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To cover children's holidays and sick days

(24 Posts)
Babieseverywhere Tue 30-Nov-10 10:29:11

I am thinking forward to when I go back to work and I asked my DH how many holiday weeks he had, trying to calculate how wide the short fall would be between two holiday allowance and the children's school holidays.

DH was taken aback and said that no way would he be taking his holiday to cover child care and wasn't that what childcare covers.

He is lucky at the moment that I am a SAHM and do all the childcare and sick cover but when I am working that will have to change....won't it ? Or is paid childcare the way to go.

When I go back to work in a couple of years, we'll have a 5 year old, 7 year old and 9 years old in school.

What can we expect to pay in terms of breakfast club, after school club in a standard week ? What cost is a holiday club per child ?

I just don't think any job I could get would cover so much child care and allow us to have any financial benefit at the end of the month.

Oh, we are talking a town in the North West for pricing purposes.

So does your DH's take on half of the sick cover and holiday cover for your children ?

Babieseverywhere Tue 30-Nov-10 10:31:14

DH was taken aback and said that no way would he be taking his holiday to cover child care and wasn't that what paid childcare covers*ed*.

TotalChaos Tue 30-Nov-10 10:35:58

I work p/t, DH does morning school run, I do afternoon one on days I work so I avoid wraparound.

short of a nanny, paid childcare does't cover sick children. my DH takes on most of the sick cover (as he does flexitime and can work from home if absolutely necessary) and I take on most of the holiday cover. at the moment there are some free holiday schemes.

possibly your DH is a bit erm naive, in not realising how much you have facilitated his work life by being SAHM. or possibly he's being selfish, if he expects you and not him to take holiday for the kids.

TotalChaos Tue 30-Nov-10 10:36:55

PS - DH has a point that annual leave probably won't cover all the school hols, so some holiday scheme is likely to be needed at some point

indiechick Tue 30-Nov-10 10:37:27

Yes he does, they're his kids too.
Obviously we try to be fair, but he has 37 days annual leave and I get 27, so he has to do the majority of the holidays. Think your husband may need to rethink.

ruddynorah Tue 30-Nov-10 10:38:11

Our wrap around club is 49 quid a full week. In holidays it's 75 for the full week. You can't use them for sick days though.fwiw we both work but dh does early hours, I do late, so illness, holidays, snow days aren't an issue.

Babieseverywhere Tue 30-Nov-10 10:44:42

"Our wrap around club is 49 quid a full week. In holidays it's 75 for the full week."

Per child ? So for three kids, we are looking at £600 in a normal month and £900 in the holiday...flipping heck that is a lot of money. No wonder people look for a school hours job. shock

WowOoo Tue 30-Nov-10 10:49:47

Dh does full time childcare when he's off and on holiday.

He does resent it a bit and we do try to work it so that he can enjoy some of his holiday child free. Me too.

Downside is we don't spend as much time together as a couple or as a family.

Sickness i usually cover as it's easy for me to work from home.

Lancelottie Tue 30-Nov-10 10:50:14

Hah! My DH got the hump last year when the only childcare I could book was 20 mins' drive from his work (and over an hour from mine) so he had to do the transport.

Pointed out that at least I'd booked something, and if he preferred to take time off, well...

Erm, yes, for three kids it costs a bloody fortune (though some places will do a modest sibling discount). In fact, £75 for the week is pretty good. Ours was £120 last year. Has he noticed how much it would have cost to replace you for these past several years?

fluffles Tue 30-Nov-10 10:53:09

so what does he want to do with his holiday? surely once you have children you spend your annual leave with them in the form of long weekends, half-term holidays etc??

titchy Tue 30-Nov-10 10:57:15

Won't be using his holiday to cover childcare?FFS what does he intend to do with his holiday then when you're at work and your children are in a holiday club? That presumably he will have to pay for as he is choosing paid childcare over looking after them himself. hmm what an arse.

FWIW during school time dh and I juggle school runs (sharing with other parents) between us. I work 80% of full time so do most of the school pick ups - dh covers what I can't (normally 1 or 2 days a week - he works flexibly).

I get good holiday entitlement with my job so between us dh and I cover all holidays expect for three in the summer. Each set of gradnparents does a week and we use anactivity scheme for the other week (at £200 per child for the week). It more or less works, but we can onlyafford in annual leave to have one week away in the summer.

ruddynorah Tue 30-Nov-10 11:03:33

Yes per child! It is actually cheap if you think that covers 7am to 6pm 5days a week. A childminder would cost more. Of course you may not need a full time place anyway, or wrap around every day.

Babieseverywhere Tue 30-Nov-10 14:32:59

"Has he noticed how much it would have cost to replace you for these past several years?"

Well, No. Neither of us have a clue how much childcare costs, hence the post. Bit shocking mind, I expected childcare around school to be much cheaper, not sure why I thought that mind. Guess it is because many mothers go back to work when their children start school.

So far, he has holidays when he likes. Usually Fridays to make long weekends and he'll often pick up DD when he is off and she loves him to do so.

I don't care ATM when he takes his holidays. As 1. he works very hard to support our family and 2. as a SAHM whenever he off work is fine by me, I'll always share his holidays as such. We don't have going away holidays so that is not an issue.

He won't be able to help with pickups or evening clubs. As he leaves the house before 6am to drive 120 miles to his work and is back after 4.30pm at the very earliest.

