Wednesday

Mom Concerned Her Daughter is More Than Crushing on Employer

Newton
    I came across this website googling information. Maybe this is common, maybe not. I have a beautiful, kind daughter who left SLC to become a nanny three years ago. She worked for one family for a solid two years. After that job was over, she took a job in the city for a newly divorced couple. The couple has shared custody, every other week the kids go to her house or his and my daughter, as a live-in goes with them.

     The father has a grander place, so she is a more permanent room there, more comfortable and spacious, so she lives there predominately when not working. I have never met these people, but I have researched them online and they seem like respectable people.

     My problem is in the letters and emails my daughter has been sending home. It was apparent near immediately that she found the father attractive and may have had a crush on him. Over the past month, the way that she talks about him and the children doesn't sound like a job at all. It sounds like she is his wife. My daughter is lovely and kind, but?

     I don't know if this is infatuation. I also don't know if the father is encouraging in on some level.It is not that I don't think he would be interested in her, but I fear she could be being exploited to get more labor out of her. She says herself as taking care of him. When the kids are not there, she starts coffee for him, on weekends she says she goes to get him a bagel, or will pack a lunch for him to take to the office. My daughter's history is not so great in this area. I am afraid she could be getting carried away in a way that reminds me of some emotional issues she had in the past. She has never had a boyfriend of her own. She keeps a binder of wedding dresses, sketches and ideas. I know much of this is normal, but I am increasingly worried that she may need a reality check.

      Traveling to NYC is not an option for me. I have both parent's contact information. I really want to reach out to the mother. If the mother becomes alarmed, I won't necessarily be sorry because maybe she needs to come home and regroup, see a doctor and get checked out. If the mother isn't alarmed, there is no problem, but maybe she will be mindful of any red flags?

Dirty Deeds

     Has anyone ever dealt with this kind of issue? I have an idea about how to handle the issue, only I am unsure of when to do it, and I wonder if M and DB would be appreciative or offended.

     I recently landed a part time (every other weekend) position with a cute family. I get along well with both M and DB, and I recently applied for a full time position, asking MB if I could use them as a reference-MB was concerned that I was leaving them. I assured her I wasn't leaving, and have no intention to.
Aaron Shep

     Every family is different and unique-that's the interesting part of being a nanny. I love this family, and recently started the position a month ago, and whenever I go there, the house is a mess. They aren't very organized. There are crumbs all over the floor, P's high chair is covered in dried food in the seat and tray, there's food on the counter, such as an open box of cereal, fruit, or an open pack of crackers. I'm searching high and low for clothes for the kids, or there are clothes laying around and I don't know what's clean or dirty. The diaper genie is full, and smells of dirty diapers. Toys, shoes, clothes, etc. are laying all over the living room, and I have A clean up things she is not playing with. Of course P being a young toddler will pull everything out, but A is 2, and old enough to clean up her toys.

     I have a WA, and my WA doesn't state I have to clean up after the kids, but I do it because A. it's what nannies do, B. it's unfair to a working parent to have a messy house, C. I have manners, and was always taught that people can tell how you were raised if you don't clean up after yourself. This is a job to me, and imagine if you had a nanny and came home to a messy house at the end of a day? How would you feel about that?

     If I look hard enough, I'm sure I can find a broom for sweeping. I've looked, but can't find it. I want to organize the clothes, which maybe hard due to everything being scattered,and kids waking up during naptime. I also don't know if M or DB would be offended or appreciative.

Email isynblog@gmail.com with your stories, sightings & situations.

Tuesday

#Nannylife in 27 Tweets, #3


























Water Safety - by The Nanny Who's Seen It All

Nina Nolte
     This post was prompted by the number of emails sent from parents asking whether or not it is okay to let the nanny take their child swimming..at a friend's house, at the beach, at the club or in their own pool. I've known a lot of parents to be rigid about things like red dye and screen time only to be nonchalant about swim safety.
     If your nanny takes your child swimming at a location where there is a lifeguard and you are comfortable with that, that is your call. The only people who can take my children swimming are people I know who can and will go in after them and bring them out. I had a mother let her nanny take her two children swimming in their rural pool with no other adult around. She thought it fine, since the kids were swimming in the shallow end only and the nanny could just walk in? What if a child fell in the deep end? A non swimming nanny has no business taking your child swimming by herself. I had another mother who took their non swimming nanny on vacation with them to their beach house. They spent most of their time at the public beaches with a lifeguard. Many mornings, she let her non swimming nanny walk down to the private, deserted beach with her two children under five to "play on the shore." Had the father not arrived to the house when he did and headed to the beach to surprise the childen, the nanny and the three year old would have drowned in the choppy waves.
     My children cannot swim in the pool at the Y without passing the deep end test. The deep end test for a 7 year old is swimming half a pool length, flipping over, swimming the back stroke back and then treading two minutes in the deep end. I am shocked at the number of nannies/adults that cannot do this. Swimming is the ability to self-propel in the water without assistance. In fact, the American Red Cross defines independent swimming as the ability to travel 500 yards (the length of five football fields!) using any combination of strokes, and to tread water without a flotation device. Make sure you know what your nannies swim skills are! I know a nanny who professed herself to be a swimmer and was always swimming with the kids in the pool, so by all appearances it seemed a good arrangement. And then, the two year old fell in the deep end and dropped like an anchor down to the 12 foot bottom of the pool and the nanny couldn't get there. Fortunately, a 9 year old in the pool was able to rescue the child, but it should never come to that.
   
