Sunday, December 9, 2012

number of kids

Every now and then I get bouts of baby fever. This is intensified by a baby who sleeps through the night (usually) and gives me nothing but smiles first thing in the morning when he wakes. Here's the answer to how many kids Jon and I would like to have:

My response before we had Elden: At least 5-6 (a mix of biological/adopted)
My response after my Virginia got PTSD (be tee dubbs, totes not back to normal in that department still): 1
My response once Elden began sleeping through the night: Maybe 4-5, still a mix of biological/adopted
My response when Elden had those bad nights last week: Yeah, definitely just 1
My response when I see itty bitty babies being born to coworkers and friends that I can give back when they start to cry: 400 babies (gratuitous amounts of energy!)
My response when I think about how broke we are: We shouldn't even be allowed the one we've got

So, in a nutshell to those who have asked, I don't really know how many kids we're going to have/when we will add to our family. If money was no object, I'd say we'd easily attain the 5-6 our hearts initially desired. That being said, we have a strong sense of fiscal responsibility and we don't want to bring tiny people into this world that we can't afford. While we definitely agree with the notion that one can never be "totally financially prepared" for a baby (unless, of course, you are one of the privileged who have money at your disposal), we definitely believe you can have some awareness of your preparedness. For instance, before we started trying to get pregnant with Elden, I made spreadsheet upon spreadsheet of estimated baby expenses. I talked to friends with babies to find out their monthly expenses between diapering and whatnot each month. I even called daycares before we started trying so I knew how much that would be--knowing this would be our greatest expense should we become parents. We crunched the numbers, added these expenses to our budget, and waited until we felt like we would generally be able to financially do this parenting thing on our own without any outside help (barring any major life changes such as me losing my job).

Would we love to have our kids crazy close in age so that 1) they have playmates that they can relate to, even as they age into the dreaded teenage years and 2) we can get the last one out of the house while we're still young enough to enjoy empty nesting (hello marital selfishness). So should we find ourselves in a situation where we have enough money to support two babies in daycare / to feed / to diaper / to pay labor & delivery bills, you bet your face we're going to jump back into the trying to get pregnant bandwagon as fast as we can. That being said, given our current dire financial situation (buying a house was something we had NOT budgeted for when we did our initial baby expense/budget calculations) and Jon still facing likely several years of school ahead, don't count on the addition of Baby Flip Numero Dos in 2013. Should God surprise bless us with another, we will obviously be thrilled and make it work. But we are currently (and plan to continue to) taking preventative measures until we feel financially good and ready!

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