Thursday, August 19, 2010

Is it Just Me?....

.....or does anyone else think that the Coupon inserts for the last 3 months or so have been one big SNOOZE?

Not only are the values pretty low on most coupons but there are NOT a lot of coupons for food!  9 out of 10 coupons are for HBA or other non-food products.  And most of the food coupons are for junk food!  Well, there is ALWAYS a high proportion of junk coupons anyway....

Or is it just that manufacturers hate my region of the country and won't give us useful coupons in worthwhile denominations?  (Except for those toothpaste coupons which we always get tons of and for large amounts....)

Or am I just a whiney, unsatisfied, bored woman who enjoys complaining? lol

This time last year I was in my glory with the awesome sales and multiple catalinas at Acme(though I did have to travel a piece to get to an Acme)....

What I got at Acme in 1 week last August...the refrigerated stuff(milk, yogurt, etc) isn't pictured.  $58.81 OOP(most of that OOP was for the 1st order before I had Cats to roll)for $1,014.91 worth of food and toiletries.

And here's just 1 WEEK of my haul during the multiple Double Coupon Events at Kmart last year.
From Aug. 16-22.....

Total spent $16.86 OOP for $585.50 worth of items.  And that's not counting various manufacturer's rebates, free movie tickets, etc. I earned.  I logged a lot of hours inside my local KMarts last year....this year I think I've been there twice to buy clothes for assorted kids and haven't used a single coupon there.

Of course, some of the products I bought last year we've since sworn off Pop-Tarts, paper plates, pudding cups, house fragrance thingys, energy drinks, etc. so if I was to redo these trips there would be less bought.

I look at these photos and get nostalgic for the hunt & the thrill.....who says frugality is dull?

And then I remember how tired I was after those weeks were over and I get an overwhelming urge to go nap!lol

Last year was all about multiple large trips concentrated into 1 week.   The Acme trips were made in 2 days, going through the register up to 9 times in a was truly a full day's worth of work planning and executing.  The KMart trips were spread out over a week's time for each Coupon Event Sale, but I'd make 2 or 3 smaller trips a day and sometimes hit multiple stores in 1 day.  Both methods were tiring and intense, but after the 2 days or the week of trips I could go for weeks and months without shopping(besides picking up a few necessities during any given week).
If I had to label it, last year was the "Year of Manic/Depressive type of Shopping".   Immense hauls in a short period and then no shopping for long stretches in between....if you don't count

This year has been about more frequent very small shopping trips for deals and catalinas.  My local stores haven't had anything approaching Acme or KMart deals of last year, nor has Acme or KMart. These little shops haven't been as lucrative as the mega-shops or as exciting, but they also haven't worn me out or taken the hours of strategic planning(=hours out of my day)either.
Weis would run 1 or 2 Cats with some things I wanted(ketchup or cooking oil or dog food, etc.) but usually there were no good coupons to pair with the Cats(or the Coupons would come out the week AFTER the Cat deal) so you would still have sizable OOP even after rolling the Cat a few times....thus higher OOP, so you don't stock up on as much.
You'd still get a deal but not as good as those megas of last year.

Since I have a stockpile, I guess I'd be happy with the type of shopping of this year(smaller hauls and a bit more OOP) as long as a big honking MEGA haul opportunity rolls around 2 times a year to augment my usual shopping.

So what do you prefer? 
Those large shopportunities spread out over the course of a year or smaller cat deals more frequently during the shopping year?

What have your shopping habits been like this year?
Have they changed since last year?
What kind of deals would you like to see that you don't?
If you use coupons, are you using more or less than you did last year?
Are you buying different products from what you bought last year or about the same?

Can you tell I am bored and avoiding doing what I should be doing today?lol



  1. I think you are bored and trying to avoid doing something else. LOL!

    I agree that the deals just don't seem as good as they have in previous years. But, have also stopped buying some things. Like Toaster Strudel and Pop Tarts. Used to love them...oh and had kids at home....but got totally burned out, so don't buy either, even if they are free.

    I do not shop like you at all. I make one trip per week to Kroger and one each to CVS and Walgreens when there is an exceptional deal. I just don't have time for multiple trips. Or maybe I just don't want to take the time.

    We manage to maintain our stock, so I am happy.

  2. Hi,
    I did a whole bunch of shopping early in the year, but have not visited one chain store after I came back from vacation 2 weeks ago and I am totally fine with it.
    I think that is what I am going to do from now on since all the high value coupons come out in the New year. I havent even restarted my paper subscription yet, since there is nothing except food that I need now for almost another 4 - 6 months at least.

  3. I have been very disappointed in coupons lately. But I guess it's OK because I also have a stockpile. I've also been too busy to spend the time.

    I am HATING that there are so many dollar $1/2 coupons -- for one, that's not such a great deal, and it stinks that they don't get doubled.

    I do keep wishing we'd have a big rain storm one of these nights so I could rationalize spending some time coupons shopping in the supermarket. Now, it's not worth the time for such paltry results.

  4. I agree...I miss my stockpile and was hoping to grow it this spring and summer, but was not able to do that. They better wise up with the inserts and sales this winter.

  5. "I look at these photos and get nostalgic for the hunt & the thrill.....who says frugality is dull?"LOL! Only a true couponer would look at old pictures of stuff! The force is strong with this one.

  6. I agree about the food coupons this year. Last summer, I was making out big time with free Starbucks ice cream, free bottles of BBQ sauce, free mustard, etc. And while I'm not totally missing out on free stuff this year, most of it is coming from Internet printed coupons NOT from the inserts.

    I do think our part of the country is not getting good inserts, esp since this last week - for ex - I had to buy the $3/1 Purex and $3/1 L'Oreal coupons from a clipping service because they weren't anywhere in our inserts. Not that those are for food, but I rarely cut anything out of the inserts anymore...

    I did a lot more shopping last year because I was just starting the game and beginning my stockpile. Now that I have more (insert bath/toiletry/cleaning item here) than we'll EVER use, it's actually harder to come up with reasons to do the deals, and while that technically saves me in OOP, it sort of makes me sad, too. That whole "thrill of the hunt" thing - LOL!

  7. Frances--If what you are doing is working then more power to ya! ;-)

    Chitra--Thanks for coming to see me! And you are right...the high value glut does seem to come at the 1st of the year.

    AlexM--I'm with you....why bother for so little savings. Better to spend your time when the weather is nice to be doing something outside.

    McVal--Is that a good wow, a bad wow or an "I can't believe what you do to save money!" wow?lol

    Amiyrah--Thanks for coming to see me. I think you're right. ShopRite did seem to run some better sales tho than the Weis chain here...too bad I couldn't get off my butt to hike that far out to get to

    SonyaAnn--Am I a total coupon geek because of this?lolol Yes, she learn-ed it well, she did. Only you would turn me into

    Pretty--I'm glad someone else misses the thrill of the hunt and it's not just ME!lol
    And now that you mention it, I have by FAR used more IP Qs than insert Qs this year.....what's up with that!?!?
    We didn't get the L'Oreal or Purex Qs either so I am not even bothering to hit Rite-Aid this week since I don't have any +Ups expiring this week. bleh


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