Nina Nolte
     According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, an estimated 260 children under five years of age drown each year in residential swimming pools and spas. It is estimated that another 3,000 children under age five are treated in hospital emergency rooms following submersion accidents each year. Some of these submersion accidents result in permanent brain damage. Nationally, drowning is the fourth leading cause of death to children under five.
     Pool submersions involving children happen quickly, 77% of the victims had been missing from sight for five minutes or less. Child drowning is a silent event, splashing and screaming  most often do not occur.      
         If an emergency happens, it is essential nannies and parents are prepared. That means knowing how to turn off the pool or spa pump should a suction entrapment occur, and where to immediately find rescue equipment, including a long-handled hook or a buoy or flotation device with an attached line. A fully charged telephone should be available at all times to dial 911. If you are a nanny charged with taking children swimming and don't have the necessary provisions, demand them.
       Make sure your children and nanny know and follow your pool and swimming rules. Establish and enforce rules and safe behaviors, such as “no diving,” “stay away from drain covers,” “swim with a buddy” and “walk please.”
   
Nina Nolte
      Be mindful of the ratio of adult swimmers to children.As a starting point, the ratio of parent supervision for all children under eight should be 1:2.  This ratio could be increased, subject to the pool and its features (teaching pool, shallow water pools, use of approved swimming aids etc.), but should never be more than 1:3.  Circumstances (the presence of flumes, wave machines, inflatables, water slides, fast river rides etc.) may require a 1:1 ratio.
    Have young or inexperienced swimmers wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket. If the strictest of water safety standards cannot be satisfied, then consider a backyard Water Toy or visit to a spray park. Really, it isn't worth the risk.
     If the persons supervising the children needs to use the restroom, make a phone call, what is the plan? Have a plan. Most flotation devices are considered toys and not lifesaving devices
       Your local Red Cross offers training in aquatics as well as first aid and CPR. (Please make sure your nanny is CPR trained). Pool Safety Gov offers a variety of free printable pages and cards to post around your pool and use with your children. Make sure you and your nanny know what to look for with regard to the risks of dry drowning. When swimming in oceans and bodies of water, be aware of the local dangers.
(recent) Cautionary Tales:
Child Almost Dies in Community Pool
... "the child had been seen “roughhousing” with others in the pool prior to the incident" “but they were just being kids, they were just playing.” "The pool was closed last Friday due to lack of water clarity after RFPRA officials determined the water was too cloudy and could have been an issue for lifeguards to see below the surface."
1o Year Old Dies When Mom Turns Her Back to Tend to Yonger Children
Witnesses at County Pool Say Lifeguards Couldn't Swim
"The lifeguard told him that they couldn't swim to him, they didn't know how to swim, and one said that he didn't know CPR."
9 Month Old is 7th Child to Drown in the OC this Month
4 Year Old Boy Drowns in Above Ground Pool During Barbecue
Child Wanders off From Sandbox and Drowns in Lake
Toddler and Nanny Die in Family Pool
Babysitter Arrested After 3 Year Old Drowns
Orange Parents of Boy Who Drowned Working to Spread Drowning Safety Awareness
5 Year Old Girl in Teen Sitter's Care Drowns in Family Pool

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends:
-Swimming lessons for children based on the child’s frequency of exposure to water, emotional maturity, physical limitations, and health concerns related to swimming pools;
- “Touch supervision” of infants and young children through age four when they are in the bathtub or around other bodies of water;
-Installation of four-sided fencing that completely separates homes from residential pools;
-Use of approved personal flotation devices (PFDs) when riding on a boat or playing near a river, lake, pond, or ocean; -
Teaching children never to swim alone or without adult supervision;
-Stressing the need for parents/guardians and teens to learn first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (3).

The Rants, #14

Catherine Campbell
     This is more of a rant than anything else. I am just shocked by some people's ignorance. I came to work on Monday and the seven year old had gotten the 9 year old's stomach illness. I barely had time to consider that I would be exposed to this and possibly get this before I was told by the 9 year old that "you get to be the slave". So what that means is when someone is sick in their house, they take a tv and ipad and tv tray and retreat to their room. They stay away from others so they don't get other people sick. When they are hungry, thirsty or needs something, they yell "Slave" and someone appears to refill their water, bring them crackers, put new batteries in the remote.

     I can't even address this with my employer because the very fact that this is going on is preposterous and would require that I have some sort of asinine conversation.Of course, I didn't participate in this with the kids. I went and plucked a windchime off of the gazebo and brought it to her and I said she could ring a bell if she needed someone. Or for that matter TEXT me. Or for that matter, call me name. The 9 year old and 5 year old told me they liked SLAVE better.

