Friday, April 22, 2016

Bundles: Saving time and money when you have a baby

Bundle it all! I'm a big fan of automating anything that I can, to reduce the stress that comes with wondering if I remembered to do X or Y. Seriously: after I found, I put shampoo and body wash on auto-order for about three years and never thought about it twice.

Between a new baby and law school, I knew I wouldn't have enough time to worry about little things like running out of diapers or dish soap, so I did a little research over the summer and decided to invest in some bundles. That way I could budget exactly what I would spend every month on essentials, get them delivered without having to buy ten packs of diapers to efficiently use a coupon, and, hopefully, stay ahead of the curve. Here's my top three options for baby bundle options:
  • Honest Co.: Since I am allergic to pretty much everything that can touch my skin, I have used Honest Co. dish soap, detergent, and body wash for a while, and used their essentials bundle after buying a discounted voucher on Zulily. I knew they would be my safest option for diapers and wipes, so I decided to just go with their diaper bundle. It's 6 packs of diapers, which lasts us about 6 weeks, plus 4 packs of wipes, which I use for literally everything and somehow still have a pile of back up packs under the dresser. Bundles are $79.95, and since I had a 25% off code for the first one as well as a number of gift cards, I probably didn't pay for diapers until December. I love the cute prints they have year round, and the seasonal prints are absolutely adorable. (referral link if you want to try them out) I especially love that I can still add on cleaning or extra items for 25% off, so I can easily order dish soap or diaper cream and have it all come at once. 
  • I got a ton of Target gift cards for my baby shower, and used them to fill out everything I needed from my baby registry. While I was browsing online, I also noticed that lets you subscribe and save about 5% off whatever you order, plus free shipping. You can use this for anything from diapers and wipes (but not Honest Co. diapers) to formula to the Kiinde Twist milk storage bags I used.
    Right now I use it for formula, since we're switching from breast milk to formula and "grown up" food. Instead of getting a 40 oz box of up&up brand formula for $23.49 every time I go to Target, I just ordered six boxes for $133.89, and can adjust the shipping date as needed. You might save more than 5% if coupons come up on the Cartwheel app, though, so this is entirely more for peace of mind than actual money saving. I do try to make my own purees when I have time, but I do love the up&up brand food pouches, which are usually about $0.89, while Plum Organics pouches are about $1.39; ordering these in bulk definitely saves time, as does ordering a shipment of formula and pouches to ship to my in laws when we are there for a week.
  • Amazon also has Amazon Family, which is basically a version of Amazon Prime which gives you a 15% completion discount for any registry items, plus 20% off diaper and wipe subscriptions. I currently have a Student prime account, so I wasn't eligible for this, but it will work basically the same as either the Honest Co. or Target subscriptions (except you can't get Honest Co. diapers through the subscription program). 
    I do use Amazon for literally everything but diapers and food though. Prior to going into labor, I made an Amazon list called "Coming Home" and included stuff like dermaplast, ibuprofen, bamboobies pads, and extra pads; while we were still in the hospital, I just adjusted what I needed and hit "order," and everything was waiting when I got home. Whenever I think of things I need, like extra pacifiers, outlet covers, or even just a nice pair of fleece baby pants, Amazon is my go-to for ordering. 
Almost eight months into this baby thing, I am so glad that online ordering is an option. While I love browsing through Target every once in a while, ordering stuff online definitely helps me stick to a budget, makes sure I get what I need when I need it, and saves a little bit of money too. 

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