book 2010

Newly found coupon portal! Lots of coupons for a whole bunch of retailers

I found this website when searching for printable target coupons. There are links to so many different retailers on here! I will add a link to the left.

Printable coupons at thokalath.com

Old Navy/GAP/Banana Republic savings this weekend

There's a 30% off friends and family coupon out for this weekend for the Gap chain stores (including Old Navy and Banana Republic). Print it and use it as much as often as you like until the end of the day tomorrow. Combined with Old Navy's sales, you can get some great prices on clothes for lots of people.

Old Navy/GAP/Banana Republic coupon - expires 11/15

Friday, November 13, 2009

Rebates: Are they worth it? Balancing Savings and Convenience

One savings strategy I have yet to try are rebates. Of course it makes sense to get a rebate on high price items if they are offered. But what about the lower price ones like at drugstores?

According to Sue Stock, at Rite Aid this week you can get an Oral B Crossaction toothbrush for free with rebate (usually $2.99). If you use the Nov. 1 coupon for $1 off, you can make a buck on it. Sounds great - free money right? I don't mind getting paid to shop. But then I think, is the time it would take to find the coupon and mail in the rebate worth making $1? $1 an hour is a pretty poor pay rate for any job. Even if we take into account the $2.99 we save on the toothbrush, $4 an hour isn't great either.... If we take it a little further though and say it would only take 30 minutes to do this since you have the coupon clipped already and will stop by Rite Aid on the way home from work, it might not be an hour. More like 30 minutes. Then you're being paid $4 for a half hour. At least that's crossing the minimum wage line.

So my point is this, saving money does take time and planning. And the more you do it, the easier and faster it is. I don't spend several hours planning my grocery shopping anymore because with practice I've increased my ability to plan faster and shop faster. Since I work full time, I mostly plan in the evening when K is in bed and D is watching football. Maybe if I included the drugstores and other stores in my planning I would save more, but would it be worth the time? This is why I'm pretty much a one store shopper when it comes to groceries - I may be able to save more on some items by shopping at multiple grocery stores in the same week.

Please feel free to comment here about savings vs. convenience. I know I have cut about 40% (sometimes more) of my grocery budget, which is worth the time to me. Would taking it to the next level save me more and be worth the time in the long run?

"How to Buy Things for Free" at drugstores, clothing stores, and more

Ok, I know I've already posted several things today (TGIF!) but this one I thought was really good. Another one from Wallet Pop (a site I link to on this blog, see links on the left).

How to Buy Things for Free - Wallet Pop

It goes through savings at many other types of stores other than supermarkets like drugstores, clothing stores, superstores like Target and Walmart, and supercenters like BJs, Costco, and Sam's Club. I have yet to really venture into these arenas except for getting my $25 gift card with my new prescriptions at CVS. But it definitely seems like you can get some great deals. Old Navy is definitely putting some great ones out there this season. Many of the online stores are going to start doing more free shipping deals as the holidays approach as well.

Traveling Abroad? Some new low prices - wish I were in London!

I came across this article revealing that JetBlue is teaming up with Luftansa to provide some low cost international fares. There's a one-week sale going on including one way tix from JFK to Barcelona for $250 and Boston to London for $299. This is not the cheapest I've ever seen, but probably the cheapest in the past 5 years. I have no idea about baggage charges, food charges, or other fees though. If you're thinking Europe for the holidays or this spring though, you may find some good deals! Not sure if I can clip enough coupons to make up for the trip right now though, so if you go, take lots of great pictures for me!

Jet Blue and Luftansa Team Up

Even More Black Friday Deals....

I'm going to need to spend a few hours planning the Christmas shopping spree I think - here's yet another link for your research:

Wallet Pop - Black Friday Deals

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Some more potential Black Friday (or earlier) deals

Check these out!

Some good technology deals may be coming your way. As I find things, I'll let you know about them!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Thanksgiving and Black Friday 2009

Walmart is starting with "pre-Black Friday" deals including a $20 turkey dinner that could be a fabulous deal for thanksgiving!


but here is a great website to get the heads up about actual Black Friday deals this year. Are you willing to get up at 4am? I'm thinking of doing it this year - ok, maybe 5am...or later...


Saturday, November 7, 2009

More triples fun!

Today, spent $28, saved $47.98.

Pomeian Vinegar - orig. $2.75 (sale $2) - printable 50 cent coupon - final price 50 cents

Burleson Honey (small) - orig. 3.99 (sale 3.29) - printable 55 cent coupon - final price $1.64

Welch's grape juice - orig. 4.79 (sale 3.99) - 75 cent coupons in the 8/16 and 9/13 smart source - final price $1.74

Colgate 360 toothbrush - orig. 3.99 (sale 2.50) - 75 cent coupon in 10-25 smart source- final price 25 cents

Bridgeford bread dough - orig. 2.99 (sale 2.50) - 55 cent printable coupon - final price 85 cents - you can use this on for Monkeybread too but the price is higher

Born Free eggs - orig. 2.99 (sale 2.50) - 35 cent coupon in 10/4 red plum - final price $1.45

Swanson canned chicken - orig. 2.35 per can (sale $1.79) - 75 cents off 2 cans in 9/13 and 10/25 smart source - final price $1.33 for 2 (66 cents each can)

Cascade 75 oz dishwaster detergent - orig. 5.49 (sale 3.99) - 50 cents off coupon in 11/1 P&G Brand Saver - final price $2.49

Ziploc sandwich bags - orig. 2.65 - 40 cent off coupon in 9/13 smart source - final price $1.45

Mazola cooking spray - on sale 2 for $3 - 50 cent coupon 10/4 smart source - final price FREE! - I didn't actually get this deal because they were out of the item.

Not a triple, but Dannon Yogurt is 10 for $4 - there was a $1 off 10 coupon in 9/13 and 10/25 smart source - final price, 10 for $3 or 30 cents each

I also had some coupons from previous HT visits that turned out to be good deals - You won't have these though unless you bought these items previously and they printed out at check out.

Dole fruit cups - orig. 2.65 (sale $2) - 75 cents off 2 coupon - final price $1.75 for 2 (about 87 cents each)

Special K Crackers - orig. 3.57 (sale 3.19) 75 cents off coupon (there may have been a printable one of these too) - final price 94 cents

A woman in the store today said she thinks they jacked up the prices during triples because Walmart has cheaper condensed soup (something like 64 cents usually and at HT it was 2 for $3 (unless you got the BOGO ones, then 75 cents) - I said that it is probably true that Walmart has cheaper base prices (heck, Kroger does, by a few cents, for most items, and some things I buy like Yo Baby yogurt and Tyson Chicken Nuggets are cheaper at Target) - but they don't typically double coupons up to 99 cents and they don't do triples or super doubles. So if you're looking for an unusual deal, HT is the place. If you're looking to shop on a normal week with no coupons, it IS probably better to go to another store. I thought the HT base prices this week looked pretty typical to me, don't know what you all think.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Starbucks Rewards Program

Here's the link:


If you're a regular, you can actually get some good perks. If not, at least you get a free drink on your birthday!

