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Jessica's Kroger Haul January 11, 2014

JessicaThe mini-couponers were on Christmas break for two full weeks and then they had two more days off because of the weather. Needless to say, the snack cupboard was pretty bare by the end of their extended break and a Kroger outing to restock the cupboard was desperately needed. After the video you’ll find links to the coupons and blog posts that Jessica talks about.

Coupons

$.50/1 any Colgate Toothpaste 4.0 oz. or larger (1/18/2014) $.45/3 any Snack Pack Pudding 4-packs (2/16/2014) $.55/1 any Mott’s Snack & Go Pouch 4-pack, Snack & Go Pouch 12-pack, 6-pack cups single-serve Applesauce or 6-pack cups Medleys Snack (3/9/2014) $1/1 any BIC Stationery product (2/28/2014) $.50/2 packages Dole Fruit Bowls All Natural Fruit in 100% Juice, Gels, Fruit Parfaits or Dole Fruit Crisps (3/31/2014) $.50/1 any Dole All Natural Fruit Jar (3/31/2014) $1/1 any bag of Tyson Grilled & Ready frozen product (4/5/2014) $.75/1 package Johnsonville Chicken or Turkey Sausage any flavor (3/9/2014) $.50/2 Knorr Pasta and Rice Sides (2/2/2014) $1/2 any StarKist Tuna Pouch Products including Tuna Creations (3/2/2014) $1/2 any Kellogg’s Special K Nourish Hot Cereals (2 ct., any flavor, mix or match) (2/16/2014) $1/4 6-oz. cups or any TWO (2) 4-pack 4-oz. YoCrunch products (3/15/2014)

Blog Posts

11 Things You Can Do With Toothpaste How to Make your own Homemade Fabric Softener

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Jessica’s Kroger Haul for 12/21/2013

It’s been a while since we posted a new haul video.  Ya wanna know why?  Because we don’t have to shop every week.  We have a stockpile! We really didn’t even need to go grocery shopping today but there were some good deals we wanted to catch before they were gone, like the Pillsbury Refrigerated Cookie Dough and the Betting Crocker Frosting.  Watch the video and see what other neat deals we picked up and have fun… we added in some Christmas music!

Coupons used in this video:

$1/1 Pillsbury Refrigerated Cookie Dough (exp. 3/1/2014) $.75/2 Betty Crocker Frosting, Supreme Brownie Mix, Dessert Bar Mix, SuperMoist Cake Mix, Cookie Mix (exp. 1/4/2014) $.50/2 Betty Crocker Boxed Potatoes (exp. 1/11/2014) $1/3 Nabisco Cookie or Cracker Products 6.5 oz or larger (exp. 12/31/2013) $.40/4 Campbell’s Condensed Soups (exp. 1/15/2014) $.75/1 Sister Schubert’s Product (1/17/2014)  

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The Happy Couponer Top Two Most Popular Videos for 2013

2013 has been a crazy year. We jumped feet-first into the deep end when we moved our coupon clipping service from Ebay to our own website. Then, we decided we’d carry along a concrete block in the form of videos – just to make it a little more interesting. But we’ve had a blast this year and we hope you have, too.

Today, we’re sharing our two most popular Video Hauls. Oddly enough, even though most of our videos are Kroger Hauls, these two are both Walgreen’s Hauls. Go figure.

Our #1 Most Popular Video for 2013

Jessica’s Walgreen’s Haul October 12, 2013

Warning! Mathematicians may find this video offensive! 

If you’re wondering: How DOES she manage to save so much money when she can barely put two and two together.? – Don’t worry. Jessica’s not really as horrible at sums as it seems. When she’s shopping she’s in the zone. But she insists that all of our videos be unscripted and real. Consequently, she has to remember all these prices and coupon values off the top of her head. It’s a cute head, to be sure, but by the time we do these videos it’s often clouded with Miller Light because we are, after all, The Happy Couponers!

In this haul, Jessica basically went to Walgreen’s just to check out their prices on Prevacid 24HR, Gas-X and Benefiber to see if that $10/3 coupon would be a Money-Maker at Walgreen’s. As so often happens, she tripped over a few good deals she couldn’t pass up while she was supposed to be doing research!

BTW — That coupon WASN’T a Money-Maker at Walgreen’s but it IS at Publix and Walmart. But then, you’d already know that if you’ve subscribed to our Daily Newsletter 😉

Our #2 Most Popular Video for 2013

Jessica’s Walgreen’s Haul August 11, 2013

Warning! This video contains the “Blurred Lines” song – one of the most hated, horrendous songs ever written! (Maybe that’s why it’s so popular? 

