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Old 04-06-2012, 04:59 PM
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Default Feeling Overwhelmed

I started my daycare 4 months ago. I have one full timer, and three part timers, plus my own three kids. I feel like I am so scattered! My house is always a mess, my laundry is never done, I never get dinner on at a decent hour. Tracking paperwork seems like such a huge pain and its all over the place. I'm so tired that my poor husband barely gets a hug at the end of the night. What are your secrets? Is there a breaking in period that I will get over soon and start enjoying this?? Any helpful adivse to not let the stress get to me?
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Old 04-06-2012, 05:24 PM
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I think you will get a lot better at it as you go a long. Better at multi tasking and organizing. If you post a specific issues, we can help with ideas. As for the stress, perhaps you started with too many kids, too soon?
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:01 PM
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I had the two part timers for year and a half (brother and sister), added an 8 month old when i first got licensed, and now four months later added a 2 1/2 year old. I thought I spaced them out pretty well, but I'm still having trouble. I think if I could get planning of meals and shopping all done on the weekends, it would help so much, but I'm usually getting the all the other household chores done I neglected during the week and trying to have a bit of family time that many times I don't get to it. i end up getting stressed out every time the kids are hungry cause I don't know what to feed them (I have a VERY picky dcb and dcg-all they eat is junk at their house) and am tired of the complaints. i don't know. It doesn't help that the flu has swept through my house, going through each of my kids for the last three weeks so I am drained taking care of them too.
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:06 PM
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Maybe that extra kid was just not a good idea? It sounds like maybe you are stretched too thin for now. I know it is really hard to balance your own kids and a daycare (I have 3 under 5!). The best bit of advice I can give you is to only take the number of kids you absolutely have to and resist the temptation to keep adding kids to the point that you are stressed. My max for now is 3 kids in addition to my own. Seems like everytime I add that 7th kid, things are just too much for me. That will probably change when at least one of my kids is school age but we will see.

As for the food, take the control back over the situation. YOU decide what the kids eat and if they dont like it, they can stay hungry till the next meal. I promise they will be fine. Or you could lower your rate a bit and have the daycare parents send a sack lunch each day.
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Old 04-06-2012, 07:17 PM
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I used to let the kids (the brother and sister) bring their breakfast. Boy was THAT a mistake. They literally brought either donuts, a bag of sugar cereal (trix etc) or sometimes even candy along with a sugar drink, like hi-C. Oh, sooo disgusting. They eat like that every day. And because I only have them part time, I have a really hard time acclimating them to healthy food. *sigh* And can you imagine the whining I had from my own kids when they saw what they weren't allowed to eat?? I think I do need to just serve the food and get a better backbone with the complaints.

Maybe I shouldn't have taken this last little guy...but having him is the only way to start paying off debt. With my other three we just barely pay the bills. Maybe making a menu and sticking to it will help. What do you guys do with complainers? These two complain about any food I serve and usually complain about activities I do too. I'm just feeling tired of the dissatisfaction.
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Old 04-06-2012, 07:25 PM
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And thinking about it more, I really can't complain daycare for all my stress. My dh is working full time AND doing school full time, so for the past 2 years I've basically been a single mom, having to take over all the household chores and kid duty where as before he would help out. So that takes it toll too.
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Old 04-06-2012, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jenniferdawn View Post
I started my daycare 4 months ago. I have one full timer, and three part timers, plus my own three kids. I feel like I am so scattered! My house is always a mess, my laundry is never done, I never get dinner on at a decent hour. Tracking paperwork seems like such a huge pain and its all over the place. I'm so tired that my poor husband barely gets a hug at the end of the night. What are your secrets? Is there a breaking in period that I will get over soon and start enjoying this?? Any helpful adivse to not let the stress get to me?
My secret is to not take part timers- they are generally harder than full timers, who understand a daily routine.

I have also started having the kids nap for specific times, and not letting everyone get up from nap whenever they want to. Now they have to read a book if they are up early. Momma needs her breaktime!


