Finding The One...

preschool that is.

Most of us have been there. You know, searching, crying and contemplating making the lack of a second income, in leiu of placing our little ones in childcare, work...

As I look back on 2014, I can't think of anything without my mind going directly to my girls, naturally. When I do this my mind also travels directly to The Learning Cottage. I've been wanting to write to The Learning Cottage staff for a long time to tell them how much respect and gratitude I have for the school and care provided for my children. So, here goes. I write this openly in hopes of sharing my experience with moms and dads whom have had the challenge of finding the one... preschool that is :)

I know I've said it many times before but I am that "crazy mom" that I wouldn't want their child to be in my class. I'll admit it. I'm a "helicopter" parent and will constantly hover over my babies to make sure they are getting the best no matter where they are (even family members' houses :/ ). From the day my first was born nothing has ever been good enough and I've always been able to find something that I am displeased with. I know this is not a flattering attribute and I am working on it. :) School?!?! The mere thought of my children being taken care of by someone that I hadn't known and trusted my whole life scared me. So much so that I took a lot of time off of work making our family go backwards financially to say the least. I knew the day would come where I would need to find a school and daycare for the girls but every time that I began to think about it I would begin to cry, literally. It still had to be done. Back in February we went to many places. It would take two seconds for me to know that I would never leave my babies there. After visiting several places, I was in tears and decided to visit the last place on my list. I always liked to just stop in places because I didn't want a show, I wanted the real deal. That last place was The Learning Cottage. I immediately felt a weight lifted off my shoulders as I walked in. The overall vibe was so positive and just REAL. I believe it was either that day or the next that I signed the girls up and I cannot explain how fortunate to the owners, Aimee & Ashley, that a fantasy place like The Learning Cottage, A Fusion Early Learning School, exists.

The Learning Cottage, in Sarasota, FL, encompasses everything that I could have possibly hoped for and then some. Compassion for the students as well as the parents, professionalism, a quality education, high standards, a healthy learning environment, and most of all the importance of being and teaching the students to be a kind and good person. I will hear my three year old recite the way the staff speaks to her when she is playing teacher and it is always so positive (even when she is guiding her imaginary students for misbehaving lol). I get tears in my eyes every time I hear her her sweet little voice say "The Kindness Pledge" when playing quietly by herself. The knowledge she has gained and demonstrated is incredible and she continues to impress us each day when telling us about topics we know she hasn't learned from us. I can remember being nervous about her first school experience because I know she can be inconsolable at times but she has grown so much from just 5 months ago and we accredit a lot of that to The Learning Cottage. I can't say thank you to The Learning Cottage staff enough for having patience with our girls.

Our 18 month old loves going to school as well and is she so well taken care of while she is there. She is always happy when I drop her off (as her Toddler teacher ensures her comfort at each drop off) and is always happy when I pick her up. There isn't a moment that goes by while I'm at work where I wonder if they are alright- Doesn't even cross my mind. I know they are cuddled and loved and I can't imagine what life would be like if I had to worry about that.

...So, thank you for giving me a peace of mind that I truly didn't think was attainable.
I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you have given our children. I know they are cared for, listened to, and given all the tools required for a rock solid learning foundation. They truly enjoy school and that speaks volumes to all of you, at The Learning Cottage. I will be forever grateful for that.

To other moms and dads alike, I say to you- go with your gut. When visiting schools DO bring your children. Their comfort level in each setting coupled with your mom and dad intuition will lead the way. Take your time... and you'll find the one <3


The Helicopter Mom :)

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