Garfield Park in Chicago, Illinois

bad nanny sighting If your son has dark red hair, is between 3-5 years old and plays in Garfield park with his 30 something year old Latina should consider getting a new nanny.

She doesn't watch your child. He is climbing on very high structures with only socks on. A fall -which seemed imminent- would be a certain broken bone. She is certainly not teaching him or helping him. He isn't learning how to interact appropriately with other children because he is completely ignored. When I tried to find who was with this child she did not identify herself, as she was paying so little attention she didn't even hear me questioning everyone. She had a hat pulled down and was on the phone for over 1/2 hour ignoring him. He could have been hurt, taken or anything. She absolutely does not care about your child. This is clear.

When I finally identified her because he ran to her (he had been playing alone unattended for an hour), she was dismissive and rude. I pointed out she was hired to care for a child and she just kept talking on the phone. She is, bar none, the worst nanny I have encountered. Something bad eventually will happen, and you will have no way of knowing if it was preventable, because she will say, "He was just playing...he's such an active boy... and I was standing RIGHT there and he fell. There was nothing I could do--it happened so fast." I guarantee you will have this conversation. And I hope it is that conversation and not that he has been snatched by a stranger, because I could have taken him screaming from the park and she wouldn't have looked up. She was far away and completely immersed in her call. If she did it that day, she does it every day.
To the OP: the City and State wasn't specified so I looked up Garfield Park. If I am incorrect, please let me know. Thank you!

Nanny Job From Hell... No, But Really!

nanny horror story I have been a nanny since I started college. After four WONDERFUL years with a family that I adored, and had practically raised the infant and two year old until just before their 4th and 6th birthdays - the mom decided she wanted to be a stay at home mother and since I was graduating, it made sense. I was assured we'd always be "family" and to this day stay in touch with her and my boys. :) So, leaving a wonderful situation like that one I was eager to move to a new city post graduation and continue nannying (great money, and I love kids). Chicago was my target location, and upon visiting friends I ended up finding a DREAM position with a very wealthy family, heirs to part of the White Sox enterprise. I was told my job would be to look after their one son, who had just turned 2 years old at the time. Seemed easy enough.

I moved in only a few weeks later. I had my entire own living space - in a beautiful luxurious home just outside of downtown. At the start of it, I knew there had been a nanny before me who had left when she became pregnant with her own, and then a girl right before me, who had 'quit' via text message because, as I was told, she didn't have any friends and was miserable in the city. Okay, so some people aren't cut out to live with another family in a strange place....fair enough. I was going to be GREAT at this.

The money was good enough, especially since I was living rent/utility/grocery free in downtown Chicago. My gas, and all activities were paid for and the mom frequently treated me to pedicures, dinners, shopping...I was living the life.

The little boy, was a total nightmare however. He started out just being a normal "2 year old"...but as the hitting, scratching and biting continued I realized it was a cry for attention. Not only did these people not want to be parents, they didn't know how to be. There aren't words to describe how annoying it was to be in the room with a child who would do anything to get what he wanted - scream, hit, bite, kick, throw things, break things...anything. He was a terror. I attributed it to the lack of parenting and loved him anyway - spent extra time, went out of my way to give him all the attention I could.

I was scheduled to work M-F 7:30-5:30, good enough, and one weekend night a month. ONE weekend night a month. Re-read that for that latter part of this paragraph. Then the sleeping nightmares came, as he refused to sleep in his bed, and would constantly get up and down - and would not go back to sleep for either parent. The only way he would stay in his bed and sleep is if I went in there and put him back and tucked him back in. This went on every night for months. We put an alarm on his bedroom door so if he opened it we'd all hear it...(it was dangerous for him to walk around upstairs unheard, and the house was hardly child proofed). So, midnight, 2 am, 4 am, 6 am....the alarm, every night - and I knew, if I didn't get up and put him back that NONE of us would get any sleep ever. The mother would do what I told her - put him back, don't look at him, just put him back every time. It didn't work, it never worked, no matter how hard we tried - so I, in hopes of getting ANY sleep had to play supernanny and do it myself. Mind you, after a couple of months, I was EXPECTED to do this. I got text messages at 2 am from upstairs "...he's up please take care of it." REALLY? Thats your child that you've ruined, you get up. I did it as a favor initially because I knew that the mother was really doing all the work herself - as the dad wanted nothing to do with this little boy -- a high up corporate exec who could give a shit less about having a child. So, she and I had formed a bond, and basically were raising this child together.

