How many holidays have you spent surrounded by hundreds of little pieces to games and toys that delight your kids for about a day? Kids don't need every single new toy and fad that comes around. Unstructured and undirected play is crucial to a child's development, and it can also create less of a strain on your wallet. Skip the coloring books and give them blank pieces of paper. The backs of paper you've already used will work perfectly. A box of old clothes will give them hours of dress up fun, and items found in nature make great art supplies.
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- "4 Ways to save expenses while raising children." Debtconsolidationcare.com. October 7, 2011.http://www.debtconsolidationcare.com/wiki/personal-finance/4-Ways-to-save-expenses-while-raising-children.html
- Gilbert, Sarah. "Cost to raise a child can be much less than USDA estimate." Dailyfinance.com. June 14, 2010. http://www.dailyfinance.com/2010/06/14/cost-to-raise-a-child-can-be-much-less-than-usda-estimate/
- "Low Cost Kids: Ways to Save When Raising Children." Frugallyminded.com. October 7, 2011. http://www.frugallyminded.com/family/low-cost-kids-ways-to-save-when-raising-children/
- "The Serious Need for Play." Scientificamerican.com. January 28, 2009. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-serious-need-for-play
Dollar stores — where most items cost just a buck — always seem to make money. HowStuffWorks finds out how they do it.