Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Exploring My Daycare Angst

To further explain my daycare angst, I have specific examples of what tends to annoy me.
  • The long drive and time to get there and back home again.
  • Inconsistency with potty training.
  • Lost items and ruining of clothing.
  • Having to bring in an overabundance of wipes constantly (more than you use at home).
  • Hearing negative reports on their behavior and trying to explain it.
  • Wondering what they eat and do each day.
  • Long days.
  • Bringing them home tired and cranky.
  • Raised rates.
  • Wondering if there is a better option.
Overall, I've always loved our daycare provider.  Perhaps I'm just moody and being petty.  Lately I just feel like I want to have more ownership and control over my chickadees' daily lives.

After next week I won't be using any childcare, which scares me a little, but I feel like I'll have more time to potty train the littlest chickadee and spend some quality time with both of them.  As well as save needed money on childcare costs.  Perhaps I'm being too idealistic.  I know it's not going to be easy to care for a newborn and give the others quality attention, but I like to believe I can.

As always, I'm looking for the perfect balance.  Perpetually dissatisfied.  I can't make up my mind what to do when/if I go back to work.  I guess I'll just take it day-by-day, week-by-week.  Originally I told our provider that we would bring the littlest chickadee to her house twice a week while I'm on leave, but the cost, time and driving one hour each way doesn't make sense.  I can do a very part time preschool for much cheaper in the interim and start daycare up again when I go back to work.  Or use that nanny that I know.  Decisions, decisions.

I love our provider dearly and so do the chickadees.  I just want to do what's best, but having a hard time making a solid decision and sticking by it.  I feel like I owe her my business.  Ever since I pulled out a few months ago, our friendship has been strained and I feel like I'm trying to get back in her good graces again.  I don't want to hurt her feelings or offend her by telling her I changed my mind.  I know I'm indecisive, so I could always change my mind again.  I guess it's best just to wait until the time comes to return to work.

Monday, November 15, 2010

T-3 Days Until Maternity Leave!

But really......who's counting?! I already have my last 3 professional outfits (as professional as maternity clothes can be) picked out, and then I can start boxing up the clothes I'm never going to wear again.  Yes, I said never.  No more pregnancies for me!

Mr. Bossman appears to be in a cheerful mood, so that is a good way to start the week.  Hopefully it ends that way as well.  Over the weekend he emailed me another new project/idea request that made me shake my head.  I really can't think clearly enough to come up with some brilliant Christmas promotional campaign right now - sorry.  I will try, but not too hard.

Pregnant woman with magazine


I have decided to fully utilize daycare until family arrives in December.  I am in full-on nesting mode and feel completely compelled to de-clutter, organize, clean, clean, clean.  I cannot be stopped.  This is completely unlike me, mind you.  I hate cleaning and find leaving the house for other pursuits much more enjoyable.  I scoff at clean freaks!  But here I am....living it.  *sigh*  It will pass soon enough.

By the way, who wants to buy some super cute work maternity clothes?  Anyone? Anyone? 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Work & Daycare Angst

What to do? What to do?

I am torn about whether or not to return to work after this baby.  I'll be a mom of 3 kids - 2 in daycare and 1 in kindergarten, paying for after school care.... and limited funds to pay for it all.  I assumed that my long-term daycare provider (and dear friend) would be able to take the baby and my littlest chickadee for the same rate she has always extended us.

I spoke with her yesterday and she said she raised her rates.  It would still be manageable, but when factoring in my 20 mile drive to her house one way -- not sure if it's worth it.  She is an excellent preschool teacher and nurturer.  Very creative, fun and in tune with little ones.

I also talked to a girl who has babysat for us a few times.  She is available to nanny for us for a flat rate a day for all 3 kids to include cleaning, driving, school work, etc.  When doing the math, she would be less cost overall for 3 kids because we wouldn't need to pay for after school care for our oldest chickadee.  But, the kids wouldn't get the social interaction and stimulation of the home daycare/preschool setting.  But less driving for me and time shaved off the day by having someone in our home.

I might be able to come up with a compromise or a blend of the two.  But I'm still not sure.  I'm so torn.  In one way, I like working out of the home and having that outlet for my creativity and self-actualization for my professional side.  Having a 4 day work week and a fairly easy position, great benefits and amenities are nice.  Then again, my boss is definitely annoying and moody and I can't stand his presence most days.  The company structure is weird and the marketing tactics are lame for the most part.  I'm 1 of 3 Caucasians/native-English speakers there; which is fine and can be interesting, but sometimes awkward.

I just don't know if I should take a year off from working to be a stay at home mom/freelancer.  Or try to work out a flexible working schedule with my current workplace and just continue to be a working mom.  Or try to find another part time job on my maternity leave.  I could just go back to work, get the benefits, take it easy, not take it too seriously, and try it for a few months.  Pay off the medical bills, try to juggle it all, get my bearings on being a mom of 3, then make a decision.  I just don't know.  I change my mind every other day.

I sometimes get utterly annoyed with daycare.  I often get completely annoyed with working.  I do not like keeping up a home and being domestic.  I get depressed when I spend too much time at home with the kids without a break.  I like a good balance.  Going to work actually allows me to get my personal things done and keep my head straight.  But geez - if I'm going to spend over half of what I make in salary for childcare, is it really worth it?  But even a little $ in the pocket is better than none, right?  My income helps with all the extras, investing for retirement, kids' college funds, paying extra principal on our mortgage & car loan, etc.  I like having that extra cushion.  I don't like worrying about not having enough money if something were to happen.

I wish I had a crystal ball or a Magic 8 ball to tell me what I should do.  I certainly pray, but I don't feel like I'm getting a clear answer.  I guess I should wait to see how my new little baby is and how our growing family is affected by it.

Can anyone else relate to these torn feelings?  What would you do if you were in this situation?  

Passengers Push For Child-Free Flights?

Oh, lovely article in the NY Times: Passengers Push For Child-Free Flights

FOR many people, it is the second biggest fear of flying: sitting next to a screaming, kicking, uncontrollable child.
How about: "Parents Push For Asshole-Free Flights"? I always LOVE flying next to the all-important businessman who just can't seem to turn off his phone on departure and can't wait to turn it back on upon landing.  And who couldn't care less about everyone overhearing his all-too-important business details.

"Buy, buy, buy!  Sell! Sell! Sell!"  "Tell Betty I said 100 copies of the presentation!"

I love the last sentence of the article quoting Anya Clowers, RN and proprietor of JetWithKids.com, a blog about flying drama-free with children:
"So consider traveling with noise-canceling headphones and try to remember: plenty of business travelers are annoying, too.
AMEN!


Sunday, November 7, 2010

Daylight Savings Day and No Sleeping In

It is completely lame that I woke up early on the day you are supposed to gain an hour of sleep! Blame it on the pregnancy insomnia, frequent need to pee and a chickadee who wakes up early no matter the day. But it sucks! There was a time I could sleep in until noon on weekends; meaning no one would stop me AND I was completely capable.

Lord knows how I need my sleep! At 34 weeks and still working, and having crazy busy weekends, I am so exhausted. My ankles are starting to swell and it feels as though my pelvis is ripping apart. It's not enjoyable. I am actually starting to get painful contractions on occasion that remind me of the pain I'm in for soon enough. UGH!

As soon as I go on maternity leave, I fully intend to keep using childcare until the baby comes and take some time off for rest and leisure. I can't wait!!

As I finish writing this, now both chickadees are awake and getting hyped up. No more sleep or serenity... I think I'll go walk the dog; she doesn't make incessant fart noises and laugh hysterically in a manic fashion. *sigh*