Wow! I actually completed a QOTW on the day it came out! Go me!! Let’s hope I can keep up from now on. 🙂
How do you save money at the grocery store? What are your best tips and tricks?
I have always been a thrifty grocery shopper. I hate buying things that aren’t on sale and I stock up on the canned goods or frozen stuff if it is on sale. Olives, artichokes, fruit cocktail… I can usually get olives and artichokes 4 for $5 – I think that’s a good deal and I don’t hesitate to get the store brand, and so I stock up. Fruit Cocktails (Del Monte brand only), I prefer to buy in the largest can I can get (30oz) and on a good sale, which would be like $2 per can.
I always have my phone with me and thus a very handy dandy calculator. If something is on sale and a smaller can/box/whatever of it is not – I’ll do a little math and figure out which is the best deal. Just recently, it was cheaper per egg to buy two seperate dozens instead of one 24-pack. Make sense?
Since becoming a MoM, I’ve become especially diligent about using coupons. I have a coupon file that it labeled in categories like: breakfast & bread, baking & condiments, fresh, dairy, drinks, frozen, snacks, health & cleaning (soap, shampoo, lysol, etc)… oh a few more categories but I can’t think of them at the moment and I’m not going to go dig out my coupon file from my purse. It makes me happy to know that I’m saving money – even when it’s just a few dollars total. I feel that as a SAHM I have some sort of responsibility to save my family money when & where I can. I hardly ever take advantage of double coupons (the policy is somewhat confusing to me AND I rarely have coupons for under 40 cents).
We feed our daughters a lot of organic food. We’re not 100% organic but it’s been pretty important to us to make sure that they get organic milk, meat, and processed foods (like “goldfish” or “penguin bars” <- I can’t think of the brand but we get them at Whole Foods and they have a penguin on them.) Organic fruits and veggies, we only buy if it’s a good deal. We haven’t had a lot of coupons for organic stuff so if it’s on sale, I stock up. Also, I don’t know if other grocery stores offer this but Whole Foods offers a 10% discount if you buy a case. So… when buying Macaroni & Cheese, Applesauce, or Raviolis (things that I KNOW we will use up by the expiration date) I buy it in a case. The three I mentioned come 12 to a case – so it’s not like I have a crate full of boxed/canned food. I always wait until it’s on sale and then I’m saving even more money. What a deal!!
Finally, Sam’s Club/Costco whatever the warehouse store around you is… get a membership. It’s worth the upfront $35 membership. Diapers, Paper Towel, Toilet Paper – I mean, those three items alone – these are things you will continually need. It drives me crazy when I see people buying like a 12 pack of toilet paper. I mean… hello? I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that you’re probably going to use all that up and then need more. Why not buy a huge bulk thing of toilet paper and find somewhere to store it in your house. It can’t take up THAT much room. And unless you die, you’re gonna use it – I promise. Garbage bags, Ziplock bags, too. It’s worth buying these things in bulk because you will definitely be using them and they won’t go to waste. Like most other parents of multiples, we have spent a lot of time pricing out the different stores as far as diapers. Sam’s (although I’m sure Costco is similar, we just happen to belong to Sam’s – for now at least. I’ve heard Cosco has a lot of Organic stuff – is this true, people? I need answers!! haha) Sam’s has the best price per diaper than other stores (Target, Babies-R-Us, Walmart, etc). I think that’s even using coupons. This is for Huggies, the only brand we use for diapers and wipes. With three in diapers, there is no question that we save money by purchasing our diapers from there.
So My Best Tips?
– Stock up if something is on sale. If you know you’re gonna eat this stuff and need more in a few weeks, purchase it now and save yourself a few cents.
– Coupons. The 21-year-old I used to be would never have been caught dead using a COUPON. Now, I live for my weekly coupon mailer. What was I thinking? I could have saved so much money back in the day.
– Find out your store policy on buying in bulk – do they offer a discount like Whole Foods does on case purchases? If so, take advantage of it.
– Sam’s Club, Costco, etc. Take advantage of the savings and buy the necessities (garbage bags, toilet paper, paper towels, etc) in bulk. If you can’t store all the rolls – see if a friend wants to split the cost with you. I’m sure they use toilet paper, too!
Good luck! Save money!! You’ll thank yourself when the kids are on their own and you can use your hard-saved money for something fun, like a real vacation which you’ll need after raising all those multiples! 🙂