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sassy_red_head in perfect_parent

Daycare

My husband doesn't really like the idea of daycare. To him it's just a waste of money for something we could do ourselves (We both know this is not always the case). If we want to keep our house, I'm sure I'll have to go back to work, plus I'm pretty sure I'll want to since he works from home and we'll probably be all sick of each other being home all the time.

He's suggested that he take care of the kid at home. He's sure it will work since a lot of his work can be done in off-hours and for the stuff that requires travel or scheduled conference calls, I can either take some time off or his mom could babysit for an hour or two.

What worries me about this is that he might find it too stressful and just freak the fuck out. He disagrees. He's actually done way more kid taking care of in his life than I have so I'll have to trust him on this.

Just to have a back up plan I looked into local day cares to see what's what.

  • The subsidized day cares have big waiting lists but the private ones do not.
  • They run from $130-$200 per week.
  • They take children starting from 6 months to a year up until school age (5).
  • The cost seems to include lunch and snacks.
  • All the ones I've seen seem to stipulate that the care giver gets x number of days off for which I would still be paying but would have to make alternate care arrangements.
  • Many of them have immediate availability which means that I won't have to worry about waiting lists.
  • Many of the care givers have training in early childhood education
My issues:

  • I plan on raising a vegetarian until they can decide for themselves if they want to eat meat.
    In addition to this I plan on feeding them only home made foods and I worry that include meals would be hot dogs and Kraft Dinner
  • I don't like the idea of paying for a week of vacation and possibly having to pay someone else for day care at the same time. I also don't like that the other alternative is that I take my vacation at the same time they do. I want to be free to choose my own vacation time I want to pay for the services I receive, no more, no less.
  • I plan on using cloth diapers but I have heard of some day cares not using them and the parents being forced to switch
So anyways, I figure we'll try out my husband's plan. I know some people have successfully done it (Dooce for example) so we can probably make it work. I don't work long hours to begin with and they are reduced for half the year. I might even be able to work out some kind of half day schedule for a little while until preschool kicks in. If it really doesn't work, then we can sign up for a local day care. Even half days of day care might just be the bit of help we'll need.

With all that said, we'll just have to wait and see and try stuff and hope for the best.

Comments

I see where you're coming from. I was a child of day care growing up and I also worked in one (before becoming a reporter, I earned an A.A.S. in Child Development) for about two years. We didn't always serve the healthiest of snacks to our classes and I feel in a large class, children don't get the one-on-one attention they need.

Children, for me, are a ways down the road but when the time comes, I'm looking into hiring in-home care or getting my mother (who lives nearby) to watch them.
I was in a small private daycare (4-5 kids) and the ones I was looking in to have a limit of 5 kids per adult (legally) and they are all home-run so really only one adult.

I really enjoyed it as a kid. I made friends and got to do stuff that was different than at home. Also, over 20 years ago, giving kids garbage to eat wasn't as prevalent as it is now. I remember going out to my nanny's garden to pick the foods we would have for lunch.

My dad worked in another province and was only home weekends and my mom worked full time and the rest of our family was many hours away so I'm sure it was the only option.
Your daycare experience sounds much more positive than mine, especially from the food side of it. Children's nutrition seems to have taken the back burner these days.

There are things I like about the daycare I worked for. They had "webcams" in each of the classrooms so parents could log in during the day and "check-in" on their child. Unfortunately, I now live two counties away, so this daycare won't be an option when the time comes.

When I was a small child, my parents were new to North Carolina and didn't know anyone well enough to entrust their child to them. Dad worked third shift so he'd be home with me while Mom worked during the day and vice versa.
I don't want to comment on the financial side of the issue, but I think it's best when children spend lots of time with their parents (best for the children, of course). I remember that I didn't like going to the kindergarten. I've also heard many opinions that children should be breast-fed at least until a year. On the other hand, children should interact and communicate with other children, so I think at some point conditions have to be provided for this, but again, they don't really play with each other when they're under a year or even more. My totally childless opinion.