I know you just wrote a book on kids and money, but here's our best tip: We put our 15 year old in charge of the family finances. We homeschool, so he'll get 1/2 a credit for it too. We began by taking him to a free six week course on money sponsored by a local church. We talked about budgets, credit, tithing, and accountability. Then, we showed him our finance folder:
1) The "master" 2012 budget which lists each category and how much money is allotted each month to each category.
I've been taking college classes for some time now and found that many times I can find an "International" edition of a specific textbook for less than the US edition listed for class. I've found them mostly found on Amazon.com.
I love reading women's magazines. I find it relaxing to sit and read them while I wait to pick the kids up at school, or while they play at the park.
Unfortunately magazine individual copies can be expensive, from $1.99 - $4.99 each.
Well, our local library has a "used" book section that sells magazines for 5 cents each. I found three, current month, magazines, in like new condition, and paid only 15 cents total. These would have cost about $12 new. Then I make it even better by donating them to the local clinic for their waiting room.
Cheap snack for kids! Take sandwich bread and top with applesauce and cinnamon. Make a sandwich and butter both sides. Cook like a grilled cheese sandwich. Sprinkle with sugar and you have an instant apple pie. The kids love it!
When my boys were young (now 19 and 16) they loved to paint pictures so I bought them the paper from office supply stores that comes in easel pads and when they were done with the pictures we used it for wrapping paper. They loved telling everyone that they had made the paper.
As a single guy, saving to go to grad school, I’ve seen the value of sticking to a well defined budget. With careful planning I’ve been able to save between 30 to 40 percent of my income while still enjoying my lifestyle. Yes, I’ve eliminated a few “luxuries” but haven’t really noticed a decline in my enjoyment.
Buy a membership to a museum or aquarium. The total cost depends on how many you want to put on the membership. But, you'll save money after several uses. It also gives you places to take visitors when you have company. There discounts even at their gift shops. But one of the best things is that some memberships are honored at related museums in other states.