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Home Office - The Childcare Solution?

If you've been thinking about working at home to save yourself money on childcare, unless your children are school age, don't bother. If you've been considering working at home as a way of supervising your children's caregivers, then I highly recommend it.

© 1998, by Judy Lederman

While being at home gives you more flexibility in handling childcare, do not be fooled into believing that you can do without childcare if you have a home/office. The odd thing about important business calls is that they inevitably come at the very instant that the kids are clamoring for dinner, throwing tantrums or terrorizing each other. An even stranger phenomenon is the fact that even the tiniest children appear to have psychic ways of knowing when a business call is critical. It is at that precise moment, when your children are most likely to develop the excruciating colic, the insoluble sibling problem and the disappointment that escalates into shrieks and chaos.

That is why even if you are the most organized and meticulous business person, there comes a day when, to keep your sanity, you must make childcare a significant part of your home/office regimen.

Children crave attention. Understand that if you are pecking away at your home computer or conducting business while your children are parked in front of Nickelodeon, you are just as faulty as the Nanny who does the same. Beepers and cell phones are marvelous inventions. These tools can help you be at your child's Book Fair, yet still enable you to catch those crucial calls.

If you are home with your children and think you can do it all, remember to regularly schedule quality time for the kids. Do the activities that you would expect a babysitter to do -- give them plenty of fresh air, read them books, play tic-tac-toe. The minute you feel that the children are not getting what they need from you, consider finding someone to give them some kind of alternate care.

The best part about a home office is the innate flexibility you have to keep an eye on your children's caregivers, and to take part in your children's lives. My home office years kept me attuned to what was happening in my home, and it enabled me to keep a close eye on what was happening with the children, especially while my younger children were too young to let me know exactly what was going on.

If you've been thinking about working at home to save yourself money on childcare, unless your children are school age, don't bother. If you've been considering working at home as a way of supervising your children's caregivers, then I highly recommend it.


Judy Lederman is the author of the forthcoming book Searching for Mary Poppins and is the owner of a home-based public relations firm in Westchester, New York. She shares her expertise as the "Childcare" pro on Moms Online. She can be reached at , phone: 1-800-JSL-FAME, P.O., Box 113, Ardsley-on-Hudson, NY 10503, web site: www.searchingforpoppins.com

 
 
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