10 Ways Having Children Saves You Money


Let’s say you are seriously considering taking the plunge into parenthood. Perhaps you have already done something stupid like gotten yourself or your partner knocked up. (Sucker.) Certainly, doing what’s best for your child is your top priority. However, like nearly every other parent faced with this decision, your mind quickly shifts to finances:

Can we afford a baby?

It’s a question you will fearfully ponder for months. Perhaps you’ll make spreadsheets. Perhaps you and your partner will decide what little luxuries or conveniences you are willing to sacrifice. But, have no fear: Having children might actually SAVE you money! How?

1. TOILETRIES: Once you become a parent, you will seldom have a free minute to shower and brush your teeth, let alone use deodorant, a razor, deep conditioning treatments, or beauty balm. You can count on using only about 1/8 of any personal hygiene products you used as a well-groomed, fully functional member of society once baby arrives. Less if you have multiples.

2. CLOTHING: The next time you actually need well-made, tailored clothing will be the kid’s graduation or your own funeral; whichever occurs first. Until said time, you will rotate the same four pairs of yoga pants and six tee-shirts for EVERYTHING, EVERYDAY. You will exercise in them. You will spend the day in them. At night you will put on a fresh set and sleep in them.

Even if you return to work outside of the home, you will wear machine washable, wrinkle resistant clothing. You will no longer have any need for dry-cleaners, tailors, or even accessories. Sure, one day you new mommies might slip into a pair of pre-pregnancy jeans and a nice silk blouse in an attempt to pull yourself out of the emotionally draining, life-sucking vortex that is motherhood. Then, the kid will puke  on you and you will NEVER make that mistake again.

3. HOUSEHOLD MAINTENANCE AND DECOR: Your house WILL be TRASHED. It doesn’t matter if you have one baby or triplets; if you have a boy or a girl. Your house will look like shit by the time your little bundle of joy celebrates their first birthday: Baby gates, toys, yogurt splatters, vomit, poop on the baseboard moulding, fingerprints… EVERYWHERE! You will no longer have the time or energy to trawl your favorite stores for charming household decor or fabulous surround sound system upgrades. Resign yourself to the fact that you will likely just wait for the kid to turn 18, burn whatever is left, and start over.

4. SOCIAL LIFE: Pre-baby, did you have routine happy hours with friends or colleagues from work? Did you have brunch and get a mani with a girlfriend every Sunday morning? Did you play golf twice a week? Did you enjoy movies or concerts with your partner? Fancy dinners at the “hottest” restaurants? DONE. Slash that healthy, happy, relaxing “me-time” shit from your budget. It ain’t happenin.’

5.  ENTERTAINMENT & HOBBIES: Do you enjoy TV, using the phone, reading books or magazines? Maybe you love watching movies in bed? Embroidery? Stamp Collecting? Painting? Baking? I’m sorry to break it to you but you might as well just cut the budget for your personal entertainment and hobbies to near. You’re not going to have ANY time to use the phone, watch TV, read magazines or books. Cancel your landline. Cancel the premium cable package. Cut your magazine subscriptions by three-quarters.

6. SEX: If prior to conceiving you were using birth control, you can save your money after the baby arrives because the baby is the birth control. The crying, the feeding, the sleepless nights. Heaven really help you if you choose to co-sleep.

7. FOOD & DINING: For months, you don’t want to take the newborn into a crummy restaurant where s/he could come in contact with the filthy public. Shortly thereafter, you don’t want to subject the filthy public or crummy restaurant staff to your raging toddler.

But what about cooking fresh organic meals at home? We want to serve our baby only the best quality food and that can be expensive.

Trust me, after your kid goes on hunger strike and refuses to eat anything that is NOT orange or heavily salted for three weeks straight, you won’t give a damn. You’ll feed your kid ANYTHING, even if it’s canned soup and generic potato chips.

8. TRAVEL: BAH-HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!  It’s hard enough to get across town. I DARE you to book a week-long vacation. Good luck, sucka!  Traveling with children sucks. It’s a waste of money. Trust me, stay home and be miserable. It’s way more cost-effective.

9. THE MAID: I’m sure a lot of you dual income, no child folks have some sort of help in the housekeeping department.  Perhaps you have a cleaning service that comes on a periodic basis to do the heavy lifting – vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, etc while you and your significant other are busy jetting off to some fabulous location for the weekend. After kids?  NO MORE HOUSEKEEPING! It will save you a mint! Scheduling a time for someone to come into your home and run the vacuum is nearly impossible with a baby’s erratic sleep schedule. Once the child is older, your home will such a disgusting disaster you won’t even want a PROFESSIONAL CLEANING SERVICE to see it! You might not be convinced yet, but trust me, the first time you catch yourself pre-cleaning – scraping chunks of snot and yogurt off the appliances, desperately searching for huge crumbs in corners so obscure the dog couldn’t even locate them – you’ll realize the maid is an unnecessary expenditure. The house will only remain clean for approximately 30 seconds anyway.

