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Hi ladies! My son is about to turn 1 in a couple of weeks and dh and I are about 99% sure we're going to be enrolling him into a daycare for 2-3 days a week, 6 hours or less. (lol, the 6 hours or less thing is the daycare definition of part time). I own my own business and have been working from home / going in a couple days a week when dh gets home from work / taking my son in with me. Unfortunately, now that he's older, he's not too crazy about being in the office with me, not to mention I can't actually work because I'm so busy keeping him from emptying the cupboards, walking everywhere and un-filing all of our files! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> (Not that it's not the cutest thing ever, but I have to be realistic!)<br><br>
Anyway, for the past couple of months I've been steadily feeling more and more like I need to be back in the office during the day. I feel like I'm losing control of what's going on there (not that I don't have a great staff, but you know what they say....when the cat's away, the mice will play). And to top it off, we both feel like our son needs to have some more interaction with kids his age (our playdates are few and far between. He seems to enjoy them, but it takes him a long time to warm up since everytime is like starting over). So, we found a place that is a little more "academically" based, which I really wanted, and even though it's expensive, I feel like it's the place for him. It's 1 caregiver to 3 kids, and he would keep the same caregiver all the time, which is also important to me, since I'd hate for him to get used to someone new all the time. The place was clean (in fact, they staff was totally cleaning the room he would be in while we were visiting), they have awesome security, the caregivers are all CPR/First Aid trained, all either have teaching backgrounds or similar, and they encourage an open door policy - I can go in anytime and look in the window of the room or just watch and listen on the security cameras. So, obviously, I've made my decision as to where. So, what are my questions, right? Sorry, this is sooo long! Thanks for hanging in there!<br><br>
1) I've been home with ds his whole life - how do I leave him there? A little at a time, all at once, what? The staff assured me that they will comfort him and help him get used to the place as best they can.<br><br>
2) They do their naps at noon - 2:30. My ds still takes a morning and an afternoon nap. Since he won't be there ALL day, I was thinking it wouldn't be such a big deal, but then, when do I take him? Before nap time? After? During? They said that they would work with his nap schedule and slowly try to get him on theirs, but still...<br><br>
Ok, that's all I have right now. Any insight you ladies have would be superb. Of course, I feel guilty and anxious and all that, but I really think he would enjoy it. I'm not sure if I'm more worried about him or me!!
 

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I think transitioning into a daycare setting can be a very stressful time for both mother and child -- some adjust easily and some take a bit more time. I think 6 hours would be long at the beginning -- I would suggest taking it slowly but a lot of it depends on the child.<br><br>
The daycare that my DD attends has a 4 day transition period in which the child is at the centre for an increasingly longer time. The schedule goes something like this:<br><br>
Day 1: you and DC stay at daycare for 1 hour<br>
Day 2: you leave DC for 2 hours<br>
Day 3: DC stays until noon<br>
Day 4: DC stays for a nap<br><br>
Your situation is different but a type of staggard transition seems to have worked well for my DD.<br><br>
The most common advice is also to leave the daycare quickly in the morning but I found that with my DD it helped to stay a while until she was acclimatized to being in the room -- she's almost 3 now and I still stay a few minutes (10-15) in the morning with her -- it helps to me know the other children and staff.<br><br>
About naps--I used to take my DD out at noon (she only went 9-12 when she was your DS age) and she'd fall asleep on the way home--that way I had an hour or so to work at home if I needed. Taking him out during naps might be difficult unless he transitions well from bed to car.<br><br>
Hope this helps.
 

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I agree with Ynez that it will help to ease him in slowly - you go and hang out some, then leave him for a short time, half day, etc. It sounds like you will have the flexibility to have a nice transition. Keep in mind that it can be really stressful for both of you initially. Our ds goes to day care 3 days a week now. His day care provider said that 2 weeks is about how long it takes most kids to adjust. The first week was really stressful, even with shorter days - he wouldn't eat or nap! He was a wreck at home - talk about guilt! But he's been there 2 months now, and he seems to like it now. When I come to pick him up, he doesn't leap into my arms because he's happy where he is. In the morning, he's happy to see his day care provider.<br><br>
As far as naps go, our ds was a 2 nap a day guy, and day care is a noon napping place. Sometimes he's on their schedule, sometimes he's not. They are very flexible. I wouldn't worry too much about it. I'm not sure what the best time of day to go would be. If it was me, I would take ds in the morning and pick him up after his nap - all refreshed and ready to go. But that's just me (partly because I work better in the morning...). I think you would have to look at your schedule - what times are best for you to be in the office, what is your ds's schedule like, do you want to pick him up tired and ready for his late afternoon nap, etc.<br><br>
Good luck! It sounds like you've already gotten through one of the toughest hurdles - deciding that you need help and finding a good place whereyou are comfortable taking him.<br><br>
KB
 

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I just wanted to add that you might find that your son's napping changes once in daycare -- some kids can't nap in a different setting or because there are other kids playing but others nap better. My DD actually naps better at daycare because everyone else is lying down too -- I can't get her to nap at home anymore.
 
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