At the XX Factor, Helaine Olen points us to a new magazine, Luckykids — a shopping magazine for kiddie stuff. Like Olen I was surprised. Why dump Domino and then launch this? Who would buy this magazine? Olen explains that spending on kids is quite healthy, despite the recession.
Not surprisingly, the cost of raising children has continued to creep upward in recent years, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimating that the cost of raising a middle-income child to the age of 18 is a little more than $222,000 in 2009, up 1.4 percent from 2007. (That number excludes college costs.) The number for upper-income families: $369,000.
We live in a culture where maternal love is all too often conflated with monetary demonstrations of that love. The publisher and editors at Lucky Magazine are simply the latest to recognize that truth. They are unlikely to be the last.
After reading this, for a moment, I felt virtuous. After all, my kids were wearing cheap Old Navy t-shirts to school today. But then I remembered a series of phone calls that I had with my mom this morning. We panicked because Lego has discontinued their Spongebob series, and Ian has been talking for months about getting Sandy's Rocket Ship for Christmas. Some scalpers are selling them on Amazon for triple the cost. We found a more reasonable alternative, but the end result is consumption. It's not conspicuous spending, but it is consumption on kids nonetheless.
Question of the Day: Do you think you spend too much money on your kids?