Monday

Christmas Eve Party...

Received Monday, December 14, 2009
Perspective and Opinion on ISYN Background: I have 6 years experience as a professional nanny, 5 years experience as a mother's helper before that. I am a full-time college student, working my way towards a degree in Human Development/Early Childhood Education. My day current day job is 3-8 hour days/week for a special needs 3 year old (in preschool every morning) and a 20 month old and I make $14/hour. I'm a regular at ISYN, so I'll try to give as many details as possible.

I have been providing weekly babysitting and occasional overnight care to a family with 10 month old triplets, one with Down's, since the babies were 4 months old. When I started with this family, I had NO experience with triplets nor any experience as a night nanny and I REALLY needed the money so I accepted her offer of $13/hour. I chose not to have a contract since, obviously, this is a very part-time position and both parties need a lot of flexibility due to their travel schedules and my school schedule. Since the babies sleep through the night 95% of the time, I'm content with the $13/hour.

My dilemma: MomBoss approached me about providing care during their Christmas Eve party. Before I knew the details, I said I would ask a minimum of $15 hour JUST because it's Christmas Eve. When I mentioned it depends on how many kids are present, she said "Well, then we'll have to do more than $15 because there will be a few kids."

The children present would include: 3-10 month olds(in bed by 6:30/7), 2-2 year olds, a 4 year old, a six year old, and an 8 year old. I WOULD NOT BE THE SOLE CARE PROVIDER--at least not for the whole night. I would need to be there by 4, with all the kids and family (except the infants) leaving for less than 2 hours for Christmas Eve church services. Once they return, one of the parents has planned (will be managing) craft activities for the older kids while I get the infants in bed. After that, I am invited "to eat Christmas dinner and all that fun stuff" with the family. After dinner, I'd bring the kids up to the nursery to play/watch a video until 10:30/11 at the latest.

Note: While Momboss is VERY considerate and friendly, she's never gotten anywhere close to the whole "nanny as a family" thing. At the same time, I'm a recent divorcee and I think this was her attempt to make sure I'm not alone for the first Christmas post-divorce. HOWEVER, please know I'm not naive enough to think I'll be sitting there chit-chatting while the parents chase their own kids.

What is a fair price to ask?

24 comments:

ericsmom said...

Don't do it!!! Not worth. Stay home and watch some good Life Time Christmas movies!! With a glass of wine

ericsmom said...

Just watch out. Alot of parents say they will help out. But when it comes down to it. They don't. I am afraid you could end up trying to take care of the whole clan. Trust me been there done that.

And yes you are not going to have a peaceful dinner. More likely you will be an extra set of hands to help out with the kids. Its always uncomfortable being in these kind of situations.

First make sure that someone will really be there to help you out. And not a bunch of talk.

If you are happy with $15 per hour which is low. Maybe, they can hire someone to help you out during the nite.

I think it would be better to have another sitter there as well.

OP here said...

I need the money so I will be working the party.
I want more than $15 and MomBoss is going to pay more (money's not a significant issue for this family) but didn't know how much, thus this post.
I know I won't be caring for all the children by myself because I'll be alone in the house with just the infants for the first 1.5/2 hours, then I'll be upstairs feeding/putting them to sleep (based off past experience, with at least grandma) during which time the sister-in-law is planning the older kids' craft. I'd only be with the rest of the family and kids after the infants are asleep around 6:30/7 until 10:30/11.

I*tsMe said...

It's Christmas Eve and it's a lot of kids, $20 per hour minimum, but, I would ask for $25 an hour.

Hudson's Mommy said...

I would usually have a different response, but since you already wrote back and you are for sure taking this gig, I'll just share the amount I think you should ask for. I honestly believe you should ask for 25-30 dollars an hour. That's a bunch of kids, it's a big holiday.. and truly you could be doing something else.

If these people have any soul and actually care that you are recently divorced and want you to spend the holiday with someone (which if they did, they should hire a baby sitter and let you enjoy the holiday with them as a friend, not a worker.. but okay...) anyways, they should be happy to pay you extra for the night. Little extra holiday cash, you're not alone.. everyone works out. I hope it all works out for you.

Anonymous said...