I don't think his boss would let him take emergency annual leave to cover children sick leave either, guess we'll have to check that nearer the time.

DH is a very good husband and cooks nearly every night and helps around the house when needed (he 'helps' as I consider the housework and childcare my job ATM) I am just trying to plan for the future a bit.

titchy Tue 30-Nov-10 15:05:54

Just to point out his boss has to let him have emergency dependent's leave! But having sick kids is a pain I agree and you'll need to plan around this. Childminders may be able to help. A live-in nanny will almost certainly sort this problem out for you. Grandparents are useful, but you may not have any of those options open to you - working from home perhaps. Otherwise it is unpaid dependent's leave.

Your dh really should be using some of his annual leave when they are on school holidays though.

MollieO Tue 30-Nov-10 15:09:28

Holiday club here is £30 a day for 9am to 4.30pm and £1.50 per half hour for extended care. I pay £40 a day, £200 per week. The extended day is per family rather than per child (although I only have one).

titchy Tue 30-Nov-10 15:54:47

As a VERY rough rule of thumb budget on spending £5 per hour per child for childcare.

WentBlank Tue 30-Nov-10 19:23:13

I have a good amount of AL and take 2 days off a week every school holiday to look after my son (plus one full week during the summer)

Dad runs his own business so doesnt get AL as such - but he usually takes his son to work with him once a week during the holidays....and our son goes to a club (£10 per day !!8.45am-5.15pm and we are in London!!) and sometimes I look after friends kids on my day off and they have my son on their day off. oh and sometimes my mum will have him for the day....or I will MAKE his brother (20) have him - but i dont really agree with this so only do it when I am desperate.

frgr Fri 03-Dec-10 13:21:12

"I don't think his boss would let him take emergency annual leave to cover children sick leave"

that's just what has to happen when both parents go back to work. surely you can't plan to cover all the one off days with your employer? that's a very good way to alienate your boss' goodwill ("i have a husband, but his job is much more important than the one i have here, so i'm off today.")

DH and I take it in turns to cover sick absences (in blocks). that way you don't piss off 1 employer too much. i'm not sure how else your H wants to do this - it's just part of life when you both work. didn't he realise this when you are planning to go back?

as for holidays, we each get 2 or 3 days to keep for long weekends together, but yes, generally we spend most of our holidays on emergency days off, childcare etc

so it's not as black and white as your OP.... i.e. your DH says "all used for having a holiday off work" vs. you saying "all used for childcare cover"... we have a small mix with the bias towards your solution.

i think that's pretty normal for colleagues and family though - i can't believe how daft your H is being. and 37 days holiday a year is MASSIVE! he doesn't realise how easy his life has been made by you being a SAHP, and the allowance millions of other people get.

time to hit him with a dose of reality i think!

bigchris Fri 03-Dec-10 13:26:07

Did you need to work for the money? Because if not it's easier to stay at home until they're at secondary school if your dh's job isn't flexible

frgr Fri 03-Dec-10 13:33:17

ok just to add,

i've done a quick poll in the office here, and in general people are saying that they save about one third to 50% of their holiday days for childcare stuff, either to cover childcare days when school is off or for emergencies.

so i think i am more conservative than average, because we both get 28 days of holiday each year and only keep about 3 for "ourselves" outside Christmas/New Year when offices are closed. so we have to take them then. That leaves about 20 days that we EACH allocate for child care, really. about 75% of DH and my total allowance.

it might help to show your DH this thread - if he's so clueless about what 2 working parents lives entails, he might need the jolt of this to show him how lucky he is/how normal mums and dads deal with it...

Babieseverywhere Sun 05-Dec-10 00:25:47

The deal is that DH support the family whilst they are babies, then I'll go back to work. We can live on one wage but things are very tight at times. Some months we get a few nice things like a takeaway, cinema outing or computer game. Other months we can really struggle, we recently went nearly a year without a freezer and the boiler broke and left us without hot water for a couple of months. But they are just luxery things.

But I need to make sure that going back to a job which won't make things harder for DH, unless we see a decent financial benefit for our family. I bet if by giving up most of his holidays will enable us to live a little better, then that will be alright.

I have got a couple of ideas for home based business. One I am starting after christmas. I guess the best thing would be for this business to make a reasonable modest income during the school hours. Or I hope I can get a very will paid career job after an 8 year break.

Thanks for the posts, DH does read/post occasionally on mumsnet, so I'll post him this way at some point.

violethill Sun 05-Dec-10 10:07:43

I think you hit the nail on the head with your comment about neither of you having a clue about what childcare costs. If you'd returned to work when your children were pre schoolers, you'd Realise that £900 per month for 3 children would be absurdly cheap! In many areas it's more than that per child!

The thing you have to look at is the money you're making over the entire year. Yes, august may leave you out of pocket- but overall you'll be better off. Plus there are a lot of other reasons to work apart from the money. If you've been a SAHM with 3 children, you deserve to move on and have a life outside the home once they're in school

panettoinydog Sun 05-Dec-10 10:26:01

Bear in mind that you'll probably only need childcare for the eldest child for two years or so.

Babieseverywhere Sun 05-Dec-10 17:14:51

As my youngest is three months old, so with luck it will be a while before I am looking for a full time job. I'll be trying to get bits and pieces if/when I can find things to do around the children.

Thanks for the posts. Yes, I know we have to look at a whole year to see the true benefit and I'll make sure I do that.

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