Clothing and toys quickly become expendable objects due to the speed children outgrow them. So, instead of buying new and buying everything, check out used items instead. Get on the list to be the recipient of your friends' hand-me-downs as their kids grow. Garage sales and consignment stores are great for finding gently used kids' items.
If you're a germophobe this may not seem like an option for you, but take note: A quick wash on the hot cycle will remove any lingering cooties. Exceptions to the buy used rule are cribs and car seats. Manufacturers are continually upgrading these to meet new safety specifications, so you'll want to be current on these items.
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