And the obsession begins...

As a few of you may know, I have become completely obsessed with deal shopping and coupons! Once I saw what other people were doing, in terms of getting things free or making money on them, I knew I had to give it a valiant effort. Needless to say, I am now officially obsessed! It's like my new job (you know, outside of playing with the kids, making food for the family, washing clothes, cleaning the house, running back and forth from school, etc...). To be quite honest, I don't think I'll ever go back, it's so much fun! Being math minded, and all, doesn't hurt :)

That being said, I have officially decided to attempt to keep our grocery budget to $200 in the month of January (and maybe going forward!). I don't know why... seeing that $320 / month was lofty the past few months, but I guess I just know that I can make it happen (one way or another). I may as well add that at one point while I was working, it was typical for me to spend $200 / week in groceries!!! And I was still shopping the sales! Although I do have to say that it helps that LD is out of diapers, except for napping and long outings (Whoo hoo! That really deserves it own post!).

So, for you few readers, I wanted to share what my guidelines are and hopefully I'll have successful stories to share as well!

To be included in "grocery"
* Food
* Toiletries (all H & B, paper products & diapers)
* Sunday news papers (which I buy for coupons)
* Ink & paper for our printer (which I buy to print coupons)

I'm going to try to post my Meijer (I almost ONLY shop at Meijer for groceries... I just don't seem to have the time to organize more than that) trips early in the week in the event that any of you want to get some of the great deals that I find! Tomorrow I'll post my last week trip (which was on January 2), which won't do you much good for this week, but hopefully on Wednesday I'll have time to post my this week trip (provided that I get to go tomorrow night). But to be completely honest, I won't at all be offended if you decide not to read these posts, they're just as much for accountability purposes as they are for your reading enjoyment.

One caveat: when I receive rebate checks in the mail, I will add it to my monthly grocery amount, seeing that it was originally from the grocery budget :)

By the way, if you want to know where I get many of my coupon match-ups, Sarah's Deals does a great job for Meijer in West Michigan (I also follow lots of forums and other blogs). She has a similar budget goal of $30 / week on food only that she reports on weekly.

(photograph by Tina Vink, link on picture as well as below)
We are a busy family of five! I enjoy time with my husband and kids, running, being outdoors, shopping for deals, and cuddling. My wonderful husband keeps busy playing with the kiddos, hunting, fishing, exercising and working on projects around the house. Madisyn is six, in 1st grade, loves being outdoors and isn't one bit afraid of bugs or worms! Landon is four, a spitting image of Daddy, and is the sweetest, naughtiest and funniest little boy, all in one! Tinley was born February 24, 2012 and has already blessed us beyond belief! Here's a glimpse into our crazy and wonderful lives... hope you enjoy!

Tiece of Cake

I've finally decided to make a blog (Tiece of cake) dedicated to cakes... as to not consume the family blog.

(photograph by Mindy Leigh Photography, link on picture as well as below)

Madisyn Grace

Madisyn Grace
"Baby" & "M" (photograph by Melissa @ M Design and Photography, link on picture as well as below)

Landon Adrian

Landon Adrian
"LD" & "Bubba" (photograph by Melissa @ M Design and Photography, link on picture as well as below)