Marketing Your Family Child Care Online

Online Marketing

Why is it important?

In this day and age it isn't enough anymore to simply post a sign on your lawn or window.  This is especially true if you are new to this business and just starting out.  I hear all of the time that when it comes to family child care our biggest source of clients is word of mouth.  For me this isn't true.  I actually took a look at where most of my clients were coming from and the majority of them found me through the internet, even my first client found me online.   

The reality is that we are in the millennial generation where people born between 1981 through 2000 are now in their teens and thirties.  The millennial generation uses much more technology than ever before.  They use it to shop, play games, and to research and find products and services much more than any other generation ever did.  According to a study done in 2012 94% of them use the internet, 83% view digital photos, 81% use social media, 97% use a cell phone, 67% use a smart phone, 76% use Facebook and 20% use Twitter.  These people also account for 80% of all births and 91% of all first births.  Look at all of those untapped resources you could be using to find clients!

So how do you increase your online presence in order to get more clients?

Check Your Listing Score

Before you do anything go to and check your online listing presence.  Enter the name of your business and you will see a graph of how complete your listings are, which listings need more content and which places you haven't created a listing in at all.  The site even provides you with buttons that will take you directly to where you want to go if you want to update or create a listing in 15 of the best places you can have a listing. 

Create/Update Your Listings

Create listings in all major business listings you can possibly add your business to.  Create a listing in Google+, Bing, Yahoo!, Factual, Yellow Pages, HotFrog, Facebook, Foursquare, Superpages and Yelp.

Add as much content to your listing as possible.  Make sure your listings are consistent (they all match) and filled out entirely.  This is important!  You MUST add your address (not a PO box) so that people can find you!  I cannot stress how important listing your address is.  If you don't list your address you won't be able to maximize the benefits of online listings.  Also, if you post your address as "123 Your St, Ventura, CA 93003" in one listing and "123 Your Street, Ventura, California 93003" in another, the internet can't make that distinction.  Staying consistent will help you rank higher in search listings.

Add photos, videos, good content, update posts (you can copy and paste your Facebook updates to your Google+), a link to your website, your email address and even reviews!  The more content you add the more likely someone is going to want to read it.  

Use Social Media

Creating pages in social media and actually using them and updating them regularly can also greatly increase your exposure.  Create a business page in Facebook, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram (I have listed them in order of importance) then update each account at least twice a week, if not more regularly.  

Ask your clients to sign photo releases and get permission (in writing) to allow you to post photos of their children on marketing material and social media.  Then go crazy taking photos and videos of the children playing, participating in activities, singing songs, acting out a short play and eating meals that you have prepared for them and then upload them to your business's social media sites.  Ask the parents to subscribe to your social media sites to see updates and photos of the children's day.  Your clients will see photos of their child and "like" them and may even share them on their own feeds and then their friends will see it also.  The goal is for others to see how much fun the children are having and say "Wow, I want my child to go there too".   

Have a Good Website

Make sure you create a website for your daycare.  Make it organized, easy to navigate and add content that potential clients want to see.  You really should use a lot of terms like child care, daycare, preschool, kindergarten, after school, infant care, summer camp etc. on your website as much as possible.  These terms will help your website pop up higher in search listings because these are important terms that parents use when they look for similar searches.  Don't make a simple home page with a link telling parents to enter, insert a lot of descriptive content with these keywords so that they can find you.  Make it professional, easy to go from page to page, and descriptive.  It needs to tell the reader what your daycare is about, why you're different and why you're special.  

I also encourage you to stay away from Flash technology.  Apple products like iPhones and iPads don't recognize Flash so if you have a Flash website Apple product users will only see a big blank white spot.  I don't need to tell you how popular Apple products are and you don't want to limit yourself from these potential clients.  

Once you have a website keep it updated.

