Where's Margie's Money?

Category Archive

The following is a list of all entries from the baby category.

Frugal mom tip #1: Make your own baby food

Around the time my little darling turned 6 months old she started becoming extremely interested in the food on my plate. So, I decided it was time to start introducing solids. I knew that I really wanted to make my own food, but as a busy mom who works full-time outside of the home, I didn’t want to spend copious amounts of time in the kitchen. Luckily, I decided it was at least worth a try and I’m so glad I did!  As it turns out making baby food is super easy and amazingly inexpensive!

I bought these trays that basically look like ice cube trays with a sliding lid:

OXO Tot Baby Food Freezer Tray, White/Green


Then I bought a butter nut squash and a bunch of carrots (the carrots only cost $1 at my farmer’s market!).  I peeled and diced the veggies and put them on the stove to steam. 


Then, I pureed the veggies in my food processor:


 And the last step was putting the puree into the trays!


 So easy! I got 24 “cubes” of squash and 8 “cubes” of carrots. Each cube is 1 oz and right now she is eating about 2 oz of veggies at dinner. I estimate that I spent $4 total on the produce which equates to only 25 cents a meal! Jars of organic baby food are priced at 70 cents at my local grocery store. The savings is in the pennies but it all adds up! Plus I have the piece of mind of knowing that my little one’s food is fresh and locally grown without any additives or perservatives.

She loves squash and carrots!

If you are a mom, do you make your own baby food? What was your baby’s favorite fruit or vegetable?


Hello out there?!

Oh man, what a crazy 5 – almost 6 – months its been.  I’ve been wanting to come back to the blog world for awhile but life has been cray-ZEE.

My last 6 months in a nutshell:

  • Returned to work full-time after a glorious 13 week maternity leave at the beginning of November.
  • Struggled with adjusting to my new reality and multiple rolls as mother, career-woman and wife.
  • Struggled with my baby adjusting to daycare -working mother’s guilt set in.
  • Moved to a larger (and more expensive) apartment in mid November.
  • The holidays brought a whirlwind of friends and family into town to visit and meet the little one.
  • In January I turned 32 (ah!).
  • The Monday after my b-day, my husband tore his Achille’s heel tendon while playing softball in a work league.
  • For the last four weeks, hubby has been hobbling around the house with a cast and crutches (he had elective surgery mid-January). 
  • With a new baby, a career and an injured out-of-comission husband, I found myself absolutely frazzeled.
  • Last week, husband got his cast off and now he’s in a walking boot – he’s learning to walk again but still using crutches.  This means I’m still shouldering his side of the household duties like grocery shopping, meal preparing, cleaning, and all of the baby-care because he still can’t do much. 

So, yeah, it’s been crazy.  And my little sugar plum?  She’s not exactly cooperating with the whole sleeping through the night thing. AND I’m still breastfeeding – which is something that I’ve happily committed myself to until she’s at least one.  This requires pumping at work 3 times a day (when possible – sometimes only 2).  Thankfully she now takes the bottle while at daycare (but what a stressful process THAT was!).

Finance-wise I have not made any true progress.  Looking at my numbers posted to the left back in August shows me that I’ve actually backslid about $80 in debt.  I have definitely lost a bit of my focus.  But I want it back! 

So, people, I’m making it a goal to participate weekly in MPP’s weekly finance check-ups and to blog AT LEAST one other time during the week.  I’m pretty sure I can do that.  Also, I’m going to attempt to get back into commenting.  For the most part I’ve kept up with everyone!

Yay, it’s good to be back!

Here’s a recent photo of my little pumpkin pants:

She's a cutie!

Baby is napping

Oh. My. Goodness.  The angel is actually taking a nap and, for the THIRD time today, the nap doesn’t involve sleeping on my chest or in my arms.

She’s 6 weeks old now!  And I’d love to say that it’s gotten easier but it really hasn’t.  Sleep still is sporadic.  Sometimes she goes a solid 3-4 hours at a time.  Other nights we are up every 1.5 to 2 hours.

The last few days I’ve been trying to get her into the habit of napping during the day by herself.  Every time I’d put her down she’d fuss and cry until I picked her up again.  Today, it’s finally working! It still takes quite a bit of rocking and soothing, but once she’s asleep she’s stays asleep.  As soon as we have this down for a few days (knock on wood!) I’m going to start trying to get her to sleep in her bassinet instead of sleep-sharing with us in bed.

We found out last week that Baby has a spot at our number one choice day care. This center is actually located at my work which means that I can see her on my lunch break.  However, it’s also the most expensive: nearly $1,400 per month.  A week from Monday we have a meeting with the person in charge of the infant room to discuss everything we need to know and have our questions answered.

I still have another 6 weeks of maternity leave and I’m dreading going back to work.  It’s not that I want to stay home – because I don’t.  I actually miss my job and my co-workers!  But I will miss being away from her and I worry about her making the adjustment.  I know it will be ok and I’m so grateful  that she’ll be so close – just on the other side of campus – but still . . . it’ll be hard for the first few weeks.

DH goes back to work in 2 weeks.  It’s been so awesome to have him home with me! In fact, I think if we could afford it – we’d have him home all the time.  He’d love being a house husband – cooking and cleaning is totally his thing and he’s really good at it.  Who knows, perhaps we’ll get our wish.  I get the impression that DH’s company isn’t doing too well so we’ll see what happens.

