Updated: 07/15/2014 8:10 AM
Created: 07/14/2014 5:00 AM WDIO.com
By: Laurie Stribling
For many, grocery shopping is a chore, but for Cristy House it's more like a game.
"Some people call it extreme couponing, but I like to think about it as practical couponing," House said.
This strategic shopper is providing for a family of four spending only about $50 a week on food.
"Usually, I will get a cart of groceries for about $20 to $30 and it will have a value of about $50 to $70," House said.
House has some handy tips for people looking to save big while grocery shopping.
First tip: she said do you homework.
"If you learn the store's sale cycle and you shop in the morning when the markdowns are, it makes it easier," House said.
During her last shopping trip, the Super One on Burning Tree Road was offering four different coupon ads at the same time.
Second tip: stacking coupons is like a secret weapon. House showed how this works with some pizzas she bought.
"These are $5 a piece," House said. "They're on sale for $3. There's a coupon that makes them $4 for $10 and I have $1 off coupons which makes them $1.50 a piece instead of $5."
Third tip: check the mark down sections. That's where slightly damaged items or food close to expiration are.
"For example, a box of Ziploc bags," House said. "Who cares if the box is a little squished. At the end of the day, it's a good deal."
Cristy isn't the only one crazy for coupons.
"I get anxious when I see the good deals," Patricia Kirk said.
Kirk goes shopping with a binder full of coupon gold and this savvy shopper is just as passionate about her purchases.
"I like saving the money because that helps with putting the food on the table and helps paying the bills we need to pay," Kirk said.
Once Kirk got to the register, she saved $59 on her bill. That's 35% savings.
House got $170 worth of groceries for under $50.
"I would count that as a victory and this is more than enough to feed a family for a week," House said.
So, what's her plan for her piggy bank?
"Our goal is to purchase a foreclosure and pay cash and not have a mortgage which would be so awesome," House said.
House also has a coupon group that meets once a month. For information on that, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two Dead in Sawyer County after Apparent Murder-Suicide
Two people are dead in Sawyer County on Wednesday night after an apparent murder-suicide. Sawyer County Sheriff Mark Kelsey said a 911 call alerted authorities that a woman had been shot at a home on Twin Lakes Road.
No Significant Improvement in Minn. Math, Reading Tests
New statewide test results show students across Minnesota have seen no real improvement in math and reading scores. It's the third year of stagnant test results, and Department of Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius says she's disappointed by the slow progress.
Lights On: Most Northlanders See Power Return
The last few folks still waiting on power are beginning to see their lights turn on. A Rice Lake and Woodland family were grateful to see line crews pulling into their driveways Wednesday evening so they can unplug the generators and flip on the light switches.
Special Report: Escape
Forget about grabbing dinner with your friends and family this evening; how about spending the night breaking out of a locked room. It's an immersive adventure game known as an "escape room."
Essentia Health Nurses Picket Over Contract Negotiations
As contract negotiations with Essentia Health stalled, on Wednesday afternoon, about 600 nurses and supporters took their frustrations over a lack of progress outside hospital walls. Holding signs, chanting and waving to cars honking support as they passed by, nurses marched outside St. Mary's Medical Center entrances all afternoon.