However, should you happen to be a bit of a neat freak, never fear! Kids = free labor! You might be able to get some help with the housekeeping if you convince them cleaning is a game. Their tiny little hands are perfect for picking crumbs off the carpet. Make it a counting game! Kids love novelty. Give them a stupid-looking hat and a toilet brush and see what happens… Sure, 7 out of 10 times they will probably try to brush the cat or their own teeth with it, but 30% of the time, they might actually clean the damn toilet.

10. TAXES: Everyone knows kids are a HUGE tax deduction. The more you have, the more tax deductions you get.  It’s as if you get paid by the government to procreate! What are we waiting for?!

There you have it: 10 extremely useful ways having children actually SAVES you money! I hope you found it helpful.   Now, go edit your spreadsheets! Maybe you’ll even find a few extra pennies for some cheap booze or a lottery ticket! If not now, just wait for your next tax return.

Related post: 28 Reasons Kids Are Awesome

About the writer

Deni Lyn Miller is a married, stay at home mother of one who is desperately attempting to cling to her last remaining shreds of dignity.  When she's not spewing humorous snark and content of questionable taste across the Internet on Twitter and her blog The Diary of a Reluctant Mother, she enjoys birding, reading, spending time with her family, and making a mess out of most situations.


Thera 1 year ago

So funny!
We just moved to a new town and as my kids are now in their teens, there isn’t as many opportunities to meet other moms or people. So my daughter had a friend sleep over and I took the opportunity to ask the mom to stay for coffee when she came to pick up their daughter. Two of my kids actually asked me why I would bother to do that and when I replied “to make a friend” their chins dropped and one actually said “but Mom, I thought you didn’t like having friends”

Cinner 1 year ago

1-9 are absolutely hilarious!

Although I hate to get political – I really dislike #10. I dont think the government should be providing incentives to pro-create under any circumstances.

J Lynn LP 2 years ago

At first i thought it was a little humorous but i read on and i actually cant believe how negative it is. I dont agree with most of what is said here and think whoever wrote it may have some personal issues for how harsh it sounds.. This is a terrible post for new parents or people that want kids. I mean everything isnt all hunky dory perfect and yes many things change but i think this post is terrible..

Eva Nicole Tabron 2 years ago

I only relate to #8… Only because plane tickets are crazy expensive. But driving isn’t bad. I have 3 kids… I think I’d lose it if this list were true… Good laugh tho

Eva Nicole Tabron 2 years ago


Shalita First-Lady Ford 2 years ago


Cathy Prather Berens 2 years ago

I love this….honest truth, but the butterfly kisses are worth it…

Paula Gruben 2 years ago

Tax deductions? Pfft. I wish. No such luck here in South Africa. No wonder people in the States have such big families. There is NO way we could afford more than 1.

Le Flaneur 2 years ago


Jennifer Richardson 2 years ago

This is depressing!

Renée Simon 2 years ago

Hilarity!!! Lol

Danijay 2 years ago

All so true. I have 5 kids ages 5-13. I like to think of them as my interior decorators. Why just this week they decided we needed a new living room lamp (chased the dog onto the end table), table cloth (girls found my nail polish stash), and toilet seat (I have no clue how they broke that). Gotta love garage sales. I never buy fancy new stuff if I can avoid it. I learned my lesson after the fancy twin beds I bought for my boys room became mattresses on the floor and a pile of kindling. Thank you grampa for letting them watch wrestling.

Lisa Creson 2 years ago

I don’t get why I always read/hear about the ‘harried parents with no time for anything., I’m a single mom and I would say nothing on this list applies.

Rebecca Bucke 2 years ago


Randy Berens 2 years ago

That all gets balanced out by the price of milk.

Tanya Coles 2 years ago

No way.

Julia Schwartz Martin 2 years ago

I thought this article was funny and true! I would say 60% applied to us with 3 kids in less than 5 years.

Cheri Tomasovich Silveira 2 years ago

You have to have a sense of humor once you have kids. Or you will go crazy. This is pretty darn funny.

Marina Long 2 years ago

Lol , my 8 year old actually asked me the other day why I always were the same black yoga pants all the time .

Mindy Park Yu 2 years ago

This isn’t huffingtonpost or NPR. Just laugh! I sure did. My favorite was #9

Genia Tsvetkova 2 years ago

Haha very true! :)

Christine Whitmore Levesque 2 years ago

Lol! So so true

Luke Czekaj 2 years ago


Jesse RM 2 years ago

House maintenance so true. Have 3 kids and no more decorating til the kids are older.I’m fine with my scratched up coffee table and dressor adorned with sharpie art

Power Lifting 2 years ago

Yeah don’t tell them it’s pay day

Katy 2 years ago

Ditto. To everything. Also? Going on “dates”. Pre-parenthood, I used to budget for date night/days obsessively. Movies, dinners, museums (my husband and I are nerds), etc. That stopped when I realized we would have to take a loan out to afford a babysitter AND the cost of dinner and a movie.

