At Little Sprouts, we have a mom’s night out every year. It’s one night when no one is allowed but moms and we have fun doing things for moms. I let the moms be creative, feed them good food, and pamper them. Why would I go to all that trouble? Because mom’s need support. I feel that being a mom is the hardest job in the world and I want to show my moms how special they are and how valuable they are. I know this world is a hard place and so many demands are placed on parents. Moms have a special place in my heart because I am a woman and have felt the assault on women in this world. I also know how it can feel like being a mother is full of failure and disappointment. No one is ever going to do everything right and motherhood is about learning and following God’s plan for families. I try to be as supportive as possible to my moms and help them with their job of running the family in this busy and scary world.
It’s important to spend time building relationships with your parents and not just the kids, the parents are as big a part of this job as the kids are. Being open and caring with your parents is very important. At Little Sprouts we have family parties for families to get to spend time with the kids and get to know each other. I feel that it’s a vital part of the children’s education. Parents need to be involved and know who you are and what you are about. In addition to mom’s night out, we have a gingerbread decorating party every year, click here to see what we did last year, and Easter egg hunt each year for families to come and get together and spend time doing something quality with their kids.
The first thing I do to plan the mom’s night is choose a theme. This year I chose disco because I had a mom dress up as a hippy for Halloween. It was so cute. And I already had a hippie costume, so I knew I could wear that if I wanted. I started to think it over and realized I already had disco fever music cds in my collection of music for the kids, and I already had disco balls from previous parties and activities with the kids at church. I’m a hippie at heart, so I knew this was going to be fun for me. Even though only a few of my moms were alive in the 70’s and they were born right at the end, I knew I could bring enough 70’s to the group to make it work. I decided on fondue for the party food, and borrowed my daughter’s lava lamp to add the final touch. Then I had to find an outlet for creativity. We always make a craft at mom’s night because I think creating is a great way to build people up. Something that happens inside when you create is life changing and if we go too long without creating things, we start to shrivel up inside. When I thought of tye dye, I knew it was perfect!
At the end of the party, I always pamper the moms by doing Mary Kay Satin hands treatment on whoever wants to and then letting them wax their hands in my paraffin waxer and sit and relax. Then I give them some small token gift and a letter from me to their children telling them how much I love them. The letter has a collage of the past year on the back to show many things the child has learned. I start writing my letters in January and usually have mom’s night in February, so it gives me plenty of time to get them done and add the photos on the back.
I just want my moms to know I appreciate them and how hard they work to be good moms. And I want them to know how special they are to this world. I want to build them up and renew their sense of adventure and confidence for this thing we call life.
I do all the cooking for this event because I do it on Friday night and no one has time to cook anything up. I have the moms bring something for the craft, such as this time the t-shirt we tye dyed, but I never tell them ahead what we are doing or making. Surprise is a fun adventure.
Here are a few themes I have used in past years:
Garden party-we planted seeds and exchanged garden gifts. We also decorated a pot for the plants.
Upcycling party-I made door prizes from recycled items such as cork boards and record serving trays and made all the décor from recycled items. I taught facts about waste. We didn’t’ eat any recycled food though. But we did make some bottle cap lockets.
Spa Party-we made bath salts and did all kinds of pampering things. For dinner we had spa food and spa water.
Olympics Party-we competed in Olympic games and had foods from around the world, we made wreaths in honor of the Olympic rings!
Luau Party-we made decorated flip flops and ate Hawaiian food.
Grease Party-we ate at an old fashioned hamburger shop and then came to my house and watched the movie.
Even if you don’t do a big party or a Mom’s Night Out on your time off, think of some ways you can get your parents involved in your daycare. You will be amazed at how much it improves your business and your reputation. Parents appreciate feeling like they are part of their children’s life in any way and daycare is a big part of that life.
Here are a few ideas of how:
- Ask parents to bring donations of things you use a lot of like crayons or tissues.
- Invite parents for lunch on Thanksgiving or ask them to send side dishes to go with your turkey.
- Ask parents to send treats to share for your Valentine party instead of making it all yourself. You would be surprised at how much some of them enjoy making goodies for the kids and if they don’t, most people don’t mind grabbing some cookies or bananas at the store to send.
- Invite parents to come to your Halloween party and enjoy watching their kids.
- Ask parents to share a tradition or favorite family food with you so you can incorporate your child’s culture at home into the daycare setting.
- Share pictures or stories with the parents of things their kids are doing.
- Ask parents to collect recyclables like milk jugs or toilet paper rolls for a project you want to do with the kids.
- Send home a project for parents to do with kids at home and return to daycare.
- Ask a parent or grandparent to come to daycare and read stories to the kids or tell about their jobs.
Have fun with it, let them play, enjoy their company. Your parents are your biggest asset, not your enemy, they can make or break your business. Show them what you have, all of your skills and talents. They will appreciate you for it and it will help your business find great success.
At last night’s Disco Fever Mom’s Night Out we had a ton of fun. When the moms came in I had my tye dye shirt on and my crocheted headband like I always made and wore as a kid in the 70’s. I had the house dark and the disco balls turning and my favorite disco fever tunes playing. I had made some 70’s fondue with dippers and some pigs in a blanket for them to eat. I invited them to soak the t-shirts they brought in the presoaking stuff to make the dye set and we ate dinner. No one wanted to sing YMCA with me, but we had lots of giggles and laughs. Everyone told funny stories and some moms asked questions about their kids and what they’ve been doing here. After we ate we started working on our shirts. Everyone seemed to enjoy making them and they all turned out amazing! Then we wrapped them up to take home. You have to let the dye set for 8 hours, so in the morning, they had to rinse them out and then wash them. Then they sent pictures of the finished product. I did a drawing for a couple of door prizes. We had been playing the swear jar game all night. When each mom came in I gave her 4 quarters and every time they said their children’s names, they had to put a quarter in. Whoever had the most quarters at the end of the night took the jar home. Some moms are really competitive which makes it super fun. After the drawing, we pampered our hands and relaxed for a bit and then I gave them their letters and collages and a candy bar to take home. The evening ended with lots of hugs, some tears and sweet dreams. One of my favorite things all year.
Here’s how the shirts turned out. Grooovy!