When I found out I was pregnant, my husband and I started talking and thinking about daycare for our new baby. Would we send our child to a home daycare, daycare facility, or find a personal nanny? We looked into several facilities, interviewed a few licensed home day-cares, and spoke to some friends about using nannies.
One day we were talking to a neighbor. She mentioned another neighbor who was staying at home with her daughter and was looking for a way to make a little extra money. We spoke to her and for the first six months our neighbor watched our daughter. I enjoyed knowing my daughter was staying with someone that had children of her own and treated my daughter as her own daughter. Unfortunately, our neighbor’s husband was relocated and they moved. We were considering a daycare facility near our house, but we wanted to make sure our daughter was getting the attention we felt she deserved. I felt like a larger facility wouldn’t be able to focus on my daughter as well as a home daycare provider. I had also heard a few “bad” stories from a good friend of mine about her facility.
Luckily, a lady we went to church with had an opening in her home daycare around the same time our neighbor had to stop watching our daughter. We decided to send our daughter to her. Our daughter has been going there for over a year and half. The lady is licensed by the state and has random visits from DHR just like a larger facility. She has a meal plan she has to follow. She also has a school curriculum she has to follow when the children are old enough. She only keeps 6 children and none are over the age of 5 or 6 (most leave when going to school). When she accepts a new baby she likes to try to keep the ages spread out so that she doesn’t have too many little babies. She has an open door policy. This means we can drop by anytime, unannounced, to check on our kids. She has been a licensed home daycare provider for 30 years and she kept several of my church friends’ children.
I’m not saying I would NEVER send my child to a facility or that I think that home day-cares are “safer” or “better” than a facility. There have been home daycare providers (as well as facilities) that fall short of the expectations the parents have, but I believe that as a parent you have to look into each option and see which one feels right to you.
About the blogger:
My name is Stephanie. My husband and I have been married 3 years. We have a two year old daughter, McKenna, and a little boy due in January.