Tonight we are renting a movie on Amazon and getting Chili’s $20 dinner for two to go (because we have a gift card) after our toddler goes to bed. And I am excited about it.

Leona Moir Course 2 years ago

I missed out on this news! Do you think its too late?

Shauna Stacy 2 years ago

Nurse “What are you using for birth control since the baby?”
Me: “The baby.”

Natalie Voytek 2 years ago

Val Lepage McCann Missaoui cosleeping actually made our sex life better too. We get creative and def have a lot more than just about every other couple we know. Cosleeping only benefits our house. The little snip of “heaven help you if you cosleep” is silly. It makes life easier here

Lindsey Perrott 2 years ago

Well, that was depressing.

Kelley Cathcart 2 years ago

It’s Satire! Funny! You know that thing you used to do before parenting perfection shoved the stick in?

Allison Warenik-Queenan 2 years ago

While very funny, and once in a while true, it doesn’t have to be this way!! I promise, potential parents to be, every so often you will get ahead of your game and put on something nice and have a semi-clean kitchen!

Emily Gurney 2 years ago

Frighteningly accurate

Alanna Klapp 2 years ago

SO funny!!

Linda Lawson Green 2 years ago

Before kids I spent more on a weekly bar tab than I currently spend on feeding, clothing and daycare. Having a kid did save me money!

Joanna Alvarado 2 years ago

My toddler loves vacations and traveling. I grew up traveling the country and seeing what’s out there and so will my kid. Yes, the process of packing is crazy and it feels like I’m packing for two kids rather than one, But overall she’s pretty good on family trips. Please, If you can, take your little one out with you on vacation.

Amie Conner 2 years ago

It’s a humorous article, like all Scary Mommy posts. Go troll a different site if you can’t get the jokes.

Rachel Miller Palmer 2 years ago


Laura Dintino 2 years ago

Sadly I didn’t have the money for most of that stuff before I had kids, so no money saved here!

Tori Todd 2 years ago

It’s meant to poke fun at all the things that happen during parenthood. Lighten up. If your kids have never driven you nuts you are either a) a liar or b) on a strong prescription drug. (If you are, care to share some?)

Jaime Brooke 2 years ago

Lighten up people! It’s a funny article. We all have tough days as parents and humor is sometimes the best medicine. I think it’s healthy to make light of the challenges of parenthood, otherwise some might go insane at times;). I love being a mom, it’s the hardest but best job that I have ever had! I could really relate to a lot of these, and it gave me a good laugh, so thank you for that

Laura Avendano-Stoecker 2 years ago


Christina Cooper Stokes 2 years ago

Awesome! LOL

Ruth Martinez Abrego 2 years ago

LMFAO this is really funny. Of course we still do not manage to save money, but certainly some of the other things we just skip.

Brittany Burchfield 2 years ago

Funny. Other than gas money and regular bills and household items that are needed for every day life, I have spent $20 in the last, I dunno, six months. And it was spent on the kids. So, yeah. I guess if you call being in the negative anyway and still having $20 to do something out of the normal stay at home and not do anything at all routine saving money, yes we are.

Katelyn Lilly 2 years ago

Hahaha this is meant to be funny. Have a sense of humor. Think it’s hilarious. Kids are hard and it’s funny to hear jokes about things that have changed. Is it all true? No. But maybe at one time or another they have been.

Rachel Epperly Gladden 2 years ago

Yea we cosleep with a 1yo & a 3yo. The 3yo has punched and kicked me, the latter was this morning and my head but I wouldn’t do it different if I had the chance. Kids are awesome and equally suck but I love being a mom. It’s a tough job and people can snark but when you get those cuddles and their little heads lay on your shoulder all the suckiness goes out the window <3 LaQuisha :}

Stephanie O’Donnell 2 years ago

Hey @scary mommy! I think it’s time to run the “if you don’t have a sense of humor” disclaimer again!

    Jennifer Lynch 2 years ago

    Yeah really…

    Amie Conner 2 years ago


Macarena Romano Valerón 2 years ago

So true! But I’m so empty-headed that I spend all the savings on her closet!

Natalie Nikolich Baldwin 2 years ago

#2 … Someone knows me. Glad I’m not alone.

Taysi Carver 2 years ago

I disagree with every one of these.. I only had the amount of children that I can handle. If you can’t handle general life, like this article suggests you should probably not reproduce.
I have even many times traveled by myself with my kid. Across the country and even to other countries.

    Danielle Marie Caissie 2 years ago

    One kid. That’s why. I took 3 on a cruise. Yes we travel, but not much.