Also, last month I got a special Target coupon at checkout for BOGO on lattes at their in store Starbucks. My mother-in-law and I used it to get Pumpkin Spice ones...mmmm. They also had some cards for free iTunes downloads (no one I'd heard of, but who doesn't like new music?) - be on the lookout for special holiday deals and post them here!

This Week's Food Deals - Harris Teeter - Triples!

I finally made it to HT this week for triple coupons. Of course, if you don't go early in the morning on the first day they tend to be out of a lot of things, but I did pretty well anyway. This is my first trip through - I'm hoping to do some more this weekend.

As a caveat, I didn't just buy the things I had coupons for - I also bought things we needed for the week like milk, bread, meat, veggies, etc. I always look for the best deals on these things too - I buy meat in bulk when it's a good sale and freeze it and I plan what veggies to eat based on what's on sale. Harris Teeter bread is, in fact, as it is advertised to be: Soft and Delicious. In any case, I did spend about $72 dollars today and saved $80.64 - but you do not HAVE to spend that much during triple coupons if you don't want to. If you're doing the $75 per week to get the $50 in gift cards promotion, you'll need to spend at least 75 unless it's an off week for you (you have to spend $75 16 out of 18 weeks).

Triples warnings/fine print: you can only triple up to 20 coupons per day. They will still take additional coupons, but beyond 20 they will not triple. And if you go back later that day, they will only double, not triple. Printable coupons that say "do not double or triple" almost always DO double or triple. Get your printables at couponmom.com and others (see links to the left). You may need to download a special driver for your printer in order to print them up. Make sure your printer is on when you print them. You can usually print up to two copies per coupon. BOGO items almost always ring at half price, so you don't need to buy two if you only have a coupon for 1. If your coupon specifies that you have to buy 2 (or more) to get the discount, you have to buy that many.

So, without further ado - here are some deals:

Kix cereal - orig. 2.99 - printable 75 cent coupon at couponmom.com - triples to 2.25 - final price, 74 cents.

Betty Crocker Warm Delights - orig. 1.89 - 50 cent coupons in the 9/13 and 10/4 smart source plus multiple printables so you can get a bunch of these (yum!) - triple to $1.50 - final price 49 cents each

Special K Granola Bars - orig. 3.19 - on sale 2 for $5 ($2.50 each) - printable coupons for 75 cents off Chocolate Pretzel variety - triples to $2.25 - final price 25 cents

Mueller's pasta (spagetti and elbow mac mainly) - orig. 1.50 per box on sale 5 for $5 ($1 each) - 55 cents for 2 coupon in the 10/4 smart source - triples to $1.65 - final price 35 cents for 2 (17 cents-ish for one)

Skippy Peanut butter 40 oz. - orig. 5.99 (BOGO - 2.99 for 1) - 40 cent coupon in 10/4 Red Plum - triples to $1.20 - final price $1.79

Jif Peanut Butter 28 oz. - orig. 4.39 (sale $3.49) 55 cent coupon in 10/11 Red Plum for Omega 3 variety, but I used it today for the "natural" variety and it worked fine - triples to $1.65 - final price $1.84

Wacky Mac spiral pasta - orig. $1.55 - printable 75 cent coupons triple to $2.25 - FREE!

Starkist Tuna Salad packet - orig. 1.99 - 75 cent coupon in 9/20 Red Plum - triples to $2.25 - FREE!

Bumble Bee Tuna pouch - orig. $1.99 - sale $1.79 - 55 cent coupon in 9/13 smart source -triples to $1.65 - final price 14 cents

Campbells condensed soup - cream of mushroom and cream of chicken - orig. $1.50 per can - sale 75 cents per can - 40 cents off 2 coupon in the 9/13 smart source - triples to $1.20 for 2 - final price 30 cents for 2 (15 cents each) Great for slow cooker recipes!

Carnation Evaporated Milk - orig 1.38 - sale $1 each - 50 cents off 2 coupon 9/27 smart source and 11/1 red plum - triples to $1.50 off two - final price 50 cents for 2 (25 cents each) - you can get these at Kroger for free this week if you do the buy 10 things, save $5 promotion, but that promo ends at close of business Saturday. Great for pumpkin pie!

Rhodes frozen rolls 12 ct - orig. 2.19 - sale $1.79 - printable 75 cent coupons make these FREE!

Smithfield Bacon - orig. 4.99 - sale 2 for $6 ($3 each) - 55 cent coupon in 10/25 smart source - triples to $1.65 - final price $1.35

Tonys Cripy Pizza - orig. 1.49, sale 1.17 - 50 cent coupons in 10/4 and 10/18 smart source make these FREE!

Kozy Shack pudding - orig. 3.19 - BOGO - sale for 1 is $1.60 - coupon 35 cents off in 10/4 smart source - final price 55 cents

General Foods International Coffee 100 cal pack cappuchinos - orig. 2.39 - 75 cent coupon in 10/4 smart source - triples to $2.25 - final price 14 cents

Other good deals this week:

eVIC special is 5lb bag of sugar for 99 cents

Coca Cola 24 pack cans BOGO

Pork Tenderloin BOGO - plus there are still $1 off pork coupons available in the meat section

Meal of the Week - HT brands OJ, Bacon, Bagels, Soft Cream Cheese, and Southern Style Hash Browns (I find it weird that there are no eggs included in this deal, but whatever) - You can use the $1 off pork coupons toward this bacon too.

FYI - do not try to use the $1 off pork coupon in addition to the 55 cents off smithfield bacon coupon - you can't use two coupons on the same item (not that I tried this or anything...) ;-)

Happy clipping everyone - I'll update more if I get shopping again this weekend!


Monday, November 2, 2009

HT Triple Coupons this Wednesday 11/4 - Happy Birthday to me!

Ok y'all - this is from Sue Stock, the official heads up. Triple coupons return at Harris Teeter this Wednesday, which also happens to be my birthday (Happy Birthday to me!)


So Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines! I may take the morning off...



Sunday, November 1, 2009

Kroger Deals this Week!!! Free toothpaste!

