They included freebies, coupons, giveaways, announcements of sales, and so forth. I was quite excited over the prospect of getting great deals and saving money for our family.
But as the months went on, I found these lists less and less useful. As the mother of four, how is that possible?
Turns out that these money-saving services aren't really aimed at mothers in general. They're aimed at new mothers, women with children who cannot use the toilet, feed themselves, or read.
If I still had the need for cheap diapers, strollers, board books, car seats, booster seats, high chairs, building blocks, bibs, bath toys, and videos with bouncing shapes and characters singing mind-numbing songs, I'd be having a ball.
But I don't, and I'm not.
See, my children are older than that. They're not only potty trained and can feed themselves, but they also dress themselves, one is learning to drive, another babysits for the neighbors, another is on a dance team, and the youngest steals my Kindle to read novels.
Since these newsletters and blogs are pretty useless to me, I've unsubscribed from several of them and delete the rest. (Those I haven't unsubbed from I hang on to with the dim hope that maybe, just maybe, I'll find something useful.)
I wish they were honest about what they're offering. They are not catering to moms. They're catering to mothers of babies and young children.
Based on their definition, I don't qualify as a mom. But I am most definitely a mom, and if I've learned anything in the sixteen years I've been one, it's that children get more, not less, expensive as they age.
Some ideas (a small but growing list, I'm sure) for making a useful mother's deal site:
- Trade-ins for new jeans in the men's section because your son is having yet another growth spurt and the ones you bought two weeks ago are too short but look brand new.
- By one, get one free, scientific calculators (with a bonus graphing calculator) for teens taking upper math.
- School-supply sales that go beyond crayons and markers (my suggestion: case lot sales for pallets of binders).
- Inexpensive locker decoration ideas (mostly for daughters).
- Frequent-customer punch cards for local orthodontists.
- Make-up sales (again, for teen daughters).
- Rebates where you get college tuition instead of cash.
- Notices on sales for hair products since all the kids now use not just hairspray, but mousse or gel.
- Also sales on shampoo and conditioner, since with puberty, they need to wash their hair more often.
- Giveaways on hair dryers, straighteners, and curling irons (with bonus entries if you have multiple daughters, since those things are dang expensive).
- Two words: free gas.
And finally: deep discounts on massages. For Mom, of course. She needs it.