Having a baby turns your life upside down in so many ways! As well as being a huge change emotionally, it can also change your life practically, especially if your financial circumstances have changed due to maternity leave, switching to part time hours, or by choosing to spend time at home with children.
We've always been careful with our money. Before having children most of our money was spent on getting our home sorted - buying furniture and other essential bits -as well as decorating. Our spare money went mainly on travelling, we took several holidays a year along with lots of day trips. We also bought lots of odd bits and pieces, for example I love reading and I was always buying books, we bought DVDs, we purchased our clothes on the high street as we needed them and we also went out a lot more in the evenings spending money on food and drink.
Since having children our priorities have changed a little. We still make sure that we have room in the budget for our holidays, but the amount of extras that we buy has definitely had to reduce, especially since I was made redundant a couple of years ago.
Fortunately the children have not yet reached the age where they are requesting expensive presents, and they are quite happy with the budget friendly clothes that I buy for them. We do seem to buy them a lot of toys, although we try to save them for Christmas and birthday and we always shop around for the best deals, as well as buying things on special offer when we see them.
When it comes to myself, I hardly ever buy books now. I borrow from the library or friends, and I look for free and cheap downloads for my Kindle. Most of my clothes come from the supermarkets and are usually bought in the sales, or if I need a particular item of clothing because the old one has holes in.
If we had more money in the budget I probably wouldn't want to spend it on actual things, as I try to keep our possessions from getting out of control. Instead I'd love to have a bit of extra money to spend on a gardener and a cleaner! Neither of us are particularly good at or keen on gardening, and it would be great to have someone come around once a month or so to cut the grass, tidy up the hedges and keep the weeds from taking over the borders.
It would also be amazing to have a cleaner, as although I like to think that I'm pretty good at tidying (I certainly seem to spend most of my time at home picking things up and putting them away) when it comes to cleaning skirting boards and removing cobwebs I'm a little more sporadic!
What do you wish you had more money in the budget for? You can find a great article here with some budgeting techniques for parents.
This is a sponsored post in association with Legal and General.