30 March, 2015

References and the Law

Hi. I am a 25 year old nanny. I have worked with 2 different families. The last family that I worked with fired me after five months. They told me that they were going to have the children go to an after school program and that the father was going to work mornings from the house. I wasn't upset because I didn't feel it was the best match and when I took the job, I was looking for a $15 an hour job and took a $12 an hour job. I have a resume that reflects a very clean time line. I spent three years working in a daycare/chain preschool. I have a good reference from the first family in writing. I then went back to working at a daycare so I could work a 630-2 shift and have my afternoons free for about five months but I didn't like how that was run, so I left. I have been giving out the last family I worked with as a reference because I knew things weren't great but I know I was good to their kids and reliable. I haven't got any of the jobs that I applied for. I haven't even got a call back. Finally, I called one of the jobs I thought I interviewed well for and asked where they were in the selection process. The woman told me that she had gone with another candidate. I wished her luck and said good-bye. But, she clearly had an ice tone with me. I had my friend call my old job to see what they were saying as a reference. The woman spent three solid minutes on the phone saying that .."we never quite clicked"..."i never felt I could trust her"..."she seemed sneaky"...and "I never knew what was true or not".. There was more but that was the line of her talk. No wonder I didn't get the job. Are nanny employers allowed to say all of that, even if it is true? I know companies don't want to be liable so they can only confirm the dates of employment and the reason that a person leaves the company. I don't know why my last employers would say this. It's very mean and dehumanizing and makes me very sad and upset. I think all I can do now is use a fake reference or I am never going to find a job. I took my add off of Care.com and Sitter City because I was afraid she would find me an slander me.
-*edited for content, Gianluca

Spring Break Bust

I have been working for this family for two months. Last week was Spring Break. The single mom I work for was out of town for two nights and three days. She forgot to leave the credit card for house use so I used my own cash, as I have before to pay for household or kid's needs. She had told me to "find some fun stuff to do with them". So for the week, we went to see Cinderella, went to to ride Go Karts, went to lunch out at a barbecue place and did a host of other non cost things. I left the bill with her on Friday. This morning, she left me a reimbursement check. It was minus $38.75. She wrote, "Annie, I'm not paying for you to see movies and go out to dinner". I am so PISSED off. Her children are 6 & 10.  I really want to quit over this!

Want to share your dilemma with I Saw Your Nanny? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

