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Unregistered 08:12 PM 03-16-2014
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?
Reply
MyAngels 08:19 AM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?
1. The fact that I have infinite patience when it's necessary - mostly when dealing with parents .

2. Realize that this is a business and not a personal calling, and run it accordingly.

3. See #2.
Reply
morgan24 08:37 AM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?
1. I am patient, I like to be around kids (except school age) and I am not afraid to speak up if something bugs me.

2. Some people in my area who didn't last long, their biggest complaint was the long hours and parents taking advantage of them. I don't mind the longer hours and I don't get taken advantage of because I won't let it happen.

3. I've been doing it for 18 years. I managed a small store with 12 people under me and worked long hours the pay wasn't very good. I got tired of it when the raises were small and vacation time was limited. I decided I wanted to put my all in to a business that benefited me.
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crazydaycarelady 08:59 AM 03-17-2014
I think to do this long-term you have to have a separate area in your home for it. Absolutely.

You also have to have a really good routine down for mealtimes, nap, and activities. My kids know exactly what is going to happen next based on what we are doing at that time.

A good contract is needed and it needs to be followed from the very beginning.

Go with you gut and avoid families/situations that you have doubts about or that have the potential to blow up (obvious red-flags, watching for family/friends.) *I learned this the hard way.

22 years and counting.
Reply
dalman 09:22 AM 03-17-2014
1. What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
It was born out of necessity. I needed a good income to enable me to stay home my five children. I have been a licensed childcare provider for twenty seven years in various counties in Minnesota. I homeschooled my children for eight of those years while doing daycare.
I love children and would rather deal with children's games than adult/children's game playing in the corporate world.
I kept a grateful heart, thus enabling me to keep my attitude right (most the time).

2. What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
I run a quality home daycare. I have always had a waiting list due to that fact. I love the children and they know it. Most of the children do not want to go home with their parents.
This is a HOME daycare, not a daycare center. I do not run it like a center.
I confront the issues that need to be confronted and let the others go, aka, pick your battles with the parents.
I do not take every child that comes along. My husband and I interview the parents and child for two to three hours. This is the most important relationship. We are, in essence, co-parenting. I have them ten hours a day. The parents have them two to three hours a day and then they go to bed. I need to know that we are all on the same page.

3. What are your longevity secrets?
I am very disciplined and run a tight ship. I am consistent and I do not let the children rule the roost. This creates a peaceful, calm environment (most of the time) for them and for me.
I get up an hour early every morning to have my coffee, read my Bible and have some time to myself.
I make my weekends special. Every weekend is pretty much a mini vacation.
I pursued other options outside of daycare. I took night classes and online classes.
I have a busy life outside of daycare. This helps to keep a right perspective and a good attitude.
I take all of my vacation time. Every year.

I will probably think of more. These are some excellent questions to ponder. Thank you.
Reply
Laurel 10:28 AM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?
I am retiring in June after 20 years of doing child care. A few years part time and 18 full time.

-I don't think I could have done it if I wouldn't have had my husband's salary to supplement mine or the related health insurance.

-I think my laid back kind of personality helped.

-My family was on board. Well kinda of... not at first, but my husband got on board early.

-I had a few important rules but not a ton of them. That gave me the freedom to not have to stick to things I later would regret making a rule about.

-Sounds obvious but I really enjoy being around children...for the most part. Some providers see it more from a big money angle (which in most areas it is NOT). In fact, I saw some stats that it is one of the lowest paid professions.

-I started with basic equipment and added to it. I know a provider who spent a LOT of money making the greatest playroom ever and outdoor area and then found out child care wasn't for her.

-I tried not to be in debt to the point that I couldn't take less children if I wanted to.

-I tried to pick clients carefully. Backfired a few times though.

-I had someone to vent to. First it was my husband, then forums like this one and other providers.

So far, that is all I can think of.

Laurel
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nannyde 10:44 AM 03-17-2014
https://www.daycare.com/nannyde/the-long-haul.htm
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Laurel 11:20 AM 03-17-2014
Here are the stats from 2012 on childcare workers that I saw on the Bureau of Labor Statistics. http://www.bls.gov/ooh/personal-care...kers.htm#tab-5

Like nannyde said, a second income stream is good. I never needed one for job satisfaction (but it is a good idea). Mine was my husband's salary.

