Friday, November 11, 2011

Organizing My Coupons

Well, it's been more than a few days, but life is what it is. So, I promised a post on my couponing obsession. I should state that I used to coupon with great regularity but got out of it due to location and all that. (read also:laziness) Anyhow, so in a way I'm a little new to the idea. Plus when I used to coupon I did it on a small scale. It's important to know the coupon policies of all the stores where you plan to use your coupons. For instance, Walmart will only let you use forty without manager permission and I have a store near me (Woods) that will not take internet coupons. This is important to know when you are on a mission and have a handful of coupons and a long list. Better to know before you get in line with a full cart.

I start by buying between four and ten papers a Sunday. I get a preview of the inserts in my email box so I usually know how many I'm going to want. It also depends on how many they have at the store and if I remembered to pick up quarters. Meh. I put like insert pages together and cut them all at once, usually. If I buy a bunch, this doesn't work as well because the pages get wonky during cutting and you can cut off the bar codes. Ask me how I know. Anyhow, it doesn't take that much more time to break them up and do three or four pages at a time.

I spend a lot of time over at MoneySavingMom (and you can follow her on Facebook. Very useful) and looked through all of her coupony goodness. She uses the coupon box. It's cheaper and only costs five dollars to start, so that's where I started. The coupons are kept in alphabetical envelopes with an index cart to state the category. This is fine, but a bit of a pain if you are in the store and you see an unplanned deal and you think you have that coupon, but have to look. Now, do it with a toddler, a five year old and whatever else kid (or husband) that you had to lug out with you. No fun and easy to make a mess. I used this method for about a month. Last week, I changed it.

So now I'm doing the ever popular binder method. I use a zippy trapper-keeper-thingy (although they aren't called that anymore and if you say it within ear distance of anyone in public they look at you like you have eight heads) and those sheets that kids use when collecting baseball cards. Sometimes I have to skim down the sides of my coupons to get them to fit, but it works. Just yesterday I had the perfect chance to use my binder to its full capacity. I was in the store and had to thumb through it, easy peasy. I think I'm in love!

I also bought those stick on label tabs. I love, love, love those deals. Post It is amazing. lol This also feeds my Queen of the Organized side. I'm not a hundred percent done putting my binder together, but here you can see my tabs. The yellow tabs are non-food items, in alphabetical order. Food will be blue and red, although I haven't exactly decided if it will be mix and match or a method to the madness. It's easy to thumb through, easy to carry and very easy to use. I was also using dry erase markers to write the expiration date on the front of the pocket for that coupon, but I'm not a hundred percent on that either.

Well, this is what I have, for now. Later we can talk about using the coupons and other such goodness. For today, there is lots to do here at home so I must go.

1 comment:

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