Post Your Reviews Online

Add reviews to any online listings that you may have, not just your website.  57% of online shoppers trust online reviews just as much as a personal recommendation.  This is important because without reviews on your website or listings customers may just pass you by.  Out of a listing of 10 daycares a parent is more likely to click on your listing if it has reviews even though it's at the bottom of the list if no other listing has reviews.  Keep that in mind.  

So ask your clients to review your daycare.  If you have a hard time getting clients to leave reviews think about offering an incentive of like $1-$5 off of their next week's tuition for every positive review they write on your listings to help make it worth their while.  Give them a questionnaire of some things they could talk  about you and your daycare to get them started.  Other parents want to know what your current clients are saying about you.  How have you helped their children?  What is different and fun about your program?  What do the parents love about you?

Testimonials Page

Once your clients have given you reviews online you can take those reviews and also gather up any written reviews that you've collected over the years (nice things that clients have said in their termination notices, birthday cards, thank you cards etc.) and create a testimonials page on your website.  Don't bury this page and make it difficult to find.  Post one or two testimonials right on your home page and add a link that takes the reader straight to your testimonials.  

Make this page as interesting as the rest of your pages.  If you have written testimonials that you are adding include a nice photo of the parent and their child.  Spice it up by asking your parents to record a short 30-second to 1-minute audio clip of their testimonial and load that clip right next to the written testimonial.  Better yet, have one play as soon as someone opens up your testimonials page.  An even more fabulous idea is to ask your parents to record their testimonial on video and post that on your site.  This is super easy to do nowadays with camera devices on almost every phone.  You can even offer to hold the camera for them while they talk and ask them to hold their child or to have their child sit in their lap while they talk.  Photos, audio and video will put that very real image of a satisfied parent in the reader's mind and make it that much more real to them which is even more convincing that text alone.  

Now Get Crackin'

Don't get overwhelmed, take it a step at a time.  You can make a list of everything that I mentioned here and make it a goal to work on and complete one thing on the list a week.  Make your first goal to sit down and make a plan of everything you need to do and how you want to do it ... then do it.

I'll even include a bulleted list of things to do in order of importance:
  1. Create a website.
    1. Home page.
    2. About Us page.
    3. Program page.
    4. Parent page. (add testimonials here later or make a separate page)
    5. Contact Us page.
  2. Submit your website URL to search engines manually (copy and paste your website address)
    1. Google
    2. Bing (will show up in Yahoo!'s search results also)
  3. Create a Facebook Business page
  4. Create a Google+ account for your daycare.
  5. Create a YouTube account for your daycare.
  6. Create a Pinterest board for your daycare. (to post your activities)
  7. Create business listings in:
    1. Bing
    2. Yahoo! Local Business
    3. Superpages
    4. Yelp
    5. Factual
    6. Yellow Pages
    7. HotFrog
    8. Foursquare
  8. Ask parents to leave reviews on your listings.
  9. Create a LinkedIn account
  10. Create a Twitter account
  11. Create an Instagram account

Ages and Stages Questionnaire


ASQ-3 is a screening tool for infants and young children which can identify developmental delays during the first 5 years of a child's life.  The questionnaires take about 10–15 minutes to Complete and scoring takes about 2–3 minutes.

The CA QRIS program uses the ASQ-3 as a part of the quality improvement process.  

Free ASQ Screening 

Parents can fill out a free ASQ questionnaire to see if their child’s developmental progress is on track, and results will be mailed to them within two weeks. 

You can also find the questionnaires online by doing a search for "ESQ-3 questionnaire ____" with the months where the blank space is.  There are 21 questionnaires: 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 27, 30, 33, 36, 42, 48, 54, and 60 months of age.  I can't post them here myself but you can find them online.

Enrollment Forms

The Parent Packet

After I have interviewed with a family and the parents are ready to enroll I give them a Parent Packet to take home and read.  The Parent Packet is a folder with all of my enrollment information and forms.  I do this because I think that it's more organized and the parents are less likely to lose something if I send it all home together like this.

