Ronda Weber
Age: 36
Hometown: Lexington, Ky.
Annual cost of child care: $16,800
Cost of care as a percentage of annual income: 20%

My husband and I have twin sons that will be two next month. They've been in full-time care since I went back to work when they were three months old. A good portion of the money we earn goes to pay for child care. It's by far the biggest item on our budget. Our child care is twice our mortgage payment. We feel very blessed, but double everything is certainly a sacrifice. The scary thing for me is: What if we had to choose less quality care for financial reasons? That's when it would get really tough.

Last updated September 22 2011: 6:03 PM ET
Child care costs: What do you pay?

In Massachusetts, the cost of child care for a two-parent, middle-class family averages 16% of their annual income. In Mississippi, costs average 7.3%. See how your state ranks.

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