Southern Belle Magazine May 2013, Issue 1 - Page 100

B udg et i ng B E FO R E B A BY We all know 6 weeks with your sweet baby is one thing we all look forward too at the end of a long hot pregnancy. We also know unless you have stockpiled vacation time, or can file short-term disability, the typical 2-3 weeks paid time off make you look forward to that first full paycheck back to work. The first few months with a new baby can be a budget shocker. Planning ahead is essential to keep the shock to a minimum. Start Saving Money: Always an obvious. Cut what you can, your Friday afternoon margarita is a good start…you can’t drink it anyways! Put that little extra aside. Your Friday nights are about to take a toll so this would be a good opportunity to save now and reap the benefits later versus play catch up. You’ll be glad when you need a new tire on week 4 of maternity leave, or those constant trips to the store for things you thought you wouldn’t need. Buy Essentials: I set an allowance of $30.00 a month with my 2nd child for diapering products WHILE I was pregnant. I buy my diapers through Amazon.com and have them automatically shipped. Start with size 2s and 3s; keep in consideration that if you are being thrown a shower, you will most likely get newborns and size 1s as gifts. If you are concerned about your baby possibly being sensitive to specific brands, you can start with stocking up on sensitive diaper wipes, a tube of rash cream here and there or baby shampoo. Dont F for Cute Clothes: Admit it, baby clothes are adorable. You all could easily spend $100s on a wardrobe that will last only 3 months. If you are having a shower, you will get clothes. With my 2nd child, a girlfriend and I swapped baby clothes. I had a girl first and she had a boy first. We found ourselves pregnant with our seconds at the same time, only this time I had a boy, and she a girl. We swapped pink for blue and neither of us had to do any extra spending! If you must shop, which I admit, I must. Give consignments a chance. I bought a bag full of Baby Gap and Gymboree at a consignment shop recently for just $27! T ake Advantage of Baby Clubs: Several grocery stores like Publix and Winn Dixie have baby clubs that will send you coupons for dicounts and free products to help welcome your new baby. Some stores will give you gifts and gift cards for registering with them. If you are military be sure to check the your Base Exchange shop. 14