I’m so excited that my first blog guest post was posted today over at Our Mommyhood! You might ask why am I guest writing for a mommy’s blog when I’m not one, well that’s simple, I have a lot of experience as a nanny and wanted to share some advice from a nanny’s point of view! I was lucky enough to be asked by a blogging buddy Liz from A Belle, A Bean, and A Chicago Dog, if I’d write one. I of course jumped at the chance and had fun writing one!
I wrote the article about a month ago, and have been giddy with anticipation ever since! I’ve known for about two weeks the date that my article would be published and it’s been hard waiting so long!
Please pop over and check out what I had to say, what I posted about and ask questions any questions you might have! I’m hoping to get enough questions to do another guest post answering questions about nanny’s and childcare options! So please hop on over and check it out! Don’t forget to come back and tell me what you though!!
Link just to just my guest post … Not Your Typical Childcare
If you have any questions for me, please leave a comment below or email me at email@example.com! If you are interested in having me guest post for you about my experience as a nanny, my experience with multiples (I have experience with twins to quintuplets) or anything else relevant, please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the information!!
[Edited 9/20/10: Added the guest post below for posterity!]
Hi! My name is Cori and I am so excited to be a guest writer, especially because I’m not a mommy! So you may be wondering why am I writing a post for a mommy blog? I’m here to share my story as a nanny, a nanny to triplets at that! There are so many options available for childcare today that often leave parents unsure of what’s best for them, I’m here to try and clear up some confusion and answer any questions you may have. So without, further ado….
My story begins, or at least as a childcare provider, 11 years ago, at the tender age of 13. I was hired as a mother’s helper to 6 month old triplet girls. I went over to my neighbor’s house every Saturday morning for a couple hours to give the parents a break to sleep, run quick errands and get chores done. I started nannying for the triplets every weekday afternoon from 2:15pm-6pm a couple of years later. During that time I learned how much fun it was to care for multiples; there is always, always, always something going on, someone getting in trouble and something to be done! It was through this job that my name started bouncing around the multiples birth circuit and since then I have nannied and/or babysat for 5 sets of twins, 8 sets of triplets, a set of quadruplets and even a set of quintuplets!
The past three years I have spent with a family who has boy/boy/girl triplets and an older sister. I was hired before they were born and helped the family prepare for the arrival of three babies. The babies were born at 33 weeks and I had the amazing opportunity during the month they spent in the NICU to visit them, hold them and spend time with them before they came home a month after their birth. It’s now been three years since those early days and we’re right smack in the middle of potty training (1 down, 2 to go!); fun times at this house!
So now that you know a little about my background, here are some important things to be aware of prior to making a child care decision.
• Nanny: A nanny is no longer only available to the wealthy; they are now becoming an option for many families! A nanny is someone who will come to your home and care for your children in their own environment. There are many different types of nannies, old or young, live-in or live-out and it’s up to the parents to decide what type of nanny is right for their family. Many people hire an older nanny hoping to find someone who has had experience as a mom and can share that with the kids they care for. Whereas a younger nanny may have less experience, but more energy to keep up and more willing to do things “your” way!
The question I get most often is if I ever get “me” time? The answer to that is YES; I am a live-out nanny, I work from 9am-6pm and at 6pm, I’m walking out the door! There are nannies who live-in and have their own personal space with certain hours they work. A live-in nanny normally makes less money in exchange for housing.
Many nannies are asked to also help with housework, laundry and running errands. Different nanny positions I’ve held, I’ve had different responsibilities. With my current job, I keep the kids laundry going, clean up after the kids during the day and try to have the dishes done! Some days I’m better at getting that all done than others!
• Babysitter: A babysitter is the person who most of you all are probably the most familiar with. She is someone who comes over occasionally to watch your kids for a few hours while you and your husband go out for an evening on the town. They come over and play with your children, but normally have no other responsibilities, such as chores, running errands, etc.
• Mothers Helper: What mom doesn’t want some extra help with the kids to get work done? A mother’s helper is the answer to that question. There are many girls (10-13 years old) who want to babysit, but are not old enough to really babysit yet, they would love to come over a couple days a week for a few hours and entertain and play with your kids. I’m not saying leave your kids home alone with the helper, but to give you time to get things done around the house and catch-up! These girls are really excited to help; it’s a great opportunity for the helper and a lot of help for you! I started out as a mother’s helper and learned so much
• Nanny-Share: A nanny share is just as it sounds, you and a friend share a nanny. This is a great option for a family who wants a nanny but may not be able to afford one on their own. You get to have a nanny for half the price. Another plus, is your child(ren) get to grow up with friend!
I wanted to answer a couple of questions I got from my readers on my personal experience as a nanny. If you have any further questions for me, whether about nannying or watching multiples, I’d be happy to answer! Just leave a comment with the question and I’ll address a few of them in my next entry!
• How do you manage time with that many kidlets of the same age?
Ahhhh, time management! With triplets you learn early on that the best thing to do is keep the kids on the same strict schedule. I fed three at once, changed three at once, put three down for a nap at once. As they got older the same scenario is in effect but changes a bit…we do a lot more outings, visit the zoo, children’s museum, story time at the library and park often. We still stick to that schedule pretty closely, just alter as need be! I run the kids ragged in the morning, so when 1pm comes around, its naptime and I get a two hour break to either sit or relax or catch-up on chores. I think people would be surprised to realize that triplets really aren’t that difficult, it just takes organization and routine…oh yes, and doing things three times!
• Do nannies answer honestly if a parent says to them, “How was my child today?”
As a nanny I strive to uphold my duty to my “parents”, to treat and care for their children as they would. I work with the parents to set-up structure, rules and schedules that we can all live with. The most important thing between a nanny and their employer is communication! The more open you are with your childcare provider, the easier it will be for everyone! I am honest with my “parents” and if it’s been a bad day I’ll tell them straight up “Gabbi had a hard day today, she did XYZ and I was frustrated”. This gives the parents a chance to talk to the child and try to resolve the issue. If your nanny just says “the day was fine” you won’t be aware of things and can’t help your children grow and learn from different experiences.
I hope I was able to answer a few of your questions you may have on finding the right childcare for your family! If you have any more questions, please feel free to leave me a comment and I’ll respond back to you right away! Hopefully, I will be able to do a Q&A post in the next few months and answer any more questions you have!