Ok, I know what you're saying. "WHAT? What about Harris Teeter??" Yes, I've already been there this week :-) But there are some phenomenal deals at Kroger right now worth checking out. I spent $31 and saved $66, plus I got a few items free! So here's the deal:

There's a promotion - if you buy 10 participating items, you get $5 back on your purchase. This is the case no matter how many sets of 10 you buy. So, for example, tonight I bought 30 participating items, so I got $15 back on the order. Not all the participating items are in the circular, so you may want to check out the couponmom.com database to find out which items have coupons AND are participating in the promo. You can also get a list in the store near the produce in the form of a "shopping list" - ask at the customer service desk if you can't find it. It may take some creativity to get the sets of 10 items and the best deals. Here's what I got:

2 bottles - All laundry detergent (99 cents each) - the sale/promo makes it $2.99 for the 26 to 32 loads bottle (includes "small and mighty" free & clear high efficiency detergent). There was a $2 off coupon in the 10/4 Red Plum making it 99 cents. I also had a printable $2 coupons so I got two at that price.

1 tube Colgate toothpaste (FREE!) - the sale/promo price is $1. There is a coupon for Colgate Total in the 10/25 Smart Source for $1 off. I took a chance and used this for regular tarter control whitening Colgate (not the Total kind, which was $2.50) and it worked! So I got it free.

2 cans Nestle Carnation evaporated milk (FREE) - You can use this with canned pumpkin to make pumkin pie. Sale price was 50 cents - coupon was in the 11/1 Red Plum for $1 off 2. There is a coupon for $1 off 4 cans of Libby veggies which I assume include pumpkin in the 9/27 Red Plum that I wish I knew about before I went shopping. These were not part of the promo but were on sale today.

1 bag Nestle chocolate morsels (99 cents) - Sale price is $1.99 - coupon in the 11/1 Red Plum for $50 off 1 (doubles to $1 off) Great for cookies!

4 bags Birds Eye frozen SteamFresh veggies (49 cents each) - Sale price$1.49 - coupons for 50 cents off in the 10/13 Smart Source and printables available. I had 3 printables not yet expired. Double to $1 off. 3 were for lightly sauced veggies. Frozen veggies are a time saver on busy nights and the freezing process preserves the vitamins, I've read :-)

6 bags Chex Mix (49 cents each) - Sale price $1.49 per bag (typically 2.89 or 3.15 per bag original price). Coupons were in the 10/25 Smart Source for $1 plus a whole mess of 50 cents printables that doubled. Chex Mix is a popular printable. I actually could have gotten more if I had printed more of the Chocolate Chex Mix ones - I didn't think they'd be included in this promo but they were!

1 container Land O Lakes spreadable butter (19 cents) - Sale price 99 cents - coupon in 10/18 smart source for 80 cents off.

2 packages Uncle Ben's Ready Rice (49 cents each) - Sale price was 99 cents each - coupon was in the 9/13 RP for $1 off 2. These are nice to have around for a quick side dish on busy nights.

5 cans Del Monte diced tomatoes (30 cents each) - Sale price was 49 cents each - coupon was in the 9/20 Red Plum for $1 off 5 cans of Del Monte veggies. Great to have on hand for chili!

Now, if you're counting along, You'll notice there are only 24 items here. To get these prices I needed to buy 30. No problem. I stocked up on 3 Edy's Slow Churned ice creams for $2.50 each and 2-liter Coke products - 4 for 79 cents each (that's cheaper than HT brand soda!) - I can use that for my next party :-) Yes, I normally pay a little less than $2.50 for ice cream, but this is Edy's - we used to buy it all the time at the sale price of $5.49 each. So I had to get some for old times sake!

I bought a few other needed items too like eggs (Eggland Best and Born Free has had some coupons out lately) and peppers (red, yellow, and orange for $1 each - normally $2.50 to $3 each). Produce at Kroger is not so hot in my experience unfortunately and tonight was no exception - otherwise I would have bought the organic bananas at the awesome price of 45 cents/lb. Normally at HT they would be up to 99cents/lb. for organic which is why we normally don't buy organic bananas - they have thick skins anyway.

Overall, it was a good haul - some great stock ups and some good deals on things we use all the time. Can't beat free toothpaste! There are probably plenty of other deals out there on other promo products that I don't usually purchase, so feel free to comment if you come up with any others this week. Now I'll be making some pumpkin pie this coming weekend - yum!

Yours in savings,

Saturday, October 31, 2009

NetworkedBlogs - Interface with loveli-mom on Facebook!

This is a test post to see if it really works - my blog is now networked on Facebook! Follow me to hear about great deals on lots of stuff, to learn how to save at the grocery store, and to read about various "mom" issues :-)

A Matter of Perspective

Washington Post - The Nobel Brisket goes too...


This is an interesting article about a different take on equality between women and men for domestic tasks. Women certainly believe they take on more of the domestic tasks even when both partners are working, but women DO tend to be reluctant to give up those tasks. As Ruth Marcus notes in the article, "We cling to our multitasking as much as we bemoan it."

I have a different take on this because we both work and my husband actually does do a lot of the domestic tasks: he is the one who cooks the most often, and he does the majority of the laundry and vacuuming. He does many of the typically male chores too like mowing the lawn. My domestic jobs tend to be cleaning and dusting things (though I don't do it as often as I probably should), taking care of making lunch for my daughter and packing her things, making appointments for her and others in the family, keeping track of everyone's schedules, birthdays, etc., and, of course, the meal planning and grocery shopping.

Meanwhile, I have intense guilt about the fact that I am not the one who cooks, does laundry, and cleans the kitchen. I also feel bad when I can't be the one to take my daughter to an appointment, pick her up from daycare, or stay home when she's sick. I am sharing the responsibilities, and I feel guilty that I don't do it all myself. I think this stems from my guilt at not being able to be that stay-at-home mom for my child like my mom was for me. That she can't count on Mommy to be there whenever she needs something. And in a lot of ways, I enjoy being able to do those caregiving tasks for her. I feel needed if I do her laundry or make her lunch. I feel I can show my love for her by taking care of her needs. Does my husband enjoy providing that level of caregiving as well? Sure - he feels great that he can be home with his little girl, and see her smile when he picks her up from daycare. He likes to see her happily eating food that he made for her (though I'm not sure he's so thrilled about cleaning up the mess).

