Friday, March 4, 2011

So You Think You Can SAHM...

First, before I get to the major part of my post, I would like to say Happy Friday!!!! I'm doing my Friday dance right now as I drink my Americano! I love the weekends. I really miss having all my kids home with me during the weekdays. I know. Crazy weird homeschooly mom. Look at that, though. Who wouldn't want to be around this lovey?! Possibly me when I haven't had my coffee and she's throwing some major 'tude.

Where was I? Oh yes, staying home with the kiddos.

I've never been able to give someone a step by step answer for their being able to afford staying home with their children. Each situation is so very different from the next. Every family is different from their neighbor. It's hard to say 'Do 1,2 & 3 and you can stay home'.

I tried to break it down to simple, (fairly) all encompassing steps that will help you afford to stay home with your kiddos. First, though, I think you should ask yourself some questions:
  1. Is your spouse/other in agreement?
  2. Do you budget?
  3. What are your reasons for wanting to stay home with the kids?
Number 1- There has to be agreement for it to work. You've heard the phrase 'A house divided cannot stand'...well you can stand but it will be extremely difficult. Come to an agreement on a period of time where you get to try it, and then agree to re-assess the situation after it's over. Sometimes they need to 'see' it before they are ok with it.

Number 2- If you don't, do. You need to know how much money needs to come in each month. You need to know if the income from the one job is enough to cover the expenses. If you can trim then get out the butcher knife!

Number 3- You need to know why you're wanting to stay home. If it's from a desire to see your kids grow and really get to know them as a person you need to know that. If it's because you're tired of working...quit being lazy! Staying home with kids IS work!!

Now that you've sifted through all that, let's get to the good stuff. These are things that I think will get you well on your way to staying home with your kiddos, and enjoying it.
  1. Live off one income for a few months before you quit. It will help you and your family get used to the smaller budget. On the upside, you will be able to save the second income!
  2. Get out of debt. Not a necessity, but certainly will help trim down on your monthly expenses. 
  3. Listen to 'In Praise of Stay At Home Moms' by Dr. Laura
  4. Enjoy your kids!
If you're starting a 'trial period', then make it amazing! If you're going to be doing it full time until the kids begin school, I suggest joining a MOPS program. MOPS is Mothers Of PreSchoolers. They meet every other week (mine meets on Wednesdays) for 2 hours. They are encouraging and uplifting to mothers, while providing safe childcare for your children. Every mom needs to get away sometimes.

I may have forgotten something, so just ask! Like I said, every situation is different. But if it's truly something that you want to do, something in your heart, then I believe you can find a way! If it's something you sort of want to do, give it a shot! They are only young for a short amount of time. Enjoy it while you can.

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