I also do household chores during the day. I will bring a basket of laundry in the playroom, family room ,etc and do it. I do dishes and clean the kitchen at lunchtime. I do not get to sit down and eat, but I would rather eat on the fly than have a messy home and less time for dh. When laundry does inevitably pile up, I have DH help me-.

Honestly- daycare is crazy, lol! You work too many hours and there aren't enough in the day to do everything. You have to multitask- do as much as you can during the day while maintaining quality care.

I do outside and crafts in the morning. Afternoons are for naps and free play.

You will get into a routine that works for you- it took me a year

I make sure though, that everyday at some point I sit down for 5 minutes and enjoy a cup of coffee- preferable on my porch in the sun at naptime!
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Old 04-06-2012, 07:41 PM
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I remember feeling like that when I first started out. Once I realized it was really all about staying organized and implementing a system it became much easier. To this day I have a rotating system for keeping my home clean and for shopping. During the time that my kids were growing up I made sure that they helped out with whatever jobs they could do within their abilities.

As far as the food issues go - I definitely agree with Cheerfuldom - "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit!"
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Old 04-06-2012, 08:37 PM
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Thanks for all the advise. I am feeling like I want to term my part timers, particularly the brother and sister duo because I also have to do school runs for them which are NOT fun. But I also love their parents and they pay me well. We'll see. Come August when school starts up, I have another one of mine starting school and the school rides just might not work. I think I do need to figure out a system that works for me, which includes limiting my time on here!
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Old 04-06-2012, 09:50 PM
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1. Kids eat what works for the family. Friday is tuna day because we are catholic. Don't like it don't eat. No complaints allowed at th table. I always make dinner while daycare is open. Kids Free Play or read for the last hr in the living room area while I'm making it. Also, everything is cleaned up 15 min before time to go so I'm not spending my personal time cleaning up toy messes.

2. My kids occasionally get baths during dc. Yep, flame me. Dck read outside bathroom within sight of me or I do quick baths while kids are sleeping or when all but 1dck has left. I have cameras on my sleeping kids so I can see them at all times.

3. I do a wash load every am before kids arrive. I change my kids out of pj's and immediately put in a load of wash. After preschool worktime we switch to drier and then I fold at nap or during free play.

4. Flylady.net has good organizational ideas.

5. I clean during dck too, windows and dusting in living room while kids eat breakfast. 5 min or less a day! Wipe bathroom every third or so day at nap or if my kids are playing really nicely.

6. Ask hubs to help out and give specific jobs.

7. I make freezer meals and they are tremendously helpful to have. One sat of work means weeks of extra time when you need it most.

It will get easier. Good luck. You will get in a routine soon.
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  #11  
Old 04-06-2012, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by MyAngels View Post
I remember feeling like that when I first started out. Once I realized it was really all about staying organized and implementing a system it became much easier. To this day I have a rotating system for keeping my home clean and for shopping. During the time that my kids were growing up I made sure that they helped out with whatever jobs they could do within their abilities.

As far as the food issues go - I definitely agree with Cheerfuldom - "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit!"
I started saying that phrase before I had any picker eaters here (well, so picky that I could not convince at all to try one bite). The kids tell it to the other kids now in reference to just about anything.
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Old 04-06-2012, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by jojosmommy View Post
1. Kids eat what works for the family. Friday is tuna day because we are catholic. Don't like it don't eat. No complaints allowed at th table. I always make dinner while daycare is open. Kids Free Play or read for the last hr in the living room area while I'm making it. Also, everything is cleaned up 15 min before time to go so I'm not spending my personal time cleaning up toy messes.

2. My kids occasionally get baths during dc. Yep, flame me. Dck read outside bathroom within sight of me or I do quick baths while kids are sleeping or when all but 1dck has left. I have cameras on my sleeping kids so I can see them at all times.

3. I do a wash load every am before kids arrive. I change my kids out of pj's and immediately put in a load of wash. After preschool worktime we switch to drier and then I fold at nap or during free play.

4. Flylady.net has good organizational ideas.

5. I clean during dck too, windows and dusting in living room while kids eat breakfast. 5 min or less a day! Wipe bathroom every third or so day at nap or if my kids are playing really nicely.

