Savings Saturday: My $40 weekly budget

Even though it was a “short” week for me because I didn’t have to work on Monday, it still seems like it took forever to get to the weekend and now that the weekend is here, it’s flying by way too fast!

I always like to add a little disclaimer before I post this. I am able to “make it” on a $40 weekly budget because I have been couponing for a long time and my garage looks like it could double as a grocery store thanks to my stockpile. I am also blessed to have several grocery stores that double and triple coupons regularly and I don’t have any family members with allergies or dietary restrictions. If you aren’t able to make it on $40/week, don’t feel bad or pressured. My goal is just to help you find ways that you can save money. Challenge yourself to do better, even if it’s just cutting your grocery bill by $10 a week (that will give you $40 extra each month!)

Here’s a summary of my shopping trips for the day!

Target: Total OOP = $0 (spent $3.33 on a gift card). The Ocean Spray juice was “free” using the $1 Target printable and the $1 manufacturer’s printable. Details and links to the coupons are here. The Pop Tarts are on Price Cut for $1.67 right now. There are $1 off peelie coupons on some of the boxes making them .67/box!

Kroger: Total OOP = $49.28 (the total for all of these items before coupons would have been $142.63!) – Technically I am over budget for the week, but I had $10.05 left from last week that I never spent, so I am applying that toward my grocery allowance for this week. Here’s what I got: 3 packages of Cottonelle TP, 3 boxes of Kleenex, 1 bag of dog treats, 9 bags of shredded cheese, 1 bag of pizza rolls, 1 graham cracker crust, 1 bottle of Juicy Juice, 3 containers of Daisy Sour cream, 1 container of Ricotta cheese, 1 box of Carnation Instant Breakfast, 2 bottles of mustard, 1 bottle of Cattleman’s BBQ sauce, 2 bags of Green Giant steamers, 1 bag of frozen ravioli, 2 bags of bread, 2 gallons of milk, 1 box of eggs, 1 loaf of french bread, 2 boxes of Rice a Roni, 2 packages of Fast Fixin’ chicken strips, 2 packages of Goldfish, 2 boxes of cream cheese, 1 bottle of Kens salad dressing, 1 can of Rotel, 1 package of corn tortillas, 2 packages of Pilgrims Pride chicken breasts, 2 loaves of Sara Lee bread. There are way too many coupons to list, but you will find most of them included in my scenario that I posted here.

CVS: Total OOP = $0 (used $10/50 CRT, 2 $1.50 Huggies coupons, $1.50/2 Wisk coupon, $2 Gillette coupon, 3 $2 Advil printables, $1 Advil CRT, $2 St. Ives printable, $1 Johnsons Buddies coupon, and a $27 ECB adjusted down), earned $15 ECB…I burned more ECB than I had planned because they did not have the Gillette Fusion razor I had planned on buying and for some reason I thought the Wisk was 2/$7 when it is actually 2/$9. The Wisk detergent was a quick alternative that was around the same price, I had a coupon for it, and it’s something that I will actually use. (The moral of the story is….always have a back up plan when you shop at CVS) My CVS scenarios for this week can be found here.

I thought I would share this picture also. I found all of these in the $1 spot at Target. If you’re new to couponing or just looking for a way to organize your coupons, here are a few possibilities. I am planning a post on coupon organization soon. I love the accordian style holder. That is what I use to organize my coupons for all of my weekly trips. I have a section for each of the stores I shop at most often (Kroger, CVS, Walgreens, Target, and Randalls) and put all of my coupons/scenarios in each section when I go out to do my weekly trips. I also have a coupon binder where I keep all of my coupons. I loved these dividers because they are a lot more sturdy than the ones I am currently using. I use baseball card holders in each section to hold my coupons.

Here are my updated savings totals: (if you’re new to my blog and not familiar with my savings goals, click here)
Baby Emergency fund – 748.92 (Goal = $1000) – I got my $50 “bonus” from opening an ING Orange checking account. I posted about this here. They are still offering this promotion, so if you haven’t taken advantage of it yet, you should definitely check it out! They also give you a $25 bonus if you open a savings account with a balance of $250 and are referred by a current member, so if you are interested in that, e-mail me (my e-mail is in the upper left hand corner of the blog) and let me know.

Gift savings – $132.42 (Goal = $1500)
Rolling entertainment fund – $0 (Goal = $500)

Here’s how much I have saved at individual stores:
Total Target savings – $139.27to date (45% savings)
Total CVS savings – $272.75 (84% savings…this would probably be higher, but I do buy my stamps there to go toward my quarterly ECB earnings and you can’t use ECBs to pay for those!)
Total Kroger savings – $110.86(53% savings)
Total Randalls savings – $39.47 (100% savings) – I have paid for everything here with gift cards/coupons so far this year

**If you’re looking for spreadsheets to help you track your savings, there are some good ones here on the Mommy Snacks blog

Question of the Week: What do you do when you don’t have anymore money left for the week in your budget, but there is a great sale going on?

I thought this was a great question! In the past, I have always budgeted a certain amount per month, and this is really my first time doing a weekly budget. When I was doing a monthly budget, I could float money from one week to the next so that I had money when good sales came along, which is basically what I did this week. Now, I also keep a separate savings for “stockpiling” and I can always dip into that, too, if a good sale comes along!