Wednesday, February 4, 2009


We love to save money. We have decent jobs, we're definitely financially secure, but we'd like to be more financially secure. Childcare's not cheap, maternity leave hurts the bank account, and things will certainly be tight next year. Since the economy is bad, everyone is on the saving money band wagon and there are tons of magazine articles and news programs about how to stretch your dollar. We read these things hoping to learn something new, but we never do. Today while waiting for the midwife (for an hour), we read Fit Pregnancy magazine and read these common sense tips on how to raise your child affordably:

1. Use hand-me-downs. Kids just grow out of these things anyway.
2. Don't buy brand name $1000 cribs when the $200 crib will suit you just fine.
3. Buy multipurpose furniture - a dresser with changing table attachment, a crib that turns into a toddler bed - so that you don't have to buy new things too soon.
4. Don't register for clothes - these will be given to you anyway. Ask for the big things that actually would cost you lots of money and tell people that they can give you gift cards to put toward the item or have your family give you a joint present.

This is all so common sense. Tell me something useful, something I'm not already doing. I could even add a few - shop at thrift stores, join freecycle, join your local moms listserv (on ours people are always posting things they don't need anymore, but they want it to go to a good home), shop craigslist, breastfeed (it's free), use cloth, reusable baby wipes made from material bought at thrift stores or on mark down racks, use reusable diapers (these cost a lot so there is an upfront cost, but if you register for them, you might be able to get them as gifts, and some brands are one size fits all so you will save money in the long run), go to clothing swaps (there is one hosted in our neighborhood every year and one hosted in our church each year).

I wonder how much people get paid to write these easy, say nothing, throw away articles. We could totally write these articles ourselves. Maybe instead of looking for more ways to save money, we should start our own magazine or TV show and start bringing in more income.

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