Fiscally, I dropped a lot of money on my friend C’s bachelorette party.  I ended up going for only a few hours because AJ isn’t weaned onto the bottle yet but since I organized it I felt like I had to  at least make an appearance.  I estimate I spent about $300 when taking into account alcohol for the girls, my portion of the dinner, the hotel room, and appetizers and drinks.  One of the girls (that I don’t really know very well – one of C’s former co-workers) hasn’t paid me her share of the hotel ($80) and I’m debating whether or not I should approach her about it. The reason I’m considering not saying anything is that she got us a major discount on the dinner at a fancy steakhouse because she works there. I’m kind of hoping she just forgot about it and will remember when she gets back from her vacation to Italy.  Yes, Italy.  I might be jealous.

Okay, well AJ is waking up so I have to go!




A quick hello

I haven’t abandoned my blog!  It’s been an amazing 4.5 weeks – can’t believe it’s already been one full month since my little girl entered my world.  Ever since then life has been turned upside down but in a VERY good way.

“Hi, my name is AJ – and my mom put this sh*t on my head to commemorate my one month birthday.”

From a financial perspective, I haven’t spent much money since she was born . . . unless you take into account the $900 I spent (well, WE spent – DH and I) on newborn photos. 

Also, I paid the entire month’s rent ($1,500) because DH hasn’t received his first FMLA payment yet and it’s been 4 weeks . . . and I think it’s my fault (I’m afraid I filled in a bubble wrong on the form). So even though he has written me a check for his share and INSISTS that I deposit it, I am equally determined NOT deposit his money into my account until he gets his money.

Next weekend is my friend C’s bachelorette party which I’m hosting as MOH.  I put the hotel room (that I’m not staying at because HELLO I’ve got an almost 5-week-old that is still breastfeeding!) on my credit card (I KNOW) and while I’ve paid off my share of the bill I’m waiting for the three other girls to reimburse me. 

Oh, and I bought $150 worth of clothes online from Old Navy/Gap/Banana Republic. . . some of it might get returned since my body is not the wonderland it was pre-pregnancy (I’m an entire size larger now and clothes just don’t fit the same thanks to the enormous boobs and new mom hips/tummy pooch) but I needed SOMETHING to wear that didn’t have elastic sewn into the waistband.  Hopefully these will just be transitional clothes until I can get my old body back (please, don’t burst my bubble).

Okay, so I guess I HAVE spent money in the past month – it’s just on different stuff because I haven’t entered a grocery store in forever and I drove my car for the first time today.

My goodness, I am SO behind in my blogs.  My google reader says that I have 1,000 + blogs to read. It’s so overwhelming I’m tempted to reset it all to zero and start again but I know I won’t do that.  So, I’m not commenting much but definitely know I’m reading (as I can) and that I hope to be back on a more regular basis again one day soon!




She’s here!!

Baby AJ arrived 10 days ago on August 11 (8 lb, 6 oz, 21.5 inches long)!  She is the sweetest little baby ever and I fell instantly head over heels in love. 

Here’s a glimpse of the preciousness!:

She looks A LOT like her daddy (he’s Samoan).

I think the long walk the day before is what kicked my body into gear!  But even so, labor lasted 18 hours and the only way I can describe it is “intense.” The day began at 3:30 a.m. when my water broke (I didn’t end up needing the 2nd acupuncture appointment after all!) and ended at 11:43 p.m. But those 18 hours went by relatively quickly (I truly lost a sense of time as I focused on breathing through contractions with the support of DH – he was an amazing birth partner!).  I remember at one point (I think I was going through transition) saying to DH that I was NEVER going to do this again!  But as soon as she was born all of that pain went away and all I knew was the absolutely joy of holding her.  When she was placed on my chest for the first time just seconds after her birth, both DH and I cried tears of joy!  I remember thinking in those first few moments, “I can’t believe we ever lived without her – I feel so complete.”

The last week and a half have been an absolute whirl wind as DH and I have adjusted to our new role as parents.  We sleep when we can and spend the rest of the time feeding, changing, burping, and snuggling her – I love tummy time with her against my chest.  I can spend hours just sitting on the sofa just watching her and admiring her tiny, perfect features.

Can you tell I’m smitten?

From a personal finance perspective, I’ve barely spent any money at all.  About $20 on items from the pharmacy for me, $9 on dinner one night, $11.46 on frozen yogurt (our first trip out of the house just the three of us), and $58 on Amazon.com on some breastfeeding related items.  I haven’t moved my car once in the last 10 days and I don’t foresee driving for at least another week so gas is going to be a super low expense this month.

Finally, I thought I’d share what baby items I’ve found to be absolutely awesome and what items I bought that I haven’t gotten any use out of as of yet.

What’s in:

Sleepers/jammies that zip up rather than button up (baby hates to be changes and gets super squirmy/fussy.  It’s SO much faster to zip her up rather than fiddle with all the buttons.  I only have two sets of jams that zip up and when they are clean they are my favorites!

Swaddleme blankets!  These are basically little sacks with flaps that you wrap around baby to secure her arms to her sides. AJ can break out of the tightest swaddles with the standard receiving blankets but these wrap her up so snug that she can’t break free.  Swaddling is one of the 5 S’s recommended in The Happiest Baby on the Block – the BEST baby book I read during my pregnancy.  During the day she sleeps unswaddled so she can exercise her little arms and legs but at night when she gets fussy we’ll wrap her up in one of these and she falls asleep – and STAYS asleep – much better.

What’s out:

The Boppy

My Brestfriend Pillow

Breastfeeding pillows – both the Boppy AND the My BrestFriend (worst name EVER for a product, BTW).  I bought the Boppy and was given the MBF but haven’t found either to be very comfortable.  Instead I’ve been using just a plain old bed pillow covered in a blanket! Maybe when she gets bigger these will get used, particularly the Boppy as it can be used for tummy time but I dunno.

I have SO many blogs to catch up – slowly I’ll be making my way through my blogroll!  Thanks for hanging with me during my hiatus.  I know my postings will be more sporadic for a while but I’ll definitely try to check in at least once a week.