My kids are cute, but expensive!
Ahh kids. Your darling devils angels.
When you set out down that parenthood path, your focus is on the immediate moment- as in, “how am I going to survive on no sleep?” (you will); “how will I know what to do?” (again, you will).
Fast forward a few years, you’ve moved past those initial questions and you’ve realized exactly how expensive it is to raise kids at the various stages of their lives. The direction expenses will change as they grow, but they remain. Here are some basic tips on how to save a little cash when paying for daily life around your bundles of joy.
If you’ve not already become best friends with the clerk at your local consignment store, that is your first stop.
Even if you are a designer diva, the cost of clothing as children grow is enormous. Buying “used” clothing takes on a different perspective. For the amount of time a kid stays in one size, they are essentially renting the items anyways!
Coupons anyone? Make a habit of collecting coupons and scanning flyers for sales. Groceries are expensive and your kids are only going to eat more of them as they grow.
Depending on how old your kids are, you are already aware at how fast time flies. The most important thing you can do as a family is spend time together (which is not always easy, between work, school and afterschool activities).
“Time together” activities often come with a price tag attached, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Make a list of things to do and post it on the fridge. Seek out things like provincial parks (beach day, picnic, hike, pond hockey, winter walks?), community festivals (often free and fun), library programs (often free and fun) and community rec centre programs (drop-in swimming, public skating, crafts or gym time).
Get a job
While it is your job to bring home the bacon, and the kids job is to consume that bacon, there is no reason that they can’t work for it!
I’m not suggesting that you raid their piggy banks to buy groceries, but as soon as your child is old enough, have them get a small job to at least pay for some of their extra spending (which is a notorious cash vacuum). They don’t have to go work at the local drive-thru either. Think paper route, odd jobs around the neighbourhood, snow removal, dog walking or grass cutting.
You can even help your young entrepreneurs set up a lemonade stand. Every little bit counts!