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It didn't work out well at first and we still have disagreements about it but momma's foot was put down a long time ago and it's staying down. He can like it or not but it's not going to change. One of us will be home with our children.

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&happymum it's good that you had a great plan. For me, i never thought about being a stay-at-home mom (I was taught that women have to be self-sufficient and need to have their own careers since I was younger, it'll probably make for another post LOL) until i have a baby. Till now I still feel a bit torn but I am working on some kind of plan now =)

&momathome I am glad things work out so well between you and your hubby. Online job is possible but it'll take time and a lot of effort to make an income. And Bubblews? I am still waiting for the last 2 payments LOL

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I have the best of both worlds, I work from home. I do survey sites, online communities and now of course Bubblews. I do this because it helps our families income but mainly I do it because I want to be home with my kids.

I don't like daycare for multiple reasons cost being only one part of it. My kids have never been in daycare, when I've worked outside the home, their father was a stay at home dad and when he has worked outside the home, I've stayed home. It works out better when he works outside the home and I stay at home because I also make money online which adds to our income whereas when he stays at home we only have my income. But for me, daycare is not an option.

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I used to be working in office until my son was about 2 years old. It's my choice to stay at home when he was born, I wanted to take care of him by myself so strongly after he was born, so I took some time to plan for it. I am a freelance programmer now, I usually work when my kids are sleeping, i.e. midnight or early morning. I can't take too many projects, as my main purpose is to spend time with my children at home. I haven't think of going out and work unless my children are all grown up.
Sometimes I can work when my two kids are playing together (they are 4 and 1 year old), sometimes they might come and disturb me, so I gotta shut down my computer. I suppose when they grow older, I'll have more time to work during day time, so I don't need to wake up in the very early morning and work. :D

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&buzymommy unfortunately my work is a bit crazy now even if i work 8-4, i still end up working 8-6 or more =( and my toddler doesn't like to eat so i spend a lot of time feeding her and she does not nap for 2 hours either.

&Champagne I hear you. If i win a lottery now i'll be stay-at-home =) until then, I need to find a way to make things work =) I would like to work part-time if I can.

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It is very difficult to need to work full-time while a child needs it's parent present. I was too young when I had my son, and I had to work and go to school. My mother ended up raising my son, even though we lived together. My son and I never had a good relationship because of it. Looking back, I never would have put myself in the position of getting pregnant when I had goals I had not accomplished for myself, as it was not fair to my son. I cannot undo it now, but children's needs are just as important as the parent's, and we as a society do not honor that. I know someone who just had a baby, and in three weeks she was back at work full time. The father worked full-time, too. The child was in day care all day, just out of the womb. I feel so sorry for young children who need their mom and dad but they're gone.

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This is just a fact of life for so many people. Know you're doing your best and she will be more independent and capable in the long run.

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I hear ya! I'm in an IT job too and know it's hard to write code with a toddler climbing on you :) I consider myself fortunate that my boss allows me to work from home as needed (for dr appts, or if she's sick, etc). Everyone in my Dept takes a "work at home day" once a week, but I save mine for these moments when I really need it.

I try not to feel guilty, after all you are just trying to support your family. I choose the earlier hours at work when I was given the option 7-3:30. So this is how I see it. She's not even AWAKE until 8-8:30, so that's an hour I'm not missing anything. She naps from 2-4:30 or 5, so that's 2 hours I'm not missing anything. She takes an hour to eat breakfast and lunch. Add it all up and that's 5 hours where I'm not missing much. We keep her up til 9:30 so I get plenty of time with her at night (hence the long nap).

It's rough to get up early to be at work at 7, I'm not a morning person, but getting off at 3:30 is awesome and I love the extra time I have to make dinner and actually spend quality time with her :) I try to do fun things with her every couple of nights as well as the weekends.

PS if I had a million dollars I'd stay home no doubt about it :) Anyone who says they'd be BORED not working must not have an exciting life. I have so many hobbies in addition to an active toddler, so I would never be bored if I didn't work! We can dream!!

Sorry long comment ;)

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&sandyspider yeah I can understand. Hopefully one day I can at least do part-time.
&sid556 thanks for the kind words! We just gotta do what we gotta do sometimes.
&Kath12 thanks for being so encouraging! A mom who can stay sane is a happy mom right, and a happy mom is a better mom usually.
&SaraValor good for u & ur kids! Before I have my baby, I never thought I would want to stay-at-home but now ....
&jisaiahs my hubby said that all the time because his work hours are worse than me. Sometimes he wakes up and goes to work at 5:30am and by the time he got home from work, my toddler is already asleep.

