Daycare life…. The inevitable expense for most of us parents that we truly dread…. but ooohhhhh how important this role really is to not only you, but your child.

Have you ever truly sat and thought about what exactly a daycare really is… what it means? Let me break down what I am trying to get at here….
For a mom like myself who works full time (by choice – I was not made to be a stay at home mom)…. you really have to think…. 730am Drop off – 530pm pick up…10 hours. 10! 50 hours a week! Mr. Cheeks will spend more hours of the week (excluding weekends) at daycare then he will with us at home. So what does that mean to me? It means that I cannot just choose anyone! I mean, this person is going to be a key role in molding who my child becomes! 
I never realized how important this role was until after I had Mr. Cheeks. We had a sitter picked out, but it fell through, and honestly I am glad it did. She was extremely nice and she would have been great, but not what we needed in the long run.
We interviewed a couple women who had home daycares. This gal Betty was extremely nice! She was that grandmother figure and had a home that you could fall asleep in because it felt just like your grandma’s. She had a great playroom, the house was clean, she had like a million years experience, pictures of all the children she had watched, and she was very nice. So what was the problem? She was everything that Brandon and I are not. She was old school in her parenting techniques and she was extremely religious. 
This leads me to the point of this post. The person watching your child (in my opinion) MUST be an extension of your family. This person is going to help mold your children. Brandon and I are very new age and a little granola in how we want to raise Mr. Cheeks, and we needed to find someone who was just that. We needed to find someone that we felt comfortable expressing our concerns or in my case, as a new mother, asking for advice!

So here are my tips for mothers who are about to embark on this whole childcare thing:

1. Write out the important points in how you want your child to be raised. This will not only help find the right person, but this is great for you and your partner. 

2. Interview! You DON’T have to choose the first place you look or first person you interview. Make sure to ask strange and weird questions! 
These are some questions we asked:
   How do you discipline the children?
   How many children do you care for? Did you watch any of their siblings?
   What type of personalities do the children you watch have?
   If there is a bully personality type in the group, how do you handle that?
   Are the parents of the other children nice? supportive? etc.

3. Look at the cleanliness of not only the toys, but the house or facility. 

4. If the person you like is a little higher then your budget, ask if you can arrange something – IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK!

5. And the most important of them all…GO WITH YOUR GUT! I knew on the way to our meeting with my gal that she was the one. 

I hope that this post will help some of you in your adventures of daycare finding! One thing I love about “Miss Michelle” is that she sends me pictures of Mr. Cheeks while I am at work! She also calls to tell me the funny things he does!

**DISCLAIMER***Yes he is wearing a girls bib…. we cant help how much he drools! He goes through all the boys ones haha

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