I think the urge to be supermom/superwoman and the pressure we put on ourselves to be that is also due to our need for control. With so many things on my plate, I'm constantly feeling like I'm going to drop a ball. What if I forget to make that doctor's appointment? What if we run out of milk? Or I'm feeling like my life is generally out of control, like when the laundry doesn't get done and we have to scramble to find clothes, or when I forget to make Ks lunch and have to rush in the morning to get it done without being late for work. Even my husband feels it when I forget to clean the dishes I said I would do before bed, and he needs to do it at 11:30pm when he is getting ready to go up to bed. We'd love to live in an orderly world where we can do everything and do everything well - just like they do on TV and in those creative magazines. But you know what? Sometimes things just can't be perfect and there's really no need to expect them to be. Store-bought cupcakes can be just as tasty as homemade ones, mismatched clothes won't always been noticed or cared about by other kids at daycare, and my kid won't necessarily realize that I'm 2 minutes late for picking her up from daycare (though my wallet might realize it when I incur that late charge). It's hard to remember to just do the best you can and sit back and enjoy life once in a while. I'm lucky to have my husband, who is my safety net, but most of my stress is really a matter of perspective.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Old Navy and Borders coupon codes

Old Navy is having their Stuff and Save deal until 11/8 - 30% off your purchase if you use your Old Navy card and purchase $75 or more (free shipping online ) coupon code is ONSTUFF30


My friend E shared this Borders coupon code for 40% off one item: BSA6773F

This Week's Food Deals - Harris Teeter

Ok kids, I went shopping late this evening. FYI - They don't like it if you force them to open the non-self-checkout lanes after 10pm. Also, the meat counter guys are no longer there - that's a bummer. I like talking to them.

Anyway, I got some good deals today, but I have to admit, I spent less time preparing and checking out coupon deals than usual. However, there were a few free or near free deals to be had. Keep in mind, MANY coupons are expiring tomorrow and Sunday, especially the online printables.

Meal of the week: Stouffer's Family Size frozen meal + big bag of lettuce + 2liter Pepsi product for $5.99 (save $5.32)

Martha White Muffin Mix packets - BOGO - original price $1.19 - Coupon is from 8/9 smart source for 55 cents. Final price is $0.09 for two. (or FREE for one)

Mueller Spaghetti and Elbow Mac - $1 each - Coupon is from 10/4 smart source and is 55 cents off two. Final price: 45 cents each for 2

Wacky Mac Veggie Spiral pasta $1.55 - there was a printable coupon expiring tomorrow for 75 cents off 1. Final price: 5 cents

Electrasol Geltabs (20) - BOGO - original price is $5.99 so sale price is $2.99. Coupon is from 10-11 smart source for 50 cents off one - final price $1.99

Jolly Time Popcorn - BOGO - orig. 2.69 - sale 1.34 - coupon was in the 9/27 smart source for 50 cents off one. final price = 34cents for one box

Pace specialty salsa - orig. $3.99 - sale $2.50 coupon was in 8/30 smart source for 50 cents off one - final price $1.50

Other non-coupon but good sale deals:

HT 93/7 ground beef, 2.99/lb

Beer - Sam Adams is 6.99 per 6-pack (reg. $8.99) - Heine, Amstel Light, Harp and Yuengling (cans) are also on sale

Eastern apples (like McIntosh) are 99cents per pound (savings of about 80 cents per pound)

Red Grapefruit 99 cents each

Broccoli crowns 1.49/lb

Red and Yellow bell peppers 2 /$5

Banana Baby chocolate covered frozen bananas are BOGO - orig $5.19, sale $2.59

Aquarius Spring water, 24 pack $2.99 (orig. $7.99)

Shame, shame, know your name, to anyone who buys the Breyers Ice Cream on sale this week for $5.39 per package. With all the buy 2 get 3 free deals and BOGOs HT has been doing and the Breyers coupon that was out a while ago, no one should be paying more than $2.50 for ice cream anymore :-)

Boston Market deals - one ends on Halloween!

You snooze, you lose chicken. My mom sent me a coupon for a $1 chicken meal at Boston Market last week. I didn't print it out, and now Boston Market has yanked that promotion due to it's popularity (darn!)

But I did visit the website to check for other promotions and found that there is a "2 Kids Eat Free" promotion that is ending tomorrow (Halloween). You can get up to 4 free kids meals with a family dinner package. But the kids needs to be present to claim their meals. Could be a great option for a pre-trick or treat dinner!

There are several other coupons available on their site ($1 off an indivdual meal, $2 off a $10 purchase, and $4 off a $20 purchase) These are supposedly good until the end of November. Unless they become too popular, I guess!

Hey, who remembers when it was just Boston Chicken? Still tasty after all these years...

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Payless Shoes deal - tomorrow Oct. 30th only!

Tomorrow Oct. 30th only, you can get half off of anything in the store at Payless Shoes! Just print out the coupon or text them to get one sent to your mobile phone.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Christmas Savings

I am starting to think about Christmas this year, and I know there must be some GREAT ways to save out there. For example, Playskool has a ton of coupons for their toys out on their website right now. But I am wondering what YOUR strategies are for saving at the holidays?

Comment please on this post - what are the best ways to save on holiday cards, stocking stuffers, holiday gifts, wrapping paper, etc? Best stores to shop? Who has the best sales and when? What about those early bird deals on Black Friday after Thanksgiving? Are they worth it?

Some hard learned coupon lessons...

FYI - I've been not so thrilled with couponmom.com lately. I've found it to be easier and more accurate to just look at the Harris Teeter specials that I get via email (you can click on them and see all of them from your email link), and then find the needed coupons in Sue Stock's coupon database. http://projects.newsobserver.com/taking_stock

I've been checking both just to cover all areas. Keep in mind, the printable coupons aren't noted in these databases, so you may have coupons for things that are on special already printed out. Sometimes these coupons as better than the ones in the paper (55 cents off one package instead of off two, for example), and they have always doubled or tripled for me even if they say "do not double or triple."

Saturday, October 24, 2009

This Week's Food Deals - Harris Teeter

Sorry this is late this week for anyone who actually reads this - I know since HT's prices change on Wednesday it's better to let you know these things before the weekend really starts!

Anyway, I saved a bunch this week, considering it wasn't even triple or super double coupons. Those are coming back soon though, I can smell it. The lady at the check out says the pattern is usually crabs on sale, then shrimp on sale, then triple or super double coupons the week after that, though she reiterated "usually" a few times. We'll see - I've got a whole bunch of great coupons to use when those come up either way.

So, the meal of the week is Lasagna! You get HT Brand noodles, sauce, ricotta, shaved parmesean cheese, shredded mozzerella, ground italian sausage, and frozen garlic bread for only $9.99 - good deal!

Meat Deals:

My HT has $1 off fresh pork coupons in the meat section. I got 3 types of pork on sale this week and having the $1 off was great to add to that. They'll let you use however many of those coupons per visit as you want. The pork I got included:

Baby Back Ribs - BOGO

HT "Natural" Italian Sausage (this is near the actual butcher section where they sell the meat by the steak or by the pound - not the HT regular italian sausage). That was a BOGO too - $6.24 orig. price, makes them $3.12 each plus the $1 off coupon for each = $2.12.

HT ground pork from the Meal of the Week - so my meal of the week was only $8.99 with the $1 off pork coupon.

Other pork deals with the coupons:
Whole Pork Sirloin was on sale as well, though I didn't get it, for $1.99 per lb.
Hormel Ham is also a BOGO

Keep the coupons if you get some - they're good until December and you can use them on any fresh pork including bacon.