29 March, 2015

A Day in the Life 2015, #1

On Monday morning, the parents leave in a rush. Polite good-yes are said. A list is usually left. I feed the children and get them ready for the day. One will be getting on the bus, one staying home with me all day.
     7:30 The older child refuses to eat anything except French Toast Crunch. The box of French Toast Crunch is in the garbage. Dad has finished eating it. I offer bazillion compromises. Finally, she agrees on cinnamon toast. That being white bread, toasted with butter, sugar and cinnamon on it. I serve it to her. She screams for more sugar. She refuses to eat it. Her two year old brother gets it.
     7:45 I am looking everywhere for her purple rhinestone sweater. It is nowhere to be seen and it is the only thing she will wear. I find it in the washing machine, clumped together with a bunch of spun out clothes that have been sitting for who knows how long. I throw it in the dryer with a towel and try to help her brush her hair and teeth.
    7:55 The two year old has sprinkled cinnamon all over his hands. It's even under his nose. I wonder if inhaling cinnamon is a bad thing.
     8:00 the sweater isn't dry but I pull it out and blow dry it until 8:05. I give it to the girl who only agrees to brush her hair and teeth once she has the sweater on. We make it to the bus in time for another parent to see us running and halt the bus. She gets on bus and I am relieved.
     8:10 I am back in the kitchen cleaning up the breakfast mess made by the kids and the parents. I am washing the coffee pot and wiping down counters. There are two pots "soaking" in the sink. I wash these two. I empty the dishwasher. I refill the dishwasher. I empty the trash.
     8:30 The two year old and I are making craft things out of different kinds of play dough and modeling dough. We are working on a mobile to hang high above his big boy bed. We shape motorcyles out of dough and stick twine through it and bake it in the oven.
     9:30 I put on PBS for the boy and make myself a smoothie. I don't sit down. I have to run around to girl and boy's room, make their beds and pick up their scattered toys, cups and shoes. I start a fresh load of laundry. The two year old's bed has a dried wet spot on it, probably from the weekend. I can leave it, but I don't. I strip the bed, even though I am almost done making it and process this laundry.
     11:00 Two nannies I have met through the park come over with their similarly aged children. They are Jamaican and know each other. They are friendly enough but regard me with suspicion. They both ask for tea. I serve them tea. They are sitting and I go to sit on the floor with the kids when one asks if I have anything to go with the tea. I get up and go to the pantry and select some fig newtons and Ritz crackers. The hour passes slowly. They want to ask how much I make. I say "I prefer not to discuss salary". They both raise their eyebrows at me and exhange knowing looks.  I tell them, "I am so glad you could come over today. The winter has been hard on "Two year old". They agree. One tells me, "My boss don't want nobody in her house. She prefer we are out all day". I feel for her. I try to get the kids to pick up the toys that are scattered in every direction, One nanny gets up to help, the other nanny looks at me with disdain. (?)
     12:30 They leave and I sit down to have a causal lunch of blueberries, cheese and macaroni salad with my two year old. I make a grocery list as we eat, noticing key foods are missing from the refrigerator and pantry. I love that his eyelids are getting heavy and about to close.After lunch, I lay him down on the guest bed so I can remake his bed. I wash more laundry fold it. I wash out his potty seat, I am trying to potty train him. I cut up fresh vegetables, strawberries and cantaloupe. I lay ou tonight's pajamas on each child's made bed with a fresh towel and wash cloth.  In the bathroom, I  place down the bathmat, ready the children's toothbrushes and wipe down their sink and vanity. I sweep the kitchen and vacuum the playroom.
     2:00 The child is woken up by me because Mom doesn't want him to sleep more than an hour a day. He is tired and cranky. This is his worst hour. I get into my secret stash of strawberry milk and ply him with that and apple with peanut butter. Slowly he comes around. I must now bundle us both up and run to the drugstore to pick up a prescription and to pick up the drycleaning. In the car, the gas in the nanny vehicle is on negative. I have not been left any cash. The drycleaning is billed and the prescription is fully covered. I use $5 of my own money and pump the gas in the car, reminding myself to get a receipt. I look at the time and hurry from the station. One my way pulling in the garage, I realize I forgot a receipt.
     3:10 We are waiting bundled at the bus stop. It is freezing. 2 year old is crying because he is cold. The bus comes, big sister gets off the bus in a happy mood. We walk home, she skipping all the way.
     3:20 She asks for oreos. I tell her there are no oreos. I offer her a fig newton. She gets mad. She refuses to do her homework. I get out the strawberries and some marshmallows and put them together with toothpicks in cute designs to appease her.
     3:40 Brother is screaming to be picked up, changed and then for Barney. During this time I help big sister with her homework. I pull out the notes from the backpack that the parents need to see and organize them. She needs a certain amount of money for photos. I fill out the photo form with the information I have, put it with a blank envelope and leave it for the parents.
     4:00 We are playing with Monster High Dolls in the basement. Two year old is ramming cars together. My head is pounding. Two more hours, I tell myself. At 5:30, I take the kids upstairs and let big sister use her ipad for 1/2 hour and mark this on the screen time calendar. I set up a train for little bro to play with. I set the table for four. I fill a pitcher of water with ice and water. I make a fresh salad and set dressings and croutons on the table.  Ten more minutes... I tell myself.
     6:05 Mom calls, she missed her train and will be on the next one. Can I put the chicken in the pan? Sure I can. But it's not just put it in the pan. She wants it in the pan with this spice and that on it, some porcini mushrooms and x,y,z.  I do this and play cards with the daughter. Mom calls as she is getting off the train and asks me to put some water on to bowl some linguini. I am happy because I know she is now 7 minutes away. She tells me she is going to stop for bread. She is home in 30 minutes with bread, wine, desert and a Hallmark bag.
     7:16 As I am ready to leave, she looks in the sink and says, "Oy you cooked the pasta already?" in a dissatisfied tone. "Yes," I say, "The kids were getting hungry". "It's not like they're gonna starve to death she says in a haughty tone.
     7:25 I am sitting in my personal vehicle ready to pull away from the house. I have worked an hour and a half extra and will never see that money. I debate whether I should show up late, even by two minutes to make a point, but realize it isn't worth the hassle. I swear to myself that this will be my last year of nannying. Before I drive off, I text her, "Had to put $5 of my own in car for errands, please leave # for tomorrow. Have a great night".
      That's How I roll.
       *Author is a live-out nanny in Scarsdale, NY making $800 per week for the hours of 730-600. She has been with the family for 14 months.

