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Navigating the Childcare Maze: Our Journey, Challenges, and Lessons Learned

Hello, fellow parents and caregivers! Today, I'm sharing a bit of our family journey, particularly the rollercoaster ride that is deciding on childcare. Buckle up as we dive into the sea of options, each with its own set of challenges and joys.

The decision-making process around childcare is like walking through a maze blindfolded, armed only with a dim flashlight. Daycare, nanny, grandparents – the stakes couldn't be higher. We found ourselves standing at this crossroads, faced with the daunting task of making a decision that would shape our family dynamic.

In the beginning, we chose the nanny route. The thought of sending our brand-new baby off to daycare left us feeling a bit uneasy, so we opted to keep our little one close to home. We initially planned to continue this arrangement until our second child was ready for daycare, and our eldest was ready for school.

Making this decision wasn't easy. It's a deeply personal choice, influenced by our desire to spend as much time as possible with our child. The comfort of having a nanny at home became a journey we decided to continue, evolving with the changing tides of our family dynamics. We both work from home, so we were not concerned about the accountability aspect of leaving your child with a single caregiver without oversight.

Being good employers was a priority for us. We believed in providing our nanny with a livable wage, paying a bit above average for our area. To make them feel at home, we offer access to our coffee, beverages, and snacks – because, let's face it, snacks make the world go 'round.

Our journey hasn't been without its bumps. We encountered a couple of not-so-great nannies in the beginning – unreliable and seemingly checked out. However, our current nanny, a trooper who's been with us for six months, has largely brought joy and stability to our household.

Now, here comes the twist in our tale – what defines a nanny, and what is truly important to us? We didn't want housekeeping to be the main focus, but a wiped-down cabinet after a messy yogurt session? Yes, please. My rule: our nanny should never be more work for me than they alleviate for us. Finding this balance is tricky, as employees, no matter how wonderful, come with their own set of managerial tasks.

Our active little lady, who seems to have a perpetual motor, shifted the dynamic again. She transitioned to one nap all on her own, and boy, did that mix up the routine. To keep up with her energy, we sought activities outside the house, a new workload for me to manage.

Accepting that someone would be driving our daughter around town was a mental hurdle. It's a concept that still gives me pause. So, if you find yourself in a similar situation or are simply looking for activities for your childcare provider, here are a few gems we discovered: age-appropriate library events they are free and well an easy and low risk way to get some socializing, a zoo membership for educational adventures and of course animal sightings, and, lastly The Childrens Museum.

Just look at this bond; this was their first outing to the library.

Our daughter was unsure and seeking comfort from her nanny.

As we continue to navigate this childcare maze, we share our experiences with the hope that it helps you feel confident in making your own decisions for your family. It's a journey filled with twists, turns, and unexpected joys, and we're right here with you, learning and growing every step of the way.

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