My other great meat deal was steak - Top Sirloin family pack - got $5 off with eVIC

Best Halloween Candy deal so far: eVIC special on candy - 99cents for 1 bag of fun size mars candy bars (Snickers, 3 Musketeers, etc) - there's a limit of 1 at this price, but the regular VIC sale price is 2 for $4. Plus there was a coupon for $1 off 2 bags of Mars candy bars in the 10/11 Red Plum - total for 2 bags - $1.99.

Best Ice Cream Deal yet! - Breyers Ice Cream is a BOGO (orig. $5.59, price for one $2.79) plus there was a 75cent coupon in the 10/18 Red Plum - doubles to $1.50 off so price you pay for one is $1.29. I got Heath bar flavor because it's D's favorite (I don't hate it either). I can't believe I used to pay full price for ice cream. I haven't spent more than $2.50 on ice cream since I started this whole thing.

Best Yogurt Deal - Yoplait yogurt - 10 for $5 - coupons in the 9/13 and 10/18 Smart Sources for 40cents off of 6 - doubles to 80 cents so final cost is 37 cent each

Other deals:

HT canned green beans, corn, and peas are buy 2 get 3 free - great deal if you go through lots of canned veggies with a baby/toddler like we do. Green beans are K's favorite! It says Limit 10, but I'm not so sure about that. There was a limit on the Progresso soup buy 2 get 3 free deal too, and I exceeded it with no problem!

Heinz Ketchup - the 20oz. bottles are 2 for $4, two coupons in the 10/4 smart source (there were duplicates that week) for 75cents off - doubles to $1.50. So the total price you pay for each of the two is 50 cents.

Herbal Essences shampoo or conditioner - (orig. 3.79 - sale 2.50) - Coupon for $1 off in 9/13 Red Plum - total is $1.50

Celentano Ravioli and Meatballs in the frozen section are a BOGO - good time to stock up! We keep these on hand for easy dinners - K loves the turkey meatballs.

Dole Fruit cups - (orig. 2.65, sale $2 each) - coupon 75cents off 1 in 8/9 smart source, doubles to $1.50 - total is 50 cents for the 4 pack - and/or you can use the 75cents off 2 from the same paper and pay $1.25 each for 2.

Fresh Express salad (orig. 3.29, sale 2 for $5) - coupon is 55 cents off 2 (doubles to $1.10) in the 10/4 Smart Source - final price is 3.90 for 2 or $1.95 each.

Chex Mix (orig. 2.89 each - sale 2 for $5) - coupons printed online at coupon mom are all expiring by halloween - they are for 50cents off - doubles to $1 so they are $1.50 each. I had 4 coupons for this type. Note, this is not the cheapest I've gotten chex mix - I've gotten them at 17 cents a bag before during triples when they were on sale, but since these coupons are expiring, if you like chex mix, now is the time.

Coupon note - I used 22 coupons at HT this week - the limit is supposed to be 20, but it was not a problem. Just FYI. Incidentally, I saved 42% this week - that maybe offsets the amount we spent at the fair!

Drug Store Deal
- keep an eye on your mail and paper for the great $25 gift card coupons you can use for any new or transferred prescriptions at CVS or Rite Aid. They've been coming out once every couple of months, usually 2 at a time. You can use it for any new scripts - antibiotics, dose changes on old scripts, basically any script you fill that's not a refill. Even though it says on the coupons that you can only use one per visit, they let me use two the other day. If your copay on your insurance is less than $25 per script, you can actually make $ on this deal. Don't forget to use your coupons and shop sales at the drug store to make that $25 gift card go as far as possible!

Friday, October 16, 2009

This Week's Food Deals

Some good deals on things we buy a lot of this week at Harris Teeter so I stocked up.

eVIC deal is HT butter - 97cents

Tuttorosso canned tomatoes are buy 2 get 3 free - lemme tell you, that's a lot of gravy! I think there are meatballs in our future.

HT REAL maple syrup (the only kind Dave will eat, not that HFCS stuff) is actually on sale (wow!) this week. It never is. So the small bottles are only $4.99 instead of $6.99. Given that there's no price break for buying the big bottle anyway (it usually costs $14), I bought a bunch of little bottles.

Tyson 100% natural frozen chicken nuggets - these are fantastic for Katie, easy to microwave and come in a resealable bag. I've been waiting for weeks for them to go on sale and finally they did! Normally $7.29 a bag, they are $5.99 on sale, PLUS there were $1 off Tyson frozen breaded chicken coupons in the 8/2 Smart Source and this past weekend's paper.

Stonyfield Farm yogurt is on sale 10 for $5 (or 50 cents each) - you can get some coupons on the Stonyfield website if you haven't already printed them this month. I had a few coupons for buy 4 get one free from the lids of previous yogurts.

Chobani Greek Yogurt is 5 for $5 - it's hard to get greek yogurt for less than $1.50 a cup, but I love that stuff. There was an Oikos coupon a few weeks ago, but I'd save that for when Oikos is on sale again or it's super double coupons.

HT bacon is a BOGO making it $2 a package for the thick sliced kind

At my HT in Durham, there were coupons in the meat area for $1 off any fresh pork product. I got the meal of the week (which is Brats, hot dog buns, chips, and HT soda for $6.99 - save $5.10) - since the Brats are pork I got an extra $1 off the meal. Not the healthiest meal of the week, but a tasty (and cheap) one - I can always add a salad and milk to the Brats and save the chips and soda for an upcoming party.

Purex laundry detergent (96 loads) was on sale for 8.99 (usually 12.99) Add the coupon from the Smart Source on 8/16 (it's only 35 cents, but it double to 70) - the detergent is 8.29. They do make high efficiency detergent btw, and it's included in the sale for those with front load washers.

All laundry detergent 50oz is a BOGO and there were coupons in the 10/4 Red Plum and in the 8/2 Red Plum. They also make high efficiency.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Going out ot eat? Tips for saving

I just found this interesting article about how restaurants use advertising "psychology" to get you to spend more money -

Sneaky ways restaurants use menus to entice you to spend more

Shared via AddThis

Some other tips for saving:

1. (Duh) Use a coupon. There are many coupons available in the Entertainment books for various areas as well as in the newspapers and mailers. You can actually sometimes get a coupon on the restaurant's website, especially if you sign up for their special emails or newsletters. Often there are some restrictions on the coupon like when you can use it (Sunday through Thursday), so pay attention to that before going out to eat. However, I've used Sunday through Thursday coupons on the weekend (specifically at Tyler's Tap Room in Durham) without a problem. If you use Entertainment book coupons, it doesn't hurt to call in advance and ask if they are still taking those coupons.