Care to rant? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

Monday

Mrs. Kravitz

     My neighbor across the street came rushing across the street yesterday to talk to me about my nanny. I was immediately worried that the nanny had mistreated a child. Nope. The neighbor reported to me that she saw our nanny at the Wilton Walmart. The nanny was riding in one of those motorized wheelchair carts.The neighbor took a picture of her, which she had on her phone and showed me.
     I don't get the motorized cart abuse and frankly I don't care. The nanny was not working for me during this time. I didn't really know what to say to her. She seemed to behave like she had a real significant "gotcha" moment.
I responded, "That is odd. She's a great nanny and unless it involved her job, my kids or our home, I really can't concern myself." You'd think that would have ended it politely. No. She started waving her hands around like a mad woman and told me that I should be concerned that she likes to take shortcuts, take things she doesn't deserve and has no character." I turned back to her and said, "Charlotte, I am sorry this has you so upset. You need to relax."
    I got back in my house and tried to shake it off. I felt I handled it okay but I started to seethe. What was her point in doing this? I don't believe that she had any genuine good intentions? The 'kicker' was as I was crossing back across the street she said, "Gloria didn't seem to think it was no big deal when I showed her".  Why is she showing this picture of my nanny around the neighborhood? Isn't the real problem here that she herself was IN a Walmart?
    I have to bring this up to my nanny now, just so she knows.
Dilemma? Debacle? Debate? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

Stop. Just Stop.

      I think I have seen this on here before, but can you maybe do a PSA? I have a lot of staff I use on as needed basis and not many full time staff. We have a nice home and nice things. But it seems people are coming at me from every direction to ask for things or get "dibs" on things.  My four year old daughter just got a really deluxe motorized vehicle to ride in the yard. We hadn't even used it once before one of my occasional sitters who was helping for the party said, "When she outgrows that, I get dibs on that." It would be funny if she was joking, but she was dead serious.My son played t-ball last year and this year moved to little league. He no longer needs his tee or bat, so the housekeeper tells me that her nephew wants to play t-ball, could she have the t-ball stuff? In the beginning it was very easy for me to say yes, but now all of these requests make me angry. In response to this, I said, "what about '4 YO daughter'?" and she looked at me and said, "no, you buy her pretty pink stuff." My daughter isn't even playing t-ball. Is it so wrong that we would want to keep a t and t-ball bat around so she could play with it? This is getting ridiculous and I am afraid it is making me very bitter. Yes, we have a comfortable life, that is not the issue. When we are done using things, I always pass on clothes and toys, I just don't like having a waiting list or the people around my children eyeing up our possessions with such salacious greed. I use a car service to go the city for a regular appointment and have a regular driver. The appointments ease up in the summer, so I don't use him as much. Last weekend, the doorbell rang and there is the driver on the doorstep. He brought me a jar of jam and wanted to introduce me to his children. I was as gracious as I could be, although I was getting ready to head out. It wasn't just the jam either. He said, "see my children are big, like adults, when you clean out your winter closet, we will take jackets and coats." Is there an underground network of pilfering domestics? What is this madness? Don't people understand that this wears away at my natural desire to look for people close to me who could use the things we no longer can? I wonder how other employers handle this?

Sunday

ISYN 2015 - Summer Salary Survey

Betty Pieper
Regular Pay: $625
Summer Pay: $800
Regular Hours: 7:15-9:00 AM, 1:00-7 PM
Summer Hours: 7:15- 6PM
Number of Children: 3; 3 yrs, 5 and 5
Favorite thing about Summer: I look GOOD in shorts
Least Favorite about summer: The kids, the hours, the fighting
Employee make it better: Enroll them in a partial day camp or something! These days are too long!
State: MA


Regular Pay: $825
Summer Pay: $825
Regular Hours:  8-6
Summer Hours:  8-6
Number of Children: 7 yo  and 2 yo
Favorite thing about Summer: Barbecues, music, water balloon fights
Least Favorite about summer: Being hot
How could an emloyer make it better: I work for the Incredibles! They are that great and no, you can't have my job!
State: CT

Regular Pay:  $900
Summer Pay: $450
Regular Hours:  7:45-6:45
Summer Hours:  7:45-6:45 for two weeks (regular pay), 9 weeks at half pay while kids are at sleep away camp
Number of Children: 2
Favorite thing about Summer: Living on the beach
Least Favorite about summer: I miss the kids. I'd rather have them here.
How could the Employer make it better: You want ME here in the fall, I don't think you should be chopping my salary in half, but hey, I know other people have it worse.
State: CA

Regular Pay:  $625
Summer Pay: $625
Regular Hours: : 8-7
Summer Hours: T,W,TH, 8-7/ Monday 2-7, Friday off or 7-10
Number of Children: 1 4 year old
Favorite thing about Summer: teaching kids to fish, teaching about sea life, lakes,
Least Favorite about summer: I love summer!
Employee make it better: The parents never leave activity money. We always have to pack a lunch and do free things.
State: NJ

