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I’m Thinking (JUST THINKING) About Having a Kid

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Don’t die of shock.  This is not a statement that I am actively trying to get pregnant (I’m NOT).  I am still leaning towards the idea that children are not for me right now, but I have officially gone from “Oh, HELLS NO” to “Ummm.  Maybe?”. My View of Having Kids If you have been reading BFS for a while, you may have noticed that I sort of cringe at the idea of having kids.  I’ve named off a bunch of reasons over the years, but here is what it really boils down to: My shallow reasons…Kids in general are messy, sticky, and go through a ton of bratty stages.  I also think babies are generally really ugly, poop way too much, cry way too much, and would completely screw up my figure more than donuts ever have (yep, good ol’ vanity).  Teenagers are just nuts (I still remember how I acted).    And did I mention how messy kids can be?  I really, really like my brand new, shiny house.  I’m not ready to have crayon on the walls (if I get lucky enough that they don’t use markers) or stains on all of the bedroom carpets. My deeper reasons…I think … Read more

Babysitting was a Blast!

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So not only did I survive babysitting this past weekend, but it was actually a lot of fun!  Here was how it worked out: The Kids Just to remind you, I was taking care of three kids: 6 year old girl – I’ll call D 9 year old boy – hereby known as R 11 year old boy – now called G Hanging Out They ended up only needing me from 1pm Friday through 10pm on Sunday night.  The original plan had me getting there at 5:45am Friday morning.  This worked well for me since I didn’t have to wake up at 4:30am Friday morning as expected.  🙂 Friday Friday was the honeymoon period with kids.  First my friend explained the routines including the kids’ medicines and the animals’ feeding habits.  Then they headed off around 2pm and the kids and I figured out what to do.  D, R, and I played a board game right off the back called “Puppyopoly” for about an hour.  This game became a daily habit and I sort became addicted myself.  It’s like what Monopoly really should have been. While we played, G (who is mildly autistic – like the dictionary version of mild autism, … Read more

Babysitting this Weekend, Any Suggestions?

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We are part of a really cool group of people that hang out to board game whenever possible.  We also take turns hosting potlucks and dinner parties pretty regularly as well.  One of those friends and his wife haven’t had 3 days in a row to themselves for more than 12 years!  Holy moly!  So I will be taking care of 3 kids from Friday morning through Sunday night… How Did I Get Into Babysitting? Well, our friend asked me about a month ago to see if anyone could babysit this coming weekend since his regular go-to sitters weren’t available.  He has a 6 year old little girl, an 8 year old boy, and an 11 year old boy. The only special circumstance is that the 11 year old is autistic, but he is actually the most laid back kid of the group.  I’ve been around him for half days two or three times now.  The only thing that seems different is that he can get really, really focused on something to the point of it being almost obsessive.  Like rules or making sure something was worded correctly.  But anytime it’s happened around me, I just distracted him with absolutely anything else for a second and … Read more

Children Have No Money Sense

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The following is another guest post from My Canuck Buck.  Thank you so much for pitching in while life is nuts!  Please check out her site when you have a chance!  Recently, I babysat my 2 nieces (aged 9 and 10) for the weekend. We took them up to see their cousins (1 boy and 1 girl – ages 12 and 11) for a short visit. My nephew had a ball hockey game and afterwards we took the kids out for a snack and to the mall. I concluded after the “snack” part that I do not have any concept of how much fast food costs these days. For 4 kids, it cost me over 20 bucks!  And they would have eaten more if I’d let them!  Part of the issue was that I didn’t think ahead and tell them exactly what they could and couldn’t have. So, in order to not hold up the line, I just let them order what they wanted, and “Frosty shakes” for a drink cost a lot more than juice or pop.  If I did this again, I’d tell them ahead of time they can only have something from the value menu (maybe even limit … Read more

In Praise of Hand Me Down Toys

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The following is a guest post from My Canuck Buck – a lady paying closer attention to her bucks now.  Please check her out! I’ll admit it. I’m a cheap (but proud!) Aunt. I have a total of four nieces. They range in age from 4 to 11. I have helped the eldest one clean out the family basement a few times, and as such, been able to help her get rid of a lot of toys she has outgrown. The majority of these have gone to charity, but I have pulled some aside for my youngest niece. Since the children are from different sides of the family, this wouldn’t be a “natural” progression of toys, just something I’ve managed to arrange. My youngest niece adores the toys I got her. There’s a bunny in a tutu, an awesome castle that lights up, a dragon, and some other toys that go with the castle. She hasn’t even seemed to notice the large chunk of plastic that has come out of the castle – it doesn’t interfere with her playing with it in any way.  I supplemented with some yard sale toys, and now she’s got lots to play when she … Read more

What My Parents Taught Me About Finance

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The following is a guest post from a true friend, Suba at Wealth Informatics.  She is such an awesome blogger and a sincerely sweet person.  Please check out her site for yourself – believe me, you will want to sign up for her RSS feed if nothing else.  Her posts are so informative.  I have been begging her to write for me regularly for more than a year now, lol.  If you don’t know her in some way, I would highly suggest trying.  I am a better person for knowing her. February is National Parent Leadership Month, which highlights the role parents play in shaping the lives of their children. I personally feel that parents have the power and the responsibility to teach their kids to be good financial citizens. What did my parents directly teach me about finance? Nothing. Umm… What? First, a bit of a background about me. I came to the US less than 10 years ago. I grew up in India, in a middle class family (read monthly income : 200 USD). My parents, my grandparents, my sister, and I shared a one bedroom home. Both of us got an excellent education, new clothes when necessary, encouragement … Read more

Baby Formula Money Saving Tips

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The following is a guest post about saving money on baby formula by Mike Collins from SavingMoneyToday.net.  Check out his new site at BabyStuffGuide.com, which is dedicated to helping new parents make smart decisions.  Thanks Mike for the family post! New parents are usually shocked at how much their little one costs, and I’m not just talking about hospital bills.  Clothes, diapers, bedding, strollers, toys…the list goes on and on.  And if you don’t want to breastfeed (or are unable to), then you can expect to spend a small fortune on baby formula.  Pediatricians recommend that babies stay on formula until they are a year old and then they can switch over to whole milk.  That’s twelve months in which your new baby will be devouring baby formula at an alarming rate.   With that in mind, here are some tips for saving money on baby formula. Saving Money on Baby Formula Tips Stick with powder.  I know the pre-mixed, ready to drink formula is more convenient but you’ll pay big time for that.  If you use powdered formula which has to be mixed with water you can slash your baby formula bills by as much as 50%. Use generic formula.  … Read more