Mitch has started feeling inspired to give me artistic direction whilst photographing me. For this one he said, "give yourself a double chin and make your arm look like an overstuffed sausage." I think I captured it nicely.
We decided to finally start pretending like this kid is actually going to come out one day, so we picked out paint for the nursery (white), bought fabric to make curtains and rocking chair cushions (orange, lime, and robin's egg blue), and started washing baby clothes. Baby clothes are tiny and cute and have lots of metal things on them that burn your hands when you take them out of the dryer. We also tested our house for radon (negative) and our pipes for lead (negative), mostly because I just took an Environmental Health class and had a few nightmares about a mutant baby. Mitch has also attempted to start bonding with Meatball by yelling into my belly button "Can you hear MEEEEEEE?"
We also started researching college savings plans. Did you know kids are expensive? Somebody should have told us that. Fortunately, I found an online calculator that would help us figure out how much we needed to save every month. Assuming our child goes to an in-state, public university for only four years (estimated average is closer to 5 or 6 years these days), we have to put aside about $350 a month starting like, now.
Sounds reasonable I suppose, so we took a look at our budget to figure out how to make room for the investment. Cut the cable? Oh right, we don't have that. Then we'll cancel the data plan. Yeeeeeah, don't have that either. Okay, cheaper cell phone bill. Nope, already on the cheapest plan that comes with a plain ol' cell phone, plus I get a corporate discount. We live too close to work to make taking the bus economical. Our car is fuel efficient. We don't have gym memberships. Our mortgage is less then a lot of people's rent, and I mix our hand soap myself (costs a quarter a bottle). I even picked up three jars of peanut butter from Freecycle the other day. Because it was free.
We're cutting back on entertainment, groceries, and utilities where we can. And luckily, we have life insurance policies, so if one of us kicks it, Meatball is set. Soooooo...until I'm working full time again (March of 2014?), looks like that's our savings plan. Every time I start to panic about sending our kid to college (or saving more for retirement), I just remind myself that we have some time. One of these days, we won't have to pay for child care, and both of us will hold advanced degrees and better jobs (hopefully). We're getting there. I'm assuming this is where most young families exist: somewhere between prepared and preparing.
In the meantime, we've decided to cut corners by having Mitch paint my toenails until I can reach them again. I figure most people's eyeballs are about five feet away from my toes at any given moment, so they can't tell that it looks like the nail polish was on mist.
|Baby Buster approves.|