Ed Asnis
Regular Pay: $550
Summer Pay: $550
Regular Hours: 7am-6:15pm
Summer Hours: 7am-6:15pm
Number of Children: 1 (15 months)
Favorite thing about Summer: Playing outside- all day, every day and long weekends!!
Least Favorite about summer: Humidlty. We love the water!!!
Employee make it better: Nothing, I love the parents I work with

Regular Pay:  $500
Summer Pay: $1000
Regular Hours: 2:30-7:30
Summer Hours: 7:30-630
Number of Children: 2
Favorite thing about Summer: They have a huge pool.
Least Favorite about summer: When their friends drop by to use the pool.
Other: Just want to say I think that nannies who sit on the sidelines and don't play with the kids in the pool aren't real nannies!
State: CT

Regular Pay:  $550
Summer Pay: $550
Regular Hours: 7am-6:15pm
Summer Hours: 7am-6:15pm
Number of Children: 1 (15 months)
Favorite thing about Summer: Playing outside- all day, every day and long weekends!!
Least Favorite about summer: Humidlty. We love the water!!!
Other: Nothing, I love the parents I work with

Douglas Simms Stenhous
Regular Pay:  $800
Summer Pay: $800 + $800 every other week.
Regular Hours: 7:40-6:40 M-F
Summer Hours: 7:40 - 6:40 M-TH and Thursday 6:40-Monday 7:40 every other weekend.
Number of Children: 2, ages 3 & 10
Favorite thing about Summer: The Hamptons every other week!
Least Favorite about summer: Working and being sober in the Hamptons every other week!
Employee make it better: Just to say, I work for an incredible single mother. The first time we went to the Hamptons (last summer), we were invited somewhere and she gave me the choice to go or not. I told her I might like to go and as nicely as possible, she suggested that I go to a certain store and pick out two outfits and a pair of shoes. She didn't give me any money, just called ahead and had the store owner help me.
State: NY

Regular Pay:  $525
Summer Pay: $525
Regular Hours: 7-6
Summer Hours: 9-6
Number of Children: 2, 14 months & 4
Favorite thing about Summer: Playing inside! Traveling with the family to the mountains,.
Least Favorite about summer: It's Arizona!
Employee make it better: I love my job!
State: AZ

Regular Pay:  $723.o5 on the books.
Summer Pay:  $0
Regular Hours: 7:30-6:45
Summer Hours:  8 weeks with NO PAY
Number of Children:  I am a nanny for two kids who will be in all day school in the Fall., I started four years ago. To keep my hours, I had to take over the housekeeping job. After four plus years, though they still decided to give me 8 weeks off with no pay. They justified that without the kids there would be no laundry or light housekeeping.
Favorite thing about Summer: Reading
Least Favorite about summer: Seeing other people enjoy paid time off.
Other: Chinsy family.
State: NY

Nicole Roggeman
Regular Pay:  $720
Summer Pay: $720
Regular Hours: 47.5
Summer Hours: 47.5
Number of Children: 2
What's your favorite thing about summer? Endless opportunities (parks, pools, zoo, etc)
What's your least favorite thing about summer? Long days (though the days are always long)
How might an employer make summer better for their nanny? Ensuring that their is money for activies, ways to get to various places, and not be unrealistic with long hours or not enough hours.
State: Washington

Have a suggestion for a feature? Email isynblog@gmail.com.  Send us your pictures of you enjoying your summer nanny gig. (No children's faces)

Saturday

"The Incompetence Astounds Me"

     Why is it so hard to get someone to respond to an ad who fits the qualifications? Only about two percent of those who respond to my ad fit all of the requirements. What makes a nanny think she can negotiate her way past some of these critical requirements?
Amelia Bedelia
My Ad:
American nanny, with social security card and ability to work in the Unites States needed by family of five for one year minimum commitment. Must drive and have a US driver's licence. Must be height and weight proportionate and fit enough to chase after young children, play soccer and take long walks. A strong swimmer is essential. *For clarification this means that you can swim multiple strokes and swim in deep or shallow water. This means you can tread water for at least five minutes. 
We are seeking a nanny free of psychological or mood disorders. We want someone who is happy. Please be someone who smiles and greets people in the morning with a positive and cheery voice. Please be educated beyond high school, minimum 2 years. Your religious, sexual and political affiliation is not relevant to us, please don't try to make it so. Please be familiar with basic tenants of child development and open to understand our parenting philosophy. We do not punish our children, nor do we bribe them or reward them. We do not do time outs. We see everything as a teaching moments. We do not yell, threaten or coerce. If this is too "sappy" or "crunch" for you, then we are not the family for you. We will be paying you on the books, on a weekly basis. We pay above the market rate and based on your experience.  We prefer a live-out nanny but if you are exceptional and need a live in position, we can make that work. We require a minimum of three childcare references, two personal references and two family references. If you smoke cigarettes, do not reply to this ad. If we hire you and find out that you smoke, you will be immediately and unapologetically terminated. International travel is required for approximately 30 days per calendar year. (3-4 trips of 6-10 days).
Clean criminal background is essential. 

