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By Heather C.
|My oldest in her first Easter dress|
With the birth of two new babies in our home, and my new position as a stay-at-home-mom, our budget has gotten significantly tighter. It has definitely changed our lifestyle and it’s even safe to say that we’ve struggled through a few paychecks. So with Easter right around the corner, I did some research and had to come up with some of my most creative ideas to make sure our daughters still get the special holiday they deserve.
· I know Easter breakfast has always been a big family thing for us. Many years in the past, the family would all meet up at a restaurant for brunch. $10-$15 per person later, we’d all hug and part ways. Instead, have your family members each bring a dish to your house. Try a quiche or hash brown casserole. One person can be responsible for bringing juice and milk, etc. Eating at home not only saves you money, it gives you more time to spend with your family.
· Save plastic Easter eggs from year to year. Our oldest daughter is almost three. Her grandparents are notorious for gifting full Easter baskets to her. Each year, we empty out the plastic eggs and toss them in a Rubbermaid storage container in our basement. We’ve never purchased the eggs ourselves and we have more than enough for many baskets for years to come.
· Make your own Easter basket. This year, I’m actually crocheting baskets for each of my three girls. Other ideas? Use a practical object in place of a basket. Last year, we used a sand pail for an Easter basket and filled it with beach toys. We’ve also done kid size tote bags and purses as Easter baskets in years past.
· Choose fruit snacks or raisins to fill your Easter eggs with instead of candy. This may not save money but you will be more than glad when your child isn’t on a sugar high at the end of the day. If you do decide on candy, avoid chocolate as it will melt in the eggs if you do an outdoor hunt and make a mess. (Again, not a money saving thing, just an extra tip from one mom to another!)
· Use nickels and dimes to fill eggs instead of dollars. Older children may notice, especially if you’ve given larger dollar amounts in the past, but younger children love coins to put in their piggy bank. They don’t care what the value of it is.
· Check out the dollar section at your favorite toy store. I personally am a fan of Target’s value section. Right now in preparation for Easter they have goodies from coloring books to socks, all for just $1-$2.50 each.
· Avoid crowded malls or city egg hunts that cost money. You can hide eggs in your backyard and have just as much fun.
· Try going to a local park and use the natural light to take pictures. Find your Easter dresses at a thrift store or host a casual Easter instead.
More than anything remember what Easter is all about. Whether you believe in the religious aspect of it or not, it’s about renewing the bonds in your family. If you are on a budget, don’t fret. Easter does not have to be Martha Stewart style. It just has to be fun and loving.
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