How to Save Money on Babies

If you think saving money with a baby around is impossible, this article is definitely for you. Having babies doesn’t mean losing control over your monthly expenses or personal finance at all. In this part, we are going to take a look at some of the best money saving tips you can apply to save money on babies.

Cook, don’t buy. Learn how to cook your kids’ meals they like and stop buying packaged baby foods to save money. Most of the menus are actually very easy to prepare while the ingredients needed to cook the foods are more affordable than ever. Another prominent benefit of cooking your kids’ meals is the fact that you can pay close attention to the cleanliness of every meal properly.

Consider buying a food processor. Once you have mastered the basic menus, buy a food processor to help you cook faster and better. A food processor helps you save a lot of time and allows you to prepare more meals and snacks easily. Find a multi-purpose food processor that suits your budget and get started right away.

Use reusable diapers. Your baby uses up to 15 disposable diapers a day; imagine how much money you can save just by switching to reusable diapers. Modern reusable diapers are easy to clean and will help lower your everyday expenses substantially. You can even save more money by buying reusable diapers in sets or in bulk. Shop online to take advantage of discounts and special offers from retailers.

While saving money, you are also saving the environment. Disposable diapers, no matter how eco-friendly they are designed to be, are still less environmentally friendly than reusable diapers.

Buy used toys. Babies get bored with a toy rather quickly. Stop spending money on new toys and start opting for used toys instead. Used toys in superb condition are very easy to find online. The same tip can be applied to strollers, bed rails and other things you need to buy to keep your baby as safe and comfortable as possible.

Rely on online directories, parenting forums and other resources to find these items for free or at affordable prices. If you are lucky, you can also get these items from previously pregnant friends and relatives.

Last but not least, keep your babies entertained with computer games. There are more educational games than ever these days and they are all available at affordable prices or for free.

Baby Shower Games and Ideas

Below we have a suggested a few most popular baby shower games.

First, we would try to break the ice by asking all the guest to introduce themselves and how they know the proud parents. Below we have listed the most popular baby shower games to play during the baby shower:

Guess How Many Diapers:

Fill a clear container of size 1 diapers. Pass the container around and have the guest write down how many diapers they think are in the container. The person that comes closest to the diaper count wins a prize. The best part is that the mom-to-be wins also, she gets all the diapers in the container!

Nursery Rhymes:

See how many of your guests can remember their rhymes. After being given a single line from a nursery rhyme, can they remember the title of the rhyme it was from. Which rhyme has the line “like a diamond in the sky or to fetch a pail of water”? The guest with the most correct answers wins a prize.

Never say “Baby”:

Start by passing out a baby safety pin to all the guests. Whenever someone says the word “baby” during the shower, any guest that calls it out steals a pin from the other guest who called out the word. At the end of the baby shower, the guest with the most pins wins a prize.

Baby Shower Games

Poopy and Smelly Diapers:

Melt 10 different types of chocolate (Snickers, Milky Way, Mr. Goodbar, etc.) in each diaper. Give the guest a pen and paper and pass around the diapers and have each guest take a sniff and write down the name of the chocolate. Be creative with your candy bars. Mounds bars will create chunky poo, and Reeses Peanut Butter Cups will create a light brown poo. Whoever guesses the most correctly wins.

The Taste Test:

Purchase 10 different baby food jars. Take off the labels jars. Pass around one jar at a time and have the guests write down the flavor of the food (carrots, peas, sweet potato). If there is a tie, blindfold both women and have them taste one of the jars and guess the right flavor to win a prize.

TV Family Game:

Pass out a pen and a sheet of paper to each guest. On the paper have the names of popular television show families (old and new). Set an alloted time frame and have each guest name the children of that TV family. For example, if the clue was Dan and Roseanne Conner, the guests would need to write DJ, Becky, and Darlene. The guest with the most correct answers wins!

*A few television families to use are:
The Brady Bunch, Married with Children, Family Guy, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, The Cosby Show, The Simpsons, Full House, Reba

Baby Shower Gift Opening Bingo:

It is traditional to have everyone watch the mommy-to-be open the baby shower gifts at the end of the shower. Sometimes, people may get bored, especially if there are a lot of gifts. A great idea is to have a baby shower present BINGO game. Place numbers on all the gifts and make bingo cards for every baby shower guest that is still there for the present opening. When the mommy-to-be grabs a gift, she lets everyone know the gift number and these numbers coincide with the bingo numbers. The baby shower guest(s) to get bingo wins a prize. Continue reading

Finding a Children’s Entertainer

Sorting out the entertainment for your child’s party can be a difficult and stressful process. These tips, based on experience, should help make booking an entertainer a smooth, trouble free process. (Note, they are written from a UK perspective but are relevant in any country.)

