Another school year is on the way, and Allegra is once again searching for childcare. As some may remember, I had to put the kids in a daycare center for six weeks at the end of last school year. I hated doing it, but it turned out to be not so bad. My daughter in particular, really liked being able to play with other kids. Since they liked it so much, I tentatively opened up our search to daycare centers as well as nannies. I still had a pretty strong preference for a nanny though, for several reasons which I will bullet point for your convenience.
*Generally cheaper for two kids.
*I can control the safety of my home.
*I can control who comes into my home.
*The kids can eat what I want them to eat.
*The kids can sleep when they’re ready to sleep and wake when they’re ready to wake.
*The kids are disciplined the way I prefer.
*Because the nanny only has my two kids plus her own, there is a lot more time for playing and learning.
- My kids don’t have to follow a schedule and can stay focused on the activities of their choosing for as long as they want (within reason).
*My daughter’s special medical needs can be attended to in privacy.
So, anyway, there is this daycare center next to my husband’s work. I called to inquire about it because it was so close and I thought, well, my daughter did really like playing with the other kids. The first time I spoke to them, I pretty much figured it was a “no way”, because they told me the price for my two kids would be upward of $600 a week, which we can’t afford. However, the next day, the director called and offered us a significantly generous scholarship. Even so, the total came to about $85 a week more than we had budgeted to pay. However, since she had gone to that trouble on our behalf, I thought we should at least see the place. So we went. Oh my. It’s kind of hard to explain, so I’ll link to their website.
So, massive playground, music, dance, art studios, library, cooking class, garden, bowling alley, indoor gym, and I don’t even know what all else!
I asked about their nap policy (the other school’s nap policy traumatized my son so he now cried at the sight of a cot.) They assured me that they wouldn’t force him to stay in the cot and would provide him with quiet toys if he wasn’t ready to sleep. They also assured me that they could handle my daughter’s medical issue discretely.
So, basically it comes down to a matter of philosophy and money. Is being able to play with other kids (some of which may not be very nice) and do incredible impressive activities more important than the calm, controlled environment in my home, where they might not get to do quite as much, but have the freedom to focus on what they like for as long as it suits them? And if so, is it so important that it’s worth what we’ll have to give up in order to afford an extra $85 a week? Any thoughts?
PS- Obviously we prayed about it. I prayed about it quite a lot before I even considered looking at childcare centers. I guess I’m just hoping for some different perspectives or wisdom which would make the choice really clear.