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What do you do when you need childcare after 6pm?

(64 Posts)
neenztwinz Sat 14-Mar-09 17:49:49

I am going back to work in July and my hours are 10-6. It's an hour's drive each way so I need childcare to 7pm ideally. But all the nurseries and childminders seem to shut at 6pm. What are my other options? 7pm is quite late for the children to be in chidcare anyway (they go to bed at 7 at the moment!) - they will be 14mo then - does anyone else have their kids in childcare till 7pm?

I am looking into getting a nanny (for twins - 2 days a week) but it might be too expensive or I might not be able to find one.

I could ask for compressed hours but would have to do 9.30-4.30 (ie no lunch break) cos we can't start before 9.30 and leaving at 5pm is awful for the traffic and I probably wouldn't be back in an hour then. I would rather do 10-6 but is it going to be possible?

FeelingLucky Sat 14-Mar-09 18:07:42

We have a nanny and it's worked out really well.
She does two days a week 8am-7pm, and three days DD goes to nursery until 3.30, so nanny picks her up and works until 7pm.

If your children are going to nursery, could you look for someone to do pick-up and look after them for an hour?

willowthewispa Sat 14-Mar-09 18:10:39

A nanny would be a good option, but you're right, very expensive. Maybe you could use a childminder/nursery and then advertise for someone who could pick up the children at 6pm, take them home, bath them and get them ready for bed for when you get in at 7pm?

If you have a local college, a childcare student might be happy to do this (though you could maybe get them to pick up at 5pm just to give them a couple more hours work to make it more attractive). Even better might be a nursery nurse if they go a nursery. I work in a nursery and would be more than happy to take a child home after I finish a couple of nights a week.

Nabster Sat 14-Mar-09 18:11:45

Years ago I was a live in nanny working 7-7 for a non working mum.

Could you consider live in help?

cat64 Sat 14-Mar-09 18:12:42

Message withdrawn

JenniPenni Sat 14-Mar-09 19:13:14

Do ask around at CMs. I work 7am to 7pm to cater for commuting parents... and others do too. I hope you find someone suitable soon

backintheUK Sat 14-Mar-09 19:18:09

I used to have same issue and one of the girls from nursery used to take him home for me and get him in the bath - he' d have had tea at nursery so only needed milk when I got back. Whilst I ended up with someone from nursery I also advertised in thethe local HE college where they did childcare quals and lots of the final yr students were available/able and realtively expreeinced and lots could drive so that worked out well for a awhile as well.
I did this for about 3 years and worked really well for me.


Doozle Sat 14-Mar-09 19:31:45

If you have twins, it may well be a cheaper option to have a nanny rather than paying for 2 children in a nursery ... depends on what your nursery charges.

IME, having a nanny is very flexible, they could have your little ones bathed and in pjs for when you got home.

And I wouldn't let the two days a week thing put you off. I've found many nannies looking for a two day job, as they work 3 days a week for someone else.

(Sorry! I'm a very recent convert to nannies after having DD in a nursery for almost 2 years and wish I'd done it earlier)

neenztwinz Sat 14-Mar-09 20:27:44

Thank you so much for all your replies. Not exactly sure what my days/hours will be yet (waiting to hear back from employer) so need to find that out first before going any further with childcare enquiries but you have given me lots to think about.

My DH could possibly arrange to be home at 6pm on days I work but his job is quite long hours (lawyer) so might be hard to be 100% sure he could do it every time, but his parents live nearby so perhaps they could do it when he is not able. The thought of having someone else do tea/bathtime is very appealing!

EvaLongoria Sat 14-Mar-09 21:02:28

Childminders are very flexible. I advertise 8-6pm but if parents want me to work till 7 or later I charge slighly more. So do ask around lots of childminders are flexible, as long as u understand u might have to pay slighly more for that last hour

FiveGoMadInDorset Sat 14-Mar-09 21:05:36

Neenz you would be surprised about nannies, my friend has one for one day a week.

Chaotica Sat 14-Mar-09 21:27:23

My CM works until 7 (even 7.30 if I'm stuck in traffic). She's lovely (so no compromise there) but it does mean that we have later bedtimes. Check out the local CM list - most say if they'll work later.