      How could I be more clear? No, really. HOW COULD I BE MORE CLEAR?

Accounts Payable

Beryl Cook
     My nanny and I had a disagreement which ended up with both of us saying some things that were not very nice. I don't want to rehash it all, but there is an element of the disagreement that I can make right. She was upset that she had done some extra things over the past few months without appreciation or financial reward. I am going to give her an envelope with a card that says simply I appreciate you and some cash inside. Please help me figure out a good amount to put in the card. I just want to be done with this.
     She makes $1100 per week for 55-58 hours.
     Things we failed to appreciate/thank her for:
-assembling a swing set
-working at a birthday party on a saturday for 23 five year olds (2.5 hours)
-pet siting from Friday night-Monday morning, 2 dogs (two incidents)
-using her vehicle to drive my husband to the train (2 miles round trip, approximate 10 times)
-placing an ad on craigs list for two day laborers, picking them up in her vehicle, taking them to buy supplies at home depot and spending 12 hours supervising them building a doghouse and dog run.
-Both times my mother came to visit, my mother asked her to set her hair. She did.

Send your experiences, sightings and questions to isynblog@gmail.com.

Friday

M96 Crosstown Bus in NYC

Double Bad Nanny Sighting!
I saw boarded the bus and sat behind this pair of nanny friends.
Location:  M96 Crosstown Bus.They got off at W96th./West End
Date: 6/25/15 @ 2pm-ish

Nanny # 1: thin, about 5'6" AA nanny (no accent), wearing a white 3/4 sleeve shirt with silver metallic shoulder designs, blue jeans and navy colored 'boat shoes'. Nanny had medium length black hair in braids, worn all back with white beads.
Child #1: girl of about 3, white, reddish, curly hair, wearing an orange and red flowered dress and a yellow windbreaker jacket. White tennis shoes that showed toes.
Incident: The girl was whining and fussing. The nanny was carrying a purple plaid umbrella and the girl wanted to hold it. She was kind of fighting the nanny for it. The nanny kept telling her she was going to hurt herself. The girl kept pulling at it. The nanny handed it to her by holding it up right and stomping it on her foot. The girl immediately started crying. The nanny said, "see I told you were going to get hurt".The nanny was trying to read a book and everytime the girl reached for her or something the nanny moved away from her with disgust.

Nanny #2: Short, heavyset, wearing a multi color blue marble swirl colored mumu style dress, white tennis shoes with no socks, an ace bandage on one of her angles. She had her hair up in a bun with a colorful scarf wrapped around her hair. She spoke with a Caribbean accent.
Child #2: A boy she called Petey. Brown hair, blue and white horizontal strip shirt, blue pants, sandals.
Incident: This boy had a cold or bad allergies and kept sneezing. He sneezed and snot came out all over his face. I know because the nanny said, "Oh you disgusting, where's your tissue? Where's your tissue? I told you to bring the tissue".  She asked her friend for a tissue. She didn't have it. I offered her a tissue. She took it and gave it to him. The boy started crying and said "help, its grossy" and she said, "I am not touching your grossy,that's disgusting, wipe your nose boy". And for the next minute, instead of just helping a boy she called gross, she kepts saying, "boy you better wipe that nose". He was crying and she finally helped him only because she was afraid it was going to get on her precious dress! She grabbed the tissue and held the back of his head with such force.I was getting so angry at this woman. I wanted to say something but she was so angry about everything. The boy was wearing a sandal which either fell of or he kicked off as she was wiping his face. She picked it up off the floor and whacked him somewhere with it., I couldn't see where, but it was on his body. He started whining more. She said, "Oh now you're being silly, I didn't do anything". I think she was aware I was watching her by then. I don't know if his name was Petey or it was a nickname. She called him Poopy Petey like three times that I heard.

These two left the bus together talking about being hungry and wanting to get a sandwich.

Come With Us!

Dogan-Soysal
      Startling news in our perfect home. My husband is going to working overseas for 20 months. We are going with him. Unfortunately, it isn't a glamorous location like London or Paris, but Istanbul. We have a wonderful nanny, our first and only who started with us when the baby nurse left and the twins were 10 weeks. The twins are now 26 months.
     I don't know how I can do this without her. She is a wonderful nanny but also has a fulfilling social life. Fortunately, she is not steadily dating anyone, but she is involved in her local community and has many friends and a full social calendar. She also seems to be very close to her two sisters.
     Before I break the news to the nanny and ask her to please come with us... what can I do to sweeten the deal? We would be leaving August 1. She may choose not to go and I understand that, but if you were a nanny, and I needed you for 20 months to live overseas, how could I make it worth your while?
    Any advice would be very much appreciated! I am sure we could find another great nanny, but going to such an unfamiliar location, I think the twins and I would fair much better with the consistency of our trusted nanny,
Email your stories and questions to isynblog@gmail.com.

