If I say “grocery shopping with kids” does your blood pressure immediately sky rocket? Do you picture screaming kids, a cart full of Oreos, sugary cereals and none of the items on your list? If so, then this blog post is for you.
I just returned from a rather enjoyable trip to the grocery store with all four of my kids in tow! I left the store with only the items on my list, happy kids and a few extra dollars saved! I know, don’t hate me! Your next trip will be this much fun, I promise! Here are my best tips on how to save your sanity AND money while shopping with kids!
[bctt tweet=”Save your sanity and #money with these #GroceryShopping tips from a mother of four! #Motherhood!”]
Save your sanity and money while shopping with kids:
- PLAN AHEAD! As with your morning routine, planning ahead for your grocery shopping is KEY!
- Go to your grocery store’s website and familiarize yourself with the current promotions and sales.
- “Clip” digital coupons from the grocery store’s website. I check Publix’s website weekly and clip the appropriate coupons.
- Cut paper coupons from store’s flyers and the news paper.
- Check Ibotta for applicable current deals. Ibotta always has extra savings on SOMETHING on my list! It is my favorite grocery shopping coupon app, check it out here: USE THIS LINK! (I spend my Ibotta earnings on Starbucks gift cards and they support my latte habit!)
- Make a COMPREHENSIVE SHOPPING LIST!
- Your list should specify which brands and the quantities required by the coupons you plan on using.
- Include EVERYTHING on your list. Getting in a habit of only buying things on your list eliminates IMPULSE shopping (aka SAVING MONEY!)
- Write the list according to the layout of your grocery store! This trick saves you valuable time and steps… no more trekking back to aisle 5 for bread when you are almost at the check out.
- Bring reusable grocery bags. They are of course good for the environment. They also hold more items than the flimsy plastic bags, which means fewer trips unloading your car.
- AT THE STORE: Use the same route through the store every time you shop. The kids will quickly learn your routine, and you save valuable time with that shopping list written according to the store layout.
- Before you start shopping, GRAB FLYERS for your next shopping trip! Make sure you have the most current store flyers, so take 2 or 3 of each, just in case they contain must-have coupons.
- I remind the kids that I have a list, and I will not deviate from said list! (This obviously avoids impulse shopping!)
- DO NOT STOP AT THE BAKERY! (Don’t make eye contact, just move along!) I have never told my kids about the free cookie in the bakery. (Shhhh, let this be our little secret, in case you run into me at the grocery store!) Imagine four kids on a sugar rush by the time we hit the frozen food section, yeah – me neither!
- Occupy the kids while you are shopping. Have one child hold the list, while you ask the other kids to remember three things each.
- At the check out, it is imperative that you clear the horrible selection of candy, balloons and completely useless pocket-size items as quickly as possible. While you are forced to stand in line, have the kids help you load the groceries onto the belt.
- Have all your paper coupons ready and hand them to the cashier at the beginning of the transaction. Also, it is very helpful (and timesaving) if the groceries that correlate with the coupons are rung up first.
- I prefer to take the groceries to my car without any help. Why? I am not sure, but I just don’t like to inconvenience the employees, although I realize it is a service they provide. I unload all the groceries into my car, while leaving as many kids as possible in the cart. Then we take the cart back to its appropriate home (either the cart park or up to the grocery store), and finally I release the kids.
- At home, I unload the groceries with my favorite grocery saving app open and at the ready. Ibotta helps me save quite a bit extra on each shopping trip. I quickly go through the app and check off the items that I bought, scan the appropriate barcode and then take a picture of the receipt. It is easily done during the unloading process. If you aren’t familiar with the FREE app, check it out: USE THIS LINK!
And there you have it, my friends – another grocery shopping excursion done and complete without tears from me or the kids! Everyone knew what to expect. They were involved, occupied and busy, and I had helpers galore!
I saved money by sticking to my list, planning my purchases according to the coupons, and taking advantage of the store’s digital coupons, store flyer coupons, newspaper coupons and deals on Ibotta! Everything added up to money saved – and my sanity saved! Win Win!
What is your favorite money saving app?
Do you want to break a strong spending habit? I share my best tips in “Break Your Shopping Habit in Ten Easy Steps!”