Laurel
Reply
crazydaycarelady 12:19 PM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by :
-I don't think I could have done it if I wouldn't have had my husband's salary to supplement mine or the related health insurance.
Totally agree!

Concerning Nannydes blog about this opic: There is NO WAY I could have done this, raise a family, AND have another job, any other job. Fifty very busy and draining hours per week is really all I could ask of myself. I think that is why it is easiest if you have a working spouse also.
Reply
My3cents 12:30 PM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?a love for the job! I picked this as a career job, not to stay home with my kids, but as something I wanted to do.
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do? policy/hand/rule book, contract. Having a back bone to carry out your rules and not negotiate them-
What are your longevity secrets? above, and also having good outlets to chat with other providers, friends etc....this job is very isolating and also being good to myself. I work hard- so thus I must play hard- I look forward to my weekends because I have worked hard all week. I take good care of myself so that I can care for others- my secrets~
I responded above
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Lucy 07:31 PM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
What are your longevity secrets?

1. I have lasted for 20 years as of this summer. I started because I was burned out on office work. I was bored at a desk all day, and sick and tired of office gossip and politics. My work started to slack off noticeably, I was "talked to", and knew it was time to go. I figured that being my own boss without catty, gossiping women around all the time would suit me better. It has, and that's why I've done it for 20 years. I do NOT want to go back into an office job ever again! I've often thought about finding something outside the home so that I could have better hours and benefits, but I dread having a boss and being told how to do something. Ugh.

2. I don't really interact with other providers in my area, so I'll just say that I think I've been able to sustain my DC career because I don't take it so seriously like some do. Please don't take offense, but I just don't put the pressure on myself to make this a strict, stringent, by-the-book job. I take each thing as it comes, learn from things that went really bad, and move on. Also, I don't do preschool, and I don't have a strict schedule other than meals at a certain time. I like to say that having the DC kids here is just as if my nieces and nephews came over for the day. There are all the important rules in place and I insist on manners and respect - not only for me, but for each other - and I don't let them go hog wild. Not even close. But I don't have a list of 100 do's and dont's like "some people". I'm easy going and take things as they come, and I think that fact has sustained me. I could never do the time schedule thing, the preschool thing, the endless "rules of play" thing, etc. Ugh. I have ZERO interest in the stars quality program. I don't want to be certified in early childhood education, I just want to have people pay me to provide safe, loving, fun care for their kids. That's all I ask.

3. I think I pretty much answered "longevity" in my long-winded answers above. So I will merely add that I'm also too lazy to get out and look for a job outside the home, so here I sit... 20 years later!!
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e.j. 09:07 PM 03-17-2014
What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
There are so many things that factor into why I've stuck with child care for so long - (18 years). I think the biggest thing was just personal determination. I wanted to be home with my own kids and child care was the only way I could do it and still help to support my family. There were many times I wanted to quit but the thought of having to leave them off in someone else's care kept me going. I've also had the support of my husband. I couldn't have stuck it out so long without him behind me.

What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
I do have a dedicated room for child care and as someone else mentioned, it definitely helps. I also worked around my own kids' schedules as much as possible. I opened after they left for school and closed just as they were getting home from school. I think it helped them not to have to share their home/mom with the day care kids all the time. They did have to deal with my dc business during the summer but they also were allowed to go to their own rooms for privacy and quiet if they needed it.

Also, I also started to take Fridays off so I could have a day to schedule dr and dentist appointments, IEP meetings, etc... If I didn't have appointments scheduled, it gave me an extra day to catch up on housework so my weekends weren't so hectic. Now that my kids are young adults and are either working or at school, I often have Fridays to myself. Knowing I'll have the house to myself for a day gets me through some of the more challenging dc days.

What are your longevity secrets?
My dd told me to type, "Drugs and alcohol"

I think the most important thing is to learn not to sweat the small stuff. I try to keep some perspective; not take things personally. I provide a service and the parents pay for it. I don't expect anything more so when the things I do aren't as appreciated as maybe they could be, I'm not upset. When they are appreciated (which is more the norm because most of my dc families have been pretty wonderful), I'm thrilled.

When I go through those times when I feel like I can't do this job any more, I tell myself that it's temporary and then I take it one day at a time until it gets better. I go through cycles when I love my job and then have to drag myself through the days until I start to love it again.
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Lucy 11:06 PM 03-17-2014
Originally Posted by e.j.:
What are your longevity secrets?
My dd told me to type, "Drugs and alcohol"

That cracked me up! I like your daughter's way of thinking!
Reply
Play Care 04:19 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by crazydaycarelady:
Totally agree!

