With the joys of motherhood also comes the overwhelming realization of the financial responsibility — providing for a little person is a big job! These days, cutting corners has never been easier. E-bay is a lifesaver for most Metro mamas – the patient shopper need not scrimp to find everything for baby from clothes to toys. Craigslist.com is also a find for everything from mildly used furniture to notices for yard sales specializing in goodies for kiddies. And to beat the babysitting blues, start a co-op with friends and neighbors. Exchanging sitting duties is most economical, and a great reason for a play date.
A great resource for all things thrifty is Baby Bargains. Denise and Alan Fields, authors of Bridal Bargains, explain what’s super and what’s silly, what’s essential and what’s extravagant, and how to find it at the best price. The book offers tips on which clothing brands are safest and least expensive, and how to shop for everything from monitors to toys. For more information, visit www.amazon.com
Summer is in full swing, and it is looking to be a hot one, complete with plenty of strong sun. The default shade tied onto strollers to protect our little ones is the Pepeny fabric shield. However, an equally effective shield is available from Protect-a-bud. These shields have the same SPF protection, are offered in navy blue rather than black and are anywhere from $10 to $15 cheaper than competitors. You can buy all Protect-a-bud products, including swimwear, blankets and hats at: www.protect-a-bubusa.com or use the store locator to find a local retailer.
How do we share this love of saving a few dollars with our children? In New York City, where everything is expensive and excessive, it’s essential to teach our children the value of a dollar early on so that they don’t run into trouble late. In fact, over 40 percent of families live off of 110 percent of their incomes. Lori Mackey author of Money Mama & The Three Little Pigs and founder of www.prosperity4Kids.com, has given us a great tool to start this conversation early and effectively with the youngest child. Money Mama & The Three Little Pigs is a children’s book based on the concepts of the three little pigs, with a financial twist. Money Mama has three children, the Giving Piggy, who teaches about philanthropy, the Investing Piggy, who teaches how money grows when invested, and the Savings Piggy, who teaches the benefits of saving. The Money Mama herself teaches about spending wisely. This book comes with a CD and a Piggy Bank that has four different slots for kids to separate their money. Lori has answered the all important question of “HELP! How do I help my kids become financially responsible adults?” These books are available online at: www.prosperity4Kids.com and in the kid’s corner of the ING Direct Shop: shop.ingdirect.com
Having children has never been more expensive but with a few tricks, saving money has never been easier.