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I delivered my own baby, by myself, in my car.

You know I'm always encouraging you to do things on your own to save money, but giving birth by yourself in a Prius isn't one of them. Everyone says the second baby comes faster than the first. They're right.

My husband and little brother loaded me into the car just 45 minutes after my contractions started, yet we still didn't make the six-mile drive to the hospital in time.

We got to the emergency room parking lot, my husband jumped out to get help, and Princess Sloane started crowning.

Inside the ER, the guard was mistaking the husband's panicked “My wife is having a baby” for the run-of-the-mill panicked husband's “My wife is having a baby,” rather than the “Holy cow! My wife is literally having a baby! In her yoga pants!”

There I was, howling like a wild animal, screams echoing into the September air, when poor husband rolled up with a wheelchair.

I don't remember yelling at him to “Get a PERSON!” but I heard someone or something growl those and other words in his direction.

Long story short, my daughter was born the old-fashioned way. Minutes later, the ER crew swept in, and all was right with the world.

People think it's just hilarious that the Discount Diva found a way to avoid paying the hospital's labor and delivery fees.

But believe me, this is one time I wouldn't have minded splurging.

As my doctor said, “You thought you were saving money delivering by yourself, but just wait until you get the bill from Delta Sonic!”

Yes, there are plenty of other ways to save money on labor and delivery, should you choose to do so at a hospital with doctors attending.

You can opt for a shared room rather than a private one (though I'd argue the extra $50 is worth the privacy). You can skip the epidural (although if I could have bought an epidural from the Burger King drive-thru, I would have). And who needs a television and phone in your room when all you'll want to do is sleep? You can also call hospitals in advance to find which one has the best average rates for maternity care.

Friends reminded me to check my bill closely to be sure the hospital didn't try to charge me for what I had taken care of myself. Even if you don't have a DIY birth, this is sound advice.

As I was combing through the charges for my daughter's birth, I came to a line billing me $250.

For a circumcision.

email: schristmann@buffnews.com or call MoneySmart at 849-4612. Follow me at www.Facebook.com/DiscountDiva.