10 Things I Want to Do Before I Have Kids

10 Things Before Kids

I just turned 27 last month, and the conversations about when Joshua and I plan to start to a family are becoming more frequent. I really got to thinking about why we haven’t started, and what it all comes down to is I’m just not ready… yet. Don’t get me wrong, I do want to be mom; however there are definitely some things I want to accomplish first, not just for myself, but as a way to set an example and inspire my future children as well.

1. I want to be married.
Oh hey, we're married!

This is kind of a given. “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage.” Not only do I want to be married, but I want that marriage to be healthy. Not only is a healthy marriage good for us, but it’ll be good for our future kids.

2. I want to to graduate college with my bachelor’s degree.
I graduated

It was important to me to finish college, not only for myself but to set an example for my future children. I worked really hard and was very fortunate to get the degree in the exact field that I wanted and it lead into a job right out of college. I didn’t want to be in the middle of college and be distracted with kids, because I know when I become a parent my life is going to be 100% devoted to them.

I also want to enjoy my life for awhile. I’ve spent the majority of it in school, and for the first time in 17+ years, I don’t have to worry about projects or homework or going to class. It’s wonderful to be able to go to work, come home, and not have to worry about anything else.

3. I want to have a stable full-time job.
Me at the DG booth for Cal Travel 2012

I want to be able to provide for my future family. I want my future children to see that both their parents can and will provide for them. Plus, children are a permanent expense which both Joshua and I want to be able to afford. 🙂

4. I want Joshua’s Benz to be back on the road.
On the Road!!!

Joshua’s car has been part of our lives from day one, and it has most certainly gone through its ups and downs. It has a lot of sentimental value, and we were bummed that it wasn’t on the road in time to be our drive-away vehicle at our wedding. Luckily it’s back on the road now, and when the time comes for us to start a family it will be there to take me home from the hospital with our future child.

5. I want a vehicle that can easily handle children.
The Benzs

I got my dream vehicle in 2009 – a VW New Beetle. I enjoyed for awhile, but among other reasons, it was time to get serious about a reliable and family-friendly vehicle. I bid the two-door hatchback adieu and said hello to a crossover last year.

6. I want to travel.
Joshua and I are just now getting the opportunity to leave the country for the first time in our lives (we’re going on a Caribbean cruise). I know there are plenty of places we both want to see, and most of those places are easier to visit when it’s just the two of us. Sure, we’ll go on family vacations in the future, but right now we want to enjoy the flexibility of it being just us two.

7. I want to get a few major things done on the house.
We need to save up for a pellet stove as an alternate source of heat in the winter because of high propane costs. We want to replace the carpeting with hardwood flooring to help with cleaning and my allergies. I want to remodel my kitchen. These are things that are way easier to get done now when it’s the two of us instead of having to worry about this plus kids.

8. I want to get to my goal weight.
I’ve been overweight my entire life, and in 2008 I joined Weight Watchers to change all that. The journey hasn’t been easy, and I’ve definitely hit some bumps along the way, the biggest one being I gained a lot of weight when my life became more sedentary (aka desk job). I don’t want to be overweight AND deal with baby weight. I want to get to goal with healthy habits, have a healthy pregnancy, and pass on healthy habits to my kids.

9. I want to be completely debt-free.
Someone once said to me that I will never be ready financially to have children, and it stuck with me. And honestly, I don’t believe that. I believe you can be financially ready for kids if you have a plan. That little voice saying I would never be ready? I’m taking it as a challenge.

Joshua and I are in week 5 of Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, and it has been an amazing journey so far. We’re looking to get all our debt paid off with the exception of our house in the next 18 months or so. We’re learning to be smart with our finances and set good money habits.

I’ve been inspired by not only what I have learned from Dave Ramsey himself but from his daughter Rachel Cruze on money and kids. They have a new book called Smart Money Smart Kids coming out next month which I definitely plan on reading. Not only do I want to have to not worry about money when I have kids, but I also want to be ready to set an example and teach them to be smart about money.

10. I want to be ready.
I know I want to be a mother, and I am really excited for when that happens. I know my family is too! In order for me to give my children the best possible life they can have is to have two parents that are ready to be their parents. Right now, I’m enjoying my life as it is – with no children. Do I want a family someday? Absolutely! … but not right now. I want it to happen when I am ready for it to happen, not when someone else is.

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When people constantly ask me, “When are you having kids?” or pressure me about starting a family I feel like they don’t respect my journey or me for that matter. I dealt with a lot of criticism over the choices I’ve made throughout my life, but overall I feel like I did things “right” – I finished college, got a good job, got married. Waiting until it’s the right time to start a family is okay and should be respected, not rushed. I’ve worked really hard to get where I am today, and I want to be respected for that. 

One Comment

These are all very reasonable things. I support you 100%. In my opinion, however, I do not think anyone is ever really “ready” for kids. There are so many new things that will happen in a person’s life when a child is brought into the world. Unexpected, exciting things. Sometimes I think that it might be better to just jump in and work out the rest as it comes up. We all want our lives to be perfect, but that’s just not the way life works. Anyway have fun exploring and travelling and good luck with accomplishing the remaining points on your list before you two make the choice to have kids.

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