Primping Nanny Trying my Patience

     I am a stay at home mother of three children under 5. I have a live-in nanny that I think I treat very fairly and offer her very fair hours, 40 hours per week, always the same. Evenings at over time, with advance notice. I say this as preface to my complaint.
     First, about me. We have two homes, one in Brooklyn and one in Westchester. My husband works full time and is never around during the nanny's hours. When the day starts in the morning, she takes over at 8, while I go to my room and shower and get dressed. I'll be honest, I don't rush. I know a lot of people. I work in fashion. I don't care to look like a schlub.
 
Denise Van Leeuwen
     Our nanny is pretty great, but over the past three months, I feel she is adapting her behavior to do more what I do. I am the mother. I have a nanny full time so I can be on my phone when I want or need to. So I can get up and go send an email, so I can take time to get ready to go out with the children or to blow dry my hair. Given the nannies very fair hours, I am losing patience with nanny needing to primp. I was a nanny when I was in my early twenties. I guarantee you no one was waiting for me to blow dry my hair and apply make up while we were leaving the locker room.
    I don't know if this is something that can be discussed or if it just a sense of entitlement that she has taken on. If she is primping in the locker room at the club, I am not. I am running around after three little children. Is it horrible to have hired her to make my life easier?
    All of this primping also adds time to our very busy day. Even in the morning, when she comes to start in the morning, she will be often wearing something like workout clothes. After I return dressed and ready to get on the day, she will say, "just give me five" and go and take a shower and put on make up. I have no problem with her wanting to wear make up, but many nannies start before 8. She has until 8 to be fully dressed. The reason I take an hour in the morning is because I have been up since 530 with my husband, making breakfast and entertaining/dressing/playing with three children.
    Before I address this with her, I want to hear from nannies about the fairness of this. There was an incident in the locker room of the club where I had one child run out of the locker room while I was wearing only my bikini bottoms and I yelled for her. She seemed very miffed and later said she "hoped her hair didn't turn green" from not getting time to shampoo it.
    In the beginning, when she started, I might have been too nice and too accomodating, but I think she is taking advantage. I'd really prefer her not to dress/shower/primp during work hours and to limit tablet and phone time to a minimum. I don't care if she checks an email or texts a friend. But like I said, my children are all under 5.
    Thoughts?

Thursday

I can't help feel but this is a family in a lot of pain...

     I have been trying to figure out how to handle this since I started this job and it is only getting worse.
     My youngest charge is almost 4 years old. In the neighborhood, he is known as a tough kid. When the kids play soccer, they want him on their team. The same goes for baseball. He is fast and has great skills.
     The single father I work for is about 5'5" and he talks a lot about sports. I don't get the feeling he ever played sports, but anyway, his son is good. He has plenty of good things to jump on with his son and reinforce. And he does.
     But the son is also tough. He doesn't share. If someone takes something from him, he hits them, knocks them down, kicks them, etc. He gave a 7 year old a bloody nose for riding his scooter without permission. The father reinforces this behavior by saying things like, "Well, good they're gonna know not to mess with him" and "You either get kicked or do the kicking". Now I could debate his stupidity all day long, but he's the day. I get it. The problem is Dad works until 8 most nights. I am the person who deals with the fall out from the fights. I am the one the other mommies and nannies glare at. They think I am not doing my job because he keeps hurting other kids.
    When I tell the father that "Mrs. X doesn't want X playing with X because he is too rough.' he says things like, "Sounds like she's raising a weak kid". Everything is about being weak.  The mother is not in the picture at all because she abandoned them both when the youngest was only 2 months old. Just up and left, left a note and said she didn't want to be a mother or wife, that her world was bigger than this.
     The older boy is so sweet and good natured, a perfectionist who is really hard on himself. He is only 7 and will do crunches before bed and is always demonstrating his strength and speed, not for me, but out of habit. His day always says, "show me what you got" and "show me what you're made of". I'm not going to quit because I really like the Dad a lot. He tries but this is an area where I think he comes up short in. I am also concerned because he sees therapy as for people who are "weak" and obviously never got help for himself or the kids after they were deserted by their mother. I can't help feel but this is a family in a lot of pain. Is there anything I can do? Right now, I spend a lot of time out of the neighborhood with the kids so they don't run into the neighbors or have the chance to play with them, but now summer is in full swing and the kids are out all day long.
     In addition to their mother leaving them, they have had four nannies in the past 2 years, most of the changes occurring because of the younger child's aggression and the father not being able to deal with it. He was completely honest in the interview. He told me the nannies and him didn't see eye to eye on X,Y and Z. He told me if his kids do something wrong, they will apologize. They will not apologize for not wanting to share their toys or for defending themselves or each other. I know he sounds like a hard ass, but when I see him when he doesn't expect me, he is rolling around on the floor with them, playing race cars, reading to them. I feel like he is trying to protect them from being hurt but...I just don't know. Sometimes I get so sad by this family.
     I don't want to hurt anyone, threaten anyone or challenge anyone. I want to help. Does anyone have any considerate advice?

