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172023 tn?1334675884
Finances and larger families
A couple of posts got me thinking (oh, Jeez!)

How do the people with larger families make ends comfortably meet, so they have plenty left over each month and also save for their childrens college funds?  Plus have enough socked away in savings for the unexpected?

I've always wondered.   When my children were growing up, it was a big concern for my former husband and myself, making ends meet well enough that we could always contribute to saving for the kids college.  And have at least 1 month's income set aside in an emergency fund in case something happened.  (and that's a pittance--you are supposed to have at least 3 months salary set aside)

Anyway, just wondering how you all do it!  It has to be very difficult, saving that much.  Especially Jenny100--I'm startled that you are going to have #8.  We could barely afford 2 kids, and there were no Mercedes found in our driveway, or designer clothes being worn!  We lived very simply, owned a modest home, and both had good incomes--and we had a hard time.

Tell me the secret!  
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Page 5 of 5
428350 tn?1216419581
I have a computer nerd too! :)
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218870 tn?1240259255
I am hoping the paycheck to paycheck thing is almost over.  The people in his company have been explaining exacly how much more lucrative it is the longer they are in it.  He seems to be very happy with it so that makes it good in all aspects of our life.  He programs/makes robots for the military to help protect our troop.  What better job for a man who still thinks he's a kid!  He gets to drive tanks and fly remote controlled airplanes half of the week...they call it testing, I call it playing!
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There are many millionaires out there that made it without mommy and daddy paying for college.  I never thought it was my mothers place to foot the bill for whatever I decided to do with my life... it amazes me that there are people who think that mommy and daddy should pay for their wedding too.. I'm sorry we were not raised that way, it's enough for me that my mother gave me life.
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172023 tn?1334675884
So, those are the secrets?

Marry a computer programmer and don't pay for your childrens education!

Got it!  

*idly wonders how hubby #1 never got a huge salary from being a computer programmer.  Average salary, at best*




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127124 tn?1326739035
Peek-  perhaps he was hiding it from you!!!!!!!   j/k
Guess I should have given the hs nerd an extra look.   oh, well........  live and learn.

I still don't see how anyone can do it.  School registration is coming up.  Just to get our 2 started it's $330.00 for bookfees, 1 month of lunches and an activity pass.
Then there are the necessary supplies, bookbags, shoes and clothing.  That will easily be
$600.00.         $930.00 extra this month.   If I had 8 kids that would be $3720.00   to get
them ready for school.    
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172023 tn?1334675884
I'm passing out reading about the $930!  

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287246 tn?1318573663
I agree Baby Hardiman.  I mean if I had the money, that would be great (for the kids college).  But my SIL made a good point to me one time.  And her parents paid for her college and her 2 sisters and all 3 wedding for her and her sisters.  But she (SIL) said that even though her parents paid for her college, that she noticed when she was in college that the kids that paid for their own verses the ones that had it paid for for them by their parents, appreciated it more.  The ones that had their parents paying for college didn't worry so much about skipping/missing classes.  Whereas the ones that paid their own way, wanted to get their moneys worth.  I was really surprised about her attitude towards the subject since, as I said, her parents paid for hers.  My parents paid for my brother's 1st degree.  He went back for his 2nd degree and is paying that himself.
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172023 tn?1334675884
I paid the $50 bucks for my own wedding the second time.  But I can't say the first one cost much more than that.  

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127124 tn?1326739035
We paid for our own wedding.    
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So in other words the parents went into debt after paying for all those things for their kids... gesh!  



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162279 tn?1270604959
You asked, I told you.:)
Computer programmers can vary greatly in their salaries. I googled it, and the range can be huge. So I am just lucky to be on the high end I guess.
Quit being so cynical!:)
I love you, though. You know that! :)
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159354 tn?1286371288
I'm not sure how old your kids are....but I was just looking at the stuff my DD will need next year to start kindergarten....uggghh...

And I thought it would get easier when I didn't have to pay for all day care....it doesn't get any easier or cheaper the older they get....
I think they just get more expensive.

I guess for my DH and I, we really want to pay for our kids education.  We don't want to give them luxuries or extras....just a good solid education and family trips....I so much enjoy our family trips....just family time...no interruptions, even if it's just camping.

And of course make sure we are set in retirement so my kids don't have to worry about me.....

Having 2 - makes it difficult for even that.  

