Sunday

suggestions please!

Hello, 

I am not currently a nanny, (I have been a baby sitter in my teenage years and worked at a day care, I am now 26) I would like some advice on becoming a nanny.  Are there classes I should take? What is the best way to find a nanny job?  Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!!

Thank you!

Wednesday

what to do?

I am a full time nanny for a 3 year old and 5 month old baby. Upon arrival of newborn- parents offered me a raise ($13 for both boys and $11 for when I just have the baby). Starting in June 3 year old will be in school 3 full days a week which will significantly lower my paycheck. They sprung the preschool bit on me after the fact (raise)

Tuesday

Frustrated Nanny needs advice

I feel so frustrated and depressed. I've been working in the Upper West Side for almost a year being the nanny to a 8 year old kid. More like the mom really because they work really long hours and are never around. They make a LOT of money and the kid goes to a top private school (tuition of nearly $50.000 a year). Parents have very successful jobs but yet I only get paid $20 an hour off the books part time, since kid is at school 9hs. I was never offered the opportunity to be on the books but I have decided it's time for me to step up for myself and have a talk with them. I have no benefits whatsoever, no meals included, no overtime when kid is off school working more than 40hs. I am a very hard working person who have struggled a lot to come to this country and be where I am today. I have worked my but off for countless of other families and different jobs. At the moment I'm working towards my bachelors in science and boy it's hard to juggle it all together. I feel I do so much more than what their parents do for their kid in terms of bringing love and a sense of connection to his life. I only work part time and not only a nanny but running errands, grocery shopping and cooking. It's been almost a year and no raise conversation, no birthday present, very low Christmas bonus of $300. Considering I'm practically raising their kid and the one who spends the most hours with him during the week, for a Manhattan nanny working for an upper class family with just one kid that have a way above high standard of living and high income I'm getting ripped off. I do not even live In Manhattan and cannot make ends meet anymore with this wage. Truth is I need to pay my bills and being on the books and a raise is something I deserve to give myself dignity and power to other nannies doing what we do and be seen as a what it is: a very important job, a professional.

Please I need to urgently know what is a reasonable but decent rate to charge for families of this type and what benefits should I ask for.


Kindly,


Frustrated nanny

Monday

Gracious Me Academy's Anna Minter weighs in on being a nanny!

I am very excited to weigh in on the subject of being a nanny. In 1980, when my sons were 1 month, 14 months, and 3 ½, I left a very promising career with AT&T (complete with bountiful benefits) to stay home and become a nanny. Armed with various crafts, audio story and song cassettes, toys, educational workbooks, and miniature furniture, I felt prepared and excited for my new venture. Our outside yard looked like a park with a huge slide and clubhouse/ tree house and sandbox. I had been to night school for early childhood development classes, I am bi-lingual, I am patient and loving, I was CPR trained and my home was certified. I was ready to start accepting new charges or was I? Did I mention that I was only 23 years of age when I started?

Our home was situated on an acre just outside of Los Angeles, north of Burbank, Ca. The rural landscape provided a perfect setting for farm animals and lots of healthy children’s activities. In no time, I had 10 children in my home (8 in diapers)I might have been over my certification limit at various times.I didn’t know how to say no (besides the money was great) I recruited a friend to assist. Life was great for the first few months.

Within the first 6 months my friend abandoned ship, my husband helped when he could. Without so much as two words I accepted an acquaintance to join forces. Without a proper background check and training, she proved to be more trouble than help. She stated bossing ME around and called in sick and wanted me to continue to pay her on days she did not show up. Soon I was on my own again. I couldn’t quit because first, I truly did not want to leave my children with anyone but me, second, I had made an investment into equipment, third, I was making money, and most important to me, I was no quitter. My reputation was building and I did not have to advertise for new enrollees, so I braved on.

Truth be told, it was extremely difficult. I persevered for 5 years, until I literally had a nervous breakdown. I went to my Dr. because I was losing so much weight and my hair was falling out. He told me my stress level was out of control.

In hindsight here is what I learned: My children were suffering because I would get to them last they were on the bottom of the totem pole. No one was coming to pick up my kids, so I was just keeping them busy until all the other children’s needs were met and their parents came. By the time the last child was wiped clean, packed-up and retrived, I was too exhausted to give the proper nurturing to my own children. I had not set limits for space, I put babies in my children’s cribs and in spite of cleanliness (I had hired a part time-housekeeper) we had contracted head lice, including me. I shut down for 2 weeks and took the furniture out shaved my sons’ heads and cut my hair. Every day we were disinfecting toys and washing loads of laundry. Weekends were spent getting ready for the upcoming week. Parents did not have the understanding for my workload. They often came late or did not show up for care most times not even calling and I had not set limits for them to pay on days missed.

