Thursday, September 3, 2015

Playing The Shopping Game‏

Hubby Tony and I are on the planning committee for a Couple's Retreat that takes place in early October.  One of our responsibilities is to put together 'treat' bags for each room. The retreat center has facilities for a maximum of 20 couples, and our budget is adequate if we shop carefully. The bags will contain fruit, single-serving size treats from Costco, travel games, and pencils and small notebooks.  I've gotten prices for all of them, but so far we've only bought a few of the items.  It's been a fun challenge.

The first purchase was the bags themselves.  A craft store that I drive by on my way home from the gym has weekly coupons that are good for 40% off one item. I needed two packages of bags, so I printed off two coupons and popped in there two different days for my single item.

Last week I found small spiral-bound notebooks in the clearance section of a big box office store.  Even though they didn't have enough for all the retreat attendees I bought all that they had, hoping another store in the chain would be able to provide the rest.  I was out of luck; the company website revealed that none of the area stores had the notebooks in stock.

The next step was doing more online research to find an alternate notebook source.  I was excited to find out that a local dollar store sold notebooks in four-packs (which would actually bring my cost down to half of my original purchase price.)  That night I stopped by the store on the way home and bought 10 packages without looking at them carefully.  When I got home and took a closer look I discovered most of the notebooks had feminine-looking printed covers.  Not exactly perfect for an event where half the attendees were male.

This past weekend I was leafing through the newspaper Walgreens ad and noticed there was a sale on nicer looking, solid-cover pocket sized notebooks for even less than I'd paid at the dollar store.  You could only buy six at a time, but that wasn't a problem.  There are five Walgreens within three miles of my house.

Think we have enough Walgreens stores in the area?

On Sunday, when I made a produce run I passed right by the first Walgreens and stopped in to made my first purchase.  After I got my produce, I drove a half mile out of the way and popped into the second Walgreens.  I circled back towards home to take advantage of a third store.  Later that night on the way to the dollar store to return their notebooks Tony and I passed a fourth Walgreens, where we went in and separately purchased the maximum amount.  The last thing we did was to wind our way through a couple of subdivisions to reach yet another Walgreens, where we repeated the process.

At the end of the day we had all the notebooks I needed (plus a couple spares).  time to move on to the next shopping adventure!

Five years ago today: Grassy


  1. Five Walgreens within three miles? Wow. Good deal.

  2. I love doing treat bags, yours are coming along nicely now.

    1. Christine, you seem to be the type of person who would be very good at that job.

  3. Do you know anything about Bright Idea Toys? It's up 141 near the Whole Foods. It's supposed to have a great selection of Breyer model horses, which Little Bird loves.

    1. The store is actually in the same shopping center as the Schnucks just to the east of Whole Foods on Clayton Road. Lots of neat things in there.