As a stay at home parent with one child, childcare is likely something that you have never considered. If you are trying to get pregnant with a second child, though, you may suddenly find yourself in need of more time to get things done without a little one constantly getting underfoot. You may also simply need more rest. The following options can help you juggle your time and the needs of your children while your family is growing.
Get a mother's helper
A mother's helper is similar to a nanny or babysitter, except they are generally not left fully unsupervised. They may come in a couple of times weekly or for a couple of hours a week. The tasks that a mother's helper performs depends on your needs. Some examples of appropriate duties include the following:
- Light chores around the house, such as dishes, folding laundry, or vacuuming the floor.
- Watching the children while you rest or relax in a different part of the home.
- Simply occupying the kids while you attend to household duties.
- Occupying an older child while you attend to the needs of an infant.
Mother's helpers can be adults, but it is also a popular position for young teens that aren't quite old enough to babysit on their own.
If you need to actually leave the house occasionally, such as for a weekly lunch date with friends or to run errands without a young child and an infant, scheduling a weekly home visit from a babysitter may be just what you need. This way you have someone come into your home to watch the kids with minimal disturbance to their regular routines.
Sometimes the overwhelming part is trying to balance the needs of a young child and a new baby. This is where daycare or preschool can be the best option, since it will afford you one-on-one time with the new arrival. When signing up for daycare or preschool, do so well in advance of the baby's arrival. You don't want your older child to become jealous or think you are pushing them away because you have a new baby. As an added benefit, you can schedule your prenatal appointments while your older child is at daycare.
You don't need to enroll in a full time course. A couple of full days or half days a week may be sufficient. Speak with the daycare centers in your area so you can find an enrollment option that works well for your family.