Tuesday, February 9, 2016

5 Years Later

I usually don't pay much attention to the Facebook memories that is at the top of my newsfeed every morning. However, when I came across this post I had a 'wow' moment.

That post from 2011 really did start it all. That post started my daycare, started my business (and in relation, all of my businesses--this site, my books), and started a career path that I never dreamed about. I promise this won't be a post about how my businesses began or how I never thought I'd be where I am today. I've written enough of those already. No, this is a 5 years later kind of post. A this is where I was and this is where I am type.

When I started my in-home daycare I didn't know how it would work out. I didn't know if it was something I would continue doing (spoiler alert: I've kept at it). I didn't even know if I would like it. I honestly didn't know if I could love someone else's child(ren) as my own. Turns out I can. A lot. When I say I have three kids I laugh because I spend just as much time worrying about the kids I take care of as I do my own.

When I first started daycare, our play area was the extra room in the house. Most of our days were spent in that little room because I was unsure about having the play area in our main living area. That extra room is now kid #3's room and the play room is also our main living area. Oh, and I love it. I don't have very many "grown up things" around my house, but it's safe. I don't have to worry about something breaking because it's all kid proof. I can actually walk out of the room without worrying (too much). I still use baby gates and consider it exercise when I hurdle over them each day.

I didn't fully know about sensory activities, scheduled activities, or the ins and outs of childcare my first few months of daycare. I let my "original four" be my guide and learned and grew with them. I've spent countless hours reading books, attending seminars, meeting with provider groups, and researching things from the best baby products to toys to meals.

I can now open up my cupboards any day of the week and whip up a sensory activity. I do this thing called lesson planning (shameless plug, we sell them in our shop!).  I still spend countless hours (still) researching, coming up with activities to do, and what each age group of children can learn from that activity. Then I write about it.

I didn't know that five years later I would be considered an "expert" in daycare and parenting. Some days that scares the crap out of me because a lot of my "expertise" is trying it, sometimes failing, sometimes not, mostly winging the every day, but willing to talk about my experiences. Sometimes I think it's cool, sometimes I'm honored, and other times I'm absolutely dumbfounded by others interest in the day to day of our lives.

I had no idea that opening a daycare would also lead to more and more doors opening. Who knew that by opening a daycare, I'd get sooo many requests for an inside look at my daycare that I'd start a blog? Who knew that by starting a blog I would take up writing once again and begin writing for major online sites? Who knew that I'd grow my blog into a business and gain a kick ass business partner? Who knew that writing the blog would encourage me to write children's books? Who knew that opening my own business would make me a leader and an Influencer in motherhood and childcare? Who knew that I would gain financial freedom by starting my own businesses?

A lot has changed in the five years since I began daycare. It all started with one simple post on Facebook. It goes to show how one simple thing can lead to things I could never dreamed of.