Concerning Nannydes blog about this opic: There is NO WAY I could have done this, raise a family, AND have another job, any other job. Fifty very busy and draining hours per week is really all I could ask of myself. I think that is why it is easiest if you have a working spouse also.
Agree. I've said many times there is NO way I could do this job without the fact my husband has good, professional employment with excellent health benefits.
Reply
Laurel 05:31 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by Lucy:
1. I have lasted for 20 years as of this summer. I started because I was burned out on office work. I was bored at a desk all day, and sick and tired of office gossip and politics. My work started to slack off noticeably, I was "talked to", and knew it was time to go. I figured that being my own boss without catty, gossiping women around all the time would suit me better. It has, and that's why I've done it for 20 years. I do NOT want to go back into an office job ever again! I've often thought about finding something outside the home so that I could have better hours and benefits, but I dread having a boss and being told how to do something. Ugh.

2. I don't really interact with other providers in my area, so I'll just say that I think I've been able to sustain my DC career because I don't take it so seriously like some do. Please don't take offense, but I just don't put the pressure on myself to make this a strict, stringent, by-the-book job. I take each thing as it comes, learn from things that went really bad, and move on. Also, I don't do preschool, and I don't have a strict schedule other than meals at a certain time. I like to say that having the DC kids here is just as if my nieces and nephews came over for the day. There are all the important rules in place and I insist on manners and respect - not only for me, but for each other - and I don't let them go hog wild. Not even close. But I don't have a list of 100 do's and dont's like "some people". I'm easy going and take things as they come, and I think that fact has sustained me. I could never do the time schedule thing, the preschool thing, the endless "rules of play" thing, etc. Ugh. I have ZERO interest in the stars quality program. I don't want to be certified in early childhood education, I just want to have people pay me to provide safe, loving, fun care for their kids. That's all I ask.

3. I think I pretty much answered "longevity" in my long-winded answers above. So I will merely add that I'm also too lazy to get out and look for a job outside the home, so here I sit... 20 years later!!
Oh wow, your number 2 really speaks to me. Yes, yes and yes!!!! I agree. I'd be nuts if I had to worry about every little thing.

Laurel
Reply
Play Care 05:38 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by :
so I'll just say that I think I've been able to sustain my DC career because I don't take it so seriously like some do. Please don't take offense, but I just don't put the pressure on myself to make this a strict, stringent, by-the-book job. I take each thing as it comes, learn from things that went really bad, and move on.
I find this to be a balance. Because when I'm too "loosey-goosey" I wind up feeling like a doormat. When I'm too stringent I wind up feeling foolish
Somewhere there has to be a happy medium.
I recently had to talk to a parent who was ten *minutes* early each morning...On one hand, I felt as though it was *only* ten minutes. On the other, this is DCP who already pushes it, so extra time, even if it's *only* ten minutes was too much. It adds up to almost an hour more each week - and over an hour if I include the fact he often doesn't pick up until 4:45 (my closing time) and is here for 5-10 minutes after getting dcg ready to go.
Many of the providers in my area are way more relaxed about things - but I also see them working 2-3 side jobs to make ends meet.
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nannyde 07:05 AM 03-18-2014
I think some other things that make providers successful over time is SPACE. Having space to get away from crying has been my greatest single asset in caring for the younger crowd. Having space to keep the older crowd away from the younger crowd makes all the difference.

I don't make decisions based on how crying feels to me. I can walk away, grab a fresh breath and go back in when I am ready. Keeping your self under control and making decisions based on what you think is right is a way better position than making decisions based on what individual kids want at the moment.

Having infants separated from toddlers... toddlers away from preschoolers... and preschoolers away from infants is what works best for me. Each mixing is by invite only instead of a daily occurrence because of space.

Having helpers for every year of business is another huge factor in longevity. Having helpers to be in the play room at ALL times the kids are up and carry the load of cleaning, laundry, and paperwork has helped too. It costs money... big money... but it makes all the difference in longevity.

One thing you might want to ask within your question is longevity plus the number of kids the veterans carry through the years. Getting advice from a twenty year vet who has a couple of kids a few hours a week is different than someone like Blackcat who carries a full load of ten kids singlehandedly over decades. Blackcat knows how to care for kids in a way I don't because I've had to have an assistant when my numbers go over eight. (iowa law).

