Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Observations from the Start

I will admit that I am a complete newbie to the world of living thrifty using coupons, etc.  I am about as qualified to host a Savings Club as I was to host the De-Clutter Club!  That is why I am happy to see that we have Kathy and Jolly and other members of the club that are truly practicing what they preach. 
I thought, since I am starting from the beginning, that I would share some of my observations.  On the Friday after our meeting, I tried to look at some of the websites we discussed to print out some coupons for products I will definitely use.  I found out fairly quickly that you have to register in each site, so I created a Yahoo email specifically for the purpose of gathering coupons.  Just tracking where I have registered will be the first hurdle.  I suggest always using the same user name, email and password throughout, so that you will always know how to get into any site.  And use a separate account since I can imagine that you will be getting a lot of mail!  

The first site I went to visit was, which is useful to see what coupons were issued on what date and in what paper or circular, but it is really just a clearinghouse for other coupon sites, such as and  Most of the information on Taylor Town is expired or way out-of-date.  On, you have to download a coupon printer in order to print the coupons they have to offer.  Once I downloaded the “printer,” I got a message that the coupon I was going for had expired.  This was very frustrating.  

I visited a few other sites and found that some are just blogs of information from other couponers that need to be read through or searched to get useful information, some are more about freebies, some are about larger ticket purchases and some are very complicated to get into.  I was getting a little discouraged that this was going to be harder than I thought. has a tab for beginners with useful information and, as I said in a previous blog, has Couponing 101, 102 and 103 and other practical tips of the kind that Kathy shared with us in her packet of information.  This, however, takes a lot of time to read through and digest.  I thought it would be a simple task to just find a coupon and cash in on the savings. 

I surfed a little from some of the sites and found a site called which features the Coupon Network Advisory Board and offers a blog site called Smart Living, about what is new and trendy in the world of coupons and organizing your life.  Many of the links to information on the blog were dead links but there are taps to printable manufactures coupons and a program called YourBucks Offers that prints deals that are specific to certain stores such as Stop & Shop, Target, Kmart and Walgreens – all stores that are convenient to my home.  This site is nice in that you get a summary page of product offers (18) from which you can get more information or you can select and the coupon is added to “Your Wallet.”  These products can be sorted by category, featured brands or store.  Once you add everything you want from Coupon Network and from YourBucks Offers to your wallet, you can print all the offers consolidated 3 to a page.  I imagine this will save some printer ink.  I used this site to print about a dozen manufacture’s coupons and YourBucks offers and it was very easy. 

Tomorrow, I will tell you how things went when I went to Stop & Shop, armed with my coupons and YourBucks offers.  I will share some more observations and try to make some preliminary conclusions about my first attempt as saving money.

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