How to Find the Best Childcare For Your Baby When Maternity Leave is Over

4 comments Amanda Bottleson

(with Amanda Bottleson, mama of 4, President & CEO of Youthland Academy) 

Have you ever read a Sherlock  Holmes mystery? Sherlock and his compadre Dr. Watson are probably some of the best known sleuths ever. They solve mysteries like it’s no one’s business.

So what does this have to do with going back to work after maternity leave is over? 


Amanda Bottleson, mom of 4 kiddos & President/CEO of the award winning Youthland Academy childcare centers explains that finding the best childcare for your baby takes solid detective skills, some sneaky sleuthing and investigative work that Sherlock & Dr. Watson would be proud of. 

Amanda teaches you the 3 things you can do today to find the best childcare for your bambino.

While it’s normal to feel unsure of going back to work and emotional about being a working mom, feeling confident and reassured about the care of your baby while you’re at work is possible and Amanda shows you how to get there.

Amanda  teaches us why details like: establishing a list of non-negotiables (what you & your spouse want the care center to do & not do), when to start researching your childcare options, how to tackle the interview process & what things should be immediate red flags when talking with or touring your childcare options- will soothe your fears and worries

Your Baby Booty How do I find the best childcareYou’ll Also Learn:

  1. The pros & cons for ‘the main’ types of childcare available.
  2. Why you should not make an appointment to tour a daycare.
  3. What things you should never, ever see at a childcare center (some surprising ones).
  4. Questions to ask the director & teachers while you’re interviewing. (we have a downloadable list for Premium Members)

Who is Amanda Bottleson?

Amanda Bottleson is the mama of 4 kiddos ranging in ages from 2 to 12 years old. She’s also the President & CEO of Youthland Academy, an award winning daycare and preschool for kiddos from 6 weeks to 12 years old which was founded by Amanda’s mom and continues to be family operated. Youthland Academy has 20 locations across Ohio, Kentucky and Florida. Youthland is extremely unique, not only because of their excellence in childcare, but their commitment to preparing home-made, organic, locally sourced meals for the kids. Amanda and her family live in Cincinnati, Ohio. She loves running, pilates and is obsessed with planning healthy meals for her family.  {The PDF mentioned is for Premium Members}

Watch the Interview (or download MP3)

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Amanda Bottleson- Choosing Childcare


Sarah Blight:                Hi. This is Sarah Blight with Your Baby Booty Interviews where we cut right through the fluff and get to the information that you really want to know and need to know in order to make the best decision for you and your family as you become a mom. Well, Child Care is a huge issue and something that is can be really intimidating for moms who are looking at going back to work after baby. Well, how do you choose the right child care for your baby and for you so that you feel confident and comfortable returning to work? Well, today we’re chatting with an expert, Amanda Bottleson. She’s the mom of four kids and she’s also the CEO and President of Youthland Academy and they are a daycare/child care preschool. They have babies from 6 weeks old all the way up to 12 years old and they’re on the cutting edge of child care in the US.

They serve organic food that’s freshly prepared no frozen chicken nuggets at Youthland Academy. And they also are preparing to open up a Special Education Child Care specifically to address the needs of Special Ed children and providing them healthy nutritious meals and a wonderful atmosphere with all of the extra health that they need, the kids need, occupational therapist and all the therapy involve for Special Ed kids. So they’re on the cutting edge of child care. We’re really, really lucky to have Amanda with us. Thank you so much for being here today.

Amanda Bottleson:     Thank you for having me, Sarah. I’m so excited to be here.

Sarah Blight:                So what is — you’re the mom of four kids and you’ve been in the Child Care industry for a long time. What is the one thing that you know now that you wish that you would have been blessed with that knowledge when you are starting out as a parent?

Amanda Bottleson:     Wow, that’s a great question. I think in terms of child care, in terms of finding your child care, I would spend a lot of time making a list out and making sure that you have your pros and your cons together as to what is going to work for your family. It’s a personal choice and there are so many things to consider and at the end of the day, it comes down to a job interview and that’s how I would treat it and I would definitely consider all of my options and research all of my options so that whatever you choose, you’re going to do so with confidence in your decision.

Sarah Blight:                That’s really huge. I’m sure that will help to eliminate a lot of the other anxieties and things

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                … that you would be feeling along the way as well which we’ll get to in a minute. What are the basic options that parents have for child care? What’s out there?

