Transitioning from a Working Mom to a Stay-at-Home Mom


As I wrote last week, I am leaving my job of eight years. Obviously, this is a major decision, one that I do not take in stride. Though it’s hard not to be elated about changing my life–to pursue happiness outside the confines of a nine-to-five job–there’s a piece of me that’s terrified about it too.

While I worry that I am already projecting too much about what this summer will involve, here are my current thoughts:

  • I would love to see the following happen this summer: visit the library every week, ride bikes to nearby parks, make art, utilize our museum memberships, travel far and wide to see friends and family, visit farms and pick our own fruit, blow bubbles and color with chalk on the porch, cook and bake in the kitchen, swim at the local pool, and meet friends for playdates. I would say the likelihood of these things happening is around 100 percent, but it’s good to write down all of that I will be able to do once I have more time.
  • I am thrilled to have a summer with my kids, but I  am scared to have so much unstructured time with them, too. Time will be abundant, and I’ll have to figure out a way to fill it, each and every day. While I love that we can spend some extra time cuddling in our jammies in the morning, there are a lot of hours in the day to fill. I’ve got to find a good balance of home and out-of-home time, of quiet and not-so-quiet time.
  • I am concerned that we won’t be able to live within our restricted budget. We’ve gotten pretty lazy with money around these parts. I hope it’s because we have lacked time and just throw money at things to solve immediate problems. My fingers are crossed that the newly acquired abundance of time will help us downsize the budget. I’m already plotting to organize the household spending and activities and plan to have some new methods in place before my last paycheck arrives.

Again, these are just the thoughts cluttering my head, and I realize I’ll be forced to figure out everything once I am home. But there are a few things I can start doing now, like looking at our budget, that might make the transition a little easier. Come May 10, though, I’ll be in the thick of it, for better or worse.


9 thoughts on “Transitioning from a Working Mom to a Stay-at-Home Mom”

  1. You’ll be all right. Your kids will entertain you and you’ll find that the days will pass quickly. Lucky moms today have Internet, where they can access all kinds of resources for ideas on great things to do with their kids.

    Enjoy this time with them. It goes by quickly!

  2. Your Mom is right. You’ll use your creativity to get really in to it. I love that you’ve written down your goals – that will help make them happen, for sure!

    When I was nannying Caleb, I had a similar concern – how to fill our days so that they are fun and flow, but not get too busy? And how to prevent him from always wondering “what’s next” or “how are you gonna entertain me now”. I found that if I instituted my very own (and very flexible) schedule to the day, it was much more enjoyable. Our general rhythm looked like:
    lazy breakfast
    out of the house by 9:30
    do something out in the world (anything – nature walk, play in the yard, meet friends, go to the library)
    be back home for lunch (most days)
    grownup reads to kiddo (3 books max)
    naptime/quiet rest time (when he dropped his nap, he was required to stay in his room with the door shut and do quiet play)
    messy activity (art, craft, sensory play)
    back outside, or if too hot, watch a DVD
    … and before I knew it, it was 5:30!

    One thing that probably saved my sanity was that he came to only expect one craft/mess per day, and not til the afternoon. Which meant that he didn’t ask for constant paints, playdough, glue, glitter (agh!) and also that I could do any prep during his nap and clean up during his DVD, if necessary.

    That was long, and you probably know all this stuff, I don’t know why I wrote it all out! And it’s probably way too strict of a schedule for you guys. But maybe there’s some useful tidbit somewhere in there.


    1. OMG Liss, this really helps! Love the insights with the messy crafts. I’ll try that out! Please keep sharing your wisdom with me! Xo

  3. My days with Nathan look eerily like Liss’s days with Caleb. Nat, you’ll get in your own groove – springtime is great time to start – I had a much more difficult time when it’s too cold to be outside. Cause that often meant more shopping and more spending $$. And, being in charge of the household and the family of 5, I spend a lot more time cleaning/organizing/errands/chores within and out of the house. When Nathan helps it’s great, when he hinders, it’s often time for sesame street. 🙂 Anyway, you will ROCK it – and I can think of one or two places where you can go and meet up with friends…. 🙂

  4. Yeah, I just want to say, starting in July, technically I will be working in my Dad’s office M-Th 9-2, but can always shift my hours to 12-5 if we have a morning meetup with the kidlets. 🙂

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