I buy the folders during the "back-to-school" sales when I can get a whole bunch of them for $0.10 each ... and I do buy a whole bunch of them.  If there is a limit on them I take my husband and sometimes even my mom, several times.  Some people don't know that at some office supply stores that have limits on school stuff will waive or raise the limit if you are a teacher so I went into the store and signed up to be a member as a teacher (I gave my license number).  

So anyway, I buy a whole bunch of these folders in all of the colors that they have (I use these folders for other things too).  The folder that I get has two inside pockets and brad-like fasteners for hole-punched papers.  This is perfect for what I need.  The ones I buy from Office Depot are called 3 pronged portfolios with 2 pockets.

I also buy large print-at-home labels.  Mine are the white Avery 2x4" Shipping Labels (#18163).  I go online and download the Microsoft template and make labels for the covers to my Parent Packets.  Each label has the name of my daycare home, says Parent Packet, has my address, my telephone number and my license number.  

I have a Policy Handbook that I created for my clients.  I print out one for each client, hole-punch it and fasten it with the prong fasteners inside the folders.  

In the left pocket I add all of the forms that licensing requires as well as additional forms that I created.  These are all of the forms that I need them to sign and return.

My Forms:

In the right pocket I put all of the licensing documents that I'm required to give to clients as well as other information that I typed up that I want them to know.  These are the papers that don't need to be signed but are still important enough to be given to them to keep.  
You may also notice that the pockets each have four little slits.  These are for you to add your business cards to them.  I have a hard time sometimes with getting the corners of my business cards to fit into these teeny-tiny little slits so I just staple it directly onto the pocket.

Client Interviews Part III: Tha Playdate

There's not one way to skin a cat and I for one have asked many providers for a run through of how their interview process works and taken the "best of" (in my opinion) to create my own client interview process.  The goal is to streamline the process so that I can save time but also cover all important topics in an attempt to "weed out" candidates.  My interview process consists of three parts; 
Part I The First Phone Call, Part II The First In-Person Interview and  Part III a Playdate. 
In my previous post I discussed how I conduct my first in-person interview.  If it went well and there were no obvious "red flags" then I will invite one parent back with the child during daycare hours.  This is a relatively short meeting lasting about 30 minutes that I schedule in between meal times and during free-play.  


The day before the playdate I will contact the parent to confirm the date and time to make sure that the time still works for them.
The morning of the playdate I will contact them again to give them my address and directions to my home as well as directions on where to park (I live in a condo community and have designated parking).  This serves as a last reminder and reduces the chances of a parent forgetting or a "no show".
Before the playdate I make sure that, as usual, I clean up well after meals/snacks and that the space is relatively clean not including the toys and materials that the children are playing with.  I normally may have cups of water and a pitcher on a low table for the children but, depending on the age of the potential client's child, I may put these up and out of reach.
I will have what I call a Parent Packet prepared and handy.  The Parent Packet consists of all paperwork that I require parents to read and/or fill out in order to enroll.  For me this includes a contract, policy handbook, licensing forms, information about my daycare and other forms that I require for enrollment.
I also let the daycare children know in the morning that we will be having guests that day and remind them of the rules so that they are prepared and in an attempt to keep energy levels low during the playdate.  I find that if I don't do this I have more issues with behavior and energy levels.


