The Finances are currently weighing heavily on my mind. With a new baby on the way my thoughts are increasing filled with all the things I want to do with my baby once she is here. This brings up visions of play dates, fresh baked bread, crafts - all the things that were part of my childhood with my stay-at-home mother. I keep thinking that I can/will work at least part time and be able to spend most of my time raising my daughter.
I have been feeling like something, some opportunity will present itself and worst case scenario, I will keep the job that I have and but back to part time, this will involve continuing to get up at 4:30 in the morning (or earlier to nurse before I leave) and work 6am-10am, them meet my husband with the baby so he can work 10am-6pm.
While this is a workable situation and will allow us the funds we need to keep functioning, it is far from ideal and the more I think about it and the closer I get to having my baby the more I am dreading the thought of coming back and trying to work outside the home.
So, what are my choices? I could start selling something, Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, Tupperware, etc. or what? My skills lie in my ability to type, organize, handle multiple administrative tasks and the like. I am not interested in selling make-up or making cold calls trying to sell crap to people who don't need or want it. I want to use my own skills and strengths to make some extra money without being tied to set hours, another location or anything else that limits or restricts time with this child I have been wanting for so long!!
I have thought about trying to make some contacts with others who may need after school care for their older children and this might really work for me, except that I don't know how to get started. Older children would be great, they can do their homework and play with each other, while I keep them safe and concentrate on my infant. Again, not sure how I would go about finding people who need this service and if I did, why would they trust me?? They don't know me!
I also think that typing up reports or files would be something that I could do, something that would allow me to work when the baby is napping or when my husband is home. This would be something that I could work on when it suited me and as long as I met whatever deadline was needed by whoever hired me to do this everything would be great! Again, not sure how to make this happen or where to start.
The other side of this is to see what cuts we can make in our spending to decrease the amount of money each month is needed from me. When I look at the bills, we have about $1500 in credit card debt and pay about $100 each month. My desire is to work hard to pay this off before the baby comes, so there is $100 cut from the bills. We also have a gym membership that is $60 a month and we will be canceling that as soon as the contract is up in April 2010, so that will save us another $60 a month. We are members of NetFlix ($9) and LifeLock($9), which can be canceled and that would save us $18 a month - what are we up to?? $178 a month saved.
What's next? We have our mortgage, water bill, electric, phones, car payment, car insurance that are not flexible and with the way that the electric bill has increase 150% in less than 2 years I can't imagine any of those bills are going to do anything but go up!
Lastly, we have our investments, we invest $50 a month in a money market (emergency fund) and $100 a month into a Roth IRA. Now, I could stop contributing to those for a while and save us another $150.00 - bringing the total I can cut from the budget to $328. Now, if I cut down on the food budget and I am not driving as much, and can cut my gas budget, we may be able to squeeze another $100 a month in savings.. maybe!
Now, with all that saving and my husbands current salary, I will still need to bring home about $300 a week to make all the ends meet. That is with nothing extra, no medical bills, no vacations, no Christmas gifts, nothing extra!! Nothing!!
How did our society get to the point where a family is unable to get by on one income? We do not have an extravagant home, or expensive cars, we don't carry a lot of debt or eat out all the time. About our only splurge is our cable TV and even if we cut that off, it would only save us less than $30 a week (and the cable includes the Internet).
The best option would be to have 3 older kids that I pick up from school and watch until their parents get off work. If I charged $100 a week per child, then 3-4 kids would be enough. I guess I am just going to have to pray that I run into people who need child care or some other opportunity presents itself.
I am going to plan on coming back to my company in at least a part time fashion, but I am going to hope and pray that something happens that will allow me to stay home. I just don't know if I can leave my baby.
Any thoughts? Tips? Helpful advice??