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 Post subject: Going full time
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:19 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2016 5:02 pm
Posts: 715
I've been lucky enough to be offered a great new job, but it's full time.

When my DCs were small I worked three days a week and recently increased that to four, but they're short days so I've always been able to drop off at school (didn't need to be in the office until 10).

This new job - which I've accepted - will be 9 to 5, five days a week. My DS is in secondary school now so it won't affect him too much - he'll be leaving the house before I do and I'll be home at a similar sort of time to now - but my DD is only in Y5 so it will be a big change for her. She'll need to go to breakfast club every day on top of the after-school childcare.

Can anyone reassure me that my DD will be fine? Maybe someone whose children have had full-day childcare for a period?

I'm lucky in a sense - from September, my DD can start to ease back on the after-school childcare and start coming home alone a few days a week - but she'll be in breakfast club until secondary school I think.

(The job is great and will offer a financial cushion that's important to us as a family, as well as being important to me as a productive member of society. But I'm still panicking that I'm making a huge mistake.)


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 12:26 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:44 am
Posts: 1680
Location: Reading
I went through a similar ramp up. The school started at 8:30 so we could drop them at 8:15 without it being classed as breakfast club so that wasn't too bad. After school care ran to 5:45 and she had to be there every day once I went full time. Sometimes she was at an afterschool club and sometimes it was straight ASC. She coped fine - a bit tired in the early few weeks but just took it in her stride really.
There were kids there who had done the full 7:45 to 5:45 5 days a week from the start which must have been hard for them but by yr5/6 they are pretty robust.


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 12:47 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 4:06 pm
Posts: 438
Congratulations on the job offer! :D

I think as far as your DC’s go they will be fine. You just need to make sure you manage your new arrangements and time effectively.

I’m assuming there’s a streathamdad who also works full time? Is there a possibility of him changing his hours slightly to allow a bit more flexibility? We had an arrangement where one of us would go in slightly late to allow school drop off and the other would go in early and finish early to allow after-school-club pickup. I appreciate you probably don’t want to start demanding flexi-time straight away with a brand new job, but if he’s been established at his place a while they might be more understanding (many organizations are prepared to be flexible so long as you do your required hours).

Will you both have longish commutes? The only issue we used to have is that the after-school-club stopped at 6pm sharp and if you were even 2 minutes late picking up you’d get fined and reprimanded. They didn’t seem to understand that occasionally there might be traffic jams or train delays that are completely out of your control! If you have a friend with a child at the after school club who you can arrange to pick each others up in an emergency that’s always useful (preferably one who commutes in a different direction!).

Also, if you take the job, have you considered what arrangements you’ll make during school holidays?


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 12:58 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2016 5:02 pm
Posts: 715
Thank you both :)

There is indeed a streathamdad, and he's keen to help out as far as possible. He's arranged to work from home at least once a week for the next few months so that there's always at least one day a week when I can go in early and leave later so that I can make sure I always cover the total number of hours I need to work.

Trains are my big worry. They've been more reliable lately but there won't be much leeway in the timetable before I'm either late for work in the morning or late for pick-up in the evening. I do have a few local friends who would be willing to pick up my DD if I'm very late, but I'm hoping that will be a rare occurrence.

Holidays are tricky. I don't really want them home alone for weeks on end, even when they're in secondary school, but full-time childcare (eg Supercamps or Barracudas) isn't right either once they get bigger. For this Easter, I've booked my Y7 DS into a Stagecoach programme for the week - it's 10 to 4, so not a full day and he's old enough to get there on his own. There should be some children his age and older there as well, which might make it feel less like childcare and more like fun.

Also as they get bigger it becomes easier for other people to have them - they might be spending a week or two with their grandparents over the course of the year.