Not everyone has to agree that paying for education is priority or their obligation....it's just what WE want to do.
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159354 tn?1286371288
Wedding....that's a entirely different subject.

DH and I split the cost with my parents....but LOL...it was only like 3K.  
My best friend got married 2 years later....40K on her wedding....Her parents paid the entire thing!  

40K for a one day event?!!!
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287246 tn?1318573663
They very well may have gone into debt.  I mean I know her parents are pretty well to do, but I don't know how well to do.

As I said, I think my kids having each other through life is the best thing I could ever give them.  But we all get our opinions from our life experiences and my life experience is that I'd have given my right arm for a sister that I was able to be close to.  So, that is my hope for my kids too.  

I give my kids all that I can.  We can't afford to go on vacations but we live in a nice home, they have nice things such as clothes, toys, games, movies, etc.  We live in the home that we live in for their comfort, not mine.  We thought long and hard about whether to stay in the tiny home we lived in and have extra money for mini-vacations maybe once a year.  Or we could move into a larger home with lots more room where they could be comfortable 365 days a year.  Oh, and they have 2 parents the love them more than anything in this whole world :)

So, I don't know the answer to tell you the truth.  I just know that I love my kids with all my heart and I wouldn't change a thing where they are concerned.  I just cannot imagine my life without them.  Everything else will work itself out as we go along.  We are taking steps (my husband and I) to better our life for ourselves and so that we can help our kids in the future in some way.  Everyone needs a little bit of help along the way at some point and we want to be in a position to do that.  But that could be something as simple as co-signing on a first car or maybe helping them with a down payment, or well, it could be many things.  And we hope to be in a place to do that......
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127124 tn?1326739035
My kids are 8 and 12.   Just wait the older they get the more expensive it gets!
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167 tn?1374177417
We will pay for our own wedding also. And, I once had a great savings account. The first time I married. He left me with all the debt, I used what was left in our savings to pay off what I could, couldn't keep up and ended up having to file bankruptcy. I was a single mom, living paycheck to paycheck.

Just when things were getting really good...Ben and I saved, bought a house, had a baby and lost the child support that allowed us to support the girls and live comfortably and save. So, it was back to living paycheck to paycheck again and thank GOD we just started getting child support again. We were making it, but now, with the $1200 a month I get in support we will be able to save again. BUT, I'm sorry...I do not believe in this day and age that it is realistic for parents to foot the bill for their children's education. If you can do it, great. No harm done. It might give the kids a headstart in life. BUT, I have seen it over and over again...mommy and daddy pay for school, kids don't appreciate it and drop out or don't do well and quit. THEN, they go back on their own terms and have to pay for it so take it much more seriously. That's my story and it's my belief. I will not be paying for my children's education. My first two daughters are honor students-they should be getting great scholarships. I will help them when I can, but I am not footing the bill. Call me cheap, mean, shouldn't have had this many kids, not financially ready for them, etc, etc...so be it. Also, I will not be footing the bill for their weddings. I'm thinking at most, I will help pay for receptions up to a certain amount and that's it. Or, maybe giving them each a certain amount and that's what they get. The rest comes out of their pockets.
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176741 tn?1295237589
My DH is in the military and I am a teacher, neither of which are known for high-paying salaries.  However, my DH's job provides our housing money, free medical insurance, low-cost dental, low-cost life-insurance, provides some food money and the GI bill he paid a pittance into is going to finance my master's degree in education administration when I begin it next year.

I just got a new job and the medical insurance options they offered me for my family cost between $650-900 per month, in addition to co-pays and deductibles!  Thank goodness I have other insurance.

I paid for most of my college education (mom paid for $2000 plus some spending money here and there).  I paid on those loans for 10 long years!  My DH is not keen on paying for college for our 2 children.  He saw me pay my own way and got the GI bill for himself (though he no longer plans to use it as he will be going in to police work after military retirement).  We have saved money for them...I'm sure we'll help them out.  Not sure about the weddings...my DH and I peeled mounds of potatos the day before our wedding for our guest's mashed potatos...I don't know that he'll want our kids to do the same :)
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172826 tn?1423426556
i always wondered as well...my ex JUST got a job in his field.. he is done his college and is a network administrator...his starting salary right now for the first job in his field is 18$ an hour..which here right now...compared to minimum wage 8$ AND call centres(which is considered a good job where im at) is 10$...anyways I have a friend who is a network admin as well and he was working at the hospital here making 250K a year...he is 24, single, owns a house, a car, a truck and then some.. he is now working out by where he is from making almost double...We've always been friends and yup they make a good chunk of money...but does money always bring happiness?? yes and no...as someone stated the more money you have the more you spend...