When DB is a Douchbag

Does anyone ever want to quit because of a rude DB?
John Peers

This weekend, there were some drain problems at the house. DB is wealthy, but a tight ass. He tried to plunge it himself and then he bought some short snake and tried that. He ended up calling a roto rooter type company who came and cleared the line for $145. DB YELLED at me for flushing a tampon. I guess that was the culprit. It wasn't me, but I didn't think I should have to defend my sanitary habits. He really wanted to argue. I told him simply, "I have never flushed a tampon anywhere". The truth is I don't even use tampons. Asshole.

Get this. He then told me, "The next time, you'll be paying the whole bill." He said this after I said it wasn't me.  Does anyone else work for an asshole DB?

I really want to quit over his shit.

Other things I have to endure.
* When I babysit, I get paid extra, cash. $15 an hour. If I work two hours and 35 minutes- MB will give me $50. If I work two hours and 35 minutes and he pays me, he will pay me $39. Something precise and exact like that, when we all know $40 would be easier!

*Sometimes when I run errands with MB and the kids, doctor's appts, etc, we stop at a deli and get bagels or sandwiches or pizza. No problem. DB needed me to go with him to son'y physical and drop him at the train station afterwards. After the physical, we had 35 minutes until the next train, so we went inside a Jewish deli with sitdown waitress service. I sat with the kid on one side of the booth. The waitress came and asked if she could get us drinks. DB ordered two cheeseburgers with fries and ice tea and then looked at me and said, "did you want a tea?" I was so shocked I said, "No, I'm fine". Even the waitress looked at me weird. I sat there while the pig devoured his burger and fries and slurped down his tea. (I REALLY WANT TO KNOW- HAS ANYONE ELSE HAD THIS HAPPEN?)

*When DB is due home, he is always late and never calls. The one time he wasn't late, he was early, didn't let me know he was coming home early and I was in the pool with the two kids. He threw open the door off the sun room and said, "Sorry to interrupt all this hardwork, but I came home to take my kids to a baseball game, it would be nice if they could not be dripping wet". Can I just say here that I know nannies who can't swim and nannies who won't swim. I know nannies who will only get their lower bodies wet and don't let the kids splash their face or hair. I'm in the pool playing games with the children. And he makes me feel like an ass? And all the times he is late, he knows I won't dare expect extra pay. Granted, it's never more than an hour, but his time is important- why isn't mine??

MB is the complete opposite of him. She is fun, light and bright. I have noticed things like the kids getting in trouble at school and she will tell me, "let's just keep this between us". with the overwhelming tone being that DB is too hard on the kids. Too grumpy. Not to be inconveniences, etc.
So, after this latest incident, I don't feel like it is worth the effort. I have been here since October. The few times I see him in the morning, he won't even say good morning. When I say good morning to him, because, I'm a human being, he will NOD. Yeah, nod.

I'm pretty sure he resents me because he thinks that my job is silly and hates that they pay $900 a week to me. I can't win right? I mean unless he drops dead, he's going to keep fucking with my self esteem, mood and time.

What do you think? Leave your comments below or share your work story with us by emailing isynblog@gmail.com.


My Nanny, Your Nanny, Lived Across the Street...

       I have a strange situation. My acquaintance and neighbor had a great nanny for three years. I am a stay at home Mom and my friend works. The kids would get together often, so I had a lot of contact with the nanny. When my husband and I traveled, 3 times, she babysat my children. One time, we went to Pakistan for 12 days. I really trust her and had a great regard for her.

      My neighbor/friend started to work from home and this deteriorated their nanny/employer relationship. The nanny was fired on Monday, on the spot and told to clear out by 3PM. The employer left with the children. The nanny was in tears and came to me. It sounded completely unreasonable on the employer's part. I offered the nanny our guest room.

      Now, I have the nanny staying with us. My kids play with their kids and the mom doesn't want the nanny to see the kids, for no reason except to be punitive. The kids miss her desperately and she misses them. The woman/neighbor is also a person of "power" in our community. She sent me a series of texts accusing me of stabbing her in the back by letting the nanny stay here.  This person has never been a friend to me, she's not a nice person.

Mark Hess
     To that point, the last text I received from her states that she is going to the police station to file an order of protection against the nanny because she is claiming that the nanny is here to stalk her. The nanny is from Virginia, has no family in CT and has no place to go. She wasn't given severance or warning or anything, and this after THREE years.

      Everyone tells me not to get involved, to wash my hands of the situation and to send the nanny packing. The odd thing is that Monday was the first day of summer vacation. My children are now home all day, I could really use a nanny, and there is no nanny I have higher regard for than this nanny. My husband says it won't ever work to have her here, that her boss will make our lives miserable. (She has already banned her children from playing with our children, or coming to our side of the street). The houses are very spread out here, each property sits on at-least an acre, so she has no reasonable cause to feel stalked. I know she knows what she did is wrong. It feels abusive and like power and control being used to hurt her and then me.

