fwotc Check out my grocery shopping trip today! I was able to walk out of Tom Thumb around lunchtime with $21.54 worth of groceries, paying only $5.21. Want to know how I did it?

I used the “Mix & Match” promotion going on right now at Tom Thumb, Randalls and other Safeway stores. When you buy 10 participating products, you get $5 off instantly at checkout. I combined this sale with newspaper coupons, printable coupons and loadable coupons to result in a savings of 76 percent. (When you count in the shoppers’ card savings, I saved 83 percent.) Here’s what I got:

1 Betty Crocker Frosting, priced at $1.79, combined with a 50-cent Cellfire  loadable coupon and a 50-cent manufacturer coupon here (this doubled to $1) = 0.29

2 Ken’s Salad Dressings, 2.19 each, combined with $1 coupons from the 5/3/09 Smartsource newspaper insert = total of 2.38 for two (1.19 each)

1 Barilla Piccolini pasta wheels, 1.39, combined with a 0.75 Internet coupon here = 0.64

1 Joint Juice flavored water, 0.99, combined with a $1 coupon from the 4/26 Smartsource insert = FREE plus 1 penny overage (i.e., they paid me a penny to take this)

1 Hefty OneZip freezer bags, $2, combined with a $1 coupon from the 5/17 RedPlum insert = $1

1 Hot Pockets Pepperoni flavor, $2.50, combined with a 0.50 coupon (doubled to $1) from the 5/17 Smartsource insert = $1.50

1 Dry Idea Gel Deodorant, $2.49, combined with a $2 printable coupon here = 0.49

Johnsonville Breakfast Sausage patties, $3, combined with a $1 coupon from the 4/5/09 Smartsource insert = $2

Johnsonville Breakfast Sausage links, $3, combined with a 0.55 coupon from the 4/5/09 Smartsource insert = $2.45

So that’s a total of $10.76 … take off the $5 Mix & Match discount and my total is $5.76. (I am not sure exactly how I arrived at my actual price paid, which was $5.21. I do see that my sales tax was negative 3 cents and looking at my receipt, I believe one of my 50 cent coupons actually got scanned twice by accident.)

I know that this is puny compared with what some other super-couponers do on their shopping trips, but I am proud of this! This was my first attempt at couponing on a Tom Thumb sale and I think it turned out well. It should be noted, though, that the things I bought today do not represent all of my grocery needs. I will need to go to Wal-Mart later in the week for staples like eggs, milk, bread and produce. But my family and I WILL use and enjoy everything that I purchased today. We’ll have the sausage for breakfast, use the pasta for homemade mac n’ cheese, the dressings on our salads…et cetera.

Visit www.afullcup.com and head for the Safeway forums for a complete list of the items participating in the Mix & Match sale. You can also look at their weekly circular at www.tomthumb.com to see some of the items.