Since we hope to move soon, it is inevitable that our monthly mortgage payments are going to increase significantly, which has led J and I to have the "what can we do to save more money?" conversation yet again. Don't get me wrong, I'm all about saving money any way I can, but the conversation gets a little old. And, here's the thing -- since I'm the one that does the grocery, clothes, and household goods shopping, I kind of feel like this burden falls mostly on my shoulders. J, of course, disagrees and offers to do what he can to help out, but I do take my "job" very seriously and am a little bit of a control freak when it comes to how we spend/save.
*Not sure if any of this is making sense, but I'll just keep on rambling.*
Sooo...I'm jumping back on the coupon bandwagon. For a while there I was a couponing machine. Sundays were filled with clipping/comparing/organizing. It's tiring. And boring. Needless to say, I fell off the bandwagon after a little while. It just became too much and I was wondering really how much I was saving. (Side note: we almost always use some type of coupon when eating out or really try to take advantage of "kids eat free" days. ) I have a couple of issues with coupons:
1. Organizing. I have a coupon file and organize them by foods, personal products, household products, baby goods, etc. You get the idea. However, the minute I get in the store I still feel like a disorganized mess. I have my list, my pen, my coupons, and usually a child or two. It just seems easier to get what I need and get out. Ya know?
2. I wonder if I end up buying things I wouldn't normally buy just because I have a coupon for a certain item. I'd say I'm fairly organized when it comes to meal planning. Generally, the day I am going to go to the store I plan out about a week and a half worth of meals. This usually lasts us two weeks since we have the occasional meal out or at our parent's. In addition, I find myself running to the store once or twice a week for milk, forgotten items or other things. So, the question is...do I plan meals based on the coupons I have? Or, do I plan the meals, then see which coupons I can use? All of this makes my head spin.
3. I have nothing against buying generic. There are just a few items that I won't go generic on -- peanut butter and diapers just to name a couple. Almost all coupons are for name brand items and when I compare prices on name brand items + a coupon, with the prices on generic items, the generic item almost always wins....making my coupon collection a futile effort.
4. Finally, a LOT of coupons read, for example, "$.50 off when you buy 2 packages of ____." Most of the time I don't need 2 packages. Nor do I want 2 packages. Nor do I have cubboard room for 2 packages. Get the idea?
So, my question for you, blogging buddies, follow mommies/wives/household CEOs...how the heck do you "do" coupons, save money, and keep your sanity?