Thursday, November 19, 2015

The story of Gibi and Haha (oh, and childcare too)

Today I thought I'd share a little bit about Gibi and Haha - common players in the dramatics of our daily lives and often talked about here on the blog :)  I get asked often about their grandparent names as well as about how we settled on our current childcare situation so I thought I'd kill two birds with one stone since they're both grandparent related and address both questions today.

My parents, Ian and Joyce, picked out the grandparent names Gibi and Grandpa in 2007 when I found out I was pregnant.  



My mom wanted something unique and "un-grandma" and so she settled on Gibi (like G.B.) to stand for Grandma Buchanan.  My dad channeled his inner old man and picked out Grandpa :)  We tried to encourage him to pick Chief (this was the name that everyone called him when we used to go on mission trips to Mexico), but he wanted Grandpa, so Grandpa it was.



I went back through my blog and in the summer of 2010 Luke stopped calling my dad Grandpa and started calling him Haha.  I have NO CLUE where it came from, but he started saying that his grandpa's name was Haha and so we ran with it :)

Now for a little history, when I was in High School my mom took a job as an administrative assistant at a super small, private Christian school named McKinney Christian Academy.  The school was located in an old bank building and she officed out of what was once the vault.

She continued to work at MCA as they grew and in 2006 when I started there as a teacher, she was the assistant to the Upper School Principal.  She and I worked together during my first and second years of teaching.  During my second year I found out I was pregnant and Dave and I started to talk about childcare and the possibility of me staying at home and all of those big decisions.  We had decided that I would stay home, but I was torn because I absolutely loved my job and felt like I was doing exactly what I was being called to do.  It was then that my mom told us that she wanted to quit her job and watch Luke for us full time.  I was SHOCKED!  My mom LOVED her job at MCA, but she was so excited about the opportunity to spend this precious time with her first grandchild and she really felt like I had just started my teaching career and she wanted me to be able to continue.


My mom watched Luke during his first year and we had a great system.  We lived about 10 minutes away from them and I would leave for school and then about an hour or so later Dave would pack Luke up and drop him off at my parent's house on his way to the country club.  I picked him up after school and headed back across town.   In the spring of 2009 we decided we wanted to move closer to my parents and began our VERY specific search... we wanted to live within eyesight of my parents house :)


If you had told my "high school self" that I would one day be searching for a house within toddler walking distance of my parents I would have laughed in your face :)  But we were so excited!!!


We found the perfect house for us (about 10 houses down the street from my parents) and immediately made an offer.  Our current house sold within a week of being on the market (which was CRAZY fast at the time) and after a TON of delays with our buyer's closing and a super stressful actual move, we were in our new house on Luke's first birthday.


My mom continued to watch Luke during the 2009/2010 school year and the added convenience of living so close was amazing.  She would split her time between her house and mine and I would often come home to clean laundry and vacuumed carpets.  AMEN!!!  Living close by was awesome for lots of reasons, but one of which is picking up a grandparent or two on our nightly walks around the neighborhood :)



In the Fall of 2010 we found out I was pregnant with Mason and my mom told us that she wanted to go back to work.  She and Luke had THE BEST time together, but at that point he was so independent and they went out and about, did all kinds of outings together and such and throwing a newborn into the mix wasn't something she was up for.



It was a difficult pill to swallow because we LOVED having my mom watch Luke.  I mean, it was the absolute PERFECT scenario.  We started the search for daycare for TWO KIDS (holy tuition, batman!) and started narrowing down our choices. We started with traditional daycare settings as well as Montessori academies and after visiting several were left feeling like that wasn't going to be the best place for our kids.  



I know that some people love the structure and amenities (like being able to see your kids from your computer at work), but they weren't for us.  Next we looked into hiring a nanny.  We interviewed a couple and felt okay about going that route, but didn't want to make a decision before checking out several in-home daycare options we'd received via recommendations.



I visited half a dozen or so in-home daycare options and liked them okay, but AS SOON as I walked into Miss Lisa's house I knew that it was where I wanted my boys to be.  She was warm and welcoming and open about her policies and procedures.  Things that I immediately liked about her were that she did pre-school curriculum, but nothing super rigorous.  She told me that I could drop in unannounced ANY time I wanted to and she was a big believer in routine.  I liked that I didn't have to pack a lunch for the boys every day, that I could drop off a big box of diapers and container of formula and bottles and she kept up with the supplies so there was minimal for Dave to worry about packing every morning (since he would be the one bringing them). She watched a mix of full and part time kids, but never more than 6 at a time and never more than 2 babies.