Amanda Bottleson:     That’s a great question too. Well, you have daycares. You have in-home care. An in-home care is classified as child care in somebody else’s house. Often they — they will take anywhere from two to seven children in their home or you could hire a nanny or a babysitter that you would bring in to your home. And then you always have family as an option if you’re fortunate enough to have that.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, so let’s talk for second about kind of the pros and the cons. Just generally speaking as you mentioned at the beginning –

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                … it’s important that you kind of find the right situation that’s right for your family but let’s just talk generally speaking about the basic general pros and cons of each. So let’s start with daycare. What are the pros and cons of daycare?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well, the pros are socialization that your child will get. Experts will say it’s never too young to start that process with your children. The children will get a very tight routine schedule everyday. So no matter how old your child is from 6 weeks to 5 years, everyday their schedule is consistent which is comforting for your child. They love the activities that they do at school. They get a sense of independence at school and they get a social network with their buddies. They have little buddies that they play with. I would find a con with daycare would obviously be your exposure to communicable diseases. There is a quite a bit of flu’s and lice and icky things that deal around daycares that you have to be aware of. There is fighting in certain classrooms. It’s just a normal behavior for 2 years old but unfortunately, children are expose to that and don’t be something that you might have to deal with at that age in the daycare setting.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. What about the in-home care specifically somebody else’s house?


Amanda Bottleson:     That is my least favorite option for child care and the reason that I say that is it’s not in a controlled environment. So you’re trusting somebody else to do what they say. Typically, they’re not regulated by a state agency like a daycare would be, by the health department like a daycare would be. They don’t subject their home to fire codes unlike a child care center would have. So just those elements of unknown when makes me a little bit weary but many people have wonderful experiences and I certainly wouldn’t want to take that away from somebody who does a great job. But again, it’s in an environment that is not regulated. You don’t know how they childproof their home and you don’t know if they’re smokers and you don’t know the environment that your child is in which I think is huge and it’s a huge part as a mom’s job to investigate that before they put their child anywhere. 

Sarah Blight:                So maybe it would take a little extra detective work to make sure.

Amanda Bottleson:     I think so. I would definitely pop in unexpected or unannounced if that was the route that you are going that you could kind of catch them off guard just to see what the day is.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. All right, in-home care, nanny, babysitter stuff, what are the pros of that?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well, the pro is your child is in your home so it’s set up the way that you want the environment to be. So that is obviously where you don’t have to pack up and move over to daycare. You’re minimizing the risk of illness and communicable disease in your home. Again, you’re controlling your environment so that’s always a good option if you trust the person that you are bringing in to your home.

Sarah Blight:                Okay and we’re going to get in to that in a second as far as, you know, what questions to ask and things like that.

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                How early should parents start researching their options? You know there’s a lot of women who might be watching who are saying, “Yup, I’m definitely 100% sure I’m going back to work.” Others may say, “I don’t really know yet.” They’re still pregnant, you know. You’re not really sure how sometimes out it’s going pan out or how you’re going to feel or, you know, what your financial situations going to be when you give birth. So how early should parents really start researching kind of their options for child care?

Amanda Bottleson:     I recommend researching that the minute you find out you’re pregnant. That is going to be — your life is going to change in so many way to confidently be able to go through this process and come out knowing what your — knowing what you’re going to need financially to spend and have everything prepared, be a lot less of a burden after the baby comes and a little — you’re going to be very emotional when the baby comes. So it’s a really good time to do it while you’re thinking clearly and trying to put a plan together for after birth.

Sarah Blight:                I think for a lot of women especially when you’re pregnant with your first child, it’s really daunting thinking about the child care because you’re not even sure really what it means to be a parent yet

Amanda Bottleson:     Right.

Sarah Blight:                You know, and its whole beautiful glory. [Laughter] And we’re going to talk about questions to ask and things like that in a moment but for parents who — I remember when Jackson was in utero and we were looking at child care options and I was thinking I don’t even know the gender of our baby yet and there’s a wait list already for certain, you know, child centers. How do parents kind of navigate through that if they’re just kind of unsure and yet there’s kind of like this a wait list or something like that for some of the more seemingly desirable child cares or daycares?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well, you have so much time while you’re pregnant to kind of put these things in to perspective. So it is a bit time to interview the daycare center and like I said earlier I believed this to be like a job interview process. So you’re going to interview and explore all of the avenues that you’re going to consider. You want to do your research and as they’re saying, you know, especially first time moms when you and I don’t know if you want to talk about this later but once you have your baby, it is very hard and scary to think about leaving your baby especially with somebody you don’t know. So that’s something to think. You give yourself time to think about that during your pregnancy and really consider what it is that you want to do and what is going to be the best for your family.

