1. Change your perception of coupons. I know that a lot of you think of coupons as being something for "cheap people", "broke people", or "people with too much time on their hands". You need to start thinking of coupons as what they really are -- FREE MONEY!! If I were to hand you $50 to help pay for your groceries, you'd use it, right??? Of course you would! So why not use coupons?!
2. Couponing doesn't take as much time as you may think. When you first start, you will have to invest some time to get organized. However, once you have you're set and a few shopping trips into things, you get a routine. Believe me when I say that once you get used to using your coupons you will find yourself lost without them!
3. Get organized. This may mean one thing for me and another thing for you. You have to do what works best for yourself. I keep my coupon in a humongous binder filled with baseball card sleves. Each pocket is labeled with a category, and the corresponding coupons go in that slot. My pages are organized in the order that you would find things in your average grocery store.
4. Get your coupons. Coupons come from many places these days - the Sunday paper, the free weekly community papers, the internet, store sale ads. When you are clipping your coupons, remember to keep an open mind. Don't only cut out the coupons for the items that you regularly buy. I choose which coupons to clip by considering this -- Would I purchase this item if I could get it for free or really cheap? This helps me get a lot of deals that I might miss out on if I only clipped coupons for items that I regularly purchase. And heck, you can always donate items to the GLCC food pantry!!!
5. Know your store sales. You get the most bang for your buck when you combine coupons with store sales. Weekly grocery store sale ads come out in the Wednesday paper. Combining great store sales with coupons is how I saved $87 off of a $130 grocery bill this week and paid just over $42!!! Here's a picture of my receipt (I love leaving them on the counter for my husband to see how much of a good steward of our money I am trying to be).....
OK, now let the questions flood in. Who knows, if you ask enough I may even cave in again and do a couponing class :)