How to safe money without couponing

Since I decided to be a stay at home mom, I am slightly obsessed with money saving. I'm fully aware that living in US a lot more expensive than living in my home country, especially when my family only have one income source. Whether I want it or not I have to refrain my self from my ultimate hobby; retail shopping.

At home, I manage everything, including our finance. I am in charge with budget. I love budgeting, because it gives me fact about our expense, and math don't lie, when our expense is over the budget, I have to redeem it by cutting the budget from the following month, that way we are not going to lose too much money annually.

The hardest part of budgeting is not making budget, but to live day by day following the budget. Especially when it comes to grocery shopping, almost every month we would be over budget, and I could not figure out how that even happening. I mean I tried almost everything. Like most mom, I try couponing, and it did not work for me, I was overspending.

After several months, I understand couponing is not helping at all, instead it "forced" me to spend more because I have the coupons and it is on discount, and I purchased things that I and my family, actually, did not need. Not to mention, the time I spent on couponing, hours of cutting, arranging, researching, just to ended up buying more junks.

So I stop couponing (unless coupons for free products, that is another story for another day). I decided to only shop grocery at Aldi, it has most of the products I need for affordable price. I love Aldi because of the price, also, their product selection is getting better now. I love their gluten free, dairy free, soy free and nuts free products, it helps me to shop produce for my little one. However, as much as I love Aldi, I found that, in terms of quality, their product is less compared to other store brand, so I need to find a way to get better products for good deal.

I remembered I was a member for Cosco, when I was in DE. I love it, but I did not shop often there because it was far from where I live, and I did not have driver license at that time, so it was hard for me to shop there. Where I lived now Cosco is just 10 minutes away, so I decided to subscribe as a member.

Now, I decided to buy my grocery mostly at Cosco. If you do the math, their produce is simply the cheapest compared to other supermarket. Yes, we have to be a member and we have to pay membership as cheap as $55, but hey! that is less than $5 per month, and for one shopping trip I can save at least twice as much. I am aware that we have to buy in bulk, and for my self, it was something that I did not like at first, because I live in an apartment, and I don't have that big spacious freezer or pantry. But, if I stick to buy only the necessity, I have space to store it. Cosco also offers discount, and I don't have to worry about the coupons, I simply see the discounted price and I get the rebate when I purchase it. So that cheap price will only get cheaper with the discount, I love it. Recently I stocked up Cetaphil Lotion (we are dry skin family) for $10 (discounted price), that is for large size plus extra deluxe size that if I add, almost twice the size of regular Cetaphil that I usually purchased for $15 at other stores, that said I only pay $10 for two regular jars. How awesome is that?It's a great deal for me, since we use Cetaphil on daily basis, and Cetaphil rarely hands out coupon. Also the samples, who does not like it? I always return home with full belly, and I am not ashamed to admit it. The only negative side about Cosco is I have to be extra careful, because the temptation is real, I always bring shopping list with me, and stick with it,  that way I will not spend more than I should. Another downside is Cosco has less fresh products, so when I don't find produce that I am looking for, I always return to Aldi, before going to anywhere else.

By only shopping at Cosco and Aldi, I manage to comply my monthly budget. My family eats great quality healthy foods and I don't waste my time busy couponing. I think I got this right for me.


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