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Hey Ya'll I'm Rachel I'm a "Southern Girl" with a passion for writing, cooking, crafting and running. Three of the most important things in my life are my, handsome guitar playing, husband Stephan our hilarious genius child Ephraim Brite and our beautiful girl Wren Eisley Take a look around and get to know me!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Taking the plunge...

Tuesday at the Nichols home is grocery day.
It is one of my favorite days of the week. Silly I know...
I love that we shop together as a family, I love meal planning, I love watching how much money I have saved, add up at the register. 
Speaking of money saving...
Before E was born I was getting pretty good at the whole couponing thing. Stephan and I would sit down and make a grocery list based off only the things on sale and that we had {or could get} coupons for. We did great and stuck to a budget of about $200 a month. We always had a stock pile of cereal, pop-tarts, canned veggies {to use for homemade sauces and such}, and condiments. Once E came along it became harder for me to take a few hours out of my time with him to plan a list solely based off the sale items. Our grocery budget went from $200 a month to $300 a month.
  {we grocery shop every two weeks btw, I recommend it!}
Upping the budget was a must especially after Ephraim decided he was over the whole breast feeding thing at 4 months. We had nasty expensive soy formula to buy and Stephan also wanted to start taking his lunch to work.
When couponing we always shopped at Publix. I love their coupon policy, especially at the one I shop because we have a super Target and they accept those coupons. 

Lately, I have been going over our grocery budget by about $60 a month {give or take $10}. To most people that wouldn't seem like a lot but when you have a tight budget your try to adhere to, $60 extra per month is a lot. 
A few days before we left on our beach trip, we went to Walmart to buy a car dvd player. I HATE Walmart. {Or at least the Trussville Alabama Walmart}. Our Walmart is where all the gangs hang out, and every time I go in there I see moms or dads sitting outside the door smoking right in the face of their infant. {I won't get into how much that pisses me off} I also come across people I cant understand, for the life of me, because they are so redneck or only have 5 teeth. I always leave there feeling like I need a shower. 
While we were there I needed to pick up shampoo, I'd forgotten at Publix. The jumbo bottle of pantine that we use was $4.00 {regular everyday price at Walmart} and I paid $5.00 for the bottle {on sale} at Publix a month ago... I also realized that their cereals and pop-tarts were almost $1.00 a box cheaper. I have never been a huge fan of Walmart's coupon policy but after seeing how much lower their everyday price is, Today, we are taking the plunge and shopping at Walmart. 
Yes, I will most likely be scared for my life, want to slap a person for smoking within inches of their child, and I will come straight home and take a shower, but it's all worth it to save us money right?!


  1. Ugh. Walmart makes me feel dirty too! Sounds like we shop a lot alike! I usually do Publix too, but lately we've needed to go to Walmart for some random things too that we can't get anywhere else as cheap!! Food is definitely cheaper there on a regular basis! Totally understand just wanting to shop there! If you have time though, I'd still consider shopping Publix for just the good sale/coupon items! Then getting staples you have to have that week at Walmart! A bogo deal at Publix with a coupon will always beat a Walmart price! I'm guessing you probably use blogs for matchups at Publix and Walmart? Iheartpublix.com is what I use every week, if you haven't used that one! It's specific to Publix-obviously-so its really detailed! It IS work to use coupons. I've had to give up a time or two and just shop at Walmart when life gets too busy! Before Mellie, I shopped at every drugstore and several grocery stores to get all the freebies and had a huge stockpile! As you know, that'd be no fun with kids in tow!! :) Now its only Publix or another store occasionally if there is a good diaper deal somewhere! Our Kroger is cheaper, but I despise our local store and will just go to Publix since its next door! Walmart is further away so I definitely have to be out of time to find coupons to head that way! I also use Aldi for milk, eggs, and produce when I can. It'll eat up a lot of our budget but I get a lot for the $ since I get all healthy stuff!

    I have a feeling I'll be slacking on the coupons again soon with new baby coming, but I'll pick back up when I can! I've definitely learned you have to give yourself grace through the different seasons. For a time I'd put off buying things we needed just because I felt so guilty paying for that item when I knew I could get it for free if I had the time to coupon!

    Sorry for such a long comment! :) You're doing great at the whole wife/mommy thing! Love "watching" you! :)

    -Stacey Haynes

    1. I do the same thing with putting off things we need bc I don't want to pay full price! I will def still do the bogo deals at publix when I have coupons. You really can't beat them! We will also still buy our meat at publix. Walmart meat scares me... I love the coupon watch up blogs! I've used I heart publix in the past but I've found that their prices on their sight aren't the same as my publix so it throws me off a little! I'm a huge fan of southern savers. If you have other favorites let me know! We did good yesterday. We got a lot for our money at Walmart. I did notice that like when cereal is bogo it's obv a better deal at publix with my coupon. I couldn't believe that the swiffered dry cloths I buy we're over a $1 cheaper at Walmart! With two dogs and a broken vacumme we go through a box of those a week haha. I wish Birmingham had a Kroger! My sister in law and I both are keeping our fingers crossed we will get one some day. Wishful thinking probably.
      Thanks so much for all the advice :) I really appreciate it!
      How much longer til that sweet baby comes??

  2. One month til my due date! But praying she's early like her sister!! Yes, there are definitely things I know to buy cheaper at Walmart- like baby cereal! Mellie still loves it, strangely, I think it's disgusting! :) Sorry your Publix prices are so different! Mine can be, but usually they are cheaper rather than more expensive! Maybe try looking for a local site? There are a few local blogs I occasionally glance at when I'm doing a huge Publix shop! They'll often highlight the overage deals! A lot of times those are combining a green flyer monthly coupon with a manufacture coupon. I sometimes forget to check those deals, and later realize there was a good money maker- recently its been vitamins and carefree/Kotex pads! Maybe not stuff I need but I can use the extra $$ they make!

    If I'm doing a big shop at Walmart, I may use "I heart the mart" for match ups. There really aren't always a ton of good deals for things I need, but there are often free or even overage deals that can help offset everything else you buy! I bought a ton of dog collars once (donated bc I don't have a dog!), that gave overage! Their coupon policy states you will get the full amount of the coupon off so they supposedly have to give you the overage bc they'll get it all back when they turn the coupon in!! I've had cashiers try to argue with me before, which is why sometimes I don't even bother! It's never a problem at Publix!

    I've noticed that I pretty much know all my price points in my head now, how much I'm willing to pay for something because I know it often goes on sale or the regular price is cheaper elsewhere! I'm NOT a math person, love my calculator, but I'm impressed that I've gotten better with numbers by shopping sales and using coupons! Don't hold me to that with preggo brain though!

    Oh and FPU will be awesome! We did it right after we got married and LOVED it! We got a little off track a couple times but we're back to using our envelopes and sticking to budget! We're much better off with our 2nd kid than when we put some of our medical bills from Mellie on our credit cards! (bad idea!!!) We already have most of this one paid for! :)

    Alright...shutting up and stepping off my advice soap box! :)