September is when I want to start sprinkling pumpkin spice on everything! I also like to spice up my fall wardrobe with a few new things.
If I was expecting, this henley midi dress from Old Navy would find its way into my wardrobe. This ribbed, stretchy dress has long sleeves, a V-neck, and shirred sides to accommodate your growing belly. Add a pair of suede boots and a shearling or plaid shacket for an apple picking excursion.
This dress is $44.99 at Old Navy (there’s always a coupon code or deal). It comes in sizes XS–XXL and is available in five perfect-for-fall colors.
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Sales of Note…
(See all of the latest workwear sales at Corporette!)
- Nordstrom – The Half-Yearly Sale has started! See our thoughts here.
- Ann Taylor – $50 off $150; $100 off $250+; extra 30% off all sale styles
- Banana Republic Factory – Up to 50% off everything + extra 25% off purchase
- Eloquii – 60% off all tops
- J.Crew – Up to 50% off “dressed up” styles (lots of cute dresses!); extra 50% off select sale
- J.Crew Factory – Up to 60% off everything; 60% off 100s of summer faves; extra 60% off clearance
- Loft – 40% off tops; 30% off full-price styles
- Lands’ End – 30% off full-price styles
- Talbots – 25-40% off select styles
- Zappos – 28,000+ sale items (for women)! Check out these reader-favorite workwear brands on sale, and some of our favorite kid shoe brands on sale.
- J.Crew – Up to 50% off kids’ camp styles; extra 50% off select sale
- Lands’ End – 30% off full-price styles
- Hanna Andersson – Up to 50% off summer pajamas; up to 50% off all baby styles (semi-annual baby event!)
- Carter’s – Summer deals from $5; up to 60% off swim
- Old Navy – 30% off your order; kid/toddler/baby tees $4
- Target – Kids’ swim from $8; summer accessories from $10
So like many people on here, after a long time of thinking about it, I switched from center based/school based childcare to in home childcare.
I’m only a few days in to the new setup; however, I’m shocked at how positive the very small changes have been for my general sanity. I went from 2 drop offs and 2 pick ups, one drop-off which required us to walk into the center and escort the child, 2 pickups which both required me to park and get everyone out of the car and into the building to collect the other child… to just… ‘Okay kids, have a great day!’
I was very worried about some things like oversight and having to self manage an employee, but… we were very clear with exactly our expectations and schedule, she was very clear with exactly what her needs and expectations were. I also have this added bonus where… because somebody is coming into my house, I’m finding myself doing a better job of being prepared with lunches and even buying healthier food (nobody should ever know how many hot dogs my kids ate during the pandemic…).
I feel like I cleaned up/bought healthy in the beginning but then she felt like family and she saw it all. When you get the right person it is really awesome.
I have four kids, so I have done/seen all the various iterations of childcare, and I have to say, finding the right person to provide in home care is the biggest gift I’ve ever received. She feels like having a close friend in my home who also loves my kids and takes care of laundry/home related tasks for me. It is literally a third parent to pitch in with all the things that happen around the house, easily switch between kids, and bonus that I never have to wrestle a toddler into clothing, then shoes, then a car seat to actually get out the door on time.
Do you mean you hired a nanny? That’s not the same thing as “in home child care…” Where I live, when people say “in home childcare” they mean a daycare provider in someone else’s home where a few kids are watched over by one provider, rather than a center with lots of different classes.
Mrs. Jones says
+1 A nanny is not the same as in home child care.
I was so confused by that too. Especially because she emphasized the daycare was center-based, which not all daycares are. I thought she was referring to switching from a daycare center to an in-home daycare provider and I was confused why she said “like many of you here…” (not that in-home daycare is bad! I just don’t think many people here use it.)
Oh sorry! Yes, nanny/au pair/sitter situation over here. Somebody who comes to my house and also shuttles my kids around to after school activities (so many of which start 15 minutes before I could actually get there).
Here, we call what you’re talking about home-based or family-based daycare.
I always think family based in a weird term for in-home since family-based sounds more like a nanny to me.
I have a 2nd grader in flag football on our city’s team. He was asked to sign up by a coach due to his size, and husband and I really hesitated because we are pretty anti-tackle football. Our son has really liked playing “football” in the backyard, where he’s always the superstar and can direct plays and do whatever he wants, basically. We (foolishly) thought that our son would try flag through this team, not like it for various reasons, and then we’d nip any dreams of football in the bud and then be able to steer clear of tackle football in any capacity.
Only problem is our son LOVES flag football now, and is very good at it. Probably because of his size for now, but he’s destined to be fairly tall and strong like his dad. If he does the same organization next year, it’ll be tackle. I am not one to think he’s a future NCAA/pro player, but eeeesh — are we still anti-tackle football? I am so anxious about concussion-related issues and this seems like a bad idea. But how bad can it be in elementary or middle school?
Concussion risk in youth football is very real. I would not allow my son to play tackle football even on an elementary team. Ymmv.
I would not allow it personally but I don’t judge other parents who do allow it. Can you channel it into other games? Lacrose maybe? IDK why it seems like it may appeal but maybe because it’s kind of “special” like football? i.e. not a definite every kid does it sport.
I would not let an elementary aged play tackle football. Is there a flag football organization he can play with for now?
+1 I’d look around for another organization. My son is pretty anti football right now but I oculd see that changing and I am dreadign having to figure it out. I let my daughter do ballet and gymanstics which aren’t great on your body at a certain point either!
It can be really bad! He’s 8? He can like something else.
There is no excuse for tackle football in elementary school. It’s dangerous and it isn’t necessary to the game. If that’s what this org is pushing, it’s not safe to trust them with your child.
I kind of agree with this, I was under the impression that Youth Football (writ large) had taken the research on concussions to heart and revamped its progression to delay introducing tackle until much later. 3rd grade seems way too young to introduce tackling! There are flag football leagues through high school in my area; I’d definitely look for a different program where he can continue flag football for another few years… or indefinitely.
I think the risk is the same, unfortunately. 9 seems really young for tackle football. I would push hard for other fall sports so you end up with a conflict. Soccer is at the same time, right? My giant son plays soccer and am hoping he continues to be interested.
Here the tackle youth league for preteens ended up getting cancelled. Not sure if it was due to Covid or parents no longer letting their kids play. Some parents were aggressively trying to recruit players but they were not successful.
My son is similar. One of our good friends advised not to let him play tackle football until high school because, since he’s big & strong, they might make him a linesman where the concussion risk is the highest. His skill will probably dictate a QB or receiver position if we wait til other kids catch up a little in size. My son is just doing pick-up flag football on the aftercare team, and it will always be flag football. That will get us through 5th grade, and I’m pretty confident he’ll have a different favorite sport during the football season and won’t agitate to join the school team.
Concussions are absolutely a thing in elementary and middle school tackle football, and I wouldn’t risk it at such a formative age for brain development.
Aside from the (major!) injury risks, there’s a real icky macho culture around football. I remember watching my very young nephew’s game once, and on the side lines a group of parents was cheering on a toddler boy chasing a toddler girl, laughing as the girl is crying and looking for help. That wasn’t on the field – but parents and environments that encourage harassment of children on the sidelines definitely encourage it with the players, too.
I know some coaches are great, many sports have problems, etc, but the power culture of football really cements my hard NO.
I have a 2nd grade son who also loves football, and based on his backyard antics, would also probably be pretty good. We do not let him play league football (like you, I was worried about concussions, and felt like flag would be a gateway to tackle). My biggest concern is that there is no way other 3rd grade kids will understand how to tackle. You will get much bigger kids in the league, and I’d be really concerned about the harm you are inviting with tackle. My similarly interested kid is thriving in baseball and lacrosse.
Tackle in 3rd grade??! Wow. Where I am in MA tackle starts in 6th so there is a lot of time to play flag and then drop before tackle.
I am a neurologist and I used to work with Ann McKee- I literally took calls from the families of dead athletes requesting autopsies. Hard no to tackle football in our house. Find another passion.
It can be really bad. I know more than one 6th grader that got a concussion in tackle, and our program converts to tackle in middle school.
I would never let an elementary schooler play tackle. Find another league that does flag longer or get another sport.
Context: my husband didn’t play football growing up (because his mom thought it was too violent – so started all the kids in martial arts instead). Ended up competing at a high level in mixed martial arts for several years in his 20s. Stopped competing after he got a concussion and couldn’t read for a week – figured that was a sign to get out! No lasting issues, but I imagine that would have been a different story if he’d had the same injury with a younger, developing brain.
Our son played flag football for 4 years and we vetoed tackle, notwithstanding the fact that he really wanted to do it. Not worth the risk. He’s playing baseball now.
Also, on the “how bad can it be?” question – a substantial portion of the injury risk in youth tackle football arises from kids not using proper tackling technique, so it actually can be quite bad.
Hi. We love watching NCAA/NFL in our house and yes, I’m fully aware that it’s very unliberal of me, and I think the NFL is problematic and imperfect. (I also eat ChickFilA, and vote solidly Dem.)
