Working remotely has opened up a whole new way of sharing work loads among parents. Being a WAHM (Work at home mum) myself, I have been trying to create new ways to come together with local mums to make life easier!
My parenting tribe is a facebook group that discusses this very aspect of life. Bring back the village .. parenting was never meant to be an isolated event. So if you are looking at joining forces with some local mums, take these points into consideration.
Try to find local play areas that have free WIFI. It will save you fiddling around with trying to hotspot off your phone.
2. Enclosed Play Areas
If you are meeting up with 3 other mums to share child minding and work time, you want the area to be an enclosed play area. Imagine chasing after 3 toddlers all running in opposite directions. Do yourself a favour, and make the child minding as EASY as possible. If you are on the laptop trying to concentrate, you don't want to be stressed about your kid running out onto a road!
3. Food and COFFEE
Need I say more? You can still bring a packed lunch but if you are somewhere with coffee, it will be a good day.
4. Tables and Chairs available
To productive, you need to have your setup comfortable and spacious. Google for photos of the play areas to check out the "office space"
5. Don't get offended if someone turns you down
Mum work dates are not really a common thing. I had never heard of anyone doing this and it will not be for everyone. Some people will want to meet up for play dates and socialise, some people might not want to share child minding... whatever the reason - some mums will say no. Don't be weird and defensive about it - its not a highschool date at the movies where you need to over think if you should hold their hand or not. We are all adults, get over it and ask someone else.
6. Be careful of weirdos
Remember to have your stranger danger alert on. There are always weirdos out there. Start off with friends and people in your baby groups. If someone adds you on facebook and they have 2 friends, a profile picture of a flower and they want to go on a work date and tell you to drop your kid off....... maybe just don't do that.
7. Find friends that have similar values to you
This one is not compulsory but it can make the experience more enjoyable and easy going. If you are both vegetarians and go to bible study, then you will be more comfortable with them knowing which foods to give your child and how you would answer certain questions they may ask. Work dates could turn into kid swaps further down the track. So finding people who are similar will suit this if you decide to leave your child with them in future.
8. Work dates can be done at home!
I keep talking about laptops and WIFI but what if your work is cooking and cleaning and you want some time without a child attached to your leg? Well get a friend over once a week for a couple of hours to watch the kids then the week after.... SWAP!
Remember - there are no rules to parenting. We make them up as we go along, so let's get creative... what are some other ideas for mum work dates?