How to get free stuff for baby

I had just quit my job to focus on my senior year of college when I found I was pregnant for the first time. My husband had a good job but that didn’t stop me from constantly worrying about money. (I guess you could say it’s one of the side effects of growing up poor. I don’t mean “I didn’t get the Gameboy I wanted for Christmas kind of poor” I mean the kind of poor where you are using the oven to heat the house kind of poor.) The thought of  “how in the world are we going to afford all of the stuff a baby needs?!” kept crossing my mind. Then I started digging around and found some codes that allowed me to get free things for baby. Because I now have another little one on the way, I thought I’d share with ya’ll how to save on stuff for baby and some codes to get free or discounted things for baby!!

Photo Courtesy of EskimoKids.com


THE CODES:

Carseatcanopy.com CARSEAT for $50 off

Uddercovers.com UCOVER for $35 off

Sevenslings.com SEVEN for $40 off

Nursingpillow.com NPILLOW for $40 off

Bellybuttonband.com  ONEONLY for $40 off

Babyleggings.com ONEONLY for $50 off

Breastpads.com ONEONLY for $35 off

Babiesfirstbooks.com BABYBOOKS 5 free books

Rufflebuns.com   ONEONLY for $60 off

Eskimokids.com WILDTHING for $35 off

 

The codes above either covers the cost of the product or greatly discounts it. There is a little catch to these deals though, the shipping on these items can be little high. The most I’ve ever paid was $15 and the least I’ve ever paid was about $7. However that’s way less than what you’d pay for the actual product so it’s still a really awesome deal.

 

Tips On Saving for baby:

1. Buy used:

There are plenty of second hand baby/toddler/kid high end consignment shops now. You can find name brand clothing, cribs, carseats, strollers, bassinets etc. Keep in mind however if you buy a carseat from a consignment shop you need to check the expiration date on it. Most stores do this but it never hurts to take a look for yourself. (I wish there would have been a baby consignment shop open before my son was born, luckily though one opened up right after. Now there are two great consignment shops in my area that I get to shop around before this new little one makes his arrival.)

2. Buy Not Only for Now but Also the Future:

Before Deklin  was born I decided to buy this crib/mattress/dresser/changingtable combo from Walmart.com. It was only $250 for the entire thing which is a fantastic deal considering that it transitions from a crib to a toddler bed into a full size bed. For the first year it  was great and it’s even been okay as a toddler bed. However there is no way in the world I transition it into a full size bed, I just wouldn’t feel comfortable with my son sleeping in it. It just isn’t sturdy enough to hold the weight of a full size mattress and the weight of a growing boy. My husband and I plan on striping it down, repainting it, and reinforcing it turning it back into a crib. (If it’s durable enough) For what we paid for it and everything that came with it, I really shouldn’t complain. The cribs done it’s job over the last 3 years, I just wish that I would’ve thought about all of the stages of the crib and if it was truly going to last. Had I known what I know now I definitely would have bought something a lot sturdier than I did. If we do end up having to buy to a new crib, you can bet your sweet buns that I’ll be buying it from a consignment shop.

One smart thing we did do the first time around was buy one convertible carseat (a carseat that grows with the baby) and an infant carseat. The convertible carseat was placed in my husbands truck and the infant carseat in my car (considering that Deklin would with me for the majority of the day). We went with a cheaper infant carseat because we knew that he wouldn’t be in it for very long. (He was in it maybe 8 or 9 months, if that. Then we bought a convertible carseat for my car.)  The convertible carseats cost a little more up front but we probably won’t have to buy another carseat until he’s 4 or 5 years old.

3. Buy Gender Neutral:

     When we were shopping around for a pack-n-play and a baby swing there were all of these adorable blue and green boyish ones or these adorable little girl ones with the little canopy drops.  I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to get those. But I knew I had to be smart. We knew we wanted more kids someday and I didn’t want to have to go out and buy these things over again. I probably wouldn’t have done that but I would’ve felt bad. So instead we went with gender neutral on everything big. Then we packed it away for the next baby.

4. Save as Much As you can from your First Baby

My husband called me a hoarder for saving so many clothes and all of the big stuff. I didn’t save every outfit but I did save all of the really adorable ones. (There are outfits that I saved that Deklin never even wore because he grew so fast)  Now that we know we are having another boy, he’s thankful I did. Saving the big stuff also saves us a lot of money because lets face it the price of things aren’t going to decrease, they are just going to continue to get higher and higher.

 

So there you have it my tips on how to get free/discounted stuff for baby. Please leave me a comment letting me know if these tips and promotional codes were helpful.

