Sunday, August 29, 2010


For the most part, being a low cash mama and unable to afford the extras is not a big deal. I do not like to shop at all, I abhore having to find clothing or household items. I do not find it fun in any way, and clothing rarely fits me- but really, does clothing fit anyone?! My short friends complain things are too long, my heavy friends say clothes are for skinny people, my thin friends think clothes are too baggy, and as a tall person I can attest to sleeves and hems of shirts and pants being made for the "average" American woman (5'4") much more than someone like me who exceeds that by 9 inches.
Anyway, I don't miss leisure shopping. There are, however, a few exceptions. I've been cloth diapering for almost a year now so I am well versed in what works, my CD washing routine, how to spot a potential CD problem (staining, stinking, repelling), I know how many to pack when we go out and have even vacationend with our cloth. I have no regrets about using them and am SO glad we invested in cloth as we've saved a ton of money, time, and kept a bunch of nasty junk out of landfills.
But my cloth diaper stash is pretty boring. It is almost all Bum Genius, almost all gently (or not so gently!) used, and all of the same color palate. The diapers are workhorses, we don't need anything else.
Sometimes I just crave some variety! I see online photos of babies in adorable diapers with stars, moons, sports logos, stripes, monkeys, and polka dots. I wish for oranges, purples, blacks, and for prints. Bum Genius does not offer such things. I cannot afford to branch out. So I covet diapers I see online. And I enter contests. I just sent about 7 entries off to this one: Home Grown Families!!
I want some color!! How much would I love to put my little colorful boy into the cute Orange Sherbet diaper?!
Hey, a girl can dream, even if it is about diapers.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Thrifty is Green

Fortunately for a low cash family, many things that are less expensive are also environmentally friendly and sustainable. Eating less meat, for example, is healthier, less expensive, and better for the earth. Breastfeeding is healthier and less expensive, and generates less waste so it is also better for the earth. Making your own toys or using hand-me-down baby items is another thrifty, "green" way to go.
Using a smaller vehicle with higher gas efficiency, again healthier, less expensive, better for the earth. Equally important is maintaining that vehicle. It is less expensive and less wasteful in the long run to get regular oil changes, air filter replacement, and keeping tires filled than it is to have to replace tires and major engine parts. Cookies and Clogs blog has a giveaway running right now to get FREE oil changes, check it out here.
In our family, we use one vehicle with almost 100K miles on it. The car is small and reliable, and it had better hold out until the disseratation is complete because our job prospects are not  going to change until that happens!!!
For that reason, I want to win oil changes. The odds are not with me, but it can't hurt to enter!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Healthy Happy Birthday!!!

My little Frog turns 1 next week. He goes to a small home daycare near our home and the daycare provider plans to throw him a joint birthday party with another little girl who is a week older than he is. This is great, so kind of her but the problem is that our boy has never had cake. He's never had refined sugar or any processed food besides a small amount of cheese in his short life. Low Cash Papa and I really wanted his first taste of cake to come in our presence, preferably at the Frog's first birthday party. Our options are to ask the daycare lady to please refrain from giving him sweets, to give him cake in advance of the party so we could see his reaction in person, to send a healthy "cake" treat with him on his daycare birthday day, or to just let him eat cake at daycare.
My choice is to make a healthy option for him and send it with him for the celebration! So tonight I am at work perfecting a tasty and healthy baked treat for him. I found a recipe online and am tweaking it a bit. Tomorrow I'll taste test the finished product and see if it is birthday party worthy.
Here is my recipe so far:

Banana Carrot Cake
2/3 c. banana, mashed
1/2 c. grated carrot1/2 c. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract3 lg. eggs
3/4 c. water
2 c.  flour (I use 1/3 whole wheat and 2/3 white flour)2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon

Cream together banana, butter, and vanilla, then add carrot. Whisk eggs together until very foamy. Mix water into banana mixture, add beaten eggs. Add other ingredients. Bake in 9x13 pan for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

Tomorrow the finished product will be photographed and sampled, and the verdict will be in!! Will it be good enough for my boy????

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sell me on a memory book!

My boy's first birthday is rapidly approaching. The first year has flown by and I've taken about 293298 photos of this amazing kid and printed a total of zero.
I should clarify, I've printed zero for us to keep. We did print a small stack around 6 months and then around 9 months to send to the great grandparents who lack e-mail. But we have precious few actual photos.
My idea now is to take some of the best pictures I have of the Frog (my almost 1 year old lovely boy!) and print them into a book that would capture his first year.
I know Snapfish does printed books, I get e-mails that tell me Walgreens does them and now I have an ad on my blog running advertizing Picaboo as another source of memory book.
I need advice. Where can a low cash mama spend a little and get a quality product that will be treasured by a proud family?


When you are low on cash, you like free things. Free necessary items are always appreciated but what is often fun is a special treat that you don't "need" but that you'd really like to have.
Blog giveaways are one way to end up with a treat at no cost to you! I enter a few blog giveaways per week. So far I've been a winner just twice but I keep plugging away, entering and hoping for the best. Excellent odds at winning a blog giveaway exist if you are one of 200 or fewer entrants, or "low entry giveaways". Some blogs list low entry giveaways, my favorite is Tight Wad in Utah and I visit to try to win. No one really NEEDS a frog umbrella or a cool back to school marker set, but it sure is fun to find a package in the mail with a brand new item you didn't expect.
Giveaways are fun to enter and bring a lot of blog traffic your way also. Then you get addicted, spend too much time entering and before you know it you have to create an entirely different e-mail address just to play your giveaway games. Not that I've done that...

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Introducing Myself

I'm not new to the blogging world, I've kept a series of blogs for a decade. What is new to me is being both a mother and being low on cash. Times are difficult and while I don't exactly fit the definition of "working poor" I feel that I am close and can relate to the working poor like never before.
I find myself interested in things I'd never have thought would hold my interest: cloth diapers, quality natural baby products, whole foods, reducing consumption and packaging, natural childbirthing, attachment and natural parenting, and working as hard as possible to spend as much time with my son as possible.
Admitting you are Low on Cash is a hard pill to swallow and so this blog diverges from my more public postings and will go where I haven't gone before. My interests will be represented here, as will information that will help me and others in my Low Cash situation create a more peaceful existence for one another. Money doesn't buy happiness but the peace that comes with some financial stability is priceless and that peace is elusive for many of us.
Come along on my journey with me, maybe we'll all learn something.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I'm Low on Cash

What else do I need to say?
I have no money. I am a mom and a wife, I work full time at a job that doesn't bring in enough money. I don't enjoy being poor and hopefully will not be for long, or at least not forever. This is what I get for falling in love with a perpetual student and for choosing a career that is worthy and altruistic and that pays jack squat. I am a social worker.
Being financially challenged has led me to seek any and all opportunities for extra cash. Cash goes to my son's daycare provider, into my gas tank (of my small, efficient car), and into our limited grocery budget. Luxuries are not in the budget, and I'm not alone! I am grateful to be employed at all in this time of economic recession.

I will willingly and happily post here about giveaways, opportunities for internet money making, tasks that working or SAH parents can do to get a little extra for their families.