Sunday, October 11, 2009
Part 1 of my dungeon
Before & After Photos of the Coupons - Part of my dungeon
The first photo is of all the MONTHS, yes months of inserts that I had accumulated as well as coupons I picked up along the way or received in trains or from other group members. There was NOT semblance of organization, they were scattered everywhere and I had no idea where in the heck the ones were that I actually needed to use. My daughter went to her dad's this weekend and I spent a total of 13 hours on organizing the heaps of the mess. (4 hours on Thursday night, 6 hours on Friday and 3 hours on Sunday)
First, I had to go thru all the uncut inserts and determine which were expired (sadly, that was alot). This was approximately 9 1/2 " of inserts to go thru and does not include the enormous stack that was already clipped. Then I clipped all the good dated coupons. After getting them all clipped, I sorted them into stacks of coupons I need/use and ones that I will send to friends and members of my coupon groups that can use them. I tackled the "other" coupons for the groups first and grouped all like coupons together. I keep these in a bin with cards labeled by month. I chose to do this by month because when we send out coupon trains in the group, we must make sure that the coupons aren't short dated to go around to 4 people. I keep the current month first and then in month order work back. The coupons photo'd in the very back of the bin are either NON expiring or expire 12/2010 or LATER. Yes, I grabbed an entire stack of organic coupons. I don't see them often, use them when I can and I experience NO SHAME in helping myself and my friends :D
Once that was accomplished, I did the happy dance, not only for completing 1/2 of that task, but also because I got to take fling points for all those wasted coupons :) I "auctioned" off several stacks of the unwanted coupons to the girls (the collaborators of this blog) and I think we all thoroughly enjoyed it...we kinda felt like we were at an auction, lol. Next began the task of organizing all my personal coupons. I do the organizing for those a little differently. I organize my personal coupons by "type" of coupon. For example....beverages, breakfast items, bread, ice cream, frozen, frozen veggies, medicine, deoderant, paper products...you get the idea I hope. I shop the sales and I stockpile, so I often times have multiples of coupons and actually welcome them from friends, neighbors, family and fellow couponers. :) If I can get items for free or close to free that we won't personally use, I donate them to women's shelters, pet shelters, churches and even victims of wild fires, tornadoes and hurricanes. I paperclip all like coupons together, with the earliest expiration date first. I also like to have each variety of coupon clipped together, meaning.....I have a section for soups, but I have all the chunky campbell's coupons together, all healthy choice campbell's coupons together, all cream soup campbell's coupons together, etc. That's probably a bit anal, but if I see a sale, I can grab the coupons quickly and take them with me.
The final step in completing the coupon organizing is to organize my bin by ailes in the store. I have not done that yet and am waiting when I can leave my daughter at home to walk the aisle at kroger. I do shop at other stores, but mainly kroger, and I could actually probably just do this at home since I am smart enough to figure out that all cheeses, milk, yogurt, butter, cookie dough, etc are all in the same section, same with all the frozens, canned goods, etc. :)
I think I mentioned I have several BIG issues with my dungeons in trying to get unpacked, but I am happy that I was able to get this large task completed although it was only a VERY VERY small, minute dent in the big picture. I went shopping Saturday afternoon and it was so nice to look at the ads, make my list and pull my coupons....took me 30 minutes tops for this weeks shopping at 5 stores. YAY me!