Visit our YouTube channel for more of our infamous haul videos and stay tuned… you never know what we’ll be hauling next!

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Are Coupon Bloggers Really Helping You Save Money?

rantJessica and I spend Sunday morning scanning all the ads and coupons – just like every other couponer – and we also surf blogs looking for matchups  – just like you.  This morning we tripped over another one of those Blood Glucose Monitor deals that other bloggers call Money-Makers and it pissed us off – AGAIN.  So we thought we’d address the term ‘Money-Maker’ for a minute…

When we use the terms ‘Money-Maker’ or ‘Free’ here at the Happy Couponer, this is what we mean:

The price of the product is equal to or less than the value of the coupon.  Period.

For example, we found the Progresso Recipe Starters Cooking Sauce on sale at Dollar Tree 2/$1 on Saturday.  We have a $.50/1 coupon.  When we used two coupons we got two cans FREE. A few weeks ago we had a coupon for $.75 off a 4.0 oz tube of Colgate Toothpaste.  Kroger had it on sale in their 10/$10 deal which made them $1 each.  Our Kroger doubles coupons up to $.99, so this was a Money-maker – we actually made $.50 on that tube of toothpaste and Kroger gave us $.50 credit on something else in our cart. Other coupon bloggers (and there are several – who shall remain nameless) tell you you’re getting something for free or you’re making money back if you stack a coupon with a sale, pay for the product, and end up with some type of reward points or coupons you can use on your next order.  Yes, these are ‘Money-Maker’ deal scenarios, but these other bloggers are very misleading with their headlines. If you have to pay cash out-of-pocket to walk out of the store with the item and those points or coupons that are only good on your next purchase, then you did not get that item for free.  You had to pay for it.  Yes, you get a reward, but only after you dish out some cold, hard cash. For example, one of the bloggers we follow does a great job of finding all those Catalina deals and Rewards Points deals but her headlines always read:  “FREE soup at Kroger.  FREE  diapers at Target.  Make $3 on such-and-such at whatever store.”  But she’s wrong.  Or, at the very least, she’s purposely vague. If you have to pay $2 for three cans of soup and then you get a $2 Catalina coupon you can use on your next purchase, that soup was not free – you still had to pay $2 for it.  Yes, you walked out of the store with $2 in your pocket, but it’s not real money.  You can only spend it in that same store, on the items they carry, at their own retail prices which may be higher than the other guy’s, and you have to return to the store to spend it. If you have to pay $25 for a Blood Glucose Monitor and you get $25 in reward points, that monitor was not free – you still had to pay $25 for it – right out of your pocket – to earn $25 in points you can use on your next purchase.  Sure, if you’re going to donate that monitor that’s great.  But will you really?  And if you don’t, why not just keep the $25 in your pocket – until your next purchase?  In essence, you just wasted $25 that you KNOW you need to earn $25 that you MIGHT be able to use in the future – when products you really need are no longer on sale. We even follow a blogger who goes so far as to suggest you go ahead, use that coupon and buy that $25 monitor, get your $25 worth of Catalinas or reward points – and then RETURN the monitor to get your money back!   This same blogger pulls in innocent readers with headlines that brag about saving 98% on his last shopping trip.  But he skims over the fact that most of his “savings” was racked up in rewards points and rebates he wouldn’t even see for 8-10 weeks – for products the average person wouldn’t ever use.  This guy makes us sick! These bloggers all do a great job of finding the deals and putting the scenarios together for their readers but they piss us off because so many shoppers are looking for real ways to save money right now.  They’re stressed and they’re panicking and these misleading bloggers suck them in and then these poor shoppers wonder why everyone else is saving 98% on their weekly grocery bill but theirs just keeps getting bigger. Don’t get us wrong.  We frequently go after the reward points and recommend those same deals to you.  But we always stress two important facts:  You have to first spend money out of your own pocket and the points can only be used on your next purchase. And the guy who suggests you buy that monitor, get the points, and then return it for a cash refund?  Well, at the very least it’s unethical, but it’s also fraud.  It’s no wonder some people and stores look down on couponers.  I wouldn’t want this guy shopping in my store, either. Why do these bloggers piss us off so much?  Because we’re coupon bloggers, too.  These guys suck you in with their hype about free products and money-maker coupons but eventually you’re going to wonder why you’re still spending the same amount of money for groceries, week after week after week.  You’re spending hours clipping coupons and chasing deals and you’re still not saving any money, and eventually you’re going to think ALL coupon bloggers suck! At The Happy Couponer, if we tell you you’re going to get a can of soup for free, we mean you can walk into the store with zero dollars in your pocket and walk out with a can of soup.  If we tell you a coupon is a ‘Money-Maker’ we mean the value of the coupon exceeds the cost of the product and you’ll either get the overage in cold, hard cash or it will be applied to the rest of the items in your cart.  And if you’re going to walk out of the store with reward points or a Catalina coupon we tell you how much those points or coupons are going to cost up front. We only hope you’ll believe us!

