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See I told you, this would help!

Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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Let’s all pretend that today is Monday September 1st…

My plan was to post this on Monday and being busy mixed with procrastination and forgetfulness detoured that plan a little.  For the entire month of September I’m challenging all of you to join me on a $1000 Savings Challenge (or 10% of your income).  I know that $1000 is more than some even make, so please feel encouraged to do what you can.

The goal of this challenge is to cinch up our belts and cut expenses we are already making.  My family is then taking that money and putting it straight into a savings account.  I hope you’ll do the same.  Hopefully at the end of the month you will have started your emergency fund or have a nice chunk set aside to make the more expensive winter months ahead less painful.

This is week #1.  So let me share our plans for the week.  Since this is Monday… and we are just starting I’ll wait and share what our progress has been for next Monday (don’t worry I’ll start writing it now so I don’t forget).

We sat down the last week in August and analyzed our budget to see where we thought the most excess was.  For us it appears to be food and gas are the top two.  Keep in mind that we are a family of six, so some of my savings prices may seem high compared to smaller families.

We already coupon pretty heavily, but there are items we slip into the grocery cart that aren’t necessary.  We also tend to grab food out a little too often.  We don’t have a lot of excess though since a trip to town takes 20 minutes.  I’m not in the habit of running out for coffee.

Week #1 Plan:

  • Pack Lunches and snacks for trips in the car.  No eating out at fast food, no grabbing a quick drink at the gas station. (approx $50).
  • No eating out for dinner.  We usually eat out once a week, always at the same Mexican restaurant. ($55)
  • Focus grocery purchases on basic needs.  No juices, cookies and packaged snacks. ($15)
  • Carpool with my husband.  A trip to town is a big trip for us, so we hope to be more diligent and take one car to run errands etc.  The real goal is live like a one car family, hopefully this will work! ($60 in gas)

Our plan also focused on ways to add revenue we don’t normally have.  While this isn’t necessarily saving, it is a way to push us to the $1000 mark as long we save everything made.  Since the end goal is the money in the bank we won’t be picky on how it got there.  I’ll be going through the garage and kids clothes to see what we can sell on ThredUp, Ebay and Craigslist.

If all goes well the total saved for this week will be $180.  Who knows maybe we can add some other ideas to the plan as the week goes on.

What’s your plan for the month on how to save?  Share your thoughts or plan in the comments or feel free to link to a blogpost below.

    • Julie

      I take a certain amount out of my paycheck each time I get one. I try to stick with $60 each time but I’m on a bi-weekly payroll. It’s not a lot but it could help with the total.

    • Jessica Tyndall

      We’ve already saved $180 just in groceries this month. (Though the $2/lb Bi Lo chicken deal is making that look a bit skewed at the moment since we stocked up! :D )

    • mommalana

      If the goal is to save 10% of our income then we already do that and then some. Does that count or is it new savings you are looking for? We just started that 3 months ago when we paid off our mortgage.

      • Becky A

        We also save 10% regularly, so we are attempting to save an additional 10% as part of the challenge.

        • mommalana

          We can’t do that because we also have 15% going into retirement and 10% to charity. Cheering you on!

          • Becky A

            That’s amazing! We haven’t even bought our first house, yet. I can only hope we can do that once we get out of student loan debt and pay off our future mortgage :)

            • mommalana

              You will get there one step at a time!

      • For us this is over and above our normal savings. A way to get us to really make sure that we are not having excess in certain areas, but also to have an extra cushion going into the holidays.

        • mommalana

          Ah, I save for Christmas all year long so we have that almost covered.

    • Amanda Bower

      I do pretty good as it is (JC Penny- org total 58$, I paid 2.14$!!), but what I’m doing extra this month is selling the kids old winter clothes they’ve outgrown on our local online garage sale site, and using the extra $ from that for incidentals and birthday gifts for two of the kids who have birthdays this month.

    • Laurie

      Reserve a movie from the library instead of Redbox, it isn’t much but it adds up. You might also find it easier to check out a book instead of buying it.

      Cancel cable and view shows through hulu.com which will save you hundreds each year. You just need to hook your computer up to the tv.

      Walk your neighborhood for exercise instead of driving to the gym to use the treadmill. You save on gas and gym membership fees.

      Create a routine to take two coolers with you everywhere you go. One with drinks and the other with snacks. Keep a blue ice in each. Both coolers are small enough to carry in and out of the house for each trip. We haven’t purchased a snack or beverage on the road for years. We keep the small snack cooler on the counter so that it is eaten between trips keeping stock fresh.

      Look at everything you pay for, everything and then consider the savings if you could do it yourself or find away around buying it period.

    • disqus_IbObps45z2

      Hi, Jenny and all! There is a great site, https://www.saveup.com/ This is totally free, and makes saving, fun! I encourage you to check it out! :)

    • Diva Jefferson

      We are trying the best we can with our budget as it is. I have a 1 year old on formula. We spend at least $50 on that a month with coupons. We also eat out once a week, and gas is usually spent with our gas cards obtained from Publix. I finally moved to a place with more storage space, so I’m working on my CVS savings by stocking up on the toiletries! We usually save at least $400 a month, so I’ll try to raise that to $500. My goal for the year is $5,000 saved. Wish me luck, I’m halfway there already! :)