6. Ask hubs to help out and give specific jobs.

7. I make freezer meals and they are tremendously helpful to have. One sat of work means weeks of extra time when you need it most.

It will get easier. Good luck. You will get in a routine soon.
Great ideas.

I also start laundry before kids arrive, transfer during nap, fold after they leave. It helps. It all helps.
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  #13  
Old 04-06-2012, 11:10 PM
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Thanks you guys! Great advise. I'll try to start doing all that. I like fly lady. I'm just not too good at doing what she says! Lol
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  #14  
Old 04-07-2012, 07:46 AM
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you might also check into Dave Ramsey's program for getting out of debt. Thats what we are doing and what several other providers on this forum are doing. Its very eye opening and can make an instant change.

As for letting the part timers go, I wholeheartedly agree with that plan. I would rather work more hours with a full timer than to take a part timer. They are notorious picky, dissatisfied and hard to adjust, just like you said. Its nothing you are or arent doing.....its just the way it is.
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  #15  
Old 04-07-2012, 09:12 AM
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I love Dave Ramsey! I used to be so great at following his plan but admittedly that is one of the things that has fallen by the wayside since I started working. Thanks for the kick in the pants.


And I think I will really consider terming the brother/sister duo. The 2 year old is four full days so that's close enough to full time for me and he's not a problem. If I was willing to take one more infant, I could easily cover my income from the siblings, but I think I'd be over my head. I get at least 5-8 calls a month for infant spots. Tempting to grab one of them, but I'll pass for now.

I used to be very organized. If I can get that back, maybe I won't be feeling so crazy all the time.
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Old 04-09-2012, 08:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jojosmommy View Post
1. Kids eat what works for the family. Friday is tuna day because we are catholic. Don't like it don't eat. No complaints allowed at th table. I always make dinner while daycare is open. Kids Free Play or read for the last hr in the living room area while I'm making it. Also, everything is cleaned up 15 min before time to go so I'm not spending my personal time cleaning up toy messes.

2. My kids occasionally get baths during dc. Yep, flame me. Dck read outside bathroom within sight of me or I do quick baths while kids are sleeping or when all but 1dck has left. I have cameras on my sleeping kids so I can see them at all times.

3. I do a wash load every am before kids arrive. I change my kids out of pj's and immediately put in a load of wash. After preschool worktime we switch to drier and then I fold at nap or during free play.

4. Flylady.net has good organizational ideas.

5. I clean during dck too, windows and dusting in living room while kids eat breakfast. 5 min or less a day! Wipe bathroom every third or so day at nap or if my kids are playing really nicely.

6. Ask hubs to help out and give specific jobs.

7. I make freezer meals and they are tremendously helpful to have. One sat of work means weeks of extra time when you need it most.

It will get easier. Good luck. You will get in a routine soon.
Oh good, I'm not the only one who gives my kids baths during daycare hours! Phew! My kiddos are all 100% safe but I always felt bad doing it. Seriously though I don't want to work 10-12 hour days, be done super late, then just bathe them and put them to bed right after work. I need play time wih my kids too!
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:09 PM
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BUUUUT, what about us DCP's that do daycare that is separate from the rest of the house. Any advise there? I can TOTALLY multitask but now that I'm away from my main living area my house work is getting left by the way side
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:08 AM
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If you can afford to hire an assistant part time that.makes a huge difference! My assistant takes the kids outside while I make lunch and clean up and recharge its so helpful. She keeps the kitchen for daycare clean and whatever I ask her to do, it's so worth paying the extra for my sanity and I don't have to term anyone. I actually like having part timers but they leave earlier, I don't any child less then 3 days though because that's when problems arise.
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:58 AM
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I had always felt bad too because I felt like my family's dinner time suffered. I was just too pooped by the end of daycare to do these elaborate dinners. Not to even mention my motivation to eat dinner.

Now I do alot of crockpot meals. You can cook EVERYTHING in one of those. We eat from the crockpot 3-4 times a week.

