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June 4th, 2011 at 11:15 am

I just posted a financial/savings update and updated my sidebar (see last post, too).

I don't have enough time to post all I Want to today. But, will get some of it out.

Today was supposed to be a nice day - maybe a hike - swimming with cousins, etc. We have an 80th birthday party to attend tonight. Woke up to pouring rain. OF course, with the stormy/cloudy weather last night, I told dh I supposed we wouldn't go early. Will drive 2 hours for dinner. 2 hours back. Not San Jose - going up north. BUT, cousin thought it was a great idea to get a condo there overnight (has 3 SMALL kids) and why she invited us swimming, etc. Was a nice plan, anyway. Any other year but this one!

I must admit I do feel extremely *off* and I suppose the weather has a lot to do with it. I keep telling myself at least we don't have devastating tornadoes, and flooding, etc. As several friends and relatives are dealing with. But truth is this weather is really annoying me. We don't live in California for rain and storms. Non-100 degree weather is nice (since we usually get a heat wave in May), but too extreme in the other direction to actually enjoy. So there is my petty whine.

I was telling dh about an article in the newspaper about 3 different weather phenomenons that are potentially causing storms and 20-degree lower temps than usual. For many many months (winter, spring, and now into summer). Dh replies with, "I know why it's raining like crazy. Because I still have my mom's umbrella!" I burst out laughing at that. I had forgotten about that. She brought it up for BM's recital - when we had ultra weird weather. She wanted dh to meet her half way and return it the following week. To which dh and I both replied with, "Um, hell no." I just rolled my eyes and said something like, "Yeah, like she needs her umbrella. Whatever..." I had forgotten about that, but had to laugh when dh mentioned it. Guess she is upset we have her umbrella still. Rightly so. Will return it tonight. (For the record - we use umbrellas, never? Once in a blue moon??? Never in May or June).

Without the A/C, and with all the rain, will have lower than usual water and electric bills. Financially, is the plus side. I am curious how our electric usage will compare to last May. The house has settled about 70F degrees - no air or heat needed. Usually we are well into A/C weather by now.


I had to share one more thing. Dh and I never do what everyone else is doing. We ALWAYS seem to be ying-ing while everyone else is yang-ing.

With the economy? We chose a very bare bones lifestyle when we first had children, so dh didn't have to work and so I could take some leave as well. So, basically, when the economy was good we were pinching our pennies severely. Of course, even before that we were, since were saving for a home, for kids, etc.

Then the economy tanks and suddenly everyone is cutting back and struggling. I'd say we had better times. Because I was working 100%, if nothing else. We've gotten some decent tax breaks. We got far more efficient with our budget, etc., etc.

I am used to most people being jealous of the fact that dh does not work. Jealous, envious, in awe, admired, whatever. People take it different ways. Many of our friends and family have been striving to take the same plunge.

But, for dh is I think very different than most people realize. He wasn't established in a career. He only work 2-3 years after college, and was not a big career kind of job. He was laid off, initially, and has looked for work a solid 2-3 years in the past decade. Was not 100% choice. I admit we planned ahead enough to just deal with.

BUT, from my perspective, he has a solid 30-year career ahead of him.

I am just setting the stage. On top of this, we have talked at length about him returning to the workforce soon. Whether he works very part-time while the kids are in school, to help us save more, or if he starts over and is career bound. His personal preference is to start a career and contribute heavily to the household. I don't think anyone *gets* that. I get the impression several of our friends think he is just lazy. Though he flounders with his career goals, etc., the truth is he has a huge work ethic and feels like he should work. He feels we should both work full-time, honestly, for the long run. I don't necessarily agree.

Anyway, serious talks are set aside for fall. Once both kids have the same school schedule. I think I kind of felt dh needed a break, and expected this year to be a much harder transition for LM. It wasn't, but why add daycare on top of Kindergarten? IF we didn't need to. Maybe it wouldn't have gone so smooth in that case.

& so here we are making a plan and moving forward, and everyone we know is quitting their job. What the heck???

It's WEIRD. Dh's sister was laid off and offered a generous severance. She wants to stay home indefinitely. MIL tells me her and cousin could never afford to stay home. Now she tells me cousin is well on her way. (They choose mortgages triple ours, by living in expensive area, and their spouses do not make big money - their pay is decent).

My other cousin just had a third baby - three very small ones - she quit her job.

My good friend just went part-time. We met for lunch and I figured she'd probably tell me she quit. Is her long-term goal. She did make the first step on that road - is winding down. She doesn't want to work again.

& so the trend is... Quit when kids start school.

Honestly, I think most of them are crazy. LOL. Let's work full time and go absolutely insane with babies and daycare, and then once they are in school, quit working. I am not saying that all my working mom friends aren't stressed beyond belief, even with school-aged children. But the order of things does strike me as odd. Everyone I mentioned is giving up BIG paying jobs - a decade into their solid careers. They will tell me, "Oh - can't you relate?" Building a career for 10 years and just walking away? No, neither dh nor I can relate.

I think SIL thinks that she and dh will get the kids together all the time and such. I think dh will be working and so goes the ying and the yang.

To be fair, financially this may have been a good road for them. They may have saved a TON while we focused on a much more modest and lower-income lifestyle. Maybe they will never have to work again. I don't know. I hope it works well for everyone. But, it's a sea of change. As for us, we'd probably rather do just about anything than both work full-time with small kids/babies. We may live longer because we haven't added all that stress to our lives. I have no doubt every one of these people is due a BIG BREAK. They have taken on far too much in recent years.

I just think it's interesting. Will all our friends and family be slowing down while we ramp it up again? It looks that way. We are always opposite, for whatever reason, so, what else is new?

4 Responses to “Updates”

  1. KiwiJo09 Says:

    I think people see the same thing in my hubby that they do in yours. It isn't that he doesn't want to work full-time. It's that it's difficult to find full-time work. I'm sure you guys will figure it out. Smile Best of luck

  2. baselle Says:

    Reads to me like many in your circle are mentally burned to a crisp and are leaving their jobs. I don't think they really have much saved but the choice (to them) is unemployment versus jail because they'll kill their boss. Maybe the kids are factored in, but maybe not.

    Situations like these are really why you've got to concentrate on the hand you are playing fiscally and not bother being envious. Your one paycheck household works for you, probably your two paycheck household will work for you because you've planned and implemented your plan. The plan and your willingness to implement your plan are what set you apart, not your zigging when others are zagging.

  3. MonkeyMama Says:

    "I don't think they really have much saved"

    Actually - I wouldn't assume this - these are more fiscally conservative people than average. Giant mortgages aside. A couple of the people I know making the leap live elsewhere and don't have the high cost of living to contend with. I mostly mentioned relatives - who run far more fiscally conservative than average. For most of them, the women make far more, and so it a bit of a conundrum. If they don't want to work, but make far more income than their spouse.

    I think a lot of the zig/zag too is just not following the herd - thinking for ourselves. I just don't know how that translates to always being opposite on some level! It's not like we say "Let's do opposite of everyone else!" I guess it is what it is.

  4. baselle Says:

    "I don't think they really have much saved"

    As Warren Buffett famously said, "when the tide goes out, we see who has been swimming naked." I look forward to reading about the plans of your friends in about 6 months. It'll be either for schadenfreude or cost saving tips. Big Grin

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