It is a wonderfully simple idea. In theory.
In practice, of course, in order to build up a stockpile, you need to have some place to put it! For me, that's where it gets tricky. (I don't want a bigger house. To me, more rooms and more space just means more area to clean and more space for the kids to clutter when they drag their toys all over the house. I spend enough time cleaning my house as it is! But I digress.)
A stockpile doesn't need to be a giant warehouse. It doesn't even need to be all in one place. But it does need to be accessible and organized enough to access things when you need them. For those who are new to couponing, even just the term "stockpile" is somewhat overwhelming. But trust me, it doesn't take long.
I have been working on my pantry/stockpile for two months now, which means that every week, I have been buying more than my family needs in order to create my own little "general store." In my kitchen, I have two built-in pantry cabinets (one 36" wide and one 18" wide), which initially seemed like a lot of space. After only a few weeks of couponing, I realized I was going to need a back-up storage spot, so I cleared out the walk-in closet in the guest room, (which is just off of the kitchen), found some old bookshelves in the garage, and created a secondary pantry. Additionally, when we remodeled our kitchen earlier this year, we kept our old fridge in the garage for extra cold storage. And in only 2 months, all of these food storage areas are pretty darn full!
This is what my stockpile looks like:
I am a very visual person, so I need to easily be able to see what I have. (I actually despise my new bottom drawer freezer for that very reason--I can't see where anything is!) However, depending on how your brain works, your stockpile could be set up almost any way that works for you--perhaps bins or large boxes of like items, or an inventory list kept on your computer or on paper.
The point is that without a stockpile, you won't get very far in this coupon game. It may seem bizarre to buy 20 boxes of pasta and no sauce one week, but if that pasta is only $0.25 a box, then it makes sense. Rest assured that within a week or two you will be able to score some sauce for pennies too!
And maybe it's just me, but I think that free (or close-to-free) food just tastes better.