It's hard to explain - but I just knew that Miss Lisa's house was the right pick.  Dave was a lot more analytical about the whole thing (lists, spreadsheets, etc.), but in the end we went with my gut (aka "mother's intuition").  



The boys went to Miss Lisa's house together for the 11/12 school year and then it was just Mason in 12/13 when Luke started PreK.  Griffin started going to Miss Lisa's house in July of 2013 (she was 3 months old) and I can honestly say that during our 4+ years with Lisa I have never once worried about my kids.  I know that they're safe, being well taken care of and having a blast with their friends.  Lisa will text me pictures when they're doing fun things and none of my three ever protested about going to her house.




I know it sounds cliche, but I think finding a place that you "feel" is a good fit is super important.  Leaving your babies is hard, and finding someone who you're comfortable with makes all the difference.  Get recommendations from friends if possible, call their references and don't be shy about asking questions.


Lastly, since I'm sure some of you were wondering - budget wise, in-home daycare made the most sense for us as well.  Lisa watches mainly teachers kids and she takes summers off so we don't have to pay her year round.  Several traditional daycares we would have had to pay through the summer or risk losing our spot in the Fall.



So... there you have it!  If you have any other questions about our grandparent names or picking childcare PLEASE let me know!  

Happy Thursday, Friends!!!



26 comments:

  1. That was lovely to read! How beautiful that your mum looked after Luke as a baby. Such a special bonding time for the two of them. And how lovely that she felt that she could say that she wanted to return to work. You are doing such a lovely job raising these gorgeous children x

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  2. The photo of Luke (I'm guessing) running into your mom's arms made me cry. I have a 3 year old grandson, and I quit my job to keep him. I *loved* being with him almost every day. Three weeks ago, they moved to another city five hours away. My heart was broken. Thank the Lord for technology and FaceTime!

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  3. I could do a whole post myself on how much I love Gibi and Haha! Your parents are amazing. I have loved getting to know them over these last 10 years. And I loved living down the street from them too :). I also love how much your family loves Lisa. This post just made my heart happy :).

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  4. My dream is to watch my grandchildren one day, if asked and wanted! It'll be like being a SAHM all over again but better! ;)

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  5. What a sweet post about Gibi and Haha!!! You can tell they love your kids. And love them big! So glad you found the perfect house so close to them!

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  6. Such a blessing to have your parents watch your kids. When I was still teaching, my mom watching my son and now they have such a special bond! You just can't beat it!

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  7. So sweet!! Love your parents and their special bond with your kiddos!! :)

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  8. I just want to say that Luke was born a little man...the hair! So sweet! My boy (10 today!) was born with a lot, too, but not so shaped!

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  9. I would just also mention that many states have licensing for home daycares so that's a great thing to look into, as well. It's worth so much to find a childcare situation that works for your family! We're at a home daycare too and love it :)

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  10. In my head, I always pronounced Gibi as "Gibby" instead of "G.B." I'm glad you clarified that!

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  11. I am SO glad you pronounced Gibi for me, I have been saying it in my head wrong ( "hard" G) all this time!! And, I think Haha sounds like Grandpa to a toddler:) My oldest grandson started calling me "Mimi" and Mimi it is 8 grandchildren later;) I just love the relationship you have with your parents and your parents have with your kids. Relationships are everything!!;)

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  12. What a great post! We have a wonderful in-home sitter for my kids too and we love her like family! My son went from 3 months- 5 years and now my daughter is there! (6 months old)

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  13. Love that you love right down the street from parents. It's crazy how growing up we can't wait to get away and then once we become adults and parents we quickly realize there is no place like home ;). Loved this post

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  14. L O V E the history behind their names.

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  15. I agree! I knew when I found Linda (aka HeeHee) that was where I wanted my kids to be. They still remember her and speak of her often. Great choice Mama!

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  16. Love the story behind your parents names!! And to have you children in care that you feel completely comfortable with is priceless!!

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  17. What amazing parents you have! And you and your hubby are as well. :) So glad your set up works for your family! Thank you Lord for Miss Lisa! :)

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  18. Thank you for sharing this. I'm going back to work in about six weeks after having my first baby, and I'm stressing out about it a little. It helps to read about other working mothers.

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  19. I love this post! My mom has run an in-home daycare longer that I have been alive. She watched both my boys every day while I worked and was like a second mom to them!

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  20. I love that your son came up with his own name for his grandpa. When I was little I called my grandpa bunkie and still do :)

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  21. We're in the middle of determining grandparent names over here! And I always thought your mom's grandmother's name was pronounced 'Gibby" (as in rhyming with Libby)! So fun learning that it's not at all!

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