    Taysi Carver 2 years ago

    My point is don’t have more than you can handle, especially if you can’t handle basic functions such as dressing yourself.

    Amie Conner 2 years ago

    And if you can’t handle a humorous website, than go find a different one.

Karissa Bulthuis 2 years ago

I stopped goin out 3 nights a week and saved my self about 1k/mth!!!

Loredana Tornabene 2 years ago

Soooo true… But I’m spending money in things i never thought i would, like princess dresses and plastic jewelry.

Brandie Wheeler 2 years ago

This annoys me. Havung children doesnt mean your life is over…this article will make people never want to have kids. I have an infant and after my husband went back to work I have still been able to get up, get dressed, go run errands, meet fellow moms for lunch, clean my house, don laundry, etc…. life isn’t over after kids, its just different.

    Charlene Flores 2 years ago

    I’m really happy for you, no sarcasm intended…but it doesn’t work out that way for most of us. I’m not saying I don’t love my kids or would change my life…but people need to realize and be prepared for this new life with kids. Most just see the good and don’t even think of all the sacrifices that come along. I wish someone would have told me that I would wake up tired every single day of my life.

    Charlene Flores 2 years ago

    You still seem really new and in the early stages of being a parent so I’d love to see how you feel a year from now or when the terrible 2’s come but it’s actually at 3 now and when your kid is shadowing you every minute of every day and you can’t even poop by yourself. I’ll be there to welcome you with open arms :)

    Stephanie O’Donnell 2 years ago

    Brandi, you know this is a humor site right?

    Charlene Flores 2 years ago

    No she doesn’t, she’s a new mommy! Lol

    Brandie Wheeler 2 years ago

    Yes I know its a humor site I just feel like this post makes having children seem horrible. I have had my share of horrible days and I understand that it gets worse with multiples but children are a blessing and tired or not they are wonderful….not complete monsters. Every change in life comes with sacrifice. I love yhis site and how truthful and hilarious the articles are, this specific article just frustrated a bit, that is all.

    Danielle Marie Caissie 2 years ago

    Infants don’t argue, or move enough to create the issues she’s talking about…. Give it time. And I still get dressed and run around and work full time but a lot of this is true at some point. It’s for humor and a little honesty thrown in.

    Samantha Fellman Macias 2 years ago

    One child, especially an infant, is cake. Anymore or older is when you suddenly realize there is no time for anything that isn’t kid related. After my second, even taking a shower without some standing at the door crying or asking when I will be done is a total luxury.

    Kimberly Brown Sarmiento 2 years ago

    And sometimes the person crying or asking when you will be done is their father!

    Amie Conner 2 years ago

    This article, like all Scary Mommy articles is tongue in cheek. Laugh at the parts you find funny, than move on. If that’s hard than perhaps this isn’t the right site for you.

    Amber Nicole 2 years ago

    It’s totally a joke but I do agree with you! I had number four 7 months ago and we still do our weekly date night, still do all the stuff on the list. 😀

    Amber Nicole 2 years ago

    Oh our kids are totally spread out though. 15, 9, 4 and 7 months. I don’t know how I would be if they were all young and close in age. :/

    Charlene Flores 2 years ago

    Colic for 6 months…that is all!!!!

    Amber Nicole 2 years ago

    I’m sorry Charlene. :( Colic is awful!

    Kimberly Creel 2 years ago

    Wow, what’s with all the snobby replies to her opinion? It’s a humor site. I get that, but I didn’t think this article was necessary the greatest one either. I have an 18mo old, work full-time corporately (read: no yoga pants. ever. and I’m always “put together”). still see friends and have a social drink (like, once a month). It doesn’t bother me to shower with my lil guy OR get ready with him- it’s not the end of the world. No need to be nasty to the woman over her OPINION

    Brandie Wheeler 2 years ago

    Thanks Kimberly! I wasn’t trying to make people mad I just sort of felt like this article was not as funny as many on this site. I wasn’t offended or bashing the site, which I realize is a humor site. I simply think it’s not one of their best…typically you can see the sarcasm and what not where this article, in my opinion, seems like a mom who’s on the fritz and hates her life, thus trying to scare all other new or expectant moms.

    Tania Carfa Tarshishi 2 years ago

    Those of us who complain don’t love our kids any less or cherish our time with them any less. Just being realistic.
    Your life is never the same after kids, and especially when you have more than one (and less than 2.5 years apart in my case), a lot of days SUCK. My life is very blessed but very busy, very messy, very exhausting.

    Let’s say it how it is instead of sugar coating it. This is the toughest and best job around, but you’re going to get your hands really dirty ☺️

    Rebeca Rojo 2 years ago

    You’re able to do those things because you have one child (based on your post) haha just wait til you have 2…or 3 like me! Life is still awesome by the way. Just more hectic. With muuuuuch less “me-time”.