The learning curve is very different when you are juggling multi level aged group kids than when you have a handful of before and after school kids and one preschooler.

Remember that with longevity the provider AGES. The provider ages one year for each year of experience. As we age our finances change, our generational differences with parents increase, our health changes.... our CHILDREN age... etc. So what worked a decade ago was a different time than now.
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KIDZRMYBIZ 09:02 AM 03-18-2014
I give this advice to the few that have told me they want to do in-home, so I guess this is my secret to my 12+ years:

1. Make peace with whatever room you allow the kids into will be trashed. It's unavoidable, and nothing new carpet/paint/or a little drywall or woodwork work won't fix when your daycare days are over.

2. Make sure you truly are a homebody. If the thought of being "stuck at home, all day every day" freaks you out, this is not the job for you!

3. Decide what you are willing to put up with and what you are not, make a contract and handbook, and STICK TO IT!

A few friends in the biz that have quit has been largely due to the way kids behave today (basically not respecting her authority). I use a John Rosemond approach with a lot of my "problem areas."
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Blackcat31 09:09 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by nannyde:
One thing you might want to ask within your question is longevity plus the number of kids the veterans carry through the years. Getting advice from a twenty year vet who has a couple of kids a few hours a week is different than someone like Blackcat who carries a full load of ten kids singlehandedly over decades. Blackcat knows how to care for kids in a way I don't because I've had to have an assistant when my numbers go over eight. (iowa law).

The learning curve is very different when you are juggling multi level aged group kids than when you have a handful of before and after school kids and one preschooler.

Remember that with longevity the provider AGES. The provider ages one year for each year of experience. As we age our finances change, our generational differences with parents increase, our health changes.... our CHILDREN age... etc. So what worked a decade ago was a different time than now.
This is so true. The variables make a HUGE difference.

Originally Posted by KIDZRMYBIZ:
I use a John Rosemond approach with a lot of my "problem areas."
I John Rosemond.

I give his "Parent Power" (I think it's called "The new Parent Power" now) book to family members and friends as a baby shower gift.

I've thought about handing it out to all new enrollments here.
Reply
originalkat 09:20 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by dalman:
1. What do you think enabled the long-term bit?
It was born out of necessity. I needed a good income to enable me to stay home my five children. I have been a licensed childcare provider for twenty seven years in various counties in Minnesota. I homeschooled my children for eight of those years while doing daycare.
I love children and would rather deal with children's games than adult/children's game playing in the corporate world.
I kept a grateful heart, thus enabling me to keep my attitude right (most the time).

2. What did you do or not do that providers you know who dropped out early did or did not do?
I run a quality home daycare. I have always had a waiting list due to that fact. I love the children and they know it. Most of the children do not want to go home with their parents.
This is a HOME daycare, not a daycare center. I do not run it like a center.
I confront the issues that need to be confronted and let the others go, aka, pick your battles with the parents.
I do not take every child that comes along. My husband and I interview the parents and child for two to three hours. This is the most important relationship. We are, in essence, co-parenting. I have them ten hours a day. The parents have them two to three hours a day and then they go to bed. I need to know that we are all on the same page.

3. What are your longevity secrets?
I am very disciplined and run a tight ship. I am consistent and I do not let the children rule the roost. This creates a peaceful, calm environment (most of the time) for them and for me.
I get up an hour early every morning to have my coffee, read my Bible and have some time to myself.
I make my weekends special. Every weekend is pretty much a mini vacation.
I pursued other options outside of daycare. I took night classes and online classes.
I have a busy life outside of daycare. This helps to keep a right perspective and a good attitude.
I take all of my vacation time. Every year.

I will probably think of more. These are some excellent questions to ponder. Thank you.
I love all of this!!
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KIDZRMYBIZ 09:29 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by Blackcat31:
I've thought about handing it out to all new enrollments here.
YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have referenced him to many a daycare parent (I tell them to just google his name with whatever problem) and follow his advice. I guarantee 100% success. They come back the next day horrified. Well, that's why your kid is in this boat in the first place...you refuse to be the parent. I'm glad I will not know you and your child when they are 10, 13, 16, 18, etc!
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nannyde 10:14 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by dalman:

3. What are your longevity secrets?
I am very disciplined and run a tight ship. I am consistent and I do not let the children rule the roost. This creates a peaceful, calm environment (most of the time) for them and for me.
I get up an hour early every morning to have my coffee, read my Bible and have some time to myself.
.
Yes to the above

I learned early on to NEVER appear tired to the day care parents. I get up at least an hour before first kid. As I have aged it takes longer to look not tired so each year I have gotten up a little earlier.

