What do you mean you can’t afford to stay home with your kids? Sorry, I don’t believe it. I used to believe, but not anymore. Here are some helpful tips and major life changing strategies to allow you the power to stay home with your kids.
I used to think we needed a second car. You really don’t. Right there, look at all the money you save. Look at your monthly budget and subtract a car payment, insurance, gas, and maintenance. WOW. That is a nice chunk of change right there.
Maybe you need to ease into it? Okay, let’s look at your grocery bill. Do you use coupons, if not, why? Buy things in bulk. Look at prices. Shop at warehouse places like Sam’s and you can save hundreds of dollars on your grocery bill per year. I know you don’t NEED 20 pounds of hamburger right now, but when you can buy it for the same price of 10 pounds wrapped in individually, then it is worth it! Buy generic whenever possible. Don’t be a snob, try it out. 95% of the time, they taste the same. The only generic things I won’t buy are paper products and lasagna noodles. For some reason, those just aren’t as good. Find what you like and you can save hundreds of dollars here.
What about vacations? Do you fly to Disneyworld each year? Get real. What do you think will make a bigger impact on your children in the long run, the fact that you blew a ridiculous amount of money to take a 4 day vacation, or that you were there for them, day after day, week after week, smile after smile, tear after tear? This summer we scraped and saved and scrimped and we are driving to Canada to go fishing for a week. Living on one income doesn’t mean you can’t live well. You just live different.
As for general entertainment, instead of expensive movie theaters and fast food joints, go buy a kite and make sandwiches and have a picnic in the park. Go for a walk. Ride your bike through the park. Go to art galleries, museums and zoos. Most of these are free or have family discount days.
With cutting back a little in your daily routines, and making major changes like cutting out a vehicle, you CAN stay home with your kids. Now with the internet, computers and technology, there are a lot of legitimate work at home mom jobs as well if you really need extra money to get by. Check out http://www.wahm.com for a list.
Obviously, I am referring to two income families here, so please don’t write asking “What about single moms?” For single moms, there are lots of other careers that can be done at home. Home child care is the first to come to mind. Check out our Providers section for more info on starting a home child care.
Until next time…