    Mande Sumner 2 years ago

    I’ll be honest, even though I really did find this article hysterical, I truly can’t relate to it. I found it hysterical because I have friends and family who CAN relate. My daughter is now 14 and honestly not much about our life changed after she was born. I realized quickly that we were truly blessed for that though, when I visited friends and family and they were experiencing so many of the issues listed. For us though, we stayed the course. I still had nice clothes and fancy toiletries and makeup. We still went out to eat and hubby and I even had date nights. Our furniture did get slip covered but that was due to the cat and dog not the kiddo. We still traveled…. often, even doing Route 66 when kiddo was 4. My beloved movie and book collection only grew and the little began adding to our knick knacks at 3 when she became obsessed with giraffes. And a maid? Bah! I never had a maid until about 2 years ago and I DO NOT preclean! But I get this article, I truly do because the friends and family that have these issues make having kids look frightening!!

Nouran Saad 2 years ago

Looool so true.

Bethany Neumeyer 2 years ago


Laura Sabalburo 2 years ago


Bethany 2 years ago

Hilarious and so true! This made me laugh out loud. Except that I want to know who these overachievers are who change into a new set of yoga pants at the end of the day?!? Who has the energy for that?? I admit that I did change my shirt last night before bed, but only because the one I was wearing was soaked with fresh spitup. So I changed into a shirt that had dried spitup on it instead.

Simona Tóthová 2 years ago

Do you know what Dita, this really doesn’t work for me:) since I’ve been on maternity I spend much more on toiletries, household, clothes… Just on everything and than I’m upset about it when I look at my account and bcs I’m upset I need to make myself happy so I go shopping… Neverending circle

Laura Liston 2 years ago

I’m not getting rid of my cleaning lady!!

Sharon T White Hove 2 years ago

Rich in love, short on cash

Natalie Voytek 2 years ago

Pfftt. Cosleeping actually increases the amount of sleep I get. And I dont find kids to be terribly expensive

    Laura J. Faass 2 years ago

    I coslept with my two kids and slept a lot more than other moms. Best move I ever did. It’s not like they are going to be ten and still sleeping in the bed with parents.

    Val Lepage McCann Missaoui 2 years ago

    The co-sleeping thing was referring to sex.

Giny Tunnell 2 years ago

Spot on!

Becky Francke 2 years ago


Samantha Maxwell 2 years ago

This might be true, had I ever lived my life that way. Lol. I’m pregnant with my third, either way you slice and dice it, kids are expensive. My only saving grace is I have all girls so hand me down clothes it is, or already trade then in four newer nice ones. Haha

baby products in Melbourne 3 years ago

I love your sense of humor. And yes, when I started per-cleaning for the lady who came to clean our kitchen/bathrooms when our kids were babies, I knew something was terribly wrong.

Katia 3 years ago

I used to shop a lot. Now I have two kids. Surprisingly enough (how quickly we forget) being on maternity leave is not really conducive to shopping as I am rediscovering. It snows, it rains, baby’s sick etc.

Over the weekend I visited a mommy friend’s house, which surprisingly enough is always immaculate. She buys a lot of stuff on ebay – a skill I have yet to master and I had just spent a half an hour browsing the website, when I decided that online shopping is a dangerous path for me to go down and I’d better check what’s on Scary Mommy. Loved your post and the timing! :-)

SJ 3 years ago

V funny! Made me remember last week when my 3 year old daughter asked if I ‘please could not wear the pink sweatshirt AGAIN!!’

Stacey 3 years ago

My kid isn’t even born yet and so many of these already apply. I’m kinda worried I’ll be shuffling around looking like a homeless person until her school-age years.

SnapInTime 3 years ago

I love this!!! So, so true and I literally laughed out loud at so many of these!

Yes, houses with children that have no evidence of children totally mystify me.

My daughter never fails to ask me where I am going when I put on jeans. I only own two freakin pairs and one pair of slightly nicer pants. I have to ration them, ok?? She can put on a flippin fashion snow and I own 3 pairs of fitted pants. Good grief.

The Mean Mama 3 years ago

I only change into a clean pair of yoga pants and shirt if they are visibly dirty and I have to go somewhere fancier than Wal-Mart….say the Dentist? If I have to go to the school for some unfortunate reason I put on a sweatshirt to cover up the baby spit-up on my shirt.
This way I save on laundry!

Kimberly 3 years ago

Hysterical list! And oh so true…

Lady Jennie 3 years ago

As my son said, “Tu n’as qu’a …”

(translated) You just have to have a baby if you’re poor, then let them grow teeth, let the tooth fall out and the “little mouse” will come and bring money. And then you won’t be poor anymore!”

It’s that simple.

Amber 3 years ago

So true! I can’t seem to ever keep my house clean. It always baffles me when I go into a home that has kids yet I don’t see evidence of them. I’m like, “Are they locked up in the basement or what?”

