We've had to be really frugal, especially these last few months because I recently had a baby girl this last December. My husband was laid off from his job about the same time. We've cut back things we absolutely don't need, like sweets and junk food. Just the essentials! I'm nursing instead of buying baby formula which has helped so much. Luckily I have enough coming in to feed her. Also, we've found a lot of baby clothes in great condition at the thrift shop, that has helped tremendously.
Our families have helped us with so many things, and we've also gotten some help through our church with other stuff. Don't be afraid to ask for help from family if you need it. Friends and neighbors are willing to help out as much as they can, too. My mom has invited us to come over for dinners when we need.
I've just felt very blessed lately, and hopefully my husband will be able to find another job soon. It's a scary economy, but keep a prayer in your heart and things work out!
Stacey S. from Eagle Mountain, UT
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Good for you. I am 65 now, but was poor when my children were born. Nursing is the best thing you can do for your child's health and development. We had little by way of clothing, etc but all the baby knows is is it warm and clean and loved. Babies do not look in the mirror. As for using 'used' things, the minute we have used a new thing, it's used.
I planned my meals around nutritional needs and fortunately had a store where I could buy from bins and a butcher who packaged to order. I literally planned meals to the ounces of meat. Everybody had a vitamin c food once per day, a yellow veggie/dark green veggie once per day, a great veggie soup of some kind on Wednesdays, with home made bread. I can't say enough for buying instant yeast in one pound bulk package, storing in fridge in tightly sealed jar.
Bread, rolls, cinnamon rolls, pizza can roll out of the oven in 2 hours, easy. Second thing is nutritional yeast, either brewers or the flake kind. I started that to keep my milk flowing when I was nursing and have continued it. Small spoon in any baked thing, any soup. Lots of B vits and minerals.
Another thing that helps save for baby is to buy regular apple juice instead of costly baby juice. Mix the juice with an equal amount of water and it is the same thing you would buy for baby. This was doctor approved when I had my little ones.
I am surprised the doctor agreed with watering down the juice because when you add the water to it, it cuts down the vitamins in the juice because you are making it weaker.
Kudos for you for nursing your baby. I nursed my 3 sons till they were at least 2. One weaned himself a few months before, his decision -- the other two were over 2. You do not have to give them juice or baby food before 6 months, and then making your own babyfood is a frugal option. I used to buy the babyfood meat in jars, but just mashed the veggies or cooked fruit with my fork. Mashed banana (that's raw, of course) was a favorite. If your baby is older you do not have to use the blender so much as they will be able to handle food with a little texture. I also used cream of wheat for cereal instead of pablum. (Pablum tastes gross, in my opinion.) I had friends who did make up lots of baby meals -- usually from roasts with gravy, potatoes, etc. and froze them in baby sized portions. Very cost effective, and likely more nutritious.
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