What I learned is that many parents had their own guilt about leaving their children in someone else’s care. Pretty soon the good cop, bad cop game would start-up. Parents wanted to play best friend with their children and wanted me to hold the line of strict discipline. My best foot forward, I opted to error on the side of patience and nurture so that the children would feel love and security in my care. But it all came at a cost. Rearing our own children is challenging enough, adding a house full of other children started causing resentment. We were limited as to where we could go and often missed out on family fun during the week even weekends due to kid overload. I was burning out.

After 5 years of working as a Nanny, I took the advice of my doctor and resigned. I can honestly say, in good conscience, parents and children alike were saddened that I could no longer continue. But, here’s the thing, no one seemed to fully appreciate all the work and care that went into rearing their children in their absence. This added insult to injury.

All in all I learned so much caring for children. I gained skills and pulled on my gift and strength of patience. 5 years later I would become an elementary school, kindergarten teacher. Fast-forward to today and I have now retired from teaching. The ironic thing, I have been considering returning to the nanny field. This time I do not have children of my own to contend with.

Taking the skills I learned as a nanny helped me greatly in the classroom. But the greatest take away was the interpersonal skills I refined as a nanny. Dealing with parents and children alike gave me the idea to write children’s books with an emphasis on manners. As educators, we work to help mold the little ones. Why not take advantage of the fact that we have their attention and the opportunity to touch their hearts. What a noble opportunity. In our current cultural climate, it’s nice to know that people still care about modeling kindness and making a difference.

For what it's worth, here are my words of wisdom to you: remember to keep your own “oxygen mask” on for self-care and self-respect because you are doing a notable and very worthy job. You’ll need every ounce of self-preservation in order to give out; you can’t give what you don’t have. I had to learn this the hard way. I do appreciate your choice to nurture and from one who worked “in the trenches” Thank you!

©2017 Anna Minter - GraciousMeAcademy

Sunday

Rant or Venting....Just a little irritated....am I overreacting?

Hello All,

I just wondered if anyone has the same issue with this as I do. (I am a mom with nearly grown children, as well as a nanny for a 4yr old)

Yesterday, I was at an Easter/Spring party and they had someone dressed as the Easter Bunny.  This bunny helped the kids with the egg hunt and was available for pictures, there was a line for the bunny pictures and while most kids were happy to sit with the bunny, some were not.  Now, here is where my irritation comes in.  The parents of children that wanted no part of the bunny would force their children (while screaming) to sit for a picture with the bunny.  How is that fun for the child?

I don't understand how these parents can not see that they are traumatizing their children.  Am I wrong?

Not Just a Mom.

Tuesday

Stick This Out? Or Go For Better!

I need some advice, I have been a nanny for 5 years since my early 20's. I have had some awesome families,the longest being one I had been with for 3 years part time. I told my last family I was moving so they found another nanny. I am moving as my other half is in the military but it's taking longer than I thought. So I picked up another family and I am miserable. The mom is so overbearing and works from home and comes running anytime the baby cries even if nothing is wrong. Also she won't let me take him for a small walk past the front gate. I am trying to stick this out as we are moving in 2 months. Do I stick it out or leave? I feel completely undermined. All my other families trusted me to take the kids on walks and more, but now I am stuck in a house not only with a 10 month old but the mother too. HELP

Question for our readers...

In our interview with Anna Martinez-Minter yesterday, she her most challenging part of being a nanny was "having to deal with the parents that felt guilty about not being there and the parents would try to be the child's "friend" and wanted to leave the child rearing to me. I felt like we were playing good cop, bad cop and I was always the bad cop.'

What is the most challenging part of your Nannying job?

Staying out of pity?

Hi all, I have a dilemma I am getting mixed advise about and thought I'd ask others. I have been nannying p/t for a teen with special needs M-Friday for almost two years. I was actually supposed to move last year so the family was happily surprised when I signed on for another year. Now I am saving money for a house and need more income. I am literally only making $200 a week which is fair since I work only 2 hours daily. The issue now is that the mom has been going through chemo for this whole year so I only work every other week.. My fiance thinks I should quit and find another job but I like routine and become loyal to families so I want to ask the parents about either paying me for the weeks I don't work or raising my weekly fee to 300 or I may have to quit. My parents think it would be offensive to ask this but I feel like I can't stay out of pity without a raise and I've been working for them for 2 years and I am SURE they have a very hard time finding babysitters and can't easily replace me. Help!