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I’ll bet they have kid junk jammed in EVERY corner you can’t easily see! Ha!

Crystal 3 years ago

This is so spot on! I love the restaurant/eating out tidbit, as we are now entering the “I’ll throw stuff at the other diners and like it” stage! Not fun!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I hold my breath every time we decide to go out. You. Never. Know. It’s terrifying!

Lynn from For Love or Funny 3 years ago

Hi Deni, I love your sense of humor. And yes, when I started pre-cleaning for the lady who came to clean our kitchen/bathrooms when our kids were babies, I knew something was terribly wrong. :)

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Thank you! I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

    Why do we pre-clean?

    Although, I wouldn’t go to the dentist without brushing and flossing first so. . .

Krysta 3 years ago

All of our fancy Waterford decorative glass keeps moving higher higher higher and then gone altogether in our living room/play room. I’m like why did we spend so much money furnishing and decorating the living room/house?! All of our shelving is bare from a certain point down and it looks like a fisher price bomb went off. Add some dog barf full of plastic pieces of baby toys and a shredded couch from the cat claws and that about sums it up! Don’t get me started on how often I actually get to shower!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago


    I’ve taken SCADS of beautiful glassware, dishes, decorative items to Goodwill. Our awesome sofa is now sporting an ill-fitting slipcover. I threw at least 1/4 of our furniture onto the street with “FREE” signs because it was just getting decimated and it was breaking my heart.

    There’s a valuable lesson here: If you have “nice” things, pre-kid USE and enjoy them! Do not wait! And take photos of how nice everything looks!

    If you do not have “nice” things pre-kid, don’t sweat it. . .you’re already ahead of the game.

    I’ll toast you, in a plastic Solo cup because my “good” wine glasses are on a shelf so high, I can’t access them without a ladder!

kristen brakeman 3 years ago

All so true. Especially the clothes. I used to spend so much on clothes and now I find that I’m actually excited when I see the new line at Target. God help me.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I’m right there with you! In fact, I’ve given away probably 60% of all my “nice” clothes because I just wasn’t wearing them and there was no point having them gather dust.

    Now I’ll all jazzed to hit Target, Old Navy, and if I really want to get crazy I’ll order me a “fancy” machine washable dress from Land’s End!

    I’ll admit this much: Machine washable garments with questionable fit, are damned comfortable!

Ariana 3 years ago

#9, I actually never even considered a maid until after children. But after kids I would have been way to embarrassed to let a professional cleaning person see my home!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Mmmm Hmmmm. I hear ya.

    If we ever move, I have only one MUST HAVE for a new home: The house must be able to be cleaned with a high-powered hose. . .and there should be drains in all the floors so it can just drain and air dry. . .

    So let me know if you see any 1400 sq. ft. showers for sale in the greater Baltimore area! LOL.

      Kelly 2 years ago

      Oh my gosh, I about peed my pants reading that. It would be so much easier to hose the house and kids down to get everything clean.

Amy @ Mommy Rodeo 3 years ago

Hahaha. I was literally talking about #7 the other day. I was so careful with all of his food… up until he began his food boycott. Nothing but cheese slices thank you very much. Or bananas. I resorted to feeding him almost anything if he’d eat it. I figured at this point, a calorie is a calorie.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    How old is he Amy? Has he outgrown it yet? I’m DYING here! The kid is KILLING ME!

    It’s not that he’s “picky” because he’ll eat just about anything. BUT only if he FEELS LIKE IT. So he might be all jazzed about broccoli for 2 weeks and then BAM! Boycott.

    We’re “over” nearly all fruit BUT cantaloupe. All veggies BUT steamed carrots and maybe a cucumber slice. Sometimes he even rejects TATERTOTS! (He’s a damned savage). And there’s no amount of dip, ketchup, dressings, hummus, cool whip that can trick him!

    Let me know if you have creative suggestions and thanks for your comments! :)

Mama and the City 3 years ago

This post is awesome.

I was very conscious of my money prior to the kid, but this was a life changing for my husband, who knew huh?

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    My Husband was always the saver and budgeter before children. I played pretty fast and loose with my own expendable income.

    But like your own Husband, I became much more conscious after our son was born.

Maria Bellos Fisher of Hereditary Insanity 3 years ago

I love the one about travel. I wholeheartedly agree that it sucks. My husband keeps asking me if I’d like to live in some undesirable place (like Chicago – brrr and no NY pizza!) “And just travel a lot.” Is he f-ing kidding? I swear he’s there when we travel with the kids, but he must escape to some alternate universe where the walk down the jetway is not the Highway to Hell. I’m really happy to have discovered you, Deni. I’m definitely going to check out your blog!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Well, thank you Maria! I look forward to checking out Hereditary Insanity too!

    Travel’s great! (Once you get home and everyone’s still alive and the hellish memories start to fade!)