Then the early morning hours started. He would wake up for the day at 4 am, and she would let him -without any regard for me, come downtsairs and play outside my room in the hall, or IN my room if he pleased - waking me up 3 hours before I needed to be up. There were days I just made him go back to sleep in my bed - because I couldn't function at 4 am...

I just felt disrespected. Plain and simple.

I was expected to take him places, and do things - fair enough, I loved it. We did museum trips, and zoo trips, to the library, play groups, tumbling, out to lunch, to parks, etc....there were even the few Saturdays where I offered to take him for the mornings in hopes the mom would get a few hours of sleep and could relax a little bit. I told her "I'll get him up and take him out, we'll be home by 10 for you!" But no. I'd get a text at 9:30, "Why dont you take him to the zoo for the afternoon. Thanks!!!"

Excuse me? my day off? No no no...
NO RESPECT and I never got paid extra.

The final straw for me came about 8 months into the dad had planned to come in and visit me... he gave me 5 weeks notice that he would be there for a couple days. I came upstairs one morning and said to her "Hey, in January my dad will be here for a weekend, I'm so excited" and her response was "You weren't going to ask me??? What if we wanted to go on a date that weekend?"

I was blown away. "A date? Do you have a scheduled plan I didn't know about?"

No of course she didn't. She just WANTED me to be available in CASE she did. Thats crap. I was defensive at this point - and in utter disbelief that anyone could expect a grown 23 year old to ask permission for her father to visit her during NON WORK hours.

So I quit. I up and just quit one day. I gave more than 2 weeks notice, 3 to be exact and offered to help them find someone before I left. Come to find out later she had been snooping through my drawers, purses, emails, facebook for months. Awesome.

Worst job ever, I still think about it, the emotional stress and frustration still lingers. OH, the best part is I found out later they had had 6 nannies in 2 years before me - but of course didn't let me know. In the year that I've been gone, they have had 4 more. Hows that.....good lord. Thank GOD I am out of there! Beware of people, you NEVER know....

Cool Creek Park in Carmel, IN

bad nanny sighting There was a nanny at Cool Creek Park in Carmel, IN on Tuesday, February 22, who hit one of the twin boys she was watching. She wasn't watching the boys, and was more interested in the animals and crafts than they were. They kept wandering off, separately, and she kept trying to find them. The boys were no older than 1 1/2 or 2 years old. She was driving a burgundy PT Cruizer. If she's your nanny, I'd let her go.

Good Luck, Denise!

reader sbmission This isn't something typical ISYN would do but I found it to be inspiring. A Nanny and longtime Reader of this Blog wrote us a letter asking if we could support her quest to be the face of Fitness Magazine. Here is her story:

I have worked hard to lose over 100 pounds through exercise and healthy eating. My whole life began to fall into place when I prioritized my heath! I shed more than pounds, I shed insecurities, personal doubts and fear. I gained confidence and found the kind of happiness that can only come from being absolutely true to yourself. I even met the man of my dreams and he too lost over 100 pounds before we even met! I try to motivate and be an example to my family and friends, even strangers! I am passionate about fitness and would love to share my story in hopes of inspiring others who (like I once thought) think it's impossible to acheive your fitness goals and become their best selves. It's more than possible, it's attainable for each and every person. I want to be the person who tells them and makes them believe it. ~ Denise (AKA Deni)
Here is the link to Denise's Blog for those wanting to know more:

Wooden Park in Highland Village, TX

good nanny sighting Good Nanny Sighting: The nanny was in her late 20's, had a european accent, long dark hair, glasses and was at least 5'10". She had four kids with her, 3 boys between the ages of 6-11 (one boy had Down Syndrome, and I heard one referred to as Jason) and one girl approximately 8. She carried a blue cooler.