Jokes aside – DS #1 is 4.5 and has consistently shown an interest in football. We live in state where football is a big deal. I’m now considering flag football in the coming year or so. A quick google search showed me that many flag leagues – even those NFL sponsored – go through age 14 or so, and are co-ed which I love.
I will NOT ever consider tackle football (and I’m sure there are options in our area). We also have paused soccer for the summer/early fall (it’s too hot where we live) and I hope when that is back in the routine it’ll take the place of his football interest.
No way to tackle football at any age! I wouldn’t even allow flag football because the natural progression is to tackle football. Also, I’ve seen college kids play flag football and it looked an awful a lot like rugby. Maybe youth leagues are stricter.
Mrs. Jones says
I’ve had only a couple of hard-and-fast rules since our son was born, and one was: no tackle football. Another is no drum set.
Check rugby options as well. Our league does flags for quite a few years.
I’ve represented former NFL players in disability-related lawsuits and … never, never in a million years would I let my kids go down that path. These college-educated guys in the thirties can barely remember their kids names. The money wasn’t worth it and not a single one of them would do it again if they could turn back time.
Far short of the NFL, last week alone in my state there was a local kid who is in a coma with a serious TBI and another kid about 50 miles away who is now paralyzed from the chest down, both around 14 – 15 years old, both injured in practice (not even during the stress and competitiveness of a game). So. Not. Worth. The. Risk.
It’s going to be harder to pull it back from the game the longer you let him play.
I think it depends on where you are. I’m in Bay Area, and flag absolutely does not progress to tackle, but my brother is in the Midwest, and it does. FWIW, I was very clear with my kids when I signed up for flag that tackle was out of the question, and they are fine with it. They’re also terrible, so that helps.
Youth sports is a 19 billion dollar industry. Just straight up tell your kid he can’t play tackle football and explain the concussion/injury risk. He’s going to be upset. He’ll get over it. This is being a parent.
Agree with all the other replies here saying avoid tackle. But I’d caution that the alternatives can be bad, too. A cousin and nephew both did wrestling and suffered concussions. One had long term academic issues and another had short term issues that messed up his grades at a critical time for college admissions. “Just” lacrosse, “just” wrestling—they’re not necessarily better, just less we’ll documented because they don’t have the high-profile NFL cases.
The fact is that injuries & accidents are part of any sport, it’s just that football is far and away the worst for concussion incidence. If you don’t want your kids to get hurt at all, probably best to push them toward the arts and academics. :) The difference to me is that several people smashing into each other is part of every single play in football in a way that it’s not in most other sports. My kids play hockey, which makes me a little nervous, but at least there’s no checking until 14U, and even then, it’s not part of every play.
Actually statistically football isn’t that much higher concussion risk than the second and third highest concussion risk sports (girls soccer and boys hockey). “Overall, the data showed that the three sports with the highest concussion rates were:
Boys’ football, with 10.4 concussions per 10,000 athlete exposures.
Girls’ soccer, with 8.19 per 10,000 athlete exposures.
Boys’ ice hockey, with 7.69 per 10,000 athlete exposures.”
That is why I don’t let my kids play soccer or hockey either.
Does anyone have any experience with hypopressives? They seem to be pretty popular outside of the US for treating pelvic floor issues like POP. I’ve been to pfpt already with meh results. I found another pt locally that teaches hypopressives in conjunction with traditional pt. Evidence supporting them seems to be lukewarm at best but there is not a great deal of research out there to begin with. Was curious to see if anyone is a fan.
My daughter wants a Halloweeen party. She won’t stop asking, so I am considering. Has anyone ever done this? What did you do? She’s a 4th grader and I am terrible at these type of things,
Younger kids but we have been throwing Halloween parties for the last couple of years. We do them outside and invite parents, too — firepit, candy hidden around the yard, maybe some spooky sounds from a speaker, a few jack-o-lanterns. Very low-key. Last year a parent brought a thermos of whiskey hot cider, which was lovely.
We have gone to two versions of this. One is lots of kids in the park. Everyone is in costume and every family brings treats/drinks. You can have everyone trick or treat”blanket to blanket,” if your kid is into that. This is something that is easy to coordinate with their class or another parent.
We have also had friend do this at home. If you have a backyard, you can do pumpkin carving. Everyone dresses in costume, you have food that is on theme (my kids love the “mummy” hot dogs) and everyone eats too much candy while parents drink pumpkin beer.
Mary Moo Cow says
I’m planning a Halloween party for the first time this year, but my kids are early elementary school. We’re doing it on a Sunday late afternoon, keeping to an hour and a half, having a photo backdrop and a few games (Halloween theme musical chairs. wrap the mummy, and monster bean bag toss). I’m planning on playing Halloween music and low key snacks (pre-packaged chips, some fruit, some veg, and pumpkin cake pops, and lemonade dyed green.) Decor will be pretty simple, maybe some orange/black/white balloons, a banner or two. The Spruce has some really cute party ideas. For 4th grade, I think you could do a bit scarier/spookier.
Less fun perhaps than the other poster, but cuold you coordinate to trick or treat with another family? We do that every year – trick or treat with family friends then go back to their house and eat pizza and hand out candy together. It’s a fun tradition! (the trick or treating on their street is better than ours)
Pick a day and send out invites!
I feel like 4th grade is old enough that you don’t have to invite parents and she can take the lead on planning? Obviously with some assistance from you.
+1. Ask your daughter what she wants to do!
+2. This is also the age when a whole pack of kids trick-or-treats together, so that could be the main activity for the party.
Some ideas we’ve had (I have a 3rd grader turning 9 on 10/28):
Obviously not all of them at the same party!
Make the garage a haunted house
Bobbing for donuts
Fire pit w/ s’mores
Fun themed food (daughter went wild on Pinterest)
Halloween movie shown outside
Face painting if kids aren’t coming costumed
Games with Halloween themed or candy prizes
Music- she already found several pandora stations
We host an annual Halloween party on the actual night of Halloween. We do an open house from 1630 onward and provide chili with all the fixings and the parents socialize while some accompany kids, the after trick or treating we do sparklers (we aren’t allowed fire works). We figure the kids always do better when they eat a proper meal first and folks are rushed so everyone appreciates it and we have a really nice time catching up with all the neighbours and parents.
Gradual potty training? says
Has anyone here done a more gradual potty training approach? Any tips I need to know? My literally-just-turned-two-year-old has been mildly interested in going potty for awhile, has sometimes been able to tell us when she needs to go #2, and announced yesterday that she had to go potty out of the blue and was obsessed all day (and did go #2 in the potty twice). She did that again this morning. I obviously want to encourage this, but DH and I are both in a chaotic crunch time at work, so we don’t have time to do any of the fast-track methods for another probably two months. Everyone I know who’s had a kid in the last 10 years has done one of the fast methods (with varying amounts of success.)
Following! My 21 month old started pulling off his diaper after he poops and I really cannot deal with it.
It sounds like she’s ready!
gradual potty training sounds like torture to me. I’d just wait two months! I mean, you could let her go in the potty sometimes but not drop the diapers I guess?
If you have parental coverage during a weekend I think you could swing starting and then let childcare reinforce it all week, if you really don’t want to delay. I felt like some of the guidance in books like Oh Crap was a bit over the top
NOVA Anon says
What is your childcare situation? If you have support from child care provider, I say do it now — you don’t need time for the fast track method if she’s all about #2 in the potty. If she already has interest and ability to put #2 in the potty, then you may be able to quickly #1 train.
With my DD (second child), she potty trained at one week less than two years old, in a day. She did first #2 in the potty at 14 months old (after telling us she needed to), did it every once in a while after that, and then around 20 months began telling us fairly consistently when when she had to #2 so she could do it in the toilet. We surmise she didn’t like the feeling of #2 in her diaper. We tried the pants-less method for day one of MLK weekend, but she refused to be without pants and insisted on underwear after roughly 10 minutes. So we put her in underwear first day of MLK weekend; after about a half day she got hang of telling us when she needed to do #1 in the potty too. So my point is if kid is ready and interested, it may not take as long. With DS (oldest), it did take a full long weekend of the intensive method, but he had shown interest in #1 but zero interest in #2 in the toilet.
To clarify, DH and I are each working 60+ hrs/week on nonprofit salaries, and we have one set of elderly relatives in the middle of a health crisis and another in the middle of moving. We have zero outside support right now, so the thought of having a kid spend a weekend peeing all over the floors is torture.
I wouldn’t do gradual. I’d just do a traditional method. Take her to the potty every time she wakes up, about 10 minutes after meals, and before you leave the house. Set a timer and take her to go potty every hour (extend this to 1:30 and then 2 hours once she’s consistent). Celebrate every time she goes successfully. You can have a dance party or give her a couple of M&Ms. Make sure her childcare during the day is on board. Mine did “potty buddies” and both kids had to try to go potty anytime one of them had to go.
Try for a week and see how it goes. If she’s ready you’ll see progress. I wouldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth if she’s doing #2 on the potty–that’s amazing.
