Working Moms

WM with larger family?

Does anyone here work full time and have 3 or 4 kids? We just started trying for #3. I work full-time (7.25 hours per day) M-F, DH and I both have "cushier" jobs with lots of vacation and sick days and daycare costs are not a factor given our income. I would like to go back to work when baby is 4 months old and then we might try for a fourth...I'm sure I do not want to be a SAHM. Just wondering if working moms of 3 or 4 exist...they seem hard to come by where I'm from but most moms here stay home at least part time.

Re: WM with larger family?

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    Hi! I'm a working mom with 3 kids ages 3 and under! I have been wondering the same as you. We would like four kids but I have been wondering if I can do it and still work full-time. Our situation is almost the same as yours except I work 8 hours a day four days a week and then I have a flex day where I usually have to go to work at least half day. We also have pretty flexible jobs with a lot of vacation and sick days and high income. I think we are going to go for the fourth but we might wait a while. Three ages three and under is kicking my butt a little bit :)
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    I am a WM with 3 kids -mine are spaced out though (10,5,2) My job allows for a lot of flexibility and I have tons of vacation due to length of service. Being able to work from home one day a week has saved my sanity and we outsource lawn mowing and house cleaning. I work with someone who has 4 kids - she is a senior level person so her work load is pretty intense. I know they ended up getting a nanny for ease - to watch kids at home after school and the younger ones during the day.

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    We're about to have baby #2 and we'd both love a third, but for us it's the cost of daycare that makes it a bad option. DC and preschool in my area is ~16K/year for the first two years, then ~12-14K until Kindergarten. I think that's why it's rare to see families where both parents work with more than 2 or 3 kids - you'd have to space them out to keep costs reasonable (for a middle-class income) or get super lucky with a good nanny. I know some working moms who have 3-5 kids, but their families all have incomes out of what I would consider middle-class (200K+/year).
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    We have three. Probably will stop here. Theoretically I would like a fourth but I'm not sure. My limitation is not event hat we pay (what seems like) a bazillion dollars for childcare, but that I just don't feel like I have enough hours in the week. And as I foresee more activities and such it will only get more hectic.
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    I'm not but I have 3 friends who have 3 kids and are working.

    Friend 1- she's a teacher.  Her DH works long hours and has a more demanding (timewise) job.  So her career makes it easy for them to balance the 3 kids.  Plus, they also have a lot of family support in the area.

    Friend 2 - Her DH is in real estate and they seem to work it where he pretty much works only at night and on the weekends.  He's always home to put their oldest on the bus, take the other to preschool, etc.  They also have family support.

    Friend 3- both are attorney's.  When the kids were young, her aunt lived with them.  Now that they are older and all in school, no live in help.  But - both of their jobs are reasonably flexible that one of them is usually home in the afternoon.  And, as with the others, they have a lot of family help too. 
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    I have a coworker who has 4 and she uses live-in au pairs for childcare.  I think that is key to her being able to work FT, because even though our workplace is pretty flexible it's still just a lot of logistics to manage every day with 4 kids.  The au pair can pick up and drop off different kids at different times a lot more easily than a working parent ever could.
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    I am a WM with 3 daughters- ages 15, 6 and almost 2. We are a blended family as H and I both came in to the marriage with a daughter and then had our youngest together. We are lucky in the sense that I have very flexible hours and only work a half day on Wednesday. H works from home three days a week and teaches adjunct during the evening, so between our two schedules, we need very little childcare. Plus, the two oldest are in school all day- I can't even imagine the cost of childcare if our girls were closer in age. If daycare cost is not an issue, then I say go for it. It can be challenging balancing work and family, but I wouldn't change anything. 
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    alli2672alli2672 member
    edited October 2014

    I am working FT with 4 kids ages 6,5,2, and 4 mos.  I have a good income ($200k/yr) in a LCOL area, and I use a lot of my income to hire help.  My family makes fun of me for it, but whatever.    