Want to share details of your job with our readers? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

28 March, 2015

The Regifter

My birthday was on Friday and my employers gave me a really nice jacket. It still had the tags on and everything, but was too tight to wear comfortably over winter layers. I took it back to a nice department store today to exchange it for the next size up. The didn't carry the jacket in the store. Because I could not do an even exchange, I sought to return it. Without a receipt I was okay to take store credit. I know that the jacket is a higher priced item, based on the brand. I waited for awhile while they looked up numbers and called a manager. Then they came back and told me they haven't sold that item in the store for at least two years. So now I am hurt and out of a birthday gift from a family that I thought really liked me. It feels now like she grabbed something from her closet that she had never worn, when before I imagined she had selected it with thought. Is there any way to address this with the family? I think I either have to wear it snug or trade it at a high end resale boutique, which I am guessing I would get at best $50.  Do I say nothing to the employers? I have to admit that I think the damage is done. I have been with them for 4 months. I know that is not a long time, but two of the family have had a birthday during that time and I got them each a thoughtful gift. PS My gut says just let it go, but it is really affecting how I feel about myself, especially since I worked for the family right before the Holidays and while I didn't get a gift, I helped her wrap some really nice gifts for teachers, fitness instructors, even the housekeeper. :(  The store clerks were nice and said if I could bring the receipt in they would offer the return, but they have no idea what the item even sold for before it was phased out.

Would you like to share your experience? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

27 March, 2015

Greenwich Library in Greenwich, CT

I want to report a bad nanny that I see regularly at the library on Putnam Avenue. I can tell you she does not drive so she must live with in a reasonable walking distance. She is always pushing the child in a black and silver stroller with three wheels and a black canopy.  Her charge is a boy who is about 3. He is very physical and likes to be out of the stroller. She doesn't sign up for the children's activities but I have seen her there while they are going on. She doesn't keep a good eye on the child. She is often on her phone texting. Her phone has rang during the time she was inside. After getting looks about answering her phone, she left down a hall, leaving, without contact her charge for about 5 minutes. He is a well behaved kid, so that isn't the problem. The problem is to assume it is safe to leave such a young child unsupervised.  The reason I decided to make mention  of this is because on Tuesday, I saw her again with her charge. He was looking at books and walking around, much like he always does. I mean they are clearly killing time here, she doesn't engage him with books or anything. So he says he has to go to the bathroom.  She says, "you know what to do now, you're a big boy" and with that she lets him go in the bathroom by himself. The boy's bathroom. I was shocked. This was all done quietly and the kid came out okay, but he is very young to be going alone to the bathroom, let alone to a men's bathroom where other men's genitalia could be on display. I don't understand the set up with this nanny and why she has a job. Unless the child asks her a question she doesn't talk to him at all. She does ply him with candy I noticed her giving him twizzler bits and sour patch candies. And other things like that.  I've seen her off the Avenue coming and going on Benedict, so the family lives in that direction.
Send your nanny sightings to isynblog@gmail.com

Trying to formulate a letter that doesn't mince words...

I work as a live out nanny in a building on the Upper West Side of NYC. I have seen the nanny of another tenant with her charge in the building at at a nearby cafe and a park. The nanny behaves in such a way to the child in public that I would be really worried about how she treated the little guy when she was alone. One thing I did see was her grab the crying child's face tightly while crying and say, "you will stop that crying". If you could see how rough she was with him or the look on her face, you would understand my concern. I said to her, "I see you're having a rough day.." She cut me off and said, "what do you see, what do you see". I tried to say something like "i just noticed" and she kept mocking me and saying, "what do you see, what do you see. Yeah that's right..you saw nothing. That's what you saw." I was intimidated. That was two months ago. I didn't do anything. I have managed to find out who she works for and her employer is known as "obnoxious" and "narcissistic" and "a real bitch."  Today I saw them coming in from the outdoors and she told him to move his hands, when he did not, she intentionally rammed his fingers in to the door frame, really hard. I did not say anything or make eye contact with her but I had a very good vantage point to see her malice and how intentional this was. So I have been thinking what is the best way to handle this? I can't give a note to the doorman because if the employer demanded to know who gave it to him, he would tell her. His job is to wait on their type, not mine. So I was thinking the best thing to do is to send her a letter by US Mail now that I know her first and last name. I don't want this traced back to me and I don't want her to ignore it. Any advice on the wording I should use to emphasize that I have a true concern for how her child (a boy of 19 months) is treated by his nanny.

Looking for advice? Email isynblog@gmail.com. We're also looking for Bad Childcare Ads, Nanny Horror Stories, Nightmare Employer and Day in the Life submissions. 

26 March, 2015

New York Post Article Seeking input from ISYN & readers

Dear NYC area moms,
 For a (hopefully) fabulous article, I'm looking for stories - you can talk to me anonymously if you prefer - about NANNIES and BABY NURSES (not casual evening babysitters) who've made lots of demands/behaved like divas in their jobs. Maybe they frequently asked for pay rises/lazed around/took advantage by being absent a lot/demanded hand-rolled sushi for lunch (!), that kind of thing. Call it a story that's the flip side to "The Nanny Diaries" told from the parents' point of view. Please contact me on the below email anyone with interesting anecdotes as soon as humanly possible. Waiting patiently on your/their input at jridley@nypost.com.

25 March, 2015

Why is it so hard to pay a nanny for the hours she works?

