You know what’s expensive? Babies. The medical costs of pregnancy, the childcare, the weird gear. They are cute but they don’t come cheap.

Elizabeth, Shoestring Baby author. Terrible at pregnancy, great at frugality.

When I was pregnant, I spent a lot of time online looking for in-depth articles on optimizing my baby finances (and I do mean a lot of time — I was on modified bed rest for almost 8 months). But a lot of sites only have passing posts here-and-there on tips to save money on babies and kids. Piecing information together from so many different sites was arduous, and it still felt like it was only scratching the surface. There are a lot of financial considerations and possible savings opportunities with pregnancy and parenthood!

I started Shoestring Baby to focus in on personal finance and money savings for parents — and prospective parents — of young children. Because our babies don’t have to be adorable little money pits. And a lot of money-saving efforts, like opting for secondhand baby gear, have the added benefit of being better for the environment too.

I’ve always been pretty penny-pinching, but having a baby gave me laser focus on financial security and the environmental impact of consumerism. While stuck at home with hyperemesis and a lackluster cervix, I managed to get nearly all our baby gear used and/or free through local community and online groups.

I’ve also been tracking every last baby expense we’ve had since the start of my pregnancy. I break down how much we spend and save each month in my Monthly Baby Spending Reports (spoiler alert: we’ve saved thousands of dollars).

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Our son was born last fall, a healthy late preemie. He’s made pretty much exclusively of anti-nausea meds and vegetarian hot dogs since I had that’s about all I could eat while pregnant. A personal side goal of this site is to share my pregnancy challenges, because women’s health and pregnancy complications like hyperemesis and cervical incompetence don’t get enough attention or research. So if you don’t want to hear about my pelvic floor, you may want to move on to another site.

In a past life, I spent time in academia advising business students and earned a PhD researching how pregnancy impacts social networks and educational achievement of young moms.

I’m glad you’re here and am excited to share with you the cheap thrill of scoring a great used high chair (while keeping another high chair out of a landfill!). Plus, my partner is sick of me talking to him about how I saved $8 on a free changing pad, so it’s nice to have someone else to talk to about this stuff, you know?

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