We sort of did this. We were on vacation at my in-laws’ house when my then 2 year old started being really interested in going pee in the potty. We had a 8-10 hour drive home so we definitely weren’t potty training then. Initially, we just took her when she told us she had to go, then a few weeks later we started asking her if she needed to go potty and to try before we left the house, but kept her in pullups (which she was in before anyways because we found them easier to change). Then, when it suited our schedule we switched from pullups to underwear. I think it was about 4-6 weeks from when she really showed interest to when we actually switched to underwear. We gave her about a weeks notice and she helped pick out some underwear so she was excited to switch to her big girl underwear. And then at the weekend we switched. It worked really well for us and she had pretty much no accidents because she was used to going on the potty already. She’s now 3 and it seems fine – we haven’t had any regressions despite having a new baby. I’ll say that she is still in pullups for naps and nights but she has yet to wake up from a nap dry or night dry so I don’t think she is ready yet. My guess is she’ll stop napping before she is dry for naps and then maybe around 4-5 we will try to night train.
Thanks, this is reassuring and sounds doable!
I think the gradual approach is much more doable if you have a nanny or a SAHP. Most working parents I know did the fast/long weekend method because daycares tend not to be as attentive as the gradual method requires. They either want kids to be potty trained or not and aren’t super supportive of the in-between stage. There are exceptions, of course, and maybe your daycare is one of those! Personally, though, I’d just wait two months. Just-turned-two is pretty young.
She’s at a daycare center, but they are extremely supportive of following the parents’ lead for things like this, and her teacher is on board. I agree that just turned 2 is young – we thought this would be something for the break week after Christmas or MLK weekend! Definitely not now!
Yes! We did and it was awesome. I had some friends that were super into getting their kids potty trained as Sol a s possible and did the oh crap method. I got the book and reading that book was one of the most stressful things I’ve ever read, so I knew that approach wouldn’t work for us. Our son also does not like to be surprised/have things just thrust upon him, so slow and steady and lots of advance notice/explaining all the steps works best for us. Also, I refused to use a “little potty” because I didn’t want to clean it or carry it around wherever we went. DH and I agreed that if we absolutely needed to, we would get a little potty, but we didn’t think it was necessary and after reading a lot about them, don’t think that the reasons people use them make a lot of sense with our approach to parenting. Also, everyone we know who has used one has kids that are afraid of big toilets in Public restrooms, even years later, so they can’t take the kids out for long periods of time because their 6 year old can’t use bathrooms at a restaurant/museum/park etc. since it has a big potty. Or they have to bring the little potty for their 5/6 year old.
My son was also the second youngest in his daycare class. So, he saw the “older” kids using the potty and would occasionally sit on it at school. We started putting him on the potty at night while we filled up the bathtub and sometimes he would go, sometimes he wouldn’t. He was still in diapers this whole time. Then, after like 3 months of this, we picked a weekend when we’d fully transition to underwear during the day. We went and got fun character underwear for him and talked all about how that was what we were going to wear when we were awake. By now, he’s about 2 and 9 months and we just put him on the potty every hour for that weekend. Also, he just wore underwear and pants, we didn’t do the “naked weekend” approach. Again, that seems too intense and unnecessarily stressful for us.
We had maybe two accidents that weekend, and he had two at school the following week and then went down from there. Also, because we use a step stool and potty seat on the big potty, we had had no issues with using big potties out and about.
“Or they have to bring the little potty for their 5/6 year old. ”
This seems like an exaggeration. I had a kid who was very, very scared of the potty to the point that she would hold her pee for insane amounts of time and was unable to go in even the little potty until she was 3.75. She switched to the real toilet at home and school within a couple months and within another few months was using public toilets. It wasn’t the easiest or most fun process, but we got there way before age 5 and I don’t know anyone who had as tough a time with fear of toilets as we did.
I’m not saying don’t use the big toilet if your kid is willing – that does seem simpler. But if your kid will only use the little potty it’s not going to cause years-long issues.
Boston Legal Eagle says
“But if your kid will only use the little potty it’s not going to cause years-long issues.” – Agree. Both my kids started on the little potty and can use public restrooms just fine now at 6 and almost 4. The little one closes his ears around public potties, but that’s pretty common.
Yeah – the comment above you is a little weirdly judgy.
yes, my kid also used the little potty and preferred it for #2 for some time, but he also was fine going in public restrooms or at school when he knew it wasn’t an option.
That is an odd comment. I’m not saying that hasn’t happened in the history of kids; but my daughter is 6 and the idea of any same aged kid in our realm only using little potties or still refusing to go on a big one in public would be really bizarre (absent other sensory issues beyond the scope of just this one issue, I presume).
Thanks! Kiddo is the oldest in her class, but not by much, and she spends a lot of time with the 2.5s/3s on the playground, so my guess is that this is where her motivation is coming from.
Given your time constraints and her age, for now I’d just put her in pull-ups instead of diapers, but not underwear, and let her take the lead. Maybe she will self-train just on #2 and that alone would be awesome!
Different things work for different kids. One of my kiddos we tried the ‘oh crap’ method, we started too young, then he was potty trained, then there was a life event and suddenly he wasn’t, then at a totally normal age (2 years, 9 months) he was just… fully potty trained. Night trained and nap trained when he turned 3.
I stressed a lot. It worked out.
Then I had a kid who just… did not like the sensation of being wet. Ever. Started telling me when she was wet at 18 months. Started asking to sit on the potty for fun at 20 months and reliably using it before bath time/pajamas time. We put her in pull ups but… I don’t think she had more than 2 accidents once she turned 2. Difficult child in general but INCREDIBLY easy to potty train.
Kid #3 – has reliably told us when they’re going #2 since they were 18 months. Likes the potty ritual, does not produce when seated… until yesterday when kid (at 2.5) told us ‘I pee’, sat on the potty, and peed. And then did it again this morning. And now I have NO IDEA what the next step is, but it’s fine because it’ll work out. I think I’ll do gradual again.
Our youngest toilet trained super casually over 6-9 months. We put her in pull ups, had her sit on the toilet a couple times a day (often when I went to the bathroom), got really excited if she actually did pee. Because she was in a pull up, it was easy if she did want to use the potty but also fine if she didn’t and just peed in the pull up. She was fully toilet trained a couple months before she turned three. We weren’t impatient to be out of diapers, so this worked for us. It was a lot less clean up than our son who we did the no underwear over a week method when he was 3.5.
Tell me more about your 3.5 year old. We’ve been struggle bussing for what seems like forever and I let him go back to pull ups because 3+ accidents a day was making us all crazy. He’ll sit on the potty and then have an accident ten minutes later.
We’re also in a testing boundaries/not listening cycle which is just all around not working.
That does sound hard!
For us, it was the pandemic and I was unemployed so I figured that I might as well make a concentrated effort since he was already 3.5. We hadn’t even attempted toilet training with him before. We did a week of no bottoms which was fine, if messy, then transitioned to just pants. Adding underwear led to accidents so we went back to just pants and he was 4.5 before he could reliably wear underwear, and even then it was motivated by the fact that his pre-school reopened and they said he had to wear underwear. He is now in kinder and still has accidents more often than I like, but it’s more a personality thing than a physical thing; he’s a shy kid and doesn’t like asking to go to the bathroom.
I feel like the hardest thing is figuring out if you have a kid who you can just tell to sit on the potty at regular intervals or if a more hands off approach is better. Both methods are stressful for different reasons.
I feel like pull ups are a great solution.
First time posting on the moms site! Can anyone share their thoughts on daycare vs nanny? DH and I just moved to a new city this summer and I’m around 9 weeks pregnant. I know we will need to start looking at daycares early if that’s the route we want to go.
Our situation: I will be WFH, with occasional work travel. DH is a physician with very little flexibility in his schedule, but works 8-5, but I would be the main person handling any day care drop off or pick up. We have plenty of room in our house for me to have my own space if we had a nanny. We have an anxious dog that takes time to get used to strangers (but I could keep her with me while WFH). Our parents live within 2 hours away, retired, and would be willing to help us, but I don’t want to rely on them for regular childcare.
Any insight would be much appreciated!
We have a nanny. Currently one child (turns 2 month month), expecting second child in January.
I’m older (42) and honestly didn’t want to be away from my kid/kids all day. I love that I have regular interaction with my daughter, that I could nurse her instead of pumping, that we don’t have the logistics of drop offs/pickups/packing lunches/sending in spare clothes/etc. Also love that we weren’t impacted by Covid issues. My office is next door to the nursery.
I’m WFH (SVP at a F500). My husband is in academia. No local family and our dog is a typical lab that loves having more people around.
Only “downside” is the expense (we are in a HCOL adjacent burb and pay roughly $80k/year, between nanny’s on-the-books salary, our tax expenses, worker’s comp and disability insurance, HomePay fees, Christmas bonus and Christmas/birthday gifts, etc. But it is worth it to us and we can afford it (and I understand that it is a privilege to be able to do so).
