I know I’m not the first to point out that kids are expensive, but I’ve been surprised at the ways the babies have changed my money-spending habits. It isn’t that I have to buy so much stuff. (It’s easy to find used baby items, most things that seem must-have when you’re pregnant turn out not to be necessary, and baby stuff can be resold when you no longer need it.)
But what I didn’t foresee is the convenience cost. Here are some ways I used to save money:
Take the subway out to the airport to get the cheapest car rental.
Spend hours looking through markdown clothes at Daffy’s to find great deals.
Get free boxes when I moved by making trips back and forth to a nearby grocery store.
Stop at the grocery store on the way home and carry everything back on the subway.
And those are just a few examples. Post-baby, there’s no time for that. There are two weekend days each week, when my husband and I are both home, in which to get everything done. Or there are tasks, very few, that can be completed with two babies in tow. There is no longer an option in which one of us is spending lots of time alone doing anything.
Here is how we now complete these tasks:
Get the nearest rental car, for twice the price.
Order full-price clothes online if necessary.
Spend lots of money buying moving boxes nearby.
Do a big shop once a week and take a car service home from the grocery store.
Time is money. I didn’t really understand it before, when I had so much time, when, now I see in retrospect, I was rich with time. When my weekends were a big luxury of uninterrupted couch lying, book reading and park walking, clothes rack surfing alone time. Now it’s all Thank You Amazon.com. And there’s another big box of “not the cheapest possible diapers” delivered right to my door.
But of course, I shouldn’t complain. There are worse things than being forced to get home delivery.