Saturday, March 26, 2011

Toys R Us Great Bike Trade In

Sometimes things just work out with perfect timing. My daughter wanted to learn how to ride her bike without training wheels but it wasn't until we took them off that we realized that she was too tall for her bike. She got it on her 5th birthday (and will be 8 in August) so we should have known this was coming.

My husband started checking out bikes online and he saw that Toys R Us was having The Great Bike Trade In (last day is today 3/26) and we could get $20, $30, or $50 off a new bike (we figured it'd be $20 off because even with a discount we had a budget). Though her bike wasn't in horrible condition, we knew that we would never get $20 from a well-loved 3 year old bike.

We were already planning to get my son a new one since my almost 5 year old was still using his tricycle (that was his sister's 3rd birthday present) but we wanted to keep the tricycle for my youngest son to use. A friend offered to let us have an older bike she was planning on donating, so we were armed with 2 trade-in bikes and a helmet.

Old bikes ready to go!

Once we got there we were immediately given a coupon for the bikes and one for a helmet since we were able to find an old one to trade in as well. Then the great bike hunt was underway. We looked at every bike they had and put the kids on a few to try them out before deciding on these beauties:

The Buzzlightyear one is for my son, he was so excited about it. We were looking at price tags and that one was a bit more expensive than a plain green one would have been, but when we finally agreed to let him have it the employee told us it was the last bike with no box so it was $20 cheaper! This was such great news because it meant the bike came fully assembled and was $40 off the regular "assembled" price (after the $20 trade-in and $20 markdown for being the last one) and we got to take it home with us! My daughter picked out this beautiful purple and blue bike and it really showed me that she is growing up, since she opted for one that wasn't a character bike. We were going to just have both bikes assembled at Toys R Us ($10 more per bike, you pick them up 24 hours later) but since the Buzz bike was already fully assembled my husband decided to just put the blue together at home to save a trip (and $10). It ended up taking about an hour to get it put together.

I had a breakthrough last night when we got to see the joy on their faces as they picked out and played on their new bikes. This is why I work so hard to be frugal. Sure we probably could have waited and found second-hand bikes for them to use and they would have been great (we do that for many things like clothes and other toys). But for this moment it was nice to be able to go and pick out exactly what they wanted, and still do it in a frugal way. It was a wonderful compromise, we still saved money compared to just buying one off the shelf, but we were also able to splurge for something special.

When you decide to live a frugal lifestyle, there really isn't one set way to do so. You can follow different tips and tricks, like the ones I share here, but really in the end you need to decide what to do for your own family. I try to trim the grocery budget down as much as I can, we do not drive all over town, my kids are enrolled only in free activities, and we find many frugal forms of entertainment. Doing these things make it more comfortable for us week to week but also allow us the chance to splurge occasionally, and to feel really good when we do because it isn't an everyday thing.

What does being frugal mean to you?


  1. Wow, great timing indeed! Being frugal is about being conscious what you need and what is out there. Sometimes it means buying the more expensive option if that option is one the works best and saves you time and money in the end. Other times it means being on the lookout for value, savings and reuse options. It depends on the situation, but it all comes down to just being aware of waste and cutting it out when you can.

    It just requires me to be less reckless with my time and money and to revaluate what I need and what I want.

    I'm a friend from the Purex Insiders! Come by and follow me back!

    Michelle @ Things Sent My Way

  2. The value of your time is a good point too. I could spend an hour and save 5 cents, and really considering I have a family to care for that isn't the best use of my time. There are some things that I may end up paying more than I could be paying for it, but would end up spending more of my time and that isn't something I have a lot of anymore.

    Thank you for stopping by!


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