I am putting money away for Cameron's post secondary education...BUT he will know of nothing until he is done his school and has graduated...then i will give him the money...Once i am done college I will be 31K in debt...that's my only thing.. and for 4 years...and it would have been more BUT due to all the scholarships I've received I saved alot...i mean ALOT...

My parents didnt pay for my school but they are planning on helping me afterwards...my dad told me one day i would never do anything with my life and i have prooved him wrong.. i went from going to school working etc now having a baby going back to school(which ALOT here dont do) i refuse to be sitting here not doing anything and not being able to provide for my baby the way I want to...he deserves better.. and besides what kind of role model would i be for him, being that i'm the only role model for him right now...

My dad never believed in paying for my school...he was put in foster care at 13 when his mom died..and he worked his arse off and now today has alot to show for himself..i am proud of him as he is of me and i dont agree that a parent SHOULD pay for their childrens school...it's okay to help, which i will do once my child or children(if i ever have more) go to post secondary institutions..i have seen what all these kids out there in college do when mommy and daddy pay for their education...I can honestly say that drinking, partying, not studying but cheating on exams and tests were a daily activity...Let me tell you i showed up to all my classes, worked my butt off and didnt party on school nites, did all my homework and i am proud of myself.. i have a 3.8 for my whole 3 years of college which i think is pretty good...so i think people who think they have to pay themselves take things more seriously...but thats my opinion:)
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172023 tn?1334675884
Ok...do you think I goofed off in school?  I appreciated the chance to go, and certainly appreciated what it took to offer my sister and myself that chance to get an education.

I'm so very grateful to them for doing that for me.  Its the greatest gift they could have given me.  

I'm always interested to hear how everyone thinks and plans.  If you never ask, you never find out.  
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172826 tn?1423426556
oh girl i didnt mean to be pointing anything at you or anyone else.. i'm just saying how I saw it at school during my 3 years there...and it's sad.. you do not find very many that won't goof off in school while on their parents dimes...

I was never a bad kid so i took my school seriously but if my parents would have paid everything, i don't think i would have learned the value of a dollar...but i sure did when i moved out on my own when i was 18 and out of town...lol...we learn i suppose huh? Live and learn...and being 22 I know i have alot more to do as do many other.. we never know everything according to our age.. we learn..regardless what everyone tries to tell us...
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my kids will have schooling paid for because of dad(s) serving in war.  we dont have much debt and we dont live paycheck to paycheck because dh works a second job.  ive wondered how some do it with many kids but i guess hand me downs and such help out in a big way.  i have been learning how to be a smarter shopper so i dont buy things we dont need, well most of the time lol.  i see people who work a job in a fast food rest and they have several kids and acrylic nails and coach purses and i wonder how do they do it?  i worked with a girl like that, her and her boyfriend (both in their mid 20's) lived with his or her parents.  no rent, money to burn, wtf??? doesnt anyone have pride?  anyway id love to be able to afford more than 2 or 3, but when i have to start paying for braces, a car (yes to get them to school when they grad) you just cant afford that!  i hope dh finds a good paying job after he retires, kinda nervous about that.
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171768 tn?1324233699
i am one of five. we were provided with the very basics, but everything we needed. it never really bothered me that i didn't have a TV in my room like my friends. i started to work at 12 in the family restaurant, and have been working since. the family didn't have the restaurant when my youngest brother was old enough to work, so he went out at 15 and got a job on his own cleaning up in a butcher shop.

My mom busted her butt to give us everything we needed. We earned money for the rest. I was able to go to Europe 3 times during high school with my own money. the work ethic i got from these experiences were invaluable. i didn't get into much trouble as a teen because while my friends were partying, i was working. i definitely took things more seriously because i had to pay for everything.

as i mentioned earlier, we had a big family but it was at the expense of my mother's future and retirement. i love having so many siblings. DH is 1 of 3. We would like 3 or 4. But I cannot do it at the expense of our future financial stability.