Boston Legal Eagle says
We’ve only ever done daycare for two kids but here are my pro/con lists:
Pros of Daycare/Cons of Nanny:
– Multiple providers so there is less of chance of being out of childcare if nanny is sick/out of town
– Out of the house so you don’t have to worry about being in the same space as kiddo
– No managing of an employee – if you have a self motivated nanny, this is less of an issue, but some require lots of hand holding
– Cost!! (still expensive, but can be half of a nanny)
Cons of Daycare/Pros of Nanny:
– Pick ups and drop offs, which means getting kiddo ready in the morning while you’re also getting ready
– More sick days, especially when kiddo starts, so you’ll need to have lots of back (grandparents are nice for this)
– Less personalized attention, which can lead to fewer/worse naps
A lot of people try nanny shares if they want a little more personalized attention, although if it’s at someone else’s house, you still have to deal with drop offs and pick ups, and also dealing with another family’s parenting expectations.
Given your situation though, since you will have to do all pick ups and drop offs (I would not recommend this – that’s a lot on one parent), and you have occasional work travel, a nanny probably makes sense if you can afford it and are comfortable with having an employee in your house.
we have twins and no local family and DH travels a ton for work, so a nanny was a no brainer for us. i know LOTS of people who love daycare and LOTS of people who love having a nanny. like everything in life there are pros and cons to each. in my opinion, i think a good, reliable nanny is awesome for the first two years, but the key being someone who is good and reliable, and not all nannies are created equal.
I’m the mom of 4 above, and I’ll share my insight. We’ve had all forms of childcare, and if I were you, I’d put the time in now to find a great nanny. My husband works a big job with lots of travel, and I WFH part time, so I am the primary parent. It is lovely to have another person around to rely on since my husband isn’t typically able to jump in and help with drop off or pick ups or after school activities. The only time I really resented my husband was when we had a kid in daycare, and I was doing drop offs and pick ups, but I also felt like there was also just so much extra “prep” work for daycare that fell to me since I was the default “knower” of what was needed (since I did all the drop offs, I knew when the diapers were running out, when we needed more milk, etc., so I became the default parent for all the extras too).
With a nanny, you’ll also get to see your baby a lot more than you would otherwise since you’ll be WFH. I also “lost” like a full 2 hours a day when I was getting kids ready for school, driving them to school, then driving home, and repeating in the afternoon. Now, I can sit down to work as soon as our nanny arrives, and she jumps in to get them ready for school or classes or activities. It gets a little tricky when you have an older toddler at home with you, but ideally, you’ll have had your nanny for a few years, so your kiddo will be fairly agnostic between either of you. It ends up being more expensive, and you’ll theoretically need to do more a la carte activities – but my excellent nanny has always found those for us (and knows how to find free activities at libraries/museums, etc.). Again, going back to being a primary parent, our nanny comes when I wouldn’t be able to send a kid to daycare and would have to take off work.
I’ve always done a trial period with a nanny though (weekend days works great) before hiring them on full time. I find you have to click with the person because they will be in your home with you. We had a very short lived nanny who we terminated for safety reasons, but who I just didn’t like being around. I shouldn’t have hired her on that basis alone.
Having your child at home as you work can be a source of stress, especially when they are young and you feel guilty overhearing them cry and feel the urge to step in and address their needs. But then again, some people actually prefer this setup. It might be hard to predict ahead of time. Would you like to hire and manage your own employee, or does relying on a system already in place (i.e. daycare center) sound more appealing? Unless you hire an all-star nanny, I think you may encounter pros and cons either way.
Eh, I didn’t really have this issue, so I think it really depends on the person. Also our nanny likes to take the kids out of the house a lot, so it wasn’t like the baby was crying six feet from me all day (just part of the day). I think the biggest issue I had wfh w/ baby (whether it was my mom, husband or nanny w/ baby) is that of course I preferred not to pump if I didn’t have to, but then I would get stressed trying to time nursing sessions w/ meetings etc. But I could have totally just pumped and let whoever was on duty give a bottle.
Don’t have underestimate daycare illnesses. They can be extremely disruptive to your schedule, but can also take out you and your husband for months on end. We had a six week stretch with the flu (with a hospitalization), pneumonia, hand foot and mouth, pink eye, two separate stomach viruses, strep, multiple ear infections and at least one awful cold. I thought I was dying. Work was ready to fire us both. We never ever came close to this with a nanny or elementary school–kids by then are mostly smart enough not to lick each other’s snot. I think this is all doubly true was we exit covid and kids haven’t built up their immune systems and daycare are hyper reacting to every sniffle or cough.
As a counterpoint, daycare and nanny were fairly comparable in terms of days missed for us. Daycare was more kid illness, but nanny had more provider illness + random days off. I got sick frequently my kid’s first winter in daycare but it was really only a few months of awfulness and now we rarely get sick. Covid policies are definitely something to ask about, but ours is back to pre-Covid rules and has been for about a year: kids are only excluded for things like fever, rash and vomiting. They can go to school with runny noses and coughs. My kid has had cold after cold for the last month or so (combo of new school year + Labor Day travel to friends with daycare kids) but she hasn’t missed a single day of school and I haven’t caught any of it.
The point was that you can skip the “few months of awfulness” that are typical in the first winter (if not first two winters and some springs, summers and falls). People always say you have to do it eventually to build their immune system, but IMO there’s a big difference between a sick 4-6 month old and a sick 5 yo. The first is likely to end up in the ER with a high fever and being held all night. The later may wake up but will likely go back to sleep without too much fuss.
We also did a nanny with my second and we never ever had the same number of illnesses as we did with my oldest in daycare. Somehow her immune system still matured. Lots of things, like strep and HFM, can be caught multiple times so you ultimately save a lot of misery by avoiding daycare plagues.
Eh, I agree that it’s easier on the kid to get sick at 3 year old vs 3 months old, but I’m not sure it makes a difference in how often the parents get sick or how much time you have to take off work for doctor’s appointments. The people I know who didn’t do daycare just went through the few months of awfulness when their kid started preschool or elementary school.
I think it depends on a lot of factors including the genetics/immune system of you and your kids. From talking to friends and reading here I feel like we had a pretty middle of the road experience starting at 15 months – pretty much non-stop illness the first fall and winter with some bigger thingslike croup and RSV in the mix, but no serious illness and things got much better as soon as the first winter was behind us. I have friends whose kids get ill more frequently for a longer period of time or more severely ill, but I also know people whose kids didn’t get sick at all. So much of it depends on the immune system of your kid. Mine, for example, has never gotten a stomach bug (knock on wood) but until she was 2+ every single cold turned into an ear infection. My best friend’s kids have never had an ear infection but seem to get stomach bugs monthly. Just depends so much on the kids.
Personally, I wouldn’t avoid daycare just because of fear of illness. If you start in daycare and feel like the amount of illness is overwhelming, you can always switch to a nanny then.
Look at daycares and trust your gut. If you find one you love, go for it. If you don’t, start exploring nannies. There is such huge variation in daycare quality and fit that I think it’s tough to make this call unless you have concrete options in front of you (because we have moved a few times, my kids have gone to several daycares, and the difference between the worst and best ones is just ENORMOUS).
I think this is a valid point. There’s no wrong answer; we’ve used (and still do) various combinations of care over the years and personally I lean more nanny/nanny share/in-home daycare with a very little one (where they get held more, have a consistent caregiver all day every day, are strolled outside, nap in their own room) and more center-based as they are older. I also feel like the pros I just listed can be found at some really good centers (including the independent one we used for our oldest from 2.5-5).
And a nanny is like any employee – ours was SO GOOD, she had the right mix of initiative (like if I didn’t meal plan, she would pick something that could be made from what we had and go for it without bothering me) with rule-following (I gave her schedule for nap/no nap days when our oldest was transitioning, and she stuck to the schedule w/ military precision). My husband would get annoyed about random things like how she loaded the dishwasher, so if you are really particular about housekeeping it might be stressful. And of course, if you get someone w/ drama in their life – ours had the smallest amount, but I could see it easily veering into stressful territory.
Congrats! It’s a very individual decision that depends on your personalities and the nature of your jobs. For us, with fulltime but flexible jobs (professor + university staff), daycare at the university has been orders of magnitude better than a nanny was. Hiring a good nanny is definitely a skill not everyone has, and I don’t think I possess it. We thought we had someone really great and she turned out to be not a good fit for our family in several ways (for example, was very uncomfortable about my husband WFH even though we’d disclosed in the hiring process that he did this frequently). Daycare directors are experts at hiring and managing teachers, and while I won’t say I’ve loved every daycare teacher we’ve ever had, we’ve adored at least 80% of them and the other 20% of them have been fine – I think it would be very hard to hit that threshold with nanny hiring, unless you have waaay more talent for it than I do. Hiring issues aside, I didn’t love having someone in my personal space (I’m very introverted) and didn’t like having to manage an employee. Drop offs for us have been much easier with daycare than nanny. I think it’s easier for my kid to leave rather than be left, if that makes sense, and all the new toys at daycare help distract her (to this day at almost 5, it’s much easier to leave her in a new place if there are toys, lol). Cost is a big factor in favor of daycare, especially if you only have one child. Our daycare is the most expensive in our county and even the infant room at daycare was less than half what we paid a nanny. Once you have two or more children, then a nanny becomes a lot more worth it, because daycare costs are pretty much linear per child (you’d be lucky to get a 5-10% discount on the second child) whereas nanny costs aren’t. Definitely tour daycares and see how you feel. We saw several daycares we didn’t feel great about leaving an infant at, which is part of what motivated us to get a nanny, but when we toured our current place it was very different and we both immediately felt like we would have been totally comfortable leaving a 3 month old there, which has only been further confirmed now that we’ve been customers there for years.