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Thats so sad. Even as a male I want to be able to spend all my time with my children.. :D

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Thankfully, I was, and am able to work at home, while the kids are home. I wouldn't want it any other way.
:)

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You are a great mom and though the decisions you have to make are tough you are doing it with your child in mind. I've worked at a Center and I've had a family daycare in my home and kids do great!! There is a schedule for everything, meals, sleep, playtime etc and I believe young children thrive on that. If you are comfortable with the center you've chosen then I say go for it! I know there aren't a lot of hours to spend together during the week..but there is weekends and a happy mom will spend more quality time with their little one than one who is frustrated and trying to work at the same time. HTH...

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Its tough when you first start leaving them, I know but they do adjust eventually and soon they won't even care at all if they are being left. I've done both....I stayed home and did day care and then I've also gone back to work full time.

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I'm not a mom, and I don't think I'll ever be...

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&RexTrulove &LindaCPearson Thanks for chipping in! I think social interaction is important too and other kids love my toddler!

&victoriuh i hope I can work part-time. It seems to be the best balance between the 2 options , I would think.

&mamasteph I like having my sanity back, I like being able to focus better, but i miss my toddler! I wonder if it's harder for me to adapt or my toddler to adapt, sometimes.

&Alrady Thanks for chipping in and taking the time to write! Unfortunately, going part-time not an option now, but maybe a year down the road, just personal and family circumstances and a mortgage-size student loan sigh. Even though i am working full time, i do get quality time with my toddler (mainly between 6-9am and 5:30-8:30pm LOL). My toddler is just clingy and it's really difficult for me to have a stable nanny part-time, as a lot of them want full-time position (i can't tell you how many babysitters I have interviewed and tried and am not satisfied with). My current nanny is looking for a full-time job, that's why I am choosing to enroll my toddler to daycare in the next school year, and if that does not work well, I always have the option to roll back daycare hours (it's hard to get a full-time spot but if you reduce daycare hours after you get a full-time spot it's a lot easier). I agree with you that I need to think harder about my options and I will work on that.

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These are all my opinions as mom and grandma:
I would pay the nanny a few bucks extra and only take the child in for PART DAYS ---- 7-8 hours is tooo long and then you have the travel time. IMHO at 2 yrs it is 2 much unless totally necessary - especially since it is not everyday. I am not child expert but I think the kids need shorter times at daycare. What is happening now is she is getting exposed to a lot of germs, possible overtired workers and cranky kids as well as happy ones. If you have any choice at all I'd say try to avoid full time. Kids can do well and the pluses of a set routine etc are great. I have to wonder what the nanny is doing if the child is interuppting your work time all the time..... The nanny shoudl have her busy and be taking her to park and other things.

If you have to use a day care try to make it shorter rather than 8 hours. If you have to hire a second nanny or rearrange you work a little it would be better. I don't think its guilt as much as you know it is not working as well as you like. Get organized with a few playgroups that the Nanny can do for the social or church activies or close friends with kids and the social will be more than enough. Maybe set up work so that you have a couple of hours free EARLIER in the day to shorten daycare time (and work earlier in AM ) . No easy answers but you do have options.

It sounds from your letter that you have plenty of options but are not thinking outside the box. If you have made it with the nanny costs this far - then another year will benefit a lot.

That is not guilt trip that is weighing out the pros/cons and deciding which is the best of allllllll choices. One last note if it is 8 hours of daycare and then travel dinner and bath and bed... how much time will you really get with your child? You have to decide how much you and she can live with. Kids up until 3 yrs. NEED about 12-14 hours sleep a day and that means you get 2-4 hours quality time with your child on a full time daycare schedule. If you can do it at all wait out full time for another year. and ease into full time.

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It sure isn't easy. I used to try to think mostly about what was best for the child, though. At home, they wouldn't get any of the social interplay with other children. The feeling of guilt, though, is a sign that you love and care, and that isn't a bad thing at all. Not easy, but not bad.

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I'm a stay at home mom now, by choice. When the big kids were little, I worked full time. They were in a daycare center until they were 3 and 2. Honestly, I liked the center. They had friends to play with, they did projects, and they went on field trips. They both loved it! I also think it helped with structure and interacting with other people (kids and adults). I'm not sure when I'll go back to work, but that's an entirely different topic! If I did, I would most likely put the baby in a daycare center. Ultimately, it's whatever you're comfortable with, though. Trust your gut!

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This is so complex :( I used to work a full time traditional job and I felt guilty. Now I try to work part time from home and feel guilty about that too :(

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I feel your pain. I went through the same emotions when my daughter was younger. I was a single parent, had to work full-time and had no choice. Although I missed out on a lot and resented not seeing her all that much, I do think my daughter benefitted quite a bit from it, getting to mingle with peers, learned to socialize early. She also has no siblings and definitely need to interact with more people than just me! She is now 26 and appears to be very happy and has more friends than anyone I've ever known, both young and old.

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