Budgeting for Two: Affording Twins
Budget Your Baby Food: Breastfeeding is great for your babies and it’s free. If you opt to use formula, you can purchase used bottles and just buy new nipples. You can even make homemade baby food by mashing bananas and other soft foods yourself, rather than buying the expensive, pre-packaged food.
Find Freebies: Being a diligent researcher can pay off as a new parent of multiples. There are tons of free samples, baby items, and coupons available for parents all over the place, from magazines to formula and diaper companies, to the Internet. Also check the grocery ads for coupons that can help you cut expenses.
Downplay the Nursery: Just because your neighbors went all out for their baby’s nursery does not mean you have to do so as well. You can easily make a nursery look fantastic without breaking the bank. First off, cut out those items that are simply unnecessary such as wipe warmers, fancy comforters, fluffy pillows, or high-priced lamps; your little ones will be happy with a safe, clean room and a comfortable crib or two!
You can easily spruce up your babies’ space with a fresh coat of paint. And, if you have artistic skills, you can always add nifty borders, murals, or stencils to the walls. Your babies are likely to get darling stuffed animals, blankets, books, and trinkets as gifts. Install some simple shelving (where your growing babies won’t reach them) and use your little ones’ treasures to liven up the nursery.
Share and Share Alike: Some things your twins will be able to share. For example, you can purchase one crib and crib divider. Voila—one crib now serves two! This works particularly well as multiples are usually smaller than individual children. While your babies may outgrow this divider option at some part, it can be a great way to save money at the expensive start of parenthood. The same goes for strollers. Purchasing one double stroller is relatively cheaper than buying two single strollers.
Keep It Simple: Your twins will enjoy banging on pots and pans just as much as the latest expensive toy. Look for classic, inexpensive toys to stimulate imaginations. Find creative ways to turn everyday items into toys: a few coins into an empty film container (taped tightly shut) make a fun musical shaker, and measuring cups and spoons are perfectly entertaining at bath time. Remember, buying the most expensive toys will not automatically turn your kids into baby geniuses.
Having twins is an entirely different experience than having a single baby, but with planning and sacrifice, you can raise happy, healthy babies that both get the most out of life growing up with you.
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