We found a daycare, so I guess I eventually have to go back to work

8 May
Sunny Vancouver Days

Sunny Vancouver Days

Back to work on August 4th, its official… Time does fly when you are having fun. On hindsight one of the best things that could have happened to us was having a baby in Canada because as long as you pay your taxes for 6 months you get to have 12 months of maternity leave. You get to walk right back into your job and if you so wish, you work another 6 months and go back on maternity leave, your boss may not see the humor in this but it can legally be done.

Waiting lists in Vancouver are notoriously long and quite often you can only get into part-time daycare, one or two days a week, and then work your way up to the privilege of full-time daycare. Since they are so hard to get into, people were starting to get on waiting lists whilst they were still pregnant or even just trying! Now in most places you have to register with a copy of the birth certificate but you can still find yourself without a confirmed spot at the end of your maternity leave.

We have been lucky and have found a small registered daycare called Giving Tree that is just a 10 minute walk from the apartment. Natasa (I know right, its meant to be) is a lovely Eastern European lady who made us some lovely chai tea when we went it in to meet her. I guess you could also call her a ‘day mother’ as she runs the daycare out of her home. Karl and I instantly warmed to her and felt like we would be leaving Malaika at home with her nana (that’s kiwi-speak for grandma, Gogo , Ambuya or Oma for those who don’t know). She provides organic meals, bakes them fresh bread daily and she is vegetarian, a trait Malaika seems to be taking on since she refuses to eat meat in the last few weeks. I am told that this is a lifesaver because once you have to give them lunch and snacks you appreciate not having had to.

She is also very much into her yoga, which she teaches in the evening and subsequently has a very strict 5:00pm pick up time. She only looks after two children. There is a little boy about Malaika’s age who will start in May and then Malaika will join them in September, this gives Natasa time to get used to the first baby before introducing a new one, what a good way to do it don’t you think? The kids will be taught yoga too, Malaika will be in heaven given her current flexibility and love of her feet. I have caught her at least twice the last few days actually using her feet to pick things up and bring them closer to her hands. Lazy or ingenious … you decide.

The price you pay for such convenience and peace of mind you might wonder…. $1350 a month! That’s pretty standard in downtown Vancouver from what I gather. In a 20 day month that really only works out to $67.50 a day, it’s not going to buy you a Merc, sure its steep for us but she has to live in the same neighbourhood that we live too. Here are the pros: she’s 10 minutes walk from home, 25 minutes walk from my work and less than 5 minutes on the train from home or work, she gives her meals, she is registered and we all liked her. So we paid our deposit, we will go through the one month trial come September and hope that it all works out.


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