Monday, March 8, 2021

Should we stay or should we go? The big question for emerging empty nesters

When people ask how old our kids are and how many still live with us, I like to say we're "empty nesters in transition."

And we are. The two oldest live on their own, while the younger three are still with us in the house. In the next few years, we'll see at least one more leave if not two.

Actually, if you think about it, all parents are "empty nesters in transition" from the moment their first child is born. The minute that kid comes out, you begin your job of training them to live and thrive on their own.

Over the past year, Terry and I have had our first serious and semi-detailed conversations about what happens in the next phase of our lives. We've been doing this kid thing since 1994, and while you never finish being a parent, we'll probably be well and truly on our own within the next decade.

We've talked about moving. We've talked about being true snow birds and spending the winter months somewhere down south, though the thought of that makes me feel 80 years old.

We've also talked about staying in this house, where we've already lived for nearly 18 years, a while longer. Yes, it's bigger than we're going to need, but the upside is that you can repurpose rooms however you want. Terry has already commandeered one upstairs for use as a craft room, and I would love eventually to have an office/music practice room.

Within the past few days as I type this, we've had two guys over the house to talk about redoing the basement floor and the master bathroom. These are the types of expensive projects you don't necessarily undertake if you plan to sell your home any time soon.

So for now, here we'll stay. And for now, we'll enjoy the ups and downs of having older kids in the house with us. It's not a bad stage of life to be in, really.

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