Breadwinner Relay

Mike and I have switched or shared the role of breadwinner so many times we can barely keep up.  Right now I’m bringing home the bacon.  Last year at this time he was.  The year before we both were (yep, we had about the same salary).  We’ve both tried self-employment before and with each other with mixed results. While neither one of us particularly enjoys it, for the past six years at least one of us has been ‘out in the workforce’  in order to support the family.   We both agree that having one person staying at home works for our household.  Anyone who has/had kids knows the challenges of conflicting work and kid schedules.

Mike was laid off this past March so he has been playing the stay at home role.  Currently I work just under full-time, 4 days a week.   Having that extra day to do my own things helps me keep my life balanced.

Mike is a super-duper-uber stay-at-home dad.  He’s on the go: fixing things, working on the garden and cooking up a storm.  Best of all there’s always a glass of wine waiting for me at 6pm.  He puts me to shame.  If we were interviewing for the job he’d be the best candidate.  Years ago I lobbied for him to not go back to work and let me be the main breadwinner.

Mike: I used to feel a lot of stress about needing to provide for the family.  I felt that if I wasn’t earning money I wasn’t contributing so I always had mixed feelings about being the stay at home parent.  Now I really like it.

Molly: What do you think changed your mind?

Mike:  Part of it is that our finances are in better shape so I’m not worried about going into debt right now.  The other part is that I’ve finally realized that I don’t need to cling to the traditional notion that the only viable way to make money is to ‘go get a job.’  Now I know that I need to be more creative in my approach to earning money.

Molly: I’ve always been proud of the fact that I could go out and earn a good living.  Even when I was working as an artist I always had my stable day job.  After my stint at stay-at-home mom last summer I was resistant to going back to work.  In the past I didn’t enjoy being the chauffeur, maid and cook.  That’s how I looked at it- a bunch of drudgery.  My perspective is not so simplistic now.  Often car rides are times for the kids to download their day.  Both girls will give up information that otherwise would have not been shared sitting around the dinner table.  Last summer I pushed myself into the uncharted territory of cooking.  It wasn’t bad.  I can now roast a chicken!

Mike:  It’s true, Molly has actually come into the kitchen lately for more than just to grab a snack.  I’m particularly happy that she has perfected the chocolate chip cookie.

After returning to work a year ago I realized that my perspective had changed.   I’d been feeling the pull towards self employment again.  The big question floating around the house for the past nine months has been “What can we do to earn money that is interesting, pushes us creatively and is flexible enough to accommodate our shifting interests?”  One night after turning this question over for the thousandth time it came to me!  Mike and I need to combine forces and roll our blogs into one comprehensive site that covers everything that we do.   Mike and Molly’s House was born!

Mike:  I was skeptical at first about actually making money from blogging but over the course of building the site this Summer I’ve felt the pull towards full time blogging.  I’ve always been looking for a way to pursue my many varied interests and this seems like the perfect venue.  Now I can’t start a project without a camera in my hand.   It was a tall order to build a totally custom site but we got there.  The next challenge will be learning about how to monetize it.  One of the blogs we’re drawing inspiration from is Budgeting in the Fun Stuff where Crystal wrote recently about how she is now making more money than her husband.

What’s next?

We want to make money from this blog.  It may only be a trickle at first but one of our goals is to earn enough money from Mike and Molly’s House to support us.  Not a small goal indeed but one we’re confident that we can accomplish.


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