1. Make sure the entertainer confirms everything in a letter or contract.

When you have agreed all the details for your party, make sure the entertainer sends you a confirmation letter or contract from the entertainer that clearly sets out the costs, timings and commitments from both parties. A professional entertainer should make all their terms and conditions available to you anyway.

2. Does the entertainer have insurance?

Booking a children’s entertainer without Public Liability Insurance is a bit of a risk in the current litigation-happy society. If you are hiring a venue, you should also check insurance requirements with them. Many hotels and party venues now insist that entertainers have Public Liability Insurance. Don’t be afraid to ask for evidence of insurance from entertainers who claim to have it.

3. Has the entertainer had a Criminal Records Bureau check?

Many professions, such as teachers, who have regular contact with children must have a Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check. Although a self-employed children’s entertainer does not have to be CRB checked, most professional entertainers will be able to supply you with evidence that they have gone through the process. There may well be similar checks in countries outside the UK.

4. Check that the cancellation policy and payment terms are completely clear.

Ensure you know how the payment is handled and that it is clearly laid out the contract or confirmation letter. Some entertainers will take a non-refundable booking fee or some may require a deposit which is refundable. Some may require the balance paid after the performance or party or want to sort it out before they begin.

5. Make sure you understand what the quoted fee does and does not cover.

Are all the materials, such as presents and balloons, etc. included in the fee? Does it include VAT (or other taxes outside the UK) and travelling expenses? If extra children arrive at the party, will there be an additional cost? Unexpected costs can make payment time at the end of a party a little uncomfortable!

6. Are you completely comfortable with the performance content?

This may seem obvious, but little details such as the entertainer incorporating juggling in their act and you having a very low ceiling could cause problems on the day of the party. So check the obvious such as the ages the performance is suitable for, the length of the performance and details about what the performance involves.

7. Know the performer’s requirements.

Make sure you are fully prepared by understanding what the performer needs in the way of power supplies, space, furniture, etc. Check if they can perform outside and inside if it rains. It is likely that an experienced professional children’s entertainer will question you to ensure their requirements are met..

8. Do you want any optional extras?

Many performers offer optional extras as part of their show, such as give-ways and presents. Some may even include the as standard. Check if there is any additional costs involved and make sure they are suitable for all the children at the party. Examples include balloon models, photo’s, and party bags with toys and gifts.

9. Check the levels of supervision required by the performer.

Many entertainers have a specific adult to child ratio so they can ensure children are adequately supervised. It is important you can meet these requirements and you know what happens if the audience is larger than expected.

10. Book in plenty of time.

Good children’s entertainers book up quickly, especially on weekends during the summer. When organising the entertainment for your party, it can be useful to have several dates in mind, especially if you are interested in a particular entertainer.

Unique Baby Shower Gifts

If you are throwing a baby shower, then the guests will all want to bring gifts for the baby. This is a lovely and generous thing for them to do. However, it can be frustrating for the Mother-to-be if she received lots of gifts that are very similar and does not get the things that she really needs. It may therefore be thoughtful for the organiser of the shower to put together a gift list.

It is a good idea to work together with the Mother-to-be on the list. Talk to them about what things they already have for the baby so you can work out what they need. There are lots of things that you can consider and it is good to have different types of things on the list.

baby Duvet Covers

Mementos

Many people like to give things that can be kept and treasured. These things could include money boxes, bunting, pictures and other gifts that the child will want to keep as they get older. Jewellery shops have this sort of thing, although many items may be felt to be more suitable for a christening gift rather than for a baby shower. However, it will all depend on the Mother-to-be wants.

Practical Things for Baby

Some people enjoy buying gifts that will be useful. They may want to buy things like prams, cots, bedding, baby bath, clothing, nappies and things like that. These can be great gifts because they will save the Mother having to buy them herself and so save her money.

Fun Things for Baby

Some people enjoy buying fun gifts for the baby. Things like teddies and toys perhaps baby gyms or other games that they may like when they are a bit older. Some even like buying books because babies can be read to at any age.

