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Sticker shock

I was lucky enough to be able to stay home for the first year of my daughter's life, but as her first birthday approached I knew it was financially time to get started again. The daycares in my area were all acceptable, but most were warehouse type "kindercare" places. I wanted a more personal and family situated one. We were lucky with ours, where our daughter spent her years from one to five with about 12 other kids (5 in her age group). The biggest shock to the system was the amount of money it cost. This was the years 1999 to 2003 and I was only working as a substitute teacher and my partner had a decent job, but not one with a huge salary. The cost ended up being about $8-10K a year!!! That was almost all of what I made as a sub in the beginning. However, this daycare gave our daughter skills that she still uses today at age 12, so I can't complain. I'm one of the lucky ones! I was just happy when I landed a full time teaching job. How do people with multiple children afford it at all?