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Old 01-31-2012, 07:41 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mimimomx3 View Post
Here's the OP's first post. Not really sure how asking How much of that second income do you really bring home after commuting costs, daycare, etc.? answers the question of how other WORKING PARENTS balance days off, vacations, etc.
Sure when you take it out of context it sounds like it is derailing a conversation but it is 100% relevant to this conversation whether you like it or not. I know many people that are working to pay daycare costs and when they sit down and figure it out, they are not netting out very much money and actually end up BETTER off if one person stays home. It is something they should examine in their finances--taxes, insurance, commuting costs, daycare expenses, etc. If you are netting out $1000/month, you can earn more than that working part-time retail or waitressing in the evenings and weekends and have flexibility in your schedule to deal with the kids and whatever comes up. We had some friends that were actually LOSING money each month with the wife working but until they put it on paper, they didn't realize that.

Without one parent with some job flexibility, it can't work so they need to look at other options. Sure, having other mom's help out in a pinch is great but would you really ask your neighbor to watch your child every time they are sick, I think not.
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Old 01-31-2012, 08:35 AM
 
Location: here
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I wonder what the OP means by "zero flexibility." Everyone gets sick. Everyone has to go to doctor and dentist appointments. Everyone has to be able to take time off for these things.

If they have 2 weeks of vacation, they probably have sick days in addition to that.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:21 AM
 
Location: Swisshelm Park, Pittsburgh, PA
356 posts, read 757,144 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustJulia View Post
The OP already has two small children. both of whom are presumably in some kind of daycare. The cost of having an infant or toddler (pre-potty training) in full-time daycare is more than having a school-aged child in the summer "camps" put on by a daycare center. ... At least, it was when I had kids that age.

The OP doesn't have to do much different from what he is doing now. The costs for having two children in daycare will go down when they are older and potty-trained, then down even more when they start school and only after-school care is needed, then up over the summer when the kids need to be at daycare all day--but that cost will still probably be lower than what he is paying now. If he just doesn't get too comfortable with the lower cost (braces himself for summer), he'll be fine.

Edit: Oops, forgot that one child is already older (entering kindergarten).
I have found this to be not true. The school-age summer program at our (reasonably priced) daycare is more expensive than their year-round infant or toddler care. Granted, they bus the school-age kids to a park once a week and on some other kind of field trip once a week but they really need this because their outdoor facilties are not well-suited for older kids. And THIS IS THE CHEAPEST OPTION for summer care for my school-age child. Most of the summer I am paying more to send her to higher quality camps.

AND the cost will only go down during the school year if the child attends public school. When DD started K in Catholic school with aftercare our monthly cost pretty much stayed the same during the school year, but definitely more expensive in the summer.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Swisshelm Park, Pittsburgh, PA
356 posts, read 757,144 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blakeas View Post
I have 2 kids - One is about to start kindergarden in the fall and the other is 16 months old.

My wife and I both work fulltime so we have utilized daycare throughout our kids lives. We dont live by family so we do not have any help.

My question is - How do other people do it in terms of when your child goes to kindergarden and has the summers off? Do other people just use camps for all summer? We both have full time jobs with no flexibility except we both get 2 weeks vacation.

Anyway, I am just trying to understand how everyone else does it - Thanks in advance for suggestions!
I think the OP may find the "random" days off school and school activities during the work day to be more challenging than the summers.

For the summer, we do camps, a week of family vacation, a week with grandma and take days off as needed. You just make it work. Since the OP has so little time off and no flexibility, s/he should definitely also try cooperating with other parents or trying to find a responsible teenager to hire to help with the "gap" days.

Also, don't assume that SAHMs will be the best help. I have not had a lot of luck with that. I guess some fear being taken advantage of and others may not even realize that you are in a bind. When I work from home, I often let my DD to have a friend over to keep her entertained and I usually try to stear her to the child of another WM. The OP may have better luck cooperating with other parents who work but have more flexibility.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mimimomx3 View Post
I guess I would ask a working parent you know in real life. They would be happy to share!
Agreed!
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:04 AM
 
Location: here
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this is not the norm, but I knew an office assistant who took a leave of absence during the summer because child care for 3 would have cost more than she made. I think she watched some other kids while she was home too.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Swisshelm Park, Pittsburgh, PA
356 posts, read 757,144 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kibbiekat View Post
this is not the norm, but I knew an office assistant who took a leave of absence during the summer because child care for 3 would have cost more than she made. I think she watched some other kids while she was home too.
Wow! That's some major flexibility. Her employer must have really valued her contributions the other 9 months of the year! Wonder if my employer likes me that much.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:18 AM
 
Location: here
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scientist Mom View Post
Wow! That's some major flexibility. Her employer must have really valued her contributions the other 9 months of the year! Wonder if my employer likes me that much.
This was where I last worked. I don't think I fully appreciated what I had there. My son was so sick when he was 1 that I contemplated taking the winter off to keep him out of day care. In the end, my mom helped, and I paid a friend to keep him a couple days/week, and I took every Friday off for about 4 months.
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:11 PM
 
20,793 posts, read 52,454,643 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kibbiekat View Post
I wonder what the OP means by "zero flexibility." Everyone gets sick. Everyone has to go to doctor and dentist appointments. Everyone has to be able to take time off for these things.

If they have 2 weeks of vacation, they probably have sick days in addition to that.
A lot of companies have gone to Paid Time Off, PTO, you get what you get and then you are done. Not every company has sick time in addition to vacation time either so people have to use vacation time to take care of sick children. Teachers in our district get 2 personal days to use for illness, vacation, taking care of a sick child, etc. Any other time taken is unpaid. There is no flexibility in their schedule, but having holidays off helps.
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:16 PM
 
Location: here
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golfgal View Post
A lot of companies have gone to Paid Time Off, PTO, you get what you get and then you are done. Not every company has sick time in addition to vacation time either so people have to use vacation time to take care of sick children. Teachers in our district get 2 personal days to use for illness, vacation, taking care of a sick child, etc. Any other time taken is unpaid. There is no flexibility in their schedule, but having holidays off helps.
What I meant is I would be surprised if 2 weeks was the total for vacation and sick. With only 2 weeks vacation, I would hope sick is separate. And don't most places increase your time off the longer your work there?
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:16 PM
 
Location: You know... That place
1,899 posts, read 2,354,543 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scientist Mom View Post
I have found this to be not true. The school-age summer program at our (reasonably priced) daycare is more expensive than their year-round infant or toddler care. Granted, they bus the school-age kids to a park once a week and on some other kind of field trip once a week but they really need this because their outdoor facilties are not well-suited for older kids. And THIS IS THE CHEAPEST OPTION for summer care for my school-age child. Most of the summer I am paying more to send her to higher quality camps.

AND the cost will only go down during the school year if the child attends public school. When DD started K in Catholic school with aftercare our monthly cost pretty much stayed the same during the school year, but definitely more expensive in the summer.
At my day care, the cost for an infant is $235/week. A school-ager is $55/week. That rate stays steady through the year. During the summer, they have at least one outing per week. You can sign up for the outing, or your child can stay at the center all day. The price for each outing is between $2-$7. They do everything from going to a splash park to the movies to visiting and getting pictures with a mini-horse.

All of the above is pretty common for day cares in my area.

I agree with the poster who said the random days off will be harder than the summer. Those days are when it really pays off to know other moms. It is good to be able to trade off days to stay home with the kids.
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