Family planning

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When Arthur and I got married, we picked out a […]

The North family in front of our new car!

The North family in front of our new car!

When Arthur and I got married, we picked out a home and transportation to accommodate our future firstborn and us: a 2-bed, 2-bath condo and a Volvo S80. Four years and one baby later, we’re reevaluating our living spaces in anticipation of expanding our brood down the line.
It’s stirred up a lot of questions we dealt with at the beginning of our marriage. Where do we want our family to be based? How many people do we need to fit in there? What kind of amenities do we want and which do we actually need? How can we make the lifestyle we want to give our kids happen? But instead of our family being hypothetical, as it was in 2010, it’s now real.
Having these conversations gets me just as excited and nervous now as it did four years ago. I’m continually reminded how fortunate we are to be creating our dream family together. And even though it wasn’t so long ago, back then we were thinking short-term family plans. We found a place we knew we could be happy (and fit) in for at least five years, and we bought a used car in which we could bring our first baby home. But now we’re married, and our family is a living, breathing, thriving unit that’s only going to grow bigger in the coming years. We need to think long-term this time around. Like, twenty-five years long instead of five.
This next transition brings a lot of new things for us to consider. Instead of debating which Chicago neighborhood to move into, we need to narrow down the suburbs (this time keeping in mind the caliber of schools). Instead of just envisioning Rowan in this space, we need to account for two or more children. With a car, we need to accommodate for a lot more trunk space and at least two kids and a dog.
Another thing I keep in mind is that we will have a toddler under foot while we search, pack, and move. Moving is a stressful experience without kids, so I can only imagine the extra layer of chaos they add to it. And as we get ready to replace our Volvo this summer, we get to experience what it’s like to find a car with a baby in tow (as if car shopping weren’t enough of a chore). Although if I know Rowan, and I think I do, he’ll take all of this in stride much better than his dear mom.

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