Also I want to gently push back on the idea that you’ll do all dropoffs or pickups. If he’s ending his workday at 5 pm, there’s no reason he can’t do daycare pickups. Agreeing to do all the daycare pickup and dropoffs seems like it’s going to set a bad pattern, unless you’ve agreed in advance that you’re going to do the vast majority of parenting and you’re both on board with that.
This is super personal – are you willing to be an employer? Can you handle missing work regularly for kids’ sick days? Do you prefer to up and out in the morning or not? We’re hardcore daycare parents but we just really didn’t want to be employers and thought it’s not fun we can handle lots of sick days.
I’d recommend doing whatever you have to do to get on daycare waiting lists now. Right away. I had severe morning sickness and waited until 15-16 weeks to get on daycare, and we defaulted to a nanny because we didn’t get off any daycare waiting lists. Some areas are better than ours, but some are worse. If you decide on a nanny, the daycare won’t have any trouble filling the spot.
That said, we had a wonderful experience with a nanny for my son’s first year. I know it doesn’t always work out, but when it does, it can be great. There are fewer transitions, so overall just easier mornings. A nanny can take care of other child-related things, like laundry and organizing and washing bottles and making baby food, while the baby naps. And a nanny can start to feel like part of the family. (We’re still friends with ours, 7 years later.) A nanny will likely have to call out if she’s sick, but she can come if the baby has a minor illness.
Daycare is less expensive for one child. It’s a more professional setting, which means issues can often be managed through a director. You’re not relying on one person to be on time, not call in sick, etc. But you need a backup plan for the days when your own child is sick, which is a lot the first year of daycare. I’m a strong proponent of at least part-time daycare as kids get older for the socialization and group setting, but I don’t think that’s important the first year or two.
If you do go the daycare route, if you’re doing drop-off and pickup, your husband should be responsible at least for getting the baby ready for daycare in the morning and for packing everything needed for daycare. Being responsible for drop-off and pickup is a lot–our daycare was 5 minutes away from our house, and either drop-off or pickup could easily take 20-25 minutes roundtrip. I don’t see why he couldn’t drop the baby off before 8 or pick the baby up after 5 though.
+1 on getting on lists now. You are not obligated to take a spot if offered – you are just preserving your options. And not to scare you, but the child care provider shortage is real — you may be forced into an option because it’s the only one available to start. And that’s okay – part of being a parent is rolling with the punches.
I am the one who posted of and accidentally used ‘in home childcare’ to mean nanny. Short version: What works for you now may change in the future. It did for me.
We always used a beloved daycare center. They were fantastic when my kids were babies. I loved having the kids close to me at work, it was great. And then… COVID was hard. Sickness after COVID was really REALLY hard.
Husband is in a similarly inflexible job which includes work travel – I have always been the default all the pickups and drop offs… but somehow, every time I had a kid I ended up getting a promotion. So now I also have a big job. I found the balance shifted when we still had kids in daycare but also have an elementary school aged kid. The juggle with before and after care and school days off was what shifted the balance for us. I just… stopped being able to make it all work this year.
My biggest were concerns were that I didn’t want to be an employer. We ended up using an agency/service who pretty much gave us a packet and said ‘this is the paperwork’. I was also very concerned about socialization, but now that my kids are older they’re in school/preschool/nursery school during the day. We also found a nanny who is friends with a mutual friends’ nanny. So very frequently, they’re doing events with 2 adults and 4 children. It makes everybody really happy and honestly? It alleviates a concern I had about somebody being alone in my house with the children all day.
Thank you to all who commented and shared their thoughtful insight! You’ve given me and DH a lot to think about. As for assuming the role of pick up/drop off, we haven’t done any research and assumed there wouldn’t be options for him to drop off at 7 and pick up at 6, which is what he’d need for commute.
Follow up question to those with nanny’s – is it typical for the cost to be $80k/year? I knew it was more expensive than daycare, but was pretty surprised to hear that high of a figure from one of the posters.
7-6 are pretty standard daycare hours, actually. Most centers are open 55 hours/week.
Nanny cost will depend on cost of living. I think $80k is fairly common in HCOL areas. We paid ~$40k in a LCOL college town, but that was still more than double infant daycare at the priciest daycare in our area ($18k) and toddler/preschool daycare costs considerably less than infant daycare, so daycare costs will go down over time while nanny costs normally go up due to inflation and raises. But of course if you know you want 2 or 3 kids fairly close in age then it’s a different story since a nanny doesn’t charge double for watching two kids and daycare essentially does.
Boston Legal Eagle says
Our center is open 7am-5pm, and was 7am-6pm pre-Covid and pre-staffing shortages. So it’s possible to do the early drop off. You may not want your kid in there for the full 11 hours, but 7:30am-5:30pm is what a lot of people do.
As for nannies, again, haven’t had one, but in my HCOL area, on the books (which you should do) will probably run you $65-75K for someone good with experience, and would need to provide days off and bonuses. Remember that you are this person’s sole income. Daycare allows you to pool with others, so it’s less expensive (although caregivers themselves likely don’t get paid enough, but that’s a whole different issue). I just checked and our daycare, for one infant at the maximum hours, is a bit under $30K. So roughly double for nanny.
Legally, nannies should be paid on the books, but many, many people I know pay their nannies cash. In fact, at least in our area (NYC) it can be harder – but definitely not impossible – to find nannies that want to be paid on the books. The out of pocket is much lower if you’re paying cash.
Most people we know have one parent handle drop off and one pick up so the hours would just need to work on one end for him (i.e. drop off at 7 or pick up at 6).
An aside and feel free to ignore if it doesn’t work for you: but I’m a physician and do daycare drop off Every. Darn. Day. (I agree it’s hard to get out on time so I can’t/don’t do pick ups). I also can’t do the emergency sick days, but I do get a lot of time off so I CAN do all the routine days off (daycare holidays, doctors appointments etc) as long as I have 45+ days of notice. I definitely encourage physician spouses to expect them to pick up some of these burdens- most of us physicians are perfectly capable of doing so!
+1. My transplant surgeon SO does ~30-40% of daycare drop-offs/pick-ups. Our daycare hours are only 7:30-5:30. All the parents in scrubs bond while they gather at the door at 7:29.
Congrats! Consider an au pair if you have an extra room in your house. It’s much cheaper than a nanny because you provide room and board. If a nanny seems like a good fit (you don’t mind managing someone, okay with someone being in the house, etc.), you have crossed some of the hurdles for an au pair as well. In comparison to friends with nannies, our au pair is so much more reliable (e.g., no snow days!). The number one question I get is what about the “off time” – will she hang around you on nights and weekends? In our experience, no! Mid-thirties parents might as well be crypt keepers to 22 years olds. Our au pairs take advantage of off-time to hang with friends (mostly other au pairs), take road trips, explore new places, go to the gym or the mall. If you’re interested, post again and I’ll share the pros and cons.
does anyone know what is usually inside of weighted blankets? i bought two for my twins from Target and the item seems to be out of stock online, so I can’t read the description, but one of their beds feels like it has sand on it all of the time, and I’m guessing it is from the blanket or a stuffed animal, and I am trying to figure out which. Any suggestions as to how to figure it out? also, why must Target be out of the blanket – do you think I could buy a different brand weighted blanket and switch out the cover?
I think it’s the blanket, maybe leaking from the seams. Could you put it in a duvet cover?
I think the weighted blankets are usually filled with glass beads, not as small as sand.
WWYD? We booked a spring break vacation months ago and just found out that our direct flights have been canceled. Instead, United is putting us on connecting flights that will add hours of travel time. The flights we were on were the only direct flights available to this destination. Once we arrive, it’s kind of complicated to get to our resort (long drive or island hopper plane). Would you cancel the trip? We have two toddlers and… yeah, you all know what that means.
Oof, that stinks! Do they no longer offer the route? I’d cancel, that sounds miserable.
I’m assuming this is a Caribbean island? I don’t mind layovers with toddlers in general, but the combo of layover + long drive or island hopper plane seems a bit rough, especially when there are so many great places in the Caribbean that can be reached by a direct flight from most major airports including many of the best (IMO) islands like Turks and Caicos. Are you sure there aren’t flights on a different airline? Generally Delta and American have much better service to the Caribbean than United because of their southern hubs in Atlanta and Miami (I say this as UA Premier Platinum, so we always fly United…) Many airlines only fly to the Caribbean on Saturday…so if you’re not already going Saturday to Saturday maybe you could switch your dates to get a direct flight?
How long are you staying? Is there enough time to recover and enjoy the vacation, or will you have to turn around soon after arriving?
