We last left off, I had another interview setup with a sweet old lady. I had intended to call around again and find another place to interview before that, but I never got around to it.
Let me start off by saying that this is the first time I've left the daycare hunt in God's hands. I know this sounds strange, but sometimes it is so easy for us to think that we must take care of things. Sometimes we don't. Sometimes God wants too. Normally I wouldn't recommend you wait so long to find care. Waiting lists can be lengthy and search can take forever. If you asked me, one mother to another, when a search should start I would advise that as soon as you are expecting you should start looking into it. This is especially true if you are looking to go to a center. It can take 1-2 years to get your kid into some of the more top notch places.
All that to say that I did this search very different from any of the previous child searches I've done. I went to God first and put the entire thing in His hands. He of course directed me and told me what I needed to do. And in this case, I waited to make phone calls. I waited until He told me I needed to start calling. Who knows why I needed to wait...other than there were preparations He made ahead of time for me.
I spent two afternoons making phone calls. I followed up on a few leads, as well as made a bunch of cold calls. I spent probably a total of 3 hrs in what I call research/phone call mode. I used the state referral service (which basically lists licensed providers by zip code). The information on the site shows the name, phone number, rates, hours and some other basics. There is no address and it is very very basic information.
I'm stressing that, because along with the fact that I spent so little time searching I am just floored that perfect place was found in the manner it was found. This is a God thing.
I went to this with an open mind. I knew I was excited so I did go in looking for something wrong. Mindset is important in any daycare search. If you are looking for something wrong, you will find it if it is there.
What I found was a sweet older couple. I won't say elderly, because they are only a little older than my folks. The gentleman is on permanent disability after 5 back surgeries. He helps out here and there. And she started doing daycare when her daughter was 2 or so. All the kids who her daughter played with went off to kindergarten and her daughter was lonely. A friend suggested she start a daycare, since she loved children so much anyway.
Carol held Ruth the entire time I was there at her request. She oogled over her and they were so genuine. We chatted about normal daycare stuff. And again, I can't capture for you their facial expressions or the tones in their voices, but they did tell me they hoped Ruth would come. Carol said she loved babies and that was why she continued to accept them. (Daycare fact: Childcare for babies is difficult to find. They are expensive to keep because of ratio counts and therefore are not very profitable. Many centers and home daycares do not accept babies.) They talked about how absolutely adorable she was.
And it wasn't just Carol. It was also her husband.
I am embarrassed to admit I didn't realize for the longest time he was talking to me. He is some-what cross eyed, and it was not immediately obvious to me. Once I figured that out, I just checked where his nose was pointed. I've run across a few people in my life who are cross-eyed, and this happens to me nearly every single time. You would think I'd learn my lesson?
Their house was clean. Small but clean. She talked about how she'd work in baby floor time and what sort of toys she had. The toys she had out were clean. Her house was clean.
There were a couple things I wasn't too sure about. The first was her schedule. She has a morning snack. That inherently isn't bad, but I'm just not big on morning snacks. Afternoon yes, morning not so much. Also, naptime there is from 2-4. This seems so very late to me. But with babies schedules don't matter quite as much. Ruth will eat when she is hungry and nap when she is sleepy. And when she turns 1, she will go to the center and her schedule will be closer to the other kids. Basically - I think this is workable. It isn't ideal, but workable.
One other thing was she seemed to use TV several times throughout the day. I think this is pretty common in HDC's though. It wasn't a ton and again for our purposes I think it is OK. (I'm pretty anti-TV.)
I came home from the interview and talked over everything with William. I wanted to be sure I wasn't missing anything and that I wasn't just excited about the location. The next morning I prayed about it during quiet time. And then when I had thoroughly analyzed everything I was confident this was the place.
So my daycare search is done. This is the shortest one ever. Rebekah's took about 6 weeks and when Peter was kicked out of his it took a solid month to find some place new for the kids. (Well, I had care for him immediately...but it took month for us to figure out our long term plans and to get Rebekah pulled.)
Whew. I am glad that is taken care of. One less thing for me to think about and another check mark done on my to do list. :-)