They were at the wooden park in Highland Village, TX near Briarhill Middle School Today, around 2-3pm. This is a big, all wooden park that doesn't provide much visibility. I watched as she played with and encouraged her charge with DS while keeping the other three children in her eyesight and happy. It was refreshing to see another nanny who didn't sit idly by out of eyesight of her charges. Whoever employs her is very lucky!

Why Do Some People Become Parents?

opinion 1 Don't work for Craig & Leah G**** in Georgetown, Ma. The first few months were great, and then Leah just decided to quit her job and said "oh I don't need you for the next few weeks". I worked full time and that was my source of income to pay my rent/car/school, etc. My contract was for Mon-Fri 9-5, and then she kept pushing back the hours, 10-4, 9-2, if someone wanted to come visit, she would just say "oh can you leave at 1:00 today". I did laundry, cleaning, education, and caring for her child, and I was so mistreated. When I gave my month notice, she flipped out, and is still harrassing me now. She "doesn't wanna get stuck" with her son, hes "so annoying". Just awful. Why do some people become parents?

Too Much Work for a Live Out Nanny

opinion 1 How do I tell my family I think they need a live in nanny? I work 55+ hours a weekend and extended weekdays with very little notice (55 is my bare minimum work week) and do the majority of the household work. I really think this family requires a live in or maybe an Au Pair. I am giving my notice Monday seeing as I feel life is worth living and not worth being cooped up all day in a bedroom with kids (I feel trapped). So how do I tell them that I think this is not only too much work for me but also too much work for anyone who has so much as a hobby outside of being a nanny (I have no life).

Rebecca's Column...

Will be late as she had to go on a trip with her Nanny Family and where she is at they have no internet connection. We hope to have it up sometime Sunday. Thank you.



.... WHAT?!

1) Sitter/Childcare Needed in my Home (Idaho)
My kids are spoiled little homebodies, who make finding a childcare almost impossible for me. I am brutally honest, and will not put up with any bull. I expect honesty, integrity, and someone who shows signs of good work ethic. If this is not you, please, do us both a favor and move on. We are looking for someone who is reliable and will take care of my kids and not maintain their Facebook account while my child innocently discovers nail polish and starts to repaint parts of my walls and furniture. If you are a slob, and will not wash a dish that was used while my child was under your care, then thanks for reading thus far. I’m not looking for a Super Nanny, and I don’t need someone who will change my ways of parenting. My kids are just fine how they are. If you have a great trick on bedtime, I’m all ears, but if you’re the type who is going to come in and “save” us, then God bless, and please, move on. We are not difficult people, and we are fairly easy to work for. Our kids are well behaved, and mind 90% of the time. They are respectful and will not challenge you out of spite.

If you are religious, please keep it to yourself. Again, we do not require saving, and don’t really want that pushed on our children. We will be respectful to your faith, but will not ask to talk God with you. LEAVE THE BIBLE IN THE CAR. It makes my husband uncomfortable, and honestly, we are not interested. We have our faith and beliefs that we prefer to keep to ourselves. This is a working relationship, so it will be treated as such. Religion and politics will not be discussed by me, and I think I can speak for my husband in saying that he is less interested than I am in those subjects. So if you are into preaching the Lord, and pushing bible study, and love to express your love or hate for our current president, please, PLEASE move on.

If you are unhappy with your life, you will be more unhappy if you take this job, so do us all a favor and get some treatment or move to the mountains, but do not answer this ad I’m the last person who is going to want to sit down to hear about how much your life sucks, or how your boyfriend broke up with you last night. I have my own issues, and issues that I don’t actually hold claims to, that I’m compelled to deal with, and really don’t need to add to that list. I may seem like that person you want to tell all to, but trust me, I just have “that look”, and I get that ALL the time. I pretend well, but only when I’m getting paid for it. I won’t pay to hear about your bad hair day, or fight with your best friend. Keep your bad days to yourself, and don’t project that on my children. If you require medication that keeps you from being a sociopath, please no need to reply. I grew up with crazy, and will recognize it right away and ask you to leave. There’s enough crazy in my home, we don’t need more.

