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Many Mums are convinced that their baby or toddler should be cared for by them and them alone. Childminders, Nannies, even professional nurseries just wouldn't do a good enough job. However, that may be the case when babies are tiny and completely reliant on Mum for all food and comfort, but its worth thinking about the great benefits of offering your little one a bit of time away from you once you feel confident about having a few hours away from each other now and then.
The benefits of having a bit of time for yourself are obvious: perhaps an uninterrupted nap, a luxurious, candle-lit bubble bath or a trip to the shops to buy a new frock. Having a bit of time to focus on yourself is important.
The benefits to your little toddler are many. It's a great chance for them to socialise with other children of a similar age and to have a bit of time watching and learning from them. Having some time in a safe, professional establishment or with a trained carer is a good idea because the environment and activities will be appropriate for our little one's age. They also are likely to get to do things you don't do: perhaps do mucky things like big paintings with hands and feet or kiddie cooking or yoga or learn a new language!
Children aged 3-4 in the UK are entitled to at least 12.5 hours of free childcare per week. Any extra to this may be cheaper than you think - help is available through tax credits. If you work more than 16 hours a week, you may even be entitled to 80% of the cost of childcare back!
So, while Mum is always best in some cases, its worth looking in to a bit of childcare now and again for both you and your little one's sake, because there are plenty of reasons why Mum deserves a bit of time to herself!