I think my caregiver and I have come to an agreement on care for the next year. I'll be sending Carson to daycare 5 days every 2 weeks. It's completely ideal for both Carson and myself. First and foremost, Carson loves daycare. He talks about his friends there all the time. It's like an 8 hour playdate. He loves his caregiver. She loves him. They do amazing crafts, singalongs, circle time, learning their numbers and letters and getting lots of outdoor time. I don't want him to give up his social time, and I know that being at home with a newborn I just wouldn't have the time to arrange constant playdates. Also, I remember between about 4 months and a year old, Carson was having a 2 hour nap in the morning and a 2 hour nap in the afternoon. What to do with a toddler during that time? A few days a week, absolutely I will have things for us to do, but he'd probably rather be with his friends having way more fun. He'll be starting school (what, school??) when my maternity leave is done and I don't want to make sure he's completely prepared. And I think half of the time with his mom and half of the time at daycare is the best way to ensure he's ready. He'll be just little when he starts - only 3!
Also, it will give me time to dedicate to my new little boy. I remember the hours Carson and I would spend walking around in the stroller, just lying on our bed together, watching him sleep, spending my whole day trying to do whatever I could do to keep him smiling. I want those same times with just me and my new baby. Also, for the first month I remember I was just constantly feeding, changing, trying to sleep, cooking, cleaning etc.... where to fit entertaining your first born in there?
I KNOW that lots of moms do it and I KNOW that it's possible - but I think that our plan is just perfect for our family. I'll have lots of time with both my boys and then time with just my second-born knowing that Carson is happy!