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – October 26,2013

KrogerAll told we put about 4 hours into this shopping trip which included clipping and organizing the coupons for two separate transactions, scouting the store for deals the day before the actual shopping trip, and the time we actually spent shopping. (For you it would have only taken about 2 hours because you don’t have to write everything down so you can blog about it and make a video when you get it all home!) The results speak for themselves… Original Retail: $272.96 Coupons and Loyalty Card savings: $161.34 Final Cost: $109.62 Saved: 59.8 percent When you do the math you see we saved almost $110, which works out to more than $25 per hour. Like I said in the video – Show me a part-time job that pays $25 and hour and I’ll eat YOUR hat! Here’s a list of the coupons we used: Nature’s Own Honey Wheat Bread -$1.99 unadvertised special – coupon $.75/1 doubled to $1.50 for $.49 per loaf Betty Crocker Mac & Cheese – $1 each unadvertised special – coupon $.25/1 doubled Barilla Pasta Sauce – $1.99 unadvertised special – coupon $.75/1 doubled to $1.50 for $.49 each Barilla pasta – On sale 10/$10 – coupon $.55/2 – $4.50 for 10 boxes using five (5) coupons Ultimate Hamburger/Chicken Helper – unadvertised at 2/$5 – coupon $.50/1 doubles to $1 – Buy three and get a $2 Catalina good toward next purchase Marie Callender’s Easy Sides – unadvertised at 2/$3 – $.75/1 coupon doubles to $1.50 which makes them free Progresso Recipe Starters Cooking Sauce – Dollar Tree 2/$1 – coupon $.50/1 – use two coupons to get both cans free Eggland’s Best Eggs – $1.69 regular price – $.35 coupon doubles to $.70 – Final price $.99 Campbell’s Skillet/Slow Cooker Sauces – These are HOT right now.  We always find them on sale at Kroger and Target, so we keep these coupons in the binder at all times.  Campbell’s Skillet Sauce and Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauce.

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – November 1, 2013

KrogerLast week she said she wasn’t going to go Krogering this week but you know Jessica – she’s always thinking ahead. Jessica has been on vacation from her job this week which means next week’s pay check will just be at her standard rate with no overtime included.  So, instead of waiting until next week when money might be tight, she shopped this weekend while she has a few extra bucks.  Plus, since she’s on vacation, she had the time to re-con the store and then plan a shopping list that included the coupon deals she found. The coupons she used… Nature’s Own Bread – $.75/1 exp. 11/15 Barilla Pasta Sauce – $.75/1 exp. 11/23 Green Giant Vegetables – $.60/3 exp. 12/7 Fruitables – $.75/1 exp. 11/7 Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almondmilk – $.55/1 exp. 12/13 Mott’s – $1/1 exp. 11/17 Marie Callender’s Sides – $.75/1 exp. 11/17 Campbell’s Go Soup – $.75/1 exp. 11/30

Here’s the video…

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Our Halloween Video is Too Cute! Here’s how to get your own!

On Monday we tripped over this guy on Fiverr.com who makes these really cute Halloween videos for just 5 bucks. We had one made for The Happy Couponer and it’s so much fun we thought we’d:

A. Show it to YOU! – It’s only 50 seconds long so it won’t take up your whole day and we think you’ll have some fun.

B. Tell you how you can get one, too! We think this would be so much fun for your family, especially if you have kids. All you have to do is provide this guy with one picture 700 pixels wide by 400 pixels high – and it can be anything you want. Your kids in their Halloween costumes, a Happy Halloween message for your family and friends – whatever!

In less than 48 hours he delivers a video you can easily post to YouTube and then share with all your family and friends all over the world. Check out his Fiverr gig HERE. (No, he’s not paying us to promote his service. We just think it’s cool! And you can’t beat it for just $5!)

