Couponing in a Small Space
Many of my friends have been asking me the same question over and over. Where do I put it? My husband, our one year old, our 35 lb Lab/Mini Schnauzer and I live in a 1,000 foot, 2 bed, 1 bath apartment, so sometimes we have to get a little creative on where we put things! But, it totally keeps me from being a hoarder, and organization is KEY!
Personal Care Stockpile
First, My “Linen” Closet. As you can see… not many linens 🙂 But, our daughter’s crib sheets are kept in her room, and we limit ourselves to 2 sets of sheets… 1 on the bed, one off, and then hand towels, and kitchen linens. The rest is where we store our personal item stockpile.
Some close ups:
All of my “cleaning” stockpile is on the top shelf, along with the actual basket of cleaning supplies, and a few full size samples of sinus products I’ve received. On the 2nd shelf is my entire personal care stockpile. If it won’t fit, I can’t buy it. Just a quick note on the Precise and Thermacare patches (so as not to cause a riot) I have been in over 10 serious car accidents in my life (most of them not my fault) so I deal with CONSTANT back pain. I know it looks like a lot, but they really are one of the few things that help, and if I were to snap another picture in a couple of months, they will all be gone (so hopefully the sale cycles quickly!).
The third and fourth shelves include everything someone would normally see in a medicine cabinet. However, being a couponer, I don’t just have one of an item, (usually) so it’s sorted into these bins, to make it easy to find, and to keep our one bathroom neat and tidy. The wicker basket in the back is where I toss my samples (check out my Freebie Friday post here to find out where I’m getting my samples!). If say the Tooth”Care” bin is full (where I keep our toothbrushes, toothpaste, and floss), I simply don’t buy anymore, even if it’s on sale for “FREE”. It also makes it super easy to tell when I’m getting low on something! Plus I got the bins during a B1G1 sale, for $.50 each (those sales usually happen in January, if you are interested)!! The floor holds my paper towels (oh please, oh please, oh please, let there be another “Round Up” sale soon at Albertsons!) and excess laundry items. Our washer and dryer are in our bathroom, so our towels, laundry soap, and open dryer sheets hang out there.
When moving from our house into a smaller apartment, I knew I couldn’t have a 6 month or a year stockpile. However, I do still have a 3-4 month stockpile. I keep it all in my pantry, and my husband is cool with me using 1/2 of our kitchen table for the bigger, bulky items.
We have a 2 door pantry in our apartment. The top part contains 4 shelves. The top shelf is where we keep our open cereal, crackers, and baby food. The 2nd shelf is for our snackie (snacky?) items, the 3rd shelf gets all our pasta, potatoes, and other “boxed” products. The bottom shelf keeps all of our canned goods, pasta sauces, items like that.
The bottom portion of the pantry is the same size at the top, but we keep our pots, pans, and mixing bowls in the bottom half. The top shelf gets all of our “condiment” type foods, bbq sauce, salad dressing, mayo, salsa, spice packets, stuff like then. Then the last shelf gets our baking items, pancake mixes, brownie/cake mixes, frosting and extra spices.
Now, with only buying fresh produce, milk, eggs, and other perishables my family could live off what you see for at least 3-4 months. And almost all of the items you see? Cheap or free with coupon :).
While the system isn’t perfect, it’s what works for us!!
But I want to know: How do you store your “goods”? What secret organizational skills have kept your stockpile from taking over every inch of your house? Email me pictures at BeckyFabFruGal at hotmail dot com!! I wanna see!! (let me know if it’s okay to post them, to give others ideas on how to organize their stockpile too!!)
One of the Facebook Followers asked if I could name the bins, so here they are!!
In no Particular order (well, okay, we put the ones we use most on the top, and the ones we use least on the bottom)
- Medical Rubs (icy hot and the like)/Lip Balms
- Bath Salts/Massage Oil
- Pain Relief/Acid Reducers/OTC
- Pain Relief/Acid Reducers (this one is a double, because when we moved, I couldn’t find the first one, so had to go out and buy all new stuff… Then I found it 🙂
- Cold and Cough Relief
- Travel Items
- Sun Care
- Toothbrushes, Toothpaste, Floss
- Cold Sores/Sinus Relief/Ear Pain