I majored in education, but I always knew I wanted to be home when my kids were little. Thankfully, I married a very frugal man. Even though we we married right out of college, my husband was wise enough to suggest that we live on one income. For six years, we lived on one income and saved the other. Our first apartment was so small that we could vacuum it all from one outlet, and there were many fun things that we skipped (expensive trips, dinners out, etc…). But, we learned to live on one salary, and we were able to build a nice savings account. As my children grow, I hope we can share this idea with them. I have been able to stay home with my children throughout their early years, and I am so grateful for this time.
Planning before you start a family is one of the strategies mentioned by Cathi Brese Doebler in her new book Ditch The Joneses, Discover Your Family: How to Thrive on Less Than Two Incomes!, but Cathi shares many other wise suggestions as well. Not everyone is able to plan ahead in the same way, but there are many other options for having a parent at home full-time or even part-time. Cathi gives tips for creating a budget and saving options for those looking to reduce or eliminate their jobs outside the home. She also shares ideas for approaching companies about doing some work from home and even shares example letters. There are many opportunities for self-employment, and Cathi discusses these while also discussing the impact of changes in the work place that can happen while a parent is at home. I especially appreciate that Cathi not only shares her own ideas, but also includes many charts to use as aides, along with other resources to use in financial planning. Additionally, the book is filled with prayers and scriptures for families to use as they make decisions and plans.
For many families, these decisions are tough, and there are many solutions. Although some families choose to have two full-time working parents, many families would like to find ways to have one or both parents home more, particularly when their children are very young. Cathi Brese Doebler’s book is an excellent resource that can help parents find a path that works for them. This book is helpful and practical. If you are looking for ways to manage the work/home balance, be sure to pick up a copy of Ditch The Joneses, Discover Your Family: How to Thrive on Less Than Two Incomes!.
Lauren is a wife, mother of two, and an avid reader. She blogs at Baseballs and Bows.