23 December, 2011

Christmas Pictures, Images and Photos
If you are a Nanny and would like to share with us what you received for a bonus this year, please
email us or send a message using MEEBO. If you are an Employer and would like us to know what you are giving your Nanny as a bonus this year, we want to hear from you, too.


PLEASE INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:
* Bonus this year (2011):
* Your weekly salary:
* Any supplementary gifts aside from the Bonus:
* Length of time you have worked for the Family:
* City, State and Country where you live:
* Any additional comments:

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21 December, 2011

beware 3
I just wanted to share a terrible experience we had with a Filipino nanny who used us to get out of the Philippines, took our money, lied, and ran away a month and a half after she started her contract.

Her name is Malouchie (last name withheld) and goes by the name Malou. She was born on 31 Aug 1977 and her passport number is (withheld). I am attaching a picture and a passport copy of her. We live in Cyprus at the moment. I am from Cyprus and my husband is American. We have a 7-month old baby boy. Since I work in the medical field, I didn’t have the chance to take a year or two from work to stay home and raise my child. In my profession the field advances so quickly that taking time off would most likely be the end of your career. Since I have invested so much in my education and career, I didn’t want to do that. In Cyprus, unlike other western countries, there are no reliable nanny agencies where you can see the references of the person you want to work with before you hire them. There are people who find nannies but your chance of finding someone good is 50/50.

So, when a government employee who works for the local work permit office told me that he knew a Filipino who wanted to come to Cyprus and work, and that she had childcare experience, I was excited. I had been looking for somebody locally for the last 3 months and I had been disappointed over and over again, so I was intrigued. I got in touch with this person via Skype. She gave me all the answers that I wanted to hear. She said she took care of a boy from 3-months to 3 years in Ankara, Turkey for a French family. She had a son herself and loved boys. She had worked in a Spa for her last job (with her mom who is a reputable masseuse) but didn’t like it since men who had interests other than “just a massage” came to the Spa and she didn’t work in that area. When I told her we had a dog that is a big part of our family, she said “I will have two babies then”. I thought that we finally hit jackpot.

I spent a couple of months getting all the paperwork ready in order to bring her to Cyprus. A big part of that was to get a transit visa to Turkey for her since she would have had to fly to Cyprus from there. In Turkey, they are supposedly very strict with issuing transit visas to Filipinos since they lie to enter Turkey and then work there illegally. So they asked for a contract, which we prepared and sent to her, to read it over and agree to it. She agreed to everything. Meanwhile, I asked her to get her medical tests done since HIV, Hepatitis and some other tests are required in order to have a work permit issued here. She asked for money to get her tests done, for traveling to the Capital and for her POEA papers there-in total $600. I gave them to her without questioning her, she said we could deduct it from her paycheck when she gets here. I had also told her we would pay for her plane ticket to come here, we just wanted her to fulfill her 2-year contract.

Long story short, she finally made it to Cyprus. While she was here working for us, we paid for her everything-from her toothbrush to her cellphone. She had her own room with cable and DVD player and her own bathroom in our house. We just wanted her to be good to our son, and not much else. We have a housekeeper that cleans our place once a week, so I didn’t expect her to do much cleaning (which most live-in nannies do in Cyprus). She was very good with our son. We were very pleased with that and were willing to do anything to keep her happy. We order take out often from expensive restaurants and we always asked her what she wanted and got her anything she asked for. I always asked if she wanted something from supermarket and went out of my way to get them. When we went out to eat as a family, we always took her along. We treated her as part of our family. She never ever said thank you and always acted as if it was our duty to get her whatever she wanted. We so desperately wanted a good nanny for our son that we overlooked all her flaws.

After a month and a half of working for us, she made up a lie that she was drunk and couldn’t come home (!) on her off day. We realized a day later that was a plot she made up in order to distract us from the fact that she was actually on a flight to Turkey. She escaped leaving most of her belongings in our house. She took some of her things and made up a lie as to why she was taking them. It looks like she wanted to work in Turkey, I am guessing not as a nanny, and she used us to get out of the Philipines (since Filipinos cannot leave their country now without a valid contract etc). She took our money. She had us pay for her ticket. She took advantage of us. I am just glad we only spent one and a half months with such an evil person living with us and not a year or two.

She is now living in Turkey illegally. I am writing this so that a manipulative liar like this will not be able to take advantage of innocent families like us. One may come from a poor country but that shouldn’t prevent her from making an honest living.
cyprus_nanny

Stop the Insanity!

opinion 1
I have been a mothers helper for 3 (now 3, 5, 7) children in a little ritchie town in Essex County NJ. The mother is a stay at home mom and the father is always gone for buisness trips so far no big deal. I have been their help since March. They have 2 sitters a morning sitter and me (the afterschool/ night time sitter) The morning sitter for 6 years broke her hip in the summer so for 2 weeks I took on all the hours from the moment all three children woke up to when they go to bed (which killed me to be quiet honost cause it was from 7am-10PM) They have a cleaning service come every friday! Now before sitter AM broke her hip my job was to straighten up (dishes and laundry and sweep the kitchen floor) Now that the new morning sitter is back (she was once the PM sitter but she had a son) shes like a clean-a-holic so when I get there every day the house is spotless which we never signed a contract for but I feel like its a constant battle between us like shes always outdoing me. Granted I had a better relationship with the morning sitter when I first started working she was older and close to retirement though.

