Friday, September 12, 2008

THE talk

So last night with all the running around with hubby I finally managed to get some baby talk out of him. I basically explained what I was thinking:
- maternity leave for a year is going to leave us with about $1500 a month less than we make now (at least)
- Buying baby cribs and playpens etc will be a huge lump sum hit before the baby, not to mention maternity clothes and diapers etc as more of an ongoing expense through the next while.
- Not having the basement finished means there will be no spare room or spare bathroom which we might want with a baby, not just for guests, but I doubt we'll both sleep comfortably in our double bed (yes double) with me 9 months pregnant.
- I can rein in my spending on groceries as well as clothes and frivolties (I spend $400 a month and have nothing to show for it, I can easily get this to $100 with some focus)
- I want hubby to rein in his spending SIGNIFICANTLY wherever it's easiest for him. He's probably got about $600 or $700 a month on his frivolous spending, his hockey/ball, and booze and eating out.
- If we both rein our spending in that much we can start putting that extra $700-800 a month away and build up a nice nest egg that should help cover the big lump sum costs and probably carry over to help during the mat leave income cut. (basically I want to get used to spending $1500 a month less so it's like nothing when mat leave comes).
- but at the same time I want to have a baby so I want to make all this work

His thoughts were:
- He thinks the basement can be done before we have a kid
- We also already have a big chunk of change that's supposed to be for investing and for the basement ($30,000) that we could tap into for baby.
- And also have a smaller chunk of change already build up in our savings for, well just savings (emergency fund etc).
- He thinks he can cut down his booze spending (by no given number) and get his frivolous down to $300 a month
- I don't know if he wants to...
- He wants to push off the baby stuff until he's got more of the basement finished
- He wants to talk again in 2 months to see where he's at with the basement and money
- He doesn't like having more than 1 thing on his plate so doesn't want to think about baby stuff when he's trying to focus on the basement.

That last point frustrates me a bit. Granted hubby really, really doesn't do well with stress. He ALWAYS feels super busy and stressed out and that there's too much going on, but it's just life. He gets it from his mom. She's always like "OMG things are so tough for me right now" oh why? Because she has to go to work AND make supper every day this week plus her daughter is getting married in 2 months. Like I just don't see it. But hubby's like this too. He is stressed that the basement needs to be finished. If there was a looming deadline that we weren't going to make I could see it. But when the basement is finished there will be something else going on. it's life. There are things that you always have to do. But he doesn't remember that and thinks that when he gets this one thing done things will be easy. He doesn't remember that we'll have to paint the deck and fence next summer. Not to mention probably buy a new vehicle sometime. Plus maybe then we'll want to paint inside our house. Then in a few years maybe buy new carpet. There's always some big task going on. He even forgets that with daily or weekly things. Like once I'm done the dishes and laundry there's finally going to be some time. Except you have to do dishes again the next day. And laundry again the next week. Anyway I've talked about that before how I just don't get "stress" in him.

But to counter his points, I don't want to dip into our big money. That's mortgaged money when we redid our mortgage. It seems ridiculous to use it for anything except going back into the house or investing and getting a better return than we're paying. Yes we've got our small lump sum and that makes me feel better. (like $3000 so far?) Plus he pointed out that Christmas bonuses can go toward baby stuff and things like that. He also can talk a big game about how he's gonna stop spending so much money, but it's hard for him once he's used to it. If we want it to stick we'll have to set up an automatic withdrawl every month for baby savings. He's really really good at paying bills, but not saving. So payment plans work for him. As for waiting 2 months and then talking about it, that sort of upset me when he said it, but when I think about it, that's only like a few weeks longer than I was thinking. He was thinking we'd start trying around Christmas, but he also didn't remember that it might not happen as soon as we start trying (I heard the average was 4 months but I also know people who it was like a year).

I was upset yesterday a bit after talking to him, since I had already hyped myself up about it. I often do this, think about something for a long time (I first posted about it in May I think) and plan it but never get around to talking to hubby about it, yet think I did and that we're on the same page, and then get upset when we're not. But when I think about it, we're only 1 page apart, (or a couple months) so it could be a lot worse. Plus he also wants to get the basement done pronto so we can still have an office and spare room when baby comes. (having never finished a basement on our own before we don't know if it could be done in 9 months of working evenings and weekends, that is when he's not too tired or has other plans).

