I've been thinking lately that Doug being laid off is a blessing in disguise.
We have our expenses handled until about May. While we won't be living extravagantly in that time, we will be comfortable. We are still going to California at the end of the month and are planning at least one day/weekend trip with the girls before they go to Wisconsin for the summer (there will be tulips this year!).
I've convinced Doug that he needs to go back to school and finish his degree. He was so close to being finished when we met. But, the whirlwind that was the beginning of our relationship had him sidetracked. From single, to living together, to fancy wedding, honeymoon, and baby all in under two years is a lot! He says getting sidetracked from school was worth it. Now it's time for him to finish. Since his school is self paced he could finish in a relatively short amount of time. It means more student loans. In the end he will increase his yearly salary more than we could borrow. I'm proud of him for making the commitment.It's also been nice having him home with me during the day. He has been a wonderful help with Fiona. This time that they are spending together is precious time that he'll cherish. He's getting to see so much more with her and enjoy this fleeting time. She is getting bigger every day and there are just some things that you miss when you're working away from home. I think they're relationship will be stronger for it. I know it is making him a better dad. He is more in tune with her moods and knows her cries. He knows what she wants and how to make her happy. That is a marvelous feat in itself. Being the only man in a house with five women it is a grand accomplishment to be able to make at least one of them happy at a time! (Everyone has accepted that the next one will be a girl too right?)
Because Doug has been home he has been able to get Allie back on track and give her the individual attention that she needed. We've had two weeks without a single missing or late assignment! I am so proud of her and I believe it is because of the time that Doug spent coming up with what has worked. I was at my wits end and didn't know how to get through to her. One full day of exercise and chores and a new way to do things helped put her on track. She will need us to continue to check on her every day for the rest of the year, but I think we are definitely building the foundation for success from here on out.
Friday was Jane's Valentine's Day party at school and Doug was able to be there with her and help out. She said it was a lot more fun since she had someone there with her. Not only did we bring something, he was THERE! It's great for him to have that time and I know he enjoyed it.
While we didn't initially think of his lay off as a good thing, it is turning out to be that way.