This is my first "full time" nanny position so granted I am stupid for not having a real contract with everything laid out. However my hours in the beginning were only suppose to be 245-9:00/9:30 (pick up the oldest from school and stay with all 3 until they all go to bed) and 7am on Sat to about 4pm. Since I had a great relationship with the morning sitter I am trying now to have a good relationship with MB after all she is a stay at home mom. However these last 2 weeks as i'm trying to develope a relationship hasnt been going to well. MB broke her arm so she has been on percasets and a royle bitch. I try filling her in on the little things in my life and shes now attempting to be a mother to me for example I mentioned to her I am going back to college (during the morning- it won't affect my schedual with her in any way) and she is trying to tell me what to take etc etc. To find out small things like confirming what to make the kids for dinner she doesnt pick up her phone i send her a text and she bitches at me IN TEXT cause her arm hurts. Her car is in the shop and she can't drive so she begged me to come early to drive her around and she frowned upon my car because its not as nice as hers and told me to get a nicer car or "safer" car for when I need to drive her kids in it! Thank god my fiance is being generous enough to allow me to take his for the past 2 weeks.

Another thing that has bothered me is the fact Ok her arm is fractured not technically broken but she had me stay til 7pm on Sat to wrap all of her xmas presents and yelled at me because they weren't too her liking the way I wrapped them and she couldn't keep up with which presents were from who and got stressed out and freaked on me. Thats another thing I went to starbucks because she wanted me to come in at 12 on my day off (and of course I will I need the money) and I offered to buy her an ice coffee (sent her a text- she didn't respond and didnt answer her phone) so i assumed she was busy or didn't want one. I brought mine inside and she yelled at me saying that shes generous and how DARE I bring my coffee in Her house!

Long story short I love the kids to death! S just learned to be potty trained A is learning how to read and L is a little dancer theater girl who is going to a french school they are all bright.

Mommy has the children wear pull ups to bed and other things that makes me question her way but same point i have to do her way or else i am out of a job. Most of the time she is out running errands or taking this one to one class and the other to another class. She pays 15 an hour cash and I do work between 30-40 hours a week making 500+ so it is VERY Awsome money in this economy. From another view is this too much insanity for being a nanny? I am new at this and I am curious as to weather or not this is normal?

Nanny Wants to go the Extra Mile

opinion 1
I am a well-educated nanny who recently starting working for a wonderful family (week before Halloween). I have a wonderful relationship with the parents and kids. It is a dream job and I couldn’t be happier.

A few days into the start of the job, I was introduced to the MB’s best friend (also the across street neighbor), N. Now, one time in the last few weeks, N came over and started telling me a lot of MB. Nothing bad, but obviously things that MB had told her in confidence. I knew she wasn’t suppose to tell me. About my charges, MB’s job, and so forth. N then confronted MB and told her what she had done. She told her everything that she had told me - all but one thing. MB was not happy and couldn’t speak to this friend for several days.

Now I know of a few medical issues that my 2 year old charge has - but not the diagnosis. N told me that my two year old charge may have the same thing his mom has. MB is very sensitive about her condition - if she has one. N told me this.

My question is - should I ask her about it? If my charge does have this condition I would be able to do research. I would be able to help him with skills, learning, and communication in more effective ways. Or should I just leave it and let MB come to me? Should I tell MB what else N had told me about my 2 year old charge? I know I should just leave it alone but I want to help this child more effectively. But I also don’t want to add fuel to the fire. Thank you.

E-mail Etiquette

opinion 1
I have a part time nanny job, have had it for almost a year now. The family left for vacation yesterday, therefore I am currently on vacation as well. Today I was offered a full time job (not child care related), which begins next week, and I want to take it. Is it extremely wrong to quit over email ASAP? This would give the family exactly two weeks to find someone. I hate that they are on vacation, and it's the holidays, but I don't have much choice. Despite it being a decent job, with a lot of respect, I didn't really click with the children (three of them), and while I think they have no problem with me, I am also not going to be remembered as a favorite nanny. Is an email acceptable in this case? I feel terrible, but I am also not looking to be a career nanny, and want to take this new job.

No Thanks, I'm Taken!

opinion 1
I applied to over 100 nannying jobs on craigslist with the idea that a lot of them wouldn't get back to me. For the first week, I got about 10 responses and I'm seriously considering a couple of them. However, there's been a steadier flow of interest and if I'm on the verge of taking a job, how do I turn down people who call or email me? I feel bad disappointing them, but I'm taken!

Tips and Tricks

opinion 1
I am new to being a nanny and I was wondering if you all could offer some tips on setting up a portfolio, resume, and contract for interviews. I've been in childcare for 4 years (3 in daycare and just this last year as a nanny/sitter with temp jobs) and I've always let the family decide pay and duties. I know with my next job I'll need something more consistent as far as salary goes. Is it out of bounds to have a weekly minimum salary and they pay me even if they decide to take a day off? Something like $13.50/hr for 40 hrs a week, so $540 gross between set hours.

