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I've got some fairly big ishoos with my CM, but it's all a bit awkward - please help!

(60 Posts)
bohemianbint Thu 24-Jul-08 11:50:58

I suppose it's not the biggest of deals at the moment as DS (23 months) only goes 3 hours a week, mostly, although a couple of weeks ago he went for 2 days, so it's all a bit random.

The problems are:

* the tv is on ALL THE TIME in the background. Even on nice days I'm not sure they even get into the garden.

* they never go out and do anything. In fact am not sure if they do anything when they stay in, I get the impression the kids play with toys or watch tv, there's no reading or activities or anything as far as I know.

* DS is fed in a pushchair in the kitchen and I now find out he sleeps in the pushchair as well. Or doesn't, as it turns out. He was always put down in a seperate room in a cot as he's a bit of a nightmare to settle and will only ever sleep if there's nothing else going on. I also wasn't told that this had changed and had been takign round blankets and his light show thing, thinking that he used them in his cot.

And finally, (and this is the latest thing that has really made me cringe) when we went round last week, it was raining, and DS ran off up the garden. I went after him to take him in and nearly trod in a huge pile of dog crap. Now, I understand that she would no doubt have cleaned it up if the weather was nice and the kids were able to play outside, but it makes me cringe thinking there's probably dog shit residue all over the garden.

The only reason I haven't stopped him going is that she's absolutely lovely, really flexible (will look after DS at the drop of a hat) and DS has been going for about a year and really likes her. As I say, he's not going for long periods, on the whole, so am loathe to shake things up, especially as am due to have another baby any time and don't want to unsettle DS up any more than necessary. When I've asked her about what they do or expressed concern about all the tv she has assured me that it isn't on all the time, and sometimes they just listen to music - but I've been there at all different hours of the day and have never seen the tv off, or seen them drawing, or doing anything.

Am I being too precious about this, or should we look for alternatives? I just worry about the quality of the care he's getting; we are paying for it and I feel a bit shortchanged if all he does is watch tv!

RachieB Thu 24-Jul-08 12:04:14

i would look for alternatives TBH yes!
though can see your predicament as may be hard to find someone else to offer just 3 hrs care

i wouldnt be happy with my child not doing anything though!

even in wet weather they can / should still go out!

and have activities set up in the house
no books ?!!!!

and wtf doesnt she have / use a highchair / booster for feeding ?!

stroppyknickers Thu 24-Jul-08 12:08:59

You know what? He's safe, he's happy, so he does nothing for 3 hours a week. It's not going to kill him. Sometimes things aren't perfect but they work. Ask about the dog poo - I always do with friends who have dogs. Ask if she sprays disinfectant/ whatever.

bohemianbint Thu 24-Jul-08 12:12:17

Re the feeding - I dunno, it really bothers me. What also did my head in was that DS is really independent and refused to be fed almost a year ago. He feeds himself entirely, and to be honest, I'm really pleased about it! And then a couple of weeks ago she asked me whether I had thought of letting him feed himself - wtf?! Turns out she spoon feeds him, in the push chair. I suppose it would be difficult for him otherwise, as the pushchair obviously doesn't have a tray, but it really annoyed me when I heard that, it just seems like such a backwards step and an odd thing to do. sad

Kewcumber Thu 24-Jul-08 12:14:42

for three hours? I wouldn;t stress about it tbh (though perhaps mention your concern about the dog poo if its important to you). Does it really matter that much if a 2 year old goes without a nap one day a week - mine would have managed just fine by then.

If you are going to need full/more days I would look for other CM's but watching tv for 3 hours (or even having it on in the background) isn't such a huge problme is it?

ruddynorah Thu 24-Jul-08 12:14:49

if it is 3 hours a week and you need her to be super flexible then i'd leave it as is. does he need to nap in the 3 hours?

if you need her for longer then i would look for someone else. but then of course someone offering proper activities, more structure and trips out will probably be more booked up and so less flexible for you.

for example if you want him to be 'doing' stuff then maybe a nursery is an option. obv more expensive, would need to be more than 3 hours a week, but potentially more flexible, can fit in extra sessions. just a thought. depends what you want from your childcare i suppose. dd goes to nursery 2 afternoons and 'does' a lot. loads of artwork etc, she brings home, things i don't really do with her.

greenday Thu 24-Jul-08 12:17:42

For 3 hours a week, I'd rather he stay indoors and safe within reasonable standards of course (and not neglect him, IYKWIM) .. rather than go outdoors and be subjected to risk of cars, etc.

And again, if he's happy and safe ... it's all that matters to me. You'll be able to make for to him when you are with him.

Kewcumber Thu 24-Jul-08 12:17:50

my cm does virtually no artwrk drawing reading etc but them we do that at home and he spends a lot of time playing in teh garden with her boys which he doesn't do at home so I don't mind one bit.

My CM also has the Tv on quite a lot but it doesn;t worry me as DS really isn't that interested and mostly he's in the room with the toy cars and no TV on.

