So, your kids are older and you are done paying for daycare. How many years did you spend writing huge checks to daycare and fantasizing about what you would do with all of that extra money?! How many times did you calculate all of the baller stuff you could afford if not for the daycare bill? My husband and I could have leased three luxury SUV's for the monthly cost of our two kids in daycare. We could have gone to Tahiti twice a year. We could have paid a mortgage on a whole other house. Now that we are not paying for daycare anymore because of my new work-at-home situation and the kids being in full-day school, I am still not seeing that extra money in our budget. The fact is, older kids cost a lot of money too. It might not be formula and diapers but it's still significant. It's pretty amazing to me how quickly it's been absorbed and all of those things I thought we could start buying just aren't happening. Maybe it's because of the below list of things we are paying for now that we are done paying for daycare:
1. Sign-Up Fees For Kid's Sports Teams
Now that our kids are older, they are starting to join more teams and holy hell, between sign-up fees and equipment we spend more than I ever could have imagined.
2. Allowance For Your Kids
Kids need their own dolla dolla bills, ya'll! Only they can't work yet so it's YOUR dolla dolla bills for now.
3. New Shoes...For Your Kids
Because they outgrow them every three months and sometimes, destroy them well before that.
4. Taking Your Kids To See A Movie
Have you been to a movie theater lately? We spent $80 between the four of us last summer seeing a movie and buying popcorn. If you want your kids to be the only ones not going to the latest Disney craze then I guess you can avoid this ridiculous expense.
5. Orthopedic Bills For Your Kid's Broken Arm
Our daughter broke her arm this past spring and we blew through our HSA and then some. Such fun!
6. More Groceries Because Your Kids Eat Everything
Oh God, since when do first graders pack away as much food as a 200-lb. man? The older they get, the more I have to buy. Last week was well over $200 and the cupboards were looking lean after three days. They never.stop.eating.
7. Birthday Gifts For All The Parties Your Kids Go To
Even if you only do a handful of the parties your kids get invited to and spend $15-20 on a gift, that adds up quickly. Your second grader has as more active social life than you do!
8. New Car Because You Can't Drive Your Kid's AND Their Friends In Yours
We are heading into the phase where my kids want to bring friends home from school or have a friend spend the night at Nana and Papa's camp. My backseat is getting squished, I may have to cave and get a mini-van.
9. Big Kid Toys
As your kids get older, the toys and games they want get more expensive. American Girl dolls, tablets, video game systems- holy shit, it never ends.
We had an appointment for our seven year old recently and the dentist said she would almost certainly need braces one day. Better take it out of the Tahiti account.
(Image: Aaron Amat/Shutterstock)