Once the potential client and child arrive I greet them and invite them in.  I will introduce the child to my daycare children and if the child is about 2 1/2 years old or older I will suggest that my daycare children show the child our toys.  During this time I will briefly go over the child's needs again with the parent to make sure that what they have said their needs are has stayed consistent throughout the whole process.  I will also ask for details about the child's home routine.  I will also keep an eye on how the child interacts (or doesn't) with the daycare children and the child's general temperament.
I want to see a number of things before I can make a decision on whether I think the child is a good fit or not.
  • How the child interacts with the parent
  • How the parent interacts with the child during play
  • How the child interacts with the other children
  • How the other children interact with the child
  • How the child reacts to me
If the child is an infant I will ask specifics about meals, diapering, and nap routines.  I will ask the parent to go through the bed-time/nap routine for me and then show me how the child is held, if at all, in order to fall asleep.  I will also require that the parent feed the infant an entire bottle in my presence.  I do not take the parent's word for it when it comes to whether or not an infant is bottle ready.   Sometimes a parent will say that their infant drinks from a bottle when in fact the infant has trouble or doesn't take a bottle at all and I require that an infant be completely bottle ready before enrollment.
I also ask if there are any medical conditions or food allergies that I need to know about as well as any personal, cultural or religious beliefs that I should take into consideration. 
Any challenging behavior  that I see is discussed, but is not altogether a deal-breaker depending on whether the behavior is developmentally normal for a typical child.  If the playdate goes well I will give the parent a Parent Packet to take home with them and will let them know that I will follow up with them soon. 

CAUTION!   I said this in my previous post and I will say it again here.  Never agree to enroll a client on the spot.  At the end of every interview or meeting I tell the parent that I will finish up interviews and contact them after making my decision... even if I don't really have another interview.  Wait at least 24 hours after an interview before making a decision so that the excitement and nerves have passed.  You may think back and see some "red flags" that might become an issue later, or might find another family that's a better fit.


When the end of the playdate appointment arrives I let the parent know that the playdate is at an end and that I need to continue with our day.  If I think that the playdate well I may give the parent a Parent Packet to take home.  I give them a date to hear back by and I walk them to the door and say goodbye. 

Once I make a decision and decide who I want to enroll I call my first choice and offer them the spot.  I give them a date to bring a non-refundable deposit by and remind them that if I don't have the deposit by that date that I will call the next person on the list.  Never hold a spot for a family without a deposit and always have the parent sign a form that states how much they paid, how long you'll hold the spot for (start date), that the deposit is non-refundable, and a date to have the forms and contract signed and returned by. 

Client Interviews Part II: First In-Person Interview

There's not one way to skin a cat and I for one have asked many providers for a run through of how their interview process works and taken the "best of" (in my opinion) to create my own client interview process.  The goal is to streamline the process so that I can save time but also cover all important topics in an attempt to "weed out" candidates.  My interview process consists of three parts; 
Part I The First Phone Call, Part II The First In-Person Interview and  Part III a Playdate. 

How I Do It

In my last post I talked about phone interviews and the last "to do" was to invite them back.  So now what?  There's not one way to skin a cat but here's what works for me.
I'd like to start off with a little bit about how I prefer to conduct my interviews.  I for one do not hold the first interview during daycare hours.  There are several reasons for this ...
  1. Having interviews after hours (weekends on occasion) while my family is home (my husband, mother or adult sister) makes me feel safer. 
  2. Children tend to act out when guests are here which messes up my groove and can leave a bad impression on the potential client.
  3. My clients appreciate that I don't conduct interviews during daycare hours. 
  4. I don't know them from Adam.  I work alone during the day and there is no way I am welcoming a stranger into my house in a house full of children.
  5. My current daycare children don't get the attention and care that they require if I am holding an interview during the day, likewise I feel that the potential client doesn't get the 1 on 1 attention during an interview if I have children to supervise.
Instead I of holding the first in-person interview during a time when I have daycare children present I hold the first (and longer) interview during a time when I'm free and then hold a shorter "play date" at a later date if I feel that the family may be a good fit.
The interview is not just a time for the parents to interview me but also a time for me to interview the family.  I want to see the family dynamics and see how they react when their child's behavior needs to be corrected.  I also want to see how the child behaves around the parents.

Before The Interview
I get everything that I need for the interview prepared before interview time.  This includes cleaning and de-cluttering both inside and outside of my home.

