What most people don't understand about couponing is that it takes time. In order to be a good steward of your time, you have to use it wisely. You have got to take into account that you have a family, church and community activities, a house and yard that needs managing, plus all the things in life that seem to get in the way.
I don't recommend trying to become extreme in couponing or stocking up on massive amounts of groceries all in one week. Also, don't focus on the bragging rights of other people who coupon. Sure, they may say they paid $2 for $200 of groceries but what they won't tell you is that most of the items they bought they may never use or that it took them 30 hours to develop their shopping plan. If you focus on both of these, you will become mentally drained before you even begin to see results in couponing.
So, take control today of the way you need to shop and save.
1. Make a list of the grocery items you and your family won't budge on. I know this is probably the opposite of what most people will tell you, but I've learned from experience that life is too short to force your family into new eating habits all at once. Next, write down the regular prices for these items. You can either pull out a recent receipt or take the list to the store the next time you go. How do you know that you are saving if you don't really know the price? Now you can pay attention to the coupons that are available and sale prices.
If you need to find a coupon, use an online coupon database, like SouthernSavers and Hip2Save. Jenny and Collin spend a great deal of time keeping the databases on their websites updated. Just search the item, print, trade, etc.
Just take it easy and don't put pressure on yourself. Savvy shopping and saving money is a way of life. You've got to make it a part of your regular routine.
Have you ever been on a scavenger hunt? You race all over town collecting random items on a list in order to claim your fame as the winner. It’s some of the hardest work you’ll ever do that adds absolutely nothing of value to your life. But, it sure can be fun.
When I was in high school at Oxford, a friend from a neighboring school, David Wingard, hosted an annual scavenger hunt that probably left many Anniston residents confused. It’s probably a good thing that I can’t recall anything on the list in order to not incriminate myself. But, I’d just like to say that if your yard Gnome went missing one day about 20 years ago and you later discovered it under the bushes, you were not losing your mind. On behalf of every teen who participated, I would like to apologize to you and your sanity. We were good kids. And, we sure had fun.
Couponing is similar to scavenger hunts in many ways. Except couponing does add value to your life, as well as your pocketbook. The first question I’m asked by someone who wants to begin couponing is, “Where do I find coupons.” And, my answer is simple, “Everywhere.” If you pay close attention, you will find coupons on products you have in your pantry, on items to purchase, you may receive them in the mail, they are in your newspaper and magazines and they are online.
So, this week I thought I would save you some time from racing all over the place in the quest for coupons and give you my very own coupon scavenger hunt. Don’t print everything in site or you will soon find yourself out of ink and racing all over town trying to buy more. Instead, look around the sites and register for the ones you know you will use. (That email address that you need only for couponing will come in handy now). Then, print only what you know you will buy or items you might try.
Here is a list of places online that you can print manufacturer coupons to get you started:
I’ve been asked a lot lately about the return of coupon inserts in The Anniston Star. We are being honest when telling readers that we are working on it. Just like any business, we have to negotiate contracts with the companies that distribute coupon inserts, like Smart Source, Red Plum and P&G. We hope to have them soon and I’ll make sure to let you know as soon as I do.
Now, have fun in your online scavenger hunt for coupons.
Each week Clip2Save is featured in The Piedmont Journal (Tues), The Jacksonville News (Wed), The Cleburne News (Thurs) and The Anniston Star (Thurs). This is a list of local coupons in Clip2Save for the week of June 26th.
Monet Salon & Day Spa: Free Haircut with any chemical service with new stylists, Jessica McFall, Lesli Bussie & Brooke Johnson.
