Couponing for the Rest of Us

Prepare lunchbox snacks ahead, save time and money! ($.10 per snack)

I get 4 kids off to school each morning, and that can be a crazy task when I’m  also helping people find their “favorite socks” and last night’s homework – or being called-in to solve a cowlick crisis in the upstairs bathroom.  Not to mention – this girl is not a morning person AT ALL.  My mom always tells me that if I’ll just stop staying up late I’ll become a morning person, no problem!  Well I’ll tell you something – that dog don’t hunt.

Anyway – I try to make things ahead to help myself out in the mornings – like making sandwiches in advance and freezing them (Just like lunchables!  They thaw to the perfect softness by noon) and I also make the entire week’s snack bags in advance.

The cost for those handy 20-Pack bags of chips is $6 – $7 and each bag is just 1 oz.  Make your own snack bags to save money, and do the whole week’s worth on Saturday or Sunday to save yourself time in the mornings!  I like to buy the snack-size baggies and fill them up with my kids favorite Chex mix (Either Cheesey, Turtle or Bold).  I’ll add a handful of unsalted nuts in each one for a protein boost and sometimes other odds and ends (mini-pretzels, or raisins or dried cranberries in the turtle mix).  Let’s breakdown the cost:

I buy (2) Bags of Chex Mix 8.75oz Bag – $.97 each *after coupons at Walgreens
I add a few handfuls of nuts and break mine down into 20 bags (4 kids x 5 days)
Cost per 1oz snack bag = $.10 each  + small price for nuts

So it costs me a little over $2 for a week’s worth of lunchbox snacks that are healthier than chips, just as convenient come morning, and still give my kids a choice of their favorite flavors.  The bags of chips however, will run me about $14 for a week’s worth.  I save $12 per week just on lunchbox snacks!

What are some tips & tricks that you use to save money and time on school lunches?  Please share them in the comments – or email your ideas (and a picture please!) to time2saveworkshops @ gmail dot com (leave out the spaces)


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