I’ve been itching to create a blog. I love the idea of having a creative outlet for my thoughts, but didn’t want to do just any old blog of personal musings, but something that would actually be useful to people.
There are a lot of things that I am interested in: cooking, science, travel, medicine, parenting…but I’m not an expert on any of those things (doesn’t mean I don’t have opinions on them though)! But one thing I kept coming back to is something that people DO come to me for advice for and something which I feel I am adequately qualified to provide. And that is money management.
However, there are already a ton of resources out there for money management and I wanted to do something that stood out. And that is how I decided to make money management for moms (or really, for families in general) to be my focus.
In this day and age, life has gotten very complicated. The “traditional” family of dad works (and probably manages the money) while mom stays home with the kids is now just a small percentage of what families look like. Women are not only working and contributing to the household financially more than ever, many of them earn more than 50% of the household income (I really hate the term “breadwinner” – it somehow implies that earning money is a contest and that there is a “winner” and “loser” which is just counter-productive and I refuse to use it). They SHOULD be involved in how the family’s money is managed. However, this leads to other problems – for example, many women WANT to stay home but because their families become so dependent on the income they bring home, they can’t.
It is also more important than ever that families are smart about how they manage their money. The press is full of articles warning us that by the time we reach retirement, that there will pretty much be no pension left (not that its that great now, but at least its something). That it costs on average $250,000 to raise a child. All the while people have more debt than ever, there is less job security than ever and economic uncertainty seems to be the new normal. And there is no denying that its true.
Money ends up being a major factor in some of our life’s biggest decisions, such as where to live and how many (if any) children we can afford to have. No wonder that money problems is one of the leading causes of divorce and relationship breakdown, no wonder it causes so much stress.
Proper, or at least, decent, money management has always been important to me. Partially because of the way I was raised to respect money, and partially because I did go to business school and did get that CA/CPA. So I know a lot about it, especially at the business level. But also because my husband and I became parents very young and have had to adjust our parenting/working structure many times to make it work. So far we’ve had times where I worked while my husband was the stay-at-home parent/student, where both of us worked, where he worked outside of the home and I worked from home and to our current situation where he works outside of the home and I stay home. Through trial and error as well as research and planning, over the years I’ve learned a lot about managing my family’s money so that we can be comfortable and secure (though we are by no means “rich”). That, and because we were the first of our friends and family to have kids, we had to figure out a lot of it on our own. We’ve developed budgets, navigated the fun world of maternity leave benefits and made plans for all types of savings goals.
I hope to use this blog to share the experiences that I’ve had, what has worked and what hasn’t, as well as what I’ve learned along the way. However, I know there is a lot more to learn and I know many moms out there have unique money worries or questions, so please let me know what you’d like me to look into and write about!
In the meantime, please excuse the boring look of this blog…its going to be “under construction” for a bit as I figure out how to use all the features. Feel free to leave me constructive criticism on improving it.