The Happy Couponer Happy Halloween Video

 

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – September 22, 2013

Last week was absolutely WHACKO here at the Happy Couponer.  Orders were pouring in for that Rachael Ray dog food coupon, the Colgate coupons were flying out of here almost faster than we could clip, and to top it all off, the wonderful folks at AT&T screwed up our Internet connection so bad we’ve been knocked offline since Saturday. Thankfully, the Columbus Metropolitan Library has Wi-Fi, so we haven’t missed a beat, and we were even able to get our weekly Haul videos uploaded to YouTube. Here, for your viewing pleasure, is Jessica’s Kroger Haul for Sunday, September 22, 2013.  Because she already has a nice stockpile of basics, like rices, pastas, sauces and frozen foods, Jessica needed to stock on up some fresh meats and produce this week, and she was also able to take advantage of a few bargains, for an overall 37 percent savings.  Check it out!

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Jessica's Target Haul – September 22, 2013

This time we hit Target just to have a little fun.  Of course, we shopped around looking for match-ups and we posted a few here.  But today we had no particular plans other than to find a birthday present for the youngest and have a little fun after a whirlwind week of clipping, snipping and losing out Internet connection! In the video, we show you some super-awesome shot glasses we got from Crystal Head Vodka.  We’re going to do a write-up later this week, but if you’re interested you can find them here.

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Jessica's Target Haul – October 5, 2013

With three haul videos in one day, Jessica starts to get a little punchy.  Just FYI… You’re right…Four $5 Target gift cards really does equal $20 for your next shopping trip.   Jessica never was very good at Math!

Retail Value:  $75.00  After Coupons, Target Cartwheel and four $5 Target Giftcards:  $35.48.  Savings = 52%!

Target Cartwheel

Cartwheel is Target’s version of in-store digital coupons only, instead of a loyalty card, you download your digital coupons to an app and then let the cashier scan your Q-code either on your smartphone or a copy of your Q-code that you’ve printed from your computer. Target offers Cartwheel deals on lots of items in the store – not just groceries. Instead of offering cents or dollars off per purchase, they offer percentages. For example, they’re currently offering 10% off Schick Quattro for Women. Target also allows you to stack manufacturer’s and digital coupons with their Cartwheel offers so you can get even more savings on sale items. The “Perfect Storm” Jessica mentions? Find an item on sale that also has a manufacturer’s coupon AND a Cartwheel discount. And if you can also get a free $5 Target Gift Card in the bargain… well… that’s when it’s time to build your stockpile!

Coupons Jessica Used for This Haul

  • $1/1 Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauce
  • BOGO Pantene Shampoo/Conditioner
  • $.75/1 Campbell’s Skillet Sauce
  • $.50/2 V8 V-Fusion, V-Fusion Refreshers
  • $.35/1 Softsoap Liquid Hand Soap
  • $.50/1 Softsoap Liquid Hand Soap Refill 28 oz.
  • $1/1 Motts Juice or 2 Snack & Go, 6 Pack Cups, Applesauce or Medleys

 

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – October 6, 2013

We started out just going after the freebies Jessica had downloaded to her Kroger Plus Card and then we decided to see how much we could get for the least amount of money. Turns out she spent a total of just $52.43.

Here’s how it broke down:

Full retail price: $101.31 minus coupons: $17.30 minus double coupons: $12.26 minus Plus Card savings: $19.21 Final cost: $52.43 Savings: 49%

Coupons Used:

  • $.50/1 Maruchan or Yakisoba
  • $.40/3 RO*Tel Diced Tomatoes
  • $.55/2 Rosarita Beans
  • $.75/1 YoCrunch Yogurt Multipack
  • $.35/1 Eggland’s Best Eggs
  • $.50/1 Bird’s Eye Steamfresh Chef’s Favorites
  • $1/1 GE Lighting Products
  • $2/1 BIC Disposable Razor
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Jessica's Walgreen's Haul – October 5,2013

This is the third Haul video for the day and Jessica’s getting just a little bit … punchy? Or maybe it’s the Miller Light. Who knows? Either way, she had 1,000 POINTS on her Walgreen’s Rewards Card – NOT $1,000, and we don’t have any grout in the bathroom so don’t worry about that whole “child labor” think, okay? (However, the kids really do handle most of the laundry around here and have been for almost a year.) The deal on Purex is in today’s Walgreen’s ad so it’s probably available in your area, too, and you don’t even need a coupon.

