Thrifting for Baby!

When my son was born I will be honest, I didn’t really think too much about the cost of items because we had so many generous family and friends who bought us just about everything we needed.  As my son grew older however I started to realize how crazy expensive kids are. Now that I am pregnant (almost 9 months) with baby #2 and little man will be starting pre-school in a few months, I am determined to save as much money as I can.

I am actually pretty addicted to thrifting. I mostly blame my mom because she used to drag me on trips to Goodwill so often. I hated it. Of course I would become my mothers daughter and I now drag my son there, although he loves it and thinks we can buy everything from the thrift store.

I’ve compiled a list of how to thrift and get the best deals on your baby gear! The great thing about thrifting for kids is that you can thrift just about anything. Toys, books, baby gear, clothing, furniture; but there are also things that you should never thrift for.

Before Thrifting:
1.  Make a list of ALL the things you want to buy or need for baby
2.  Do your research on all those items
3.  Know the cost when bought brand new
4.  Check to see if the on sale price is comparable or better than second hand
5.  Check to see that the items meets the safety standards
6.  Check to see if item has been recalled

Where to thrift:
1. Craigslist or similar listing sites
Specific and takes a lot of time
2. Thrift Stores – local (churches, organizations)
Hit or miss with variety or selection
3. Thrift Stores – Chain (Goodwill, Savers, Value Village, Etc.)
Better Selection and variety
4. Garage Sales/ Yard Sales
Hit or miss with variety or selection, time waster
5. Specialty Consignment Stores for Kids
Large selection and hand bought to quality is decent to excellent

Never Thrift For:
-Cribs
Too much liability, better to be safe than sorry
-Stuffed Animals
Notorious for being the home to dust mites and bed bugs and are ridiculously hard to clean
-Car Seats
Along the same lines as cribs, once a car seat has been in a car accident its’ safety has been compromised and you don’t know what the previous owner has put that seat through. They also go through a pretty quick safety standard update and every year there is a newer model that has been updated to be safer. Be safe not sorry.
-Bath Toys
Bath toys can have hidden mold and mold is disgusting.

Use Caution when Thrifting for:
-Pack and Plays
-Bassinets
-Baby Bath Tubs
These things are hard to sanitize and clean, although it can be done, it is a pain. Bath tubs also get deep scratches where mold and mildew live and it can be hard to get those things completely clean.

General Rules when thrifting for items:
-Ask yourself if it can be CLEANED, WASHED, and/or SANITIZED?
If the answer is no, do not buy the item obviously.
-Make sure there are no missing parts or pieces, no broken parts or pieces, no chips, and if it has batteries check the battery compartment to see if there is corrosion.

Definitely Thrift for:
-Toys
Make sure there are no broken or missing parts and pieces and that sounds and lights work with batteries. Plastic toys are best but don’t avoid wooden toys, they can be cleaned! Just make sure the paint is not peeling and there is no chips in the wood.
-Books
No missing pages, board books are the best to thrift because they are easy to clean!
-Gear: Strollers, Bouncers, Jumpers, Baby Carriers
No broken or missing parts or pieces, can the fabric be washed/cleaned, no stains rips or tears, and for strollers check the brakes and make sure the ride is smooth.
-Nursing Covers/ Car Seat Canopies
No stains, rips, or tears
-Receiving Blankets
No stains, rips or tears
-Clothing (especially dressy clothes)
No stains, rips, tears, or that the item is not overly stretched out if it has elastic. Especially thrift for dressy items that kids hardly use and newborn clothing.  More often than not, those items will be brand new and gently used when they show up at the thrift store.

After you thrift:
-wash your hands, use some hand sanitizer
-take a black garbage bag and put your items in the bag and in your trunk
-clean, wash, and santize your items ASAP. I will be the first to admit that germs will probably be on the item.
-if you can’t get to the item right away, leave it in a black garbage bag and in the garage until you can clean it properly.

Here is the link to check for safety recalls and alerts:

http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/

If you would like to see how I clean, wash, and sanitize my thrifted items, make sure to like, comment, follow and subscribe! I hope this video and post helps you to save just a little bit of money!

Check out the video below for other tips on thrifting for baby!

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The Great Shopping Conundrum

For the last few months of the year, I feel like I am always shopping. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, multiple birthdays, etc. It just keeps on going.  I will say that I actually ENJOY buying presents for other people. It’s so much fun, sometimes I take it WAY over the top and end up making a gift basket because I couldn’t decide on just one present.  Then there are other times when I just keep putting it off and putting it off until it’s the last minute…you know like a good procrastinator.  Take for instance today. I asked my husband to take my son to run some errands so I could go shopping for my mother-in-law’s, my niece’s and my son’s birthdays. (One belated-late and two-early)

First of all, I completely forgot that it was a holiday. Not just a holiday but a STATE and FEDERAL holiday meaning no school and no work for about 75% of the island. Guess what? Everyone had the same idea today.  Normally when I’m with my son, I’m only about to hit up maybe 2 stores, 3 MAX. If I’m alone on a weekday while everyone is working, I can get to about 6-8 stores. Today, I made it to 2…I should have just taken my son shopping with me! Traffic was crazy, parking was crazy, and guess what? I didn’t buy anyone presents because I was so stressed out about parking my stinking car! When I finally did get into the store, all I could think about was I NEED to buy something to make this dang trip worth it! I KNOW, I shouldn’t have done it but I did. I will admit that I did get some pretty good deals though! (Nordstrom Rack is having their clear the racks sale with an additional 25% off red tags…just saying…you know, in case you want to go shopping for gifts…for yourself.)

