How do you afford it?

41 posts / 0 new
Last post
Minx_Kristi's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 5 months ago
Joined: 01/02/09
Posts: 1261
How do you afford it?

Hey ladies

Really sorry for such a random post and hope I don't offend anyone.

I just wanted to know how you survive with such large families?

I am so desperate to have a big family, but it's just no do-able.

Do you have any advice?

xx

mom2robbie's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 01/20/07
Posts: 2541

Kristie,

I don't have a big family but I came from one... some of the things my parents did..
-hand-me-downs
-buying in bulk
-family vacations were always camping
-fixed things that broke
-large garden - then canning/freezing stuff

as the kids got older they were expected to get jobs and pay for clothing and other things that weren't essentials

Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: 10/21/03
Posts: 172

It starts as a priority. I love kids, I knew I wanted a lot of them, so I behave accordingly. We make decisions monetarily with the idea of "how will this affect us if another child is born" I buy in bulk, and cook frugally. I rarely food already made because I can usually make it cheaper myself. We use hand me downs a lot.

We say no to ourselves a lot too. I might "want" this or that, but when it comes down to it we're going to make the decision that is best for our family.

Also, some may not agree with me, but with every child that we've added to our household, the blessings that have come along with that child have far outweighed any thoughts of being unable to afford them. With each additional child we've welcomed, dh has gotten a pay raise, or someone we know has been getting rid of this or that which we needed, or whatever seemed to be the things we were most in need of has all worked out. We work hard to make things work, and we are blessed with what we are in need of still.

Are we rolling in $ to afford 5 kids? No, but we have sufficient for our needs. We have a home to live in, food to eat, clothes to wear, and we even have several things that aren't necessary, but are nice to have.

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

Well, having babies for us is not a huge financial burden because we use cloth diapers and nursing, which cuts out two huge expenses. In the home, we use cloth napkins (haven't bought a package of paper napkins in over 5 years), cloth towels instead of paper towels most of the time, home cooked meals from scratch (with some pre-made items like fish sticks, chicken nuggets and frozen pizza). We don't go out to eat a lot, and when we do, we don't buy soft drinks for everyone.

All of our clothes are hand-me-downs, thrift store purchases, or clearance sale items. We live on a strict budget and don't buy things we don't need unless we budgeted for them. For instance, the kids get a small monthly allowance and are able to go to the store and buy something they want or to save up for more expensive items. We don't buy them toys, etc., except on their birthdays or Christmas.

We also go camping for vacations and take food with us to cook, though we budget some money for eating out, particularly in the event that it rains. My kids don't have cell phones. The older boys do have a computer and 2 Nintendo DS, all of which they saved up allowance money to buy.

When they get older, they will be expected to get jobs if they want to be able to buy a car, brand name clothing, etc., and to pay college expenses.

My kids don't have a lot of things that other kids have, but they are so happy and carefree, they don't feel deprived of anything.

TyrantOfTheWeek's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: 12/26/05
Posts: 1147

Hand me downs, We live in a small-ish house, Dave Ramsey-like living, no credit cards, I don't buy stuff for myself (Like, I don't *need* the latest handbags/shoes/clothes)...Things like that.

MrsSchepp's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: 12/30/06
Posts: 496

Some stuff I can think of right off the top of my head:
*no debt (this includes no credit cards and no car payments)
*none of the kids go to daycare (there would be NO way we could afford that malarky!)
*we don't use any disposable paper products (except toilet paper...lol)
*i cook from scratch (no processed convienience foods...and we eat out RARELY)

definitely very doable! Smile

boilermaker's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 2 months ago
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Yep-- like the others.

* I plan every meal and shop once/week. We only eat meat a few times/week (mostly bc I will only eat free range/organic meats and we can only afford those a times/week)
* We have a SAHP-- my dh, so no childcare costs
* We carry no debt other than our house.
* We don't have cable television
* We're resourceful-- we fix things ourselves, we do activities that are free
* We use cloth everything, like others, diapers and napkins
* Our kids aren't in 47 extra-curricular activities-- I don't think any 2 year old needs gymnastics or any 4 year old needs to play soccer-- we play with the kids ourselves and save the cash

Good luck!

Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 07/21/02
Posts: 1007

I can't really add much! You ladies have made great lists! The only one I can think of too is make things ourselves too. (I think someone had that on thier list). Right now we are making a bunk bed for our boys. It is actually costing us about the same to make as a really cheapo one (walmart quality) but it will be very sturdy and last many years and be safer.

Mommyin0406080912's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/16/08
Posts: 1644

Like everyone else said!

Budget and coupons! I try to only buy what I have a coupon for other than meat and produce! We don't buy new cars and never pay full price for clothing or toys. Garage sales, kids sales, hand me downs, thrift stores! I buy the kids all new shoes and socks and underwear but I do payless when it's buy 1 get 1 half off and you can use that on clearance shoes! But really if you budget and spend wise it all works its self out!

mandi04's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

Pretty much agree with the other ladies. Babies for us are super inexpensive because I nurse and we cloth diaper, but once they get older. The kids are limited to one extracurricular at a time and always will be. I personally think it's probably better that way anyways because I don't want them overscheduled (nor do I want to overschedule myself!).
Meal planning saves us big, I don't know, you just budget what you have. We do have two car payments and our mortgage, plus a student loan for me....I'd love to be without them but fortunately we're still comfortable where we are at with them.

turtnjay's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 10 months ago
Joined: 02/24/09
Posts: 2095

Lots of great lists here!

Honestly, reading them I am feeling like my kids (and us) are very spoiled!

with the new one we will be doing hand-me-downs, but with my older boys, they go through clothes so fast, there is no way to do that. But I do try to buy value rather then brand.

We do live like many families on here in that we have no debt, no mortgage and no car payments. Though we are still paying for DH's law school loans.

Mommyin0406080912's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/16/08
Posts: 1644

Forgot about loans grrr we don't pay anything yet other than interest. So when hubby is done with Law School we will have to pay those but that is ok we have no other debt at this time.

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

We used to have a pretty significant consumer debt, but we went on a debt payment plan and will have it paid off by the end of the year (probably sooner), which will free up an extra $600/month. We do have mortgage, car payments and student loans. (We buy used cars, though, so car payments are pretty minimal.)

We also don't have cable TV, and we have $15/month DSL internet and $10/month Netflix, so the kids have access to movies and games online. Our decision not to get cable when we moved here (7 years ago) was more about our own TV addiction than about the money, but it's still nice not to pay for it. We do pay for cell phones because I need it for work.

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

We do much the same as the others, no cable, no car payment, hand me downs, yard sales, no box mix/frozen dinners, and no paper towels and such (better for the environment too), though I do use disposable diapers. We also have a small garden, which helps in the summer/fall seasons. I buy kids clothes all year on clearance, and save them for school clothes. I shop sales for toys and save them for Christmas and birthdays, etc. I feel we still have lots of non necessities as well, cell phones, internet, aquarium membership, and we can splurge on pizza or a restaurant once a month or so as well. Smile

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

We actually budget entertainment money each week ($50/week), so we do get to take the kids out. We occasionally do a sit-down restaurant, but more frequently do fast food. I also use the money when I am out working, and we use them if we buy soft drinks. I also use it for "bribe" food for Isaiah if he's good for his therapist.

E-Koz's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 2 months ago
Joined: 02/16/11
Posts: 411

:lurk:

No one has mentioned the one thing I always think of when considering how many kids we will have: college.

ashamom27's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 7 months ago
Joined: 07/06/06
Posts: 1010

We don't have a college fund b/c with so many kids, it would be impossible to afford it.
We do a lot extra supplemental teaching at home, which as for now yielded excellent scores in school for my kids. My oldest is in high school, with his great performance at school, we think he will be offered a scholarship. We are definitely expecting him to apply for scholarships, financial aid and or loans. If we can help, we will of course, but there is no way to save enough for comfy college funds for 10 kids at this point. HTH.

