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WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...

 
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amother









  
Post Posted: Wed, Feb 10 2010, 1:03 pm       Post subject: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
I work from home with no babysitter, and my job hours are extremely flexible. Right now, I mostly work while my toddler naps (twice daily, bli ayin hara) and after he goes to sleep for the night. Although I will work sometimes while he's up, it's usually after dh is home and playing with him. Every once in a while I try to work while he's up, but usually not for more than five or ten minutes at a time.

I'm pregnant now, about six months along, and I'm getting nervous about trying to juggle both of them while working. When ds was a newborn, I got MORE work done because he slept so much, and because I could work while he was nursing. With this second one, I feel like I'll have a LOT less time to work. Yes, I know I could send ds to a daycare, but right now money is tight, and I don't know what his nap schedule will be like then, and I don't want to plan for it ahead of time in case it's not necessary...but I know that daycares fill up quickly.

So here's my question. This morning, I tried working while he was up for a certain amount of time and letting him play next to me. He was constantly hanging onto me trying to get me to play. Sometimes he can entertain himself for five or ten minutes on his own, but not when he sees me on the computer! (Yes, I have to do this work on the computer.) Do you think it's worth trying to "train" him to let me work for, say, ten minutes at a time and then play with him for a few minutes? Obviously I wouldn't do that all day - even now, I only work about 4 hours a day or so - but if I could get in some more work time that way it would be very helpful.

Has anyone ever tried this? Any advice or ideas? I'd start with two or three minutes and then build it up, I think...
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malkie









  
Post Posted: Wed, Feb 10 2010, 1:17 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
I am in the same situation. My DS is currently 23 months and I am due with my 2nd IY"H in less than 2 months. DS will be 2.6 in September, so I've enrolled him in playgroup from 9-2. He currently naps for about 2 hours (11-1), but I will have to change that over to a 2:30pm nap, or no nap, to accommodate playgroup. I can't imagine getting work done with him and a baby around!
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amother









  
Post Posted: Wed, Feb 10 2010, 5:29 pm       Post subject: Re: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
malkie wrote:
I am in the same situation. My DS is currently 23 months and I am due with my 2nd IY"H in less than 2 months. DS will be 2.6 in September, so I've enrolled him in playgroup from 9-2. He currently naps for about 2 hours (11-1), but I will have to change that over to a 2:30pm nap, or no nap, to accommodate playgroup. I can't imagine getting work done with him and a baby around!


OP - Malkie, do you currently only work while your ds is sleeping?

I can't imagine it either, but I think that's what's going to happen. My ds is younger, only about 19 months now. We'll see...
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chocolate moose









  
Post Posted: Wed, Feb 10 2010, 8:17 pm       Post subject: Re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
amother wrote:
I work from home with no babysitter, and my job hours are extremely flexible. Right now, I mostly work while my toddler naps (twice daily, bli ayin hara) and after he goes to sleep for the night. Although I will work sometimes while he's up, it's usually after dh is home and playing with him. Every once in a while I try to work while he's up, but usually not for more than five or ten minutes at a time.

I'm pregnant now, about six months along, and I'm getting nervous about trying to juggle both of them while working. When ds was a newborn, I got MORE work done because he slept so much, and because I could work while he was nursing. With this second one, I feel like I'll have a LOT less time to work. Yes, I know I could send ds to a daycare, but right now money is tight, and I don't know what his nap schedule will be like then, and I don't want to plan for it ahead of time in case it's not necessary...but I know that daycares fill up quickly.

So here's my question. This morning, I tried working while he was up for a certain amount of time and letting him play next to me. He was constantly hanging onto me trying to get me to play. Sometimes he can entertain himself for five or ten minutes on his own, but not when he sees me on the computer! (Yes, I have to do this work on the computer.) Do you think it's worth trying to "train" him to let me work for, say, ten minutes at a time and then play with him for a few minutes? Obviously I wouldn't do that all day - even now, I only work about 4 hours a day or so - but if I could get in some more work time that way it would be very helpful.

