I don't think I could have gotten away with it more than once.
Luckily, I found a daycare on Wednesday. It's a licensed home daycare about 10 minutes away from school. I think that I called 15 different daycares that day, and visited a few. This was the only one I felt confident about from the start. The moment I walked into this woman's home, I felt 100% comfortable. What's more, she's very relaxed and has part-time rate that we can easily afford.
(Bailey, our dog, has discovered himself in the mirror and is now growling at his own reflection.)
Meng and I have been squirreling away money here and there for the day that Emma needed something that we couldn't pay for. To be quite honest, I had forgotten about it until last week. So that's how we're going to pay for childcare until I finish school.
Since I only found the daycare on Wednesday, (I skipped class that day) I didn't feel comfortable sending Emma to the daycare on her own on Thursday. Yesterday Emma and I spent an hour at the daycare before we went to class. Selena, our caregiver, let us hang out so that Emma could get used to the environment. Everyone was happy.
Since Thursday went so well, and since I had class bright and early this morning, I took Emma to daycare about 45 minutes before my class started. I hung out for a half hour. When Emma was comfortably settled into an Emma-sized chair with a giant green crayon and a piece of bright yellow construction paper, I snuck out the front door. It was a lot more difficult than I anticipated. (My spell-check is telling me that "snuck" isn't a word. Any thoughts?)
I picked her up a few hours later, and received a good report. Emma colored for a while, and then had popcorn while they watched part of UP. She was playing with a friend in the infant area (nick-named "baby jail" by the toddlers because of the plastic wall) when I arrived.
(Bailey has given up on his reflection and is now curled up in a nest of clean clothes I piled on a blanket last night. Apparently, I put it there with him in mind.)
I really like this place. I feel really fortunate, especially with all of the energy I've spent fretting over it the last two or three weeks. Emma is a little uncomfortable when we first get there, but it will be good for her to learn some independence, which this place will definitely give. The average child to adult ratio is 3 to 1, which means that Emma cannot be picked up and held all the time. This will hopefully solve some of the problems we've been having lately, which I will have to detail in another post.
And now, to get that dog off my laundry!