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     You have time to sit in on the daycare and watch and observe and make sure that you are comfortable with the people that you’re going to leave your — the most precious person in your life in their care and you have to feel comfortable and confident. Going take so long and it could take a while to get yourself to that place.


Sarah Blight:                Okay. So let’s chat about the kind of interview process that you were talking about.

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                What is appropriate for interviewing? I mean these are our children we’re talking about.

Amanda Bottleson:     It is.

Sarah Blight:                Yeah, so what is appropriate? Interviewing, setting up appointments, phone interviews, impromptu drop-ins, what are we talking about?

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure. Do you want me telling about the daycare interview?

Sarah Blight:                Yes.

Amanda Bottleson:     Interviewing daycare provider?

Sarah Blight:                Yes.

Amanda Bottleson:     When you sit down, people have to ask us everything and that you can imagine. First of all, you would want to know how they’re screening their staff and the process that they’re going through to hire their staff. Obviously, you want to make sure that they conduct background checks for their teachers. You want to know what trainings they offer their teachers. You can ask to look at their state reports and go through all of the inspections in the center. You can ask to look at their menu and especially for infants you want to know do they provide formula, how would they serve your breast milk if you’re going to pump, how would they heat the bottles up, will they provide baby food when your baby is ready. For your infant, you can talk to them about scheduling and how they’re going to work with you to keep your baby on schedule which is so important for you and for your baby.

Sarah Blight:                Do a lot of places just kind of your baby becomes part of their schedule? How do you guys do it at Youthland?

Amanda Bottleson:     Of course, yeah. It does and especially a good quality daycare will try to work with you the first couple of weeks because it’s really hard especially if you bring a baby in its 6 weeks, to put your baby on a schedule on that time schedule, on a feeding schedule when they’re kind of eating and sleeping is needed. But eventually age 3 or 4 months, they fall in to a really good routine which is another benefit to daycare because your child will be on this consistent routine everyday and when you get home, they’re going to be like proper [0:12:12] [Phonetic]. They’re going to want to eat it whatever time and then they’ll probably go down and sleep better at night for you.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. What else — for the mamas who are writing curiously right now, don’t worry we’re going to provide a downloadable PDF of all the questions and hints, little tidbits that you can ask during your interview process so don’t feel like you have to get write or just trying to write all these questions down. But what else, Amanda, do  new parents need to think about checking out even while they’re interviewing, things even to look forr while they’re actually at a daycare?

Amanda Bottleson:     That’s a great question. You would hope that the director is approachable and obviously, you would want to tour the entire facility. And I on a personal, I would always check for cleanliness. That is critical and so important in how clean their facility is. Nobody would want to ever put their child in something that wasn’t sterile and clean. Ask for references for other parents that go to the facility and if you can contact them and ask them about their experience at the daycare. You would want to make sure that they give you a complete handbook so that you can go over it with a director and ask questions that you are informed and all the policies of the daycare including what times they open, what times they close, how — what items they required you to bring in advance, diapers or wipes, what they will provide. How much notice they will give you if you are running low in supplies because that can be frustrating when you pick up at the end of the day and you know, “Hey, we need diapers and wipes by tomorrow morning.”

Sarah Blight:                Yeah, okay. What about talking to the actual teachers? Is that allowed? Are you allowed to do that? [Laughter]

Amanda Bottleson:     Absolutely. I would ask to observe the classroom and ask if you can have at least 30 to 40 minutes just to even if you could sit on the other side of the window and just watch, watch. Specifically if we’re talking about the baby room, watch how the caregivers are interacting with the babies. That is a very important component of child development that the caregiver is looking and making eye contact to each of the baby that they’re talking to them whether they’re changing their diaper. You should see the caregiver going, “Hello.” If they’re giving a bottle, they should be looking in their eyes and holding them. You should never see bottle propping which is where they put a pillow under the baby’s bottle. 

Sarah Blight:                And why is that?


Amanda Bottleson:     It’s a serious choking hazard.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. And so while you’re kind of observing these things, is there a certain like ratio that is desirable for — or that is maybe –

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                … state mandated or maybe it’s differs by state for, you know, caregiver.