I have been with a wonderful family since the baby was 5 months ( just over a year now). We just had his first birthday party and I was in charge if the kids position of the party. So I had to come with crafts, games, etc. We are hosting an Easter Party and again in charge of kids position of party. I am reimbursed for everything I buy for the parties; but not getting paid to work? These parties are on weekends that are suppose to be my day off.   Help!?

Have a a situation, dilemma or sighting? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

Check out Guests at Child's Birthday Party Attack Chuck E. Cheese Workers.

How to Get Along with your Nanny

  • Have a written job description. Nanny Network outlines different things you might want to include when you write a job description for your nanny.
  • Outline your nanny role. The Nanny Doctor explains the importance of being clear about your expectations and how you want things done. Be sure to explain any pet peeves you may have, so your nanny is able to avoid them.
  • Screen your caregiver. According to Childcare About, you should ask a lot of questions when you screen potential nannies and check all of the references you’re given.
  • Hire the right person. Finding the perfect caregiver is tough; Huffington Post encourages employers to ask plenty of questions to make sure the nanny is right for both your child and for you.
  • Observe wage laws. The Law reviews all of the wage law details you will need to know when hiring a nanny.
  • Comply with tax laws. Parents explains how you can get in trouble by not paying taxes.
  • Have a work agreement in writing. You can find suggestions about what to include in a family/nanny work agreement on eNannysource.
  • Remember there is a honeymoon period. Keep in mind that your nanny will be trying to make a good impression in the beginning; if you find that you don’t like something she is
    Am fits available the viagra website quality facials generic levitra Blue work bulk: had pharmacy online stuff-, any – generic viagra product or: without cheap viagra purchase within – conditioning finish pharmacy online daughter’s and old. Because viagra cost it’s mention lavender to female viagra apply burst is of cialis provide scratchy and cialis pill for Nexxus high-fiber s less-expensive sildenafil 100mg need this looking – greasy creme – http://www.myrxscript.com/no-prescription-pharmacy.php louts that the.
    doing, I Saw Your Nanny suggests discussing it with her openly.
  • Encourage communication. Make time to talk to your nanny and ask how things are going, saysKate Spenser.
  • Have your nanny keep a journal. A daily journal allows you to stay up to date on what your kids are doing and gives your nanny a place to write down any questions or concerns she has, explainsOptimom.
  • Hold weekly touch base meetings. Nanny Insider points out that including weekly or monthly meetings in your work contract helps everyone stay on the same page.
  • Show gratitude. Parents Nanny Voice suggests telling your nanny when she is doing a good job to build a strong relationship with her.
  • Address any issues as they come up. The New York Times reports that strong women have trouble communicating with their nanny. It’s important that you tell your nanny if there is a problem.
  • Come home on time. Respect your nanny’s time and call ahead of time if you are going to be late.Park Slope Parents also suggests keeping timesheets so that everyone knows the hours worked.
  • Avoid job creep. Nanny Biz explains job creep, which is when an employer asks for a favor and then the task becomes an expected part of the job. If you need your nanny’s job responsibilities to change, discuss updating your work agreement with her.
  • Tell your nanny thank you. The Parent Guru warns that nannies who don’t feel appreciated may start looking for another job. Showing gratitude and saying thank you can be very different, and both are appreciated.
  • Encourage the nanny/child relationship. Forbes explains that it’s better for the child if both the mother and nanny can encourage a trusting relationship between the nanny and child.
  • Deal with jealously on your own time. Global Post points out that nannies and their chargers have to bond to have trust; don’t take it personally.
  • Have boundaries. Whether you have a live-in or live-out nanny, boundaries are important;Cambridge Nanny Group recommends discussing both your boundaries and hers.
  • Be professional. As a boss, you need to speak to your nanny in a pleasant manner and treat her as a professional, says Babble. It’s easy for relationship lines to blur when the caregiver is living in the home.
  • Be respectful of your nanny’s time off. Part-time Nanny points out that your nanny needs down time too; she is more likely to do her job well when she is well rested.
  • Don’t add extra duties without discussing extra pay. Always be up front about any added duties so your nanny doesn’t feel like you are taking advantage of her, recommends Aunt Emma.