Has anyone ever tried this? Any advice or ideas? I'd start with two or three minutes and then build it up, I think...


I think the child will resent the work. He's also going to resent the other child and then the new baby that will occupy your time.

You should be happy you saved on child care thus far.
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malkie









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 10:49 am       Post subject: Re: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
amother wrote:
malkie wrote:
I am in the same situation. My DS is currently 23 months and I am due with my 2nd IY"H in less than 2 months. DS will be 2.6 in September, so I've enrolled him in playgroup from 9-2. He currently naps for about 2 hours (11-1), but I will have to change that over to a 2:30pm nap, or no nap, to accommodate playgroup. I can't imagine getting work done with him and a baby around!


OP - Malkie, do you currently only work while your ds is sleeping?

I can't imagine it either, but I think that's what's going to happen. My ds is younger, only about 19 months now. We'll see...


I currently only work when my DS is sleeping, except for a short phone call or checking my emails on my phone.
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chocolate moose









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 12:57 pm       Post subject:
So, how much money could you make already? It'd pay to h ave childcare.
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amother









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 1:24 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
Right now, if ds takes two 1.5 hour naps, and then I work for 1.5 hours after he goes to sleep at night, that's 4.5 hours.

Sure, I could send him to daycare for a few hours every morning. But if that time is when the newborn is up for a good percentage and needs me anyway, I'd be paying for someone to watch him when I could do it myself. Or if I have to make him skip a nap in order for daycare to take him, that would cut into my time as well. Of course, there's always the possibility that ds will stop taking two naps around then...but still.

Right now, I'm trying to avoid sending him to daycare for several reasons. If I need to, I'll work it out. I'm wondering if anyone who does WAH with a toddler around has any ideas about whether this would work, though. I know there are moms on here who have done this, and I'm hoping that one of them will respond with their experiences...
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amother









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 1:35 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
P.S. Do toddlers "resent" mothers making dinner? Doing laundry? Washing the floor? Mothers must sometimes do these things when toddlers are up as well. If it's necessary, lots of things can get done when a toddler is up. I want to know whether working on the computer is one of those things, or whether it's just a recipe for disaster. I'd really like to hear from someone's who's tried it.
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athomemom









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 1:43 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
I have a 19 month old and work from home. (Its NOT easy.) I try to sit with him on the floor, while he plays- I work on the laptop. that way he feels I'm right there..............
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amother









  
Post Posted: Thu, Feb 11 2010, 1:55 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
Athomemom - Doesn't he try to press the buttons on your laptop? Or throw books and toys on you to get you to play? Wink
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TwinsMommy









  
Post Posted: Fri, Feb 12 2010, 10:19 am       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
I'm a work at home mom with twin 3 year olds. When they were babies I got a lot of work done while they played--- between phone calls I'd give them some attention and then they'd be content to bat at their gymini or swing in their swing for a while while I worked more..... but it got harder and harder as they got older and older and by toddler time, FORGET IT--- I only worked during naptime and after bedtime. Luckily I'm self employed and set my own hours and NOW they're in preschool 12 hours a week PLUS I get naptime and after bedtime.

I don't initiate work while they're home and awake but if someone calls me for what I think might be a quick question or order I take the call and oftentimes I really regret it. I had a consultant call me a couple days ago while one twin was singing VERY loudly on one side of me and the other twin was just starting a mega meltdown. MANY MANY times I let voice mail get it and I return the call during naptime or preschool time or after bedtime.

When they're home and awake, I'm the cruise director in charge of playdoh, crayons and markers and stickers, bringing out toys we haven't played with in a while..... I'm the librarian doing story time 8 million times a day. That's my life and I wouldn't change a moment. Smile They're at preschool now which is why I'm able to make this post. Smile
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shalhevet









  
Post Posted: Fri, Feb 12 2010, 10:25 am       Post subject:
OP, you are forgetting another factor. By 3 months time your toddler probably won't nap 2x a day any more either.

