YOUR BEST DEFENSE AS A NEW PARENT IS TO BE PREPARED
Deciding what products to stockpile for your maternity leave and how much is no easy task.
It’s no secret that when you transition to maternity leave you will take a big hit to your regular monthly income.
What can make it even harder is that the adorable bundle of joy you just brought into the world additionally has a not so cute impact on your bank account.
So, how do you cope? Plan ahead!
They say hindsight is 20/20 and I fully believe it! This list is based on my own personal experience of what I wish I had stockpiled for our munchkin’s arrival.
The best items to stockpile are the ones that will help counteract the new expenses being introduced to your monthly budget while you still have a regular income, and simply to help you still live life with as little adjustment as possible!
If you are planning on using disposable diapers, try to have at least your first 3 months already on hand by the time baby arrives.
If you plan far enough ahead, you are given the luxury of waiting for clearance sales and coupons to combine with them to get your diapers at rock bottom prices.
A good rule of thumb is try to aim for $0.08-$0.10 per diaper or less. This will go up as the diapers increase in size as there will be fewer units per pack.
When calculating how many diapers you will need, keep in mind that for the first few months of your child’s life they will go through 10-12 diapers a day.
Related: Cloth Diapers vs. Disposable Diapers
So you can do the math depending on the size of diaper packs you purchase when you have enough for 3 months.
If you have decided to go the cloth diaper route make sure you have lots or your savings will go out the window in laundry expenses.
Stockpile Laundry Detergent
Since your laundry loads will likely triple in size and frequency you will want to have lots of laundry detergent on hand. This means you will need to source the lowest out-of-pocket price possible.
By doing this ahead of time and pairing sales with coupons or coupon apps when available you can stockpile and save at the same time. If you wait for the right sale and collect coupons, you should be able to get your laundry detergent for $1.99 a jug or less.
Stockpile Personal Care Items
Once your baby arrives, it will be very rare that you get a chance to treat yourself or even think to.
By stockpiling products such as your favorite health and beauty products you don’t need to feel as though you are going without.
What I did was wait for sales and paired them with any savings coupons or store promos to get the best deals. I managed to stockpile razors, shampoo, conditioner, face products, hand-cream, body cream and my favourite make-up.
Plus, you don’t need to spend money you don’t have to treat yourself.
It’s important not to forget about time for yourself when you become a parent.
There are many foods that can be stockpiled and keep for long periods of time such as pasta, dry beans, canned foods and many condiments.
You don’t want to feel like you are sacrificing normal life by having to eat spaghetti every night because it’s an easy meal to prepare.
Start now by making a list of all your favourite foods that can be stockpiled and start watching for sales.
You will want to make sure you are getting the nutrition you need whether you are nursing or not becuase you will need all the energy you can get.
My best suggestion for stockpiling food for your maternity leave is to do enough freezer cooking to last 6-8 weeks, so you can eat good healthy homemade meals once baby arrives, and all you need to do is pop it in the oven.
Stockpiling Fruits & Vegetables
Freezing sliced fruits and veggies is great for making quick smoothies and to add into your favourite meals. Besides, frozen vegetables are flash frozen at peak freshness so you don’t get them picked in advance like fresh produce.
Healthy produce in your meals will not only provide much-needed vitamins and nutrients to a nursing mom and baby but will give you the energy you need to get through your day on little sleep.
Trust me, you don’t get much sleep the first two years.
Stockpiling Paper Goods
Stockpiling necessities like toilet paper and paper towels is always a good idea.
They wont expire, you know they will be needed, and they are items that will affect your routine if you run out unexpectedly.
I hope this preparation not only helps ease the financial stress a new addition can bring to your life, but also clears some of the mental stress of worrying about the “stuff”, so you can spend your time enjoying your new little bundle instead.
Discussion: What other products can we add to help parents stockpile for maternity leave?
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