2. Check the prices from multiple restaurants you're interested in on their websites before going out. Sometimes you can get a fabulous dinner for cheaper at a lesser known place.

3. Get restaurant gift cards at reduced prices. On http://www.couponmom.com under Restaurant Coupons, special codes are advertised, for 60 to 90% off restaurant gift cards you can purchase online from http://www.restaurants.com You can get $25 gift cards for $1 to $4. These are specific to certain restaurants and are not always in stock depending upon the kind of card and the restaurant.

4. Skip the appetizer/dessert(unless you have a coupon) or share among everyone at the table. Also skip the pricey alcohol. Soda or milk for your kid can also be pricey, especially if there are no free refills. I've paid up to $3 for a glass of milk when I forgot to bring some for my daughter - for that you could get a whole gallon at the store! Some kids meals already come with a drink, which tends to be cheaper - but check the prices to make sure. There are some alcohol specials lately though that can be worth it. For example, Chili's brought their margarita prices down to $4 at a lot of locations. This does not guarantee a large margarita, and many restaurants are skipping the top shelf liquor for cheaper brands, but who can tell in a mixed drink anyway?

5. Go when kids eat free or cheap. If you have multiple kids, this may be especially important. It may be an off night for eating out though, like at Moe's where kids eat free on Tuesdays. Incidentally, if you like Moe's sign up on their website to get a free burrito on your birthday. They also now have junior versions of all the burritos, though I never had a problem ordering a Mini Moo Cow even though I'm over 12. Some restaurants may allow you to let your kids share an adult meal, which may end up being cheaper in the long run. Look out for sharing or extra plate charges though.

6. Don't forget to take home your leftovers. I've had them boxed up and left them sitting on the table before. Not cool - this could be lunch for tomorrow!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Pampers Gifts to Grow

We bought two huge boxes of Pampers at Babies R Us this past weekend and got a free $15 gift card to the store. If you do the math, this is a good deal for Pampers, but not an excellent deal for diapers. You can get deals on smaller packs of Luvs or store brands like Target's up and up for cheaper when they have sales and you've got coupons. I've gotten them as low as 15 cents per diaper that way, but the pampers this weekend were 18 cents per diaper. For Pampers, though, that's a deal. Usually you can't get those any cheaper than 20 cents per diaper for the Baby Dry. We also got some needed wipes.

The cool thing is that I can now put the "Gifts to Grow" points from these packages into the website and redeem rewards like toys or a Barnes n Noble gift card, among many other things. Wipes packages are counted as triple G2G points right now, and there is a separate code for each wipes refill in the large box. There's a separate code for each small package of diapers in the big boxes too. I used 4 of my points to enter us in a Sea World/Sesame Place vacation sweepstakes too (hey, you never know).

As parents of babies and toddlers we all buy tons of diapers and wipes anyway - might as well get something out of it! As far as I know, if you buy other Pampers products (like the bibs) you can get points for those too. http://www.pampers.com/en_US/home/

Friday, October 9, 2009

Additional Weekend Deals 10/9/09

Didn't realize these deals until I shopped at Harris Teeter today...

eVIC deal - Harris Teeter Cresent Rolls are FREE. This deal was advertised online but not in the store so I just had to trust it at the checkout - and it did ring up as free.

Eggland's Best Eggs - they are BOGO, but one item will ring at half price making them $1.44 each. Add the 35 cent coupon from 9/13 (which doubles to 70 cents) and you get one dozen for 74 cents. I know that regular HT eggs are only 39 cents with eVIC this week, but if you're into specialty eggs (vegetarian fed hens and Omega 3s etc) this deal is for you.

Strawberries are buy 1 get 2 free

Cheerios - usual price $3.69 - on sale for 2 for $5 - printable coupon for $1.00 off two boxes, makes them $2 per box. Incidentally, this is the most I typically pay anymore for cereal. With triple or super double coupons or just with special sales I've often paid less than $1 per box.

Chef Boyardee 7.5 oz microwavable bowls - on sale 5 for $5, 2 coupons on 10/4 for 40cents off two - doubles to 80 cents off two. - that brings them down to 60 cents each.

Nature's Own 100% Whole Grain Bread 2 for $3

Weight Watchers Yogurt on sale for 5 for $3 (60 cents each) - 9/27 coupon for 55 cents off two, you pay 10 cents each.

Dannon yogurt is on sale 10 for $4 - coupons for $1 off 10 can be found in the 8/16 and 9/13 Smart Source circulars.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Weekend Deal Alerts

Some deals this weekend:

- if you buy two boxes of Pampers at Babies R Us or Toys R Us, you get a $15 dollar gift card.

- Best Buy sent out a 15% coupon for higher priced items - might be that opportunity to buy an eco-friendly appliance and take advantage of the tax credits.

At Harris Teeter
- eVic special is 39cents for a dozen eggs
- Eggo Waffles are $1.50 and there was a 55cent coupon this past Sunday - that means it doubles to $1.10 off making your waffles 40 cents.
-Harris Teeter ice cream is buy 2 get 3 free :-)

More later!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Deep Fried Deals

The State Fair is back in town with all it's deep fried deliciousness October 15th through the 25th. There are advance sale tickets online for admission and for rides at:


or at a number of retailers in the area http://ncstatefair.org/2009/Tickets/AdvanceSales.htm

Advanced tix for ages 13 and up are $5 instead of $7 and for kids ages 6-12, they are $1 instead of $2. The rides are really the better advanced sale deal - you can get 18 ride tix for $10 (normally $1 per ticket). If you go on Preview Day (Thurs. Oct 15 from 3:30pm to midnight) you can get a wristband for unlimited rides for $25. Everyone else can enjoy these rides for me, since Dave believes no price is worth risking your life on a ride that needs to be taken down and put back together every couple of weeks.

As usual, the concert tickets for the shows in Dorton Arena are cheap, cheap, cheap ranging from $5 to $15 dollars. I remember the Clay Aiken craze several years ago when people were selling these $15 show tickets on eBay for $80 or more. This year American Idol faves performing include Anoop Desai (aka Anoop-doggie-dog or, as Dave calls him, "that no-talent-ass-clown-tarheel") and Kellie Pickler (bless her simple heart - but I do love that Back of Your Mind song). If you're a country fan, you can see Jason Michael Carroll, Eric Church, Blake Shelton, or Jamey Johnson. Probably most of my friends would rather listen to nails on a chalkboard with me (sigh) but I'm sure they'll be great shows :-)

Don't ask me what the cheapest deep fried dish is yet, but I'll let you know as soon as we get out to the fair - I'm splurging on the fried oreos no matter what.