I may have slept beyond that a couple of times when I was sick. I hate the feeling of only having a little time to myself before the kids get here.

I run a tight ship too. The more kids the tighter. I'm in the process of selling my house so I have been closed for a few months and just ran a crew of two to four kids for about six months. It's easier to be more relaxed when I have two kids in a 2500 square foot house and a helper!!!!!!
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Lucy 10:15 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by Play Care:
I find this to be a balance. Because when I'm too "loosey-goosey" I wind up feeling like a doormat. When I'm too stringent I wind up feeling foolish
Somewhere there has to be a happy medium.
I recently had to talk to a parent who was ten *minutes* early each morning...On one hand, I felt as though it was *only* ten minutes. On the other, this is DCP who already pushes it, so extra time, even if it's *only* ten minutes was too much. It adds up to almost an hour more each week - and over an hour if I include the fact he often doesn't pick up until 4:45 (my closing time) and is here for 5-10 minutes after getting dcg ready to go.
Many of the providers in my area are way more relaxed about things - but I also see them working 2-3 side jobs to make ends meet.
I get what you're saying about policies. My comment about being more relaxed really referred to my everyday schedule, or lack thereof. As far as how I handle enforcing policies, I guess I'd have to say I'm a little inconsistent. My current families have been with me for 3-9 years so there's a little latitude. I won't be walked over however.

This school year is the very first year I've had all school agers. Two of them are PM Kindergarten, so they're here with me almost all day, except for the 2 hrs 45 min they're in school. And my bigger SA'ers are here a total of 3 hours. For 19 years, I had mixed ages - newborn to 11 years and everything in between - all at the same time. I feel like the strict time schedule way, and the endless (what I consider to be picky) rules on how to play with each toy way, just don't work FOR ME. Your mileage may vary.
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Laurel 10:39 AM 03-18-2014
Originally Posted by Play Care:
I find this to be a balance. Because when I'm too "loosey-goosey" I wind up feeling like a doormat. When I'm too stringent I wind up feeling foolish
Somewhere there has to be a happy medium.
I recently had to talk to a parent who was ten *minutes* early each morning...On one hand, I felt as though it was *only* ten minutes. On the other, this is DCP who already pushes it, so extra time, even if it's *only* ten minutes was too much. It adds up to almost an hour more each week - and over an hour if I include the fact he often doesn't pick up until 4:45 (my closing time) and is here for 5-10 minutes after getting dcg ready to go.
Many of the providers in my area are way more relaxed about things - but I also see them working 2-3 side jobs to make ends meet.


I totally agree. There are some that take advantage so they wouldn't even get that 10 minutes.

Laurel
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Laurel 10:51 AM 03-18-2014
I think our styles are personal to fit us and our personalities.

Before doing this I worked in schools both volunteering and for pay. At my childrens school I got to know all of the teachers and staff very well. I hugged them all when my last child grew out of that school. I made a special trip to each classroom, principal, janitor, secretary for hugs. You get the idea. Loved it there.

What I noticed from working there for pay (principal said I was there so much for volunteer work that he may as well hire me and did ).

Anyway, I noticed that some were more strict and some more laid back and just went with the flow. Yet both were effective. I even stretched myself and requested teachers who weren't my style sometimes. We could request teachers if we did it before the class list was made up.

One year I worked as a paraprofessional in a first grade classroom and so did two others (because of overcrowding and they didn't want to hire another teacher). I noticed the principal paired us with like personality teachers. I mean the same type of personalities as we had.

My day is pretty much unscheduled except for lunch/nap, etc. No curriculum per se but I also don't allow them to rule the roost. It works for me.

I think there are both by the book and more scheduled types of providers and more laid back ones and being one or the other doesn't make one last longer in this business than another.

Laurel
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EntropyControlSpecialist 01:30 PM 03-19-2014
Fun read!
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Tags:business management, education, enforcing policies - consistency, money management, provider accountability, safe play space, safety inspection, training courses
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