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On Why I'm Already Stressing Out About My Baby's College Education

Collegiate Gear For Babies

Future OSU alumni? If college prices keep going up, this shirt may read 20-never.

My husband’s family has a love for Oregon State University that runs deep. My mother-in-law went there, my husband went there, his brother went there and I went there. This little shirt that Fern is wearing? It was my husband’s when he was a baby, a self-fulfilling prophecy if you will, since he ended up going to school there, and one that I’m certain he hopes that Fern will continue.

But…recently I googled information about what the estimated price for a college education in the year 2030 (the year in which Fern could potentially start) would be and I just about had a heart attack in front of my computer.

I found this college savings calculator and put in our information to calculate the costs since we haven’t started saving for college yet. According to the calculations, if Fern were to go to a 4-year, in-state, public university when she’s 18, the cost (with a 5% inflation rate) is estimated at $189,823!  Apparently I should be saving $385 a month starting rightthisverysecond if I want to be able to afford this. Oh…and that’s only if I manage to find an investment with a 6% return on my money. If I just sock the money away under my mattress, I should be saving $720 a month.  I’m too scared to even let my brain consider what the cost for a second child would be.

This is definitely not an affordable figure for us, which is stressful to say the least, especially since we’re on a pretty tight budget these days and saving nearly $400 a month is a complete impossibility. I’m trying not to freak out about it, but it’s a little insane. And let’s not even talk about the possibility of paying for a wedding one day – I may have an aneurism.

Have any of you started saving for college yet?  Or are you not worrying about it yet?  Tell me I’m not the only one having nightmares about this.

Lauren Hartmann is the founder of The Little Things We Do, a blog about life and adventures in Portland Oregon. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook, or catch up on all of her posts here on Babble.

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