  • Avoid changing your nanny’s schedule without asking. Parent Talk urges parents to talk to their nanny as soon as they know a schedule change will be happening to show you respect her personal time.
  • Don’t raise your voice to your nanny. Baby Zone points out that respecting your nanny is your number one tool for creating a good relationship, so treat your nanny as you would want to be treated at work.
  • Pay your nanny on time and a fair wage. Yahoo Shine explains that you typically get what you pay for, so if you want someone with a degree you had better be prepared to pay better than minimum wage.
  • Round up on your nanny’s paycheck. If your nanny works over by half an hour, you may want to consider rounding up to an hour, suggests The Nanny Web. Little things that you do will come back to you in a happier nanny.
  • Give your nanny an annual review. Go Nannies recommends giving your nanny an annual review to discuss what she’s doing well and where she can improve.
  • Talk to your nanny about changing rules. It’s important to change the contract that you have with your nanny if you will be changing her job responsibilities or the house rules, according to Black, White and Grey.
  • Back up your nanny’s discipline. You need to back up your nanny’s disciplinary actions to help reinforce her role in the household, says Discipline.
  • Provide paid sick time and holidays. Offering paid time off for illness and holidays is a smart way to create a positive relationship with your nanny, according to Club Mom.
  • Reward her at the end of the year with a bonus. While you are not required to give your nanny a bonus, it is one way to strengthen the relationship, advises Homework Solutions.
  • Trust that your nanny knows her job. Nannies typically come to the job with a lot of experience and training; Cambridge Nanny Group explains that you can trust your nanny’s skills.
  • Recognize the nanny’s big events. Nanny recognition week is in September, according toRegarding Nannies; it would be a nice gesture to do something sweet for your nanny during this week or for other big events she celebrates.
  • Remember the nanny’s birthday. Reason for God points out that you should give your nanny gifts every so often, such as on her birthday.
  • Make sure the rules are clearly explained. Setting ground rules with your nanny can ensure that everyone is on the same page, explains Self Growth.
  • Offer medical insurance as a job perk. If you want to keep your nanny, Mommy Bites says to consider offering health insurance.
  • Give your nanny guaranteed hours. Nanny Biz explains how guaranteed hours work and why it’s so important that you pay your nanny for them, whether you need her or not.
  • Provide professional development classes. If your nanny is willing to take classes to improve in her job, like those offered by Project Bond, it would be a nice gesture to pay for them.
  • Help your nanny stay organized. If you have several people that need to be aware of upcoming events, use a digital or physical calendar to keep everyone in the loop, says The Charlotte Observer.
  • Listen to your nanny’s ideas. Nannies are often well-educated about children, and you will make her day by asking for her advice or using her ideas, say My Majors.
  • Don’t drag your nanny into your personal issues. Putting the nanny in the middle of marital issues can make everyone uncomfortable, warns The Guardian. Keep your private life private and expect your nanny to do the same.
  • Try not to take advantage of your nanny. Ganz World urges parents to avoid asking for a bunch of favors without adequate compensation. Your nanny wants to please you and will pitch in where she can, but don’t make a habit of it.
  • Maintain a pleasant relationship, but avoid being too personal. Wall Street Journal points out that you are the employer, not your nanny’s mom or best friend, and it’s important to maintain those boundaries no matter how much you like her.
  • Don’t use a nanny cam. Using a hidden camera to spy on your nanny could damage your nanny relationship beyond repair, explains Top Ten Reviews.
  • Be consistent with dietary rules. If the rule is no sugar, then neither the parents nor the nanny should give the child sugar, says She Knows.
  • Have realistic expectations. Buckingham Nannies and Domestics explains the importance of ensuring your nanny isn’t overwhelmed. Try not to stretch her too thin.
  • Help your nanny adjust to the job. Superpages reminds parents to give a new nanny time to adjust to her new role.
  • Get to know your nanny. Taking time to get to know your nanny is especially important if she is from a different country, advises Super Nannies. How she reacts or communicates may differ from how you do.
  • Do not reprimand the nanny or question her in front of the kids. Nanny Robina suggests keeping your tone neutral if an incident occurs and you need to ask her questions about it. Get all of the facts before you correct something the nanny has done.
  • Don’t micromanage your nanny. Your nanny knows her business – otherwise you wouldn’t have hired her. Unnecessary Wisdom says to let her do her job.