Regards,
Staying out of pity?

Monday

Nanny turned Author Interview

We had a chance to chat with Anna Martinez-Minter about how she went from being a Nanny to a published author of her popular children's book "MABLE SETS THE TABLE".

How long were you a nanny? I was a nanny for 12 years. I did every type of Nannying...from live in to nannying at my home with children staying overnight.

How did you go from being a Nanny to being an author? I truly enjoyed teaching my charges and making learning fun for them. This was my passion and I found a writing group that encouraged me, (I first ended up with a publisher that took control over my book and my writing group helped me with that situation as well and I learned how not to make that mistake again)

What is your specialty as a children's author? focusing on manners helping build a child's "toolbox" of important life skills.

What do you believe are the most important example of manners? Kindness, Awareness outside themselves, Making "please" and "thank you" automatic, Learning to say "I am sorry" and mean it, and being available to help others.

What was the most challenging part of being an nanny? having to deal with the parents that felt guilty about not being there and the parents would try to be the child's "friend" and wanted to leave the child rearing to me. I felt like we were playing good cop, bad cop and I was always the bad cop.

What was your favorite part?
Being able to influence the children in everything that I believe is important aka being a Modern Day Mary Poppins.

How do you become an author?
WRITE, WRITE, WRITE. Watch your charges, they are a wealth of information. They will be your best influence.

Here is a link to her website Gracious Me Academy

http://www.graciousmeacademy.com/

Thank you Miss Anna Martinez- Minter, We appreciate the time you took to chat with I Saw Your Nanny and we look forward to more of your stories!




Thanks for reading!

SS


FAVORED



I have had a nanny job for 3 months and I really need it but there is a part that makes me really uncomfortable.

The younger brother is 4 and the older brother is 7, I am mainly hired for the younger brother, gladly, but I do have to deal with the older brother who I believe is unruly and mean. I always have a fun day with 4 yr old and then when 7 gets home at about 3 by carpool, I constantly have to make sure he does not attack 4 yr old, calls him names, smacks the side of his head, even says " I should kill you!", One time 7 yr said to me - first week - "feel free to smack him anytime you want, I do". Now 7 yr old has many activities and my time with him is limited - Thank goodness for that. The dad works so much I rarely see him, but the mom does get home from work and keeps me there about an hour till she is settled and when 7 yr old says these things to his brother she says in sing song voice "not nice" or ignores it, etc. Now, I am careful to see if 4 yr is ever injured and he is not that I can see - no bruises, and I do what I think best - he adores me - i would do anything for him. But am I doing enough? I need this job. What do I do? thank you



Spring Boredom Busters

Hey Bloggers!

I found this on Pinterest and thought I would share....

It has some pretty cool things to do with your charges!

Thanks for Reading!

SS

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/95349717092637092/


Finding a Nanny/babysitter for a child with Diabetes

Jasmine Burns, a RN has sent us this article to post about finding a babysitter (Nanny) for a child with diabetes. It is a very thorough article. She would like some feedback from us.

this is the email we received from her..

"Thank you for getting back.
Here is the editorial piece we are working on https://www.thediabetescouncil.com/finding-a-babysitter-for-your-child-with-diabetes/

I was wondering if you can take a look and let us know if there is anything missing or if there is anything that we need to change/add/modify.

We have done our best to cover everything but we want to ensure that we are putting out the right information out there.

Your feedback will help over half a million readers with diabetes"


Friday

HELP! NANNY NEEDS ADVICE!

