For the remainder of this school year, I have the twins, L and El, C and A, and Ricky. Delightful, supportive parents who I enjoy very much. I also enjoy their kids.
Ironically, Ricky's mom teaches preschool in Johnny's district. *Pausing here to recognize - WHAT ARE THE CHANCES? I babysat for this woman since Oct. and knew what district she taught in, but never she taught preschool. When I asked her, I was like STOP IT!
She looked at her list. Ricky's mom didn't request a screening when she registered him. This ticked Ricky's mom off, because it'll now take longer to get Johnny services since he won't be assessed until after he starts preschool in the fall.
After I wrote my letter to Nelly, Ricky's mom let me know that Johnny's mom called the school and requested a screening. Unfortunately they had no screenings left, but at least Nelly seemed to be coming around. She was confident that my letter made an impact. For Johnny's sake, I sure hope so.
The woman who cuts my hair was disgusted by my stories of Wil's folks yanking him and leaving me high and dry, and of Johnny's mom not coming back suddenly after I'd held a space for her and skipped out on other opportunities. At my next haircut, I'll share with her BB and his wack-a-doodle folks. Haircut Chica gets it, because she provides a service for people. She deals with cancellations and inconsideration too.
I told her how difficult this daycare thing has been. Should I even bother trying to find anyone new? It felt dicey. So many nutter-butters out there, and I don't mean tasty cookie variety.
Haircut Chica told me that she knew someone who was closing her daycare in the SAME.TOWN.WHERE.I.LIVE. Huh? She reached out and encouraged the woman who was shutting down (I later learned that she's closing because of a difficult parent) to give out my number to any teachers looking for a new in-home daycare.
Two sisters reached out to me from that closing daycare. Thanks to Haricut Chica. A few days before I left for Europe, I met the 'sistas'. One needs care for two kids 3 days a week. The other needs care 2 days a week for 1 kid. They hoped the cousins could overlap at least one day. Babysitting math is not as easy as it seems, friends.
They were at the former daycare for 6 years with their older kids. That spoke volumes to me. It means: they get it. They hired me on the spot for next school year after I told them that I honestly just want to work with nice families who appreciate what I do. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: THIS AIN'T ROCKET SCIENCE. Having every slot filled for the fall meant I could relax in Europe, at least on the days when I was fed. More on that later.
When I described how Wil's family left for fear of Goddard germs, these sisters shook their heads. HOW SILLY. A bit later they asked me if I knew a particular family in the next culdesac. I was like YEP, THAT'S WIL'S GRANDMA. HE WAS GOING THERE ON THE DAYS HE ISN'T WITH ME. Both sisters chuckled. They know Wil's mother. They went to high school together. They again shook their heads. One of them was like NOT AT ALL SURPRISED. I almost hugged her, but didn't want to scare her away and end up with an open spot again.
I assumed Ricky wouldn't come back in the fall based on his mom telling me that she'd probably just send him to the all-day preK that his sister attends. After I was hired by the dynamic-sister-duo, I let Ricky's mom know that I probably wouldn't have space for him. She also wanted him at my house 5 days a week, which I was trying to avoid.
While in Europe, I saw Ricky's mom post on FB that she was looking for an in home daycare for Ricky and his sis after preschool. He'd qualified for the district preschool, meaning it's free and she was thinking of just sending him there vs the all day deal after all.
One mom, who used to cut my hair before I switched to the curly specialist who cuts Curly's hair, lives in our district. She commented on Ricky's mom's post. Guess who she recommended? ME. I felt like a turd. Like I'd sent Ricky's people packing. I msg'd Ricky's mom and said, IF YOU FIND SOMETHING, NO PROBLEM, BUT IF YOU WANT RICKY AND SIS TO GET OFF THE BUS AT MY HOUSE IN THE AFTERNOONS WE CAN WORK SOMETHING OUT. She and I chatted when I got back from Europe and sure enough, he and his 4 year old sister will get off the bus at my house 5 afternoons in the fall.
His sister has come to my house a few times this school year when her current preschool was closed. Let me paint a picture: mother-hen type who likes to read board books to babies and follow directions and keep everyone playing happily. Score. I should probably pay them to let me keep her here. Can you say, 4 YEAR OLD ASSISTANT? Plus one of the new 'sista' families has a 4 year old who doesn't nap. I love that I've already found a playmate for this little girl, and solved my HOW DO I KEEP NAP TIME AS A SACRED GET-THINGS-DONE TIME FOR ME problem?
How great that I'll be able to chill on the couch and eat bon bons, as you know that is my dream. The bummer: I was hoping to have Fridays off, but Annie (C and A's mom) needs care on Fridays. I've told her that I will watch her kids, but I'll plan to take off quite a few Fridays in order to visit my 3 college kids in the fall, or travel with Coach when he teaches, or just take a mental health day. Now I also have Ricky and my 4 yr old assistant Friday afternoons, but that mom also knows I plan to take off a pile of Fridays faster than you can say I NEED SOME ME TIME. At least there will be no infants on Fridays. Searching for the sliver lining here. Did ya notice?
My home will be crowded, assuming no one else quits. The youngest, El, will be a year end of June. This is what my fall looks like, at lunch time after Ricky and 4 year old assistant are back from preschool, I will have: 8 on Mondays, 7 on Tuesdays, 8 on Wednesdays, 5 on Thursdays, and 4 on my 'day-off' Fridays, subtract 2 preschool kids from each day to get my morning number, and subtract an additional one from Tues and Wed mornings as those are the days L and C will each attend a preschool.
You were warned, daycare math is hard.
You know what else is hard? Thinking about the math that will present itself after my retirement, because the funds will dry up. My focus right now: college tuition, but Mini's scholarship has helped a lot with that pressure. If Reg and Curly get the Evans or a partial sport scholarship, my saved funds will be reallocated. There will always be something, like weddings . . . down the road. Ed has told me that I could be done working sooner, which would be nice. But our couches are 16 years old. Plus, travel. See what I'm talking about?
Please let me know in the comments which day you'd like to visit me and my rascals in the fall for lunch, or if you'd prefer a live feed of the nonsense and good times. Is it wrong to pray that Finn is settled into a condo with Lad in the fall?