Why it Works for Us

Mr. Burgher is an incredible Stay at Home Dad, and we are so lucky for that. Take today for example. Work has been a marathon for me, and working on photos, the blog, and ‘lil Miss A’s school folder have really taken a back burner. It was a book fair day, but I figured I’d just order her some books via the book fair’s website; however, the school called Mr. Burgher and asked him if he wanted to run money up to the school. He was able to turn right around and take some cash to her. He then executed getting brakes on the truck and healing his not feeling so well self. What a day.

While I hate that I am missing a lot of the day to day moments with the kids, I am so glad he’s getting to experience this life with them. He does the laundry and will even help me pack my lunch. We’re working on a “savings spreadsheet” to show him just how much his work couponing is doing for us, plus, there’s the fact that we don’t have to shell out about $1200 a month on day care. What’s not to love?

This article from Yahoo speaks perfectly to why having Mr. Burgher as a SAHD works for us. Sure, it might not work for every family, but we’re lucky we can. Mr. Burgher, I can’t say it enough, but thank you!

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Mr. Mom

Remember yesterday when I was telling you about how I can’t do hair ? Even though he will get to have “his” day in about a month, today I want to celebrate not only myself, my mom, or my mother-in-law, but I also want to celebrate my husband. What a great guy. He’s dealt with breakdowns, potty training, weird food allergies, doctor appointments, daredevil stunts, and paying bills. I am so lucky to have an awesome man like him in my life, my Stay at Home Dad, Superman Husband, my own personal (and proud to say) Mr. Mom.

Couponing: The Beginning

I have always been skeptical of the little old ladies who stand in front of me at the super market checkout with a fist full of coupons. How much could they possibly be saving that it is worth holding up the line for 15 minutes, I mean how much cat food can you really need anyhow? Upon marrying my wife, I had no clue that she could very well end up being one of those little old ladies, minus the cats of course, but what I DEFINITELY did not see happening is that I too would become that person who keeps you waiting in line while he watches every single coupon being swiped and the dollar signs diminish.

For B, she has always had a love of shopping, which in the past has gotten her, and now us, into a bit of financial disarray. For me, I was always happy to get free stuff. Coupled with my addictive personality, I didn’t stand a chance. As we creep closer to climbing out of that hole, we find ourselves searching for ways to combat both her shopping addiction and my need to have a hobby and collect things. Couponing it is!

B started to coupon before we got together, however, with the addition of 2 children and 1 hungry husband, I think it’s safe to say it has intensified. Once we bought our house and were closer to all the key coupon spots, it was game on. Every Sunday, B would buy 3-4 papers and start clipping. She’d search online sites and blogs for the current deals and printable coupons, then find the corresponding coupons in the paper to get the maximum savings. After she had all her coupons together, she would hit the stores. At first, I stayed home with the kids, as coupon fever had not yet struck me and I still did not understand her system. She would come home with her loot and I would help her put it all away, amazed but not quite sold.

Part of my hesitation had to do with the fact that I did not see my role in the process, as B seemed to have it all in hand. Then one day, the TV network TLC debuted a show called “Extreme Couponing”. This show features the savants who have turned a simple money saving venture into an artform! I was intrigued at how a person could take a $1000 purchase and reduce it to a few bucks and in some cases, make money! Being a stay-at-home parent, I am always struggling with the fact that I do not bring in a paycheck and therefore the brunt of the financial burden falls on B’s shoulders. But again, how could I become a cog in B’s coupon system?

As I continued to watch the show, I noticed how these people seemed to have an endless supply of coupons, some from inserts, printed, or even ordered from a clipper service. I also noticed that they seemed to be pretty well organized in binders and began thinking about how much time B spends sorting and cutting her coupons. While there is a procedure of calculating the deals that my brain is not quite suited for, the sorting, clipping and organizing aspect was right up my alley. Then I thought about my baseball card collections I had as a kid and how the card pages made it so easy to organize and sort my cards, which happened to be the same size as some coupons. But did we really need that much space for only a few newspapers worth of coupons? Or was the issue that we needed more coupons? With more coupons, we could take advantage of better deals, but where would we come up with extra coupons that wouldn’t involve buying them? A woman on the show had the answer, however it did seem a bit unorthodox and taboo.

Daddy’s Home!

Why hello there, Mr. Lil Burgher aka G!

As many of you may know, I am a stay-at-home father to two beautiful, amazing children. What you may not know is that this really is my dream job and in a way, a source of healing for my past.

Growing up, my father worked a lot and suffered from clinical depression so he wasn’t very involved throughout most of my childhood. I ended up resenting him for his absence (we have since reconciled), and vowed to never put my kids through that pain and be as involved in their lives as possible.

Every day I get to wake up to, “Daddy…MOOOORRRRNIIIIING!!!” A is ready to get dressed, eat breakfast and watch “shows”. While she eats, E gets a bottle and Daddy checks FB, gets a snack and lets face it, watches kids shows with A.

Now it’s not all snuggling and watching cartoons, there is still a house to be kept and work to be done. That is where our magical Moby Wrap comes in handy, especially when E doesn’t want to be put down. I wear our little man tightly to me as I sweep and vacuum floors, dust, wash dishes and do laundry.

Of course, all work and no play makes daddy, well, lame. We make sure to spend plenty of time out in the yard and in the pool (except in crappy Pittsburgh winter), painting, coloring, sliding (weee), playing make believe and all other forms of tomfoolery.

I have truly been blessed to have such an amazing wife who supports my choice to be our children’s caregiver and we are so lucky that her job affords me the option to do so. To anyone who doesn’t agree with or understand a man taking on a role that has traditionally been the mother’s, I say, it’s the 21st Century, any guy can throw money at a kid, it’s called child support, but a real father goes out of his way to get to know his children and be there for moments large and small. This is not to make light or take anything away from all the fathers who bust their butts every day to put food on the table, just saying, there doesn’t have to be a double standard.

At the end of the day, I have a job, and it just happens to be one of the best things in my world. My children have given me a purpose, a drive and a confidence that makes everything okay and anything possible. I’ve been good at many things but being a father is the first thing I can honestly say I am great at, and you can’t put a price on that.