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

If you're talking about college, I couldn't afford the full shebang for one kid, so it doesn't matter how many I have. If they want to go to private school, they will have to get a scholarship like I did. Otherwise, they will have to go to community college or vocational school and work their way through. Of course, I know that not all kids want to go to college, and some may choose to work for awhile or go into the military and then do college later (if at all).

MrsSchepp's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: 12/30/06
Posts: 496

I know there are 2 schools of thought on the college things, and I really don't think it is the parents job to pay for all of a child's college. My parents didn't pay for mine and I in know way expected them to!! Mine all have college funds that will pay for some of their schooling and we will help them with payments and such when they get there but after that, they will have to cover the rest with scholarships, grants, and even loans if needed. I don't really think the norm is for parents to pay for their kid's entire college...at least around here and with the people I associate with it's not Smile

I know for others, it is something they feel the need to do and that is fine too. But not anything we ever planned on doing, not even if we would have only had 1.

mandi04's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

I'm with Heidi, I am one of two kids and my brother never went to college but I still never expected (nor did I ever receive) any help paying for college. I still have student loans. That is one thing I WILL teach my kids about because I feel like I was very uninformed when I got those loans...but anyways. I don't feel as a parent it's my responsibility to pay for college. Knowing my parents weren't going to pay for college never detered me, they simply told me to work my butt off and get scholarships Wink I also finished all my high school credits early and in the school I was in they would allow you to take college courses that the school payed for while you were still enrolled in high school so I took advantage of that. There are ways to make it less expensive and I don't expect my kids will all go to universities, though if they do that's great too.

Mommyin0406080912's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/16/08
Posts: 1644

Asha- In Ohio they have that kids college savings plan that you can even get a tax deduction up to 2,000 a year per kid! It's ran by the state of Ohio its really neat we have an account for each child plus hubbys grandmother has all the kids in the gerber grow up insurance thing.

Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 07/21/02
Posts: 1007

We have some money saved up as a "college" fund, but it is not child specific, just extra funds to help, but like others, I got $0 from my parents for college. I worked hard in school and got scholarships and grants, dh did the same, and his parents helped here and there where he might need some for books etc. He also had a few loans we paid off after college. We both worked throughout our college careers to pay for school and other expenses. And lived like poor college students! (aka, Ramen noodles!)

Broodymama's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: 05/29/11
Posts: 198

"viiolet" wrote:

It starts as a priority. I love kids, I knew I wanted a lot of them, so I behave accordingly. We make decisions monetarily with the idea of "how will this affect us if another child is born" I buy in bulk, and cook frugally. I rarely food already made because I can usually make it cheaper myself. We use hand me downs a lot.

We say no to ourselves a lot too. I might "want" this or that, but when it comes down to it we're going to make the decision that is best for our family.

Also, some may not agree with me, but with every child that we've added to our household, the blessings that have come along with that child have far outweighed any thoughts of being unable to afford them. With each additional child we've welcomed, dh has gotten a pay raise, or someone we know has been getting rid of this or that which we needed, or whatever seemed to be the things we were most in need of has all worked out. We work hard to make things work, and we are blessed with what we are in need of still.

Are we rolling in $ to afford 5 kids? No, but we have sufficient for our needs. We have a home to live in, food to eat, clothes to wear, and we even have several things that aren't necessary, but are nice to have.

This is us exactly! We have 3 kids but are trying for another. I'm a SAHM and we homeschool. My husband works really hard but he only has 1 job. I'm only mentioning this because the idea that to have 3+ kids while mommy stays home means daddy must have 2 jobs is a pretty common assumption people make. Anyway, he doesn't make a ton but we make it work. We also have no credit cards and we buy most of our produce at a local, organic-growing farm. We don't buy processed foods (try not to) and I raise chickens.

