Yesterday, I reflected on the things I wished I would have known when I started couponing. Today, I’ll look forward and talk about things I hope to figure out about frugal living in the next year.
1. Become happy with my coupon organization system. It seems like an on-going challenge. Either clip all the coupons and organize (which takes a TON of time), but you get to score the unadvertised deals. File all the inserts (which takes NO time), but I miss out on the advertised deals. Or the hybrid method (which is a little of both) and a complete compromise. (You get some of the unadvertised deals and you have more work.) I need to find contentment in whatever system I pick.
2. Start using the Walgreens Register Reward system.Yep, I post about it, but I very rarely take part in it. I don’t think God blessed me with the “Walgreens RR Brain Gene” because I always biff the deal or my RR are expired whenever I go. If you are Walgreens Coupon Ninja – feel free to come and train me.
3. Figure out how to share the love. I need to find a way to bless my favorite checkers. They are like icing on my coupon cake – when I get them at the register, my experience is so much better.
4. Start teaching DS about couponing. He asked about coupons the other day – wanted to know how they worked and what they were worth. I figure if he is asking, then I need to start teaching. (Any good tips on this would be GREATLY appreciated.)
5. Find alternative uses for body wash. I’m not joking when I say I have enough bottles of body wash to keep me clean for the next five years. I give away as much as I can, but at some point the recipients are going to wonder if they smell bad or if I have a body wash addiction. And even if I use it as hand-soap, I’m still a good three years out.
6. Bring more organic produce and hormone-free milk into our house. Maybe it is because I’m online all the time or maybe it is because I hung out at farms or because it tastes better – but something in my “gut” says we need to start doing this in our home. But don’t worry, I’m not going to go “crunchy” on you.
7. Find a bulk food store. We use too many beans, chickpeas, wheat flour, etc. to not be buying in bulk. Also, it would be nice to buy a little of something to try it out instead of having to purchase a whole pack.
8. Become braver in the kitchen. I really would like to know how to prepare some of the items I see in the weird vegetable and weird ethnic aisles. But it seems like a constant battle between making something the kiddos will eat and not being labeled as the “Mom from Fox Trot Comics” and embracing my inner-foodie.
9. Take a week off.When couponing starts to feel like “work” – I need a break. If I take a week off, I enjoy shopping more the next week. It also helps the budget because I’m able to bank the money for the following week. (Don’t worry – that doesn’t mean I won’t post. I just won’t shop.)
10. Allow splurges in the budget. For me this includes fresh flowers, for Hubs this is pistachios and high-end cheese. Even if we only splurge once every three months, it’s $30 well-spent and makes us appreciate the simple things that gives us great pleasure.
So does anyone have any answers to my questions above? What are some things you want to learn about or change in the upcoming year?