Friday, June 15, 2018

Freedom!

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I have been employed full-time since about 2005. In that time, I have worked for Home Depot, a magazine manufacturer, a small electrical business, a book manufacturer, and now a university. I have definitely had a lot of growth as a person and as an employee since my first full-time position.

When my husband and I found out we were pregnant and made it past the half-way point, we began discussing child care. Our first thought was to have my cousin be our "nanny". She loves children and I know my child would be treated amazingly in my cousin's care. We discussed this with my cousin and came to an agreement. However, we wanted to do this legally as my husband is ex-law enforcement and, due to my anxiety issues, I always want to do everything the "proper" way. We contacted a lawyer who specialized in this type of thing to ask some questions. After that, we figured out having my cousin legally watch our child would not work. Due to laws in our state, we would have to pay her state minimum wage plus time-and-a-half for anything over 40 hours a week. Her base pay would be more than I make in a month. We would also have to pay for federal and state taxes and have a special type of home insurance.

After informing my cousin of the bad news, we started looking into day cares in our area. Unfortunately, for many of them, the baby would have to be at least sixteen weeks old before he would be accepted into any of them. Considering the max amount of time off with FMLA is twelve weeks, this wasn't ideal. After that, we began looking at rates. The cheapest we found was about $250 a week which is about $1000 a month. That is around half my monthly income. We discussed it more and realized that, due to our commute, we would both be away from baby for around 10.5 hours a day. That's a lot of time away from our sweet boy!

So, we decided to look into one of us staying at home. We are really good at budgeting so we made a budget based off of a single income. Surprisingly, it worked out! We discovered we would really have to make some adjustments to our miscellaneous spending, but it would be doable. At tat time, we had a discussion about who would work and who wouldn't. We're not traditional in the sense that neither of us feels like he needs to work and I need to stay home. However, it ended up making more sense for me to stay home for two main reasons. The first being that my husband has a bachelor's degree while I don't so he would be eligible for more promotions and higher pay than me. The second is that I am planning on breastfeeding and it would be easier to breastfeed while at home with the baby instead of having to pump at work and bottle feed.

All that is to say that today is my last day of work! FREEDOM!!! After today, I will have about a month until my due date to rest and prepare for baby's arrival (assuming he makes it to his due date or near there). I am so excited! We have so much to do in the nursery! I am planning a post once it's set up to share the before (ish - we forgot to take a picture before we painted), the middle (during our kitchen remodel and after our baby shower), and the after photos. I am feeling very much like nesting and can't wait to have all day to work in the nursery. Once I get home from work, I don't have the energy so things are not progressing in there the way I would like.

Also, a fair warning, once I am staying at home, there are probably going to be lots of entries about me trying to figure out how to survive on the restricted budget we created. While we do follow a budget, it currently has a lot of wiggle room. Starting July 1st, we lose all of that wiggle room and have to be strict about what we're purchasing. Should be interesting... to say the least!

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