Sunday, September 07, 2008

The "Choosy mom" chooses good babysitters!

Being a military family definitely presents problems when trying to find babysitters. You're the new kid (with kids) in town trying to find a reliable, responsible, affordable, dependable, available sitter just so you can have some time to yourself or with your spouse. NOT an easy task considering we all KNOW it's a sacred thing to NEVER share the name and number of your favorite sitter with anyone! When you find a sitter you love, you keep that information to yourself!

Fortunately for me, my new friend Mellissa did not know that rule and shared with us the name of our first sitter in OKC, Ronnie. LOVE HER! Not because she's adorable, playful and CANADIAN, but because she is genuinely engaging with the kids and the kids love her. That gives us parent PEACE of mind when we leave for the night. Ahhhhh!

However, because my new friend Mellissa does not know the sacred vow of NOT sharing the babysitter with others, she is sharing her with WAY TOO MANY PEOPLE!! So now our most awesomest sitter is not only 16 and with a boyfriend and in high school with social events and extra curriculars to attend, she is also babysitting for the rest of the town! ugh! We completely understand why everyone would love her...we're just bummed.

Combine all of that with the fact that our friend and neighbor Laura (aka Plan B) across the street, is MOVING to Nebraska. Oye! I'm a girl who needs Plan A, B and C. Now my Plans A and B are gone ....and it looks as though I am still in need of a Plan C. What a search I have in front of me!!!

So for a single parent, I mean, military spouse such as myself, the search goes on for the "right" sitter. And just so you know, I don't just hire anyone. There is a process involved here. I get the name of the person from someone. I call them. We set up a meeting. I invite her over to meet me and the boys, and to go over some things. I give her time to spend with the boys to play and get to know each other. I take her home and then we hire her. I do this with all the new sitters. It's a process, like I said. AND I'm faced with having to do it.

I emailed the Student Ministry staff at church this week and asked them if they could put a "babysitter want ad" in their monthly newsletter. I explained my story to them and hoped that maybe they would get the word out and we'd have this outpouring of responses. (fingers crossed)

I also contacted a MOMS Club friend of mine who mentioned MONTHS ago that her step daughter was now of age to babysit and that if I needed her to just call. I hadn't even thought about it until now. So I set up a meeting with her to meet after church today.

I've now got the ball rolling. Hoping that something will come of this.

So this morning, as I was at church my pastor approached me during the meet and greet and introduces HAEDEN to me. The angels sang in their glory as I shook her hand. YAY!!!! A prospective sitter. I met with her mom and dad, introduced myself to them and to Haeden. Explained my story to them and arranged for an "interview" tomorrow at 3pm after school. And get this: SHE HAS HER LICENSE.....yay!!!!

At 1pm Haley comes over and we meet. I introduce myself and the boys to her and boom, they are upstairs playing, within ten minutes of entering the house. (Do you hear the angels again??)
They played for about a half hour and then I went up to quickly discuss a few things. We talked about bedtime routine, discipline, movie nights, snacks, behavior and most importantly availability. She reveals to me: "I'm a bit of a home body" (YAY! YAY! YAY! I shout in my head)
So aside from having to cheer at football games in the fall, she's a home body. MY KINDA sitter.

The boys and she pick up playing again and I then I take her home. She's truly a prospect I can't wait to use! The boys actually cried when she left, which could be hurtful to me or not, but at this point, it's all about her! They love her! I am happy

If my meeting with Haeden goes this well tomorrow, I will have Plan A, Plan B AND a Plan C, which makes mama happy!


Lisa said...

Oh man. BOY do I understand! We are doing okay now- because we are on base and have lots of families to trade baby-sitting with- but I know your pain! I myself baby-sat from age 9 to 18- I earned enough to buy my first car with cash, I kid you not. Good luck with the new gal- she sounds like a jewel!

Sara Kilgore said...

Live in babysitters are the bomb! So glad I don't have to deal with that. Taylor is awesome, everyone she sits for loves her. Too bad we're not in your neighborhood, or town, or state.

Anonymous said...

Taylor had Lyss as her babysitting tutor. No wonder she's awesome.

As for us, we don't have to deal with babysitters because we just never go out. That's not really true. We just never go out without dragging all three hooligans with us. For one thing, I'm back to being a single parent again anyway.* For the other, our ward is SUPER young. There are, like, 3 or 4 teenage girls in the whole congregation. But get this: there are OVER 30 nursery kids (18mo-3yr), with more coming in all the time, and OVER 110 Primary kids (3-12). You could say that competition for babysitters is pretty fierce, but as I said, I don't need to deal with it because

*I'm back to single parenting. Thank you, higher education.

Christy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PaBlanchards said...

I've only had a babysitter once since Mason was born; never since Chase.