     The nanny is staying in a what was designed as a mother in law suite in the basement. It faces the opposite direction of her house. Our back yard and driveway also face opposite of their house. The nanny does not need to pass by their house at all. Can I make this situation work? I have had some offers come my way to get back into the design field, free lancing,largely from home and part of me thinks this is perfect. And then the next minute, I think I am as crazy as she is.

edited for content-JP
email isynblog@gmail.com about ANYTHING.




Nanny's Questionable Techniques...

Martin Hsu
Can she rehabilitated? She seems good in so many ways. She has energy, is organized, she doesn't do housekeeping but leaves the house so clean. She makes nutritious snacks and meals, does all kind of athletic stuff with the kids, which I love. The problem is she says things like, "You are being lazy". I asked her not to say that and she says, "It's true, but I don't stop there, I say, "you are being lazy or making a lazy choice, what would be a better choice". She does the same things when it comes to grooming, telling the kids they look sloppy, their breath smells, they need to take care in their own appearance at this age, etc. When I say she says their breath smells, I mean literally my daughter came down and gave her a hug around the neck and she put her hand up in the air and said, "Yuck, is that your breath? Aren't you supposed to brush your teeth before you come downstairs?". I think it is is harsh, but she says she doesn't mean it in a bad way and that it is the truth, would I want a friend to tell them that? Or should she while they are in the house and can rectify the situation?
Something going on? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

Wednesday

ISYN - Nanny of the Week

"The babysitter jumped on the hood of the Durango in an attempt to stop the vehicle."
Babysitter Tries to Stop Abduction In Meigs County, Ohio, deputies said a father reported his child’s babysitter tried to stop an abduction of his 7-year-old daughter by the girl’s mother and another man, but the babysitter was struck in the head with a gun as he attempted to jump on the hood of the getaway vehicle. West Virginia State Police stopped the vehicle Tuesday morning at the Walmart in Ripley and arrested the mother and four other people. The girl then had an emotional reunion with her father in the parking lot.. (read more here).
Want to share a story about an amazing nanny or babysitter? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

The Terminator

Ray Hartland
      We need to let our nanny of 1 year, 4 months go due to financial problems we are having. We can't afford to give her severance, but will give her two weeks notice, if she wants to stay and work. Besides a thank you letter and letter of reference, is there anything I can do for her? I just feel she is going to be very angry with us. Has anyone had that happen? When the nanny gets really angry and then you don't feel comfortable around her? If that should happen, do I rescind her ability to continue working for two weeks? She was our first and only nanny. My brother-in-law says that because she is a live in nanny we have to give her thirty days notice. Is there a legal form for this? I feel like we should put this in writing but I couldn't find anything online as a sample. We are planning to do this as soon as possible. Please help. I'm nervous. If she wants to leave right away, that is more than okay with me, I just need some sort of documentation to prove I offered her to stay 30 days? I'm very nervous about this.

Something on your mind? Email isynblog@gmail.com.

The Struggle is Real

Created by Renee
     Just wondering if any of you have been in this situation before.. I have been working for this family for about 9 months they have 2 young girls. Unfortunately for me they are sending their kids to full day/ sleep away camp next week for the entire summer. They kind of told me this in early June which was kind of late and I have been desperately looking for another job. I have been to several interviews and they all went great but I never heard anything back from them. This one mother emailed me all the way from Jersey she needed a live in.. I didn't want to do live in but I considered it. We spoke on the phone for a short while and she seemed like she really needed someone and I answered all her questions honestly. She sounded really excited and asked me if I can come for a physical interview at her house. I decided to go all the way to New Jersey, the trip alone cost me $20.00. When I got to her house, she opened the door and I noticed she was African American like me. I immediately knew she would not hire me because I was much younger and not trying to blow my bubble but I was prettier than her. The house was really nice, very nicely furnished and decorated, they had a huge playhouse in the backyard plus a deck, and a very big modern kitchen. the interview went ok, she didn't seem as excited to speak with me like she was on the phone, but I tried my best to still show that I was interested.

      She introduced me to her husband, he too was African American.. I met all 4 of her kids and they seemed lovely. She wasn't offering much for the position her payment was between 400-550 a week, I told her I would accept 600.
     After the interview, she showed me the bedroom in the basement where I would be sleeping, it was also right next to the kids playroom. We then went back upstairs and chatted briefly, I got my stuff to leave and said goodbye.. And that was the last time I ever heard from her again.. I never received a text or email explaining why I didn't get the job. That was very frustrating for me a little, but I already had that feeling.
     I think I'm a great nanny/ babysitter, I enjoy caring for kids, I'm honest, respectful and hardworking .. All the kids I have cared for they all love me but I have bad luck getting jobs!
This is my final week of work and I think I have send out a gazillion applications but little response.. I have looked around and noticed that most nannies where I work they are either old, really fat, or just sloppy looking. I rarely see young nannies who like me are in shape, and pretty.
     I hate to make this observation but it's true.. I have no interest in anything other than being the best nanny I could be but I feel like I'm at a disadvantage. Anyway just wanted to share my struggle ...
Share your struggle by emailing isynblog@gmail.com.