I have no doubt my .little chicks will be VERY loved at their new home. I have never met nicer "chicken lovers" in my life. They will be held, fed, and free to roam and lay their eggs. Thank you to my new friends, "The chicken people".
One day I said yes to going to a party to watch some crazy lady smear butter on a window and clean it off with a cloth and water (seriously, I went for the appetizers, wine, and girl time). Well, almost 7 years later, that one night changed my life. Yesterday, after 16 years of in home daycare/preschool and 24 years in the early childcare business, I closed my doors to become an official “Butter AND chicken juice smearer, along with leading a team of AMAZING people, for a company that impresses me every day with their high standards and morals. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that my choice to join Norwex would lead me to the opportunities and flexibility that have come my way. I have been patient and determined through the ups and downs of this business and have never lost focus on this BIG SCARY GOAL I put in place when I realized it was possible. Thank you to my family and friends who have been extremely patient these past 9 months as I tried to balance everything, but really slacked on communication. Thank you to my amazing team and to the whole Norwex Head Office! Without the support of these people this would have stayed a dream and not an achieved goal. If you took the time to read this, all I can say is that you are never too old to set a new goal or to dream a new dream…
3 days left. That is what I have of my 24 year career in Early Childcare. I am not going to be done. I will find my way into children's hearts someway. My journey is not over, just going a different direction.
I spent yesterday evening crying on and off. I had a continuous lump in my throat. Honestly, I cannot explain my emotions except to say they are a mixture. EXCITEMENT, SADNESS, and a little bit of fear.
Did you know, if your goals don't scare you, they are not big enough? Well, my goal of closing my full time business to enter a world of inconsistent income is absolutely terrifying. HOWEVER, my faith is strong in the unknown. My faith is strong in my belief things will be okay. I have to remind myself it is okay to be scared. I don't have to act like I have it all together, even though people who don't know me really well would think that I do have it all together. I don't. I make messes and I make mistakes. I surround myself with people who appreciate me and understand me. These people are my rocks of stability when I am an emotional wreck. Everyone needs their people and today I am grateful for mine.
I look forward to spending more time being able to reflect on my journey, and to achieve the new scary goals I am putting out there after I complete this BIG one.
I have hatched 9 and the 10th is on it's way. I would really like to live on a hobby farm. I would like to have egg laying chickens, fainting goats, miniature donkeys, and miniature horses that can come into my home and act like a big dog.
I would like to have large horses outside, barn cats, and a cow I saved from slaughter. I will also have my wiener dogs and a few random big dogs I have rescued. Particularly a greyhound.
Doesn't this all sound fun?? My life is going to change for the better in 9 days. I have worked my butt off for the last 6 years. Actually, it has been longer than that, but 6+ years of building businesses. I am discovering my purpose. I am on my journey. It is truly only beginning, but the biggest hurdle was getting on the path. I know I needed to get on the path before I could start the next phase. The path has been laid out and I now get to step foot on it in less than 2 weeks.
This is a path I started over 2 years ago. I KNEW I was going to do this. However, I didn't really know until I said the words I was quitting. Well, that is a lie. I did know, but I didn't actually believe until I said the words. This was one of those big scary goals that terrified me. STILL terrifies me. I kept thinking something bad would happen that would make my dream be put on hold. Then I realized, NO this is meant to be. I am meant to do what I am doing. I have been manifesting this future for a long time. I know what kind of results I can produce and what my new position can hold. I know I need to work hard. I know what I need to do. I know I can succeed. I GET to put full energy into my Norwex career. The next stepping stone to fulfill my destiny and my journey. I know because I believe.
Right now, I am hatching chicks. Alfred, Bert, Chicky Cheep Cheep, Duck, Eggatha, Frisbee, Ginny, Iggy, and our future little J... THIS I have manifested and THIS I will enjoy until they go to very happy homes.
Seriously, I never thought I would say this. OH MY GOSH!!! I have this mother in my program this year that I SWEAR is setting me up for a major complaint. SO... I am going to write out of anger and frustration. I have been working with kids and licensed in my current state for 14 years. YES, 14 years. Out of that 14 years I have had 2 families, TWO!!!!!!, out of the last 70+ families who have gone through my program that I have not been able to agree on certain situations and have asked them to leave.
Family #1: ALWAYS late. My dog bit the daughter after the daughter tried to run her over with a shopping cart. I would have bit her too. Rudy was a wiener dog!! It was her only protection. She didn't draw blood, but did leave a mark. The parents wanted me to lock up my dog. I tried and all she did was wine. HELLO, my dog was on Prozac and Valium for her anxiety already and now I have to lock her in a cage in the basement for 10 hours a day just because your 2 year old daughter wants to run her over with a play shopping cart while the sweet dog is lying in the sun??? Rudy was sharing her space for goodness sake!!! So, here is a disclaimer. I am fired up, therefore, I don't have to worry about proper grammar, spelling, or anything that is correct in the English language. I JUST GET TO WRITE!!!!!! Yay. That makes me feel better.
