So you have a baby now…

More information and full disclosure here.

Let’s face it, we all have certain things that we can’t resist buying. My biggest temptation? Baby stuff. Clothes, toys, the works. I have terrible trouble keeping from buying something shiny and new for my one-year-old daughter. And looking at it now, I can see just how much it begins racking up and cleaning out the good old pocket-book. As tempting as it can be to pick up everything that you know your baby will love, there are many things to take into consideration. Firstly, babies are expensive. They need a crib, and diapers, and clothes, and baby food and formula if that’s what they’re being fed. They need baby gates and door locks and those little foam guards that keep them from pinching their fingers in hinges of doors. They need books and music and all kinds of different things to help with their development. Baby Tylenol, toothbrushes, and everything else.

So how do I cut corners? It’s easy, really. I try not to shop for baby stuff anywhere that I have to pay full price for anything.

There are always places to be found where you can find practically brand new clothes and toys for your little ones. My personal favorites are junk stores. Why do they call them junk stores? No idea, because I always find things that I can safely say is FAR from junk, and they’re usually practically new. Babies rarely ever wear things that many times before they’ve completely outgrown them, so it isn’t as if most baby clothes will be that worn. Stains? The great thing is, bleach still works wonders on stains, even on certain soft toys.

Aside from junk stores, I enjoy checking out the Good Will in my area to see what they have available. There’s tons to choose from there (both for baby and for myself!). The Dollar Generals or Family Dollars in my area very frequently have baby stuff on sale too, so I buy there frequently. In fact, several days ago, I was able to buy six sets of clothes for a little over $7 at Dollar General! So you really never know what you’ll find. Be sure to check out your local dollar stores for end-of-season sales!

You can also find many clothes and toys on Amazon for next to nothing. Amazon has baby clothes for 75% off the original price, in fact!

So it boils down to this. Don’t pay outrageous prices on things for the baby. Just because they’re “new” doesn’t mean they’re any better than something slightly used that you can find for a much better price somewhere else! Shop smart and keep your eyes open for great sales! You never know what you’ll find.

There’s another wonderful way to cut corners. And that is, don’t buy toys at all! Babies are fascinated with the strangest things and will play with almost anything, given the chance. So the next time you get a huge package in the mail, don’t throw away that cardboard box! That could be your son or daughter’s next car or spaceship. My daughter loves silicone kitchen utensils, and plays with them all the time! Sometimes, she’d much rather have something like that than the toys we buys specifically for her, in fact. Plush toys? Who needs that when your kiddo can play with the pillows sitting on the couch? Mine drags them into the floor and plays with them all the time.

At the end of the day, if you can save $50 or more on clothes and toys for the little one, why not?

Let us know about how you save money…on the kids or on yourself!