16 December, 2011

Going Down?

opinion dec
While in a busy Wal-Mart my charge decided she wanted to use the elevator to go to the lower level. I noticed a mother and baby were already in the elevator and the door was closing.. I waited for 30 seconds, the door closed fully, and I felt it was safe to allow my charge to press the button to make the elevator come back up. She pressed it! To my surprise the elevator opened up and it was clear we had delayed the mother/baby from doing down. We quickly hopped in the elevator and apologized; briefly explaining that I had thought they had went down already. My charge, 3 years old, is a huge fan of babies! She went over to the lady's baby, and as I have taught her, asked before making moves on anything or anyone said "may I touch your baby" by this she meant "shake her hand, a pat or something very gentle and innocent" the baby had her hand outreached in my charges direction... and the LADY FREAKED OUT! and began talking sternly in my charge's face.... "DONT TOUCH MY BABY, DON"T LOOK AT MY BABY. YOU CANT JUST GO AROUND TOUCHING PEOPLE AND THINGS!!!"

My charge was shocked, looked up at me with tears in her eyes. I was horrifed by how the lady was speaking to her. The elevator had finally closed and lowered. The door opened, and the lady stepped out. My charge was off in dreamland, probably trying to figure everything out, and I questioned the lady asking her "What is up her ass?" She replied, "You could have used the escalator" ...and stormed off. I called her ridiculous and walked away. I used this situation as a lesson for my charge, and explained to her that not all strangers are nice... and this is exactly why we don't talk to strangers, that if I or an adult says its okay then proceed, but please don't talk to any and everyone [which is a hard request for a female 3 year old]. I also apologized for that happening to her, she looked at me and deemed that the lady was 'crazy'. LOL, and we went about our Santa Photo's. But still, it took a lot of self control not to loose it on that lady!

Have you ever been in a situation where a perfect stranger is beyond rude to your charge? What did you do? What would you have done if you were me in the elevator yesterday?

Prized Nanny Surprised Housekeeper Cleaned Up with Xmas Bonus

opinion dec
Okay...maybe I am being petty, but am I allowed to be a little confused/insulted that my MB and DB give the housekeeper a holiday bonus, but not me, their nanny? I am always told I do a wonderful job and we have a great relationship so I just was a little surprised. It really isn't a huge deal and I don't want to sound like I am just in this for the money... absolutely not the case, but I did just want to throw this out there and see what y'all think!

"Just a Nanny" Knows What Works...

rant 1
I've been a nanny for years now and time and time again I see the same thing: people discrediting me simply because I'm "just a nanny". Everyone nanny knows that her job with the various families she cares for allow her to put a variety of parenting styles that most people only read about into actual practice. We see a lot. I saw a five year old who didn't know how to feed herself ( cultural...) and dealt with severe childhood anger disorders. We learn what works and what doesn't. We know every trick to get a child to eat and have potty trained dozens. So why doesn't our opinion matter? If we had our own children you can be sure it would.

When my husbands cousin got a girl pregnant who just couldn't seem to lay off the cigarettes or weed, I became the bad guy. Why? Because I was quick to point out that it wasn't a good thing. Public knowledge! But of course she told me I was " just a nanny". The child is three now and extremely ill mannered... but being just a nanny I keep my mouth shut.

At family functions when all of my cousins gather around and talk kids, I offer my input to a group of rolled eyes and "oh you are still doing the nanny thing?". I can't even share a funny story or recommend a children's museum without being completely ignored. And we nannies know how it is at playgroups or libraries... once they find out you are the nanny... prepare to be shunned.

Does anyone realize I have parented a total of 12 kids... from newborn to teen. How many women in their twenties can say that? My own father tells me I should get a real job. And my mother frets over if I will ever have kids of my own. Being a nanny is the best thing that has ever happened to me. And by the time I have kids... I will know every trick. But I can tell you right now... I have no desire to join mommy cliques or parent forums. You have treated me like dirt for doing the same thing you do... parent and love your kids.

Penny For Your Thoughts?

opinion dec
I'm not sure where/if this is something I can post on I Saw Your Nanny. I'm just now getting into the blog, and I very much love it! I think it is a great tool to help nannies and parents alike! I hope it keeps gaining popularity!

I moved from Idaho to Syracuse with my fiance for his graduate school in August and began working for this family right after - a little over 4 months now. The family and I began talking last March (she found me on sittercity.com) as it was planned MB would go back to work from maternity leave in August. Our dates matched up, the only issue was because I was living in Idaho I wasn't able to do a face to face interview. We skyped a few times. Anyway, she basically 'hired' me online (my references are amazing, which is why she didn't just find someone local, and I was VERY persistent) but made it clear we wouldn't sign the contract until actually meeting incase either of us felt uncomfortable with the other. What I'm trying to mainly get at is that we have been talking/getting to know each other since March. I have worked for her for only 4 months but because of the extended pre hiring process I feel much closer to her than I would someone who I had only known four months. The job is wonderful and I couldn't have gotten any luckier. The 1 year old baby is amazing and perfect in every way. He makes me excited to go to work every day. I just wanted to give you a little preview of my situation before I ask my question.