    I have a housekeeper 20 hours/wk who does 90% of the cooking, cleaning, and errands.  
    Lawn maintenance guy who does all of the mowing, cleaning up flower beds, tree trimming, gutter cleaning, etc.
    Aupair (although I may switch to a live-out nanny...I love her, but it is a lot of work to have a teenager living in your house.)
    Preschool for my 5 y/o, activities for everyone but the infant
    General handyman guy who does the sprinklers, plows in the winter, and does a few other things around the house.
    Great frieinds who also have large families and like to swap out childcare. 

    There is also a dynamic in our house that the older kids help/encourage the younger kids (although the youngest is still an infant).  It is tough sometimes coordinating sports, and I do a lot of things like reading stories to my 2 y/o and 4 y/o while my 6 y/o is playing flag football. 

    I don't think it's for everyone, but I love having a larger family.   

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    Also, whatever happened to MammaBear (I think that was her screen name)? Didn't she have 6 close in age?

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    I am an anomaly - I have triplets but still counts as 3! I have a live-out full-time nanny. Both DH and I have pretty demanding jobs. The only extra help we have is a bi-weekly housekeeper. I basically manage everything else. It's doable.
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    I have 4 kids- 6,4 and 5 month old twins. Dd is in first grade, DS is in preschool and the twins are at DC. It is a juggling act, but we manage :). DH and I both have flexibility in different ways. DS also has a second job on some nights and weekends. I am alone a lot during the winters but my parents and my aunt are a ton of help!
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    We have three - 10, 7 and 2. Blended family, too, so two stepkids 19 and 15. I could not work FT and juggle 4-5 kids' schedules. Summer when the skids were younger almost killed me. Three is totally viable, you just have to be organized. I permit two activities per child (1 sport and scouts is how it has stacked up here) plus however many additional activities are adjacent to school hours (like chess or cooking or golf or ballet at school) because they don't require me to drive.

    Biggest sanity saver for me has been we did a full mud room this summer with a large shelf for each child and a chicken wire frame for each child with clothespins. I now categorically know where the library books/forms/school project rubrics/calendars/invites/shoes/coats/etc. are.

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    I have four right now, ages 8, 5, 3 and 2 and am pregnant with my fifth.  My husband and I both work full-time, although as a college professor, he is home more often than I am.  I think the flexibility he has with his job is a huge help to us.  My job has some flexibility, but not nearly as much, but at least I work pretty standard hours and not some crazy 60 hours a week or anything.

    I always wanted a large family and it is fun and crazy most of the time but there are times when it's a little overwhelming just with all the logistics.  I actually think having young kids is a bit easier than school-age because that's when they start getting involved in more activities and each kid has to be at a different place at the same time and there's things like half-days at school and then I have to figure out childcare for those days and then there's a lot of little stuff like who needs a lunch today, who is supposed to bring in a a treat this week, etc.  I've had to get a lot more organized!

    We do have help in the form of a house cleaner and then some family will sometimes do little things to help out but we're not in a position to hire full-time help, although I imagine that would be nice, it's still doable without.

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    I have 3 (5.5, almost 3, almost 1) and I'm a physician working 4 days/week mostly 8-5 but some 12hr shifts and every 7 weeks I'm also on call 24hrs 7 days in a row. We just moved after I got out of the military so dh has been home since may but starts teaching 2 days/week in January at a perfect job for him. Without his help I could not do it since I have some days when I am certainly not reliable and while I take the oldest to school I couldn't do pick up also without using daycare. We live in a rural area so an aupair is not an option. I actually want a 4th, dh does not, though I hope in the back of my mind that one he's not sahd 2 days a week and since I'm generally home 2-3 of the other days a week that he'll change his mind!
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    alli2672 said:

    Also, whatever happened to MammaBear (I think that was her screen name)? Didn't she have 6 close in age?