RachieB Thu 24-Jul-08 12:18:23

hmmm seems like she is doing what she wants regardless of what has been discussed initially ?

eg the feeding / sleeping routines?

must have really thrown him on those 2 full days?

i agree if only 3 hrs a week tis not so bad and you could "put up with it" due to her flexibility

but i think you need to sit down and discuss with her regardless!

does she have many other mindees ?

bohemianbint Thu 24-Jul-08 12:19:23

If it was just the 3 hours I wouldn't stress too much, (removes the nap issue!) although the feeding thing does bug me. But in the last month or so, one way or the other he's gone for quite a few whole days.

I have been considering just dropping it altogether as I'm not working at the moment (and won't be for a bit as about to pop!) and we are stretching ourselves to pay for what is, ultimately a luxury (and a bit of a lifeline sometimes!) He kept going after I left work to keep him familiar with it and to keep our options open but I'm now probably going to set up as freelance sometime next year, so it's not entirely necessary.

EffiePerine Thu 24-Jul-08 12:21:52

I fhe's going for whole days and he's not going outside, she isn't following whatever that code of practice is for early years (can't remember the name)

is she a registered CM

is she part of your local CM network?

I'd look around for other options TBH or havea good chat with her about your changing expectations if he's there longer than you anticipated, e.g. no activities fine for a few hours but if he's going often you'd like him to do x y z and get outside etc.

ThursdayNext Thu 24-Jul-08 12:22:50

I would share all your concerns if he was going there much
But if she is flexible and nice and your DS is happy and it's just a few hours a week I wouldn't worry about it, I think it's quite unusual to find this kind of arrangement and your DS will have enough changes coming his way with the new baby
I might (nicely) query the eating in the pushchair, does the cm not have enough space at the table?

Romy7 Thu 24-Jul-08 12:23:54

for 3 hours i wouldn't be bothered - it's only 1 meal and 1 nap at the most, and no 23 month old is going to sit quietly in a pushchair unless he wants to - he'll soon demand out and activity. and even if it is 3 hours tv? well, not great, but hey ho. a nursery would be more expensive - we pay about £25 for a morning or afternoon session, but it would be more structured in the ways you want, and the ways you don't want (ie same day each week)
and if it's raining - i don't clear my garden either, but i do it when the sun comes out and the kids want to go outside - i'm sure she'd do the same - it's unlikely that she'd chance any minded child stepping in/ crawling in anything. presumably she is ofsted registered etc?

bohemianbint Thu 24-Jul-08 12:26:28

thursday - she doesn't have a table!

She is registered though...Just off to pick him up from there, back in a bit!

jimjamshaslefttheyurt Thu 24-Jul-08 12:26:33

Drop the full days, but keep the 3 hours.

I wouldn't be keen on using someone like this for full time childcare, but if my son's go to say my Mum's for 3 hours they would just potter whilst she got on with stuff.

A lifeline is worth having.

ThursdayNext Thu 24-Jul-08 12:28:31

No table? How wierd! Is that OK with OFSTED?

If you can afford it she could be a big lifeline for the occasional half days respite when you've got a newborn.

2point4kids Thu 24-Jul-08 12:31:35

I'd keep him there for just the 3 hours at a time until baby is born and you are all settled again and then I'd either find another CM or I'd put him in nursery for a day or two a week.

Kewcumber Thu 24-Jul-08 12:32:22

how can a cm not have a table - what does she eat her own dinner from.

Agree I would stick to the 3 hours if you don't actually need more.

RachieB Thu 24-Jul-08 12:38:19

lol even if she doesnt have room for a table then surely a feeding chair is a requirement??

what about mindees too old for a buggy ? where do they eat sofa ? floor ?!

HappyChildminderBerkshire Thu 24-Jul-08 13:55:02

Jojomamanbebe does portable booster seat type highchairs, you could always buy one and take it each time as eating in a stroller is a health issue - he could choke if he was lying back a bit. I'd even prefer my LO to sit on the floor and eat off a plate to sitting in a pushchair, that doesn't sound safe at all.

bohemianbint Thu 24-Jul-08 14:18:09

I think they have a fold down table in the front room but it would only seat a couple of people and I don't get the impression it gets used. I think if kids get too old they sit on the floor. Not exactly ideal!

reethi96 Thu 24-Jul-08 14:20:07

I wouldn't be happy with that kind of set up. I don't think you are being precious at all.

jillyj Thu 24-Jul-08 15:09:03

how will she be doing eyf then!

Anna8888 Thu 24-Jul-08 15:15:20

Your CM's standards of childcare (standard of living, even) sound very basic. However, as others say, unless you think that your DS is in some kind of danger (and TBH the dog poo would make me wonder about standards of hygiene and whether they were adequate) it doesn't really matter too much for three hours a week if it is convenient to use this CM.

wotulookinat Thu 24-Jul-08 15:32:18

Stroppyknickers, can you spray your garden with disinfectant?

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