Is there an alternative, similar destination with a direct flight, like a Caribbean Island? Or a totally different location you were also considering? Anything in driving distance?
Would totally depend on the destination for me. There are destinations I would do this kind of travel to get to, but many I would not.
+1. Totally depends on the location, and also how long you’re planning to stay. If this is somewhere in the Caribbean, I would pick a different island that has a direct flight.
I would cancel or check whether I could use a different airline. I live in Houston and United is the new Spirit airlines.
United is nothing like Spirit.
Any other moms of tweens dealing with dress code and fashion issues? Our daughter started a new school this year, as a middle schooler. Her prior school required uniforms – her new one has a dress code. The dress code isn’t overly burdensome (no athletic t-shirts or athletic shorts, no sleeveless or spaghetti-strap tops, no visible midriff, pants must be at waist, skirts or shorts must be at least fingertip length, no leggings unless you’re wearing something over them that meets the fingertip test, no t-shirts with images), but we are really struggling to find clothes that our daughter wants to wear that meet those requirements. The specific issue is basically that holy crap, the fashion right now for girls seems to be for SUPER short skirts/dresses/shorts. We have found like 3 skirts that she doesn’t find to be completely unfashionable, and no shorts. And she doesn’t want to wear jeans. SIGH. It makes me wish she were still in uniforms…
Clothes shopping for tweens is just awful, dress code or not. Tweens are incredibly picky and change their minds every other week. Few retailers sell anything that is either age-appropriate or properly sized and shaped. I would just let her deal with having a very small wardrobe. IME even if they have a lot of clothes they like, they will only wear their three very favorite things anyway. You might be able to get her interested in a capsule wardrobe concept.
And on a random note, the no t-shirts with images rule seems like it could be the most annoying. In middle school a lot of kids live in the souvenir t-shirts and sweatshirts from their sports tournaments.
Yeah, the no-images rule just sounds awful. I mean, i get the spirit of it, nobody has to make a judgement call, but sheesh.
My tween’s answer to that dress code would be an oversized hoodie (super soft to make up for no images) and leggings, every day. Super oversized i suppose, to meet the fingertip rule. In warmer weather i suspect her answer would be oversized plain tee /tunic tee with leggings.
My only suggestions: baggy jeans? Can she wear a solid color shirt with a big necklace to jazz it up? Shop at stores you would not normally go to for her… one of my tween daughter’s favorite shirts is from Talbots lol.
If athletic shorts are not allowed, are sweatpants or joggers okay?
Signed, very unfashionable mom glad that our school has uniforms
My almost-tween inherited my short arms so we’ve been okay. Most things are finger tip length on her. Small blessings, but it’s no help for those with kids with normal arms.
(I am 5’8″ and have 2-3 inches taken off the length of all jacket sleeves or they come to my finger tips.)
What are her friends wearing? Where do they shop?
This actually seems extremely burdensome…boys these days seems to exclusively wear athletic clothes or t-shirts with images. Maybe this is a unicorn situation where it’s “easier” for girls. Maybe high waisted jeans and crop tops or flowing shirts? I am decidedly out of sync with teen style these days, though.
I’m not usually a hand-wringer when it comes to dress codes but this one seems really controlling.
Ha, I feel like I should have added some cultural context – this is a private school in the south. Boys in our neighborhood wear a lot of polo + chino shorts even on the weekends. So the no athletic wear/no images thing has been the least difficult part to deal with. Girls tend to dress in more feminine styles – think Bama Rush, LoveShackFancy, ruffles everywhere. So the oversized sweatshirt/jeans looks that my friends’ kids in Seattle are rocking are very much Not the Thing here.
I should also say that my personal style is very much NOT ruffles everywhere so I am already the not-cool mom and thus mildly useless.
Is she still in kids’ sizes? If so, check out the big girls’ department at Nordstrom. They tend to have age-appropriate styles that are more likely to be appropriate for school.
But we are in the SEUS and both boys and girls tend to wear athletic wear to school. You must be in a more southern, more ritzy neighborhood than we are.
I’ve had luck with my tween with similar dress code at Zara, JCrew and Vineyard Vines.
Screaming into the void…
My husband’s mom (MIL1) told my husband that her partner (MIL2) had “given her permission to prioritise spending time with us….” Erm, ok, not sure what we’re supposed to do with that info…
And then proceeded to tell him that when they visit next month, they’ll also be dogsitting MIL’s son’s dog. The dog is used to kids but is rambunctious, and our 5 year old is pretty freaked out by dogs. We’ve been working on it, facilitating encounters with mellow, trusted dogs and working on remaining calm if a dog gets too close, but not sure a 5 day immersion therapy is the way to go.
Wait, what? They announced that they are bringing a dog to your house? Tell them they can rent a dog-friendly airbnb!
Oh sorry, poor phrasing. My husband and son are going to THEIR house. Definitely no dogs allowed in our house.
In that case, they clearly care more about the dog than your husband’s visit, so if I were him I’d cancel.
The dog thing is so irritating. When my kids were 2 and 4 we went on vacation with friends who at the last minute brought along their very rambunctious dog. The dog (who was a genuinely nice dog) barked at anything surprising, loved to run/tussle/wrestle, jumped everywhere, etc. It took the 4yo almost two years to get over that experience and become comfortable with dogs again. Some dog owners (not all!!) can be shockingly oblivious to how scary a dog can be to a small kid. The number of times i’ve heard “oh, he’s friendly” or “she LOVES kids” as someone lets their dog literally jump up onto my kid…jeez. It’s not that I don’t believe them that their dog is friendly — I like dogs myself — but the lack of empathy for what it’s like to be a little kid who’s not used to dogs really bugs me.
Eh not a big dog person but I feel like this is kind of on you for not using your words? I can’t imagine letting a dog jump on my kid and not saying “hey, please control your dog so it doesn’t jump on [kid].” Also I think fear of dogs is pretty normal around age 4. My daughter got terrified of dogs around that age even though she never had any traumatic experience.
Have you met dogs and their people? Dogs can jump on a kid very, very quickly, and people with jumpy dogs who aren’t already keeping them under control are not going to do anything differently even if asked.
Well she said these people were her friends so presumably they care about her kid and don’t want her to be upset! I get that someone who lets their dog jump on strange kids in the park is not necessarily a very nice person, but hopefully a friend would respond to a polite request to keep the dog away from the kid.
So you are saying that if I’m walking down the sidewalk with my kid, and someone is walking their dog toward us, it should be on ME to yell to them as they approach “hey, please don’t let your dog jump on my kid!” And if I don’t do this, then it’s my fault if the dog lunges at us? I’m sorry, but absolutely not. If you know your dog cannot be controlled around kids then move to the road or move off the sidewalk.
As a dog owner (and a parent of young kids), +1.
We have a 5 year old lab who loves everyone, kids included. She’s always walked on a leash. I (1) will not let a kid approach her to pet her unless the grown-up walking with the kid says it is okay (obviously this is not the case for like 10 year old kids that are walking on their own), and (2) I immediately step on her leash so that it is physically impossible for her to jump up on them. And I also warn the grown-up and kid that she likes to “give kisses” (lick people).
And FWIW my friends’ dog did not ever jump on my kid — they kept the dog contained in a room off the living room with baby gates and leashed it when they moved it from its area to outdoors. However, it did bark whenever anyone came near the gate, wrestled/knocked over things within its area, etc. Again, it was a perfectly nice dog but that stuff is legit scary for a kid who didn’t grow up with dogs. The being-jumped-on has mostly happened with dogs that we encounter on the sidewalk or at parks.
Ugh, in the UK, dogs are mostly offlead and terribly trained and it drives me nuts. I am someone who likes dogs but a big dog jumping at me, or a dog putting his muddy paws on my clothes, or running in front of my bike is a near-daily occurance.
I don’t understand how the poorly trained off-leash dog thing even works. My older rescue dog refused to be trained to come when called, and if I ever let her off-lead she’d get hit by a car or get lost.
“Oh, having the dog here won’t work for us. Let’s reschedule your visit – the following alternative dates work for us, so let us know what’s best for you! We’re looking forward to seeing you!”
I agree on not sure what that’s supposed to mean, but I’d give her a break on the bringing a dog thing. Finding people to care for pets is just as hard sometimes as finding people to care for kids (and I think should be treated the same!) Honestly it sounds like a great opportunity. As my kids get older they end up around their friends’ dogs more and more and I can’t tell you how nice it is to have kids who are appropriately cautious but open to dogs. I’ve had people tell me they try to encourage playdates with my kids because they’re good with babies and pets/dogs. We’ve taught them (over time) to ask permission to pet and not to cry or run away, which can excite dogs more. I think as long as you’re vigilant a period with a rambunctious dog isn’t a bad thing – dog will probably chill out after a bit. It sounds like you’re taking the smart approach by working on it so just keep communicating! Immersion therapy might be just what you need! (My middle kid used to be super scared of dogs and it took befriending the neighbor’s dog to make her decide she’s okay with most)
Haha, I see I’m an outlier here. I really like animals and have really prioritized it in my house! Feel free to tell them no way – there ARE services that can cover this.