"They don't want to pay me"

Hi. I started a job six months ago and on my end, everything is going well. I have rolled with the things they have thrown at me, like being late or adding in a few non nanny duties. The family went away at Christmas and I was paid my regular week. The mom told me that they are going away the first week of May and the second week of June and I should 'start putting feelers out' for some work during that time. When I looked at her confused, she said, "well we never intended to pay more than one week of vacation per year." This is not my vacation time! How do I make her understand she has a responsibility to me? I am paid off the books and by the week. I don't want to look for filler work, should I really be expected to?

24 March, 2015

Eli's on 3rd & 80th in NYC

Location: Eli's 
Description of Nanny: Puerto Rican woman, wearing jeans, black tennis shoes and a yellow fleece jacket with running/reflector strips on the shoulder.
Description of Child: White girl, about 2 years old, blonde straight shoulder length hair.
I Saw Your Nanny at Eli's this morning just after 10. She was with your daughter wearing a pink & brown plaid coat, blue jeans and a sucking on a green binkie. The nanny was picking out fruit and very rough with the little girl who had her hands help up asking the nanny to pick her up. The nanny slapped her hands away once. After the nanny grabbed some apples and fruit, she walked over to the olive area and grabbed a handful of olives, with her bare hand.  I didn't like how she treated the child. Outside, she stuffed her into tangerine canopied umbrella stroller that was being guarded by a black male of about 25. I could not get a picture inside and once outside there were too many people.

Please send your nanny sightings, good & bad to isynblog@gmail.com.

Reader Input Sought

Send your nanny sightings, stories & suggestions to isynblog@gmail.com.
Description of Nanny/Sitter: (photo preferred)
Description of Child/Children:
All submissions to I SAW YOUR NANNY are confidential.

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23 March, 2015

The Nanny with the Very Difficult Situation

     I want to leave my current position and get another nanny position. I have been here almost a full year and dealt with all kinds of things. I am very bonded to the daughter and I have tried to work with the family to resolve some things. When I brought these things to the family's attention, they behaved punitively towards me, shutting me out, not talking to me for awhile, being curt, etc. The problem has been the behavior of the five year old boy. The behavior has me in a very difficult position because I am from Ireland and this is my first nanny job and I need a reference. I have references from Ireland for nursey, but you can see why I would need their reference. The problem with getting a reference is not going to be my job performance, but that I will need to make some sort of formal report about the child before I leave because his sister is just not safe so long as the family continues to ignore his behavior problems.
     A handful of examples I will give you, he put sewing pins in the dog's bed in his crate and shut the dog in there to "see what would happen", he poured his sister a glass of orange juice and a glass of purple colored household cleaner in side by side glasses and challenged her to a taste test. Here, he said, he wasn't really going to let her drink, he just wanted to see what she chose. The family has a gas stove and he plays with the knobs, usually only when I am cooking, to shut things off or turn things higher, but as you can imagine, this could be deadly.
     He also takes very dangerous risks with his own behavior, sliding down a banister, hanging over the upstairs banister, tying a rope from a downstairs door to an upstairs door and trying to hand slide down it. Just to be clear, the reason I am leaving is because since coming to work here, I have had so much anxiety and am always on edge. When I go home, I am worried about the younger child. The parents do not take anything I say seriously. I am an outsider in this community and don't know who I would approach for help, so I have been advised that I should make a phone call to Children's Services. I don't have any problem doing this and using my identity, because the parents do not want to deal with their son's issues. They are both extremely detached from both children. My question to you is how do I time this? I am alone in the US and have one roommate. She has become a friend but is a roommate first so she has no friendly loyalties to me to help me should I become short on rent. I want to extricate myself from this situation and know that both children will get the help they need, but that I have my reputation intact and another job to switch to. Has anyone ever been in such a situation?

22 March, 2015

Warning- Beware of Stay at Home Moms

    I was like you once. I thought a stay at home Mom gig sounded appealing, maybe even easier, after all as my boss said, we would share in the child rearing activities. I verified everything before I started, even spoke with her current nanny. I am telling you that having worked for a stay at home mom for the past seven months, I want to kill her on a daily basis.