Don’t mistake me for heartless, if you grandma dies, I’m all ears for that, but anything else will just irritate me, and I will move on, and politely ask you to as well. If you smoke, please quit. Don't bother applying either, but please quit. The smell sticks to your skin and doesn’t really go away until you quit and gut your home and car. It’s a disguising habit, and really isn’t attractive. Same goes for chewing. If you do drugs or drink enough that the bar knows your name when you walk in the door, and you are grumpy in the morning from that hangover and grumpier at night prior to that next cocktail, call AA, walk away from idea of childcare until after being sober a year. If you cannot multi task, or communicate without being direct and to the point, don't even bother replying. If you are the type who doesn't notice crumbs on the table, skip to the next post, because crumbs are a deal breaker. They put me and especially my husband over the edge. Cleanliness and organization is a must for us. My husband especially. He is extremely OCD, and it seems to reflect on the kitchen mainly. I’m assuming it is because he is a restaurant guy.

If you are still here and reading, either there is hope for us, you are desperate for work, or you are just bored and curious enough to see where this may lead. But if you are serious about answering this ad, I will now tell you a little more about my children. My 10 year old likes to stay at grandma’s house because she can do as she pleases, and my 3 year old hates everyone I’ve taken her to outside of grandma, and my best friend’s. Grandma doesn’t do daycare, and my friend has gone back to school, so she doesn’t either. So this has left me in a bind. I found a wonderful woman for my daughter, and she watches other kids in her home by my work. Perfect, right? My 3 year old act like I’ve tried to kill her favorite pet every time I leave her, and screams she wants to go home. She told me the other day that she’d rather someone just stay at the house with her because she wants her stuff, not someone else’s. Not only that, she prefers to sleep until noon, and for me to take her to her current sitter, I wake her at 8 to be there in time for me to go to class.

So here I am placing an ad for something I’m on a budget for. I love my kids, but can’t afford some of the ridiculous prices I’ve seen out there. I can pay you $20-$25 a day for my 3 year old and $10 for my 10 year old, seeing as how she can take care of herself. I am expecting another baby, who I would leave in your care when I am ready to return to work. I would want the care to continue while I’m on maternity, so that I can attempt on rest. Hours would be fairly consistent, and the days wouldn’t vary much outside of Monday-Wednesday. Day’s would start around 9am, and either my husband or I would be home no later than 6-6:30. On occasion we may need some weekend help, depending on my kid’s schedules as well as ours with work. I would like someone who is willing to do light housework, mainly what involves my child. Any extra would be a plus, and if you do regular housework, we can arrange a different payment agreement. If you love to cook, by all means, we won’t stop you. I had a nanny/sitter in the past that did it all. I was spoiled by her and she was worth every penny. She cleaned my home, cared for my child, and prepared dinner for us. When we moved here, we couldn’t convince her to relocate, not that I blame her.

I’m hoping to get my kids involved in some summer activities, so reliable transportation is a must. I would also require proof of insurance and a valid driver license. If you have ever hit a human with your car, please move on. If you are prone to accidents, again, thanks for reading, and please move on. Any driving done, gas money would be provided. I will never ask that anything be done out of pocket, including gas money. If you are at all interested, please e-mail me with some information about yourself, and contact information. I check my e-mail regularly, and will respond as soon as I can. I have started my search last week and already have some responses. I plan on taking the time next Wednesday, to speak with each responder personally to see if it's a good fit for us. I will not waste your time, so please do not waste mine.
Special thanks to SuzanneStadler for our Feature, that was a really good one! Also, thank you to the following Readers for their Contribution: MissDee, NannyCaroline, jessicamparra, Jeneener, Krossi2009, JacquiRodgers, NannyDebSays, N is for Nanny, NannyEmmy and Kbarker83... all of you did an amazing job! I really appreciate your sending in those Ads to me. Please send next weeks CL-WTF Ads HERE or use MEEBO. Don't forget to include the Links and the Body of the ad, if possible! Thank you!



