When I think back to my child free days I can't believe how frivolous I was with money. As soon as pay day arrived the money seemed to burn a hole in my pocket and I was straight to Topshop to fritter it away on clothes.
When we found out we were having Ava and I returned to work part time following maternity leave we did miss the extra cash and we would have definitely benefited from Legal & General's budgeting techniques for parents. Nowadays when pay day hits I am much more sensible. I look at my finances and think about what I'm doing during the month and how much money I will need, Nath and I have separate accounts which may seem odd to some but I find that we manage our money much better this way, it also means that I don't feel guilty for going out and treating myself once in a while.
Soon after Ava was born I cancelled a few direct debits that I no longer needed. I am also cancelling my gym membership this month as nowadays I much prefer doing "home" workouts and haven't been to the gym in months, it's such a waste of money.
When I'm buying for myself I'm a lot more careful. I rarely buy myself anything but when I do I make sure that I really love it and am going to wear it. I usually ask for more expensive items like coats or bits of make up for Christmas or my birthday so that I don't have to dip into my own money.
I also mix it up fashion wise and buy online from shops such as Missguided which are cheaper or I buy things in the sale. This then allows me to have money for the things that we really need.
As we're also still, very slowly, doing up our house I'm enjoying buying things from different places. Buying cheaper smaller items from shops such as Ikea or Wilkinson means that we can afford to buy nice curtains from Next or a new handmade mantel piece.
I think that budgeting as a parent comes down to compromise a lot of the time. Although we are hardly hard done by I do often weigh up the pluses and minuses of buying something and ask myself if we really need it. Nowadays I think before I buy and am much more careful with my money. Something with I hope I can pass on to Ava.
*Disclaimer- I was compensated for this post but view and opinions are 100% my own