Should I get my employers a Christmas gift?! I didn't with my past employers, but we didn't have as close of a relationship. I got my past charges presents, but would have felt awkward giving ones to MB and DB. The toddler (so sad he can be called a toddler now!!) and I are making a hand print picture frame and I'm putting an adorable 5X7 photo of him in it for a present from him to MB and DB, and I got baby some skill building toys. I'm a sucker for any toy that can also help learn! But should I also get Parents something?? MB LOVES my wallet, I was thinking about getting a similar one for her?? Opinion from nannies or parents desperately welcomed!! Thanks!

New Year Benefits?

rant 1
Hi, I guess I basically need to vent. I made a year earlier in the week and with every family I have been with and every nanny I know, benefits (sick days, vacation days, etc) start all over the day we began. However, with this particular family (who have a lack of communication) just informed me today that my benefits do not begin again until January 1st.

I took yesterday off because of an eye infection to go to the doctor. So, DB tells me about the benefits and I let him know that I started a year ago Tuesday and that I thought that is when my benefits started all over. He said he was annoyed at MB because now he is in the middle of this. THE MIDDLE OF WHAT? MB and I never discussed this. He then states that he understands what I am talking about because that is how it normally works (benefits begin again the day you started) and that he will talk to MB it.

My question is does everyones benefits start January 1st no matter what date you started or do your benefits start over the day you started? Also, my benefits began the day I started, I did not have to accrue anything.

L.A. Nanny

opinion dec
I am a 26 year old former nanny. I have my Bachelors Degree in Early Childhood/Elementary Education and over 14 years of childcare experience and was a stellar nanny. I worked with one family as a full time nanny from 12/08-6/10 and another from 8/10-5/11. I left the first family because both kiddies were starting school full time. The second family I had to leave because I was working for them part time and was offered a full time promotion with benefits (I had an additional part time job at night.) I can honestly say that I had fabulous experiences with both families and continue to see them regularly as I love them to pieces. Currently, I still work full time in Philadelphia but recently decided to relocate to LA with my long-term boyfriend some time in May. At that point, I have decided to start nannying again. I need to find a well paying job, especially since I will need to pay for my own medical insurance along with my share of more expensive rent and all the other expenses coming our way. I am psyched about getting back to nannying, I genuinely miss it.

My question is this: I am terrified to move to LA without a job lined up. Is there any good way to go about this? I have started contacting families through all the typical nanny websites, and while I never had any trouble finding work in the past it seems next to impossible to find a position in advance from across the country. I am planning to make a trip out to LA some time in February or March to look for housing and was hoping to have some interviews lined up, but so far no real bites. Any advice would be very much appreciated!

Remote 10-Day Vacay

opinion dec
Question in regards to traveling with family...I'm wondering if anyone has traveled with their family and stayed in a big house that doesn't have much access to anything else outside the house. We're going to a tropical location and they've rented a house with friends and their nanny but we just found out that the house is in a somewhat remote location. Yikes! I'm just looking for pointers so that I can stay sane for our 10 day vacay. I've traveled with them before but we've always stayed in hotels and I feel like there are more boundaries that way. Any advice is appreciated :) Thanks!

Recommendations?

opinion dec
How did you all find your current position? I an currently a live-in nanny in North Carolina, and I found my position on gonannies.com...which was just one of the handful of nanny websites I was a member of during my job search. I'm just curious as to where/how you all found your current positions...were you on similar sites to gonannies or nannies4hire, or did you go through an agency? Those who went through an agency: would you recommend doing so?

08 December, 2011

DB Violates Nanny's Privacy

opinion dec
Sorry if this post is not well organized, but I am in complete shock and need some advice. I started a new job a few months ago, and it's been just fine. The parents are fine, the children (from here on out, the older is B and the younger is C) are fine, I'm not in love with this job, but up until right now, there was nothing not to like. Since I'm still new-ish, the parents stop home unannounced from time to time. I would do the same thing in their shoes. Today, B was at school and C was napping. C has been a little under the weather, and was waking up a lot to cough. I was going upstairs to administer some cough syrup, and saw DB walk in the door. I said hello, told him what was going on, and continued upstairs. I heard him move around a bit and then leave -- nothing out of the ordinary -- but when I went downstairs, I noticed my purse was about a foot away from where I had left it, wide open, and my wallet was halfway out. Nothing was missing, but he clearly went through it. I feel violated. What do I do now?

Lazy MB Leaves Nanny Feeling Lethargic

opinion dec
I am a nanny with 15 months of childcare experience. I am trying to go to college part time as well. I have worked for a family for 11 months now and have been having some issues. I am a live in nanny and get paid $200 a week. I signed a year contract and it is up next month. I watch eight year old triplets, 2 boys and a girl. Both boys are autistic. One can talk and one can’t, and the one that can talk is in pull-ups still. I originally only had to watch the children, clean up after them, make sure they do their homework, give them baths, and do their laundry.

I know it is hard to work with autistic children and didn’t expect anything different, but I was told they were well behaved but sometimes they would have crying fits if they got mad or if they got hurt. I have been hit several times, my hair has been pulled, I have been kicked on many occasions, and my chest has been grabbed multiple times. I try to explain to the boys that it is not good behavior and it isn’t nice to do those things to people, then I send them to time out for eight minutes. The mother has seen this happen several times and has done nothing to discipline or explain to them that it’s not good behavior.