Inside the Home:
  • De-clutter surfaces like countertops, tabletops, etc. and dust/wipe
  • Clean bathroom; wipe counters and mirrors, swoosh toilet, clean sink, sweep/spot-mop floor, shake out/vacuum rugs and empty waste basket
  • Wash dishes and clean kitchen sink
  • Check for fingerprints/grime on walls, switch plates, doors etc.
  • Pick up and organize toys
  • Fluff couch pillows
  • Sweep floors and spot-mop
  • Vacuum rugs and carpet
  • Close the door to any rooms that are not going to be on the "tour"
Back Yard:

  • De-clutter surfaces
  • Check for obvious cobwebs
  • Pick up and organize toys
  • Sweep porch/concrete
  • Check for hazards and broken toys/equipment (should be doing this daily anyway)
  • Check grass and plants for trimming/mowing/raking

Front Yard

  • Check for cobwebs
  • Wash windows
  • Sweep porch/sidewalk
  • Check grass and plants for trimming/mowing/raking
  • Check decorations to make sure they are straight
  • Check flag to make sure it's not rolled up

I also take out my Daycare Binder as well as have two personal copies of my handbook handy and a bulleted list of my policies.  The Daycare Binder has my resume, training and workshop certificates, sample newsletters and TB and background clearances for all of the adults in my home.  The bulleted list of my policies is a brief overview of the policies in order in which they are listed in my handbook and include the page numbers of where they are in the handbook.

Ten minutes or so before the interview I turn the ringer on my house phone and cell phone off and turn off the television/radio.  

During The Interview

Once the family arrives I invite them in and make the formal introductions.  If possible I have everyone living in the home present during the beginning of the interview so that the potential clients can meet them.  For me this includes my husband, mother and three children.  This is important to me because I want the family to meet them so that they know who lives in the home in order to determine whether they feel comfortable with them or not.  I make eye contact, smile and give assertive handshakes to the adults.  Once the formal introductions are made my husband takes the children upstairs or outside so that I can conduct the interview without interruptions. 
I immediately begin by taking control and give the family a tour of the daycare part of my home.  I conduct the tour by explaining what we use the rooms for and point out things that they wouldn't know unless they asked.  Normally my tour takes about 15 minutes because I go over A LOT.  This is my "sales pitch" time.
Here are some brief examples of what I would say (but not everything):
Living Room
"This is our living room and main play space.  As you can see the toys are kept in low bins and organized by type so that the children can access and find toys easily.  A main goal of mine is to promote independence so that is why this is important.  Here we have cubbies.  Each child has their own cubby for their belongings so that they a have their own place to keep their own things.  This space also doubles as our nap space ..."
"Here is the kitchen.  As you can see there is a gate which keeps the children out.  That's for supervision purposes.  If I am in the living room and they go into the kitchen then I can't see them so I put up the gate.  It's just an extra precaution because even if it wasn't up or didn't close properly I don't keep anything dangerous within reach.  Cleaning supplies are kept in a high cabinet, knives and other sharp objects are locked up and the stove knobs are removed any time that it's not being used ..."
"Our bathroom door is kept closed at all times when it's not being used.  We have a child-size flip down toilet seat installed so that the children can use the toilet just like an adult.  It looks just like the adult version which makes them feel more grown-up because they go potty just like mommy and daddy.  The toilet is even slightly lower than traditional toilets for the same reason.  If you ever use the toilet you'll feel the difference (smile).  The children use the step for easy access to the sink and we practice good hand washing skills.  The soap dispenser is hands-free and automatic so that they don't have to touch the container, this reduces contamination.  We have a dispenser with paper towels instead of cloth hand towels to dry our hands for the same reason.  You can see that I have a rack with toothbrushes, that's because we also practice dental hygiene.  We brush our teeth after every major meal like breakfast, lunch and supper, including me, so they each have their own toothbrush which I provide and keep here.  I sanitize them about every 4 weeks or so and replace them every 6 months ..."