If you WANT more kids, you WILL find a way to make it work. If there's a will, there's a way. That's absolutely true. When you start comparing what's necessary with what's just nice to have, you figure out that you really do live with a lot of nice things. As for us, we have a large flat screen TV with HD satellite, high speed DSL, an iPad, cell phones, Wii, not to mention curriculum is NOT cheap... I mean, we're not exactly living like we're suffering or missing out on the fun things in life, kwim? You can do it.

Like someone else said, we use cloth diapers and breastfeed (ok, ME, not WE on that one). I cut out most of the paper-products from our lives a while back. Since we use cloth diapers, I have an unending amount of cloths for cleaning. In fact, and this IS a little extreme, I will admit, we're about to go to family cloth. That's where you use cloth instead of toilet paper but I'm only going to insist on it for pee, not poo. I mean, I have a load of diapers ready at the end of the day anyhow. I might as well throw in some more cloth to make a full load. OK, I'm getting off the point. lol That's not for everyone but with 3 girls in the house, it totally kills the TP supply really quickly. lol

Start paying attention to the things you could give up for the sake of adding a new member to your family. I'll bet you find a lot! Lots of hugs and good luck to you!!! :bigarmhug:

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

As to college, I would love to help each kid out a bit, but just that, a bit. I think it helps kids appreciate and work harder in school when it is their hard earned dollars paying for it. My kids know to work hard now (even though only in kindy and 2nd grade) to get scholarships. They have young aunts and uncles (13-22+) and the three in college right now are all there on scholarships, and my kids know this. Smile Though it is more of a concern for my dh. My FIL has 8 children and 5 steps. I do not know how much he helped out the steps (though I am sure at least a little) but he is super frugal and also made decent money, and he gave each of his kids (at least the three from my dh's family, the other 5 from his 2nd family) a good amount of money, but it was up to them on what to spend it on. Ours mostly went on a down payment for our house. My dh wants to do this for each of our children as well... and I would love to, but not a HUGE priority for me. Wink

E-Koz's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 2 months ago
Joined: 02/16/11
Posts: 411

:thanks: I think I need to go thank my parents for paying for my college education. I am apparently in the minority on this one and feeling pretty grateful right about now. With my family it was always "I'll pay for your school, but any grad school is on you." So, my Dad paid for college b/c he wanted me to be able to start my adult life debt free. That being said....I went on to private law school so I shot that whole "no debt" thing dead pretty quick! ha!

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

I wanted to add that our decision to go "paperless" (mostly) was an environmental one rather than financial. We reduced our trash to one can per week for the 7 of us, and sometimes that's not even full. (Nobody mentioned this yet, but I use a Diva instead of paper/plastic feminine products. I find it more comfortable and more convenient as well as economical.)

boilermaker's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 2 months ago
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

We have college funds for our kids and we fund them annually. That said, we also pay an extra $300/ month towards our mortgage- knowing that it will knock off 10+ years of our mortgage-- so our house will be paid off by the time our kids are entering college.

Like others, we plan to help our kids pay for school but not give them a free ride. I saw so many friends drink their free ride down the drain bc they had nothing invested in it....I think it teaches kids something to have to pay for an education themselves.....and I work at a university, so if my kids choose they can attend here for a very large discount. If they want to go somewhere else, then they can foot that bill themselves....

I also don't think college is for everyone. My dh would have been much better off going to a trade school or apprenticeship, but nobody gave him that option and he was shuttled off to college. Though he graduated, I think he really would have been happier doing something else....

Broodymama's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: 05/29/11
Posts: 198

"2sonsplus1" wrote:

I wanted to add that our decision to go "paperless" (mostly) was an environmental one rather than financial. We reduced our trash to one can per week for the 7 of us, and sometimes that's not even full. (Nobody mentioned this yet, but I use a Diva instead of paper/plastic feminine products. I find it more comfortable and more convenient as well as economical.)