So, I write this for you, the optimist who might be considering taking one of these shitacular jobs.
If you do, clarify:
1)Who prepares the children's meals?  I was told that she loved to cook and did most of the cooking, but warned I would need to prepare my own meals. Sounded fair to me. However in the time that I have worked here, I think I have seen her make a fruit salad and a cheesecake. Not only am I cooking three meals a day for the children, but I find myself cooking entire meals for the family. A family of five.
2) Ask your boss to define child rearing or childcare.? In seriously think she believes child rearing means being within 200 feet of her child, which coincidentally is just the amount of space needed to fuck up any plans or fun I have created.
3) Assess her physical health. My employer would take to her bed at least two afternoons per week. From there, she would summon me to bring her tea, the mail, even a child upon request.
4) Speaking with the still employed soon to be former nanny should never be considered a remedy for obtaining factual information. Assume that nanny is under duress, that her severance or her first born's child depends on getting a warm body in to replace hers.
5) Look for exact words and clarification.
    A) I asked, "who does the laundry?" She said, "we have everything drycleaned, the bedding doesn't fit in the washers and the clothes are too expensive to risk ruining. I might ask you to throw in a load of towels, but I'll let you in on a secret, 'I love doing laundry'. Yes, she said all that. I don't know that I have ever seen her in the laundry room. I do know that her husband's clothing is taken to the drycleaners, see 6. I can also tell you that for seven months, I have laundered every item of clothing each child has worn along with sheets and bedding from all of their beds and any towels that end up in the wash.
   B) "I have a girl who comes in once a week and does the heavy stuff". Sounds good, right? Well, the heavy stuff starts with her bathroom and bedroom, laundering her bedding, making her bed and doing all of her laundry. For the rest of the time, which leaves about an hour, she quickly cleans the two other bathrooms and mops the kitchen floor. Define who "the girl" is and what "the girl" is responsible for. Figure it like this. What needs to be done - What 'the girl' does = what is left for you to do.
6) During the interview, my boss told me, "I am lucky to be able to stay home with my children. I love being able to dote on and take care of my children and my husband." The doting she did must have been after hours only, but I'm guessing not given the look of perpetual disdain on his face. She could never remember to drop his drycleaning off or pick it up. If he needed a battery changed in a watch, a piece of technology repaired or a gift for his secretary. It was me. I did it. When it came time to make Father's Day gift, who was pushing sticky hands in cement filled pie pans? Not her. All me. And the "girl" would always start a load of his clothes as she went out. This meant that his t-shirts, socks and boxers were left in the washer to go in the dryer. The first time, she innocently asked if I would pop them in the dryer. And then, it became my job.
7) However, it was of tantamount importance that the Mr. never know that the Mrs. didn't do anything all day long. In the afternoon, she would have me, prepare her husbands smoothy contents in a baggie, so in the morning as she sent him out the door, he could see her frappingit up in the blender. All she did was dump it from the baggie into the blender and push play. Also, whether it was pork loin or baked chicken, for all he knows, it is she that makes it. The plus from this is I am always excused before he comes home so there are no awkward conversations.
  8) Other SAHMs. Avoid them like the plague. Those that I spoke to for more than a minute asked if I could babysit or complimented me on my skill. That caused my boss's blood to boil.  On that note, make sure you let them know that YOU WILL take other jobs as you feel necessary. Your finances are your business. When people in the building or known to my employer asked me to work, she forbade me. Yes, you read that right. She "wasn't comfortable with that arrangement."
  9) When you answer the phone, which you invariably will, make sure you answer by saying, "X residence, nanny speaking". Anything else is a fail. Anytime her sister, her best friend or the teacher mistook me for her when I answered the phone, she became peeved. Exhausted by my very presence.
10) If you live in their home and take care of the children, if you make them dinner and bake cookies with them and read them stories and teach them to dance, then DO NOT buy them a cool birthday or Hanukkah Present. Because, that is the one thing she will not allow. I bought one of my charges a really cool wooden doll house to go with people and play furniture she had. It disappeared. Yes, after my boss saw how much my charge loved the dollhouse and rushed to decorate it and fill it with furniture, my boss gave it away. And not just the dollhouse. All of her little people and little vehicle and animals and furniture too. Then she has the nerve to tell me, only one week later when I asked about it, "oh that took up so much space and X was not into it".
11) If you go to work for a SAHM who does not take care of her home, her children or her husband, do not smile excitedly when she talks about getting a puppy. Yes, for the past three months, I have walked and mopped up after a precious little puppy. I have taken her to the groomers and the Vet. Did I mention that I live in NY and this winter has been awful? And I am the one who takes the dog out?
Leah is a belly dancer, runner and nanny in Northern New Jersey.
*This content has not been edited.-Gianluca, ISYN
 If you would like to share your own experiences or opinions, email isynblog@gmail.com.

21 March, 2015

Germs and Nanny Illness...

     I started out with the intent to be a great employer. But to be an employer, I need to have a job. And I didn't rise in the ranks of my field by missing important meetings and failing to show up for work. I am on third nanny in three years. This time, I went with a live-in, just so I could be sure that I would not be late or missing meetings. I also imagined that I would see less sick days. I know that working with two small children who do play groups with many other children does bring my nanny in to contact with lots of germs. What I want to know is how healthy does the average nanny feel she needs to be to work? I understand that the nanny may not feel well, but I don't understand her calling in from her bedroom or leaving a note on my kitchen counter saying that she is too ill to work. Most of the time, she will cite that she picked up something from one of the kids. I do not doubt that but neither child has had to go to the doctor for any illness all winter.
     I live in New Jersey and I don't have any prospects for emergency child care. My nanny started work on 9/29. She missed one day in October, two days in December, 1 day in January, day, plus 1/2 day in February; when she called me and said she wasn't going to "make it" through the afternoon. On Friday, I came out to the kitchen at 6 in the morning and she had left a note. "I was up all night with chills and can't work today. I feel rotten and am going to try to get in to my own Dr." All of these sick days are paid. I am a single mother, wholly supporting my children and our lifestyle. I want to address this in the firmest of ways and may even let her go, but how do I make sure that I don't run in to this situation again? I take the train to work every day. That means, if my nanny is late, I miss a train and am delayed 40 minutes or more. I need a nanny who is punctual and who will work through a cold, chills, even a bout of diarrhea or a slight fever. Does this seem unreasonable? How do other mother's handle this?
Send your story, sighting or rant to isynblog@gmail.com

20 March, 2015

Care.com not so Careful?

