We did our shopping on Sunday. This is pretty normal for us. The day starts with a scoping out of deals at CVS, Walgreens, Kmart, Target, Walmart, BabiesRUs, and Publix using online sales flyers. (We get Sweetbay and Albertsons in the mail.) I keep a list throughout the week of "must haves" that we are out of or will need to purchase. These include things like toilet paper, baby formula, diapers, sugar, flour, etc. I also have a list of things that we use all the time that we are down to our last one or two on. These are "look for good deals" items.
Then I make my list based on store and category. I used to make my list based on the aisles at Publix but our home store recently got reorganized. Now I just do it by category. This saves me a lot of time in the store itself.
Finally I get together all my coupons for the things that are on sale, paper clip the lot together, and off we go. We always hit Publix last because of the cold foods. The rest of the stores we go to based on a route designed to save miles. There are many times we'll have to go to more than one Walgreens or CVS. This isn't a big deal as there are many within a couple of miles.
Our budget is $100 for the week for all of our groceries. We also have an $80/month "household and baby" budget. I usually just say "$120/week" to make it easier on us, but that's not always possible. Some weeks we don't use any, others we use $40.
This was an "overage" week. We spent about $130.00 even though the household budget was drained the week before. Summer always has excellent deals. The money is in the account (from selling stuff over the past month) and I would much rather save a ton of money by going $30.00 over this week than to wait until next week and miss the deals.
An example would be that I managed to get two cans of formula, usually $25.00 each, for just over $30.00. This will do us for two weeks. I also got us a month's worth of TP (for under a quarter a roll, which is good for Charmin) and ended up being able to get us four things of ALL for $0.55. (That's just over $0.10 each for a normally $5-$7 item.) I love CVS. Love it, love it, love it. Baby food was also a need item this week and I got a lot of it. Usually we pay about $0.50 a jar. This week I got some for just over $0.10. (It was 3/$1 and I had a buy four get $1 off Q, for example.)
We stocked up on some essentials. We spent a little more money. All in all, we spent just over $130 and we "got" over $250 worth of food and items by combining sales and coupons. Go team!