After the tour I ask if they have any questions so far and then I tell them that I would like to go over my policies with them.  I always start off with an explanation about why I have the policies and why they are important.  It may sound something like ...
"I'd like to quickly go over my policies now.  This is important because I conduct my daycare a certain way with certain goals in mind so it's important that my clients understand the policies and my philosophy and agree with them because if not then it isn't going to be a good fit, which is okay... I'm just going to go through them briefly so please stop me if you have a question or need me to clarify it further.  If something doesn't work for you please say so, so that we can discuss it, okay?"

I then give a copy of my handbook to each parent to follow along with me and I just go down my bulleted list and explain in my own words what the policies are.  For me this takes about 15 to 25 minutes depending on how many questions they asked.  I do this because I can't tell you how many times that I or other providers have complained that they gave a new client their policies, which they signed, and still they had issues arise later with the client not following them, not understanding them or simply not reading them.

CAUTION!  No matter how much in need you are for a new client never agree to enroll a client on the spot.  At the end of every interview I let the parent know that I have other interviews scheduled and that I will be in contact with them shortly after making my decision... even if I don't really have another interview ... yes, I know.  Sneaky sneaky.

Give yourself at least 24 hours to think about how the interview went and to mull on it.  Once the excitement and nerves have subsided (and c'mon let's face it, we all get at least a little bit nervous) you may think back and realize there were some "red flags" that might become an issue later, or might find another family that's a better fit.


By the time the interview is over I have a pretty good feeling about whether or not they are still interested in my daycare and whether or not I think they are a good fit.  If I think they'd fit in nicely and if I get an overall good vibe about them then I'll invite them back for a "playdate". 

Client Interviews Part I: That First Phone Call

There's not one way to skin a cat and I for one have asked many providers for a run through of how their interview process works and taken the "best of" (in my opinion) to create my own client interview process.  The goal is to streamline the process so that I can save time but also cover all important topics in an attempt to "weed out" candidates.  My interview process consists of three parts; 
Part I The First Phone Call, Part II The First In-Person Interview and  Part III a Playdate
Here is how I handle calls from potential clients. 

Initial Call

When I get that first initial call from a potential client I have a few things set up beforehand.  The first thing I did was to create a few documents that I could use to help me through the whole interview process like a call-log, a call script, a rate sheet and an in-person log.  These help me keep my interviews in order so that I can keep the details straight.  I keep these all in a simple inexpensive folder that keeps 3-hole punched papers.  I add some page protectors in and slip my documents inside the page protectors so that I can slip then in and out easier if I need to update them and if I want to write notes on them with dry-erase markers.

Phone Interview Call Log

I personalized my call log to include information that I wanted to know when someone made that first contact call to me:
  • Caller's name and contact information as well as date of call
  • How they heard about my daycare
  • Start date, hours of care and days needed
  • Child's name(s), age(s), birthday(s)
  • Current child care arrangement & reason they're looking for child care
  • Parent employer, location (city), work schedule and time worked
  • On government subsidy?
  • Whether they are on another waiting list
  • Whether they have a back-up provider
  • What their expectations are for child care
  • Interview scheduled with room for date and time
  • A section where I can write my own notes
I have this call log in front of me any time that I get a call from someone interested in information about my daycare and because conversations don't always go in order of my call log I jot down information as the caller is giving it to me.  Usually I get most of the information I need without having to ask for it, then I go back and see what information I still need and ask for it. 

