What Were We Thinking?

November 23, 2011

What Were We Thinking

Do you ever have one of those moments in life where you stop dead in your tracks, smack yourself in the forehead, and say “what was I thinking!”

I’m sure we’ve all had moments like that, I think it’s just part of being human. I’ve actually been having that thought more often lately, and it’s all because of a decision my lovely wife made 20 years ago.

Three’s Company

My wife is from a family of three kids and ever since she was a teenager, she’s known that someday she wanted three kids of her own.  I knew this when I married her but I always said we shouldn’t rush into anything. I wanted to take it one kid at a time and see how things went – why commit to three kids when you don’t know if you can handle one, right?

So after having our second kid several years ago, it was decision time.  Could we handle another one?  Did it make sense for us?

After a lot of discussion, debate, and spreadsheets we finally decided that we were cut out to be a three kid family. 

Kids are Sooooo Expensive

Deciding to have that third kid was a big financial decision for us because it really pushed our boundaries in a number of ways. In addition to adding the standard costs of raising a kid (and even more kids costs), we’d also need to get a bigger house and a bigger car to fit our clan.

It would be an understatement to say that we put a lot of time into planning and preparing to grow our family. We’ve basically spent the last two years getting ready – saving money for a new car, selling our house, buying a bigger house, buying a bigger car…..  and now the big day is only a few months away.

Although we’re really excited to meet our little girl, there are times (when our two kids are acting like little heathens) that we look at each other and ask “what were we thinking”? 

Beating Cold Feet

So like any major life decision that’s already been made, we’re occasionally a little apprehensive about the hand we’re holding and how it will play out.  At times like those it’s nice to be able to look back at the reasons why you made your decision (write them down) and the plan you made for making it work (write this down too).

We spent enough time debating our decision and planning out our options that we know exactly why we chose to have another kid and that we can handle it. 

Giving Thanks for Family

This Thanksgiving we’re very thankful for the opportunity to be able to grow our family and that our little bun in the oven is cooking along just like she should!

We’ve started a tradition with our kids called the “Thankful Tree” where we tape a brown paper tree trunk to the side of our fridge at this time of year.  Every night we each write one thing we’re thankful for on a construction paper leaf and tape it to the trunk. 

Watching our kids learn to appreciate life and put their favorite things into words is a great reminder for me of why it’s so awesome to be a parent and makes me very thankful to have kids and to be a part of a family.

I hope that you have a chance to spend time with your family over the holiday (unless they drive you crazy, in which case I hope you get to spend it relaxing in the peace and quiet of your own home).

Happy Thanksgiving!


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Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn't like the other kids... His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he's helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.

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5 Responses to What Were We Thinking?

  • YFS

    Hahaha! Nice family plan made by your wife. But I agree with you that children are really expensive.

  • Steve

    You’ll be fine. I expect that each additional kid is just some sort of hedonic adaptation. We didn’t intend to have more than one, and when #2 came along we actually adapted quite nicely. I think you’ll enjoy spending next Thanksgiving with kid #3, and be happy with the choice you made.

    • Ben

      Thanks for the vote of confidence Steve. I know it will be an adjustment but I think you’re right, we’ll figure it out eventually.

  • Ron

    I hope you have a good thanksgiving. It is so easy to get wrapped up in all of the difficulties and havoc of life, but it is so important to sit back at times and remember just how valuable living is. Enjoy your turkey!