Friday, May 7, 2010

Frugal Friday Tips- All About Babies

There are many lessons I have learned while raising my two boys. Some I wish I would have known from the very start, as it would have saved me so much money down the road!
I have compiled a few of my biggest and best tips for you!

1. Skip The Baby Bedding- With both of my boys I thought I just had to have the complete bedding ensemble for their cribs-DUMB! Want to know why? Because I NEVER used their comforters EVER and I never used their bumper pads until they were over a year old due to suffocation risks. Instead I would have invested in some better quality, cute sheets and called it good!

2. Shop Consignment Sales/Garage Sales- While I received most of my bigger items at my baby shower for my first child, with the second I wasn't so lucky and my children were 5 years apart. So, we needed to replace his car seats as it is recommended not to use a car seat that is over 5 years old. Well, we went out and bought the VERY nice, but expensive Chicco brand. I absolutely love it, but guess what...I sold my infant car seats at a Consignment sale when I was done...I wish I would have known about the consignment sales BEFORE I had my little guy. I could have saved so much money! They have QUALITY furniture, toys, clothes, etc. and at a fraction of the cost you would pay for them new! I have purchased many large items from these sales and I saved well over 50% of the retail price! Google Consignment Sales in your area and shop them FIRST! Also- if you have baby and children items to sell, this is a great way to get a return on your investment! If you have quality items, skip the garage sale and sell it at a consignment sale!

Garage sales are also a great place to find baby items. Just this last weekend I drove by several sales that were full of baby items! Don't forget to wash the items well and some items are just easy to take to the car wash and spray off. They look like new and you get the benefits of saving so much money!

3. Skip The Unnecessary Items...I mean, do you really need the baby wipes warmer? Or the No Hands Baby Bottle Holder? Keep it simple. Think about the items that you will need the most, and purchase those items first. Then, let baby come and see if you truly have other needs.

Also- ask friends and neighbors if there are any items you can borrow. I have been lucky enough to have a crib and changing table handed down to me after my aunt had her one and only child and I also borrowed a jumperoo from my brother-in-law! That right there saved me at least $500.00!!!!!!

4. Breastfeed- Although I didn't mean for it to happen, I exclusively breastfed for 13 months. There were maybe 10 bottles in Cooper's life...and most of those were while I went to a concert in Kansas City for a day and a half. It's a long story of how it actually happened, but I can tell you that it probably saved me over $1000 dollars! With our income being so tight, it was probably for the best too. Now, I am a stay at home mom and it was easier for me to do, but if you can manage, I would suggest it, at least for part of the time!

5. Be Gender Neutral- I think it is so silly that people buy a pink stroller or car seat. You are not going to get the same usage out of something if you don't keep it gender neutral. If you buy that pink car seat and then get pregnant two years later with...a boy, then you will have to go and buy a new car seat! If you stick to gender neutral, then you can use it over and over! Savings you lots of money!

What are your frugal baby tips? We would love for you to share them with us!
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