Ditto the Diva Cup.

Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: 10/21/03
Posts: 172

"Broodymama" wrote:

Ditto the Diva Cup.

You can add me to that bandwagon as well Smile

We too feel that the kids can work hard and earn scholarships/grant money for college. I intend to be able to help them along IF we feel that they've put in the work to deserve the help. My parents didn't pay for my college, and dh's didn't pay for his... Somehow, we both made it through school and we only ended up with loans for dh. I know that my kids appreciate the things they earn more than what's simply given to them, and the same thing applies to college funding. To me it's not an issue in deciding how many kids to have. What is an issue, is feeding/clothing/housing/transporting them. And as I said in my last post, those things have somehow fallen into place every time we've accepted a new baby into our home.

MrsSchepp's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: 12/30/06
Posts: 496

Another Diva Cup user here Smile And yes, our choice to go paper free was more environmental and the money saving part is just an added bonus!

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

As to the diva cup... I've thought about it but been hesitant because my flow is SOOOO heavy. Like tampon and pads for at least a few days of my cycle... so anyone have super heavy cycles that uses the cup? How messy is it to remove? I know, maybe TMI questions. Smile

But yes, the paperless at our house was also for environmental reasons (though not ready to do cloth yet, maybe with a single baby lol), so eliminating all the female stuff would be nice too. Smile

turtnjay's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 10 months ago
Joined: 02/24/09
Posts: 2095

Yeah, the diva cup scares me. I am a paper product kind of girl when it comes to bathroom activities. Blush

As for college, I got lots of ggrants that covered my tuition. My parents did help my sister out, though.

We paid for my oldest sons tuition the first semester but he decided to waste it so he had to pay for this last semester. He has to carry a 3.0 before we'll consider paying for it again. He paid for this upcoming semester, too. I hope it's making appreciate where the money comes from and how it and his time are used.

mandi04's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

I've wanted to use the Diva Cup, but I think I finally made up my mind to use it right before I got pregnant with DS1...and I haven't had AF since my LMP with him (got pregnant with this baby before getting AF back after DS) If this baby is anything like my others I'll be surprised if I get AF back before late 2012/early 2013...but at THAT point Lol I want to try the Diva Cup.
I don't think I have it in me to do family cloth for the bathroom, but we don't really use paper towels anymore and everyone in our family has their own water bottle. We bring them places all the time which is nice because then we aren't buying tons of bottles of water/soda/juice on the go.
Pretty much everything is trying to save money. In the end I'm not sure exactly how much it saves. Maybe not a ton (we do use sposies at night so we're still buying them, but a $5 pack lasts a month) but any little bit is fine with me. I have a hard time buying anything at full price Lol DH and I were broke when we were first married (we are much more comfortable financially now with #4 on the way than we were when we had 1 and 2 kids) so a lot of those old habits I still have. I find it helps me to add up as I'm grocery shopping how much I'm spending (I use my cell phone's calculator), it keeps me aware as I'm shopping. Oh and we don't have a house phone, though dh is talking about doing the Magic Jack thing (which is really cheap) once the kids are a little older, so far our almost 7 year old doesn't talk on the phone other than the occasional hi to the grandparents.

Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: 10/21/03
Posts: 172

"rachelrazzle" wrote:

As to the diva cup... I've thought about it but been hesitant because my flow is SOOOO heavy. Like tampon and pads for at least a few days of my cycle... so anyone have super heavy cycles that uses the cup? How messy is it to remove? I know, maybe TMI questions. Smile

But yes, the paperless at our house was also for environmental reasons (though not ready to do cloth yet, maybe with a single baby lol), so eliminating all the female stuff would be nice too. Smile

I had really heavy, long cycles before I started using the diva. Now my cycles are still heavy, but not as heavy as they were. They're also not as long as they were, AND I don't cramp as much as I used to. My flow gets heavy fast, stays heavy for 1-2 days, and then goes away entirely. No more of the light flow for another 3-4 days after heavy for 2-3. For me it makes a HUGE difference in how I feel. I also use cloth instead of paper pads when I do use pads which my body likes much better.