    Haven't seen her in a while, yes she has 6. Probably as busy as I am. WM of 5, ages 4-17. FT hours plus a city commute. And sports. And stuff. It is on my wishlist to get someone in to do housecleaning and laundry once a week, but then I'd miss catching up on my shows late at night.  :D
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    We've been toying with the idea of three kids, and I work full-time. I don't think I want to stay home at this point, so it would be three in daycare fairly close in age. DH thinks he's done but would have a third if I pushed the issue. I'm approaching 35, so if we were going to do it, it'd be within the next year or so. I'm waffling because while we have a good income, daycare would eat us alive. We love to travel, so we'd be resetting the clock again on when we could do some of that again as well.
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    I am a WM of three boys (13, 4, and 2). Both DH and I work full time while the two oldest are in school and the baby stays with my MIL during the day. I work 40 hours per week and DH sometimes works more than that but we both have weekends off. The key to making life easy is getting things like laundry and cleaning done during the week. It's not easy but it can be done.
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    MammaBear81MammaBear81 member
    edited November 2014
    alli2672 said:

    Also, whatever happened to MammaBear (I think that was her screen name)? Didn't she have 6 close in age?

    Haven't seen her in a while, yes she has 6. Probably as busy as I am. WM of 5, ages 4-17. FT hours plus a city commute. And sports. And stuff. It is on my wishlist to get someone in to do housecleaning and laundry once a week, but then I'd miss catching up on my shows late at night.  :D
    I do have 6, my oldest is 9 no twins.  It's great for us, but I agree it isn't for everyone.  DH and I both work, but I work days, and he works nights.  We have an au pair which is the most affordable and convenient child care there is for large families (in my opinion of course).  We do not make a ton of money (both of us together are just over 100K per year) but we do not have any debt and live within our means, which is just about as rare as having a large family and not being a SAH mom.  We plan ahead a lot and are organized (yes some days the sh!t hits the fan but preparing helps a lot). 
    Someone else mentioned cubbies, and looking like a daycare center, that is pretty accurate, because that is the easiest way to keep 4+ kids organized without going crazy.  The kids (and adults) learn where there stuff goes, and by standing by the motto "don't put it down put it away" we manage to keep things going.  They have their own coat hook, back pack hook, shoe cubby and clothes bin (to put the next days clothes in each night).   Now that I have a few in school they have a bin to put all their work in (so it isn't all over the dining room table) and I go through it each night to make sure I get to see all their work and flyers that come home.

    I haven't  been around much because my BMB moved to FB and it is soooo much easier to post.   I do miss being over here, maybe I'll pop by more often :).

    ETA: I do laundry on the weekends, wash Friday and Saturday, sort and put away on Sunday.  We try to keep the house clean so it is easier to maintain but every now and then we take a weekend and do an overhaul (get rid of old stuff, broken toys etc) and start fresh.
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    (Lurking) I left my job in spring, when our third was 15 months old. At the time, we thought three was probably it, but I am now pregnant with number 4! You can certainly do it, but personally, I felt it wouldn't be possible without a really good nanny. It was getting harder and harder for us and it would have been really difficult this year with DS in preschool and DD1 starting kindergarten. DH and I were both at least 1/2 hour away from home, and I increasingly wanted or needed to do things that meant missing work. Due to the nature of DH's job I was almost always the one to handle doctor appts, sick days, school events, etc. He is also often gone weekends so I was solo on many weekends handling all the errands, which got to be a lot. I AM happy to be a SAHM for now, so for us, this is great. But if you love your job and have the income for a great nanny, no reason it can't work for you. 

    I vote nanny (or au pair) b/c the logistics are SOOO much easier. You have someone to help with laundry, be there for repair people, start the crock pot, do small household tasks, and be home when your older ones get home from school so that they don't have to go to after care/get picked up at a certain time. Ideally also someone who can be flexible if you need early or late coverage.  A nanny can even take your other kids to activities if you have a really good one. Our nanny wasn't at the level we'd have needed if I were to have continued working. We probably would have had to increase what we were paying quite a bit, but if we both wanted to continue working it would have been possible. Without a nanny, the juggling would have been too much for me personally. 
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