Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Choosing a back-to-work or stay-at-home path, and making the most of your decision.

Whether your maternity leave is almost up, or your youngest is going to start preschool this year, going back to work or deciding to be a full time stay-at-home parent can be a big decision.

First, you must consider the pros and cons of each. How much will childcare cost if I go back to work? Can we afford to live on one income? If finances don't come into play, one still must consider which path will be most fulfilling and provide happiness to you and your family.

Compiled below are some resources to help you make the decision, get started pursuing your choice, or help personalize whichever path you take.

MAKING THE DECISION: Get help from this checklist from the "Working Mom vs. Stay-at-Home Mom". Alternatively, have you considered "The Rise of the Stay-at-Home Dad" as outlined in this U.S. News article?
CHOOSING TO STAY AT HOME: Start by reading this "Stay-at-Home-Parents: Overview" from to get a grasp on the many facets of the stay-at-home parent choice, and then visit "4 Things Every Stay-At-Home Mom Should Know" from to read some insightful quotes from other stay-at-home parents.
CHOOSING TO WORK out of the home: Every working parent can benefit from the information in "Creating a Family-Friendly Work Arrangement" from For those of you returning to work after several years, read the Wall Street Journal article titled "Returning to Work After Years at Home" for some helpful tips on getting back in the saddle. Once you're back to work, try these "40 Mom-Tested Tips for Balancing Work and Family" from from members of their Working Moms Message Board.
CHOOSING TO WORK in the home: Although the series was never finished, author Candice Lindemann posted 4 entries of a 5-part series about how to begin a work-at-home career on Amid all the misinformation and work-from-home scams out there, this is a good, honest place to start. See her first, second, third and forth parts here. Next, read through this "Successful Strategies for Working at Home" article from

Whatever your decision, know that you are doing the best that you can for your child and family. Embrace your situation! Have any suggestions or thoughts on the topics above? Leave a comment!

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