Although today is giving me a different perspective. My mom is a mess because one of her best friends will most likely die today. Yesterday they told her she had 2 years to live. Just a few weeks ago she threw her daughter a fancy Sweet 16 party. these parties have me scratching my head in general... sooo much money being spent. they're like mini-weddings! i bet there's no regrets on money spent there....

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184674 tn?1360864093
My mom paid for half my college education, and the half I paid is now a $14K student loan. Oh man, I'll tell you what, I didn't DARE do things to goof off in school on my mom's dime or else she'd kill me! My mom is the type of person that will lovingly and wholeheartedly offer financial help, under the condition that it's appreciated to the fullest extent. If not, the money would've been yanked out from under faster than a rug and she'd have been like, "I love you, but you're on your own if you don't appreciate my help. Happy livin'."
I love my mom. I credit my strength in handling things to the way she raised me and the values she instilled in me.
I plan to do the same with Trevor. I'll help him along financially here and there, but for the most part, I want him to know that providing for yourself is just as important as knowing how to appreciate what's given to you.
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167 tn?1374177417
Coach purse? LOL...Man...we don't do anything name brand, I've never had my nails done and RARELY get my hair done other than a trim twice a year. I cut my own girls hair, we do hand me downs and thrift shops when we can and they still have cute stuff. Coach purse? Forget it! I would never and have never been interested in that type of "show". We do fun things occasionally and don't feel deprived.

I hate when you see the welfare people with those coach purses, fancy hair, name brand clothes, fancy cars and nice nails. Makes me irate!!
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172023 tn?1334675884
I was really wondering how people with very large families made ends meet.   Not so much as to whether parents should help pay for college or not--guess I learned a couple things on that one :(  
*takes a moment to silently apologize to Mom and Dad for wasting their money*

I originally wondered how people with very large families budgeted for emergencies, their kids futures, etc.  How they manage to do all that and still save for their retirement?  

See what happens when you have so little to do with your life that you ask pointless questions??  LOL!


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171768 tn?1324233699
Well, so far we've learned that you need to marry well or it doesn't happen!

anyone have a different experience??
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162279 tn?1270604959
But when I TOLD you how I do it, you acted like it wasn't possible still. Or at least that's the way it came across when you said that comment about your first husband who was a computer programmer too, and made only average salary.

I think it turned into a good discussion though!! :) Its interesting to see what people think about the college thing. And weddings---I never knew anyone thought that parents shouldnt pay for weddings. I thought that was a given for parents.

Anyway, i think it is a great thread!!
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My parents raised 9 kids, and did a WONDERFUL job!

After the youngest started kindergarten, my mother went to work (nights, so there was a parent home at all times.) It was my mother's income that made it possible for them to save and have a family vacation once a year. How my mother did, I will never know! ( If it were me, I probably would have ended up in the nut house!)

They instilled in us, at a very early age, how important a good education was. Homework, and any kind of school work was ALWAYS a prioity. They felt that chores were always going to be there, so they took a backseat.

Thankfully we were all above average in school, and excelled, which in turn, enabled us to get schoarships, grants, etc. On the average, I would say that my parents ended up paying for half of our education and the other half was paid on our own merit do due to our good grades.

I might add that, that was for 7 kids, not 9. One brother passed away right out of high school and my younger sister didn't want to have anything to do with going to college. (She was the black sheep of the family, there's alway's one!)

As for my two kids, my husband and I paid for their college education. My son did get a $5000 yearly scholarship for 4 years, so that did help.  We were so happy that my daughter wanted to go to cosmetology school. (Still expensive, but nowhere near what we paid for my son.)
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172023 tn?1334675884
Which leads me to another quite pointless observation:

I love my sister.   But she was a beotch growing up with.  I'm not sure I'd wouldn't have liked being an only child.

And I'm so very, very, very glad there were no more Peekasiblings.  The world is a better place..trust me.  
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172023 tn?1334675884
Jenny, I was just saying that not all computer programmers make tons of money.  Mine didn't.
Thankfully, he's someone elses nerd now!  

