The Quest for the Perfect Childminder

Its been awhile, I know. I was about to write about my recent quest to find a childminder.

Now of course, as we all know, ideally I’d love to have the perfect childminder ie someone who will take care of my child like me but not me. This faces two problems: one is that it is impossible to find that person who ticks ALL the boxes and two, I would be very very jealous if there is a perfect alternative! I’m gonna be zayan’s favourite person for a very long time! (until he realises his ayah is more fun and amazing to play with)

These are the options for childcare:

1. Nursery
Problem: Inflexible working hours to our shift work.

2. Childminder
Someone we can drop zayan off at their house. Professional childminders are registered with Ofsted (national organization that does regular checks and certifies childminders, and has regulations which childminders must abide to).

Problem: Trying to find a good one.

3. Live-out nanny
Someone who comes to the house and look after baby. Most ideal situation as it’s in his own environment.

Cons: Much less socialising with other children.

(There is another option to get an amah from Brunei but apparently we can’t have one unless she works under my name for at least a year in Brunei. Also we are not yet comfortable in our close space of a flat to have a woman living in with us especially since I can have long hours working/doing night shifts. Unless she’s looking clearly menopausal or on the way. At which point – can she really make the long haul flight and live in UK?)

In the end, we opted for the second option. Except trying to find a good childminder isnt that easy!

Mostly I’ve searched via this website that shows profiles of childminders and also phoned several that was given to
me via my health visitor. I’ve looked at the options and excluded anyone who:

1. live too far (must be less than 2 miles away from our house)
2. cannot spell or type well on their profile. Including those who does not use fullstops and commas. These are all reflection of the person they are, I believe!
3. has dogs
4. new to the job
5. uptight hours

So really am not that fussy! Turns out people either have uptight hours or dont have space for lil zayan. (they can only have 1 child under the age of one years old under their care per session)

In the end, I found one: Muslim, speaks good english, italian and french, her assistant speaks arabic. They’re keen on implementing an islamic lifestyle: halal food, singing nasheed and teaching dua before meals etc.

(Actually she said that they dont have TV because ‘they dont find it beneficial’. oohhhh if only she knows what kind of tv shows i watch with baby ~~ cue ANTM opening music nananannanana Are you ready to be on top? ~~~~) She used to be nursery nurse, so her rooms were laid out like nursery style.

So obvioussslyyyy this all sounds great. She seems approachable and friendly, zayan is intrigued with her – as opposed to screaming at sight of her, she has background as a nursery nurse, we’ve checked her crb and she’s not a criminal or terrorist.

But! She lives on the opposite direction of my journey to work! This means 1 hour commute + 30 mins of sending zayan to her place & then gping back to normal route = A lot of driving in a day!

The other option is for M to buy a car and send zayan off . But we dont know where he’ll be working this august onwards!! For all we know, it could be northampton or *horror of horrors* 2 hr away kampung boston.

So I thought I’ll try to find another one as backup plan. Eventually found one who has space for Zayan and possibly can work after 6pm (she didnt reject this idea). Went to her house and from the instant second I saw her, it was a blaring no.

She looked like a smoker (tar stained lips and teeth), gaunt looking, her hair looks like it hasn’t been washed for awhile and her carpet didnt look clean. She didnt talk much, didnt tell us her background until I interrogated properly. All in all, NO thank you. (That said her kitchen, play area and garden looked nice and clean)

Sigh. So back to square one.

I’m thinking – sod it, if my parents made sacrifices for me, I can do the same for Zayan (wake up earlier and spend longer driving)! And if it meant he’ll be brought up as a good muslim boy, just like how we want him to be, then insyaAllah akan dipermudahkan urusan. Amin.

Sekian terima kasih.

Love me

ps currently zayan is being taken care of by my sis in laws, who have been nothing but brilliant with him.

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