Early Decisions on Child Care

I will be the first one to admit I dropped the ball in this area.  I mean you don't even have the baby to take care of yet, thinking about who is going to take care of them when you go back to work seems ridiculous!  Well in most medium to large Canadian cities child care wait lists are 12-18 months long.  And for some amazing facilities they can be even longer!

Okay this information is not supposed to scare you.  Just make an action plan using the following steps:

  1. Decide on the type of care you want.  Examples include daycare, day home, nanny, relative, etc.  See below for some of the pros and cons.

  2. Google Map the type of child care you've decided on, and then mark down locations surrounding your home and office.  Honestly getting a child out the door is a lot of work, so don't add to your commute.  Pick locations within a 5 minute drive of your home of office, or ones that are on your way to work.

  3. Check out their websites, and call to set up appointments to tour.  Then if you are happy with what you see GET ON THE WAIT LIST!  And get on more than one list!  I got put in a bad situation because I only went on one wait list, who guaranteed me a spot...  Then when I called six months before going back to work, they informed me I was bumped due to siblings coming in requiring a spot...

  4. Lastly don't stress, you will know when touring facilitieswhich option feels right for you, so don't over think it :)


Daycares are regulated facilities, with directors and specific child to adult/teacher ratios.  But just because they are regulated that does not make all daycare equal!  Make sure you find one that you are comfortable with the staff, menu, activities, and cleanliness.


  • Regulated & monitored

  • Social aspect for children

  • Set programs for activities and menu

  • Moderate price point

  • Multiple care givers per room

  • Relatively clean

  • Daily report on child behavor


  • Relatively long wait list

  • Germ exposure: children are sick more often, and you need to stay home with them

  • Rotational staff

  • Set schedule, which generally can't accomodate to flexible nap times

Photo source: https://www.flickr.com/

Day Home

Day homes are literally child care set up within someone's home.  Often the care giver also has their own children also staying at the day home.  They vary with some regulated and others not.  Personally if you are considering a day home I would only recommend a regulated one to ensure proper baby proofing and food requirements.


  • Social aspect for children

  • Lowest price point

  • Flexible day routine, with a separate nap room

  • Non rotational care giver

  • Relatively short wait list


  • Varrying level of regulation

  • Germ exposure: children are sick more often, and you need to stay home with them

  • One care giver, and higher ratio of children to adult


Nannies are great in regards to the fact that they come to your house, and if you schedule a transition time it's little impact on your child.  Generally people hire nannies 1-2 months before returning to work, so uncertainty in finding the right nanny can be stressful.  However, if you don't get into other child care arrangements, this can also be a good short term solution.  I've heard of multiple people having success with Canadian Nannies to set up interviews and ultimately find a fit for their family.


  • One-on-one consistent care for you child

  • Comfort of your own home, and no added commute

  • Help with house work and meal prep

  • Potential for evening and weekend care