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127124 tn?1326739035
You really didn't tell us anything except you married a computer nerd.  
Peek was asking how you provide food and clothing plus have the money for
extras.    Do you use thrift stores, coupons, what?????????
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well unfortunatly we dont save for retirement other than the non existant ss that we will continue to dream of collecting lol and what he makes from the navy and then what job he requires next.  not a good plan.  i agree that the retirement should be a big priority.  what will food cost then?  i cant answer from a big family standpoint, but i do know a few families that seem to have money appear from nowhere.  i dont ask how they do it but i wonder how when they have 6 kids and make less than we do.  

i love my sister,  but i cant imagine having more siblings.  we were able to do so much growing up because my dad was the BEST at saving money.  cutting corners, using coupons at the grocery *i remember mom having her list from this store for their specials and the other for theirs.  we didnt have much in the way of name brand, but we never did without and my dad didnt make high dollars.  

i watched jon & kate plus 100000 lol and they have a grocery bill of about $150 a week, maybe less.  and they buy healthy foods! that is hard to do, i can see if you buy raman noodles and junk.  that family the duggers, like 18 of them now, have a grocery bill of $1000 a week.  but they make their clothes, homeschool, live a very conservative live.  dad was in real estate and i thought in politics.  

i think it would be so much fun to have a big family, we never had much that lived near us growing up.  but i dont think id want to sacrafice my kids needs now for a rat pack in the future unless dh or i could make enough money it werent an issue.  
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159354 tn?1286371288
Obviously it all comes down to some people finances and budgets are not other peoples priorities.

For my family....every month there is a budget.  We do not go over.

We know the income coming in and that is that.

School, savings, retirement....it's all spent before we get it.  Do we have that month or two emergency fund....yes.  but that's about it....a month or two.

Working at the financial firm I do....most advise to have 6 mos of debt in savings....I don't know many people who can say they have 6 mos of their monthly bills in savings....

The reality is I guess, we all have different priorities and budgets our families live by.

I'm still trying to figure out what is the most important for me.

Paying full tuition for the 2 children I have (and my DDs wedding) As well as a HS graduation gift (used car for College) or lovingly give them more siblings......

Seems a silly question I guess...but that's where I am in today's world.

Now - I'm going off to be with those 2 wonderful kids for the weekend....

Cheers!
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172023 tn?1334675884
My sister once tried to flush my head down the toilet.  True story.

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159354 tn?1286371288
I try and cut corners now.

I buy my kids clothes in the 'off season'....when they are doing close outs on summer clothes...like now, I'll buy for next year....but I did that for DD...and she grew so fast this past winter...nothing fit....so I'll be rethinking that idea...

I cut coupons, I use all kinds of discount stuff....but still...we are budgeted to 'our' families needs...

And every family has different needs and wants and priorities I guess.

....OK - signing off now.

Love You ladies....Have a great weekend.
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lol peek that *****.  dont all siblings do that to each other?  my sis and i have had knock down drag out boxing matches but we love each other.  we talk to each other almost every single day.  peek i have come to the conclusion too that there are some places to live that are so much less $$$ than our beautiful california that maybe more kids are equivalent to our taxes haha.
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189192 tn?1261345228
Aside from my TSP (similar to 401K), I have money deducted automatically into a mutual fund.  I also have a small house (1000 sqft) that I bought when I very first graduated from college.  I lived in it for 4 years.  When I bought my new house, instead of selling the old one, I rent it out.  The mortgage on it is for 15yrs.  When Jacob is older, i will either use the rent money to help fund his college expenses or sell it and use those funds.  
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having a budget is def #1......no matter HOW much money you make or how many kids you have. I've known people who make lots of $$$ but they are house and car poor...live beyond their means.
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162279 tn?1270604959
My answer IS that I married a man that makes enough money to provide for this large of a family...that is how I provide. I don't do anything special like shopping only bargain stores or thrift stores. I do use some coupons when I come across one for something I buy anyway. And I definitely shop in bulk at Sam's club.
But I guess my answer is, simply, we CAN afford to feed, clothe and provide for this many children. I wouldn't have them if I couldn't provide for their needs.I think its very important to provide well for children, not just have them.
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172023 tn?1334675884
Cool.

