Saturday, June 4, 2011

Making Maternity Leave Work

In Canada, we are lucky enough to get paid by the government to stay home with our baby for maternity leave for a full year.  Unfortunately, that pay is only 55% of your salary.  This is really going to stretch us financially.  Here are some of the ways we are going to make it work!  Please share ideas for more!

  • Luckily my maternity leave coincides with my final payment on my car.  That will be $250 less per month I will have to pay to the bank!
  • No work = less gas driving back and forth
  • No work = less lunches out (though, this only adds up to like $10-15 per week)
  • Losing baby weight = eating less take out
  • Meal planning = eating less take out
  • Meal planning means throwing out less perishable food as well.
  • Being home also means I will have time to do more large cooking sessions.  This is where you can really stretch a dollar.  If I buy meat/produce in bigger quantities and cook several meals at once I can save money!
  • My husband has said he is going to cut back on his takeout coffee and drink the free stuff at work more.  That resolution only lasted a day last week but hopefully he gets on that track!
  • He is also going to talk to his boss' about possibly using his gas card for my gas once in awhile.  (His dad owns part of the company, so this might fly!)
  • We buy all diapers and wipes in big bulk packs to save more money.
  • We only buy store brand junk food from now on (ie chips)
  • I have put together a big list of free or cheap ideas to keep the kids busy over the summer so I am not spending money on things just to get them to leave me alone (ie movies and waterparks)
  • I am going to start couponing more!
  • Oh, the other thing I am going to do is that when I want fast food and then cook Kraft Dinner instead, I am going to put the money I would have spent on Fast Food into my savings account!  Then we can use that as our summer fun money!
Any ideas for saving more money or cheap/free things to do with 2 school age kids and a baby over the summer, please post in the comments!

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