Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Baby on a Budget Series Introduction

Our baby girl is only three weeks old and she has already been an immense blessing to my husband and I and to our marriage.  Yet there was a very real possibility that she would have never been born because we entered our marriage deadset against having children until my husband graduated (which won't happen until this upcoming May).  You can read more about our change of heart here

The main reason we felt that we needed to wait to have children was because of the financial "burden" of children.  Once we realized that we were called to be parents now rather than later, we becan to see that would could in fact support a baby on my husband's measly grad student stipend.  Is it easy? No.  But it certainly is worth it. 

I believe that part of being open to life is accepting children even in "non-ideal" situations.  In our modern society, being financially stable, owning your own home, having a well-paying career, etc. are generally considered necessities before a couple would seek pregnancy.  Yet couples (including us) welcome children without having all (or any) of these and are still able to raise their children in loving households with the true necessities (food, clothing, shelter, love). 

So in order to support other married couples in being open to life, I'm going to be writing a series of posts on having a baby in a small budget.  I will give some of the tips and tricks that my husband and I use to support our family of three on his small stipend.  Of course, every couple must decide for themselves if starting (or further expanding) their family is financially feasible, but I do want to provide support, ideas, and my own personal experience to help them make their decisions.  It would have made the decision-making process easier for us if we knew of others that were able to do it, were able to ask questions, and seek advice. 

Some potential topics I'm planning to address:

What do babies really need?
Baby gifts -  how to ask for what you really need
Buying second hand
Cloth diapers (and wipes)
Buying baby items with money/gift cards earned online
Using coupons

I know there are many other men and women out there that decided to have children and are raising them on a small budget, so if you have any advice or would like to share your personal experience, I'd love to have you write a guest post.  Email me at

Please check out the other posts (including some great guest posts) in my Baby on a Budget series


  1. Wow, this sounds like an awesome series! God bless you all :)

  2. SO EXCITED! This is a huge topic of conversation for us right now, so I can't wait to get some ideas!!!

  3. This is such a big topic these days! I don't have kids but still will be interested in hearing your thoughts :)

  4. Can't wait to read this and bookmark it for the hopefully somewhat near future! :)

  5. Yes! Please! I will read every single part of this upcoming series. My husband and I have been married almost four years and I have just discontinued taking birth control (in August 2011) upon learning so much about it that I never knew. I also started the process of joining the Catholic Church. I want to start a family, but the financial strain and lack of a home/apt with at least two bedrooms is scary. Advice appreciated!

  6. Mandi- I recently started following your blog (congrats on the baby!) and I am SO excited about this series. My husband and I celebrated our first anniversary this month and are expecting a baby in February! So that I can stay home to raise our child(ren), we're down to one income--that of a high school teacher. It's probably not as tight as a grad student, but it won't be easy! I am excited to read your series!


  7. As hard as it seems no one is Ever ready financially for children,it's all a matter of making things work :) My husband owns his own business and that can be just as hard.When we first started my teacher's salary was the main income and when I left teaching it was so hard to let go. We just have to have Faith in God and let him take care of us. I live by this bible verse and I know it is what calms me down when things get a little hairy."Behold the birds of the air, for they neither sow, nor do they reap, nor gather into barns: and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not you of much more value than they? Matthe 6:26

  8. This sounds like a really great series! I actually teach a Budgeting for Baby class to military families (even though I won't be a mom for about another month), and we address these topics in the class. If I think of something else that we cover to perhaps guest post about, I'll shoot you an email. Or maybe you have something in mind that you'd like another perspective on?

  9. Sounds awesome :-)

    Perhaps I'll have to scheme up something to write because we are soooooo in that boat.

  10. I love the idea of this series. My fiancé and I will be married in about 5 months, and hope God eventually blesses us with children, likely much sooner than others would expect. However, we also would have limited financial means.

    Blessings to you and your family, especially during this Christmas season.

  11. So excited for this series! As you know, we are in a similar boat to you. I can't wait to see what I can learn since our baby is due in May.

  12. This is a fantastic idea for a series! I love the concept of being open to life even when everything isn't "settled and perfect" instead of having a checklist of all the things you MUST have before even thinking about conceiving.

  13. I started grad school with two kids, little money, 750sqft 3br apartment, no car, and finished with five kids in the same apartment plus a minivan. We were happy, and even saved some money in the process (I had multiple other jobs at the time, tutoring, etc.; my wife was fully occupied with the children, as you might imagine). A friend was in a similar boat, but had even more children. In fact, almost all the other grad student families in our apartment complex had children (I can think of two such families of six children). It can be done as long as you embrace the virtue of simplicity...


I'd love to hear what you have to say! You can also contact me directly by emailing me at