My family seems to be running around without stopping most of the week. Enrichment classes, school work, errands, field trips, even violin lessons. But I try to make sure we exercise all the time. There is an old saying about if the parents read in a household than so will the children. Well, the same goes for exercise.
I’m not sure about most single parents but if you are like me, you are living month-to-month and barely have anything saved (if anything). I do not really have a ‘nest egg’ for myself or children at all. I keep thinking that THAT will happen when I am remarried (when ever that will happen, considering I am single and not even dating anyone right now) and I have most of the same bills (mainly mortgage and utilities) and a dual-income.
When I think of a nest egg, I can see meaning many different things. Money to be set away for emergencies like unemployment, a disability, exceptionally large auto or hospital bill, etc. I can also see a nest egg as money that I should have for when I am old and want to retire and can no longer work, or no longer want to work. Part of that would be some type of retirement money, like a 504 plan or long-term investments. Finally, I think of a nest egg as money that should be saved ‘just in case.’ I have heard that it is a great plan for people to have three months of their average monthly income in savings.
For me, as a single parent, I have a two main assets my house and my car and a small amount of money saved in an ING account. I also have some money saved (no not even close to enough) for my children for college.
All of this is something that I need to do soon, now, in the present. Everyone says the future isn’t certain, but it is certain that if someone is broke their whole like that they shouldn’t be expecting a miracle when they are old and want to retire.
All of this I need to start on now. It really comes down to saving more money, budgeting more and spending less. Sounds easy, right?
My year-end goal is to have that three-month egg nest. With my 2012 tax return I want to pay off my two (and only two) credit cards that I own. After that….? Savings for my retirement, childrens’ college and maybe a small fund for a family vacation.
The definition of a nest egg might mean different things to each of us but it all is really about how much money we have set aside.
It isn’t easy being a single parent but ignoring the future isn’t going to make it go away.