A Day in the Life of Leena Thakker, Franchisee for Oxford
There is never a dull moment in our house, but I’d rather be busy than not! Certainly since I bought the franchise for the Oxford area my life has been a whirlwind, which is great.
The alarm usually goes off at about 5.45am but thank goodness for the snooze button! So my husband, Vipul and I usually surface about 6.00am. After a quick ‘wake me up’ shower, I wake my 2 girls up at about 6.45am. Anya is 9 and Alaina is almost 4 and goes to preschool 3 times a week and the other 2 days is with me, continuing to enjoy Musical Minis! After getting the girls dressed we go down for breakfast about 7.15am. Nothing like that first cup of tea to get you started in the day. Our house is like Piccadilly Circus in the morning – chaotic.
At about 8.00am I load up the car with all my Musical Minis gear and then we set off for school at about 8.10am. The girls go to a school in Buckingham. Alaina’s preschool starts at 8.30am so it is a very early start for us. After kissing the girls goodbye I get back into my car and head off into Oxfordshire to my first class. Most of my classes start at 10am which gives me enough time to arrive at the venue and set up. Most of the work I am doing now is for the Children’s Centres, which I thoroughly enjoy and which can be challenging at times. Sometimes I have back to back classes at the same venue and other days I have a class in the morning and then another one in the afternoon. If I am running a morning one and an afternoon one, I tend to have my lunch in the car driving to the next venue. After lots of fun with the children, singing, playing instruments, demonstrating puppets for storytime, movement with musical stops and interacting with them, the sessions come to an end. Big hugs and kisses after the finale hokey cokey is one of the best perks of my job!
The day does not end there – it is then a mad dash for the school run after packing and loading up the car. Both Anya and Alaina finish school at 3.30pm and depending on which day of the week it is, the girls have quite a lot of after school activities. So Mondays and Wednesdays are the most hectic days. On Mondays both girls have karate so I pick them up from school, we then take Alaina for her karate lesson from 4.00pm – 4.30pm, then we come home, they have dinner and then we have to drop Anya off for her karate 5.30pm – 6.30pm. Wednesdays is very similar with Alaina having ballet lessons and Anya piano lessons. I do have to be super-organised with meals as we are always rushing around. And I am a bit of a fanatic about healthy meals with lots of fruit and vegetables! The evening routine is quite a strict one. So after dinner, bath, bedtime story Alaina is in bed by 6.30pm and Anya is in bed by 7.30pm. If Vipul gets back from work early enough (which is very rare!) we have dinner early with the girls otherwise we eat when he gets in. Meal times are very much catching up and finding out what we have all done during the day. It’s great when all four of us can have a meal together – weekends we always eat together as I think it is so important for the children to have good social manners at meal times.
After dinner, Vipul clears the kitchen up – he is much better than me. I prefer the cooking and making the mess and he is great at tidying and clearing up! Then the day has not ended. I usually have calls to attend to, where mums are enquiring about classes. Also I receive quite a few emails some days so they need to be answered. I like to deal with any enquiries immediately. I like to look at new locations to open up classes and also look at different places to advertise. Then it is time to get everything ready for the next day – sterilising whistles and cleaning instruments and then stacking everything in the hallway to be loaded into the car for the next day.
Before Christmas I was going to bed at a ridiculous times – sometimes 1.00am so I have made myself a New Year’s resolution to go to bed by 11.00pm the latest. If I don’t then Vipul comes and switches the computer off, so I have no choice! Typically that is my day as the Musical Minis Franchisee for Oxford and I would not have it any other way!