Amanda Bottleson:     It will differ from — it will be different from state to state and you should be able to find it in your state’s website –

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     … whatever or whoever governs the daycares. For Ohio, it’s ODJFS and they will have the state mandated ratios. Obviously, if the daycares are succeeding these rations, that’s a major violation. Another pro to daycares is that you can report a violation and somebody can respond to the complaint. But an ideal infant ratio and on Ohio, the ratio is 1:5 infants or 2:12 which does seemed like a lot. But most daycares run 1:4. It’s a very safe general ratio.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, all right. Okay, as far as — this is the thing I always think because I am more of like a schedule-oriented person.

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                How do children sleep in daycares? How do they take naps? Is there — how does this work? [Laughter]

Amanda Bottleson:     Isn’t that amazing? They do. They do. [Laughter]

Sarah Blight:                Okay, so for Youthland Academy, how does it worked for you guys? What do you guys do for the little guys? I mean when they’re really little they can of course sleep anywhere but as they get a little more, you know, awake. Is that something that’s important to check out like how the sleeping in situated for naps and so and like that?

Amanda Bottleson:     I’m still happy that you brought up. It’s such an important, such an important thing to take in consideration when you go in to the infant room. First of all, ask make sure that your child is assigned is his or her own crib and that they are not sharing the crib that it is your child’s crib whether they are there or not there.

Sarah Blight:                Why is this important?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well, it’s important for illness prevention. You don’t want anybody else in your crib while your child is there and make sure the sheets are changed regularly. We change our sheets daily and wash them out and put them back clean each day and make sure that they do not have anything in the cribs, anything in the cribs at all and that they’ve always put the babies on their backs.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. Good, good. I’m sorry [Laughter] I’m writing all these things down.

Amanda Bottleson:     One other thing to take in to consideration, ask the daycare that you’re touring if they do crib checks and this is for daycare, for nannies, for in-home care, whatever you choose that they constantly check the cribs especially while your baby is under 6 months old.

Sarah Blight:                And why is that an important thing?

Amanda Bottleson:     Oh well, you know, we are all aware of the risk of SIDS and I can’t tell you in the 15 years that I’ve been running this company how many times during a simple crib checks has saved the baby’s life.

Sarah Blight:                Wow.

Amanda Bottleson:     Where if you do a crib check every 5 minutes and you look and everybody is fine and you come back 5 minutes later and somebody is not fine, you have time to react. Whereas if you just put them back in the crib and go back 2 hours later, you’ve lost that when you have opportunity.

Sarah Blight:                So alertness while your child is sleeping is huge.

Amanda Bottleson:     Yes.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, wow. Yeah because it seems like especially if the ratios are somewhat skewed then sleepy time would mean that’s where I’m less could I have to worry about but not as the daycare center and a good daycare center they’re still being vigilant to your child while they’re sleeping.

Amanda Bottleson:     Absolutely.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, good to know. Okay, what is not acceptable?  You’ve mentioned a few things that are just not acceptable like bottle propping or just, you know, while your child is sleeping they’re off of your list of people to worry about. What else — what else is not acceptable or should not be tolerated?

Amanda Bottleson:     If the baby falls asleep in the swing while in exercise or — the caregiver should put them put them in the crib within 15 minutes. So you don’t want to see baby sleeping in those apparatuses.

Sarah Blight:                Okay and again why?

Amanda Bottleson:     It’s just a state rule and you know, you kind of see their necks kind of go like that and it get in to an uncomfortable position and it’s about keeping them on schedule. The bed time is in the crib and we move them, they fall asleep. We can gently take them over and have them back down to sleep.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, what else? What else is something that should not be tolerated?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well going back to cleanliness –

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     … you want to ask the policy because you’re baby is going to be sharing toys with others babies. They — we know babies tend to put things in their mouths.


What is that daycare’s policy in regards to a toy after it’s been in somebody’s mouth or it’s been dropped on to the floor, in the area that’s not designated for play area and –

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     And you would hope that they would say that that toy is sanitized before it reenters the pool of toys –

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     That is the answer.

Sarah Blight:                That is the money answer. [Laughter]

Amanda Bottleson:     Yes. [Laughter]

Sarah Blight:                Okay. Are there any other glaring and even for non-infants maybe for toddlers or for older children, pre-school, any other general things that are should be a red flag if you’re touring a facility or talking to someone about daycare that should really raise a red flag for a parent?

