Is It Always About Money?…

I’m pretty cheap most of the time … well maybe I should rephrase and call myself frugal.

I think it is how I was raised and a recent relation with the economy.  Money has always been something you were told to hold on to.  Save where you can.  Spend only if you have to.  My grandmother used to say, “Pad that bank account sweetie.”  What in the world.  Who says that to a 16 year old.  I guess she did.

I started thinking the other day about saving the all mighty dollar.  Is it always about money? Does it always have to be about saving it?

Here is an example:

I used to coupon much more frequently than I do now.  It was like a game for me, “How much did I save this week?”  What I didn’t realize was I ended up spending money to save money.  I bought stuff I normally wouldn’t buy just because I could get it for $0.25 or $0.50. When I started throwing away these “awesome deals” I realized I needed to take a break from the game.

Another example:

I would drive all over town just to save $1 or $2 on a few items that were on sale {grocery speaking}.  I’m pretty sure I ate up that dollar in gas.

And lastly:

Americans are tight little people these days.  We are wound up tight and we hold tight to our money.  One area where I think we should let go is vacations.  We don’t take enough vacations according to study after study.  We also tend to look for the cheapest way to vacation.  How about this, if you really want to go to {insert location} then set a goal and make it happen.  Raymond wants to visit Disney World for our next vacation and go all-inclusive.  My cheapiness would normally balk at this, but I’m actually all in.  Yes we will need to do some planning, but I’m looking forward to an amazing vacation where I’m not asking what the drink special is or eating at McDonalds to save a little cash.

Now — your turn.  Thoughts? Feedback?

Disclaimer: I’m not saying you should spend frivolously either.

Until next time…

Goodbye Coupon Chaos…

I have another surprise in store for you today…dont you just love Monday surprises!  Another guest blogger! 🙂  I asked my very dear friend, Lauren Nix, if she would guest blog for me today…the topic is coupons.  Lauren is a whiz at couponing and finding deals.  Im not too bad myself, but she is much better than I! Since our economy decided to take a dip in the cool money pool a few years back, coupons have become hot and popular again.  They take time and effort to keep track of sales and deals, but can save you money in the long run.  Therefore, I dont mind spending some quality time with my paper and coupon organizer to save hard earned dollars in the end!

Thank you Lauren!  Be sure to check out her blog too! 🙂

GOODBYE COUPON CHAOS

I absolutely LOOOOOOVE couponing.  I’ve been an avid couponer for almost 4 years and can’t imagine a “full price” kinda life.  I often sit back and try to imagine what my life, and bank account, would be like without coupons.
I’ve been asked by many of my friends & family, “How do you keep up with ALL of your coupons?”  Honestly, after almost 4 years, it’s like second nature.  Once you get a good niche for how you want your coupons organized, it just flows.  There are several great methods of keeping your coupons organized and contained. Here are a few of those examples…
– The binder system.  Starting with a large three ring binder insert plastic baseball card display sheets (found at your local Walmart).  Insert your coupons into the display sheets, facing outward so you can see your coupon.  It is completely up to you how your coupons are filed; alphabetical order in each pocket, or create sections by area of the market, i.e., Health & Beauty, Frozen, Baby, Paper goods, etc.  You may want to insert some dividers in front of each section…a little extra organization.  Your binder will grow quickly, so be prepared.  I’ve actually witnessed ladies in my local grocery store with 2 binders.  One specifically for food and the other for non-food.  This normally depends on the size of your family and how long you have been couponing.
– The coupon box.  You will need a toteable box with lid.  Cut small cardboard dividers and insert your coupons behind each category.  Or use labeled envelopes to house your coupons and file in the same manner inside of the tote.  You may want to break your categories down into subcategories.  For example: Baby (being the main category) with subcategories of diapers, wipes, food, other products.  Again, this will completely depend on the size of your family, your length of couponing, and your organization comfort level
– Whole insert method.  This is my personal fav.  I have an accordion file folder with 12 sections, one for each month.  Every Sunday, I sit down and write the date on the front of each insert and place in the correct month’s slot, newest first.  This works for me because I do not have a significant amount of time to sit down each Sunday and cut EVERY coupon out of the paper.  Also, most of your couponing blogs post from which insert (whether it is SmartSource, Red Plum, or P&G) and what date they pulled the coupon.  Thus, making it super easy for me to pull the insert from that month’s tab and match my deal.  I just LOVE those fantastic ladies who do all of the leg work in finding these phenomenal deals
For example:
All Almay Eye Cosmetics $5.99
-$2 off Almay cosmetic product, SS 1/01
You will come to find your own fabulous way to organize your coupons, but hopefully these ideas have possibly sparked an interest in getting your’s together or given you an idea on how to tweak your own method.
How do you organize your coupons?  Are you happy with your method?  I’m always open to suggestions on how to be a better couponer 🙂