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  • Using Coupons To Get What I Need, Splurge & Help Others

    I went to Ralphs this morning, and I have to say, the current Mega Sale, where you buy 10 participating items and get $5 off, combined with the doubling of multiple like coupons, is the best Mega Sale ever. I bought 20 items to get a total of $10 off, bought a splurge item, and bought some items to donate – all for less than $10.

    Here are the “needs” I bought, which I define as things I bought because we will definitely use them:

    I picked up some Challenge Butter, which is my preferred brand because it does not contain growth hormones. The Mega Sale price is $3.49, and I used 50 cents/1 coupons that I found in previously purchased boxes to make them $2.49. It’s not the best price I’ve seen for Challenge, but I was down to my last box and $2.49 is still about a dollar cheaper than Trader Joe’s (their store brand is also RBST-free).

    Thanks to a tip from Valerie, I also got Green Giant Valley Steamers. The Mega Sale price is 99 cents, and I used 60 cents/2 coupons from the 9/12 GM insert (there are also coupons in the 10/10 GM). E-coupons are hit and miss for me at Ralphs, so I never count on them, but I was pleasantly surprised to have two 50-cent e-coupons come off too, so I paid a total of 96 cents for the four bags.

    We’re running a little low on cereal, as 50-cents per box deals have been harder to come by in the last few months. My kids are also somewhat picky, which doesn’t make it easier to get cereal at my target price. But Quaker cereals are included in the Mega Sale at $1.49, and I had one 50 cents/1 Cap’n Crunch coupon (8/29 RP) left, so I was able to get a box for 49 cents.

    I decided to “splurge” on some Athenos hummus (clarification: not included in the Mega Sale!) – they are $1.50 per tub, and there were $1/1 coupons in the 10/10 SS insert, making them 50 cents each. I had four coupons, which all beeped for some reason. Normally, I wouldn’t pay $2 for hummus, which my kids don’t eat, but it’ll make it easier for me to snack on veggie sticks when I’m in a snacking mood.

    I also bought some Honest Tea, which I wouldn’t pay for but was free except for 5 cents CRV after this printable coupon (thanks, Brian!).

    The rest of the items I bought in the Mega Sale will be donated:

    An anonymous commenter reported that La Victoria Salsa has a Mega Sale price of $1.49 and there’s a $4/2 printable coupon (the coupon beeps, so whether you get overage will depend on your cashier).

    I also bought some Carnation evaporated milk using the $1/2 coupon in the 9/26 SS, making them 19 cents each, Stove Top Stuffing using this $1/2 printable coupon making them 25 cents each (via My Good Cents), and Campbell’s Chunky Soup using this 50 cents/1 printable coupon which made them free.

    What I love about using coupons is that I was able to get so much for so little. It saves my family money while we still eat well, and we can give even more than we normally would. Yes, couponing can take a lot of time – but it’s well worth it!

    Sorry there’s no picture – I had put everything away before I decided to write this post!

    Comments

    1. Since I've been buying mostly organic, I've stopped keeping most coupons. This post reminds me to keep them, though, to buy food to give away. We just spent about $40 at Wal Mart buying all the fixings for a Thanksgiving meal to donate to a family in need and a few of the coupons you mentioned would have come in handy! I really wanted to do another meal and I'm thinking if I"d paid attention to coupons the past few months, I would have easily been able to do two or more!

    2. oooh I didn't know the hummus was included.. looks like I definitely gotta do one more round :)

    3. Chief Family Officer says:

      @Camille – Yup, we don't actually eat a lot of the food I buy with coupons, but they're great for group snacks and donations :)

      @Kimberly – Just to clarify (and I've noted it in the post too), the Athenos isn't part of the Mega Sale!

    4. Oh! Ok.. haha.. I've just got Mega Sale on my mind! Thanks for letting me know :)

    5. Thank you so much for this Ralphs update!!! I can't wait to go! Whoo hoo!!! ;)

    6. if i have more than 1 of the same e-coupon loaded to my shortcuts account and purchase more than 1 of the required product for the coupon will only one come off or each coupon. say i have 3 campbells select ecoupons loaded for "buy 2 get .50 cents off." will only 1 come off or all 3 if i buy 6?
      i hate testing the ecoupons out but i gotta know cus holding the line is the worst!

    7. Chief Family Officer says:

      @Selly – As I said, my personal experience with e-coupons has been unreliable and I don't count on them coming off. When they do, it's a nice surprise!

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