Financial Planning, Budgeting, Saving. This is what works for our Large Family.
Any advice for me? My oldest daughter is going to attend a local secular college in the fall.She did get into three private Catholic colleges but even after some financial awards given from the colleges we decided that going into financial debt to attend collage was a bad idea. My daughter is very practical and is eager to save money. She is also a very lovely young lady,devoted to her younger brothers and sisters and very pious. She has recently been told by friends that she will lose her soul at a secular college. You and your wife have already guided some of your children through secular colleges. Any advice You can share would be helpful. Also. I don't think my daughter will lose her faith or her soul at this college. I'm just getting a little tired hearing that the only way she will grow in holiness,foster a possible vocation or meet a holy spouse is by attending certain colleges.
Kathy,Thankfully we don’t have people giving us a hard time about secular schools (anymore). Maybe because we have 3 that have graduated and they haven’t turned into pot-smoking heathens. And we have two currently in college and one in grad school.First thing, as you already know, is to pray for them and the friends they will meet and future spouse (if that is there vocation).2 of my kids went/go to a state school that has an awesome catholic ministry on campus and a great priest. That helps a lot. The other schools my kids attended did not have much of a campus ministry but they made it through fine anyway. They went to mass each Sunday and made it through.Recently my kids, and their friends that go to catholic schools, have commented how going to a secular college better prepared them for life. They had to learn to make the Faith their own and how to defend it. This was a nice confirmation of our decision.With our oldest, we too looked at catholic schools. Even after aid/scholarship money it was still going to be $30,000+ per year. Our state schools are $18,000 if you live there and under $10,000 if you commute. And that is before financial aid and scholarship money. Most of my kids pay half or less than full price. Plus all our kids have gone to community college for 2 years first. This worked out great. It was less than $3,000 (some went for free) and it gave them 2 more years to live at home (saving money and helping them to mature).There are plenty of ways to meet future spouses besides Catholic schools. Besides most of my friends that went to Catholic colleges are dorks…just kidding guys…kinda…I admit it is a scary at times. Our kids are homeschooled their whole lives and then start attending college at age 16 or 17. But so far so good.I’ll ask Mrs Sardonic to add anything I might have missed.
Hi Mr. Sardonic Catholic Dad - I read about your remarkable family in the Washington Post. May you all continued to be blessed with success in the material and the spiritual!We are an Orthodox Jewish family living in Israel, four beautiful kids, thank God. My husband is our primary bread-winner as computer programmer and I do some English teaching, and am looking to build up my income. I have had the goal for him of Early Retirement since we got married, as he is a very talented Talmudic scholar and teacher - he is on board in concept, but skeptical about us being able to accomplish this goal.We pay off our mortgage in another ten years, which will free up a good chunk of monthly income.My specific question is about your day-to-day life. The article said you "live simply," went on a grocery shopping trip with you, and focused on education expenses. Do you get things like music classes for your kids? How do you handle things like family vacations? The article pointed out all the things you DO buy, to show you undeprived you are, but there must be a lot you are doing differently to be able to pull of what you're accomplishing financially. Thanks for any info or suggestions.Rachel Hershberg, Beit Shemesh, Israel
Rachel, good morning or evening as the case may be. Thank you for the kind comments. Our kids do a fair amount of activities: sports, piano lessons, summer camps etc. But they are all local and we try to find good deals. We take the winter off from all activities, which saves money but more importantly saves a lot of time. Running kids here and there really adds up.We go to the beach each summer for a week. It’s a few hours drive from here. We rent an old beach house a few blocks off the beach. Since we homeschool we go “off-season” either at the beginning of the summer or end of the summer, when rents are cheaper. We always try and find the best deals we can on everyday items. My wife likes to shop at thrift stores and garage sales. We have a good selection of grocery stores in our town, so that helps a lot with food cost. We do as much home and car repairs as my skills allow.
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