Amanda Bottleson:     Well, if I was touring the older classrooms, let’s say the 2, 3, 4-year old classrooms, I would obviously screen the room for hazards immediately, toys that don’t belong in the classroom, bins that are broken. To me and that would be a sign, personally I would think if you can’t recognize that this bin is broken or that that isn’t appropriate, are you able to take care of my child? Are you confident enough to do that? Also I pay attention to the teachers, how they talk to the children, the curriculum that they implement and I would love to see how happy overall the children are. Are they engaged? Are they engaging with the teacher or are there children and not being attended to?

Sarah Blight:                Okay, really good questions. Okay, let’s chat food because I know –

Amanda Bottleson:     Okay, sure.

Sarah Blight:                … that’s something that you’re really passionate about and that you’re doing an amazing job with at Youthland. And that is what should parents be looking for as food? Now you mentioned that briefly that, you know, infants that kind of you’re going to find out what their system is for formula or breast milk that kind of stuff.

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure.

Sarah Blight:                Once the baby is like 6 months old and they’re getting introduced to solids, what should parents really start looking at as far as that’s concern with their daycare?

Amanda Bottleson:     That’s an excellent question. They obviously should ask for the menu in advance. They should investigate what – if it says carrots, what does that mean? Does it mean it’s carrots from a can? Does it eat it’s frozen carrots? Is there fresh carrots? How is the food in the daycare prepared and served to the children?

Sarah Blight:                Now, why does and you’ve guys have been doing this a long time, why does fresh fruit and nutritious food matter? Because it seems like when it comes to schools and it comes to education and childcare we think “Oh, it’s just not convenient. It’s not really possible for them to have the meals that I would prepare at home,” right? So is it possible to have nutritious food in a daycare setting and why is that important?

Amanda Bottleson:     That I couldn’t agree with you more. Why can’t we have the foods at school that we serve in home? And yes it would take a little bit more time and a little more thought, a little more planning but really at the end, once you invest that in, it’s all the same. It’s the same time at the end. Your cost will plateau out. So it’s really disappointing yourself and or apply at the daycare or the provider of the school applying themselves and making it a priority encouraging the staff to be on board with the changes, the cook, the director. So it’s important for so many reasons obviously. It’s important because your child is developing between birth and 6 years. The brain is developing. There are so much going on in their body and the fuel that we put in their bodies is so important for future, you know, to prevent illnesses, to prevent even a common flu that would go around. But to keep your child at the ultimate state of health would require putting the right fuel in to their bodies.

Sarah Blight:                Do you guys see a lot of differences in attitudes, in functioning, in health with the kids that you guys have because of your meals and the fact that they are so nutritious and organic?

Amanda Bottleson:     You know, it’s hard to tell if it does come from the meals or I do believe children build a resistance to — once you’re in child care, once in you’re school, you do start to build immunities and resistance to disease going around but the thing about the menus, I do see a huge difference in their overall attention span and their overall demeanor and sugar, putting a lot sugar in to the kids’ diet whether even it’s thru juice or just processed foods or refined sugars, just sense them in to a different state and it’s almost as if they’re like high and low and high and low where we want to kind of regulate and work with our families so that we’re helping our parents apply this at home so you can regulate their day at the highs and the lows.


Sarah Blight:                That’s really cool. Are there — you mentioned every states seemed to have its own standards for daycare.

Amanda Bottleson:     Right.

Sarah Blight:                Is there a way to find out where the daycares that are licensed by the state where those kind of rank or where — what kind of the scuttlebutt is or how they’re rated? Is there any website or resources?

Amanda Bottleson:     That is a great question. There is the 4C which is a, you know, and I’m not sure if that’s national or local here.

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     But that is an agency that is for referral for child care of all types. In Ohio I know that you can just Google the state of Ohio and it will have a list of all licensed daycare centers. It will have a list of all the dates of inspections anytime there’s been a complaint on the facility and what its findings were.

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     So I believe that’s available in every state but I don’t know if every state regulates it so differently.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. So you –

Amanda Bottleson:     Somehow the county level or somehow the state level. So it just depends.

Sarah Blight:                So just use your bestfriend Google and find out where that is for your state?

Amanda Bottleson:     Yes.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. How does cost factor in to child care? I think we all, of course, as parents want the, you know, the cream of the crop for our kids for child care. How does that factor in though for parents who are in a tighter budget? Is how much you spend really indicative of the quality child care that you’re going to receive?