When Daycare kids are eating breakfast, I throw the meal in the crockpot. By the time daycare ends. It takes 5-10 minutes to prep the table and we are all sitting down and eating. And we are all anxiously awaiting the meal since we had to smell the yummyness (is that a word?) all day.

Plus there is always enough to feed the daycare kids the next day for lunch.
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:13 AM
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I was going to suggest enlisting your husband to help, but if he's working AND doing school then I can understand why he doesn't help much!

Decluttering is a huge one for me--it's harder to clean when you're trying to clean clutter.

Otherwise it's a lot of routine and a lot of shutting my eyes and ignoring the mess.

We clean up toys in the playroom before lunch; then they don't really get played with much before the end of the day. While kids are going potty after nap, I scoop litter boxes and work on laundry. Once I am down to just a couple kids in the late afternoon, I will bag up garbage, keep on top of the toys in the playroom, straighten the naproom, etc. I clean up the kitchen and start dinner during naptime and afternoon snack. I try to load and run the dish washer during breakfast, empty it while they eat lunch. Once the downstairs is cleaned up in the afternoon (when I have just a couple kids) we move upstairs and I tidy up here, work on dinner, clean up the living room, etc.

Meal planning is also huge, huge, HUGE. That way the shopping will be DONE and I won't be having to run out to the store in the evenings. I can plan meals during daycare time, too. I have a composition book that I plan meals in. It's handy because then I can look back on past plans for ideas. I also have a well-stocked pantry and can pull meals together out of things i always have on hand, if need be.

Time for yourself is important, too. If you don't recharge your own batteries then you can't do a good job of doing everything else that needs done. Part of naptime and the time between kids going to bed and me going to bed is always mine. I read, watch TV, play computer games, whatever. Sometimes I'll clean, even! But usually that's the more detailed, decluttering/reorganizing kind of cleaning.
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:56 AM
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It was definitely much, much harder when my 3 kids were little. As they grew up and could tackle household chores, they helped me with those. When things get hectic here and my house is a wreck, it makes me crazy and is very stressful. Once things get put away the atmosphere always seems so much calmer! Staying organized and doing a little bit of housework each day is key for me! I try to my best to keep things put away, so the house at least looks neat. Toys are kept in the playroom area and everyone pitches in to clean them up several times a day. We always make it into a game!

You are in a tough situation with your husband working fulltime and going to school, because he isn't able to help you much. Definitely get your kids to step up and help when they are old enough to. It helped mine become more responsible and was a huge help to me!

I always made food for the daycare kids at lunch and our family would then eat the same thing at night for dinner. It helped making one meal that served for two purposes! This was also great when my kids were involved in after school sports and dance and needed to eat dinner early, way before 6 pm when I was off work.
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Old 04-10-2012, 10:39 AM
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MrsB, would you be able to share some of those crock pot meals your family loves so much? that would be a huge help.

I wish i could hire an assistant, but it would cost the the same amount as money I would make having two daycare kids here. I can only take 4 in addition to my own kids. So with my expenses, she would end up making more money than me!

The taking time for me is crucial. I sacrifice my time too much of me I think. Good news is I've joined a woman's group that three hours every Tuesday night is just for me without kids, so that will help.
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Old 04-10-2012, 11:20 AM
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I cook just about everything in the crock pot. I could give you recipes but I dont really have any recipes. I just throw what I have in the crock pot and everything is all nice and ready to go.

If there are no veggies in the pot with the food, then I usually serve them raw on the side or a salad.

Taco soup - I will usually buy a rotiserree chicken from the grocery store and we use the chicken for sandwiches and I clean the carcass and the rest goes in the pot.

Beef stew
spaghetti sauce and meat balls (I usually brown up the meat balls the night before) then put everything in the pot in the morning and turn on low
ham soup
roast w/ potatoes and carrots
pork tenderloin
bbq chicken
pulled pork or chicken sandwiches
ribs
polsa kilbasa, mushrooms, carrots, potatoes
one of everyones favorites is meatballs (i use a jar of mustard, a jar of ketchup, and a half a jar of grape jelly) serve it with rice.

Those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.
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