Aimee and I routinely take an evening walk downtown. Since we live in a small town it isn't unusual for someone to honk as they drive by. It is a bit unusual for us not to recognize the car. This exact event occurred the other day. A woman in a white Mercedes honked as she drove by. We racked our brains, and could think of nobody that we knew who might drive a Mercedes. The only new acquaintance we had made recently was the owner of the daycare we just moved our daughter into, but we dismissed the notion almost immediately.
Yesterday Aimee solved the mystery of the white Mercedes...when she was picking our daughter up from daycare. At the end of the long drive leading to the house, she encountered the same car...with the owner of the daycare behind the wheel. Taking out the garbage.
When Aimee called and told me of her discovery I started running the numbers in my head. Our monthly daycare bill is only $40 less than our house payment, including escrow for taxes and insurance. Granted, we have a small house. So our provider has 12 children at slightly less than a house payment each. She pays two assistants, and provides food and supplies for all the kids. She maintains their playground, lockers, toys, and buys craft supplies. She deals with the personalities and intricacies of twelve children, and twenty four parents.
After doing the math I came to the startling realization that she isn't charging us enough. She might drive a Mercedes but she isn't earning nearly enough money to cover the amount of work she does to care for the twelve children in her charge. When our next bimonthly
house daycare payment is due, I will pay it with a bounce in my step,.