Amanda Bottleson:     Sometimes it is and sometimes it isn’t. I think that is an excellent, excellent question and something to definitely research as you’re going through this process. And if you’re going with the nanny route, I definitely start it with your friends and what are you guys paying this person, what is the average rate of pay because you want your nanny to be happy and you don’t wanted her to feel that she is underpaid and overworked when she is at your house. As far as child care, you probably want to price compare the daycares that are in your area and the ones that are at the higher, higher range, find out why. Sometimes it could be because they have a beautiful building and you’re going in and you’re paying for the beautiful stone that’s on the front door when you go in and is that worth it you?

Some parents is they like to see that when they walk in. Some parents can say, “You know what? What I am concern about is what’s inside the building, how the classrooms are set up, what the daycare puts back in to their employees, how much do they spend on their employees, do they put in to their healthcare and then to their compensation so that their employees are happy and love their jobs.” So you know, I do think that’s some of the higher end daycares that have the most beautiful building at the end of the day most daycares it’s all the same employees. All of we all hire the same and interview the same workforce. So it’s not typically a different workforce than maybe another daycare would have.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. So it may come down to come of those other things like the cleanliness, the type of foods that they serve –

Amanda Bottleson:     Sure, yes.

Sarah Blight:                … the overall — yeah, the way it’s set up.

Amanda Bottleson:     And that’s why I would do your checklist. What is your — what can you live with and what can you not live with and if it’s food that you can’t live with, then pick one. If you need a beautiful daycare then stay on that route and you know, don’t settle for anything that’s not on your list.

Sarah Blight:                Okay. What are three steps that parents who are watching right now can take this week to kind of start finding the right child care situation for them? You mentioned having a list. What questions do they need to ask themselves to really establish what’s important to them?

Amanda Bottleson:     That’s great. I would start with your budget and figure out what you can afford to spend weekly or monthly on your childcare. Then I would look in to convenience. Is it more convenient to have somebody in your home? Is it more convenient for you to have the daycare right by your work? Is it more convenient to have it right by your home? And from there, I would start your research. I would start reading the state reports then touring some of the daycares. And I recommend never making an appointment to tour daycare center because they can prepare for you and be on their best behavior and you want to catch them in action. You want to see the day.

Sarah Blight:                So you always recommend dropping in?

Amanda Bottleson:     Yes.

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     Yes, I do.

Sarah Blight:                So what if the daycare if you drop in and they’re like, “Sorry, we can’t. We don’t do that” is that a red flag or is that…?


Amanda Bottleson:     I think that I would never — personally, I wouldn’t ever feel comfortable putting my child in a facility that doesn’t allow me to come in and out as I please.

Sarah Blight:                Okay.

Amanda Bottleson:     So I would definitely take that in to consideration.

Sarah Blight:                Okay, great. Well thank you so much, Amanda for sharing your wisdom with us. We will be putting a PDF, downloadable PDF underneath the interview here. So mamas, you guys can download some questions and things to look out for to help you identify what is important to you as well as questions to ask your potential prospects as you try to assess out what’s going to be the best for you and your baby. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them in the comment section below this interview and we are happy to dialog with you about it. Thanks again, Amanda for sharing with us.

Amanda Bottleson:     Thank you.

Sarah Blight:                Thanks all the mamas for watching. Yeah, we’ll see you soon.

  • Sarah Rezzeler

    So so so helpful! I need daycare for my baby when she comes & had no clue how to start finding what we wanted. I talked to friends, but they never did much research. I’m not putting my baby in daycare without knowing details. No way Jose! This was such a huge help, I was taking notes like a mad women! Thank you for finding Amanda!

    • Sarah Blight

      Amanda is fabulous and boy do we wish her Youthland Academies were here in Michigan! Make sure you download our question guide too. You’re off to a fantastic start Sarah! (nice name by the way;)

  • leticia

    This was another great interview! Such good information that even though it seems like common sense, it just doesn’t occur to you to think of all those things. I didn’t know exactly how picky you could be as a parent, for instance regarding the no crib sharing thing. But in retrospect, it’s like ‘of course that’s how it should be’. Really great stuff, thanks so much Sarah.

    • yourbabybooty

      Thanks Leticia. I totally thought the same thing after talking to Amanda. I was like “duh, well that makes total sense but I had never thought of that before!” Glad you found it helpful!