Of course, you can always go on canned food day (Thursday, Oct. 22nd) to get the best admission deal - 4 cans of food gets you in. Imagine how cheap that could be if you get the cans on sale or using a coupon! :-)

A great blog to find out about fair giveaways is here:

You can follow them on facebook or twitter too. Just a note, the Demolition Derby is pretty good entertainment, but will cost you $7. Meanwhile, the pig races are free! Doesn't get better than that!

Keep in mind, the parking can getcha - consider parking at one of the malls and taking the shuttle bus in.

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Updated "Grocery Store Savings" Post

A while ago, I posted a note on facebook in response to the many questions people had about how I save money at the grocery store using coupons. I still do not consider myself as an expert on this topic, since there are many others who are in on this game and even make a living at it, so I invite everyone to comment on this with additional tips.

I started by reading the free e-books at http://www.couponmom.com (which is free to become a member of) to understand the strategies behind it all. That site is not for the faint of heart - it's a bit complicated. My approach has been simpler because, frankly, I don't have the time to go from store to store looking documenting prices. I started out that way and discovered that Kroger base prices are cheaper than Harris Teeters, but HT's sale prices are better and they double coupons at a higher rate (more on that later). I have been also told that http://www.thegrocerygame.com is also really good, but you only get a free trial after which you have to pay a fee for the site.

The basic tenets of my approach are this:

1. Plan your meals

Do your best to plan your meals, at least in general. Plan two to three dinner menus for the week based on what is on-sale for meat and veggies at the grocery store. Make enough at each meal to have at least one night of leftovers, if not more. If you're making a ton (like soup) consider freezing the leftovers to eat on nights you are pressed for time.

Plan what you are going to take for lunch based on what is on-sale as well as what you have coupons for. We take a lot of PB & J - but also leftovers from dinner, or something we can make sunday night and partition into lunch size leftovers like ziti, for example. HT had a buy two get three free sale on cold cuts last week, so we're having sandwiches this week.

We have the same things for breakfast all the time. For example, I often take a light english muffin with peanut butter or cream cheese, a small bag of fruit like grapes or strawberries, and coffee in the car with me to work. I try to buy multiple packages of all of these things when there is a sale, or when I have a coupon or, preferably both. I freeze my english muffins in freezer bags and they are still good to toast later. The light english muffins don't go on sale all that often, so I tend to buy a lot when they are on sale. Cereal sales are great too - when they do triple or super double coupons you can get some as low as 25 cents per box. I never pay more than $2 for a box of cereal of any type in a few months.

2. Get a newspaper delivered

You can just get the Sunday paper if you're getting the News and Observer. Take the "SmartSource" and the "RedPlum" coupon circulars out and write the date at the top of the circulars. Save them. Also save any special coupon circulars like from General Mills or Proctor and Gamble (P&G) and put the date at the top of those.

3. Take advantage of special loyalty or rewards programs at your store

Everyone should have a discount card on their keychain for these stores. If you don't - do it ASAP! If you forget your card they can look it up by your phone number. Also, Enroll in eVIC at http://www.harristeeter.com - you will get specials in addition to the typical VIC-card savings that are NOT advertised in the store. You will get an email about these specials each week - print this email so you remember what the specials are! One week it was FREE 64oz orange juice. This past week it was a 97 cent 5lb bag of potatoes. You also may get a special eVIC deal printed at the bottom of your receipt when you check out so you can come back for that deal another time that week. You are also registered to win $100 worth of groceries and a new winner is announced via this email each week. If you don't shop at Harris Teeter, check your local stores and store websites for these types of programs.

4.Print coupons online

Sign up to get emails from Couponmom.com – there are printable coupons on this website and links to other websites with printable coupons. Couponmom will email you when the coupons are “restocked” so you can print new ones each week. You can also specify which items you use the most often and couponmom will give you a heads up when coupons for those things are coming out in your area. Many of these coupons will print out saying "Do not Double or Triple" at the top. But they always seem to double and triple at HT for me with no problem. I wish I had realized this sooner! Some of these coupons can be printed more than once so if it's an item you'd like to stock up on, try to get a few.

Also, sign up for Upromise (google this) – you can link coupons directly to your grocery store card online. The amount of the coupon will be kept in an account that you can transfer to your child's 529 account for college. You will not see this amount deducted from your bill at the store though just FYI - it's just a way to help you save. You can use Upromise at multiple online retailers. Just be sure to check which coupons you signed up for before heading out to the store so you don't foregt about them . These are usually restocked each month.

6. Find coupons for your favorite items and brands

If you are loyal to certain brands, check their websites for coupons and ways to get special orders. You can print coupons from the Stonyfield Farm website for example, and Pampers has a special program where you can enter product codes from things you buy and get “points” toward special coupons and deals on diapers. Luvs diapers coupons are hard to find, but if you sign up on the website you will get some mailed to you. We also get $5 coupons for Hills Science Diet dog food on their website.

7.Save your printed coupons you get when you check out at the grocery store.

ALWAYS check these and the bottom of your receipt in case there are deals you didn't know about on your eVIC card. Last week, I had a coupon print that was $1 off my next order. No specific product to buy. Another was for free YoCrunch yogurt (nothing to buy with it).

8.Use a coupon database (or multiple databases)

After you have all your coupons, check the coupon databases on CouponMom.com when the new prices come out. For Kroger, it's Sundays. For Harris Teeter, it is Wednesdays. You should log in as a member to do this and find the North Carolina stores on the pull down lists. These databases list what is on sale AND what coupons go with those sale items. It tells you which coupon circulars (by date and by type of circular) the coupons came from. The idea is to buy things when they are on sale AND with a coupon to get the lowest prices. Make your shopping list based on what you need and will use, and based on this information. Write a little “c” on your shopping list next to items you have a coupon for.

FYI - Sue Stock makes a list like this every Wednesday called Wednesday Deals you can check out and she keeps a database of all the coupons that come out in the newspaper. You can look up coupons by brand name, and she lists the date and kind of circular the coupon came in (Smart Source, Red Plum, etc.) She also lists expiration dates and prints the ones about to expire in bold.

Not all of your local specials will be on coupon mom, so it's a good idea to look through the weekly specials on the grocery store website and see if you have coupons for those items. This is especially true for printable coupons. Check out Couponing 101 to find more sale and coupon match ups, especially with printable coupons!. Harris Teeter has a nice function where you can click on the sale items you are interested in and it keeps a list for you that you can print or email to yourself.

9.Get a coupon organizer.

You can get them at office supply stores. Keep your printed coupons in there sorted by type of item. Keep any coupons you clipped from the circular but didn't end up using the previous week in the organizer. Have a section in the front for coupons you plan to use that day. Leave the back section open to use as a place to store the coupons you ACTUALLY use at the store. As you pick up the items and put them in your cart, move the coupon you plan to use to this back pocket. (You will almost always end up not using all of your coupons in one trip that you planned to use, either because the store is out of an item or you found a better deal by buying something on sale or that is the store brand.) This way, when you get to the check out, you have a pile of coupons for things that are actually in your cart ready to go. You can also count your coupons more easily – you may need to do this because many stores have a limit on number of coupons allowed in a visit. HT lets you use as many as you want but will only double up to 20 per day.

