Rambly Update – Let the Nesting Commence!

Hi everyone!  First of all, holy crap crayon!  I’ve missed so many amazing life events, from engagements to pregnancies to anniversaries to milestone birthdays!  Hugest congrats to these very lovely ladies, I am so happy and excited for all of you!! 🙂

I just wanted to send out a little update that I’m alive and well, and very much rotund these days.  It doesn’t stop me from ‘racing’ B to our doorstep or when we’re about to climb the gym stairs to the second floor (competitive much?  though at least he ‘lets’ me win sometimes (though I think it’s because he is amused by my waddle)), but things are definitely getting a bit harder physically.  I don’t know what’s my favorite, but I’d have to say it’s a tie between having to do dishes with outstretched arms, mouth breathing more often than not, having perpetual crumbs on top of my belly after every meal and snack, and not being able to close windows when there’s a counter in front of it. 😉  Despite all of this, I absolutely cannot wait to meet the little tyke, and am so excited that I can soon begin the single digit weekly countdown until delivery day!

For the most part, we’ve been ‘nesting’, both physically, mentally/emotionally, and financially.  Physically, we’ve resolved that we’re going to keep the crib (that my parents generously bought for us and that we B assembled last night) in the guest room since we will hopefully find our ‘forever’ home in the next year or so.  We’re starting to get baby stuff here and there and, combined with some awesome hand-me-downs, things are starting to get more real!  Flash will be getting bombarded with so much love on all fronts, from parents to our siblings to friends to my coworkers to obviously us – he’s going to be one loved fellow! 🙂

Mentally/emotionally, we’re also starting to take baby classes, like baby CPR, baby basics, and what to expect during delivery.  Not going to lie, when we did the tour of the hospital and stepped into the labor/delivery room, I had a “oh crap, this baby’s gotta come outta me someday!” moment and freaked the heck out.  I think the class on what to expect will be helpful, but I’ve definitely hounded/interviewed all of my friends and coworkers and asked about their experiences just so I can get an idea of the range of possibilities out there.  Emotionally, I feel the least prepared, what with my concerns on when to come back from maternity leave since I just started my new job, as well as feelings of being a competent mom in general.  I just hope I do this kid right and not let him down!

Financially, B and I have, for now, figured out which day care we’re going with, which is a great peace of mind.  We decided on a ‘corporate’ one versus home, admittedly from my own biases (less chance of any TV being there, there’s often a security gate/code, there’s a 4-1 ratio with infants only as opposed to 6-1 of all ages at home, etc.), but the ones near my work are way more costly (average $410/week) versus his work (about $260-$350/week).  Since the daycares and reviews were pretty comparable, we’ve ultimately decided to go with the latter.  This is a bit challenging for me since I’m used to taking care of things (and okay, like having things my way) and have always envisioned of me dropping off/picking up the little tyke, but as Elsa in “Frozen” sings, I just have to “let it go… let it go…” (ha!, my mantra for a lot of things lately) because I know I’ll have to be more reliant on B (plus, he’s my partner and I know will make such a great dad, so I know it’s my mentality that I have to fix).

We’re also getting our finance-related documents in order, from budgets, wills and trusts, and life insurance (also supplemental disability, though I’d obvi have to wait until after I give birth).  I’ve admittedly only figured out now the difference between life insurance policies (i.e., terms versus variable, at least), but am curious – if you have it, what did you end up going with (or is this too personal to ask?  My manners have all but gone out the window lately so I’ll still ask :))?  Both seem to have pro’s and con’s to them, though variable seems a bit more appealing since it feels like at least there’s this little ‘pot of money’ that I’m putting money into versus term that just goes away if not used (at least, we hope that it won’t be used and that we both live a very long life!).  However, I do realize that if term is more reasonably priced, and that we could just save and have said ‘pot of money’, anyway, so there’s that.  His finance planner is creating the different types of scenarios for us, so I suppose we can make a decision then based on some actual figures.  If you have any advice on it, though, I would love to hear it!

Anyway, that’s been going on in my corner of the earth!  I hope you are doing extremely well and keeping healthy, and that even more amazing life experiences and events happen to all of you! 🙂

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Financial pre-nesting? And Week 6 spending

I went with my bf, B, to his friend’s Super Bowl party, and a couple of people there came with their little ones.  When we got home, I told B, “Babe, I want a baby in a few years” and he responded with “That long??”

His response was exciting absolutely terrifying.

I do admit in the back of my mind, that my mission to get rid of my debt primarily lies in wanting to pop out a couple of kids sooner than later.  Mentally, though it would be a bummer to put travel on the back burner and to go on a “running sabbatical” for a bit, I think I’m fairly ready for this next step, and I feel he is probably more so since he’s a few years older than me.  Physically, I’m at a healthy weight, say no to drugs and smoking, and goodness knows I have some child-bearing hips, so that’s hopefully all good.  But financially, I just really want to get my sh!t together before bringing life into this world (well, and going into a marriage, since he’s responsible and only has a mortgage to deal with).  With the high costs of “start up” items like furniture, strollers, clothes (though I’m all for hand me downs or buying gently used furniture), and especially child care, I don’t want to deal with this debt before going into this next stage since I’ll have plenty more to deal with!  Plus, I want opportunities for them that I didn’t have, like signing up for sports or learning to play instruments.  And, ultimately, I don’t want to pass on the habit of accumulating debt, but rather teach future kids fiscal/personal responsibility early on.

So, I hope am determined to get rid of this debt this year – I kinda wish I had this stuff figured out earlier, just so I could have some extra time to really build up my savings.  But, it is what it is and though I’m pushing it off this year (well, and because he can talk kids all he wants, but I’d like to not make my very Catholic grandma and mom cry so homie needs to put a ring on it ;)), I do realize my clock is fairly ticking.  If pregnant women go in a nesting stage with their surroundings right before they give birth, I guess this is financial pre-nesting for me.

February expenses so far (I didn’t think it was particularly interesting to itemize anymore, though I am recording purchases as soon as I do so.  So instead, I’m just going to focus on the groceries/gas/going out and personal care budgets since those I have trouble with keeping in check):

1) Groceries/gas/going out: $201.47/$600 allocated

2) Personal care: $75/$100 allocated

Harry at Your PF Pro also gave me a great tip last week about AAA offering free credit monitoring service in lieu of the $13/mo service I’ve been using.  I’ve been an AAA member for years, so I quickly ditched the paid service and saved $156 this year (since I already paid for January).  His articles are super informative and a bit ahead of my knowledge level, but hopefully in a year’s time things will gel and make more sense.  Regardless, thanks Harry!

Speaking of credit scores, I thought this article by Club Thrifty was an interesting read.  I still want to monitor my scores closely since we’ll probably get a house loan in the next few years, but I do agree with the premise of the post.  And while  you’re there, this thoughtful confessional is completely adorable.