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Am I crazy to consider 3 under 18 mths?

25 replies

becksmummy · 29/07/2007 12:38

Hi, I have been very quiet with enquiries since I started minding at the start of the year and then in the last few weeks have signed up 2 to start in sept and have had another enquiry from a mum of 2 children.

The problem is my dd is 14 mths, I have already signed up a little one who will be 1 the week before he starts plus 2 schoolies. This latest enquiry is for a schoolie and a 10mth old.

It fits ok with the numbers I am allowed but it will mean 3 under 18mths so am I mad to consider this or is it managable?? Any advice or experiences welcome, thanks

OP posts:

CarGirl · 29/07/2007 12:41

Not speaking from personal experience but the positives would be that developmentally they are at a similar age so you will just have to gear your day time with them for that (like in a baby or young toddler room at a nursery) In some ways that could be easier than have 3 year olds doing painting/cutting/stuff with fiddly little bits and then entertaining two young toddlers who want to join in!

You will need a triple buggy though!


Nemo2007 · 29/07/2007 12:53

thought you meant just in having kids,
To mind I would do it as they would all be at same stage.


becksmummy · 29/07/2007 13:02

Thanks for response so far, have either of you used a triple buggy? I dont need to worry about fitting one in the car (as car too small when I have all mindees) but how are they for getting places do they fit through doorways etc??

OP posts:

Nemo2007 · 29/07/2007 13:07

Sorry I am not a childminder I just have 3 under 3.2yrs myself and was being nosey. I have seen tandem triple buggies on ebay though.


Cloudhopper · 29/07/2007 13:11

Something in the back of my mind rings a bell about only being allowed to mind two children under 18 months. Or it might be under ones.

I think you are mad as well.


looneytune · 29/07/2007 13:19

If she's in England, she's allowed 3 under age 3 of which only 1 can be under 1


LoveMyGirls · 29/07/2007 13:35

Hi, i had 3 under 17mths (6mth old, 13mth old and 17mth old) 2 of them couldnt walk yet, it was fine, was hard work BUT they all slept at the same time some days and im sure if i'd have had them all abit longer they would have all slept at the same time most days.

Make sure you put a month settling in period where you can both cancel with no notice then if it is too much or baby wont settle you can end it quickly. Hopefully it will work out fine, HTH


becksmummy · 29/07/2007 13:36

Yes I am allowed to look after them within my numbers just dont know how practical it is to actually do?

Need to decide today as the mum wants to come and see me tomorrow!!

OP posts:

becksmummy · 29/07/2007 13:39

Thanks LMG, its good to know someone has done what I am considering!

Did you have a triple buggy? if so how did you find that to use??

Also why did you not do it for long, was it not managable or for other reasons??

Good idea about longer settling in period!!

OP posts:

LoveMyGirls · 29/07/2007 13:45

Oh about the triple buggy i would use it if out in the park but it wont fit in doorways easily, i used to use my double for the two youngest then either my dd2 who was the eldest would walk (bit wobbly) or i would carry her if i was only going from carpark to toddlers.

The schoolies will probably help out with entertaining the younger ones just bear in mind that if they havent got younger siblings themselves or havent mixed with babies for a while then they will probably need reminding how to behave around them, like not leaving drinks where babies can get them or toys with small parts etc.

I learnt this when i had my first schoolie, she was the same age as my dd1 so i (wrongly)expected her to understand about not giving things to the younger ones, one day i had a lady coming to visit me with a baby so i put cake decorating stuff on the table for the older ones and a biscuit for my dd2 (who was about 20mths) so i got them all sat at the table and went to answer the door when i came back the schoolie had let dd2 have the bowl of icing and her fruit juice so i had to spend a while cleaning that up with this new lady waiting to speak to me - Whoops! (my own fault of course!!)


LoveMyGirls · 29/07/2007 13:48

I found it easier that having a 10mth old a 15mth old and a 3yr old tbh because they were all doing similar things, it was harder to entertain the 3yr old with painting etc when i had 2 babies as well iyswim?

The reason it ended (after 7 wks) was money reasons with both of the babies which was gutting all round because it was working out so well plus now i have a triple buggy that cost £200 sitting in my shed!! I'm sure it will ocme in handy again though, although now my youngest is capable of walking I may not use it until she's at school and i get another young 3 under 5!!


becksmummy · 29/07/2007 13:54

Thats great thanks for your advice, I was mainly thinking of the triple buggy for school run as wouldnt be able to fit them all in my car.

My dd can walk but still wobbly so wouldnt be able to walk a long distance but that will obviously get better over the next few months anyway.

Think from your comments I will give it a go, fingers crossed she wants to sign up tomorrow now!!

OP posts:

LoveMyGirls · 29/07/2007 13:59

Good luck, if you search under my name sometime in january i'm sure i probably did a thread about this then. I'll try and have a look.