Terrapin Outdoor Center: 10% Off MSRP on all retail purchases (Ex. 7/31/11)
Jacksonville Muffler & Auto Repair: $5 Off Oil Change, 10% Off All Services & Tires. (Ex 9/30/11)
Neat & Clean 100% Hand Car Wash: $20 Off Wash & Wax Special Cars & Trucks (Ex 6/30/11)
Advanced Carpet Cleaning: $10 Off (Ex 6/30/11)
Bo's Lawn Care: $10 Off 1st cut
Piper's Playhouse: $4 Off Dog Day Care, up to 3 days and $5 Off Boarding & Day Care, up to 3 days (Ex 6/30/11)
Anniston Museum: Admit one child free with one paid adult admission (June 1-Aug 31, 2011)
Anniston Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram: Tuesday, Ladies Special $26.95 oil change with Free tire rotation
Repeats Consignment Store: Get $5 Off any purchase of $30 or more (Ex 7/31/11)
Berman Museum: Admit one child free with one paid adult admission (June 1-Aug 31, 2011)
Redneck Yacht Club: $5 Off Canoe or Kayak Rental (Ex 7/31/11)
Jefferson's, Jacksonville: Free Fried Dill Pickle Appetizer, dine-in only with purchase of a meal (Ex 8/31/11)
Executive Detail Shop: Wed: Ladies Day $5 Off any service. Truck, SUV $75
Fabricrafts: 10% Off Merchandise (Ex 7/16/11)
WEDNESDAY’S LIST . . . of beans ’n greens ’n other things:
DON’T TELL me I’ve nothing to do.
From the window of my barn I see Ozzie coming through the hedgerow from next door. I like Ozzie a lot, but I’m not sure he feels the same. Efforts to pet and feed over the years have been a flop at best.
What Ozzie likes to do is hunt. I mean really hunt.
You see, Ozzie is a brindle, bob-tailed, three-legged cat and he loves to feed on whatever he can find in the hedgerow across my back yard, including field mice and squirrels.
Ozzie is flat out deadly, too.
Since losing his right front leg to a tumor a couple of years back, he has taught himself a new way to hunt. He keeps stalking to a minimum. But with the patience of Job, he settles down and waits for a meal to come within striking distance.
When the meal does, it’s “Wham” and Ozzie heads for the dinner table.
He’s a wonder to watch ...
IT IS A typical day at the Smith Estate. I am out in my barn kicked back in what I call “Archie’s Recliner.” I am reading a book, listening to Merle Haggard on the stereo, and watching TV (how’s that for multi-tasking, huh?) The blonde is out and about.
The phone rings. It is from the blonde. She is at Sears in the Quintard Mall ...
“Sweetheart, I’m at Sears looking at vacuum cleaners. I can get a small one to go with a regular one. What do you think I should do?”
Recovering from the shock of her asking my permission for anything, I agree to the double dip and then make a mistake with “What’s going on, you asking my permission?”
From the other end, there is a happy laugh with:
“It’d be different if it were shoes and a dress.”
I managed a quiet goodbye (without choking), hung up, and went back to singing along with Merle. It seemed fitting he was in the middle of “I’m Gonna Sit Right Here And Drink” at the time.
JOE ESTEP deserves a standing ovation. Joe runs the Calhoun County Sports Hall of Fame and, this past Saturday night, put together another classic.
Held at the “new” Oxford Civic Center, the 2013 induction played to a near packed house.
Outstanding Joe, outstanding.
FOR THOSE asking, the Peach Man’s tomatoes are a week away, but Ken Easterling will be at Regions in Oxford on Friday morning at 6 with another load of Chilton County peaches.
If no sell-out in Oxford he heads for the Anniston post office along about 8 . . . but don’t bet he gets there.
IF YOU’RE lining up at the Walmart deli at Lenlock, I hope you get lucky and a young lady by the name of Vanesa Durham waits on you. She did for me a few days back and while I’ve had an unpleasant moment or two there, Vanesa left me feeling pretty good.
Walmart could use more like her.
BIRTHDAYS: June 12 – Annette Vice; June 14 – Sage Snow; June 15 – Twins Brettnie and Dakota Smith; June 17 – Aiden Lloyd; 11; June 18 – Don Beabout.
And Jeff Jones, June 17. A member of a vanishing breed (The Great Generation), Jeff drove a “weasel” jeep ashore at Normandy, June 6, 1944.
QUOTABLE: “My doctor tells me I should start slowing it down - but there are more old drunks than there are old doctors so let's all have another round.”
Thanks for visiting ...
George Smith may be reached at 256-239-5286 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.