    Happy trails, Maria! Have a great weekend.

Jamie@SouthMainMuse 3 years ago

All the money you save while they are babies needs to be invested for when they make the dreaded leap from children’s sizes in clothes to adults. Especially the shoes. Which you have to buy every 6 months. I wish my parents had encouraged cleat manufacturing as a career option.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Ha! Didn’t Nike start in a suburban garage somewhere? I think the founders poured latex/rubber into a waffle iron to make the soles?

    Do you have a waffle iron? You could probably fashion cleats by strategically placing pushpins or a similar item, into the rubber before it sets!

    I have two sisters. We took ballet lessons for years. I cannot begin to guess the amount of money my parents must have spent on pointe shoes. Brutal.

      SnapInTime 3 years ago

      Seriously, what’s the deal with the shoes?!? Those boy feet grow 1/2″ when they make the leap from size 6 to 7 and the price freakin doubles?

      Dance. My daughter has the most expensive costume box in the history of the world. Those recital costumes x3 every.single.spring…..

      Good thing we save money on those things for unimportant people like ummmm US. That list was hysterical! And so true! Oh I also seem to vaguely remember buying new underwear before the waistband was unraveling on what I had and new bras just because I wanted them. Ha. Now it’s the new shoes every 14 minutes because the teenager feet are powered by testosterone and Nike….

Jack 3 years ago

Try sending your kids to private school and watch all the money saving tips go out the window.

Good times.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Jack, I get it. We live in downtown Baltimore and we’re hoping not to relocate because we love our home and our neighborhood. However, the school situation is something my Husband and I worried about even before having children. We have excellent private schools. . .but the costs are mind blowing. Best wishes!

Emily Holz 3 years ago

I totally agree with the destroyed house thing. In fact I’ve had to replace some furniture due to kid and cat damage. Social life and travel, true. My fave expression; they’re energy vampires.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I had no idea kids were so hard on things! When I was a kid I remember wondering why my own Mother had these hideous lamps on the tables beside the sofa. Now I know. . .they were there because she wouldn’t care if we destroyed them! Ha.

    jess 2 years ago

    My husband spent months making a dressor and my 2 year old scribbled all over it with a black sharpie marker.I wish I could post the pic…after that..no more new furniture til they grow up lol..I’m fine with my scribbled on sticker decorated coffee tables

Amy Patton 3 years ago

Yeah, but the therapy you need as a result will wipe you flat out. Amy

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Ha! That’s entirely possible.

Jaded 3 years ago

ARE you mocking me, Deni???? I feel you looking in my windows… Maybe I should start moping or something I feel you looking into my life. lol… too funny thank for the “making me pee in my pants post” 😉

grownandflown 3 years ago

Deni, great ideas and a good thing to start to save with babies. As a slightly older (OK, much older mom), there is something very expensive way on the horizon I will spell because to say it out loud is terrifying – c.o.l.l.e.g.e. Yikes!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago


    C o l l e g e.

    You mean my short, pudgy little guy isn’t going to get a full sports scholarship? 😉

    It is terrifying – for many reasons!

Momchalant 3 years ago

This is such a great post! You forgot to mention that you won’t even want to buy new clothes once you have love handles and a muffin top.. so that also saves money.

    audrey 3 years ago

    My poor love handles and muffin top! I don’t want new clothes, but mostly because I need a bigger size…stupid DH and kids ruining the figure I worked so hard for!

      Deni Miller 3 years ago

      Excellent point. Although I must shamefully admit I was sportin’ a mean muffin top BEFORE the baby! :)

    Melon 3 years ago

    I have a closet full of clothing that is too small but I stuffed my body into the stuff that fits (2 pair of pants and a hand full of tops) and a long cardigan sweater to cover the muffin top. I can’t seem to buy the bigger size as I had lost weight a few years ago and think I might be able to do it again while knowing it can’t happen without exercise….but then I think i don’t go anywhere anyway…

      Deni Miller 3 years ago

      You are NOT alone, Melon! Although, I’m ruthless, I ditch ANYTHING that doesn’t fit. We just don’t have room to keep it.

      That has left me hoping it will soon be fashionable to wear tailored blazers with yoga pants. . .

      Ooohhhh. . .are those cookies?! Gotta go! :)

Debbie 3 years ago

Wow this is a grrrreat list for birth control. As for saving money, yes it does stop going on us (the parent). But then comes the kids clothes that they grow out of every few months and as they get older you maybe lucky if they fit them for 6 months. Don’t forget the diapers and all there lotions and yes, the toys and gates that are going to clutter up the house. Then comes the birthday parties, which they will never remember having at the age of 2, 3 and 4.