Things for Mother

Some people like to spoil the mother-to-be. There are lots of things that she could have. Flowers are always a nice gift as well as pampering toiletries. It can be lovely to be able to give her lovely things as once she has her child, she will not get a chance to spoil herself. Whether it is something to make her look good such as clothes or accessories or something for the home, she will welcome many things. She may even want to make her bed more cosy as she will need quality sleep and so choosing form a great range of duvet covers or something like that could be a good idea.

Throwing a Great Baby Shower

A baby shower is a wonderful opportunity for friends and family to come together to show their love and support of an expectant mother. If you’ve been given the privilege of throwing a baby shower for the mother-to-be in your life, you want the day to be extra special for her. Decorating the space creatively, organising fun games, and choosing a tasty menu are all important components of a great baby shower. Use this article as a guide for creating a baby shower that everyone—especially the mother-to-be—will enjoy:

Invitations

A great baby shower begins with the right invitations. One cute idea is to send your invitees pictorial or video e-cards with a personalised message from the mum-to-be. E-cards don’t get easily lost or delayed like regular mail, and make it very convenient for your invitees to quickly RSVP. Make sure to send the invitations out at least five weeks in advance to give your guests enough time to RSVP and go gift shopping.

Decorating

When it comes to choosing a shower theme, consult with the mum-to-be. Does she want a shower that emphasises the sex of the baby? If so, you could choose a fairy tale or princess theme that uses a pink colour scheme to welcome in a new girl, or a safari or toy car theme with a blue colour scheme for a boy. Gender-neutral ideas include storks, baby cribs, and baby bib decorations. Banners, balloons, and flower centrepieces all help to create a festive atmosphere.

Food

Finger foods and desserts are the most common foods served at baby showers. If you’re hosting the shower at a hotel or restaurant, they’ll likely prepare a small menu for you and your guests. If you’re planning the menu yourself, tea sandwiches, mini quiches, fresh fruits, and vegetables with a tasty dip all make great party foods. A themed cake or individual cupcakes are two dessert favourites.

Games

One fun game is to ask each invitee to bring a photograph as herself as a baby. Collect all of the photos as your guests arrive and play a game in which your invitees must match each baby picture with its adult counterpart.

Challenge your guests to envision—and create their own version—of what the mum-to-be’s baby will look like. Round up a stack of old magazines that guests can cut facial features from and have them paste their creations on a separate sheet of paper. The mum-to-be will choose the winner.

Other fun activities include baby bingo, baby trivia, baby words scrambler, and fill-in-the-blank nursery rhymes. The more creative you get, the more fun your guests are sure to have.

Gifts

Have the mum-to-be register for the items she needs at her favourite store and send a notice of the registry with all the invitations. Most guests won’t be able to resist buying clothes, toys, and blankets for the new baby, but be sure not to forget about the mum! She might appreciate a stylish, discrete nappy bag or a basket full of goodies she can pamper herself with once the baby arrives.

Favours

Don’t forget about the party favours! Baby bottles and baby socks filled with assorted candies make cute favours, as well as tea bags, candles, and pots with fresh cut flowers. All of these mementos communicate a simple “thank-you” to your guests for their attendance and support.

Baby Showers: Modern verses Traditional

Some would argue that a baby shower is an American invasion amongst the pregnancy of someone from the UK. Although people may have previously had celebrations prior to the birth of their baby, they were certainly not as common as they are today. Many parents expect one of their friends, or actually themselves, to throw a baby shower. What the shower consists of is purely up to either the friends or the parent-to-be, and there are a variety of ways in which the shower can head. Although the main purpose is to literally ‘shower’ the baby, or parent, with gifts, it has been common in the UK over recent years for the shower to turn into a more typical party atmosphere!

Traditionality and Baby Showers

The traditional baby shower was thrown in order to shower the baby with gifts, and it was generally only accepted to be thrown for the first born child, I’m sure we all remember having plenty of clothes handed down! The baby shower would also be an opportunity for the parents and family members of the parent-to-be, to pass on knowledge that they had gained through the various pregnancies they had been through. While this probably still happens, there is no doubt that the original premise has been hijacked. Today parents throw a variety of different showers, both with friends and family, and it is generally expected that guests bring presents for the baby. There is no doubt that someone who had a baby shower in the US in the early 1900s would be extremely shocked by the kind of baby showers we experience today!

