Guest post from Alicia of Turquoise Grace:
So, you thought only girls were expensive to raise?
So did I!
I have always been told, and honestly always thought, that raising girls was where it hurts your wallet the most. However, as a mom of three (soon to be four!) boys, I’m here to tell you this is not necessarily the case.
First off, I love being a boy-mom. They are fun, energetic, and so, so sweet. I have a very special bond with all three of them, and it warms my heart so much.
But, yes. Boys are expensive, too!
Raising children in general is definitely not cheap, but I was caught off guard with the realization that boys in particular bring with them their own special type of expenses. Between eating habits (especially the older they get), clothing they rip through, sports and extracurricular activities, it can really add up.
So here are a few things I have learned in an effort to save money on raising these precious boys…
1.Shop in bulk as much as possible.
I have tried many a time to limit snacks and curb eating habits, but it never lasts for long. The fact of the matter is – boys love to eat. And the older they get this only becomes more true.
That’s why shopping in bulk not only saves us so much money since we are able to buy lots of the same thing (hello milk, bread and cereal, anyone?) but it also makes life much more convenient.
If I plan carefully, I can usually get away with bulk shopping every other week. This often means less trips to the store, less temptation to buy, and overall less money spent. Win-win!
2. Utilize hand-me-downs.
Having multiple boys has a unique benefit – assuming the clothes make it that long, each subsequent child can wear the older child’s clothing.
For each of my babies, this has been a lifesaver. I have hardly had to buy any baby or toddler clothing, supplies, strollers, and more due to the fact that we already had everything we needed.
We were able to save some serious cash just by previously saving what we already owned!
3. Repair ripped jeans, shoes, or other clothing items when possible.
If your boys are anything like mine, there’s a good chance they most likely don’t have any pants withOUT holes!
To remedy this, you can always try to patch the knees or reinforce knees with patches underneath to give them an extra sturdy layer of protection.
In the past, I have also re-sewn torn off Velcro buckles on otherwise usable shoes just to get more life out of them.
4. Participate in free outdoor activities.
Extra-curricular activities can really add up cost-wise. And when you’re already living on a tight budget, you may not have the extra cash laying around to shell out for multiple league fees every season for multiple boys. (I am already wondering how we’re going to handle this when all FOUR of our boys are playing sports at the same time!)
Better yet, especially for younger boys, take advantage of any free activities. Check your newspaper listings, community Facebook groups, and your local library for fun, free activities to do with your boys that can simultaneously entertain and wear them out!
5. Don’t bother investing in the expensive toys just yet.
Why spend a bajillion dollars on the latest gadget or trendy toy when you know your toddler is going to enjoy the wrapping paper, bow, and cardboard box just as much, if not more, than the toy itself?
My son just recently turned 2 and we held a small family birthday party for him. We did purchase two small toys for him, but his favorite toy? Yes, it was the $1 light up ball his Great-Grandma got him. Lesson learned!
6. Make your own snacks from scratch.
With a little extra effort, you can save tons of money by making your own snacks for your hungry boys!
My boys love any type of homemade granola balls. And I love them, too! They are healthy, filling, and easily made with ingredients you most likely already have. They are also inexpensive and quick to throw together.
I also love making homemade bread in my bread machine. It’s very cheap and easy to make, I always have all the ingredients, but most of all – it keeps them full!
Now obviously these tips aren’t just for moms of boys – I am sure they can also apply to raising girls, too. But if you have a boy in the house, I am certain a few of these points can save you a little money, both now and in the long run!
What are some things you do to save money raising your kiddos?
Meet Alicia. Jesus Follower, wife to an amazing guy, and boy-mom of three (almost four!). She’s also a coffee lover, avid reader, chocolate addict, and self-proclaimed health enthusiast. Alicia’s single most greatest passion is raising Godly men. She blogs at Turquoise Grace, where she offers practical tips, solutions, and encouragement for moms regarding all things raising boys.