Monday, December 20, 2010

s/o Daycare (and a tiny pit on Parenting in general)

So in my post the other day I mentioned that I am not comfortable putting FireGirl in a school-type daycare setting for an extended period of time during the week.

I just want to make it clear that I am not in any way, shape, or form against daycare centers, Montessori or otherwise. Not one little bit.
Daycare facilities are a valid, worthwhile choice for working parents, an option that, like all others, has its own sets of pros and cons.

It's just an option that I am not comfortable with, for my daughter, for our family, for our current situation.

See, there's this theory I have on parenting, that, well, everyone is different. Every child is different. Every family is different. Every situation is different. What works for one won't work for another. What is ideal for one isn't ideal for another.

I think there is very little "right" or "wrong" (assuming there is no abuse or neglect, of course), but just figuring out what works for you and yours.

So really, just because I might say that I choose to do something with FireGirl that maybe you didn't do, or that I'm not doing something that you did, or what-not, it doesn't mean that I think that you're wrong, or made a bad decision. It just means that I don't think it's best for us, right now. And that's okay too. And it doesn't bother me one bit if you want to do things differently than we did. Go right ahead. Won't hurt my feelings at all!
side note - I really wish I could also get my mother-in-law to understand this point as well. She seems to get very offended if I don't do things exactly as she did, or if I ask her to do something for FireGirl that is something she didn't do with her kids. Even if it's something the pediatrician told us to do (ie "I didn't have to do that with my kids"). Ugh.

So, back to the daycare.

I recently came across an in-home daycare whose contract / curriculum / and schedule I love. She is fully licensed, she runs a structured program, but it is run out of her home. I've been to her home and seen the setup. FireGirl has already played with this woman's daughter.
The bonuses? She lives right in-between my home & work. Ten minutes from each. Short detour into her neighborhood, but otherwise it's on the way. And her rates are very reasonable.
I am comfortable with this. For us, this feels right to me.

Of course, I have no idea what her long-term openings are, haven't discussed it with FireMan, none of that. So I don't even know if it's possible. But I'm hopeful.

What I would actually love to see is for FireGirl to attend there four days a week for now (she still attends preschool one day a week thru May), then once my dad's health is better and they feel they are able & willing to watch her again (they've already expressed how much they miss watching her), we could drop down to two days with my parents, two days at the in-home daycare, and one day at pre-school.

And if for some reason she's not available, I'm hoping she can recommend a similar in-home provider in our area.

That, I think, would work very well for our family. For FireGirl. That, I am comfortable with.

Now, I can't decide if I should talk to her first to check her availability and see what she thinks about my plan, or if I should talk to FireMan first. FireMan doesn't usually like being bothered with these details, so I kinda want to know as much as I can before I approach him. But at the same time I don't want to talk to her and get her hopes up of having another client if he's gonna shoot her down. Hmmmm.....

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