Dear Auntie Linda, September 20, 2015

Auntie LindaDear Auntie Linda, My husband and I have been married four years and have a two-year- old and a two-month-old.  We both have to work full-time and still just squeak by.  By the time I pay daycare, I only clear fifty dollars a week,     meaning I only work for about a dollar and a quarter an hour. We buy the kids clothes  in thrift shops and sometimes still have to get food from the food bank to get by till payday.   I feel awful having other people raise my children.   I wish I could start a home business so I could stay home with my children. but we have no savings and poor credit.  I have no college, no skills, and can’t afford to go back to school now.  We are good people living paycheck to paycheck.  We could easily be on the street if we missed a paycheck.  How do people get ahead when they are trapped like this?  Paycheck to Paycheck

Dear Paycheck, So many people are and have been right where you are.  There are a few things you could try with little or no investment.  You could check local regulations about starting a home daycare.  In some areas, you can keep up to five children without licensing.  That would enable you to have your children with you.  Possibly you could sell baked goods, home canned items, or casseroles without a major investment.  Home made soap often sells for six dollars a bar.  Look around and see what your neighborhood needs.  Auntie Linda

Dear Auntie Linda,  I was widowed after only four years of marriage.  My late husband, Will was an only child.  I remained very close to his mother after his death, since I was all she had.  Six years ago, I married Mike.  He was accepting of Mama Sue, making her welcome, treating her like family.  The problem arose when the children came.  She has become possessive, and demanding, trying to wedge our parents out.  She overspends, trying to buy favor.  I just found out I am having our third child, another boy. She asks that we name him, Will, for my late husband, saying she will make him her heir if we do so.  Mike hates the idea and says he’s had enough of Mama Sue.  What should we do?  Dilemma

Dear Dilemma, Sounds like you and Mike need to decide if you want to continue a relationship with Mama Sue.  If so, she needs to understand her role is family friend, not matriarch.  A family does not need triangulation.  Auntie Linda