I have 6 hours a day during the week without the children during the school year. But during that time I am cleaning up the kitchen, doing the children’s laundry, family sheets and towels, and grocery shopping. The children’s jeans and shirts have to be ironed every time I do the laundry. I can’t be far from the house during school hours because at least twice a week I have to go to the school and drop of a change of clothes, medicine, snacks, or pick up a sick child. I also have to clean the children’s bathroom weekly and make sure their rooms are clean. I have no vacation time but I have every other major Holiday off. I did not get paid more during the summer for watching the children all day or a bonus for working a Holiday. I only have every other weekend off as well. When I do get a Holiday off I get the day of the Holiday off nothing else. For Thanksgiving I had to work on my weekend off to get Thanksgiving off (Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday) so I could visit family out of state. The mother told me I now owe her a day for getting that Friday off. The mother is also never really around... she goes out shopping, has bible class, visits friends, and gets her nails done weekly. I make breakfast, lunch, and heat up what the mother makes for dinner for the week, I put the children to bed and if they wake up in the middle of the night I am up with them.

When the mother is home she talks about how tired she is and then just stays in her room or on the phone until after the kids are in bed. On the weekends I work sometimes, the boys will wake her up to play or eat breakfast and she tells them to get me because she is tired. All they want is to spend time with her and I have told her this but she says she is busy. After I get back from my weekends off I find that the kitchen is a mess, the dishes are only half done. If I get back before the kids are in bed then I am taking care of them until bed and during the night.

I want to talk to the mother when my contract is up about having every weekend off, and getting at least a $200 weekly raise. So I would make $400 or more a week instead of $200. I also want to have every major Holiday off and the days that she has off work for a Holiday off I get off. I love the kids when they are not having fits or hitting, kicking, and grabbing. I like to help them with homework, and teach the one that can’t talk how to talk. I like doing science projects and playing dolls and house with the girl. I also like to take the kids outside and go on walks with them. I just don’t know how to go about talking to their mother about these things without her getting defensive. I am also not sure what amount I can ask for without being unreasonable.

What are your Limits?

opinion dec
How Much Are You Spending On your Charge’s Christmas?

In recent years, I’ve sort of set a $50 - $75 limit on what I spend for my charge’s presents, although I admit it’s not written in stone. I have spent as much as $150 for an only-child. I send past charges $25 gift certificates on their birthdays and at Christmas time as well. This is usually what happens to my Christmas bonus. Consequently, what I value more than bonuses is simply being left alone (childless) during holidays.

This year I’m doing something different. My two oldest charges (both girls, ages 3 and 5) share a bedroom and have stated numerous times that they wish it was pink. Their mother purchased new curtains and linens in an attempt to pacify her daughters’ request, but to little avail, because the older child insists on having pink walls too. I figured that since the girls were visiting relatives 3 days prior to Christmas, a room makeover might be in order. I asked the children’s mother if it could be my present to them since they already have so much stuff that buying toys seems more out of obligation than genuine sentiment. Mom agreed. I have a friend who owns a paint store, so the supplies are cheap enough. I expect to spend less than an additional $100 on bric-a-brac. Total cost: $200 plus a day’s labor. In all honesty, the day’s labor really shouldn’t be a factor because I still receive salary whenever the girls are away, so in essence, what I’m actually out of pocket is a day off. I personally don’t consider this too much in light of how well the family provides for me above and beyond what is expected. I might also add that I have considerable experience in building and design. Painting 4 walls and a ceiling is a walk in the park.

Do you have limits on how much to spend on your charge’s Christmas presents?

Picking Battles is Causing a War for this Nanny

opinion dec
Hi, I'm a nanny and would like you to post this on the website so that I can get some opinions/advice. I've not written to you before so I'm not sure if this is how I go about it!

I am a nanny for an American family, in England. This is my first nanny job, but not my first childcare job. I look after a girl, 5 and a boy, 4. The girl is at school all day and the boy is home with me. I'll call the girl S. I have been working with this family for nearly 4 months now. Everything was perfect.. Until last week. S is a difficult child and will throw big tantrums when she doesn't get her own way, but I was still really enjoying the job. I picked S up from school and brought her home, mum was working from home, which she occasionally does but its very rare. Mum asked me to help S get changed so that they can go out for dinner. While getting her changed S notices her favourite dress is missing, I tell her that mum took it because it was too small, S gets angry at this. I try to help S take off her cardigan and S screams "IM NOT A BABY DONT HELP ME" -- maybe the way I replied to this was wrong, but I said "well if you're going to act like a baby I'm going to treat you like a baby" mum then walks into the room and says to me "you can't get down to her level and bicker with her like that!" S then goes on to tell mum that she said "please don't help me get changed I want to do it myself" this is the first time I have heard S lie to her mum, and I didn't want to be petty and call her out on it. Mum goes on to explain to S that she needs to be respectful of me and that even though she is in the house, I am still in charge.

