This is when a spouse or partner might come in handy. I'm feeling some sense of urgency now that I only have a month (a MONTH!) left before the marathon that is a new school year begins again. I need to make The Decision about where K will be every day while I'm back at work. For the most part it's turning out to be a choice between the home daycare scenario where K was last year, and the preschool-type place that is basically across the street from my school. I've actually written out the pros and cons on paper to try and figure out where I stand...it's still a tough call, no two ways about it. And who is the person who has to make this choice? Yeah, me. Only me. [another heavy sigh]
The main pros of Miss Jackie's are that it's a cozy, homey environment that K looooves, it's my comfort zone, I do like the moms who bring their kids there, it's VERY affordable (the main pro), and it's just more (for lack of a better word) intimate.
The cons include the fact that it's less academic than an actual preschool would be, last I heard, Miss Jackie wants to take on a young infant who is the sib of one of the girls who goes there, which I'm not sure is the best decision, I kind of get the feeling Miss Jackie is starting to burn out (she's been doing this daycare gig for a long time now), too much TV is watched there, and last year Miss Jackie didn't often include K (who was the youngest) in much of the pencil-and-paper, fine motor skills stuff the other kids were doing.
The pros of the Creative Play Center include the fact that it's much more academic, it offers a wide range of activities, themes, and field trips, the hours are better (it's open later than Miss Jackie's), the food is a little better, there are more opportunities for K to make friends, there are more teachers there, and they even offer ten vacation days per year for which I don't have to pay (this doesn't include the summer). Great playground, too.
The cons of Creative Play are the COST (it's almost $200 more per month), it's a bigger environment (we visited last week, and K was more than a little shy and shellshocked), and I would be only one of many, many parents there--would I end up feeling like just another number? If I have concerns, would I be heard? Who knows. I know that K would get used to it, but I do feel some guilt about possibly taking her away from a place she loves. But that doesn't mean she wouldn't grow to love this preschool, either.
There are still a few places I want to check out, but after writing this out, I think the best choice is probably the preschool, and I would just have to suck it up and pay the higher amount. The flip side of it, though (I really hate flip sides!) is that she has this year and next year before she heads off to kindergarten, so theoretically I could keep her at Miss Jackie's for another year and then send her off to preschool the following year, the year before she starts kindergarten. I feel like I have to decide soon, not only to hold her spot wherever we pick, but also to get things settled in my brain.
In other news, I got the results of the blood tests from my RE, and if I choose to do it, all systems are go for another iui. My hormone levels are all good, but that doesn't say anything about egg quality. My RE asked me to give the clinic a call after my next cycle starts (in a couple of weeks) and we'll go from there. He's talking about injectibles, and also DHEA, which apparently is one of the newest protocols for aging women like myself, haha! The question is, am I up for it? Should I just give up the dream already? I know that deep in my heart, I do have one more try in me, even at the ripe old age of 43. (Halle Berry, anyone?) If my RE is up for it, which he is, maybe I am too. I have noticed lately, though, that more and more I've been envisioning a life with just me and K, and it's starting to look kinda...great. That might well become our reality, for better or for worse.
**EDITED to add:
This afternoon (Thursday) we're off to check out another preschool, which *might* be the best of both possible worlds: affordable AND with the advantages of an established preschool program. It's also close to my school and my aunt's and uncle's house (in case they need to pick up K at any point). The curiosity is killing me!