So, you ask, what happened to the family? I fired them. I called Animal Control and my daycare licensor and told them everything. I really don't hide anything, ever. The Animal Control guy told me " dogs are like people with their personalities. They have a hard time forgiving. If she bit this girl once, she will do it again. Get rid of the family". THAT is what I did. Rudy lived happily with the daycare kids for many happy, fat, sunning years.
The second family. I held onto them for 4 years until all the rule testing, policy changing, and contract pushing behavior finally broke me. When the dad walked through my door, my nerves bunched. My skin crawled, and I tensed up. The problem was, I liked this guy (a little). He really did (does) have good qualities. We just out grew our parenting relationship. It was time to move on. Believe me, there is more of a story here, but I don't want to write it at the moment.
The current situation. I am dealing with a mom. HELICOPTER mom. I found out on Sunday that basically she does not trust my supervision or my ability to watch and keep her daughter safe. OH MY GOSh! Why the heck does she leave her kid here??? She wants me to be able to see her every minute of the day even though our Rule #2 says we can be within sight or sound. I haven't broken ANY rules!!! This lady is a daycare licensor. She is a past provider. She of all people should understand how this business works. She should understand how we have to adapt to surroundings and structure our day to make everyone safe. She sees the bad programs out there. WHY is she choosing the last 2.5 weeks of my program to tell me she has not trusted my supervision this whole year? Why???
My dad once told me that when he and my mom were not getting along, they always seemed to get in a fight right before my dad would go rattlesnake hunting. It would leave him with an inability to have complete fun while he is gone. He was always left with the feeling of unrest. Just as my mom was left with that same feeling as he was out shooting the snakes. Did they make up when he returned? Maybe. It obviously wasn't enough though.
Is this mom doing the same thing? Honestly, I feel she is so miserable in her current job and situation. She wants to be home with her kids. She is struggling with the idea that someone else is taking care of her kids. Her whole mission for staying home was to be the stay at home mom. To be the one in charge. As soon as she entered the work force she gave up a certain amount of control. The main part was control of her kids. What she doesn't understand is I have been there. I get it. In my 16 years as a mom, I left the home for one school year to work at another school. It was horrible on us all. I reopened my home to continue daycare. During my time off though, I never accused in a passive aggressive way, the people who here taking care and loving my children.
She has broken something in me that I have been working on healing for the last 5 years. A part of my insecurity, a part of my heart, and a part of my vulnerability that was scared years ago when I worked for the dragon.
I try hard. I work 2 businesses (Is that the problem?). I love the kids in my program and trust myself they are safe and happy. I have 2 assistants to help. I cover my basis. I follow the rules. When someone tells me I am doing something wrong, IT HURTS!!!
So, I told John why I was so upset. I live in the same town. I live in the same community. I run with similar people. I do care what people think. I know I shouldn't, but I do. I can't help it. I work in customer service. I like to make people happy. I DON'T WANT HER GOING AROUND TOWN BAD MOUTHING ME AND THE BUSINESS I HAVE WORKED HARD FOR!!! She is this type of person who would.
Here is another thing. I am concerned. Strange markings. Strange marks on the body. Trying to blame things on me. WHAT is going on at home? This is something I question if I should report. Is this family safe at home? Oh my gosh, that is all I can say about that.
So basically, I feel this mom is setting me up. She wants me to watch her daughter like a hawk (I will). I have to or if she gets hurt in any way SHE will attack. John wants me to give them notice and have their last day be Friday. He has a good point of why considering he has seen SO many families come through this program. Her complaint is not an usual one and considering she can't back this "suspected" injuries up, he feels she is reaching for a reason to taint my perfect record of no parent complaints and sue us for all we have. She is obviously feeding her daughter lines of BS. Her daughter talks at my house.
Oh people. I need to go to bed. I did not get everything out that I wanted to. I will have to finish later. At least I got some of my feelings out. This lady is a bully. a bully. I can't believe in my adult life I am dealing with a bully. wow. Stay tuned. 12 school days left with this beautiful child and her confused and sad mother...
I love teaching children the basics of how to do some of those little life skills that most people never take the time to realize the skill even needs to be taught. Let's look at cutting for instance. Do YOU remember learning how to cut? Probably not. However, someone DID teach you at some point in your life.