10. Save BIG with triple or super double coupons!

Pay attention to your grocery store emails and the coupon mom data base as well as this blog: Sue Stock – http://projects.newsobserver.com/taking_stock to find out when Harris Teeter is doing triple coupons or super double coupons. This is when you want to stock up. Sue Stock's blog is awesome for finding deals in general! I recommend checking her site every day if you live in the Raleigh/Durham area

11. Learn and live the coupon rules

Kroger will double coupons every day that are up to 50 cents off (meaning if you have a 45 cent coupon for Cheezits, you can get 90 cents off at Kroger. If you have a coupon that is for 55 cents though, all you get is the 55 cents off.

Harris Teeter doubles coupons every day up to 99 cents. So that 55 cent Cheezits coupon is worth $1.10 off at Harris teeter. That $1.00 coupon for Cheerios though is only work $1.

When Harris Teeter does triple coupons (usually it's for one week only at a time), it's for up to 99 cents. So if you have a 75 cent coupon for Coffee, you would get $2.25 off of that coffee. But if you have $1 coupon for that same coffee, you would still only get $1 off.

When Harris Teeter does super double coupons, it's for up to $1.98. So that $1 coupon you have for the coffee doubles to $2. The 75 cent coupon only doubles to $1.50 though – basically the usual doubling rules are the same, you just get to double those $1 and $1.50 coupons as well as the ones under $1.

As I've said before, I've found that printable coupons that say Do Not Double or Triple almost always DO double or triple. (Really detailed note, you'll notice that some coupons say, Not to be doubled or tripled, or something similar at the top. I've been told that some of those WILL still double if their serial number starts with a 5. If it starts with a 9 though, you're out of luck.)

There is a difference between a “store coupon” (put out by that store) and a “manufacturer's coupon” (put out by the company that makes the product). You can usually "stack" a manufacturer's coupon on top of a store coupon, meaning you can use both at one time. There aren't many “store coupons” out there - Target does these though and you can stack them. I recently had a coupon for $3 off pampers for a Target “store coupon” plus $1.50 off “manufacturer's coupon” so I got a total of $4.50 off the package.

If you miss a Sunday coupon circular, I've been told you can get them again in either the Wednesday or Thursday papers, but I haven't tried this. When this happened to me, I advertised on Craig's list and picked them up (two copies actually) for $2 (the cost of the sunday paper) from someone locally. Keep in mind that if you see many coupons you would plan to use in the Sunday paper, you can always figure out if it would be worth it to buy two papers to get additional coupons. Subscribing to the newspaper is cheaper though and you CAN only subscribe to the Sunday one (not the whole week ) if you want. The N&O is allowing subscribers to get multiple Sunday papers delivered for only $1 extra per paper now - you can check out their website to sign up if you want this deal.

At the store, pay attention to the type of item that coupon is for – it may be a specific type of a product – like not all Colgate toothpastes but only Colgate Total Advanced Fresh. When you get to the store, you should check to make sure that using that coupon will get you the best deals for what you need. If all you need is plain old toothpaste, not this fancy stuff, the plain toothpaste may be cheaper than the fancy one even if you have a coupon for the fancy one. I've been told by a friend who works at a grocery store that sometimes you can buy the plain old toothpaste with the fancy coupon, but you'll have to roll the dice to find out. You can always put the item back.

12. Live and Learn the SALE rules

If something is 2 for $5 it will ring as $2.50 if you just buy 1. Same for any other such offer (e.g., 10 for $10 – you buy one, it will ring as $1 – don't feel you need to buy 10 of them to save unless it's something you use all the time and you want to stock up!) Occasionally there are 10 for 10 deals that require you to buy all 10 like HT's deal this week on store brand items. You can mix and match but you need to buy all 10 to get the deal. There's also a deal this week that you'll get $4 off General Mills cereals if you buy 4. You can use coupons with these deals for extra savings.

Buy one, get one free (otherwise known as BOGO) – most of the time if you just buy one of these it will ring at half price. If you're unsure you can always ask. When there are buy 2 get 3 free deals at HT, you actually do have to buy all 5 to get the deal.

Just because something is on sale doesn't mean it's on sale for it's lowest price or that another brand or the store brand isn't cheaper. Compare the prices before you buy. Make sure cheaper product is what you want though – for example, some breads are 100% whole wheat and others are just “wheat” - the “wheat” ones are cheaper, but usually aren't 100% whole grain. If you have particular feelings about a type of product, try to find coupons or wait until it is on sale to stock up.

13. Don't Get Carried Away...

DON'T buy things just because you have a coupon unless you REALLY think you will use it and it is REALLY cheap. I usually look over my cart one last time before heading to the check out to make sure I don't need to put anything back. The only other exception to that rule is if the item is FREE because it's on sale and you have a coupon. Then, you might as well get it, even if all you do is donate it to a local food pantry. I get free items kind of frequently because it is on sale and a doubled coupon exceeds the amount it costs during the sale.

14. Double Check Your Savings

When checking out, make sure all the sales you had planned on and coupons ring up correctly. If you notice any problems you can always go to customer service to get it fixed. Sometimes this will get you an item FREE. Keep in mind that you may need to wait until the whole receipt is printed out to be sure this happens. The receipts can be somewhat difficult to read - usually you'll see the VIC savings right underneath the item, then the coupons will show up later. Meal of the week deals usually show up a little strangely, with some items showing up free and other items showing up at a discount.

15. Be aware of special promotions

Harris Teeter is doing a promotion this year that if you spend $75 per week for 16 out of 18 weeks before the holidays you can get two $50 gift cards to almost any store you want. I almost didn't hit my $75 mark during triple coupons, but ended up needing to pick up something extra just before the price week ended. If you think you might not make the $75 in an upcoming week, put off purchasing something you need that you know won't change prices (e.g., I put off buying oatmeal which is cheapest when you buy the HT version, so I could make $75 the next week - I knew it would be the same price whether I bought it this week or next, and it wasn't a desperate need). I'm not saying to buy extra stuff just to make it, and you do get two by weeks. But just be aware of "when" you are spending. You don't need to make the 75 all in one trip either, just within the same week.

15. Don't forget to re-organize when you're done

After shopping, be sure to refile your unused coupons and throw out any expired ones. Then brag about your savings! ;-) Hope this is helpful to people - I know that I have had a blast seeing how much I can save. It does take time, but it has cut down tremendously on our bill. We also stock up on things when they are cheap and have less to buy later.