So you just received the best news of your life; your glowing, your significant other is hyperventilating and you both have that same question. “How can we afford kids?” The lingering question that everyone who wants kids asks themselves. Then someone chimes in with ” if you wait until you have money you will never have children.” This is partially true, children are expensive and you will never have ALL the money you need up front. However there are some ways to cut back on spending. When I was pregnant with my daughter I wanted everything and I mean everything. She was my first child, they are always spoiled and you buy things you do not need…. at all.
My husband and I were so excited we were having a bouncing baby girl and we could not have been happier. It was about month 6-7 when we decided to create our baby registry. Keep in mind this is child #1. We walk into this magical place (really, babies r us) and are immediately greeted by someone at the registry center, she seemed really excited to help us and show us EVERYTHING we would need. You get this cute polka dot bag with all kinds of goodies in it, as if we weren’t excited enough.. throw in more free stuff. In this little bag of magic there was a list, very thorough, ‘everything you will need for baby in the first year’.
Someone made a list of ALL the things I would need for 12 months and they did not know anything about me, my husband, our lifestyle. This is crazy.. but I was glowing and happy and that masked over any amount of money we would spend. So guess what we did.. I know you certainly saw this coming.. we bought everything on this list or at least registered for it. 5 crib sheets, a swing, a pack n play, a crib, a dresser, changing pad, the list goes on and on.. it is literally 5 pages long. Now how could someone weighing 7lbs 14 ozs need all of this stuff? I don’t even think I would know what to do with all of this stuff. It is hard to determine, especially with baby number one what you will and won’t need. Heed the advice of second and third time mommies, they have done this before. And if you do not know any mommies, take a look at this list of ways to save:
- Use regular detergent and skip fabric softeners.
- Buy a firm, inexpensive foam mattress.. babies do not need a 750 coil sleep firm.
- Use a trash can, bags, and air freshener in place of a diaper genie.
- Use Reusable bottles. Disposables, while convenient do not help the bank.
- Use a pet gate in place of a baby gate. They do the same thing.
- Skip a play yard. Use a bassinet or babies crib for sleep time.
- Take advantage of freebies. Baby does not know you did not buy it.
- Attend baby fairs, they are like flea markets for baby gear, you can score awesome stuff for a quarter of the price.
- Use coupons. There are coupons everywhere for baby gear. Don’t be afraid to ask your OBGYN or pediatrician for freebies either.
- Plot your babies growth, things go on sale in quarters, you can score jumbo diaper packs if you know you can use them.
- Use a booster seat. It is multi-functional and can be used for a long time. This will run you about 50% cheaper than a high chair.
- Make your own baby food. By the way you do not need a food processor or a baby bullet. Use a blender.
- Use your ears as a baby monitor. You do not need to hear every squeak, baby will let you know when they are ready.
- Convert your LARGE OVER SIZED PURSE as a diaper bag now.
Buy convertible car seats. Cuts the cost down considerably when you aren’t buying a new car seat every nine months.