Phone Interview Script

Even though I call it a script this is really a checklist of what I need to go over on the phone.  I use the checklist to quickly cover the important aspects of my daycare ... I think of it like my "sales pitch".  I also cover "non-negotiables", which are the things that I provide that I won't under any circumstances make exceptions for.  It's handy so that I don't forget something that may be an issue later. 
  • Availability, type and age range
  • My fees, how I charge, when they're due, accepted forms of payment
  • Hours and location
  • General information such as how I require a contract and handbook, meals, type of program I provide etc.
  • My non-negotiables

Rate Sheet

I personally have no problem sharing my rates over the phone or posting them on my website.  The reason being that I don't want to waste someone's time going through a phone and in-person interview only to find out at the end that they can't afford my rates.  It also saves me my time.
Because I share my rates on the phone I keep a current rate sheet handy for reference.  I have, in fact, misquoted a client and have given a previous rate because I had forgotten that I had raised my rates a few months prior.  Don't ask me how that happened, but it did.  Now I keep a rate sheet so that I don't make that mistake again. 

Invite Them Back

If the child's age and child care schedule fits in with what I can provide I then invite the caller for an in-person interview.

CA Car Safety Seat Law


There seems to be a lot of confusion from providers that I know about the newer California car safety seat laws so here they are, plain and simple.
Children under the age of 8 years old must be properly buckled into a car seat or booster in the back seat.
Children over the age of 8 years old, or who are 4'9" or taller, can use the car's regular seat belt if it fits properly with the lap belt low on the child's hips, touching the upper thighs, and if the shoulder belt crosses the center of the child's chest.  If the child is not tall enough for the seat belt to fit properly then the child must ride in a booster or car seat regardless of the child's age or height. 
Of course everyone in the car must be buckled up properly.  California is getting pretty stiff when it comes to children in cars and for every child that is 16 years old or younger who isn't properly secured in a car, parents (if they are in the car) or drivers can be fined at least $475 per child and get a point on their driver's record. 
Don't get a ticket!  If you transport the children and your clients forget or don't want to leave a car seat or booster with you at daycare you can just go out and buy one to keep for yourself.  Booster seats are as little as $15 now for the backless versions and the high-back booster seats run as little as $20 in some places.  Car seats run more but $100 for a car seat sounds better than $475 and an increase in your car insurance premium. 

Setting Up Recurring Invoices in MMK Pro

Recurring Invoices

Okay so I have to admit, I had a hard time understanding how to set-up recurring invoices in Minute Menu Kids Pro.  After a little snooping around and with the help of a very helpful forum member on the Forum here's the scoop on how to get it to work for you.  

To get to the recurring invoice section in MMK Pro from the main menu:
Accounting>Bill Parent's and Record Payments>Recurring Invoices.

Click on the parent that you want to create a recurring invoice for (sorry, you can only choose one parent for each child) and click the Setup button.  Now choose how often you want to automatically create an invoice (weekly, every other week, monthly, twice per month) and click Next.
*For the purposes of this explanation we will assume that we are creating weekly invoices. 

Here's where it got confusing for me.  The next screen should look like a calendar like shown in the screenshot below.  Near the top it says "What date do you want to start automatically creating invoices?"  This date should be the day before your payment due date for your family.  For example if your payment due date is Friday then the invoice creation date should be on a Thursday. 

Once you set your date the star on the calendar will reflect what date the invoice will be created on and the following day will say "Money Withdrawn from Parent".  Make sure that these days are correct.  The next step is to get the black ribbon with the arrows to reflect the dates that the invoice will cover.  

If you provide child care service first and require payment at the end of the week then you will want to left click on the Sunday before the invoice is created.  Your screen should then look like this:

If you are like me and require payments before you provide child care then you will want to left click on the Sunday following after the invoice is created.  Your screen should then look like this:

The next screen is where you will select the child(ren) you want to apply to this invoice.  You can choose to only add one child or several children (such as siblings) but you can only choose one parent to invoice.  Select the child(ren) and click Next.   If you have filled out the child's information beforehand then the amount to bill weekly will already be filled out.  Check it and make sure it is correct.  This amount will be invoiced each week.  

The last step is where you can add notes.  Whatever you type in this section will show up on all invoices created after this point.  When you are finished you can click Done and that's it!  You are done.  I hope this helps someone as much as it has helped me.