Monday, December 22, 2008

Anti-Coupon Moms

{I've dubbed us the 'Anti-Coupon Moms' because we're going to put a new face on this 'hobby' of sorts. Or at least Molly is- my face is}
This morning Molly and I went out early to hit a great sale at CVS. It was only a two-day sale, and it started yesterday, so by the time we got there at 8:30 am the other local coupon ladies had cleaned out most of the good stuff. And when I say 'good', I mean 'FREE.' See, CVS has this little promotion dealie where they give you "extra care bucks" for certain items that change with their weekly specials. ECBs are essentially store credits printed from the register like coupons, and when combined with manufacturer coupons you can actually make money. So you pay a little out of pocket to begin with, then you just continue to 'roll' your points to buy new things each week, so you shouldn't have to pay much or anything out of pocket if you choose the right things. Since I'm just starting out, I had a bit to pay out of pocket, but as you will see the benefits are clearly worth it.
(This SP is a testament to my new found love of couponing- Molly always looks great. Always. She is lithe and thin, with clear skin, a great smile and flat (in a good way) hair. Anything looks good on her, and she always looks put together and refined. Then there's me. I look good if I am at an appropriately thin weight (which I am not), have carefully applied hair and makeup and am shot from just the right angle with forewarning to pose for the camera. Sigh. I hate to be the fat friend, but that's just the way it is right now. I feel like telling people, 'I haven't always looked like this! I have problems! I'm aware and I'm going to fix it...sometime.' But I digress.)
Okay, I had some ECBs to start with, about $19 worth that I put towards my purchases. We made 2 trips to CVS, and one to Walgreen's and this was the loot:
I paid out-of-pocket ('oop') : $40.13. Amount I got back in store credits to both stores: $43.54.
I saved: $108.67.
Let me break that down for you in case it's not clear. Essentially, they paid me $3.41 to take all this stuff off their hands.
What I bought:
2 bottles of Listerine
1 Rightguard Clinical Strength deodorant
1 Coke Zero
1 Clorox Green Works bathroom cleaner
1 Clorox Green Works cleaner
1 bag of Hershey's Kisses
1 bag of York Peppermint Patties
1 bag of Rolos
2 bags of Russel Stover chocolates
1 Maybelline liquid foundation
1 box of Russel Stover chocolates
1 package of Hello Kitty band-aids
1 package of Hall's NAturals throat lozenges
2 Sally Hansen nail polishes
1 pack of BeneFiber drink mixes
2 boxes of Granola bars
1 Gillette Fusion razor with shower gel and shave gel
1 ConAir hair dryer
1 20-count Excedrin Gels
1 Loreal eyeshadow duo
1 bottle Complete contact solution.

Whew! This is good stuff.
Every time I coupon I learn something about it to change or tweak for the next time. For instance: this time there were about 3 coupons I threw away because I thought, 'I will never use that, even if someone gives it to me.' What I failed to realize is that they can still make me money. Example: I threw away a coupon for Sleepinal, a sleep-aid. It was on sale for free at CVS, and with my $1 coupon, it would have deducted that from the rest of my total, so it would essentially just be $1 off my purchase, beyond the sleeping pills! Does that make sense? I could've just sent the pills to my dad and I would've made a buck! This happened with about 3 different things today, so my lesson learned is keep every coupon. They could be worth $1 each or more.
I derive an inordinate amount of pleasure from doing my little scavenger hunts matching up deals, sales, and coupons. I will have to start being more aggressive with the shopping and get there early!


Jill said...

I find this whole process rather mind blowing. How do the cashiers respond? Have they seen it all before or are they confused when they hand you money back with your bags of stuff?

Diana said...

I am happy to finally see Molly after hearing so much about her. I am so glad you have her.
I too am impressed and confused at the giving money back.

Diana said...

oh and you look very good and pretty like always in that SP :)

rmt said...

Looks like you found some amazing deals! Good for you!
And I think you look great. Don't be so hard on yourself!

Denise said...

This idea fascinates me! I clip coupons, but have never heard of such a coupon game as the one you describe. Sounds like fun!

michelle said...

I like your new moniker. You two look like the ones to turn the image of the coupon game around.

Maybe, just maybe, I could do this if you were around to do it with me!

(I hate being the fat friend as well. Hate it.)

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