So that settles down and we get to yesterday. S was an angel all day which was a lovely change. Mum gets home from work and says that she and dad want to speak to me and could I wait around. We sit down to chat and they say "we were putting the children to bed last night and S said that you pushed her at the train station, and J (brother,4) said that you did too" Let me just start by saying that I have never pushed a child, and never would. I knew the situation that the children were talking about, we had gotten of off the train and S was trying to turn around to wave to her friends still on the train, but we were on a train platform full of people and where S kept stopping to wave, people were walking into her and getting frustrated. I put my hand on S back, and guided her along the platform. S said to me "don't push me! I'm telling mum" I said to S "I'm not pushing you I'm guiding you" and nothing more was said from either of us. Mum and Dad said that they believe that I didn't push her, and in the future if they say anything like that then to just text mum and tell her.

Well today on the school run, we get off of the train and I ask S to hold my hand, the response I get is "whyyyy do I have to hold your hand, I don't want to hold your hand, etc etc" by this time I've already had a bad morning with her, and I say in a stern voice "because I said you do" I am then told "You shouted in my face! I'm telling mummy" J then says "you're being mean to us I'm telling mummy" -- J is usually a little angel with me, practically perfect, but when he is with his sister he copies everything she does. So now I've texted mum and told her, as I was told to, but I feel like if I'm to text mum every time I get a "I'm telling mummy" then I'm going to be texting mum an awful lot!

Also, it is my job to do the childrens laundry, and I'm pretty good with it and do a wash at least everyday. Last week I put some trousers on J that were too small. Mum says he can't go out wearing them and that "we" need to keep on top of the washing so that there are always trousers that fit. This was a monday, I don't work weekends and had done a wash on friday, so how was this me not keeping on top of the washing! Little things like this bug me, and I just needed somewhere to vent for this one.

Mum has told me to "pick my battles" with S, but the way she is I feel like every time she misbehaves I should pull her up on it. I understand that S is a child and probably misbehaves because she wants her mum, but this morning she actually brought me to tears, and its made me for the first time, think that I don't like this job.

05 December, 2011

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Monday, December 5, 2011
We have received many requests to repeat the Annual Nanny Bonus Survey. If you are a Nanny and would like to share with us what you received for a bonus this year, please email us or send us a message using MEEBO. If you are an Employer and would like us to know what you are giving your Nanny as a bonus this year, we want to hear from you, too.

Please Include:
* Bonus this year (2011):
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To read ISYN Bonus Surveys from previous years, click below:
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2006 - Part I December 2006
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2006 - Part II December 2006
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2007 - Part I December 2007
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2007 - Part II December 2007
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2008 - Part I December 2008
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2008 - Part II December 2008
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2009 - Part I December 2009
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2009 - Part II December 2009
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2010 - Part I December 2010
Holiday Bonus Feature, 2010 - Part II December 2010
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Nanny Sightings Needed
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* You may also send in Questions, Nanny/Employer Horror Stories, Rants/Raves, A Day in the Life...

Former Employer's Idle Mind Causing Mayhem

opinion dec
I nannied for a family last year for almost a year. I was nothing but professional, and loving to their child. I did not sign a confidentiality agreement so ultimately everything that happened, and the way they treated me is fair game in terms of disclosure. I did ended up quitting (there was no contract), because I reached my limit with the way the mother condescended me, and put me down constantly. However the care I provided for their child never failed, and I always loved/treated him as if he was my own. As a result of her own personal issues she has taken it upon herself to keep me from getting a job, or at least attempt. I am not interested in suing, because I have a high standard of morals, but I am honestly growing tired of her scandals.

What can I do from here? I have already been hired by a new loving family, but I am growing concerned she'll stop at nothing to tarnish my name to fulfill her time. She has a new full-time nanny, but does not work, or go to school, volunteer, or really much of any thing, and I am concerned that her idle mind is contributing to her obscene behavior. Please advise...

Selfless Nanny Wants Raise From Money Conscious Family

opinion dec
I need some advice! I’ve been working as a full-time nanny for a family for the past eight months. I love them, they are wonderful, and we have become like family. I signed my contract at $12/hour, which I knew was a little low but I really wanted the job and I figured I would just ask for a raise later on. My fiancee has been nagging me a lot for the past few months because I work too hard and don’t get paid enough. Essentially, I am also their maid – I clean the entire house, laundry, dinner prep, have to clean up after them in the kitchen each morning, etc. I would like to ask for a raise to $15/hour, which I believe is fair and is what I deserve for the amount of work I’m doing. The family is very money conscious, so I’m a bit nervous about this.

Here’s the other thing – I work 55 hours per week. With what I’m making now, I could be working a minimum wage job and be making the same exact amount of money with the same hours. Do you think it’s too much for me to ask for a raise of $15/hour PLUS overtime? I commute a half our each way to work. I have to get up at 4:15am if I want to go to the gym. I literally have 2-3 waking hours each day where I’m not at work. I don’t have time for a life outside of their life. I think I should put a price on the amount of personal time I sacrifice. For example – all of my own errands, laundry, cleaning, etc. has to be done during the weekend because I don’t have time during the week – so even my days off are catch-up days for myself. I know I might be essentially quitting with asking for such an increase in pay, but I really think I deserve it. I’m going to honor my contract either way for the next few months (it’s a year-long contract).

