Money Matter$

~ Posted on Tuesday, October 11, 2011 at 1:48 PM ~

As a SAHM for 2 years now, I would like to share how finances affect our parenting. Before I begin, I would like to clarify that we're not that dirt poor until we can't afford to buy anything, but as a parent now, we think the following items listed have indeed helped us save lots of money, enabling us to spend it on items which we really need and are of better use.

1. We gladly accept hand-me-down items!

* Image from Google search

Since we became a parent, we really love getting hand-me-downs from our relatives, friends and even ex-colleagues. You have no idea how much we save from not needing to buy bath tubs, toys, books, clothings, shoes, sandals, playpen, even a baby crib (which we used less than 1 week for Ben before we decided to co-sleep). All the money saved from not needing to buy things like this are better use to buy better quality food and necessities for the family.

* Our Point: You don't need to buy branded or new things when you can still make use (reuse) of old things. Recycle, recyle, recycle! And just because you are using hand-me-down stuff doesn't mean you are poor, just that you'd rather save the money for something better and appreciate that the old stuff can still be reused!

2. We are into DIY-ing some of Ben's stuff!

* Image from Google search

My regular blog readers would have read my post about my hubby's 1st DIY playmat and 2nd DIY playmat for Ben. Initially I was thinking of learning to make it using felt but that would take time (to learn a new craft) and money (to buy the supplies). In the end, hubby decided to use cardboards instead and we saved money from these DIY projects! My MIL also made and sewed some of Ben's pillows and bolsters herself.

* Our Point: We don't always have to buy new toys for our kids. We can make it ourselves and cultivate a sense of independence and creativity in our children to imagine and create things themselves! Also, by DIY-ing the toys, we are also recycling products like cardboards etc.

3. We are into preparing and making our own baby foods

Ben having pureed carrots...

When Ben was ready for solids at 6 months old, we bought a small tin of Nestle rice cereal  to mix with my breastmilk for him to try out. After that, we decided to prepare Ben's food ourselves. Meaning, we buy the ingredients from the grocery store and prepare it in batches and freeze it. It saves us money and we are more at ease knowing what went into the food Ben ate.

* Our Point: Just because it is soooooo convenient (I know this cos we bought that 1 small tin of Nestle rice cereal to try out. Guilty I agree!) to get baby food outside doesn't mean we should just buy it to save time and work. If you can, make and prepare the food yourself and it will save you more money and you will have peace of mind knowing what goes into the food that you are feeding to your child!

4. We are into breastfeeding

Seriously, breastfeeding really helped us save LOTS of money. We don't have to think of what formula powder, what bottles, what steriliser, what utensils etc etc to get. Of course, I am so thankful I am able to breastfeed Ben (he's 31 months old now btw) for so long and even now, by tandem nursing him and baby Alyson!

Me tandem nursing Ben and Alyson on the 1st night I was back from hospital...

* Our Point: If you can, do try to breastfeed your child, no matter how long you can do so, just give it a try! I get really frustrated hearing new mums (or mums to be) giving up or not even giving breastfeeding a try! Such a waste!!!

** Read: Ecclesiastes 7:12 (NIV), Hebrews 13:5 (NIV), Psalm 4:5 (NIV)

Comments (18) -


All great ways to save money! All I'm doing also, except tandem nurse Smile


Couldn't agree more. I like hand-me-downs too. Though I don't do much DIY stuff but I support the idea. And yes, I like to prepare the food myself also even though I can leave it to the babysitter when my children started solid. I am pro breastfeeding too but I terasa lar. Don't marah me coz I never bf as long as u..Tong hehe.


You are great parents...god bless you

Dominique@Dominique's Desk

Those are really great ways of saving money. I too use hand me down for the kids. The only one I don't do is tandem nursing as my #2 is already 4.5yrs old and I'm not really in favour as #3 drinks milk like 24/7 a day when she was younger.


I don't understand how hand me downs have such a bad reputation. Especially for children, they use their things for such a small amount of time, they're not even worthy to be called 'used'.
Where I grew up, there's a whole community system of rotating children's things depending on who has a child of what age. I didn't know this until a friend of mine told me, and I started participating.
I think it's fun that my daughter's things get worn over again, and it's a great way for us to get winter clothes for those small periods we're in Belgium.

Lauren @ Hobo Mama

I totally agree with your points! I was surprised that people say babies are expensive — they certainly don't have to be. (Barring emergencies, of course!) We kept our expenses super low with Mikko, buying secondhand and getting a lot of things gifted, and simply choosing to do without a lot of stuff, and now with our second child, it's even easier to reuse the things we had with our first!

Dionna @ Code Name: Mama

Breastfeeding can be such a cost saver, assuming you don't have to spend much on pumping supplies Smile We also LOVE hand me downs - although they stop coming as often once the kiddos get big enough to wear out clothes more!

mrs green @littlegreenblog

Fantastic - i LOVE the whole 3 rs philosophy, it's a total no brainer isn't it? Children don't need to be expensive; it's our consumerist culture that tells us that. Thanks for sharing your tips!


Hand me downs are great!!  I also take advange of consignment stores and sales - amazing what we're able to pick up and a fraction of the price!


I love used stuff! I really wish I would have thought to buy things used before Peanut was born. Luckily we still got a lot for free from my baby shower and the grandparents, but most of it ended up being things we didn't want/need so I ended up selling them used myself. Now Peanut is almost exclusively clothed in used items and she's pretty dang cute in them. :-D


Definitely love those hand-me-downs!  It's really the greener option ... only in America do we buy tons and tons of baby gear and then throw it all away.  Those things still have lots of life in them, why not use them?  We got so much stuff on Craigslist -- there were very few things that we actually purchased new.

As far as baby food goes, we did baby-led-weaning, which costs basically nothing in either time or money.  Definitely a win!

Alicia C.

These are all great tips! I love getting bags and boxes of hand-me-down baby stuff - it's like getting a surprise gift!


Lovely list of helpful actions we can take to save money and enjoy parenting. We love hand me downs and used stuff, too. Smile It's fun to recycle, get, use, give. Thank you for sharing what works for your family!

Arpita of Up, Down And Natural

This is wonderful, I agree there are always ways that you can cut down! I personally love the DIY projects so that helps! And with an older sister who has both a boy and a girl I will certainly have my helping of hand me downs by the time I get pregnant and I could not be MORE delighted to accept them!  Smile Thanks for the other ideas as well!

Jenny @ I'm a full-time mummy

Thank you all for sharing your comments and visits!

Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama

I loved this post and especially the "our point" entries. My money saving philosophies are right in line with yours. I made my daughter a playmat when she was little and LOVED your husband's idea with the cardboard. Wish I had thought of that. Great post with great tips. Really enjoyed it!

Charise @ I Thought I Knew Mama

Breastfeeding is the best! It really does save so much money. One of its many, many, many perks Smile

Jenny @ I'm a full-time mummy

Hi Jennifer & Charise!
Thank you for sharing your comments and visits!

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