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Jessica's Target Haul – October 12, 2013

target haulJessica never was very good at Math when she was in school and she’s certainly no better now. *sigh. What’s a mother to do, right? When you listen to her do the math in her videos I’m sure you wonder – How DOES she manage to save so much money when she can barely put two and two together. Don’t worry. She’s not really as horrible at sums as it seems. When she’s shopping she’s in the zone. But Jessica insists that all of our videos be unscripted and real. Consequently, she has to remember all these prices and coupon values off the top of her head. It’s a cute head, to be sure, but by the time we do these videos it’s often clouded with Miller Light because we are, after all, The Happy Couponers! In this haul, Jessica shows you how she stacked a $1/1 Target coupon with a $1/1 manufacturer’s coupon to get 2 packages of Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauce for free. Then she used her Target Cartwheel code combined with a manufacturer’s coupon code to get another one for just 64 cents. And there’s another lesson in this video: Always clip the coupons and always have them with you! Jessica found 6 boxes of Bertolli pasta on the clearance rack, marked at 64 cents and the original price was $1.29. When she used this $.55/2 Barilla Pasta coupon she got each box for just 37 cents.

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Jessica's Walgreen's Haul – October 12, 2013

Walgreen'sWarning! Mathematicians may find this vdeo offensive! If you’re wondering: How DOES she manage to save so much money when she can barely put two and two together.? – Don’t worry. Jessica’s not really as horrible at sums as it seems. When she’s shopping she’s in the zone. But she insists that all of our videos be unscripted and real. Consequently, she has to remember all these prices and coupon values off the top of her head. It’s a cute head, to be sure, but by the time we do these videos it’s often clouded with Miller Light because we are, after all, The Happy Couponers! In this haul, Jessica basically went to Walgreen’s just to check out their prices on Prevacid 24HR, Gas-X and Benefiber to see if that $10/3 coupon would be a Money-Maker at Walgreen’s. As so often happens, she tripped over a few good deals she couldn’t pass up while she was supposed to be doing research! BTW – That coupon WASN’T a Money-Maker at Walgreen’s but it IS at Publix and Walmart. But then, you’d already know that if you’ve subscribed to our Daily Newsletter 😉

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – Sunday, October 13, 2013

KrogerJessica had the opportunity to go Krogering all by herself on Sunday. Just Jess and her coupon binder. Yep… you guessed it. She came home with a ha-yuge haul! Our local Kroger store on Eakin Rd. in Columbus, Ohio is having a mega-sale this week with tons of products on the 10 for $10 list. Even better, on a lot of those items if you buy 10 you get 5 more free. Even Better-ER, our Kroger still doubles coupons! So, needless to say, Jess stocked up! Note: The King’s Hawaiian Bread Hamburger Buns she bought are $3.79 for a package of 6. Yeah, that’s pretty expensive and it’s not something she does all the time. But this week she had some extra room in her budget because of the stockpile she’s built up. The video’s pretty self-explanatory and here are some of the coupons she used: Rosarita Beans – Save $.55/2 Ro*Tel Tomatoes – Save $.40/3 Hawaiian Bread/Manwich – Free Manwich WYB 1 King’s Hawaiian Bread Sandwich Buns Green Giant Vegetables – Save $.60/3 Eggland’s Best Eggs – Save $.35/1 Ajax – Save $.35/1

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Jessica's Target Haul – September 1, 2013

Most shoppers, when they think of a “haul,” picture a mountain of products big enough to fill up the back end of a pick-up truck.  But Jessica says …

No haul is too small… as long as you save money!

And while today’s Target haul may be smaller than usual, she still saved 56 percent! Total retail price:  $75.76 Coupons:  $18 Target Gift Cards:  $15 Final price:  $41.76 PLUS... She earned 2 more $5 gift cards she can use on her next shopping trip! $2/1 Clairol hair color (ets) – Exp 9/30 $1/1 Tylenol or Motrin Children’s Product DND exp Mon 9/30/13

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Jessica's Target Haul – September 8, 2013

OK, here’s the REAL math…

Cost: $109.70 before coupons or gift cards Saved: $37.77 with coupons and Target $5 gift cards from previous shopping trips Final cost: $71.93 = 34% savings PLUS: Earned 3 additional $5 Gift Cards Jessica always has sucked at math, but somehow, she always manages to save money!

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Jessica's Kroger Haul – September 8, 2013

For just $161.39 Jessica picked up enough groceries to feed her family of 4 for about 2 weeks.  Keep in mind, now, she already has certain items – like cereal, cleaning products, side dishes, sauces, frozen vegetables and more – stockpiled.  Most of the items she picked up today were to replenish her stockpile, but this also gives her extra money to spend on fresh produce and fresh meats.

And here’s the math on this haul…

Top-line total:  $232.35 Save:  $70.96 with coupons, Kroger digital coupons and by taking advantage of the Buy 5 Save $5 specials Total cost:  $161.39 Saved:  31 percent

And here’s the recipe for Crabby Patties!