Should I wait until the contract is up or tell them I’d like to talk about it in the next few weeks? I just don’t want to wait until the last minute and then they only have two weeks to find a new nanny. It would also give me more time to find a new job if we were to sit down earlier. And even if they say no, I’m still going to honor my contract. I need some advice from more experienced nannies! I feel torn because I love this family but I can’t let my attachment to them negatively impact my financial situation – it would be selfish!

MB Maternity Pay for Nanny...

opinion dec
I have been a nanny for a little boy since he was 2 months old. He is now almost two and a half. I love the family I nanny for. They give me lots of paid days off. They are just amazing. The question is, they are due with their 2nd kid in the beginning of February. How do you handle maternity leave? It has kind of been brought up a couple of times, and we are thinking I will go spend time with the boy a couple times a week, but how should pay work and everything like that? Does anyone have any suggestions?

01 December, 2011

Screamin' Demons

opinion dec
!! I need advice!! I just finished high school and i took a year off, so i decided i wanted to babysit overseas. So my aunt told me if i wanted to come to Switzerland to babysit my two cousins and take German lessons, of course i said yes!! So I traveled all the way to Switzerland thinking it was going to be great, but then i arrived and discovered that two little demons replaced my two lovable cousins. Literally they bring out the worst of me!! The 5 year old talks back, she is rude and i simply can't stand her sometimes, and the 3 year old just wants his mom, like i can't do anything with and for him cause he turns crazy!! And of course i cant deal with him and when something isn't done my aunt says it's my fault. Really i'm fed up with this!! And when she talked me into this, she told me that my job would be taking care of the kids, and doing all the house activities that involved them, such as keeping their room clean, making their beds, picking up after them and doing their laundry, but then i arrived and she has me doing all the family's laundry, vacuuming, making dinner, cleaning the cats sandbox (she didn't tell me they had 2 cats), cleaning the dishes, making me work extra hours without payment, cleaning the kitchen, even wrapping my cousins' friends birthday presents!! I'm tired as hell!! I mean, i could carry baby Kangaroos with the bags and dark circles under my eyes!! I feel like they're taking advantage of me, but i don't know if telling them how I feel is the right thing to do cause I live in their house and eat their food after all... and i don't have any full-time babysitter friend to ask what the normal activities are... WHAT SHOULD I DO!!????? I'M DESPERATE!!!!

Pass the Word...

opinion dec
Hello. Is this at all possible? Have had a major issue with a nanny a few moms in my state have hired without knowing she has been on this site before for bad nanny mentions and the local nanny agencies have been warned. How do you keep tragedy from happening to another family or at least make it known before another family hires again? Thanks! Love this website.

Nanny is in a Financial Dilemma

opinion dec
I am new here and have found the posts to be very helpful, and entertaining at times. :) Here is my dilemma that I am finally getting up the courage to post here. I am a nanny with 10+ years of experience, and I recently just started my own nanny placement agency, which is actually doing better than I could have hoped. I have been with the family I work for for a year, and I love them dearly. We have all become very close, and I care about them and their little guy (my charge) very much.

When I began working with them, we agreed upon an hourly rate of $12.50. I was originally to be in a nanny share with them and another family. I worked with each family on alternating days. About 3 months into my position, the family I currently work for had a devastating house fire and pretty much lost everything in the middle of the night. They were lucky enough to have a house that their parents rent out as a small vacation home nearby that they could stay at as they battled their insurance company. At that same time, the other family backed out of the nanny share agreement, leaving me and my current family high and dry. My current family really stepped it up for the summer and took me on for the full 5 days and paid me accordingly. For Christmas last year, they gave me a gift certificate to a spa for a massage, and for my birthday, they took my partner and I out for a lavish dinner. They tell me constantly that they love me and couldn't do without me.

So, here is why I am posting. Lately, they have seemed extra busy with their jobs, battling insurance (STILL, UGH) and beginning to rebuild their house. They have asked me if I could help out a little more around the house (ie: do their laundry as well, grocery shop for them. Also, they lost their once a month housekeeper so they asked if I would do the deep cleaning she used to do and they will pay me an extra $20/week which would equal what they paid her -$80/month). I agreed, and have since found it very exhausting to try to get all of the deep cleaning done in the time the 18 month old takes his 2 hour nap, as well as all of their laundry, etc. On occasion, I feel like I want to help them out so much that I have found myself scrubbing a bathtub while my charge is awake even. I feel like I'm trying to do it all, and I am slowly wearing down. I just don't know how to approach them about how I am feeling. Also, since it is my one year anniversary with them, I would really like to ask for a raise. Good nannies in our area make a minimum of $15/hour, and I make $12.50. I don't want to stress them out more though. And my last concern is that whenever they go on vacation, (which has been more frequently lately, I am picking them up from the airport in the morning after a 2 week stay in Hawaii) they do not pay me anything. Is it fair for me to ask them for some sort of stipend while they are away? It has really killed me financially this month to miss out on two weeks of pay, and especially so close to Christmas. I'm sorry this is so long, I am just beginning to feel a little resentful of the situation, and I don't want to feel that way, as I truly love this family as if they were my own, and don't want to risk rocking the boat and losing my little guy whom I've created such a bond with. Thank you so much for any feedback.