Broodymama's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: 05/29/11
Posts: 198

Nancy, there's a reason for that! To make tampons and pads super absorbent, they use a chemical that actually makes you bleed more. Most women who go to the Diva Cup or cloth pads go from ridiculously heavy cycles to light, 3 day cycles. Before Diva, I was having 9 day cycles and would soak a pad every hour. Tampons... HAH. Forget it. lol I'm down to a 3 day cycle now and it's AWESOME. I don't really dread AF now except that we're TTC and she's a fat bummer of a hag in the first place. lol Anyway, thought I would share. Biggrin

ETA: Cycles=periods. Too lazy to really edit. I hope you knew what I meant. LOL

Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

Mandy, I didn't know that. I have a Diva and have always wanted some cloth pads (have a liner that I absolutely love) but have not gotten around to actually buying some. Now I have another reason.

Broodymama's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: 05/29/11
Posts: 198

Deb, I found cloth when I ordered some organic nursing pads and she threw in a cloth liner for free! How funny! Maybe that's the gateway pad? LOL When I read about that chemical, it all made total sense to me and I switched. My next step is getting a full supply of cloth pads. I can't use tampons anyhow since having kids (it's ouchy now) and I love the Diva Cup but sometimes I have the same issue as tampons. I think I'm just going to use pads and be done with it.

Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: 10/21/03
Posts: 172

"Broodymama" wrote:

Nancy, there's a reason for that! To make tampons and pads super absorbent, they use a chemical that actually makes you bleed more. Most women who go to the Diva Cup or cloth pads go from ridiculously heavy cycles to light, 3 day cycles. Before Diva, I was having 9 day cycles and would soak a pad every hour. Tampons... HAH. Forget it. lol I'm down to a 3 day cycle now and it's AWESOME. I don't really dread AF now except that we're TTC and she's a fat bummer of a hag in the first place. lol Anyway, thought I would share. Biggrin

ETA: Cycles=periods. Too lazy to really edit. I hope you knew what I meant. LOL

Lol Smile I knew that Smile Just was too lazy to type it all. I'm a poster child for it haha... also, may be tmi, but I ALWAYS got yeast infections during af with paper pads. No more with the diva/cloth.

Hopefully af will take a nice LONG vacation for you!

Broodymama's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: 05/29/11
Posts: 198

"viiolet" wrote:

Hopefully af will take a nice LONG vacation for you!

Gosh, me, too! It's looking good but we'll see. Biggrin

Ditto on the yeast infections. It seems that anything out of the norm gives me one. UGH. Such sensitive bits. Blah! :rolleyes:

Minx_Kristi's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 5 months ago
Joined: 01/02/09
Posts: 1261

I completely forgot I made this post!

Thank you so much ladies for answering my questions and being so honest about how you all live. I guess it is do-able, for most people. I think my main issues would be the fact that we rent..... it is so hard to buy property where I live as it's mega expensive and then on top of that I would have to pay childcare for each child. I wanted to have another when my DD starts school and although I won't be paying full time childcare, I would still have to pay childcare when the kids are out of school on holidays and a smaller baby, childcare costs more!

Right now isn't the right time for me to have another baby anyway - but I will sit down and work it all out after reading how you guys do it Smile

xx

WonderWomanExtrodinare's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: 05/26/07
Posts: 1192

I agree with the others--
cloth diapers, nurse my baby, we have little to no debt-- house is paid for, my van is paid for, dh's car was paid for but he just had to buy a new one, we use hand-me-downs or second-hand clothes/furniture, no paper plates or napkins, and we say no to a lot of the stuff we "want", too. we also live in a small home, we cut lights off, don't waste electricity if we can help it. i stay home with the kids and really don't go out much but to take them to school so during the summer, we save a ton on gas as hubby is a teacher.