RachieB Sat 14-Mar-09 22:37:28

I used to nanny for a family with 4 children til 7.15pm

so all would be fed, and the younger 2 bathed and ready for bed

the older 2 would have done homework ,if any
and be seen of to various clubs / activities etc

I don't think you would have trouble finding a 2 day 9am - 7pm Nanny

and may be cheaper than a nursery til 5/6pm then help for an hour or so until your return

Good luck
try advertising on gumtree and netmums etc to see what the response is


Julesnobrain Sat 14-Mar-09 22:47:05

How about an Au Pair to do the collection / bathtime that way you are covered if the traffic is terrible. I have DS in primary school and after school club until 6pm and then DD in nursery until 6.30pm. The au pair collects on the days I can't and does snacks, playing, bath until 7.30pm

MrsPickles Sat 14-Mar-09 22:52:26

I have my DD in childcare 7.45am to 6.30pm (its not like that everyday, occasionally DH can drop off or pick up).
I pay double for before 8am and after 6pm
Should be OK if you can find someone who'll do it - you just need to look for CMs who are prepared to be flexible. There are loads of CMs who will do flexible/outside normal hours where I live because there is a large hospital and a lot of shift workers in the town. You could just shift DT's sleep times from 7am - 7pm (assuming they do 12 hours!) to 8am to 8pm or even 8.30-8.30 depending on how long you need in the morning to get them ready!

MollieO Sat 14-Mar-09 23:07:51

My childminder did 7am to 6.30pm and longer if needed. I returned to work 4 days a week when ds was 10 mths. Same hourly rate times number of hours.

I do compressed hours but legally the longest time you can work without at least a 15 min break is 6 hours.

neenztwinz Sun 15-Mar-09 08:59:57

I never thought finding childcare would be this complicated! Thanks again for all your replies.

Blondeshavemorefun Mon 16-Mar-09 08:16:56

agree that having a nanny may work out cheaper than having twins in a nursery

it will certainly make your life easier, as the nanny will come to your house, and if need be get your children up, dressed and breakfasted (if need to leave earlier than 9am) and then in evenings will have children fed and bathed - all ready for bed

if you do use a cm/nursery, you then have the added stress of collecting and then taking home and bath etc

other option is to use a nursery, and see if one of the staff there would take your twins home and bath them and have for an hr and babysit for you

AtheneNoctua Mon 16-Mar-09 11:17:58

HAving the children fed, bathed, and in their pyjamas is my absolutel favourite thing about having a nanny!

Another option might be an au pair / nursery combination where au pair is responsible for pick up from nursery and takes them home for bed and bath on those two days and then you could fill the rest of her 25 hours with a night b-sitting or some help round the house.

neenztwinz Mon 16-Mar-09 13:28:15

Yes that does sound good! Hopefully DH will be able to do all that (for free!) on the days I work, but I fear more often than not he'll call his parents to do it if he is stuck in work, and I don't like the thought of them in my house when I am not there.

I had considered an au pair but wondered whether I could cope with someone else living in my house. And even though they are cheap for the number of hours you get it is still more than £250 a month isn;t it and that is a lot of money as I won't really be earning (all my wage will go on childcare).

nomoreamover Mon 16-Mar-09 19:31:41

surprised all the local childminders shut at 6pm - have you rung and asked them if they would do til 7pm....I must admit I do work til whatever time I am needed but I charge a higher rate after 6pm though so be prepared to pay a little extra for that final hour.

nbee84 Mon 16-Mar-09 19:53:18

And don't forget the hidden costs of having an aupair - extra on food bills & heating, phones etc

neenztwinz Mon 16-Mar-09 20:01:03

I think we are going to ask DH's parents to pick them up from CM/nursery at 5pm, take them to theirs and give them tea, and DH will pick them up at 6pm-ish and bring them home and bath them. When PILs are on holiday DH can leave work a bit earlier. That way I get the double benefit of it costing less and all the work is done for me while I have a relaxing brew in the office before a leisurely drive home grin

AtheneNoctua Tue 17-Mar-09 10:27:14

Sounds like a good solution. Let us know when it all goes pear shaped. smile

(all childcare arrangement go pear shaped now a and then)

neenztwinz Sun 22-Mar-09 19:35:37

It has gone a bit pear-shaped already! DH's parents have said no to picking them up and giving them their tea! I am really annoyed. I understand they don't want to be tied, they are retired and want to go on holiday and stuff, but I thought on the days when they are home and not doing anything, they would quite like to take them for a couple of hours. It's only two days a week! But they said no, they have decided they are not doing anything like that for their grandkids. But they are having DH's sister's little boy one day a week for two months when she first goes back to work. hmmsadangry

So they will have to be at nursery till 6pm, I would really rather they were picked up at 4.30 and taken to have their tea, but it isn't to be. DH will have to finish work early those days and pick them up at 6pm and take them home for tea then.

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