The Autobiography of a Former Nanny

a day in the life 2012
I have been really inspired by a few recent autobiographical posts so I decided to write my own! I probably have one of the shortest-lived nanny careers out there but I wouldn't take back my nanny experience for the world. I prefaced my nanny career by starting to babysit at the young age of about 13. I mostly babysat for my cousins (I have a lot of them!). I usually didn't get paid because my aunt and uncle would pay me in vacations and gas (they own a gas station) and I definitely didn't complain. I know that babysitting for family members is a whole different situation but children are children nonetheless and I learned a lot; mostly how to get children to trust you and also how to trust yourself with children. I have babysat for them since then but sadly they are now 15 and 8 so they don't need me as much.

I also began babysitting for other families, who I met through online nanny searches. I was really nervous to do this but have had nothing but success with it. About 3 and a half years ago when I returned for summer break from my out-of-state college, I was in search of a short-term babysitting job before I left to work at an out-of-state sleepaway girls camp (I just can't seem to get away from kids!). I found a family online who lived in a neighboring town to mine. I LOVE this family. They have two boys who were 3 and 5 and the most rough and tumble boys you'll ever meet. The parents also loved me and used me whenever they could, mostly just a few hours per week. It worked out perfectly because the same week I was leaving the state for camp, the family was going to live at their summer house for the remainder of the summer. I have continued to babysit for this summer since meeting them (mostly on my breaks since I went to college out-of-state) but I kept in contact and would send them mail, which they loved!

The following summer is when I decided I wanted to be a full time nanny while home on summer break. I had from May until the end of August so it was a good chunk of time to fill. I was new to nannying and didn't really know what to look for. I settled on a family that was about 30 minutes away from me, they had one boy who was 6 years old. He was actually a gifted child, meaning he was very bright and intellectual, reading at an 8th grade level while in the first grade. As you can imagine, this was quite challenging because he was really smart but his behavior was right on target for his age. We often went to his town pool, went to museums and aquariums, and had playdates. Overall it wasn't too bad but his mother gave me a run for my money. She was easygoing but so scatterbrained that I couldn't keep up. They had rules like one hour of screen time per day, one dessert per day, etc, which I liked because it gave him boundaries. Their house was always a mess and she was always last minute with my hours. I didn't know any better and was naive so I just let a lot of things go. I was satisfied with the money, though, so that's one good thing. The thing I hated the most was that she was often home during the day because she could work from home, and I didn't like that at all. It's not that I am doing anything wrong but it just feels weird having a parent home. Also, the mother had a health issue that often landed her in the hospital unexpectedly. At first I didn't mind the extra hours because I knew they didn't have local family to step in and help. It was actually kind of nice to be needed, but then it started to get stressful. I would be stuck at their house for really long hours and I just didn't feel comfortable. I swore to myself that I would not return to that job the next summer. But guess what... I returned the following summer! How does that happen?! I think I was just lazy and didn't want to have to look for a new job so I agreed to work for them again. It was basically the same as the previous summer; same struggles and annoyances. I finished out the summer but have not spoken to the family since. The mom was just too pushy and wouldn't leave me alone. She wanted to know everything about my life and I am just more of a private person. Often I do miss the child and think about him and what he is up to. It is a shame that sometimes the parents can ruin it for a child.

This past May I graduated from college and returned back home. I began looking for a full time job in my field. I went on a few interviews and got discouraged because most places were telling me I didn't have enough experience. I decided to "settle" with what I knew and go back to nannying because I only had about a year before I would be going back to school for my masters degree. I use the term "settle" not to belittle nannies or nannying in general, I mean it was sort of a safe decision for me, not pushing me to grow and be out of my comfort zone. I eventually found a family with a newborn and started with them in August while the mother was on maternity leave, planning to switch to full time in October when she went back to working full time. Everything was great, I loved the child and the family but then I became unhappy with the situation. I had underestimated the commute and it would often take me an hour and a half to get there each morning! It was exhausting and I was already so tired by the time I got to their house at 8am. I had considered finding an apartment closer to their house but it was just not a good decision financially. I decided that I needed to quit the job. We didn't have a contract (yes I know, big mistake) so I gave them a two week notice and told them I had unexpectedly gotten a job offer in my field that I couldn't pass up. I felt terrible lying to them but I felt really bad that I had wasted so much time when they could have found a nanny who lived closer. They were sad to see me go and I was also sad because I loved the baby.

That was almost two months ago and I have since found a job in my field, outside of being a nanny. As I said before, my nanny career was very short-lived but worth every second. I do work with kids now, and probably will for the rest of my life, so my babysitting and nannying have benefitted me so much! As much as I loved it, I do not miss being a nanny one bit! I still babysit here and there but being a nanny is a whole different thing. I am not a fan of the seclusion, having to deal with parents, feeling like a stranger in a house you are in more than your own, and always being compelled to say "yes" when I want to say "no". So, I give all you nannies out there a big round of applause because I just wasn't cut out to stick around and make it my career.

If you have made it this far (sorry this is so long!) I have a question for allyou retired nannies out there who went on to find jobs outside of nannying. I was wondering what careers you have now? Like I said, since I stopped being a nanny, I have found a job in my career path, and that is being an Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Therapist for children with Autism. I do home-based
services in and around my town for children in Early Intervention. Thank you for reading and I hope to hear back from other nannies out there. Happy holidays!