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Money Makeovers

The arrival of a new baby has a shocking way of adjusting your priorities. That sweet cry at 3 a.m. isn't the only thing keeping you awake at night -- it's the sudden weight of new responsibilities (college savings, life insurance, a mortgage) along with baggage from your pre-parenting life (student loans, credit card debt, payments on that cute first car). Reconciling the money follies of your past and the cost of your dreams for your child can be overwhelming. It requires new ways of thinking about spending, saving, and investing. It may even call for an "extreme makeover," of the financial kind. Kevin McKinley, C.F.P., an Eau Claire, Wisconsin, financial planner and author of Make Your Kid a Millionaire, consulted with three couples -- all with new babies -- who shared their finances with BabyTalk.

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