Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I would like to update the readers on what has happened in my home. First, thank you for allowing me to post my question. The responses I received were overwhelmingly voicing concern that the nanny was take advantage. Many great suggestions were offered. The number of responses received helped me to decide to take action. On Friday, before the nanny went home, we had some time to talk. I thanked her for being so reliable and let her know how comfortable I felt with her taking care of the babies. I was very complimentary. I then said something to the effect of, "I know the winter has been particularly brutal this year and going out to pick up meals is a great diversion and gets you all out of the house for a bit of time and I understand that, I just think the cost has begun to add up." At that point her eyes changed and I could tell she immediately went on the defensive. She said, "I didn't realize it was causing a problem" and I said, "not a problem, not at all. I would like X and Y to try new foods everyday and I just think if you sat down and ate with them". She sort of cut me off and said something to the effect of "yes, I know, they are getting older. I always share things with them. That's why I get the pastas. They like the pastas and the vegetables that come with it are always tender". I said, "great, that's great and I'm not saying not to do that every now and then.." I think she cut me off again. She said something about trying some homemade dishes and wanting to do that but X and Y don't give her much time to spend at the stove". It ended somewhat awkwardly, but I felt I had said what I needed to say, honestly and was satisfied. Monday morning came and the nanny arrived per her usual. I got the same greeting as always. Monday went well. I had left a grocery list I had started and told her to add what she wanted to the list. I left it with the credit card. I noticed Monday night she had not gone to the store. I didn't grow concerned. Yesterday, I came home and the grocery list was still there, as was the dry cleaning receipt. In addition, there was a $1.00 bill and a note saying, "I used a tomato to add to my sandwich. Please replace it with this money when you get to the store". I didn't see her this morning because I had a 7:30 meeting. I am at work dealing with a chaotic and costly mishap, but I am completely distracted by the nanny's behavior. Did I deserve this? And how do I fix this?
Received Monday, February 2, 2009
I have a nanny who is wonderful with my babies. I have twins who are nine months old. This is not an easy job and the nanny does it with ease and a smile on her face. I have no complaints about the way she does her job, minus a few picking up after herself issues. One other issue has come about though and I was hoping for some insight. The nanny said during her interview that her main concern was being stuck inside with the babies and that she felt that it would be good to take them out most days, even if it were for a walk, even if it were to run a personal errand in the neighborhood or (she volunteered-to pick up groceries, go to the drugstore, drycleaning, etc.).
I can tell the nanny enjoys having things to do. Again, this is something I am grateful for. When she began these outings, I would say to her, such as "there's a great little deli one block down, why don't you pick up something for yourself for lunch". I have also told her if she wants to keep some things on hand for her lunch, she should just use the credit card and buy them. This all started out reasonably. When the nanny started using the card on a regular basis at the deli, I was not concerned, as stated, I am grateful for the care she provides my child.
Since that time, she has escalated her spending to include picking up lunches, full fledge lunches at Italian restaurants. A lunch bill alone can be 2--25 for just herself. At the same time, she continues to keep the house stocked with her favorites. I realize that with the two babies, she does not have a lot of time for prep and her day is from 7-6, but she is currently eating all three meals at our house. Her breakfasts and dinners are often premade or frozen entrees from wholefoods. And lunch is always out. In addition, she drinks Fiji water, to the tune of about a case per week.
I wasn't previously looking at the receipt until I got my last bill. When she goes to Whole Foods, she does get things for the entire house (which she also noshes on). But for example, last week, on Monday, she bought three egg and cheddar bagels on croissants, a chorizo burrito, a $25 platter of drummettes (I doubt that it was meant for one person), a three layer enchilada pie, 2 pizzas, a sandwich, two types of cheese, three types of crackers. When I was looking over the receipt on Sunday, what struck me is that none of the food is here. Meaning, from Monday-Friday, she ate all of the food. This is in addition to looking at my online banking statement and seeing that on Tues, Weds and Friday, she ordered meals to pick up or be delivered from delis or pizza places.
My husband uses the word hoggish. I don't think she is taking the food home because she is a large woman and because my mother in law had been recuperating here following a hip surgery. She left about two weeks before the nanny started. My mother in law called and asked if she could send her health care aid over to pick up a case of butter pecan ensure she had left here. I said, sure of course, and told my nanny that someone might be dropping by. The nanny told me, "I'm sorry, I drank it. I didn't know it was needed". I said to her, "of course not, how could you? I didn't even realize it was here". I mention this only as it goes to the whole hoggish thing. My trouble is she is really loving and tender with the babies. Is there a way to address this without coming off as petty and unappreciative? Is it too late to set a $ amount on the food allowance per week? I appreciate all of your advice. Thank you, UES.