I am an animal lover with a dog and prioritize having animal-safe kids, but I don’t think the way to raise animal-safe kids is to force them to host a rambunctious dog in their home.
Sounds like it’s actually not hosting but visiting…
Your husband should tell her no, the dog cannot stay at your house.
Say no. “Your dog can’t come”. It’s truly possible to do. You have a cat.
Husband and son are going to THEIR house, whether they are suddenly dogsitting their “granddog”. He’s said they need to make other arrangements for the dog.
There’s dog-related history here, when MIL2 first showed up it was a “surprise, I’m dating a woman, she’s moving in, with her 2 teenage children and 5 chihuahuas! And btw, you can’t tell anyone because I might lose my job!” He was 12, experiencing a mental health crisis/undiagnosed autism, and terrified of dogs.
Oh, my. The dogs are the least of the issues there. Why does he want so badly to spend time with his mother if she has been putting him last since he was 12?
Right? But I think it’s hard to give up on family? I limit my time with them because it makes me angry how they don’t see/appreciate what a loving, genuinely kind, loyal person my husband is.
This sounds like a more extreme version of my husband’s family. His dad remarried when the kids were young adults, and dad prioritizes stepmother’s family above his own. [Stepmother is actually quite a lovely woman but is very closely connected to her adult children in a way that dad never was even before the divorce/remarriage. She actually encourages him to spend time with his children and grandchildren but he just doesn’t make a huge effort and mainly tags along with her.] The kids are really resentful and are always competing for his attention, to the point where they can’t enjoy the attention he does bother to give them. It’s pretty sad.
Well I disagree with that then. If he’s going to their house, they can have a dog! He should get another place to stay or reschedule.
Given the description of the family situation, having his own place to stay might be easier even without the dog.
Maybe it makes me a bad person but no, we absolutely do not allow other people’s badly behaved dogs in our house. Hard stop. There are plenty of boarder/dog sitters and they can either reschedule their visit with you to a time when they don’t have the dog or board the dog, one or the other.
I’m team hotel when visiting difficult family. It’s frustrating and expensive but oh so safe-making.
+1 million. We spend >$1,000 on hotels every time we visit my in-laws for a long weekend (Manhattan is not cheap y’all) and it’s among the best money I spend all year.
More Sleep Would Be Nice says
Any suggestions on helping a 21-month-old use utensils? When offered, DS #2 usually will play with it, use it for 1-2 bites, throw it, rinse and repeat, as eating with his hands is faster.
I wish I remembered what I did with DS #1, but he also wasn’t a thrower…
We outsourced this to daycare…
+1 on outsourcing to daycare, but also there was a big improvement in utensil usage for us around 22-23 months.
We just started the kids at a new preschool, and I’ve already seen a difference, as most of DS #2s classmates are like ~2.5+. Maybe this is one of those wait-it-out things…
I think it’s a wait it out thing. Peer pressure can be a good thing sometimes!
Need help for daughter says
My daughter is 6.5 yo and in first grade. She has always been a lot – big personality, extremely active, non-stop talking, big big emotions, but recently we have been having major issues with tantrums at home if something doesn’t go her way. Tantrums involve kicking, screaming at the top of her lungs, running manically around the house, and just repeating over and over again what it is that she wants (ex: “I will have a treat, I will have a treat, I will have a treat). It’s pretty alarming and has caused a lot of stress at home for everyone and tension between me and my. This happens probably 6 days a week (sometimes multiple a day) and last anywhere from 5 minutes to 45 minutes.
My husband and I did a few parental guidance sessions with a psychologist which helped and at least got us on the same page. We were on the waiting list for a spot at that same practice for individual counseling sessions for our daughter and just got a spot. We had our first session with the counselor last week and I have a lot of questions. She mentioned that we are describing a lot of signs of ADHD. We had talked to a psychologist at a different practice a few months ago (but didn’t go with her for various reasons) and she also mentioned ADHD. I’ve done a bit of internet googling since then and I’m thinking at least some of the symptoms fit. If that’s the case, should we be going through our pediatrician? A psychologist? A psychiatrist? The person my daughter is scheduled to see if a LSW, which now that I’m doing more research doesn’t seem right to me.
Also, my daughter has done well in school so far. Our report from her K teacher was that she was “bossy” and tended to talk a lot in class. Nothing along the lines of she can’t sit still, etc. She loves to read and can sit quietly reading. Reading is one of the main things that I can do to calm her down and I’ll often suggest that we snuggle up and read if she is in the midst of a tantrum. It works sometimes. She can also follow instructions and pay attention in her activities and sports. Could it still be ADHD even if the main issues manifest at home? Is this something that will eventually get worse and start to affect other areas if we don’t get treatment?
After years of going back and forth about whether we should do something I’m finally recognizing that some of her issues are not normal and we need help, but I’m unsure how to best help her.
Your daughter sounds a lot like me. I always suspected I had ADHD but my therapist just suggested I have autism spectrum disorder. Lots of overlap with ADHD. I’m pursuing a diagnosis and it is really hard as an adult, so kudos to you for seeking answers for her now (whether it is ADHD, ASD, or something else!). Haven’t navigated this successfully for myself yet, but I don’t see any harm in starting with the LSW. S/he might be able to recommend someone else for a more formal assessment.
I’ll let people with more expertise weigh in, but my layman’s understanding of ADHD is that (1) it can present very differently in girls/women than in boys/men, and our societal knee-jerk impression of ADHD is more based on how it presents in boys/men, and (2) a hallmark is working so hard to keep it together in public that you kind of fall apart in private.
This sounds like my 7-yr-old son. I’m thinking it might be anxiety for him…but ADHD and anxiety have many overlapping symptoms, and a big one is rage/difficulty managing big emotions. My son also has a lot of worries and nerves, which is making me think anxiety for him. (I’m following with interest to see what professionals people recommend consulting). His teachers all remark what a “sweetheart” he is, but at home it’s a lot of yelling and aggression.
There is a parenting coach for parents of “spicy kids” named Mary Van Geffen and I love her content because she GETS IT. Spirited children are tough and disruptive to family life, but she is so encouraging and reassuring that peace and connection are possible. She’s offering an online course starting soon that I am highly considering doing…
ooooh this looks great – Mary Van Geffen, have not heard of her.
OP, I could have written your post as well about my 5yo! He does so well at school but at home he really falls apart. We know we need help for him but also aren’t sure where to go – an OT because he’s sensory seeking? A Neuropsych for an eval? A family therapist for us to work on our communication with each other and him? Ped was very unconcerned, I think because he’s a boy and he’s 5 and he does fine at school. But he is A LOT at home, and his poor little bro is often the target.
Boston Legal Eagle says
Pogo, our kids sound similar. FWIW, my kid’s transition to 1st grade (which followed an easy summer of camp) has been much much better than K. So for him, I do think a lot of it was just maturing and getting used to the new environment. He’s very sensitive to change, I think. Not that talk therapy isn’t helpful for strategies, but honestly we haven’t done anything different now and he’s just older and different. Still acts out when tired or we’ve done too much on the weekends.
Hi, I have a very similar 7 year old boy and I just appreciate hearing I’m not alone! (This board has been great for that.). We are liking Dr Becky a lot right now too.
This is a question for the counselor. “You say this sounds a lot like ADHD. What are the next steps to investigate that?” Generally a psychologist does the testing, but an M.D. (probably your pediatrician) has to prescribe any medication that’s needed.
Not all kids with ADHD are hyperactive. If she is very smart, she’ll probably be able to hide it at school but then be worn out when she gets home.
It’s my understanding that the *brain* is hyperactive – trouble keeping a train of thought, hopping from one idea to the next, problems focusing/listening, etc – not necessarily the body. Or, it could manifest in the body by fidgeting, constant hair twirling, etc
It’s not even that the brain is hyperactive. People with ADHD can hyperfocus on topics and activities they are interested in. They are capable of focus, just not always on the right thing.
That sounds like a lot for her and your family!
– ADHD presents in a variety of ways. The main symptoms are attention deficit, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, and different people have different combinations of those three things. It sounds like your daughter is struggling with some of the impulsivity and less with hyperactivity and attention deficit (or perhaps selective attention/hyperfocus). That doesn’t necessarily mean ADHD, but that’s probably a major part of what they’re seeing.
– I know LSWs who focus on ADHD coaching and life skills. The ones I know help more with executive function and organization, but I wouldn’t rule out the idea that an LSW could help with managing impulsivity and big feelings. How did you end up with an appointment to see the LSW, and what is their focus?
– Most psychiatrists are going to focus on medication. We medicate our son, and it’s absolutely necessary for him, but I would explore other resources before pursuing medication.
– A psychologist (PsyD or PhD) typically handles more complex mental health issues. They can do individual or group therapy. Pediatric psychologists have been extremely busy since before the pandemic, and busier since, and it can take a long time to get in as a new patient. (A referral from your pediatrician may help.) I’d probably get on a wait list to see on, as being “in” as a current patient can really help if you suddenly find your daughter needs a higher level of care. But I wouldn’t discount the LSW helping, especially if they’re immediately available for regular appointments.
