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Moms on a Budget….An Awesome Grocery tip or two.

While we are paying down debt we are aware that we need to keep a tight reign on what we spend….even so when its on food.  Groceries can be a huge way to make or break a budget.  A Great way to save is to buy food from the grocery store that you actually like and eat out very little.  Now, as a mom, I love to eat out; I don’t cook or have to clean the kitchen afterwards.  So I know how hard it is to stick to that plan.  But in order for us to reach this very attainable goal of being debt free, we can and will stick to it. Hey we have cheat days…we have to have those. hehe.  We stick to 3 places to shop the majority of our groceries….Costco, Target, and Walmart.

Costco is not only a great place to go to get full on samples (great when having a picky eater that seems to think that there is better food at Costco than at home hehe), but it’s also a great place to save on fruits, veggies, meat, eggs, and most everyday items.  We buy the majority of our groceries here.  When shopping here we always, always, look to see what the coupons are.  Costco doesn’t accept Manufactured coupons but they offer, every month, their own coupons.  We have saved so much on coffee, cereals, snacks, household items, etc.  Because the fruits and veggies are in bulk, they go bad quicker than most regular size families can eat them so it’s not a bad idea to go halfsies with someone.  That way you can get the fruits and veggies you want without seeing them die in your fridge because they weren’t eaten quickly enough.

I don’t much care for fresh meat to be frozen so we usually buy a couple days worth of meat at a time.  So when we are at Costco we buy only one type of fresh protein.  At home, for example, we eat let’s say chicken for 3 days in a row.  We totally have to find ways to change things up so we don’t think we are eating the same meal every night.  Ha!  For salad we also buy spinach because we know that if it’s almost that time where it’s seeming to start to go bad, it’s time to place it in the skillet and make some sort of stir fry or creamed spinach or even put it in soups or cooked meats.  Romaine and iceberg lettuce don’t allow for the same options.  When their bad, their bad and there’s no salvaging it.

Target has some great ways to save.  They offer coupons and have an app for your phone which gives additional savings as well.  The coupons are at the target website and can be chosen and printed off.  The target app is called Cartwheel and paired with the weekly ad and the printed coupons can save some big money.  Every Sunday target comes up with their new target ads and based on what we need I adjust where we shop based on the three savings here.

Target has a markdown schedule that’s pretty easy to follow as well.   It varies by store but our local stores seem to follow these markdown rules pretty well.  Depending on what you need, it’s a great way to save.  Here is the schedule. ..

Target Markdown Schedule 2

These markdowns happen approximately 2 weeks and offer discounts of 15/30/50/70%.  I’ve also seen 80% off as well.   At Holiday time this sequence of discounts happen every 2 days.

One more thing about Target : hehe.   The tags here tell you if they will be discounted again. …Cool huh!  So if the clearance red price ends in .06 cents or .08 cents this item will be discounted again.    If the price ends in .04 cents that’s all it will clearance down to. However, for a busy momma, I tend to buy it when I see it.

Walmart is a great place to buy as well.  Like target they offer coupons that can be printed from their website.  Walmart has an app as well but it isn’t a coupon app.  It’s more of a get your savings after the fact app.  The app for your phone is called Savings Catcher.  It checks a certain amount of competitive stores and if their are cheaper prices elsewhere they give you the difference in an In-App giftcard.  Not a bad idea but I like to know what I am saving before I get there.  So I don’t shop this way often.  It’s not a bad idea, I’ve just not used it much.

To sum up the fun it’ important to:

  1. Figure out your basic foods; meat, veggies, fruit, cereals, that you actually like.
  2. Review and think about which stores you buy those certain things (Example: do you buy meat at Walmart? or Safeway? or Costco?)
  3. Look at weekly ads if available
  4. See if their are any coupons or Apps that give additional savings.
  5. Print your coupons/bring your phone
  6. Eat at home and keep your money. Ha!

We can do this!!!  I’d love to hear your tips too.  I am all about saving money.  It doesn’t have to be hard to do.  Just find what is best for you and stick with it.  You can do it too!

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