All the activities they need to be in now days at the earliest possible age, oh and don’t forget about all the car seats and larger car you need for all the car seat.
Love the humor in this and that is what is really important in being a parent, you have to keep the humor and move right along, one day at a time.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    I’m glad you appreciate the humor. It’s true, they are so, so expensive. And I agree, parents sometimes get way too caught up in elaborate and expensive sometimes not practical extras – like those crazy birthdays the child won’t remember! But they are worth every penny! Keep laughin’ 😉

Jessica Smock 3 years ago

Every single one of these “budget savers” are true for us. I used to be a beauty products hoarder — I loved having a millions choices of shampoos, moisturizers, hair products. I would choose a different one every day. Now I use shampoo-conditioner-in-one (something I always thought was just for lazy, cheap people) and never shave my legs or put on makeup.
I used to be a huge film fan… It was my favorite thing to do on weekends, along with dinner out. This year I realized that this was the first year that I had never seen most of the movies nominated for a Best Picture Oscars. (And actually, not only had I not seen them, but I had never HEARD of most of them.) I never buy clothes. We don’t travel. But doesn’t this only count for one kid? After the first kid, the budgetary bonuses no longer count, right?

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    It’s amazing how much more room we have in the bathroom since I ditched almost all my beauty products. I used to maintain a Bath and Body 6 flavor minimum. Now it’s sensitive skin Dove and Eucerin. Sigh.

    I only have on kid at the moment so I’m not sure what happens with more. Although, I’d imagine you might be able to sucker them into doing twice as much cleaning. . .unless of course they decide to sword fight with toilet brushes. . .Which I’m pretty sure is a given.

    I’m not a tax advisor, but I think the tax deduction still applies. :)

      Jessica Smock 3 years ago

      I’m more of a Lubriderm, Chapstick, Olay body wash, and Pantene girl now myself. And, yes, there is LOADS of room in our bathroom now.

        Deni Miller 3 years ago

        Have you noticed yet, some of that extra bathroom space is becoming cluttered with disgusting, perpetually damp, likely moldy, soap scummy bathtub toys?!

          Lisa Heimer 1 year ago


    Jenn 2 years ago

    I think the bonuses still count. With 2 kids I find myself rotating the same three shirts and pants to avoid more laundry, I used to at least pick a different pair of yoga pants each day. Now the new pair becomes the sleeping pair the next day, and the workout pair the next. Also I clean less, eat less, pee less, and shower quicker. So yeah, I save even more! :)

Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes 3 years ago

You are quit right about the ‘making kids clean stuff’ game. I suggest you let them watch Cinderella. After watching mine started this lovely game in which I’m the wicked mother and they are the poor drudges Cinderella and baby Cinderella. I don’t let them scrub floors (yet) but gave them some dustrags and now they clean the baseboards while I sit on the couch with the cat on my lap barking orders at them.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    BRILLIANT!!! With all our pets, the baseboards are the bane of my existence – always covered in pet hair. This is seriously the BEST idea I’ve heard in ages! I’m going to get Cinderella ASAP!

    Melomar 3 years ago

    You’re a GENIUS. I love this I must try it, my kids pick up stuff from plays or movies to turn into games or ways to annoy me all the time but I never thought about trying to use that habit for good

Lalitha 3 years ago

This is soooo true esp sweat pants. I wore a dress for my sons 3rd bday party and it was the first time he’d seen me in one i guess. In an elevator full of ppl he asked me – mommy where are your pants? U forgot them?!!!!

    Deni Miller 3 years ago


    My hair is typically up in a messy bun or tucked under a scarf or hat. Whenever my son first sees me with my hair actually down and styled (particularly if it’s been blown out), he looks at me all confused and full of wonder and hesitantly touches it. Cracks me up! Poor kid. He has no idea I used to look that way almost every day!

Amanda Martin 3 years ago

Hahahaha Loved this! Especially “Resign yourself to the fact that you will likely just wait for the kid to turn 18, burn whatever is left, and start over.” My husband is already asking when the kids leave home – they’re 2 and 4!

And the sweat pants and t-shirt combo. I wore new jeans the other day and my son said, perplexed, “what are they mummy?” This morning I wore a skirt (!) because I was going to the doctors about my knee and it saved the embarrassment of peeling off dirty jeans. I even ironed it. So much new and inexplicable activity nearly melted my little boy’s mind.

    Deni Miller 3 years ago

    Thank you! We should start a Pinterest board called “After the Fire” for everything we want after the kid’s leave home. Ha!

    Hope your appointment goes well today! Take care!

      Margaret 3 years ago

      HAHAHA! “After the Fire.” I love it!!

    Jay 2 years ago

    Hahaha… I wore a dress the other day & my 4 & 7-year-old sons were completely confused! “But, mom, what IS that?!” I thought I was the only one.

    KB 1 year ago

    See, for me it’s a handful of maxi dresses that rotate. The first time I wore shorts though….you would think my 2yo had seen a space alien. She kept rubbing my knee and looking both delighted and confused.


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