The other thing that's sort of tripping us up is our car. We've got the new Envoy SUV which is good for baby seats and the dog and everything. Good warrantee etc. But we've also got our baby, the sports car Celica. Which has no air conditioning, and that also affects the defrost I found out (it still works, but when you turn defrost on, it turns AC on, and that will stall the car unless you're going above 40. you only have to wait 1 second after turning defrost on and then push AC and turn it off but still right?) So we're thinking of getting rid of that. It really isn't family friendly anyway. But we could wait until the spring (I can deal with the defrost thing over winter) then get rid of it, but we were sort of thinking of doing that in the winter when people won't care so much if you say the AC doesn't work.) And then when we sell it we'd need another vehicle, we could get a good on gas commuter car for me, but that's another car payment (the car is paid off) which would drop our money even lower right? Or we could get a junker truck for hubby to drive to work (paid in full with the car money). But it's just another thing right? Arg. He thought we could be a 1 vehicle family but I don't know if I could stand being stuck at home with no option of driving anywhere while on mat leave. I couldn't go to baby and mommy classes or get groceries or go to doctor appointments with out him then.

Anyway where it sits now, we're going to talk again after the wedding. Meanwhile I at least am going to really tighten my spending belt. I think hubby is going to as well. Plus starting probably next week, maybe after, we're getting really serious about the basement (as in I am cleaning out boxes and getting rid of stuff, hubby is going to continue insulating etc). I am ok with this.


paige said...

I feel your pain. My husband and I were back and forth with priorities and when to start a family (I had really wanted to have a baby). Unfortunately it didn't end so well with me. He made every excuse to put it off and then he finally just told me that he doesn't want to be a Dad. I was devastaed at first but I decided it wasn't a deal breaker and I have given up on the baby thing.
At least you rhusband is being up front and honest that he wants to get stuff done first. Good on you for opening the lines of communication too.
Great blog BTW!

Jen said...

I am pretty much in the same boat...I think Danny is scared of becoming a Dad because he doesn't know what it's going to be like and he buckles under pressure...

Its easy-ish to cut back on spending if you want to...and right now it seems your want is bigger than his...but that doesn't mean you should give up on it!!!

If he uses the excuse that there is always something on the go...well he needs to get used to it...such is life, there will ALWAYS be something that needs to be done!!!

I figure I will start trying in the new until then...and then you still have 9 months to save some money (though not good to rely on that in case of being bed ridden or something)...

ANYWAY, it CAN be done...and time isn't exactly running short, but I know that I don't want to be an "old mom"...AND I want my kids to possibly be done college (unless they are doing a PhD or something) by the time I am going to retire...there is so much to think about!!! I agree, wait till after the all seems scary but it doesn't have to be!!!

thenewsarahsundae said...

Well it sounds like you are on the right track with planning and all. I know what you are feeling because I've been wanting to have a baby for a few years now.

Best of long and I know when the time is right you will get pregnant.

smellyshelley said...

Wow, I never put that much thought and planning into having my kids...sounds like you guys are pretty close though in your timing so I wouldn't sweat you get disability pay at all in Canada when you are on maternity leave? It sounds like you guys have a bit of a cushion on the income side.

Kids always have a way of putting a curve ball into your just keep that in mind. Usually things work out though, whether you planned for it or not.

and I got pregnant the first try - 2 out of 3 kids - so it may happen quicker than you think.

Sagan said...

Wow, that's gotta be really tough to try to deal with... all of that.

I really like that idea of talking about it again in a couple months. That also gives you a couple months to ease into doing some of those things you want to do (such as cut down on spending), and see what's realistic for both of you and what's not. Good for you for bringing up the talk- communication is so important!

MizFit said...

I feel it as well.

felt it. ALL OF IT.

the fear----but we plunged in anyway :)


Angie All The Way said...

I am impressed with how well you sorted out both yours and hubby's points of view and managed to draw a timeline parallel as to where you both are thinking about being parents! I think that's awesome ;-)

Basement refinish is a big project that's for sure. As far as money goes, it sounds like you're doing really well so far and you'd be surprised how much money you can save being a mom. I plan on hitting up all the yard sales etc. for clothes and such and I know that you are the kind of person that will find ways to save on that kind of stuff. Yeah, there will be some big initial purchases that you mentioned with the crib etc., but maybe your family could all go in on one big thing for you guys and that would save some big initial bucks.

I can't believe how many of us are thinking along these baby lines!!! It's exciting to me!