Let us know how you get on and come and meet us in the staff room (though im away for a week but i'll see you in there when i get back)


JennaJ · 29/07/2007 14:11

I used to have 3 under 18mnths full time. I had a 4m a 14m and a 16m...was SO much easier than having 3 of mixed ages as you did the same things with all of them. I had a double buggy with a litaf seat to go on the back and the 14m and 16m took it in turns to ride on the back..or I had the younger one in a sling. Was totally fine. They all napped around the same time which was lovely too.

I would go for it :-)



becksmummy · 29/07/2007 14:19

Thanks Jenna, what is a litaf seat? not heard of that but that could always be an option for my dd as she will be the eldest of the 3!

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star1976 · 29/07/2007 15:48

Hi, I have three every day, ages 16 months, 17 months (my DS) and 19 months. 19 months mindee started with me when she was 11 months (got a variation from Ofsted as DS was only 9 months) then 16 months mindee started 4 months ago. Been a busy three months but going well (I think!!).

Don't have any real problems apart from going out, I use my car most of the time, unless we are going really close. I only have a double pram as where I live it is very hilly and the double is hard enough to push, a triple would make my back give up altogether!!

Luckily 19 month mindee loves to walk, every thing just takes 100 times longer!


tigersmum · 29/07/2007 17:24

I too have 3 under 18months most days and find it great. As for the triple buggy thing I have a triple that converts to a double and back again so you can have 2 or 3 at the same time, very handy when one does not turn up.Its an umbrella fold so fits in the car as a double and carry the other bit on the top of it.Easy.


NAB3 · 29/07/2007 17:26

My gut feeling is not to take on too much even though you have been quiet with enquiries. Maybe you need to have a trial period to see how you get one?


CarGirl · 29/07/2007 17:58

My CM has had two different triple tandems one was the peg perego one (mamas & papas but not sold over here) and she sold that and upgraded to another one that was imported you can take of the 3rd seat make it shorter and use it as a tandem, she said it is really easy to push and the seats are a good size. The other alternative is a double 3 wheeler with the toddler seat - one has one that sits on the handle bar bit the other it sits above the from wheel.

Go for it - yes at least you should get them all to nap for some of time!


Shoshable · 29/07/2007 18:25

I had 3 under 18months before and in January, will have 3 under 22months, ages 22 months, 12 months and 7 months, the 22two month who i already have at 18 months dosnt walk so is not likely to be walking strongly by Januart, I have a Marco Sky, with a seat2go, its fine for waht I want, going in to school, and short pushchair journeys, do admit have to drive most places so the Marco Sky and seat arrangement fits in the car well.

And as others have said, 3 the same age is so much easier, I had two 16 month and a 12 month. The youngest goes to school this year, the eldest went last year and the other one left last year, I have babies this year and the 4 year old has found it difficult without her own age group.


becksmummy · 29/07/2007 19:55

Thanks everyone for your help it is very much appreciated!!

From the majority of you who have minded 3 little ones you seem to think it works quite well as all at a similar stage which makes life easier to amuse them and hopefully eventually they may nap at similar times.

My only thought now is if to go for a triple buggy or a seat to fit on the double buggy I already have?

My dd would be the oldest of the 3 and she is walking well but wouldnt manage to school and back, are the seats that you attach to the buggy suitable for a 15 mth old (she will be by time I have both other mindees) or will she be a bit too young still?? (dont want her falling off!!!!!)

OP posts:

becksmummy · 29/07/2007 20:00

I havent seen the double that converts to a triple where did you get that one from? could be another option?

OP posts:

NannyL · 29/07/2007 21:17

I remember seeing a mothercare urban detour double buggy that some clever person had managed to attach an extra seat to turn it into a triple buggy.

there is also a double (3 wheel) buggy with a seat on the top... saw one in the park the other day with a mum who had a 12 month old then baby twins


tigersmum · 30/07/2007 09:12

I got my convertable off ebay from an e bay shop so was brand new. It came from LOTS OF BABIES which are based in Manchester.


JennaJ · 30/07/2007 12:18


A litaf seat to go is a buggyboard with a seat on little one can sit down when they are tired. Sticks out a bit more than a standard buggy, but fine on a maclaren twin etc as you can walk either side.

Twin/ tripple buggys:

You can get an easylife twin and a toddler seat that attatches to the front. These are expensive though!! But great as are super to push and no wider than a double buggy.

A childminder friend of mine has a combi caterpillar (tandem) and a silver cross pram seat. Which fits on the cross bar perfectly even though it wasn't made to be like that! This is about £200 so cheaper than most triples. Only restriction is that the baby in the back must be laid almost flat.

You can get an abc adventurer which is from nz but there is a UK supplier now I think. Its a twin mountain buggy with a seat that goes up on top over the hood. They are so funky, but quite expensive.

You can get the doubles with an extra seat to make it into a triple.

You can also get a standard tandem buggy (graco lxi or something) and fit a buggypod onto the side of it...this works ok but you have to make sure you get the 2 lightest next to each other or it is unbalanced!

Hope that helps

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