Music Class

Rebecca Nelson Lubin
guest column I love when my charges get old enough to attend their first real class. It’s usually just past the first birthday when the Mom Boss and I will begin to discuss the sudden urgent need for the baby to be “socialized” beyond the library story time and the side by side interaction at the local park. I like to begin with a music class. Me, I love music. I breathe music. I sing to the babies in the bath, while rocking them to sleep, and have my iPod mounted and plugged into my car stereo with a six CD changer on backup should we run out of song choices from the 5,000 or so at our disposal. Oh, and then there is the tape deck just in case the right song for carpool is actually the bootleg Grateful Dead tape from the fabulous second set of the Cornell ’77 show. You could say that I am a bit of an audiophile.

This December my Mom Boss and I sat down to talk classes for the Girl baby, who was just turning sixteen months. I would have loved to take her to my usual music class, the one I have been taking charges to for a good ten years – the one where the founder actually once mused that I might take over from her one day due to I think my gusto at repeated renditions of “Row Row Row Your Boat” since Bush junior’s first crack at the presidency. Sadly though, my go to class did not fit into our busy schedule - and more importantly – the schedules of her very busy older brothers – or her extremely regular nap schedule. So I went on the Internet and choose a class for us to attend completely based on timing and location. Big bad mistake.

I did not know the grave gaffe I had made for several weeks as Girl baby attended Music class with her Mother. It fell to me to take her four weeks in, and at first it was all good. We left our shoes at the door and sat in a circle with an assortment of grownups and toddlers. The teacher began the class by calling in her musical muses with sweet stokes of a bow across a well-trod violin. Then she laid the violin at her side…and barked at us. In melody. I swear. She nodded eagerly at the grownups and they barked back, off key. She smiled, and repeated the melody in meows. I looked around the circle and thought, “Are you freaking kidding me?” But no, they were not, meows sounded all around me. Quacks followed, then moos.

The teacher preceded the next number by announcing, “I trust everyone has memorized their CD’s by now,” and then launched into a song that had more words than “The Day The Music Died.”

For forty-five minutes we endured, with not an instrument in sight, not a drum to bang, not a song I recognized, not a recognizable toddler music class moment save for the movement with silk scarves montage that required actual chorography that brought forgotten scars bubbling to the surface, long buried from my 8th grade failure at ball room dancing. As the teacher launched into her goodbye song I felt parched and sweaty and longing for a thick peanut butter sandwich and a nap. I glanced around the room and judging from the expressions on the other adult’s faces felt a dim sense of reassurance that I was not the only one completely done in.

I sought out my Mom Boss once home and inquired,

“What did you think of Music Class?”

“It kind of sucked.” She conceded.
Rebecca Nelson Lubin is a writer and Nanny who resides in the San Francisco Bay Area. You may read more of her articles at
 Would you like to share your story with I Saw Your Nanny? Email us at

What Benefits Should a Nanny Get?

opinion 1 I am currently searching for a new nanny position, and I have been disappointed with the benefits offered by most of the families I've interviewed with. I was wondering what kind of benefits y'all have, or what you offer to your nanny if you are a parent. I am only looking at on-the-books jobs, but would be interested in hearing what off-the-books nannies get in the way of benefits, as well. Thanks, guys!

Nanny Share is Causing a Bit of Contention

opinion 1 I've been working full time for two families in a nanny share for a little over a year. My charges are two fabulous 1 1/2 year old boys. This is my first share so I knew little of what to expect.

In the interviews both families (who have been friends for years) where great and stressed that they were looking for a nanny who is "an extension of the family". I know this is highly controversial in our world but as someone in a new area with few friends and no family, I too, was looking for that "family".

