Wednesday, April 4, 2007

When I stop complaining . . .

and actually start looking around for feasible options, things get a lot brighter! I think I've found what might be a great option for childcare for J. so that I can get more work done during the day - Parent's Day Out Programs!

My dilemma with childcare was that since I work from home, part-time, for a not-for-pro.fit, I don't need regular, full day care (even on a part-time basis) and I can't really afford it anyway. I do get a lot of work done on the evenings and weekends, when H. can watch J. or when J. is napping, but I also have times when I need to schedule meetings or conference calls or need a big block of time, and so it's harder to fit that in while also trying to take care of J. If you've ever tried to make a conference call during a child's nap time, and spent the whole call praying that he wouldn't wake up, but then he does, and you have to try and participate in the call, take notes, get a screaming baby out of his crib and into a clean diaper, then give the baby something to keep him occupied all while you try and act professional and engaged in the call, then you understand why naptime doesn't always work. And if you've ever tried to schedule a meeting for 7 pm on a Friday night with someone that works a "regular" work week, then you know why working weekends just doesn't really cut it either. And finally, if you've ever gone to a meeting and had to take the baby with you, because you just couldn't miss the meeting but you couldn't find childcare, and you end up looking like a mom and not a professional, then you understand why childcare is sometimes a necessity even if you have the luck to "work from home".

So I tried trading babysitting with another mom, which worked out ok, but isn't something I want to do long-term for a number of reasons. I started thinking again about having a "mother's helper" come to the house - but I couldn't find anyone, and the cost of babysitting here is so high anyway that it didn't make sense since it cut too much into what I was making per hour. So then I thought about putting J. back into daycare 1 or 2 days a week - we had a place we liked, that I used when I was at my old job, but in order to justify the cost, I'd have to work at least 9 hours each day he was there and I just don't always have that much work available. Not to mention that one of the reasons I wanted to work from home was so he didn't have to go to day care ALL day and we could have time to go out to the park or do fun stuff during the day!

I had a friend that kept mentioning this parent's day out program to me that her church runs, and when I looked into it, and also did a search for other programs in the area, I found 6 different programs, all within a few miles of my house! The rates are cheap (about $15-18/day!) for anywhere from 3-5 hours/day. And the teacher-child ratio is low (4-1 and 3-1, on average), with a fun schedule for each day of bible stories, songs, playtime, snacks! Even better than what they did at daycare!

And he can go 1, 2, or 3 days a week (although a few of the places limit it to just one day). I even found some programs that either run year-round or have summer sessions! And when I started calling around, thinking that I'd have to get on wait-lists, I found one program that still has availability for summer and fall, and another program that has openings right now on M and W for their year-round program! We're going to visit one of the programs next week, and I'm still waiting to hear back from a few of them.

Thank you Lord, for this answer to prayer. You know I needed something to try and get the taking care of J./working from home balance figured out, and I hope that this will be solution.

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3 Comments:

  • That is awesome! I have said it before, but I don't know how you can work from home and be a mom at the same time. Supermom! This sounds like an ideal solution, and something that J would love, too. Yay for answered prayers!

    By Blogger Karen, at April 4, 2007 at 12:41 PM  

  • I hope it works out great for you! Childcare is freaking me out right now. I contacted one place now that said they won't have any openings at all this year. I don't know where to start. The idea of working 2 days a week is sounding much more appealing to me than trying to find full time daycare.

    By Blogger Liz, at April 5, 2007 at 8:12 AM  

  • Congrats! I'm so glad you found something that will work for you!

    By Blogger Jenn @ Frugal Upstate, at April 6, 2007 at 6:57 AM  

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