How Rich Could You Be If You Bought '90s Apple Stock Instead of Having Kids?

iStock
iStock

Kids are expensive. Everyone knows that. But it’s hard to visualize just how much money you spend while raising those precious babies to adulthood. To give you the bleak outlook, try out WhatIfIBoughtAppleInstead.com, a calculator that compares how much raising a child costs versus how much money you could have if you put that money into Apple stock instead.

For instance, I was born in 1990. Using cost data from the Consumer Expenditure Survey, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and Yahoo Finance, the calculator estimates that even without the cost of college, 18 years of raising me probably cost my parents somewhere around $419,000. (Sorry, guys.) Instead, they could have bought 193,283 Apple shares, and they’d be $21.1 million richer. This is a whole new way to feel guilty about not calling your parents enough, particularly if you were born in the days before Apple became the world’s biggest company.

Life is a little more complicated than this kind of simple calculator can handle, so these aren't cut-and-dry figures. Maybe my parents would actually only be $20 million richer if they replaced me with an investment in Steve Jobs. Either way—parental love: so valuable.

Calculate the cost of your own birth or the birth of your own children here.

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Wednesday’s Best Amazon Deals Include Computer Monitors, Plant-Based Protein Powder, and Blu-ray Sets

Amazon
Amazon
As a recurring feature, our team combs the web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, December 2. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

Never Got a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine as a Kid? You Can Still Buy One This Holiday Season

LUCKYPENNY VIA YOUTUBE
LUCKYPENNY VIA YOUTUBE

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Even as toys have gotten more complex in recent decades, one low-tech item has held a perennial spot on holiday wishlists. The Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine was a hit when it debuted in 1979, and kids and nostalgic adults can still get their hands on one this December.

People who grew up in the 1980s may remember commercials promoting the “yum-yum fun” plastic appliance. Like the Easy Bake Oven and the Frosty Sno-Man Sno-Cone Machine before it, the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine allowed kids to make edible treats at home. The Peanuts branding made the toy popular with kids, and despite the elbow grease required to crank a couple of ice cubes into shaved ice, it's stuck around.

If you asked for a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine for the holidays as a kid and never received one, you can still make your childhood dreams come true. The retro product is available practically unchanged from how it appeared in the 1980s. The biggest changes are that the hand crank is now easier to turn and there's a clamp for stabilizing the machine while you use it. Get one for yourself or a loved one from Amazon today for $30.

Looking for more nostalgic gift ideas? Here are some items the Millennials in your life will love.