To the poster who said mothers do laundry etc, it's not the same - you can interact with your toddler while doing housework, not while concentrating on work on a computer.

I would send to playgroup in the mornings and make that your worktime.
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GetReal









  
Post Posted: Fri, Feb 12 2010, 10:36 am       Post subject:
I could have written your post a year and a half ago. But I quickly learned that it was not doable, for me at least. My kids can handle cooking, laundry, etc, they join in and I talk to them while I do it. They know that when I go near the computer, they have lost my attention. They would pull on me, call me, try to turn off the computer, etc. And naps were hard because inevitably, as soon as the older one was napping, the baby would need attention. After trying to work like this for awhile, I got really frustrated and felt like it was not healthy for me or the kids. DH took the kids f for an hour a day to the park (it was nice weather then) and I did the rest of the work at night or if by some miracle, ds2 let me work while ds2 napped. But they got older, ds2 was a toddler also, and I realized I needed childcare. My kids and I are much happier - I get my work done and they have Mommy's complete attention, I'm not always thinking about when and how I will work.

Good luck!
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momtomany









  
Post Posted: Mon, Feb 22 2010, 10:51 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
if you have infinite patience and can handle being interrupted often (your work isnt the type that you really need to focus and cant stop in the middle) then I'd say to give it a try.
I've done it.
When my toddler needed me I'd sit her on the desk in front of the computer screen and she'd play or color or watch me and I'd peer at the screen around her while making interested sounds to whatever she was saying.
when I had two screens availbale I'd sit her on my lap watching a video or youtube uncle moishy's or babies laughing on one screen while I worked on the other, and she'd be happy while I got work done. if I had only one screen I'd make the windows really skinny and tall so we each could see what we wanted.
if she wanted to press buttons I'd tell her which ones to push when I needed to type.
I'd set up toys on the floor near me and she'd play for a bit, and when I really needed to focus, I'd start a video in another room.

all this was also when I'd be nursing a newborn, or the baby would be sleeping.
now all my kids have grown a bit so they are all in school so its easier to get work done. I dont think I could go back to doing what I did. looking back I dont know how I managed. but I did. I really did it. I did it for years.

it takes patience and your work will take longer than if you'd do it uninterrupted, but it was possible for me.
though by the end of the day my patience would be running low, so be prepared with ways to recoup your patience for the next day. (time for yourself etc.)
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mimivan









  
Post Posted: Mon, Feb 22 2010, 11:01 pm       Post subject: re: WAH with a toddler, and soon a newborn too...
I'm an editor, I need to be able to concentrate, and yet b'h I've been able to work with my almost 2 year old at home. But I've so far not been able to juggle working with two running around (actually when my 6 year old comes home in the afternoons, it is manageable to do some minimal work because he can entertain them, but not much...this isn't relevant to your situation OP, but may be okay for future reference..iy'h Wink )

the ONLY way I think you could do this if you are still insistent on not getting childcare (I'm with Shalhevet and Chocolate Moose, but I too can't afford it in my area for my baby) is to get up early in the morning or work late at night? How many hours a day do you have to work? You might be able to swing it if you work just 4-6 hours a day, then you can go to sleep with the kids 7:30 or 8ish and wake up at 3 or 4 (nursing the baby when he/she needs, as you mentioned, while working) take care of the toddler if he wakes up at 7 and do some more work when the toddler takes his morning nap (so we so far have about 3-4 hours in the wee hours plust a couple of hours during the nap)..

this is the way I did it for awhile until my company wanted me to work evening hours too (or you could make it in the evening)...

but for a full 8 hours or more a day, you would have to get childcare

and keeping odd hours long term can take it's toll..
I do hope you have maternity leave?
b'shaa tova
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Say, Think or Do One Thing Now to Bring Moshiach!
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