Hi everyone. It's been a long time since I posted since I really needed to get stuff done. It's getting done. :)
I was accepted to UW. Yay. Now I need to move to Seattle and make this work. Any help or references to other threads are welcome. I posted here vs. working and student mamas because Seattle costs are very important to making this scenario work (where, who, how far, etc.)
My daughter loves pre-school and she's always been in pre-school.
I do not want to commute. My car is old, and pretty much any commute in Seattle is going to eat about two hours out of my day, if I recall correctly. Those are hours for which I would otherwise be *getting paid*-either with my scholarship (studying) or from work (in my salary which is strongly linked to performance, and which has the potential to go way up if we get funded).
I will be getting about $1.5 k from my husband (separated but married) and $2k from my 70% time job, so about $3.5 k / mo.
I have two kids. My oldest has been in pre-school since she was two and loves school. My youngest wants to go to school. By "school" I mean, three to five days a week for three to four hours.
I'll be getting a master's and working about three hours during the day and another one or two at night.
Which neighborhood, assuming I want to bike to work or bus within 30 minutes at a maximum?
Where could I get three rooms (one for me, one for kids, one for a nanny) for under $2000?
Would an au pair, assuming I'd have to have an extra room, save me any money?
Do we have any hope of getting my kids into pre-school on my budget?
Anything else you would like to add.
I realize it's a luxury not to commute. But I have a scholarship and I need to study and sleep and do well in school. We also have to eat, so I NEED to work.
My dream is the following:
Kids in subsidized co-op pre-school (I found one that will be $1300 for both per month, that's 4 hrs / day, 5 days/week), but that's in Green Lake.
Live in 3 br house somewhere with au pair paying under $1800 utilities included. Though hard to find, if I rent through the summer it may be possible.
Au Pair at $400/mo + r&b to possibly drop kids off at school, possibly pick up and watch four hours besides, so let's say 5 hrs work / day, no cooking, VERY light housework (clean own room, pick up after play, share in household cleaning day, clear own place, etc. i.e. part of the family housework).
We will eat air. Hah. Okay, just kidding. If I look at daycare instead of pre-school, my problem is that the rates are the same--it looks like $2500 per month for full-time day care, even a bit outside of Seattle. We could probably swing a one bedroom apartment, though, and save about $1k on rent. That still takes me up to the maximum, though. :(
I figure if I commute outside of the urban zone, I'll be spending about $120 on gas, and an average of $100/mo in repairs on my old car, but I could save a ton on daycare by putting them in a very cheap daycare for about 10 hours a day, working that down to as low as $1800 / mo by taking full advantage of the full-time clause. A one-bedroom apartment would still be at least $700, though (law of diminishing returns is setting in here... sigh). Still, that would be $2,720. Is it worth it? (Keep in mind the issue of pre-school, my job, etc.)