Ok, it’s a new month, better yet its a new year! What better way to kick off 2012 than by looking at your finances and figuring out more ways to save. The last few months for our family haven’t been “normal”. Christmas doesn’t count because that comes up every year, but with a new baby being born in September, additional expenses have come up relating to her specifically (diapers, clothing, another person to buy Christmas gifts for) and indirectly (exhausted moms tend to drink more coffee and pick up takeout more often for dinner). So it is up to me to see where we can save a few bucks.
Clothing: We all received lots of new clothes for Christmas which was great, but baby girl is still going to need more since infants grow like weeds. Of course I went out and bought her new stuff when she was first born, but now it’s all gotta be second hand (unless it is a gift giving occasion). I cannot wait to hit up the second hand stores and search for cute baby girl clothes! The boy sections are always picked over and in rough shape, but the little girls stuff always seems to be more plentiful and newer. I have already managed to score 4 Carters undershirts for 99 cents each, and they were in near perfect condition! Sure beats paying full price!
Food: The obvious place to start with food is to cut back on eating out. Not only is it a way to save money, but it is so much healthier too. I have been doing just fine with grocery shopping and meal planning, but there is always room for improvement. Maybe I should get back into using some coupons, though I found I only saved a little money when buying national brands (we prefer store brands sometimes), and maybe I could start making bread again since that is super easy, tastes better, and is usually healthier too!
General saving tips and tricks: I used to read frugal blogs all the time, it was basically all I used the computer for. For some reason over the past few months I having been skipping over their Facebook updates and tweets about new posts. I must get back into the routine of reading them regularly (two of my favs are Simply Frugal and Mrs. January). They mostly post about coupons and sales but they also offer up great tips and links to other sites with great tips.
Diapers: This is the big one right now. Our son is 27 months old, and not really showing signs of wanting to potty train yet (hopefully in the next 6 months or so. fingers crossed). He is in cloth diapers all day long, and in disposables at night. Little miss 3 months old is in disposables FULL TIME! Someone smack me please! I cannot believe it either. The reasons?They aren’t very good….she is sort of between sizes right now. I had her in newborn sized cloth diapers that my cousin made and sent to me (Thanks Allison!!) but they don’t fit her anymore, and the next size up are still a little big and kinda bulky. This is not a good enough reason for me though, because I had my son in cloth diapers full-time when he was her age, and he was skinnier than she is. I don’t know what is stopping me, maybe I don’t want her to suddenly outgrow some super cute outfits? It really only impacts her pants fitting, and this way I can put her in more dresses, it might even help her clothes fit better since she is so short and round, most stuff is too long for her. We also keep stock piling disposables whenever they go on sale, which make me think that it is OK to keep using them. I think it will also be hard for me to not buy all new diaper covers in pinks and purples too, cloth diapering is an addiction after all, especially on a cute little girly newborn bum.
Do You have any frugal plans for the New Year?