It seems like I’m constantly spending money on my baby. He doesn’t have an excessive number of toys (until I started monitoring in mid-April, I’d bought him only two toys). I try to buy enough clothes but not too many. We haven’t been to that many baby groups (partly because he naps at the wrong times) and we try to go along to the free ones at the library. Even so, it feels as though he needs something almost every day.
In May, I decided to track what I spent on him and see how much was necessary expenditure. As I am a month into my final 3 (unpaid) months of maternity leave, I’ll need to ensure I’m keeping within budget.
|Feeding*||£6.09||A couple of baby jars plus one-off purchases of free-flow sippy cups|
|Changing||£38.50||Mostly nappies. Our biodegradable ones were on offer this month so we got a couple of extra packs to carry us into next month|
|Health||£18.25||Baby’s first toothpaste! |
Plus some bits and bobs to help us manage his nasty cold, and SPF 50 sun lotion
|Clothes||£31.49||Some replacement items he’s grown out of, as well as some bigger sizes that were on offer.|
|Toys||£21.87||Ouch!! This was the month I decided to put together a sensory basket for him, so I’ve shelled out £7 for a sensory ball, £6 for a beautiful hand kite and £6 for a soft storage basket.|
|Entertainment||£6||As nap time has been coinciding with lots of baby groups, this is really quite low. We also try to take advantage of free activities, like going to the park on nice days and free sessions at the library|
|Equipment||£77.99||One big ticket item- a baby monitor. This has always been in the budget, although we only purchased this month along with a pushchair sunshade|
*Feeding includes tins of formula (where purchased), specific jars/ pouches of baby food and any utensils. As he predominantly eats what we eat, I haven’t worked out how much, if any, uplift in our food shop can be attributed to him.
How well did we do?
Well, due to my natural tendency to avoid spending money in general (and probably the reason I feel like I’m spending every day), our expenses are naturally kept in check to some extent.
I don’t think £200 is a hideous amount to spend on a baby in a month, even if most of his food is excluded.
It’s difficult to see a full picture when I try to spread the costs of his clothes through the year and we tend to buy as we need with equipment (maybe paying a little more, but purchasing fewer items that we don’t use and therefore saving money overall).
I had all the best intentions of doing this again across May and June, but unfortunately life (read: parenting) has gotten in the way. I definitely want to do it again though, to see what similar expenses come up and whether there are any more big ticket items that account for a significant proportion of our spending.
Watch this space for more on what our baby costs month by month…