Whether your teen is signed up for a home economics class or you are teaching them to take care of their own chores, you know that there are life skills that every person needs. Here are three skills that will save them both grief and money.
Learning to cook can save our new adult a lot of money when they are just starting out on their own. It’s not just the amount of money that they will save not buying fast food or going to restaurants. It will also save them money when it comes to grocery shopping. They will waste less food by cooking it correctly and not burning it. It may also save them in medical expenses in the long run by both healthier eating as well as safe cooking practices. When getting them apartment warming gifts be sure to include things like a book of half hour recipes, a crock pot, or a rice cooker. It makes cooking easier, promotes saving through cooking, and provides diverse ways to make food.
Clothing care can also save money for our new adult. Clothes can be ruined when the wrong washer or dryer settings are used. They can be discolored when we use the wrong temperature of water. Let’s not forget that special fabrics need to be dry cleaned. In addition to this, there are basic clothing mending skills such as sewing on a button or re-sewing a seam that will save them from having to buy brand new clothes. Learning to sew or iron on patches can also prolong the life of clothing. Prolonging clothing life saves a good deal of money.
I know that this seems like an obvious way to teach a teenager or young adult to save money. But it didn’t stop some people I knew from thinking that as long as they had checks in their checkbook they had money in the bank… regardless of the bank balance. Show your children the cost of certain monthly bills, how to set up electrical or phone service. Also, show them what services they can do without when money is tight.
These three basics will put most newly on their own adults on the path to financial success, and surprisingly far ahead of most of their peers. 😉
Good parenting doesn’t just help our children grow into well adjusted adults, it also helps us save money and stress. Here’s how:
Children are still in the learning stages of self control. For the most part they don’t understand the family budget or the concept of waiting. This means that from time to time they will have a melt down on the grocery store because they can’t have a toy or certain candy. I know how embarrassing this can be, but that doesn’t mean that a tantrum should be rewarded. In fact children will only eventually upgrade the price of their silence over time. That candy bar may only be a dollar today, but one day they will want a hockey stick or the latest cell phone. Not giving in to our child now will save your family money and teach our children self control in the future. Trust me! It’s worth enduring the strange looks from strangers as we haul our toddlers out of the store or let the tantrum run its course.
Childproofing the home seems like an exercise in futility sometimes. I have had a child “helpfully” open medicine bottles for me, knock down safety gates, and break into the childproofed medicine cabinets. In fact they often do it while I am having trouble with the device myself. Childproofing may seem futile, but is well worth the effort. It does buy parents time enough to get across the room to the exploring child. Besides this, childproofing items are something that can be bought or passed down used which would cost less money
In addition to keeping our children safe, it sets up a habit making safety a priority. We get proper car seats, make sure our kids wear their bicycle helmets, and keep first aid items handy. Not only does this save us money on medical expenses, it saves us the emotional price of having not made the effort.
I was talking to our nurse at the pediatric center the other day, and was surprised to hear that many parents choose not to have their children immunized. This isn’t because of religious beliefs or lack of money. Instead it is because they fear their child may have an adverse reaction to the shots administered. Others just don’t want their child to feel any discomfort, including getting poked with a needle. While I understand these feelings, it it far better to give a child a vaccine than have them get sick and need a transplant. Vaccines don’t just save money in the long run by stopping illness, they also can save our children from experiencing those illnesses to their full potential.
How do you save money as a parent?
We don’t wait for the baby to be born. We stock up before then with the essentials that a baby needs. We find it reduces stress, saves time, and on those months our budget is tight, we are happy we stockpiled while we had the money.
For The Backside
We could never have too many diapers, to many wipes, or enough Desitin. The trick to stocking up on diapers is to remember that the baby will grow. Buy two or three sizes to ensure the diapers continue to fit without having a diaper-less scramble. Nothing is as nerve racking than realizing there is only one diaper left.
This item is a must even if I’m breast feeding. I have been in situations where what I was producing was not enough to feed my baby. I didn’t feel guilty. I fed my baby formula and was thankful to have it. Even without these issues it’s good to have formula on hand for babysitters or for cases of emergency. It’s also good to have some water on hand just in case water is lost for a time due to construction or other uncontrolable events.
Things For Mommy
It’s just as important for mom to stock up on the things that she is going to need. This could be nipple cream, different types of bottles, or soothing music. By the time the baby is born it’s too late. You will either find yourself sending your spouse to the store or crying from exhaustion, or both.
They say it’s never too early to start teaching your children good habits. I am sure all of us Thrifty Divas agree that teaching our children about money is very important. It will give them a good foundation to start their money management skills. I can attest that I learned both my thrifty as well as my spendy ways from my parents. It’s very important to lay a solid foundation to help ensure your children can take care of themselves and their families when the time comes. Wise spending and a healthy concept of money is an amazing gift you can give your children.
Here are a few tips for helping your children understand money.
1. Make the most of every money teaching opportunity. If you are at the bank, explain to your children what you are doing. When you pay with a check, use your credit/atm card or even if you donate money to the Salvation Army at Christmas, explain everything you do with money. That will get their little minds going.
2. Give them a piggy bank. This seems obvious doesn’t it? But the kind of piggy banks that you can’t get into unless you break it is an incredible tool for teaching about money. First of all it forces you to save and doesn’t allow your children to give into instant impulses.
3. Have them earn their money. We want our children to understand that money is something you earn and not just something you are given. Without an appreciation for money, they will be more likely to waste it. Chores are an awesome way for your kids to earn it. Have certain chores earn certain amounts. This is also a good time to require them to put away a certain percentage of what they’ve earned to go towards savings.
4. Coupon with them! It’s never too early to teach your kids about coupons. Even something as simple as just letting them cut the coupons (if they are old enough) will help spur conversation. You can have them find the items your coupons are for at the store. I very fondly remember my mom taking me to Kroger as a kid with coupons. We had a lot of fun with it.
How do you teach your children about money?
Have you heard of minimalist parenting and lifestyles? I recently heard about it on the Today Show and did some more research because it seemed Thrifty. Of course anytime you eliminate buying some things, you will spend less money. However this parenting/lifestyle movement seems to be much more.
The jury is still out for me personally, but I do think this is great to think about and obviously will save you money.
The basic premise: Own Less, Do More.
Seems pretty simple huh?
A woman who calls herself the minimalist mom is taking this very seriously. To begin this journey they got rid of their car and half of their belongings. Because of this lifestyle they’ve paid off over $60,000 in debt in one year alone!
A few steps towards minimalsm…
1. Purge. Go through your stuff and get rid of it. You don’t need a dozen of similar items. Stick to just a few and reuse. Make life simpler.
2. Go through the toys. A lot of parents following this movement want few toys and more use of imagination and play with their children themselves.
3. Less in your pantry. This truly means only buying what you’ll use. No reason to have a ton of stuff in your pantry that takes up space and may never be used.
This way of life intrigues me although I don’t think I’ll be giving up my minivan anytime soon 😉
What do you think about it?
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