Thank you for your response.
I just need "something" to update the cron. I was thinking that I could get the parent to update the cron in a while loop, but it looks like after I "run" the schedule, the schedule seems to have control - i.e. until it completes, the next lines in what you called "init_cron_daemon" won't execute.
Perhaps I just need the schedule to signal the parent to update the cron. I just need to research how I signal that parent.
The only thing preventing me from using this is updating the cron on the fly. I found that deleting crons caused table problems, but I wrote workarounds for that. Now I need to avoid the forking - or precisely as you state, work around it somehow.