Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Echuca mum thankful for grandma help

Echuca mun Kristielle Burrage has been able to return to work after the birth of Hunter, thanks to the help of Nanna and Grandma.

KATHLEEN TONINI November 26, 2012 4:49am

Debbie Burrage, Kristielle Burrage, Hunter Burrage and Vicki Bradney.

When Kristielle Burrage returned to work three weeks ago, her mum and mother-in-law were both willing to step in and lend a hand to look after her son.

Hunter, nine months, spends one day a week with Debbie Burrage (Nanna) and Kristielle’s mum Vicki Bradney (Grandma).

Another day, he goes to work with his mum, who works at a child care centre.

Kristielle works three days a week and looks after Hunter on her days when she is not at work.

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The arrangement seems to work well, with Debbie and Vicki grateful to have a full day a week to spend with their grandson.

‘‘I love it,’’ Vicki said.

‘‘My three daughters were basically looked after by my parents when I worked when I was young and I see the relationship that they’ve got with my parents and I want that with my grandchildren; that same closeness.

‘‘I think if any grandparents can do it, it’s something they should.’’

Debbie said it was an ‘‘absolute privilege’’ to have Hunter.

‘‘I’m really glad I have the opportunity to have him one day a week. It’s great to have that interaction for a whole day, rather than just a visit. It’s beautiful,’’ she said.

‘‘I also had help from my mum and I know how important it was for me to have her help.’’

It suits Kristielle and husband Shaun too.

Kristielle said while her main reasons to work were financial, her reasons for choosing family child care were not.

Instead, she believes Hunter is too young to be in child care three days a week and prefers to have family members caring for him.

‘‘My mum offered when I was pregnant to drop one day a week to have him when I wanted to go back to work and my mother-in-law works from home and she also offered to have him one day a week,’’ she said.

‘‘(I’m) loving being back at work and I like knowing he’s (Hunter) with my family,’’ she said.

Next year, Kristielle plans to return to full-time work and have Hunter in child care for three days.

‘‘I’m hoping it (the arrangement) will go until he’s in school, because I don’t want him to be full-time in childcare if he doesn’t have to,’’ she said.

‘‘It works really well.’’

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