Savvy shopper

Call me a dork. My husband does all the time. But I personally get my biggest thrills nowadays from shopping — and shopping smart. In my past life, when I wanted something I just bought it. I didn’t look for coupons and didn’t really care about sales.

But now, in the days of student loan payments, mortgages and an effort to get myself out of debt… shopping savvily (not a word) is the ONLY way.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m thrifty, but not cheap. I still splurge on plenty (hence the $30 eyeliner I just bought, but I digress).

As a follow up last week’s post: Ready, set….GO CHRISTMAS SHOPPING… here are a few more deals, steals, bargains and tips to get you ready for the upcoming holiday shopping season.

KOHL’S:

I am a HUGE fan of Kohl’s. Specifically when it comes to buying toys. YES. Toys. This department store chain has a generous rewards program for their card holders. It was newly launched this year. So if you haven’t signed up already. Do it. CLICK HERE.

In a nutshell, Kohl’s rewards is a program that gives you $5 back for every $100 you spend.

I signed up the day my husband finally got rid of all of his old high school shirts/sweaters and decided he needed a new, more adult-like wardrobe. FINALLY. I was more than happy to oblige and we bought him a ton of stuff using a 30% coupon. I wound up earning $25 in Kohl’s rewards that day (including the $5 bonus you get for simply signing up.) As far as I understand, you can use your rewards with earned Kohl’s cash and your store coupons.

The catch here is that you don’t get that reward right away. You are issued your reward monthly and they seemingly have a quick expiration date. So if you begin spending now… you’ll get your reward for December. Which is perfect!

Here’s the deal I was able to score this week. THREE Fisher Price toys for less than $40! I kind of fell into this deal on a fluke, but this is how I did it. Kohl’s sent me an email (I get them every, freaking day… but thanks to Gmail’s new format they go straight into my promotions inbox so it’s really not that bothersome) stating that their toys were on sale. I combined the sale prices with the online promo code:PUMPKIN30 (30% off) AND SHIPPINGMVC (Free shipping).  And used my $25 reward. (Disclosure: not sure when these promo codes expire, but go ahead and give them a shot.)

Laugh & Learn Baby Grand Piano: $79.99 value >> marked down to $49.99 >>> + 30% off sale price

Laugh & Learn Say Please Tea Set: $29.99 value >>> marked down to $19.99 +30% off sale price

Silly Sounds Puzzle: $19.99 >>> marked down to 11.99 >>> +30% off sale price

GRAND TOTAL (AFTER REDEEMING MY REWARD) = $39.28

Extra tip: If you’re like me and cringe when you peel the sticker back on your Kohl’s ad and only get a 15% off coupon, you’re better off shopping online if you can a. reach the free shipping above $75 or find a free shipping code. You can almost always find a 30% off promo code.

Kohls savings

PROMO CODES:

If you’re wondering if I was sent those promo codes somehow… I wasn’t.

If you don’t know about retailmenot.com…now you do.

Go there, type in the store you’re looking to buy something at and PRESTO, the codes appear. You can even see how successful each promo code was. The site doesn’t have ALL promo codes though, so do a simple Google search with, for example: “Kohl’s promo codes October 2013” and in a couple of clicks you’ll have your money-saver.

TARGET CARTWHEEL:

As I mentioned before, Target Cartwheel is So. Much. Fun. I love saving and seeing how much I save. Plus — I get to see what my friends are buying and saving on too. If you recently signed up and can’t figure out how to earn another badge, just go to a friend’s Cartwheel (by clicking on their name) and add something to your list from their list of things. Now you’ve earned the buddy badge. Simply visiting a friend’s page won’t earn you that badge, you MUST add something from theirs. (Hopefully that makes sense).

Another great feature of Cartwheel is that you can use each offer up to THREE TIMES! I’ve used a lot of the grocery offers to save on things you can’t normally save on at the grocery store, like milk.

 Word of caution: Always check your receipt after redeeming Cartwheel discounts. I discovered that the register didn’t accept one of the offers I tried to redeem this past weekend. I went to customer service and they immediately refunded me what I should have saved. The only bummer is that it wasn’t added to my “Total Saved,” which cut me short of earning my next badge. Oh well. I’m sure I’ll earn the $20 savings badge this weekend.

photo

FISHER PRICE:

If you haven’t scored the high-value Fisher Price coupons yet, there’s still time. I was able to get several $10 coupons this week off of fisherprice.com. (if you want these, set up a google alert! They go fast). As of now, they’re still available. Check to see here.

I’ve read that Kohl’s accepts Fisher Price coupons in addition to their percentage off deals. I’ve never tried, but I may try soon. I plan on pairing these coupons up with target coupons to score some great gifts for my nieces and nephews.

FYI: Toys R’ Us has BOGO Fisher Price toys right now. And don’t forget they price match. Pair that up with the high-value coupons and you got yourself another sweet deal.

EBATES:

If you’re more an online shopper, sign up for Ebates. This program sends you a check for simply shopping online. I signed up for this last year but have chronically forgotten to use the site. Check out pepperminting.com’s post about Ebates. Jesi and I met while we were both honeymooning in Jamaica two years ago and have kept in touch via Facebook ever since. Her blog is full of great stuff!

 

So there you have it. Oh, and did you hear that most stores are opening at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving night for Black Friday? Forget dessert. I’m going shopping.

 target tailgate

 This is me tailgating at Target on Black Friday two years ago.

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