A “Modern” Baby Shower Nightmare

Although we’ve reached a point where baby showers are more about the gifts and the company you have, rather than passing on advice, the modern baby shower does not necessarily run smoothly; much like some pregnancies! Sometimes the baby shower is ‘organised’ by parents, and they seem to forget that the baby shower is for your own baby, not theirs. This might lead to some very awkward games being played with people you barely know, when all you wanted was to share a few drinks (strictly non-alcoholic!) with your friends. That being said, people have experiences baby showers where one too many drinks have been consumed by Auntie Mabel who you haven’t seen for 10 years, and she regales you with all the horror stories of her pregnancy.

Perhaps a pointer would be making sure you control the guest list! If you want the baby shower to be as successful as you would like it to be then organise it yourself, the last thing you want to happen is your baby shower to be one to forget. At the end of they day, your pregnancy is your pregnancy, and your baby shower should be your baby shower – whilst remembering your soon to be born baby as well.

Importance Of Baby Shower Themes and Gift Baskets

In many countries today, a lot of people celebrate the baby shower event. The event itself is to celebrate the coming of the new born. The parents hold a party where guests are invited and they bring gifts for the mother. The term ‘shower’ actually means that the expecting mother of the child is showered with gifts.

The whole event is organized using themes that best describes how the parents see their new born. The theme is what puts life into the event; it ensures that the held party is fun, entertaining and a very memorable experience for both the parents and the guests.

Before selecting a theme, it is really important to jolt down points about the baby shower theme that you are going to use. Important points such as where is the event supposed to be held, what will be the food, what will be the location decorated with and whom to invite.

Many women like the idea of a theme that surrounds around a tea party; there are gift baskets that go along with the tea party. Gift baskets are ideal for any theme as they provide life to any theme that is decided.

How Can You Make Your Baby Shower Theme A Unique One

Baby shower is a joyful event, especially for the mum. If anyone out there can make something on their own, they should. Anything made by your own hand means that you really put your heart into it as opposed to buying things from shops. Here are some unique decoration ideas for mums who really want to make a difference!

You can make a special bouquet and present them with unique decorations. You can put pacifiers in the middle of the bouquet to give it a unique look.  Take some small red and green silk flowers; wrap them around to form a cone. Cover the cone with gold foils and tie it with a ribbon which would wound itself around the pacifier’s base and comes out of the loop of it.  In addition to this, you can add a diaper pin on one side of the foil with a pearl in the middle.

You could also make a cot using origami. Make dozens of these and wrap them with red and yellow ribbons around their tops to give a feel of quilt. In the middle, you can attach a pacifier with small silk flowers on them. These unique baby shower theme ideas can really bring out your love for the new born.

Easy Home-Made Baby Shower Themes

Baby shower themes are important for parents as they are held to celebrate the birth of a new born. Many people resort to themes that are easily made in the home rather than buying it from stores. Here are some ideas mothers can use to come up with a homemade theme.

You can start by making mint bags out of mesh. The requirements for these bags are two yards of netting for 15 bags each. After knitting the bags together, you can put chocolates or mints in them and cover them with a colorful ribbon. The next step is to make floating candles, which are easily made in home and adds up to the overall theme. The requirements for making these are wine glasses in the shape of a goblet. You can decorate their stem with flowers and ribbons. You can then purchase a set of candle molds and melt the wax and put it into the mold.  When the wax gets hard, you can carefully remove it.

Another popular idea amongst many mothers is a diaper cake. These cakes are easily made and can be decorated with diaper rash cream, spoon set or any items you would like.

Baby Shower Theme Ideas For A Baby Girl

If you are a first time parent expecting a baby girl, it is really important for you to come up with a perfect shower theme for your upcoming little baby girl.
A theme can really bring out an image of the party and there are several ideas for baby girls to choose from. Here are some of the very popular theme suggestions new parents often use.

For a girl, a theme can be as simple as putting up the color pink. Start with invitations, color your cards with bright pink and make cute little hearts on it. Choose pink blankets, pink banners and any other items that match the color of the theme. You can also highlight the theme as a shower for the cute little princess. Pink baby booties can be perfect for a sprinkle theme, where the invited guests are only asked to bring basic gifts for the parents. You can make a diaper cake with pink bibs and decorate it with cute toys.

A theme consisting of cute animals can also be a good idea for a girly theme; girls generally tend to love cute animals. You can decorate your theme by animal paintings that represent farm animals or jungle animals. Disney’s Pooh is a great idea to go with if you decide on going with the animal theme.