Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Green Groceries on a Budget

So, I realized that I forgot to fill you in on our awesome grocery adventure this past Saturday.

As I've mentioned before, we use the Grocery Game, which helps us tremendously in matching up sales and coupons. This allows us to save the most, while still getting the products we need. The Grocery Game tracks the store sales, which are typically cyclical (they run in trends of about 8-12 weeks), so we have to stockpile a little in order to have what we need when we need it and save the most.

This past weekend was Super Double Coupons at Harris Teeter, so that means that they doubled coupons up to $1.98, not just their general doubling of $0.99 coupons. So, we hauled our our coupons that were over 99 cents and looked at the list and laid out our plans for the trip. We mostly bought things that were on the list, but there were a few things, like pistachios (they've been a great healthy snack this week) and Seventh Generation products (like toilet paper) that we had coupons for that we printed off the internet or had from other sources that weren't in the list. So, we used those too, knowing that we'd still get a pretty good savings. The extra savings we had from super doubled coupons allowed us to purchase the organic products that we wanted for the week, like milk and some organic produce.

Speaking of organic, here's my basic philosophy on organic produce... it's worth buying organic when you can for the veggies/fruits you're not going to peel. So, I'll spring for organic cabbage, peppers, tomatoes, berries (but not once we have our raspberries and blueberries planted), etc. because they're most likely to have herbicide/pesticide residues on them that won't wash off completely. However, I don't buy organic citrus fruits, onions, bananas, etc. because the area that has the most of these chemicals is coming off anyway. With milk, I try to buy organic because I don't like the idea of all the hormones that the cows are fed/injected with leeching into my milk.

So, back to the savings. Because of the Grocery Game list, we were able to get five boxes of whole grain pasta for 60 cents each. (All the pastas of that brand were on sale, buy two get three free, but we opted for the whole grain--which we finally found way down on the bottom shelf.) We also bought a TON of yogurt (Yoplait--not organic, bummer on that, but it's really good) because with our coupons that we'd stocked up on, it was 37 cents a carton, over half of the original price. We were missing a few coupons on the list, because we'd missed getting a paper that week (by the way, the cheapest Sunday paper in Boone is at the Dollar Tree, but they go fast, so we get ours before church if we can), so we missed out on a few good freebies. We were able to score some Seventh Generation baby wipes for about half the original price with our online coupon.

All in all, even with our organic purchases and produce that wasn't on the GG list, we were able to save over $60 and spent around $58. A little over 50% savings wasn't too bad, I don't think... although there have been weeks we've seen a 70% savings.

So, what about you? What are your great savings stories? Where do you find the best deals? Please dish... you know how we love a great deal!

Sharin' the green love and savings!

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