Friday, August 21, 2009

adieu to daycare

For several years starting in 1997 I worked as a sign language interpreter in a nearby school district. I liked what I did, but I never liked having to leave my two young kids at home to do it. Dan and I were always lucky enough that our schedules worked out just right in that we didn't have to pay for daycare. That was both a positive and a negative--as you can imagine, working opposite shifts, we didn't see each other much.

In Dec 2003 he got hired on as an EMT and we knew that his schedule would be changing to 24 hour shifts. At this time I was pregnant with Ethan. We did end up having to put the kids in daycare for a few months until I had the baby and was on my maternity leave. But in the meantime, I decided that I was done working outside the home.

I decided that somehow, some way, we were going to make this work--if we had to cancel our phone and never use our AC, I was going to stay home with this baby. This is when I decided to start doing home daycare.


And thus I have done, from June 2004 to the present, over 5 years, I have tended little ones. It didn't take me long to learn that I had a favorite age (0-2) and that a 10 hour day was plenty (6-6 nearly killed me for about a year with one family) and most importantly that as my own boss, I was going to determine how hard to let my job be.


Meaning, I basically didn't work with difficult children or parents! Over the years, I actually got really lucky. There were very few that I had to let go due to one reason or another, and even when I did, I made sure I gave it a very good fighting try to make things work.


(it's not blood, it's jello powder)

Sure, I was a bit limited and confined to home for the most part, but this really fulfilled a need. It allowed me to stay at home, be with my babies, raise my own kids during those special first years, and provide a supplemental income while at it.

This year, my youngest went to Kindergarten. And with that, I decided that my personal continuation of school would no longer happen online but in a real bricks-and-mortar classroom. Next week I start my Anatomy & Physiology II class--remember how the first online class nearly killed me last semester?--and thus today will be my last day of daycare.


I have mixed feelings about it of course, as most do when undergoing change. I happen to be at a unique place when it comes to daycare providers in that both my current sets of kids' parents are my best friends. That makes it quite ironic that I should quit. Nevertheless they are very supportive of me and my desires to further my education.


It's been great working with them on a professional level and getting to know and help raise their kids just a little bit. It will be so weird next week to not be on anyone else's time table, to not have a crib, high chair, and baby toys around. Weird that I'll be able to up and leave my house without a thought to who's needing a nap or a carseat or a diaperbag.


I'll truly have an empty nest at home during the day!


Of course Dan and I will be right back into school, so we'll be busy. And I've already started volunteering at the school again, which I love. We hope to reconnect during our quiet days when he's off-shift and have a couple of day dates together, trips to the temple, etc. It's a whole new chapter in our lives!


Thanks to all the many parents and friends who have entrusted me with the care of their children over the past 5+ years. There's a little piece of my heart with each and every one of them. ('cept for that Screamer that I tended last year *wink*) My kids are already sad about the change! I'll miss these two little cherubs but again, since I'm friends with their moms, I know I'll continue to see them often. Love you kiddos!


I leave you with this fun video of the baby I watch, having a grand old time as Cameron entertains him.


15 comments:

Dahlene said...

So cute. I love the laughing baby. It reminds me of my daycare days. As crazy as things got we still had some great times. I am entering a new chapter too as my baby goes to Kindergarten. What fun!

Anonymous said...

Good luck with the bricks and mortar school! Remember don't let the other kids pick on you! Seriously, when Deborah went back to school, we felt so OLD, all the young un's were around 20, you'll have even younger, some 17 year olds. We found we have very little in common......

B

Christine #2 said...

Thanks Amie for tending my little one. I can't believe this one won't be going to Amie's house everyday. But, hopefully we'll get to spend time together when I'm off for maternity leave! Seriously though, it's going to be so weird not taking Sophie there, I'm going to miss that. You've kept her safe and happy for almost 3 years! Thank you thank you and we love you!

Carca said...

HI Amie
I haven't checked your blog this whole summer...so I am trying to catch up...yesterday when I stopped by I thought it was soo cute to see you and Dan eating lunch together...ALONE, I am so happy for you entering this phase of your life...and to be able to go to the temple during the day ALONE...Awesome!!!! Good luck in school too!!

Amanda said...

I'm a little jealous about your alone time & no diaper bags, naps, etc. I've got a ways to go again. Good luck in school!

Jenna said...

It will be quite the change for you, enjoy this new chapter!

wittygal said...

Great post! Bitter sweet goodbyes are hard.

*lindsey said...

Yo,thanks for the walgreens tip! I just uploaded my picture...at 11:30 pm... I hope they are on Western time!

Delfina said...

So cute. That is a big change, but you'll be fine. Your a very strong person and your doing what heart is set on.

Lorie said...

Change is always a little hard, but exciting. And it sounds like there are good things ahead.

jinxi~ aka angi said...

What a cool tribute.. you are so sweet and I wish you the best with all of your future endeavors.. this is exciting.. :)

Heidi E. said...

Good luck in school..

Jennifer (jkincolorado) said...

I wish you the best of luck with this next chapter of your life. Your pictures are adorable!!

Margee' said...

Amie, I know exactly what you're going through. After many years of doing day care, I had to give it up in 1990.
It was a sad day for me!
Good luck!

Mike & Kenia said...

Good luck in your school Amie!!!
You're gonna be a great nurse!!