– It’s hard to know how things will play out down the road. But there’s no harm in starting with some outside help in managing big feelings and controlling temper.
I have a daughter who turned 6 this summer and is in 1st. We have danced around ADHD and honestly, she may or may not have it (ped said no but we pushed for a referral, psych said not an obvious case keep an eye on it, teacher has said not at all).
If it isn’t adhd, it’s likely mild autism or maybe it’s just being different than most other kids. It doesn’t really matter to us, because we have found techniques that work for kids with adhd to be helpful, tips that work for autistic kids helpful, and tips that work for highly intelligent middle children with attention seeking behavior very helpful.
Her school work is great, she’s mastering all the material without issue. she fights reading something fierce at home but her teacher tells us she’s a complete book worm at school. Is this because we encourage her to read and her older sister loves reading so she pushes back? Or because she can’t focus? Who knows. One trick we used is to have our youngest kiddo ask her to read a story. Works like a charm every time.
She has major bedtime issues some days (see my posts from last week!) but some days are great. She’s young for her grade and one of the youngest in her friend group, so I think that’s at play too. She does some activities with K/1 mixed classes and she is amazing in those. When she “plays up” in things that are for grades 1/2 is when she acts out.
Three car seats? says
I posted on Friday but got stuck in mod so I’m trying again:
Any tips or tricks for figuring out a carseat set-up with three across? I’m pregnant with my third child and trying to figure out how this is going to work. We will have two convertible seats (one forward facing and one rear facing) and an infant carrier.
We have a minivan and SUV but we don’t need access to the third row in either. Putting a kiddo in the third row isn’t an option, at least for awhile, as I can’t get back there to buckle him in.
Help! How do people do this?
We have three and it was pretty much trial and error. I think I spent an entire afternoon trying to figure it out. We had two forward facing and an infant seat in the back of a Subaru Legacy and an Impreza. We knew that the rear facing infant seat had to go on the passenger side because of how far back the driver’s seat sat, and after that, it was every iteration of using LATCH or seatbelt on each seat. What worked for us was seatbelt for infant seat, latch for middle convertible, seatbelt for driver side convertible. We also bought Dionos because of the slim profile. If you are even close to turning the rear facing convertible around, I would consider that- it will make things easier.
We had two convertible Dionos (both front facing) and a carrier (Chicco Key fit) in a Toyota Prius. Not exactly sure how, TBH. Then three Dionos (one rear facing). Are you sure you can’t get access to the back of the minivan (once you are not pregnant, of course)? Mine is pretty easy to access (I would put the oldest back there).
Do you have an Odyssey? (I kind of remember your late post…) If so, the middle row is SUPER spacious and can easily fit three across. My sister does it with the Graco E2F, which is one of the widest seats out there (the other two seats she uses are the Chicco MyFit and KeyFit.) I did it with a Chicco MyFit, Graco SlimFit3 LX, and a Chicco NextFit.
What seats do you currently have? All the seats I named, other than the E2F, are quite slim, so you may need to change out a seat or two to make it work.
Yes! Im glad to hear that that the Odyssey might actually work. We have a Graco Extend 2 Fit, two Britax ClickTight seats that are super wide and will probably have to go, and a Nuna Rava. I haven’t bought an infant seat yet.
I realize we will probably have to get new seats but it would be nice if we could keep at least one or two of the ones we have. I will try it out and see. Thanks!
You can fit three across the middle row of the Odyssey, but I’d recommend removing the jump seat, sliding the two remaining seats to one side, and then putting the infant seat behind the open side. It’s so easy to snap them in. When my twins moved to convertible seats we kept the same seat setup but with my oldest in the back and the two rear facing in the middle. It’s so much easier to get everyone in and out with one in the back, but for long trips I recommend everyone in the middle so you can hand them stuff.
Good luck! Three across was my obsession when I found out we were having twins. We even spent a year with three across in an Honda Fit.
We have an Odyssey and three across fit for us when we need the back open- Uppababy Mesa (middle) Graco Milestone and Graco 4ever. I’ve also heard good things about the Graco SlimFits. There’s a f***book group called Car Seats for the Littles that can help with this stuff too.
FWIW our current setup is – Mesa in the middle row captain chair behind driver, middle seat removed, captain chair 2 folded down and slid next to captain chair 1. Row 2: one rear facing and one FF – big kids like to sit together. Have also had the rear facing one next to baby. Big kid who FF can buckle them self in/out
Aaaaugh. Our household has so far avoided COVID. Kiddo’s BFF just came down with it and kiddo was definitely exposed. Kiddo has symptoms but we’d chalked it up to the booster she got over the weekend. Rapid test is negative and symptoms are improving. I’m supposed to get on a plane tomorrow for a work trip I don’t want to take. I am at elevated risk for complications and long COVID. On the one hand, if kiddo does get sick I’d rather be out of the line of fire while she’s most contagious. On the other hand, if she’s already exposed me I don’t want to get sick while I’m out of town. I also don’t trust my husband to take appropriate precautions and remain well so he can care for a sick kid on his own. Assuming kiddo is negative again tomorrow morning, WWYD?
I’d go as long as you’re asymptomatic and testing negative, but I also don’t really understand what you mean about not trusting your husband “to take appropriate precautions and remain well.” Covid spreads through households easily even when people do everything right.
Late, but here to agree. My whole family got it a few weeks ago in spite of being quite careful and catching it early. On the other hand, I know extended family who avoided transmitting between each other over the course of a long car trip (20 hours maybe?) and hotel stay, in spite of not masking and taking essentially no precautions between each other.
In spite of my nuclear family’s experience, I think it’s worth it to take in household precautions, but I don’t think it’s worth the emotional energy to worry about whether your husband will do it right—the outcome is just too uncertain no matter what you do.
We bought a house (yay!). and are remodeling the bathroom before we move in. We have a general contractor but I think I still have to do make a lot of decisions. How do I decide on tiles, fixtures, faucets, etc? Are there inexpensive designers? Have you used an online service? The house was built in the 1920s and I’d like to be true to the time period I think?
I realize this has nothing to do with parenting but I basically never go to the main site anymore.
I found one helpful thing is to go look at real bathrooms, especially if you have friends who have gone through a reno recently. Even looking at kitchen renos can give a good idea of what I like in real life as opposed to online.
Our contractor, too, would send us pictures of recent projects and they had suggestions about what was reasonable within our budget.
Another thought- I haven’t done this myself, but on my neighborhood listserv, people often ask if they can look at other people’s renos and neighbors often offer up their homes for peeks. Depends on how friendly your neighbors are, though…
Mrs. Jones says
IDK about 1920s design, but when we renovated a bathroom last year, I got everything on Wayfair. I knew what colors I wanted, had a general budget, and just went from there.
see this would stress me out so much, because what if somethign comes and you don’t like it and it’s almost impossible to return
If you want a 1920s design I highly recommend the book Bungalow Bathrooms (you can see it on Google Books). For each part of the room (tile, cabinets, fixtures) the author goes through what you’d choose for a truly period “obsessive restoration” and then what you could “compromise” on for an easier, slightly modernized approach. It’s more detail than you really need but I loved knowing exactly what would be 1920s style and being able to decide which parts I wanted to copy and which parts were less important to me. Also the photos are BEAUTIFUL and so inspiring.
Spend some time on Pinterest and Google looking for key words that match your vibe… take note of the common elements among the images you like and then go to see as many options in person as possible. I was paralyzed on tile choices until we spent an afternoon at a massive tile store and basically made all our choices at once.
29 weeks pregnant with our first and only. After maybe 8 weeks of feeling the brain fog and nausea lift, the 3rd trimester is hitting me like a rock and I can barely function.
Today, as I was discussing transition planning with my only employee, he told me that he intends to leave for another opportunity. This was a hard to fill role due to the compensation and skillset and after 6 months I hired an internal person who was good but not great. I now need to figure out coverage for basically my whole department while I’m gone, and now do his job on top of mine. Oh, and this is on top of the Game of Thrones type environment at my workplace and already being left out of important meetings or projects because of my impending leave.
How’s everyone else’s Monday going?
Oh lord, that sounds like a nightmare…
Well, I can’t find my work phone today so that’s a fun one… also, I may have just realized that That Thing I told my staffer to do 2 weeks ago in painstaking detail and then followed up on 2x to make sure that they were moving along, there were no challenges, and I’d like to see a draft today… um. They just… didn’t do it? Like, not even a great reason. Just, haven’t started on it.
…I am fairly sure my staffer is having a mental health crisis. And like, part of me has empathy but… it’s been an ongoing crisis for like 3 years and I’m rather burnt out at managing it.
ugh I’m sorry. I also felt like I was handing my job off into the unknown for my first maternity leave and yeah… my boss (who “covered” for me) did literally nothing. He made a big financial mistake that was still being talked about years later, and did absolutely nothing to move my projects forward. In the end, it was fine. I had a lot to deal with when I came back, but I worked through it.
You own this company?