Welcome inside the Frugal Fairhope Coupon Binder,”Bettsie”
She has lost some weight this morning, but more on that in a later post.
What you choose to buy when you are grocery shopping is very personal, and so is the way you organize your coupons. There is no right or wrong way to organize your coupons, what works for us may not work for you. One of the main reasons we don’t give out binder materials in the Free Frugal Fairhope Coupon Workshops is that you may not use them and that would be wasteful. Starting in your coupon journey, you will grow into a process that works for you. You may start off with an envelope of coupons and move into an organizer or a 1/2″ binder or find another method or organizing. This is your own personal journey, so look around at what other people are doing and find your own way that works for you. If you want more information on the different methods of how to organize your coupons, check out the Organizing Coupons post.
The way we organize and store our coupons have come a long way, we are constantly improving our method but as far as binders, for now we have settled on old Bettsie. We are a very visual person, we like to see the coupons up close and we also like to see the value of the coupon and the expiration date clearly. Currently we don’t shop from our coupon binder, we pull the coupons from what is on sale, place those in an envelope and shop from our envelope and a printed list of the Frugal Fairhope post. This gives us a clear shopping list. We do carry Bettsie with us just in case we run across a sale item.
Bettsie is a three ring Five Star binder that was purchased at Wal-Mart and includes pockets and sleeves to hold everything from coupon books, sheets of paper, calculator and sissors. We used our Staples rewards to purchase Staples brand business card holders and clear sheet protector. You can also purchase baseball card holders from Wal-Mart, we felt those were not sturdy enough with the amount of use Bettsie gets.
We have a LOT of readers ask us to give them a list of our categories. Here is a list of categories that we use inside Bettsie:
- Canned Goods
- Frozen Foods
- Juice & Soda
- Paper & Plastic
- Oil & Rice
- OCF File
We don’t use category dividers, we felt that the extra weight and space would be wasted. Besides, Bettsie is a good old gal, so dividers are not needed, she is like a good Bible you can feel the chapters as you thumb through it.
The photo above is one page in the diaper section. We have placed all the Huggies (Kimberly Clark) coupons in the individual sleeves. Did you notice there are manufacture coupons, Publix, Target, and Walgreen’s coupons? This helps us with the match ups when shopping at those stores or at our Fairhope Publix store (that accepts competitor coupons).
Did you also notice that there are over $17 in different single coupons just on this one page. We consider coupons as cash, and it represents the value of money that we are saving every day. Not only did we place a sheet of paper behind the page so that the photograph will show a little better we also removed the additional duplicate coupons for the photograph (so you can only guess the true value that this page holds).
Let’s take a closer look at the diaper page. Keep in mind that you can only do 2 way stacking, this means a manufacture coupon AND store coupon OR competitor coupon.
If we were in the market to purchase Pull-Ups at Publix we could use the $3 Publix coupon (top left) and the $2 manufacture coupon (2nd row right) for $5 off a package of Pull Ups. If we were shopping at Walgreen’s we could use the $1 Walgreen’s coupon (top right), and the $2 manufacture coupon (2nd row right) for $3 off.
If we were going to purchase Huggies diapers at Publix we would use the $3 Publix coupon (2nd row left) and the $1 manufacture coupon (3rd row left) for $4 off. We would use the same manufacture coupon and the $1 Walgreen’s coupon (top right) for shopping at Walgreen’s. We would use the same manufacture coupon and the $1.50 Target coupon (3rd row right) if we were shopping at Target.
As you can see this makes it pretty easy for us to see the coupons value, store, expiration dates, and coupon match ups. Any expiration dates that we can not see from the front are easily available from flipping the business card holder page over and looking at the back. This is also how we go through our coupons at the end of the month. The business card holder really work for us because it is easy to fold the coupons and place them where we can see the expiration dates and value.
We hope some of these tips have helped and inspired you to create your own system. As everything in life you will grow and find the best path that works for you.
We would love to hear how you organize your coupons and what progress you have made in organizing your coupons, comment on this post and let’s help those that are just starting this coupon journey. Feel free to send us photos of your progress to Frances at Frugal Fairhope dot com.