Thanks, ya'll.  
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213739 tn?1215489609
We have two with #3 on the way and I too worry about it but we only buy things we can afford.  We only use the credit card if it's something we want to have record of and then pay it off right away.  I go to a lot of garage sales and use Craigslist a TON.  I have gotten everything we need for the baby on Craigslist for such minimal prices.  We don't drive the big SUV's and we do put money away for the kids college- probably not enough- and my hubby has a great pension as he is a fireman through the city.  Our decision to have a third was for a complete different reason than most as our son has special needs and we felt that when we were old (and then gone) we didn't want the burden to fall solely on our daughter.  Of course, I'm very happy to be having a third as I LOVE kids and my teachers in high school used to joke that I'd be the one that came back to the 20 year reunion married with a dozen!  But, with the economy and cost of everything, we had agreed on two.  Our little guy has been such a joy and we feel that he and our daughter deserve another sibling for so many reasons.  I really think living within your means is huge.  I see so many people in our neighborhood going into foreclosure, etc.  We live modestly.  I agree with Peek that it's cheaper to have the bundle package of cable, internet, etc. and that's what we have but no extra channels like HBO, etc.  I make a meal plan for the week, go to the grocery store and buy only what's on my list.  I try to go without kids as that always seems to cost more!! LOL!  I don't know how those with 8 do it and I'm sure they don't pay for their kids college.  Both my hubby and I's parents paid in full for ours and my parents even paid for my Master's Degree however, our goal is to do the best we can and give them what we can.  I'd love to have more but know that this will be IT.
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171768 tn?1324233699
i clip coupons- tons of them. i love clipping coupons. it's been years since i actually used one. for the life of me, i cannot remember to bring them. if i remember to bring them, i always forget to use them.

to the passer-by it would look like i spend a fortune on dd. my backyard is covered with fun things- a slide, a step 2 sand and water table, a little tykes house, a cozy coupe, kiddie lawn mower... i didn't spend a dime on any of it. if you guys don't use freecycle.org, you HAVE to.
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150937 tn?1235947480
omg...what an amazing website...thanks for the tip!!!!  my little itty bitty rural community I live in is even on it....who would've thought!!!  I am going to pass this website on for sure!!!
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171768 tn?1324233699
oh... it's wonderful. helped us furnish our first apartment. then, as we got our own stuff and gifts, we used it to get rid of a lot of stuff. the whole idea is to keep stuff out of landfills. so far, i have found everyone to be honest about the condition of things. i've gotten rid of tree trunk segments, glass block, everything.

i usually don't ask for stuff- just watch for posts. when i had dd 4 weeks early- before my shower, i posted my predicament and generous people gave me bouncy seats, tubs, etc... then, when i had my shower and got my own stuff, i passed it on.
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150937 tn?1235947480
what a great idea!  thanks again
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173939 tn?1333221450
The toy and gadget recycling saves a lot of money indeed. Still I have to say it is a struggle to get by with even just one child and one income only. Maybe it depends on the area each one of us is living in. It must make a huge difference if you live in rural Kentucky or star-struck Orange County for example. At least most of my earnings go into mortgage payments. I always imagined that large families would live old-school and run one bath water for all kids, cook one type meal for the whole week, live the simple life with few toys but lots of imagination and not let all of their kids go to college...But I see that there are as many variations as there are families. Duh, I knew I should have stuck with that IT guy.....
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176741 tn?1295237589
In college I had a guy interested in me...his dad was a 3M exec...he called me from the 3M plane (an exec perk I guess) to confirm our first (and, alas, our last) date.  Crazy little thing called "love"...I just wasn't feeling it.  Oh well.
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173939 tn?1333221450
And then came your husband-to-be like 3M super-glue :)))
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I went to school w/ a girl who had 11 siblings (at that time) - their parents didnt believe in contraception.  They brought cheap meals to school such as cheese sandwiches and made their own clothes and the youngest 9 kids were home-schooled.  I visited their house once and only then did I realize the true reality of their financially situation.  Their house was a complete sty...... several doors and windows missing, holes in the walls, one of the bathrooms was not working etc. etc.  Of course they didnt have any luxuries including a TV.   In this case, the parents watered and feed their children, clothed them, provided medical care (essentially free in NZ where I am from), schooled them and provided a roof over their heads but at what cost?  They essentially lived in squalor.  
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484465 tn?1347117312
amazed at this large family business myself.  my sis-in-law just had baby #4 and has the nerve to be calling MY husband every other day ( I suspect to ask for money and assistance)  i told him the other day that helping her is out of the question and that i would leave him if he ever started.  we cant help a family of 6!  she's married just like me and she and her husband need to find a way to make that stuff work!  i don't even want to know how, just wishing them some luck
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