I think asking double your regular salary is a good idea. Christmas is huge and that is a whole lot of kids. Add to that the sugar induced excitement that will most likely be present in the older kids and you will earn every penny. Good luck and Merry Christmas!

VAnanny said...

The above post was mine. Sorry!

NannyMD said...

I think it speaks volumes about this family that they realized $15/hr wasn't going to cut it!

:)

nycnanny said...

I would say at least $25/hour. That is a lot of children and its the holidays-you need to make it worth your while! Good luck.

Village said...

$250 Flat rate. Anything else is taking advantage of you. 8 children at $10 a head is $80 an hour. $250 barely reflects three hours. $250 Flat rate. Make it worth your time. Don't let MomBoss take advantage of you. The reason all those children are coming is because they can't find child care on Christmas Eve. Don't do it for less. You deserve holiday rates. And you are right. They are pretending you can come to Christmas so you can watch their kids. I'm beginning to wonder if $250 is enough.

just another mommy said...

So the way I count it, you will have 3 kids (the triplets) for the first 3 hours and then 5 kids for the next 4 hours.

So, for the triplets, I would go for $20 an hour for 3 hours being $60 and then for the others I would go for $35 an hour for the next 4 hours being a total of $140 so total would be about $200.

Or you could just charge the $250 flat rate fee...that would probably work out well.

Ravenswood Nanny said...

You can make $200-$300 flat rate for New Year's Even here in Chicago. I'd say that would be appropriate for Christmas Eve as well.

Been There, Wouldn't Do It Again said...

I agree with those who are saying double your regular rate or $250 for the night.

Some food for thought:
-The kids will be sugared up and excited...probably not on their best behavior
-The kids will be up late...again, probably not on their best behavior.
-There are a lot of kids who have to get along with each other in a home that's not their own when they are tired, etc. This may prove very challenging for everyone involved.
-There is no designated ending time, so a flat rate may not be the best option moneywise.
-You want to stay on good terms with the family (assumed) for future work...so charge enough that you will be satisfied even with all of the potential challenges involved but not so much that they feel you are asking too much.

I hope they do show how much they appreciate you and make you part of the family, at least for this one night.

Seasons greetings, and best wishes!

just another mommy said...

Been there has a good point about the flat rate not working so well if there is no for sure end time. Maybe you could say flat rate until 11:00 and then xamount per hour after that. Knowing our own family, we tend to lose track of times when we're all together on holidays.

ChiNanny said...

I find it odd that these people don't want to spend Christmas Eve with their children.

That said. I would ask for a flat rate, then extra per hour if it goes past 11. $250 sounds fair. The kids will be excited and wound up with the excitement, so it's going to be a tough job. Good luck!

CuriousDad said...

Working on a holiday is worth at least overtime in most business. SO I would quote them double time or if your in a generous mood time and half for your work.
I try not to work holidays myself anymore, since whether I am working or not, on them I do not get paid overtime. LOL, On those days I get jealous of my guys becuase they will be making hourly more then me. ;)

seattle said...

You could do a flat rate, but then anything after 11:00 (or whenever you are supposed to be "done") could be at like $20-30/hr. Or something reasonable.

Yaya said...

Yup, I was thinking $20-$25/hour. Totally reasonable.

missaustin said...

I agree with the rates posted already. The agencies here look like they would be charging around $25/hr for that number of children on a holiday; on top of that would be the agency fee so most people for this type of situation would pay at least $25-30/hr.

OP said...

I decided to ask $25/hour. MB accepted and then asked me to work this Saturday and Sunday for $250/day. So I guess it was the perfect amount :) Thanks!

oh well said...

Hey OP, thanks for the update - it's always nice to know how stories unfold. Happy Holidays!

xiao nanny said...

Anytime I'm in an expanded care situation, where I have more than my usual charges to care for, I get $20 an hour.

On the other hand:

1. I've never done expanded care on Christmas Eve.

2. Most infants I've cared for at any given time was two. Three is stretching things.

xiao nanny said...

Oops! I should have read the whole thread. $25 an hour sounds perfectly reasonable OP. :)

nannyinmanhattan said...

I do $25 an hour, its usually not a problem.