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 5:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
Posts: 2845
Plenty of families run absolutely fine like this so there's no reason to think your DD won't be perfectly ok but I would be prepared for a period of adjustment. Whether one thinks it's a good idea or not in many ways those children who do it from the get go cope better because they don't know any different.
As you say the timing isn't perfect but it rarely is and if it's something you'd 'want' to be doing in a couple of years it would be shame to tin.fown the opportunity to find it doesn't materialise again.

I would be upbeat with your DCs but encourage them to talk to you about concerns so you can reassure and make adjustments where possible.

From my own experience and that of others the holidays are generally more of an issue than term time so definitely worth planning ahead!

Very best wishes for your new adventure!


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:21 pm
Posts: 160
Hi

Apologies but been manic at work & not had chance to respond....Congratulations on your new job

We've run very similar to this since DD has been at school for 5 years now! The key things that I've learnt along the way are:
Trying to do school homework when you come home is trying - so be good to check whether ASC will do it or not...
The time between coming home & bedtime is quite short & precious. My DD & I often take time to chat about the day & any issues whilst she's in the bath as time for us.
I have a calendar plan for the next 4 -6 weeks where i write down who / what /where /when so that I can look at a glance & know what's on (though i do wish DH would read it more!)
I work the summer holidays longer in advance as holiday clubs tend to get booked up early. We tend to take a family holiday that covers us for 2 weeks plus then the other weeks a mixture of holiday clubs & working from home / extra holiday days & friends play dates. I mix holiday clubs up - sports one day & arts the next for example. I have my eye on PGL breaks as she gets older with some of our family friends children of the same age
Friends - I have a few friends who can pick up in an emergency if I don't make it. In the summer holidays we sometimes share / reciprocate care between us.
Household duties - we share between us all. Beware of running yourself ragged if you try to work & do childcare & household duties. Things like online food shopping are a massive help because it means precious family time at the weekend isn't spent at the supermarket. We are lucky to be able to afford some household help with the cleaning. It became such an argument over whose turn it was was not worth it.
Weekends are more 'special' to spend some time together. We do try to alternate between an active weekend & one with downtime.
The ability to check my work email on my phone is essential - I can keep up with what I've missed ready for the next day. I sometimes work after DD has gone to bed or before she gets up in the morning. It might be just work reading - not necessarily with my laptop. I'm lucky that my employer is getting more flexible & is more focussed around the output rather than necessarily time in the office (partly driven by the lack of office space we have! :D

Best of luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
Posts: 2845
It does depend on ages and stages but worth remembering that offspring can be given some responsibility for basic household chores and that some can be done as a family - gardening, washing up etc can be times for chatting too.


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2018 7:55 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:14 am
Posts: 358
Hi Streathamum,
I am sure you can make this work just fine.
I’ve worked varying amounts since mine were born.
What follows may not be good for every family but has been useful to us.
I would agree the key is to keep your evenings as free as possible.
We have a Saturday rule that all household members change their own sheets. One less thing to nag in your mind and gives you the weekend to get them washed.
If you can afford it try to have enough uniform for the whole week.
We cook on Sun for Mon and Tues.Gets the week off to an easy start.
I would avoid too many activities which mean going out after you have got home.
I would concur that the holidays are often more tricky than the term.
Between us we always take some time off every holiday.
One day each at least at half term.
As mine got bigger they started to loathe going to places in holidays as a necessity.
The solution for us was the the daughter of a friend who was at uni.
She used to come round and look after them at home. Mine loved it. A chance to lounge around and bake etc.
If space allows might grandparents come to you?
Your children can then see friends etc and routine stuff like the dentist might get covered.
Last but not least try to save a days annual leave just for yourself.


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 Post subject: Re: Going full time
PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 6:26 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2016 5:02 pm
Posts: 715
Thank you to those who've responded, it's reassuring to hear from people who are making it work already.

Moon unit wrote:
We have a Saturday rule that all household members change their own sheets. One less thing to nag in your mind and gives you the weekend to get them washed.


If I ever managed to achieve this level of domestic cop-operation, I think I'd never complain about anything else again! Can I come and live with you?


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