 

 

 

 

For those of you who don’t know

There’s a really good reason I haven’t been writing that much lately. That reason is morning sickness. Okay so that isn’t the only reason but it was huge contributing factor. We found out that we are expecting and our new little baby will make it’s arrival in November.

I’ve heard women say that every pregnancy is different and I don’t think they were lying. With my first pregnancy I only had a little nausea the first trimester that was it. The first trimester of this pregnancy I was either nauseous or throwing up. I’m 17 weeks right now and  thank goodness the sickness has slacked off a great deal. Another new symptom I’ve had this time is the sensitivity to smell. I had my eyebrows waxed the other day and the beautician had on a really sweet smelling lotion. It instantly made me nauseous and I had to ask her to wash her hands.

Aside from all the symptoms I’m excited but I’m also nervous. Not about the diaper changes or the midnight feedings or even being completely sleep deprived. I’m worried about how much our lives are going to change. Everyone tries to tell you how much your life will change when you have your first baby but of course most of us are know-it-all perfect parents, so we don’t listen. Then we are quickly humbled when the baby arrives. I think there is beauty in that.

This time I’m not a know-it-all unexperienced parent. I definitely know more now then I did before my first. But I also know that this baby could be entirely different from his brother and that’s the thing I’m worried about. I know that sounds silly because there are no two people on this planet that are exactly the same but it’s still a valid fear.

What’s it going to be like having two kids? I don’t know but I’m certain it will be a humbling adventure.

Bird Nests

One of my earliest school memories is of being at an end of the year class party and eating a Haystack for the very first time. It was amazing. Years have passed and I’ve often thought of that delicious piece of candy. However I haven’t had another one since. So the other day that memory popped in my head and I instantly knew what I had to do. I had to make some Haystacks but since it’s almost Easter I decided to be a little festive and make Bird Nest Haystack. Needless to say they turned out absolutely mouth watering. Today I’m going to show you how to make Bird Nests/Haystacks.

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Here’s what you’ll need

1 Bag of Butterscotch Morsels

1 Cup of Peanut Butter

1/2 Teaspoon of Vanilla

4 Cups of Chow Mein Noodles

1 Bag of Egg Shaped Candy ( I used Whoppers Robbin Eggs)

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Start by placing the 4 cups of chow mein noodles in a large bowl. Set aside. Then in a separate microwavable bowl pour the butterscotch morsels and add the peanut butter. Melting the mixture in 30 second increments. Be sure to stir after each 30 seconds.

Once the mixture is complete melted stir in the vanilla. Then pour it over chow mien noodles. Stir until the noodles are covered.  Using cooking spray, spray your muffin tin.

Next spoon the mixture in to the pan. Using your spoon dig little ditch into the center of each nest. (This is so your eggs will sit down inside of the nest, instead of on top of it.) Then place your eggs in the nest (This allows the eggs to stick in to the nest) Chill the Birds nest for about an hour.

Then using a butter knife remove the nest from the muffin pan and enjoy!!!

 

DIY Bunny Mask

It’s almost Easter and with the weather being crazy here my toddler is getting restless and so am I.  Honestly, there is only so many episodes of  P J Masks I can watch before I start twitching. (But at least my child’s not into Caillou! I can’t stand that show with that whinny little kid. I’ve literally dive for the remote, whenever I hear that dreaded intro song.) Today I wanted to mix things up a little bit with my little guy. Go a little old school by making Bunny Mask  and using our imaginations instead of turning on the tv. I’m going to show you how to make your very own Bunny Mask.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

1 Sheet of White Construction Paper

1 Sheet of Pink Construction Paper

Hot Glue Gun or Elmer’s Glue

3 Black Pipe Cleaners

1 Cotton Ball

Scotch Tape

Pencil

Hole Puncher

Scissors

String/Ribbion

Bowl

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Grab the pipe cleaners and cut them in half. Set aside. Then trace the bowl.  (You’ll want to pick a bowl that’s about the size of your child face.)

 

Next you’re going to slide the bowl up to the top of the circle you’ve already made. You are going to trace the one side of the bowl. Then move it over to meet the line you’ve perviously created. (This will be the rabbit ears)

Then you are going to cut the rabbit out and trace only the ears on the pink piece of construction paper. Once you’ve traced the ears, you’re going to draw the inner ear. (I just free handed it. It doesn’t have to be perfect just fun.)  When you’ve drawn the inner ear cut it out and glue it on the bunny.

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Using something small and round trace the eye holes. ( I used my reusable K-Cup thingy) Cut out the eye holes. ( I personally hate cutting the eye holes. They are they worst but I didn’t want my kid running into things.)

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Next you are going to glue on the nose and whiskers. Draw the mouth of the rabbit.

