Week 8: How I Saved $71.24

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how to save money on groceries

Each week I share how I saved money, hoping that some of these frugal ideas could be helpful to you.

Check out the Resources Page for tons of other money saving resources!

If you’ve read other How I Saved posts, feel free to skip down to the deals.

If you’re new, here’s a little background about why I share my savings…

You’d be surprised how much money you can save when you really put your mind to it. It’s the accumulation of lots of small choices and habits that dictate the path your finances take.

The money that you save might seem meaningless in small amounts, but it truly adds up. It leaves more money in your bank account that you can use to pay off debt, save for the future, or do more of what you enjoy.

I absolutely love saving money and wanted to start sharing how I save each week. Not to show off, but to hopefully demonstrate different ways to save and maybe inspire you to want to do the same.

I strive to save on groceries, eating out, clothes, gifts, gasoline, etc. You name it, and I want to save money on it.

My main motivation for saving money is to pay off our mortgage in the next 2-3 years. Every dollar saved is in honor of that goal.

We’ve paid off thousands of dollars in debt over the past couple years. Wouldn’t it feel so awesome to be completely debt free? And get to keep most of your paycheck instead of immediately sending it away to pay bills? I think so.

I thought I’d share how much I save each week by using my favorite savings formula: combining sales and coupons. Or whatever other ways I come up with to be frugal. Hopefully some of these methods can be applied to your life.

You can get caught up and read the rest of the How I Saved posts here.

Related: Flat out broke? Try these 5 tips.

Here are my savings for Week 8 – February 19-25

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Grocery Savings:

This is the easiest way to save money. Each week, plan your shopping trip(s) based on what’s on sale. Then combine those sales with matching coupons to get the most bang for your buck. I always aim for at least 50% savings.

Related: Use one of these 5 easy meal planning strategies to make the most of your grocery budget.

I use coupon matchup sites to plan my deals. My favorites are Kroger Krazy, Meijer Madness, and Bargains to Bounty. They make it so easy by spelling out exactly what the sale items are, and which coupons to use. Such a couponing time saver!

The absolute best place to print coupons is coupons.com. It’s where I get all my printable coupons.

Here are the deals!

how to save money

Meijer Shopping Trip:

I stopped at Meijer to pick up a few things. These are just examples of a couple deals. I recommend checking out your local ads and finding online coupon matchup sites for your favorite stores to plan your shopping trip.

When I can grab Kleenex (or Puffs) tissues for under $1, I like to stock up. There were on sale for $1 each this week, and I had a 50 cents off 3 coupon, making them 83 cents each.

I used the digital coupon on my husband’s mPerk account to get another free Chobani yogurt, like last week.

There was a little rack of clearance Italian items, and I found a bottle of extra virgin olive oil for $2.54. Also on clearance was a cute little spatula called a ‘cookie lifter’ for $1.49.

I’ve been wanting this kitchen rug for months now, and this was the first time I saw it on sale. It was 20% off, so I got it for $10.39. Definitely a want, not a need. But it’s just so cute!

Meijer grocery haul

Amount Saved: $28.53

Amount Spent: $27.52

Percentage Saved: 51%

Kroger Shopping Trip:

I ran into Kroger quickly on Saturday. They were having a digital coupon deal for boxes of their brand cereal for 99 cents each. There was a limit of 5, and that’s what I bought.

I always make sure to do the survey on the bottom of my Kroger receipts, because that gives me 50 bonus fuel points. You can do a survey once every 7 days, which ends up being 200 extra fuel points a month. That gives me 20 cents off per gallon of gas. I’d say 95% of their receipts have surveys, so be sure to check!

Amount Saved: $2.80

Amount Spent: $4.95

Percentage Saved: 36% (not quite 50% savings, but definitely a great price on cereal, especially compared to name brand)

Aldi Shopping Trip:

Aldi is one of the most effortless ways to save money on groceries. You’re going to save 20-50% on most items there, compared to other stores. You don’t have to wait for sales at Aldi. Some items are a little cheaper during certain seasons, but everything is always affordable.

I buy many staple items there, or whatever else I need/want that I can’t get cheaper elsewhere. For the purpose of these How I Saved posts, I’m going to estimate a 30% savings (and I think that’s being conservative). I am saving money by shopping at Aldi, so it totally counts.

My favorite Aldi is currently closed for a month for remodeling. Before they closed, they gave me three $5 off $30 coupons for the other two Aldi stores in the area.

I went to one of the other Aldi stores, and aimed to hit $30 and not much more, so I could use the coupon. A few of the things I picked up weren’t groceries, like the ironing mat for $4.99, foil, napkins and toilet paper.

Want some basic grocery savings ideas? Try these 5 tips.

Amount Spent: $27.21

Amount Saved (30% savings + $5 coupon): $13.16

Aldi shopping tricks

I use a collapsible shopping basket like this one for my Aldi shopping.

Ibotta Savings: I used a 25 cent rebate from for ‘Any Item’ at Meijer.

New to Ibotta? Click here for a $10 welcome bonus! You can cash out your earnings or use them to get a gift card to tons of awesome places like Amazon, iTunes, Nike, Target, Uber, and many more!

Like getting rebates and shopping online? Then you’ll love Ebates! I use it to get cash back on almost everything I order online. The percentage back differs from store to store, and it really adds up. They send you a check every quarter. It’s the easiest way to earn money! Simply go to ebates.com and search for the store you want to order from. Click through to that store’s website from Ebates, and order like usual.

Click here to get an extra $10 back from Ebates on your first purchase.

Gasoline Savings: $1.50

I used Kroger Fuel Rewards to get 10 cents of per gallon.

Miscellaneous Savings:

Every so often, JcPenney mails me a coupon for $10 off a purchase of $10 or more. Throughout most of the year, they send me one a month. Sometimes my mom gets one and gives it to me. I’m not sure if everyone gets these coupons, or if it’s just because I have their credit card (that I never use).

When I have one of these totally awesome coupons, I go to JcPenney and find an item under $15. That way, I get it for $5 or less after the coupon. I’ve gotten purses for $2, a jean jacket for FREE, and lots of other articles of clothing through the years.

In fact, I would say 75% of my wardrobe consists of items I got for under $5 at JcPenney or thrift shops. And I quite regularly get compliments on this stuff. You can totally look nice on a budget! I promise!

With this coupon, I scored a shirt I love for $3. It was on the clearance rack and marked down to $12.95.

JcPenney clothing haul

I went to the dollar store since I was almost out of my makeup remover wipes, and needed some more cleaning gloves. I got stocked up the gloves and other cleaning items, plus Scotch tape and some cute thank you cards that I couldn’t resist.

You can really save a lot by buying certain items at the dollar store. The facial wipes alone are a savings of $4, compared to the drugstore. They’re not the same brand, but certainly work at least as well. I’m going to estimate a $15 savings on these particular items, and I think that’s being conservative.

Dollar Tree haul

Related: Check out these 8 surprisingly helpful Christmas supplies from the dollar store.

Total Miscellaneous Savings: $25

Grand Total Savings for Week 8: $71.24

Total Saved Year-to-Date: $753.21

You can get read the rest of the How I Saved posts here.

Don’t forget to check out the Resources Page for tons of other money saving resources!

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What are your tricks for saving money? How did you save money this week?

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