A few weeks ago, when I was talking about my goals for the early part of summer, I mentioned that I wanted to start couponing. I've been at it for a few weeks now, and although I'm certainly not an expert, I've learned a lot. It's getting addicting fast! Every experienced couponer I talked to told me it would take a few weeks for the savings to start kicking in, and this week I really started to notice a difference.
I found the local paper with the best coupons, and I buy two papers a week. I also have 7 or 8 friends and coworkers who are saving their coupons for me. I'm checking out coupon sites weekly. I'm making detailed shopping lists and carrying around envelopes with dozens of paper-clipped coupons. My kids are even checking food packages for coupons before they throw them away. It's becoming a way of life for our whole family.
My stockpile is growing. I only plan to have a 3-6 month stockpile, not the 3 year ones that you see on Extreme Couponing. So far I've stockpiled basics that I didn't pay a dime for after coupons, such as laundry detergent, pasta, floss, and toothpaste. I've also got a huge stash of cereal that I got really cheap. I'm learning what rock bottom prices are and when to buy stuff.
I'm so glad I decided to start this! It's work, and it's overwhelming at first, but when you see your total at Kroger drop from $80 to $25 on one trip, it's worth it. When you see your weekly budget stretching further and further, it's worth the extra effort.