I have many years of experience as a nanny, twelve to be exact. I am very skilled in learning and social development. I have been with my current family for over a year now. I follow a schedule, sleep-trained their now 16 month old, and was given the freedom to take him on outings. My problem is this. The mom is a serious germaphobe and up until the baby was a year old he was only allowed on walks around the neighborhood. His parents read a lot of psychologists' advice and have recently began to seriously micromanage my every move. When the baby scores as under-developed in some areas (ie. not walking yet, not speaking over 5 words yet), I catch blame. I must mention that he is only allowed not the floor of his playroom because the mom thinks the other rooms in their rather large house isn't clean enough. The reason is, they have 6 cats and I feel as if they take priority over the baby in that situation. They have a camera in his playroom so they can "record special moments" but really it is to keep an eye on me. I was recently texted one night at 3 AM with a 4 paragraph essay on how they don't think I'm talking to the baby enough. They want consistent reaction. He is never allowed to play on his own. I have to constantly respond. When he wants something I must say yes, unless it is to something that will cause serious injury. One part of the text said that she felt as if his self-confidence was hindered because I said "no" too much. The thing is, I don't. I do set boundaries for him but in no way hurt his feelings when I am helping him learn something. I give him only praise and encouragement, but to them it's not enough. Yesterday, both parents were home and during lunch I cut him blueberries. Because I was doing it by hand she suggested using a plate because "He tends to grab" but he's never done that with me. He acts out more with them than he does with me. I'm structured and they're more "Yes to everything" parents. The only socializing the baby gets is going to a little gym class every Mon and Thurs morning and a Kindermusik class on Friday mornings. The rest of the week I am supposed to be allowed to take him on outings but lately the mom just wants me to take him to the park that is 5 mins away. They bought us all passes to the zoo but they make it a thing to take him on the weekends and am discouraged to take him during the week. I can't take him to the aquarium because the mom doesn't like it, though it's the largest in the country and very educational. I was invited by my fiance's mother and his little sister who is the same age of my baby and the parents said no. I'm just at my whit's end. I was hired as an expert and have done nothing less of an exceptional job. I was even given a raise and $2500 cash bonus for doing so well but lately I've become discouraged and depressed. I have such a special bond with the baby but cannot take the micromanaging and undermining my work. How can I communicate my concerns without come across as disrespectful and arrogant? I want to be firm but not rude. HELP!

Tuesday

ISYN on FACEBOOK

We are beginning to post many of our readers questions and comments on our facebook page.

Please check it out at ISYN FACEBOOK!!


SPRING TIME!



Happy Spring! Does anyone have any fun spring time activities you like to do with your charges?




Post them in the comments OR send them to us at isynblog@gmail.com





Thursday

Scary Incidents...

Recently a friend of mine posted an article on Facebook talking about the uptick in child trafficking in certain cities in the US. The article talked about a foiled snatching and the mother's sense early on in the encounter that something just wasn't right.

It reminded me of an incident a few years ago while I as out with my charges (triplets, then two years old). I had offered to do the family grocery shopping since MB was having a busy week at work (and I enjoyed getting out of the house haha). She texted me a list, I packed up the kids, and off we went to Costco.

Since the shopping cart only had two seats/seatbelts, I had two of the kids buckled in and carried the third one on my hip. We got to the checkout and I pulled up to the self service kiosk, put the child down by my leg, between me and the cart (with the cart angled so she'd have had to climb through my legs to wander off) and began checking out.

I was not distracted at all, I had the cart full enough forward so that I could put things from the cart to the belt without breaking line of sight with the kids (because even though kidnapping was the LAST thing on my mind, I'm a bit paranoid lol). The kids and I were chatting as we checked out - stuff like, "Oh, here are the oranges! You like oranges, don't you? Here's the broccoli - what color is it?" Etc.

Two women were standing over by the other checkout line, hanging out. They had sodas from the snack bar but no shopping cart or items. They looked over at us and watched for a bit (which I'm used to when we go out - triplets are a bit of an oddity and my charges are CUTE). They walked a little closer and the first woman started asking questions - are they triplets, how old are they, etc. I answered politely but shortly and did not encourage the conversation.

At this age, one of the triplets was much smaller and fairer (and to be honest, "cuter") than the other two. Suddenly one of the women stepped right up to the cart and put her hands around her in a way that just scared me without being able to articulate why I was so freaked out (I realized later that the way she touched her was like she was figuring out how heavy she was, like how much effort would be required to pull her out of the seat).

I'm generally a person who gives everyone the benefit of the doubt and not a "scene" person at all, but I basically went into mama bear mode. I picked up the child by my legs and stepped between the kids in the cart and the women. I said, "Please don't touch my child. I don't know you. You're making me uncomfortable." They didn't immediately back off or apologize or any response that a normal person who accidentally scared someone might have. I kept repeating it, getting louder each time.

By now people were definitely looking, and the women left. I was freaked out, threw the groceries in the cart while still blocking the kids, and went out to the car, being hyper aware of my surroundings. I opened one door, put rhe kids inside, tossed the groceries in, and locked us all inside to calm down.

I definitely didn't realize while it was happening why I was reacting the way I did (a lot of warning signals I wasn't consciously aware of and only realized later) and I'm sure I looked like an easy target (single adult, three young kids, trying to check out and keep everyrhing together). But it was actually kind of a good feeling after to know that I instinctively responded the way I should have, if that makes any sense.