So how do you teach a child to use scissors? I am sure there are many ways, but I have my own. It is called the "Thumbkin Technique".
Most of us know the "Where is Thumbkin" song. If you don't, "google" it.
Step 1 in my teaching children to cut is to teach them this song. After they know the song and the names of each finger, we are ready for step 2.
Step 2 is to show them the scissors and talk about the different size holes. Here is what I say to them. "Okay kids, you have a small hole and a larger one. Remember Thumbkin? Well, he has a VERY important role in cutting. He gets to be in the driver seat (the small hole). His friends, Pointer and Middle Man, get to be the passengers (large hole)." Show the children what you mean by demonstrating how to position your fingers.
Step 3 is said this way, "The most important thing to remember is Thumbkin NEEDS to be able to see where he is going so he can show Pointer and Middle Man the way. The way Thumbkin can see where he is going is by ALWAYS looking at the ceiling. If he is not looking at the ceiling, he gets lost and starts to turn around." At this point, show the children what it looks like to have your wrist twist around resulting in your thumb pointing down. You can also show how hard it is to cut paper this way.
Step 4 is encouraging the children to make sure Thumbkin is looking at the ceiling. If you see their wrist turn, simply say "Where should Thumbkin be looking?"
The names of the fingers can also be used when teaching the pincer grasp. Place the pencil toward you. Have Thumbkin and Pointer "pinch" the top closest to the lead and have Middle Man "kick" (flip) the pencil over. The "kicking" made Middle Man tired, so now he needs to rest on Ring Man and Pinky while at the same time letting the pencil use him as a pillow.
Just remember the next time you tie your shoe, zip your zipper, or button your shirt that SOMEONE taught you how to do that. Our little friends need guidance and patience and being a part of a child's first skill learning is priceless. YOU are a teacher. Be proud.
When you don't take someone's advice are your really being disrespectful to them, or true to yourself?
So, I have 23 days left before I retire from my career as a Preschool teacher/daycare provider. I have worked with children for the past 24 years in a variety of roles. I have met a number of parents, most of them have been amazing.
However, there are always those who leave an impression and unfortunately, it is not always the most positive. My last 4 weeks are ahead of me and for the past 8 months I have been dealing with a parent who I really thought was going to be one of my favorites this year. Instead, I have been met with almost a Jekyll/Hyde personality. One moment she is amazing to talk to, great to brainstorm ideas with, and seems to be so happy with the program I run. Next, there are the email lectures... In the past, this parent ran her own program. I will say, not as long as I have, but nonetheless, still had her own daycare. I really feel as if her need to return to work outside the home along with watching her youngest be cared for by someone else, has led to sadness, confusion, doubt, anger, and finally the need to control as much as possible.
There have been a number of things that have happened this year that are what I would consider "normal". Kids showing butts, lice, HER daughter teaching about the middle finger, etc... Kid stuff. Throughout these times, I have communicated to all the parents when these things happen, and have been met with understanding and even laughter from all the parents except one. From this particular parent, I have learned to expect the dreaded email containing opinions, suggestions, and stories of how "she did things". Well, that is great and all, but it sometimes leaves me wondering how I have made it all these years without her advice?
9 out of my 10 parents think my ideas are great. They think this program is great. I am not going to change what is not broken for the majority, just because one parent cannot accept that she is not in charge.
Honestly, I find the emails condescending and almost of a bullying nature. I am now being accused of not valuing or appreciating their concerns. She even went so far as to say she feels she has not been impactful. Seriously? If she would take the time to meet with me and have a back and forth conversation, instead of her email rants, she would learn my heart. She would learn why I do things the way I do, and why I also feel I have addressed as much as I can and have the right and choice to not make the changes she has suggested. AGAIN, MY PROGRAM. NOT HERS.
This leaves me without sleep, a sore tummy, and a frustrated heart that someone so "GOD" loving would not take the time to have a face to face conversation and to LISTEN to someone else's point of view. She could grow as a person by this. Instead I have to accept I am being judged on a daily basis, talked about behind my back, and looked at as an inadequate provider. Keep in mind, this is the lady who goes to school board meetings and raises a stink about kids not being able to have conversations because of all the electronic devices.
She reminds me of a boss I had a few years ago. THE DRAGON. This lady constantly cut me down and told me I wasn't good enough. It has taken me a long time to get past that and there is part of me that never will. THIS mom is now DRAGON JR. She is doing the same thing but in her email sort of way. I will not take this. The more she pushes, the more I push back.
I have run a good, respectable program for almost 17 years. I WILL NOT go out with any more scars. I am great person and I am above being talked down to. I will abide my time with her, love her daughter continuously every day, and continue to count down the days until I move onto the next chapter of my journey.