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Being Family

July 14, 2009

Tomorrow is one of those heretofore rare occasions when we have both kids here. It tends to happen most often during the summer, but I think it will likely happen more often in general now that Elder Son is a year-round resident for the first time since stepdaughter came into my life.

I’m hoping we can get the 4.5 of us together for a family portrait, even an informal one.

It’s nice having my husband’s parents so nearby. I think I’m kind of dreading the conversation I want to have with them, but hoping we can come up with a way of their helping with day care on the days I work from home, rather than having two nonfamily daycare providers for the two different locations I work at. My idea is that I establish an office at their place. It actually could work really, really well. They have an outbuilding–a garage with a small, kitchenless efficiency over it–that’s currently a guest bedroom suite, and it’s large enough that I could put an office there without changing out the bedroom part of it.

The only problem is that I could lose the current tax deduction I get for my home office, and paying rent for the space to then write off kind of defeats the purpose. But by the same token, how much would I spend on an in-house day care provider? How much value does face time with grandparents, and easy access to momma’s breast, offer? Priceless, to me.

There are times I also wish my mother were closer. She would volunteer to be the in-house care in a heartbeat, but she’s three hours south of here. At the same time, her house is in no condition to leave kids with her, whereas I have no qualms about leaving the kids with the in-laws if need be.

Lots of things to work out on the practical side; I hate how those pieces get in the way of enjoying the journey. But plain and simple: if I don’t find a solution, I won’t be able to work, and the mortgage is not going to pay itself.

I just wish it wasn’t a 2 hour (one-way) commute for my husband. Killing off our inside-the-beltway housing expense for his weekday crash space there would go a long way toward making ends meet if my income decreases, and then I wouldn’t feel so daunted. On the good side, they recently relocated his office and shaved just enough miles and minutes from the commute that he’s starting to talk more openly about ditching the Annandale place.

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