Thursday, May 23, 2013

Secrets of Motherhood: Vol. 1

With my first child, I Googled everything: whether or not he should eat rice or oatmeal, if his poop should be this color, when his teeth should pop through his gums, how many clothes he should be wearing to bed, when his eyes would change, what temperature is suitable for baths. When I say I Googled everything, I mean I Googled absolutely everything.


Parenting doesn't come with an instruction manual but lucky for me the Internet was always there when I needed to know if I should put the thermometer under his arm pit or up his butt.

Things are much calmer with my second baby.

When I found out we were having a little girl I didn't rush out and buy a trillion baby products like I did with my son. I still had most of the baby stuff I purchased two years prior stored away in the basement after we used it once--twice, maybe. Oh, I had to have everything for my first baby: swings and changing tables, pee-pee teepees, new clothes, expensive diapers, baby bathtubs and hooded character towels, an entire nursery filled with beautiful white furniture and adorned with matching sheet sets and blankets. With my second baby I bought a few outfits from my favorite consignment store and two crib sheets.

You live and learn and then buy Target brand diapers.

I'm going to start sharing some of the things I've learned about motherhood in the hopes that maybe it will help other moms and dads out there who may be Googling for advice as I am still known to do constantly.

My first bit of parenting advice is this: BUY CONSIGNMENT.

I wasn't thrilled about the idea of my brand new teeny tiny infant coming home from the hospital and wearing clothes that *gasp* might have been worn by another child. I spent the $20 per outfit at these big department stores and washed everything in Dreft as I kept telling myself that my child would have only the best quality clothing. And then I took the stick out of my butt and now I only shop consignment.

We go to our local Once Upon a Child for almost everything. I can buy both of my kids an entire wardrobe for less than $100. Kids grow out of their clothes faster than you can blink. They spit up, vomit, smear spaghetti and paint all over their wardrobe. Mom can feel much more at ease letting those clothes get ruined if you've only spent $4.50 on the outfit. In the end I am a happier mom and my kids are luckier kids for consignment. And the stuff at Once Upon a Child is such high quality.

Also, try out store brands. We shop Target brand for everything. After years of buying Pampers because my son has a sensitive rump and broke out in a diaper rash with Luvs, and leaked through Huggies, we discovered Target brand diapers which are half the cost of Pampers and work just as well. Because of my cancer treatment I had to figure out the world of formula for Katie since breastfeeding past the first month was not possible and we started with Enfamil and quickly discovered that she reacted better on the Target brand formula which was much cheaper. Plus we get 5% off when we use our Target REDcard.

Do yourself a favor and stop wasting money on brand new baby items that you may use once or not at all. Babies aren't expensive at all if you shop at the right places.

[I am not being reimbursed for writing this post. All opinions expressed are my own.]