Monday, October 13, 2014

Weekly Spending Report: 09/28-10/04/2014

This week we didn't need a whole lot, so I just picked up the couple things we did, and spent my money on some deals at CVS and ALDI.  Here's what we ended up with...
  • Monday's Giant Trip (just 2 boxes of Tea Bags): $2.50 oop
  • Wednesday's Giant Trip (just Chips and marked down bread): $3.49 oop
  • Wednesday's CVS Trip: $32.91 oop, Earned $5 ECB's
  • Wednesday's ALDI Trip: $26.42 oop
Total OOP: $65.32
Total Earned: $15
Total Remaining for October: $234.68

31 Days of Baby Saving Tips: Day 9 - Stock-pile Baby Food

Do NOT go clear shelves of baby food, and stock years worth in bins in your basement!  Just buy what you think you'll need (on sale and with coupons), or a little more or less.  If you end up with a few extras of something your baby hates, you can always donate it to someone who needs it.  If your baby loves something you only have 3 jars of.  You can always buy more, you've still saved money by buying what you did ahead of time on sale and with a coupon.  I plan to make most of Howard's baby food, but I wanted the convenience of ready-made organic baby food for when we were out running errands or going out for dinner.  So, after he was born, I knew he'd be six month in October, which is when most breast-fed babies begin baby food.  So I started shopping for free or cheap baby food utilizing sales and coupons, and being careful to check expiration dates, so I knew the food would get eaten and not wasted.  I probably have a dozen or so pouches/jars of various types of organic baby food that I paid no more than $0.50 for, most were free or a quarter.  I continue to shop sales and use coupons to acquire more baby food, since we run errands once a week, I know I'll use at least one pouch/jar a week.  This has saved me a boat-load of money, since most pouches are about $2.30 ea, and I've only paid about a quarter a piece -- that's a 89% savings!
So, follow the sales, and use coupons to buy-ahead on your baby's food, and save money!

31 Days of Baby Saving Tips: Day 8 - Re-use Containers for Baby Cereal On-the-go

When we started feeding Howard cereal, I hadn't bought the nice baby bowls with the lids yet.  We had been at home, so it didn't matter, I just mixed his cereal up in a regular bowl, and fed him with a baby spoon (which I had bought).  So, the first day we went out to run errands during his lunch time, I knew I'd have to feed him cereal in a restaurant.  Enter the butter dish.  I save butter dishes mostly to send leftovers home when we have company for dinner, that way I don't have to worry about them being returned.  But, as I surveyed my cupboards for a cereal carrying vessel, they seemed perfect.  They would...
  1. Easily hold 3 tablespoons of cereal.
  2. Allow me to mix the cereal and feed Howard all with 1 container.
  3. I could pitch/recycle it at the restaurant and not have to bring it home to be washed (unless I wanted to).  And thus not have to worry about it leaking all over the diaper bag.  
And best of all, it was FREE!

31 Days of Baby Saving Tips: Day 7 - Save Your Baby Items for the Next One

If you plan to have more than one child, or even if you think you might, SAVE your baby items.  Now, obviously you don't need to save everything, but definitely save the items you used, and the outfits you find adorable!  My guideline is, if I used it, or I loved it, I keep it.  If I used it because I had to, but I hated it, I donated it.  Easy as that!  By re-using your baby items (not just clothing, but swings, car seats, carriers, bumbos, you name it), you are getting twice the mileage out of each item you purchased or even better, were given.  Think about how much the items you used for your first baby cost, that's about how much you would have to spend on each child you had if you bought all new things.  That's a HUGE savings, and all you have to do is store them in a corner of your attic/basement/guest room closet.  Totally worth it in my opinion, and that's saying something, since I'm a Type-A, OCD, Clutter-phobe ;-)
So, save your baby stuff and reuse it to save some MAJOR moo-lah!

31 Days of Baby Saving Tips: Day 6 - Buy Ahead on Clothes

Shop at the thrift stores, consignment stores, yard sales, and clearance racks around you.  Buy at least two sizes ahead, and store them until you need them.  Babies will always need onsies, pants, and sleepers, no matter what the season.  We would sometimes put Howard in a long sleeve onsie during the day and a fuzzy sleeper at night, in AUGUST because the air conditioning made it too cold for him to be in anything less.  Also, it's pretty easy to gauge two sizes ahead if you want to buy things like swim trunks and shorts.  I try to have a couple of each item listed below, and then we are ready regardless of the season.  My goal price is $0.50- $1 per item, with sometimes spending a little more on things like winter coats and heavy sweat shirts. 
Items to consider:
  • Short Sleeve Onsies/Pull-over Shirts
  • Long Sleeve Onsies/Pull-over Shirts
  • Jeans/Khakis/Sweat Pants (we use sweats at home, and a pair of jeans for going out)
  • Shorts
  • Cotton Sleepers
  • Fuzzy Sleepers
  • Sweat Shirts/Sweaters
  • Rain Jacket/Heavy Coat
  • Dresses/Jumpers (for the ladies)
  • Overalls (optional, but super cute!)
  • Swim Trunks (also optional)
  • Socks
  • Bibs
I've been able to buy all of these things used at my goal prices, mostly from yard sales, Good Will, and the Community Aid thrift store.  Some things with the tags still on them!  I did have to purchase some new bibs, but that's because I couldn't find enough nice ones used.  Howard is in 6 months clothes, and he is set on clothing up through 18 months for the most part.
 So buy ahead, and save money!