I have been thinking up a list of ways parents can save money for days now and when an idea has popped in my head it has gone down on my notes page on my iphone right away. I actually lost some sleep one night composing ideas in my head. #trueblogger/writer.
Here is what I came up with:
- you know those kids that cry and have a meltdown over not getting crackers, candy or cookies bought at the store? well what most of the local grocery stores do here is offer samples of fruit/cheese/crackers/sometimes sushi but the best stores are the ones that offer cookies in a cookie jar. Problem solved! I don’t know if wally world (Wal-Mart) or Target does this but it doesn’t hurt to ask. But it keeps your kids from wanting you to have to buy something then that they don’t need.
- Ask about fee waivers or scholarships for recreational events if you are a struggling financially as a family or have children from foster care/big family. My kids have received scholarships for various recreational events. Nevaeh took dance last year and we requested a scholarship and she received one. That is $600 plus dollars we didn’t have to pay. All we had to get was the costumes, tights, leotards, tap and ballet shoes. My aunt-in-law stated that sometimes Girl scouts waive joining fees if you request it (depending on the troop) and our babies are on a scholarship with their infant- toddler music class.
- Use coupons when shopping but only if you know you get that product a lot and everyone likes it.
- look for GREAT sales like this one at our local Kroger the other day. Buy 3 boxes of certain cereals for $6 get a free gallon milk. Ummmm hello a steal right there. That’s normally a $12-$15 value. I found the appls marked down to $1.
- ask around for hand-me-down clothing for kids or shop at yard sales/consignment shops/thrift shops.
- sometimes we have found our little tikes toys/toys in general on the side of the road (bulk trash) cleaned them up with bleach and other cleaners and just reused them.
- shop for clothing/school items on tax free weekend (if your state/stores participate)
- join SAMS club for bulk items you know you need a lot of but buy way too often elsewhere (diapers, toilet paper, etc).
- go to McDonalds with playgrounds on Sundays and buy $.50 hamburgers or $.60 cheeseburgers.
- look for restaurants with free kids meal nights (usually crafts go on too).
- have a picnic at a park with a playground.
- some local gyms offer discounts based on family size or income bracket.
- cloth diapers for babies (this has been a life saver for us when we didn’t have disposable diapers on hand or the money for diapers). Yes cloth diapers are more work, but save on money and the environment.
- cook a lot of your meals, trying to use ingredients you have on hand.
- do DIY cakes, foods, decorations, games for Birthday parties. We did a DIY of a maypole and castles made of brown refrigeration boxes for Nevaehs medieval themed birthday party last year (there were like 15 plus kids so we were glad we didn’t spend a lot on a big Birthday party otherwise).
There are probably hundreds of ways to save money that I am missing. That is where you come in.
What do you do to save money with kids? what do you do to save money in general?