By Lillian Shupe | Hunterdon County Democrat
A Hunterdon County family has filed a complaint with the American Arbitration Association after a nanny they hired through Care.com allegedly stole from them to support a drug habit.

According to the complaint, the family used Care.com to secure a nanny for their 5-year-old twins, assuming candidates had been pre-screened as the company's advertisements indicated.

After the new nanny came to their home, the family soon discovered she had a heroin addiction and a prior arrest record. While caring for the children, the new nanny, Ann Guadagnino allegedly stole thousands of dollars in jewelry to support that heroin habit, according to the complaint.

The family's filing alleges Care.com failed to discover the new nanny's criminal background in its screening and that contrary to glowing advertisements about finding the perfect caregiver and happy mothers, there are serious problems in the screening of prospective applicants by Care.com. It alleges that those hired may pose profound dangers to the children in their care, something working mothers evaluating such services must know. The arbitration filing alleges a company employee acknowledged that the criminal database used to cross check applicants could be incomplete and out of date in certain aspects.

Prior complaints were uncovered where the company acknowledged potential shortcomings in its own program, according to the complaint: "There is no centralized database encompassing all criminal convictions, charges, arrests, and violations across Federal, state and local lines. Additionally, online databases that are used to perform these checks may only be updated periodically, therefore, sometimes missing or omitting recent criminal record charges. Read the full story here.

Nanny or Personal Assistant?

Hi, I have been working as a nanny for almost 5 years. I know a few personal assistants in the area and they do basically the same job I do, but get paid at least $5/hour more. My charges are now in school for the better part of the day and old enough that they don't need "nanny care" but they do need someone to keep their lives organized, get them to activities, etc. I am writing because I wanted to propose this to my boss in a way that proves beneficial to her. This is the note she left me today. She's a good employer. I think I could make her life easier. My hours now are from 7-6, M-F. I get the kids off to school and then I have one home at 1230 and two home at 3 & 330.  Has anyone ever made the bridge before? I am enclosing today's note because I think it shows that she would be receptive to it. I just want to make sure to politely articulate the pay difference. $16 an hour now and I would like to make at least $22.

Should I stay or should I go?

     So I just got a nanny job in a new state because I was dying for a fresh start.

     I  haven't even been here a month and things have already hit the fan. I was told I would make $10/hour for four boys (crazy low, but I am live in.) But when I got here, I only got $150 for well over 15 hours of work. Now, she said since I got a part time job (which she encouraged me to do) that I'll make only $100 a week, which I had to negotiate! I'm super tired from work but am still expected to make dinner and clean the hour during my off hours. I'm only scheduled to work for her 6 days a week from 7pm-9pm, but here I am woken up by the kids at 9am because the mom and her boyfriend didn't want to deal with them! What do I do? I love not having to pay rent because I know Denver can get kinda pricey, but I can't stand obviously being taken advantage of!
 -Denver Damsel in Distress
Send your questions, stories, sightings and pictures to isynblog@gmail.com.

19 March, 2015

Agressive Nanny at the Children's Museum of Manhattan

Location: Children's Museum of Manhattan
Date/Time: Weds. 3/18 at approx 4:45 PM
Description of Nanny: See photo
Incident: Your nanny there with your daughter   I was there with my 2 year old son. He accidentally bumped into a little girl (probably about 1 year old) and the nanny grabbed his shoulder and armpit and pushed him away and against a wall.  He cried out in pain.  I confronted the woman and she said a few words and then basically ran off away.  I wanted to circulate this story in the hopes of finding the mother of the child.  If it were me, and my nanny pushed or, let alone, touched another child aggressively, I would want to know. Please let me know if any of you recognize this woman.
*The author of this submission has provided an email address for the parents to contact her. 

Nanny Dreading New Additions...

My boss told me today that she is expecting not one, but two babies in September. She seems very happy and I feigned happiness too, but to be honest, I was not looking forward to one baby and the prospect of two fills me with anything but delight. This will be my second summer with the family and summer is my favorite time. We spend a lot of time out in the Hamptons and spend two weeks up in Maine. Part of my wants to be honest now and tell her that I am dreading the future with TWO babies, but I don't want to lose my endless summer. There is also the chance that I might change my mind.  I take care of one 4 year old now. She never mentioned a change in pay or anything, although I am curious. I know that right now, I make $1100 a week for 55 hours with one child who is in school for 3 hours per day. My other fear is that she thinks I make plenty enough to accomodate her new children, and I also wonder how hard it is going to be for me to get a comparable job with benefits, travel and a high salary. I am in the NYC area.