A Day in the Life
By: Christine Hersom
(4 min. read)
Welcome to the wild and wacky world of daycare! I am here to give you a sneak peek into the delightful (usually) chaos that is my daily life as a home daycare provider. So, buckle up, grab a snack (preferably one that doesn’t have too many crumbs), and get ready for a rollercoaster ride through a typical day in the life of an in-home daycare provider!
The sun hasn’t risen yet, but I am awake and preparing for my day. My morning routine consists of chugging a cup of coffee and mentally preparing myself for the whirlwind of energy that is about to come bursting through the door. Children start arriving at 5:45.
The first little munchkins arrive, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to take on the day. Meanwhile, I am still trying to remember if I brushed my teeth this morning. As more kids trickle in, the place turns into a hive of bustling activity. It’s a lot like herding cats, except the cats are all hopped up on juice boxes and munchkins.
By now, the boys that have tablets have arrived, and the sighs and screams of Roblox play are loud and rambunctious. They are allowed to use their tablets until I return from the bus stop at 8:30.
This is not a horrid winter, so standing at the end of the driveway waiting with the elementary children to catch the bus isn’t as painful. I hate the cold, and it seems when it’s cold, the bus takes longer. (Not true. But allow me to whine.)
A normal day consists of seven to ten minutes outside waiting on the bus. This past Thursday, the day was anything but ordinary. When I go to the bus, the children inside are sequestered in their playroom until I return. On this particular day, all hell broke loose. Foster let the big dog outside, and it took me 40 minutes to convince the dog to come back inside. The pug does not like to go to the toilet outside when it is cold, so she chose instead to poop in my granddaughter’s room. I didn’t realize this until it was time to pick clothes…I stepped right in it. One little boy vomited as soon as he walked in…I sent him right back out for a trip home. One little girl decided she wanted to be in the living room, so she ripped the retractable gate right off the wall. This all happened in ten minutes. I radioed my daughter to send help!!
It’s craft time! Trying to convince a plethora of little boys to make presents for their parents was equal to trying to convince the dog to come back inside. They love the glue, glitter, and googly eyes…not for art but for an artistic version of a food fight. I’m just trying to get through this without a major glitter bomb explosion.
Lunchtime! Trying to get a group of picky eaters to agree on anything is like negotiating a peace treaty between warring nations. “No, we cannot have cookies for lunch.” “Yes, I promise broccoli won’t kill you.” “No, you cannot trade your sandwich for someone else’s pudding cup.” It’s a battle of wills, and I am determined to win (or at least get them to eat something green).
Naptime, aka the calm before the storm. As I tiptoe around the room, trying to get everyone to settle down, I can’t help but envy the peaceful slumber that awaits these tiny humans.
The afternoon slump hits, and the kids bounce off the walls like rubber balls in a pinball machine. It’s a race to keep up with their boundless energy, and I’m pretty sure I’ve broken a personal record for the number of times I’ve said, “Inside voices, please!”
After being well rested, the littles are hungry. Afternoon snack begins. I find that I don’t want to give them anything with sugar. The nap has them full of boundless energy. Do we really need Oreos?
The afternoon buses arrive, and a new group of children add to the fray. If anyone has any ideas of visiting me during the week, I advise you to avoid my home from three to five. School children are wild after spending six hours learning. Preschoolers are wild after a refreshing nap and a snack. Excitement is brewing as they all realize the day is ending and their parents will start arriving.
The last little munchkin has left, and I can take a moment to reflect on the day. It may have been chaotic, loud, and, at times, downright exhausting, but it’s also filled with laughter, creativity, and the joy of seeing life through a child’s eyes.
Being a daycare provider is no walk in the park, but it’s also one of the most rewarding jobs out there. Sure, there are days when I feel like I am juggling flaming torches while riding a unicycle, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The laughter, hugs, and endless questions about why the sky is blue or why cows don’t wear hats are all part of the magic of working with kids.
As for me, I’ll be back at it bright and early tomorrow, armed with snacks, band-aids, and an endless supply of patience. Because no matter how chaotic, messy, or downright exhausting it may be, the joy of spending each day with these kids makes it all worthwhile. And hey, at least I’ll never have a dull moment!
If you ever need a good laugh or a reminder of the simple joys in life, just spend a day in the life of a daycare provider. It’s a wild, hilarious, and heartwarming adventure that I wouldn’t trade for any job in the world. If you’ll excuse me, I have some finger paintings to hang, a mountain of toys to handle, and a new gate to replace. Until next time, keep the snacks handy and the silly songs at the ready!
Christine Marshall Hersom
All Things Wellness, LLC
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