Has this ever happened to any other nannies or caregivers?

Saturday

I need to vent.... and want opinions please!

I need to vent (and ask opinions of other fellow nannies)

I am the nanny of a 3 year old and now 4 month old baby. I was working 60 hours plus a week and the parents recently hired a pt nanny who comes 2 half days a week. I like the parents I work for; but the parenting sucks.. It makes for my day pretty rough. Currently training the 3 year old on the potty. Parents have him sitting on his little potty in front of TV. Child was doing fabulous until a few days ago where he just refused to go. I (the nanny) have him in big boy pants all day and he (the child) loves the idea. He wants to be the big kid. When mom has him it's straight to the pull ups- although child doesn't want to. Yesterday (child was going to school with mom- it's a preschool/ parent involved class) He was in big boy pants and I told him he needed to go potty before he left with mom. I mentioned that he had big boy pants on. Mom said I don't want to deal with that at school- he needs to be in pull ups. Child had a total melt down- he wanted his big boy pants.. Parents don't encourage at all.

Other ways she really makes bite my tongue...

Since we hired the new person- I thought it would be nice for the older child to spend quality time with me- I've been with him since he was 5 months old- so I asked mom if it would be okay to take C out while new person was at home with baby- doesn't want baby out in cold- mom refused. "I don't want new person to do nothing while baby sleeps. All he (older child) wants to do is play". No he wants someone's attention!!!! And that's really hard with a little one...

Since new person can set her own days (I'm okay with this) she set to work M and W of next week. Mom has an important conference (C school day) at work; and so I asked her if she wanted new person to come over on that day and I would take C to school. She refused.. "I don't want to change her schedule if I don't have too- um she was changing it anyway as she is going out of town... Really?

Every since baby was born and mom has gone back to work- things in her have changed. I know she is stressed about work and I give her the benefit of the doubt; but I am so frustrated.

Help! I'm in a Pickle!

So I'm in a pickle. I started working with this current family a little over a year ago. I was at the time working about 45 hours a week but they were very flexible. I was paid a weekly salary. I had vacation but never had to use it because I worked most of my hours in a few (long) days and the other days were a few hours here and there. The long days were rough but having the early long weekend was worth it. Well when I was interviewed they said no cleaning would be involved. If I had time, I would clean a little and do some dishes. I would also take the kids out to activities, something else they never asked for. Well suddenly if I didn't do the dishes they would mention it as if it were a requires duty. Also if I didn't take them out one day I was grilled about it. Then the hours changed. I was told i would still get out earlier one day a week but when the time came I was still pulling 5 long 10-11 hour days. I'm also in school at night and they knew this when I was hired. When I finally mentioned this they seemed very annoyed. They've seemed to be trying to work with me but only temporarily. So after a while it will go back to the other hours. I'd love to work with them but I need shorter days or maybe 4 long days and 1 regular one where I can just get out a couple hours early. I've nannied and worked in centers for years. I also don't get paid for the overtime that I've started working and she had promised a nanny contract but still hasn't "gotten to it" over a year later. Those are all things I should've mentioned before and now I'm so burned out. Idk what to do. Any advice? Am I being crazy or is this not ok?


Wednesday

Kudos To You - Our Readers Kick Scammers' Tooshes

The Old Check Fraud Attack!! ( from Leigh)

Our blog has just now helped a major media outlet with a great reputation learn about a scam that happens to potential nannies. The scammers gain the trust of the vulnerable nanny who of course needs a job and sustenance , gaining her gratitude and joy by sending some advance pay for time and supplies ( as much as $5000 ), and then asking for some of it back blah blah. Well, you know the rest - the original money is fake, it eventually bounces and the evil-doers have the nanny's hard won money earned thru blood sweat and tears while the nanny is overdrawn and in debt!

Good job ISYN!! Your report inspired talented members of the media to investigate to help other nannies! The report is coming up after the weekend and we will get it to you!!

meanwhile - anyone reading this who has been scammed for money as a nanny there are people who wish to know and help - email us !

key words - fraud against nannies, abuse against nannies, steal money from nannies, lie to nannies

Monday

Suggestions please!!

I am a nanny for a 2 1/2 year old and almost 3 month (13 pound) boys. C was a super easy baby. Slept in crib at 2.5 months. J is transferring from soft bassist like rocker to his crib which he absolutely refuses. We tried everything- rocking to sleep (put in) instant wake up, letting him cry for a few- pick me up now!! We want to try to transfer him to crib but don't want to take time away from 2.5 year old. HELP please!!