I hope I’m not the only one that does this but I was in the dressing room and I was thinking to myself: “Why is it that when I have money and want to go shopping for myself, I never see anything that I want or like? Why is it that when I’m broke and go “window shopping” I see a plethora of items I’d like to own? ALSO, Why is it that when I need to go shopping for someone else I end up walking away empty handed BUT, I saw a ton of things that I would like?  I went shopping for my family, and here I am leaving with some jeans and boots that I don’t really need! UGH.” Does anyone know the answers to these questions? I KNOW you don’t, It’s the shopping conundrum I tell you!

Online shopping for clothing can be a joke too. If you’re anything like me, you hate going to the mall to go shopping. On the other hand, you would rather go shopping because you can try before you buy. If you buy online, odds are HIGH that the dress that looked cute on that cute, tall, and skinny girl, will make you look like Grumpy from the Seven Dwarves.  How do I know, because it’s happened. It get’s better though because although it’s free returns, you’ve ripped the package to shreds, and have no box to put it in.  OR, you have the package but you let it sit, on your desk, for nearly half a century before you remember you need to send it back. By which time, it’s too late to send it back to you resort to selling it on Poshmark to only get maybe a 1/4 of what you paid! Double UGH! The shopping conundrum!!!!!!!

Well in any case, if you decide to go shopping this week, stop by Ala Moana for their Grand Opening of The Ewa Wing and also stop by Nordstrom Rack and get 25% of all red tag items…The Ward Village location has got a TON of stuff that I would just love to buy, but I’m on shopping restriction since the holidays are coming and we are leaving for Disneyland in about 3 1/2 weeks. I’ll be showing you my cute finds in an upcoming post so stay tuned!

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Dressing My Bump: What Di Pilipino Ladee Tell Me

I missed this weeks dressing my bump for obvious reasons.  I was in Cali, and well I was enjoying my short little vacay with mi familia.  After one of my shopping extravaganzas, I deicided to wait inside of Saks Off 5th instead of standing in the heat.  While waiting di pilipino laydee greeting people by the door tell me dat I look soooo cute pregnant (why thank you aunty).  Then she goes on to say: “You know what you habing?” I tell her yes, and she tells me, “Oh! your husband must be so happppy!” (I didn’t correct her, she seemed old school, and well I’m getting married eventually, and after 7 years he’s practically my husband anyway) She goes on to ask: “How par along are you?” I tell her 5 months, she responds wit “Ai! You so small yet! hoppully you no get bigger one time!”  I just smile and nod, she adds: “You know…people say dat when you hab a ____ you get ugly, but you no ugly, you so preety, I guess dey wrong den ya?”  That might have been the highlight of my trip.

It’s still getting harder and harder to find clothes to wear and it’s getting harder to wear a bra too.  They’re just growing at an enormous rate and I can’t keep up, so I’ve just been using sports bra’s and cami bra’s.  They’re a lot more comfy than underwires anyway. I’m managing!  I’m so glad I made the trip to San Jose because I got to visit one of my absolutely FABORITE stores ever, H&M.  Did you know they have a maternity section?!  It’s not huge, actually pretty small, but it’s definitely affordable, and very cute stuff.  I got some cute mint green jeans, a cream lace tunic, and some awesome overbelly tights.  None of what I am wearing in these pictures are from H&M by the way.

Baby is starting to move more and more, and it’s getting stronger and stronger with every karate chop it makes.  (Hey ma! do you need to use the bathroom? Hi YA!)  I’m getting more excited as the days go by and I can’t wait to meet my itty bitty one, I think we may have settled on a name too.  I hate to say it but, my fiance is good name picker, I usually get out voted and I should have known he would have picked something I’d like.

Sweater: The Wedding Cafe    Top: Pac Sun   Cami: Gap   Bermuda Shorts: Macy’s   Shoes: Jean’s Wearhouse

22 Weeks

Hola from San Jose Califor-ni-A!

Hola amigos!
Once again excuse my absence. I know you’ve been dying to know what I’ve been up to. Here’s the dealio.
I am currently in San Jose, mainly to visit family, really just to get my H&M, Olive Garden, and In-and-Out Burger fix. I stepped on a plane for the first time yesterday and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I still got constipated though. Gross, I know TMI. I think baby might not like flying, it moved a lot on take off and landing, then again I could totally be making that up. I make the journey home on Thursday, we’ll see how that goes.
Good news: I did a lot of shopping for baby, since who know when I’ll be able to fly here again.
Bad news: I also did a lot of unnecessary shopping for me. That equals me being broke.

21 weeks 3 days