I remember being a teenager; I couldn't wait to get out on my own. I had no idea what it would cost to live on my own; All I knew is that I wanted to go out into the world and be on my own.

My first experience of living away from home was living on campus at Bemidji State University. I thought it was so cool to live in a tiny room with my best friend Amy. No living room...no bathroom. Just one room and then the whole campus to do the rest. 18 years old and on my own. That was what I wanted. I didn't realize how much home sickness I would experience, but I definitely lived through it.

After a couple years of living in a dorm, I realized that it wasn't an ideal situation. Hard to sleep with so much activity all the time; that's for sure. Studying? Difficult!

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Once I got out in the world, I started realizing how expensive it was. I was never able to live on my own salary; not even until I moved back to Minnesota and finally purchased a house on my own at 50 in 2018.

So I'm all for my kids living with me. It's sort of like; they have the basement space, and I have the upstairs. They each have their own bedroom. We have two bathrooms, and we help each other out. I stay out of their way, and I still get to see my kids on a daily basis. I love it. Do they?  The ones that work pay rent, or help with groceries, and the ones that don't help out with other things around the house.

I say YAY. Let your kids live with you until they build up a savings so they don't have to go out in the world with debt before they even get started. Some of your kids may need a little more time than others; some of your kids may never leave; it might not be in the cards for them. Everyone's situation is different.

For my family, having our home here in St. Cloud has been healing. We had a major tornado come through West Liberty, Kentucky in 2012, which was one of the big reasons we came back to be closer to family in Minnesota. There were other reasons as well, so this home is our "NEST" of healing and appreciating each others space.



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