Lastly you are going to apply a piece of scotch tape on each side of the mask. Then punch a hole in the tape. (This insures that when you tie the ribbon or string to it, it won’t tear the paper.) Tie a piece of ribbon to either side of the mask. Then place the mask on your little one (or yourself) and let imagination and giggles take over. Enjoy!!

 

 

 

Rice Krispy Treat Messy Eggs

When I was living in Chicago back in 2010, I didn’t have anyone to spend Easter with. I wasn’t the only one alone for the holiday, a few of my other close friends were by themselves too. So we all decided to make our own Easter celebration. Together we made a pretty amazing dinner and then took a trip to the beach. It’s one of my fondest memories of my time in Chicago.

One of the desserts we made was Rice Krispy Treat Eggs. They were delicious. Now that I have a husband and a son, I want to make awesome memories with them. So what better way to create more memories than by taking something special from a past memory and putting a new twist on it. Today I’m going to show you how to make Rice Krispy Treat Messy Eggs.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

10 Cups of Rice Krispy Treats

1/2 Cup or 1 Stick of Butter

6 Cups of  Miniature Marshmallows

1 1/2  Teaspoons of Vanilla

1/4 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Bag of White Melts

Food Coloring  (A Variety of Colors)

Lollipop Sticks (Optional)

Plastic Easter Eggs

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In a large pot melt the butter on low heat. When the butter is melted, add 3 cups of marshmallows, the vanilla, and salt.

While waiting for the marshmallow mixture to reduce, pour the melts in a bowl. Then place it in the microwave for 30 second intervals until the melts are completely melted. Next stir, in the food coloring of your choice. Make as many different colors as you’d like. Then set aside.

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Once the marshmallows mixture is smooth. Then stir in the remaining marshmallows until they are melted.

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Then stir  Rice Krispies into the melted marshmallow mixture. Set aside.

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Take some butter or cooking spray and grease the inside of the plastic eggs.

 

Using a spoon or your hand fill both sides of the plastic egg with the Rice Krispy Treat mixture. Then close it to get the mold. Next, remove Rice Krispy Treat and place it on a baking pan. (Wax paper or Aluminum foil will save you on clean up) You may want to flatten the bottom out a little so it sits better on the pan or if you plan on placing it on a lollipop stick.

 

Once you have all of the eggs molded the real fun begins. Using a spoon drizzle your colored melts over the Rice Krispy Treats. Repeat this step using different colors, as much or as little as you want.Turn on some music and let the kiddos help out. (Tip: If your melts start to harden before you are finished place them in the microwave for an additional 30 seconds)

When that’s finished let them dry for a bit and then enjoy!!!

 

 

 

 

DIY Easter Stamps

I am always searching for new fun and cheap crafts to do with my son. When I came across this crazy inexpensive and easy diy project I knew that I had to give it try. Today I’m going to show you to make your very own DIY Easter Stamps.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

Potatoes (Any kind, just make sure they are big or small enough to fit in your child’s hand)

Ink or Paint

Small Knife or and Xacto Knife

Paper

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Start by cutting the potato in half.

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Using your knife score the design you’d like to make. Once you’ve achieved the design, cut the lines/shapes deeper into potato.

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Then you are going to start carving out the center section. (These aren’t going to be perfect, unless you are a professional potato carver or an artist, but you’re kids will enjoy them regardless.Trust me.)

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Next it’s time to dip your potato stamp in ink/paint and start creating some memories. ENJOY!!

 

 

Vegetable Frittata Muffins

I’ve been making  Vegetable Frittata Muffins since my son was able to eat solid food. It was my mission to make him love fruits and vegetables. The great thing about these is that they taste great, it’s healthy, and ridiculously easy to make. Today I’m going to show you how to make Vegetable Frittata Muffins.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

6 Eggs

1 Cup of Broccoli chopped

1/2 Cup of Bell Pepper Chopped

1/2 Cup of Tomatoes Chopped

1- 1/2 Cup of Any kind Cheese (I used Mild Cheddar)

Salt

Pepper

First pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.Then you’ll want to chop up your veggies. Next grab the cheese and shred it. (Tip: Block cheese is always cheaper then pre-shredded cheese) Also feel free to add any veggies you want. Experiment.

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Once that’s finished crack your eggs open and place in a large bowl. Using a fork, whisk the eggs.

Then add the veggies and cheese. Then salt and pepper to taste.  Stir well.

Grab a muffin pan and spray it with cooking oil. Then spoon the egg mixture in the muffin pan cups about 3/4 of the way full.

Bake for 20-22 minutes. Then Enjoy!!