There were some red flags in the beginning. Family A was uncomfortable with me taking their son on walks in the double stroller until he was six months old. I got sick and was out for two days, got a Dr's note saying I was fine to go back to work, Family A disagreed and made me take a third sick day. We had a huge snow storm, most places were closed for a week. Family B was staying home and didn't need me at all that week. I treaded to work each day I could in the snow for Family A, sometimes hours late because of the conditions. For two days, heading to work was impossible, as every road in the city had been shut down. In the end, Family A expected me to make up 27 hours of missed time. I made up more than half of it on top of my ten hour days, then I protested, it just didn't seem fair to still be making up so much time months after the storm had passed. This is not even half of what I've endured with this family. Everything about them is cold and unemotional- everything that I am not.

Family B is the family most nannies dream of working for. They are truly amazing. We make such a great team. They trust my judgement and make me feel appreciated. The days that I was out sick, my husband was away on business. They came over and brought me a care package! I got invited to their son's birthday party (not so for Family A). They've invited me to vacation with them. They've even offered up their grocery list for me to jot down things I'd like. Their friends are great and always joke that they want me to come nanny for their children. They are just all around great people.

Let it be known that I bust my butt for both families and go above and beyond, they all agree. Obviously, Family B is the perfect fit and I'm realizing that I just want to work for them. Family A is not horrible, they just aren't who they presented in the interview (who is, right?). It's becoming clear that the two familes are even realizing how different they are and it's causing a bit of contention.

I need some advice from your savvy readers. I can't just quit one family right? I know the whole money factor comes into play, as well. I'd take a pay cut to work just for Family B. Or should I remain unhappy to avoid a sticky situation? What are my options in this situation? Thanks.


Nanny Would Prefer to Work During Vacation

Received Tuesday, February 15, 2011
opinion 1 I'm in a bit of a strange situation with the family I work for and I feel like I'm losing out on hours but not sure if I should bother bringing it up. So I've been nannying full time (live out) for this family for 8 months now. The job has been very intense (kids are currently 10 years old, 20 months, and 7 months), with watching the three kids and for a long period being expected to do a large amount of housework. Not to mention 60 hours a week most weeks. I'm leaving the job in a couple weeks, but on good terms, because I was already planning to go teach English abroad when I took the job, and my employers were aware (and accepting) of that. The family loves me and wishes I could stay, but despite loving the kids I'm ready to get out of there!

Anyway, they treat me like one of the family (and I get the good and bad ends of that!) and are taking me on a ski vacation for 5 days from saturday to wednesday. They recently hired a new nanny to work alongside me so there would be a smooth transition (which I think is a good idea), and she will also be coming to the ski trip. The parents just informed me that they want to 'treat' me and that this would be a total vacation for me and I wouldn't actually be working, they just want me to enjoy a trip with them before I leave and the new nanny will be caring for the kids.

Now, to get to the point, because I won't be 'working' (so they say....I find that hard to believe and it will be strange to be around the kids and not help out), I also won't be getting paid. Now, they are paying for the hotel and ski lift, etc (of course!), and if it were just a weekend, I would be flattered. But I'll now be missing out on 3 days pay (36 hours!). I'll be moving abroad soon and was expecting that money. I know they see it as a nice gesture, and I'll only have 2 days of work left after we get back from the trip.

So, should I bring it up? I don't expect to be paid for the whole time I'm there, and I'm glad I won't be working the whole time, but some hours would be nice. I have a feeling the new Nanny is going to end up working tons of hours (the parents have good intentions but aren't so good about giving free time even when they're around) and feeling burned out. Should I perhaps offer to work 2-3 hours a day to give the new nanny a couple hours off? That way the parents don't have to end up paying anything extra total? I don't want to seem ungrateful, but really, I'd prefer to spend the weekend with friends and family before I leave the country for several months, especially if I'm not getting paid... although I wouldn't consider turning down the trip altogether. I would really appreciate some advice and I hope I was clear. The trip is this weekend so feedback asap would be fantastic. Thanks!

Nanny is being Enticed into Selling Passion Enhancers

Received Tuesday, February 15, 2011
opinion 1 This may sound like a horrible question to be asking BUT I am in a large amount of debt from back when credit cards were easy to get. I know it was stupid of me but now being more mature I need that debt gone. Unfortunately, I don't make the big bucks as a nanny so I'm looking for other options. A friend of mine sells "passion enhancers" if you get what I mean. The parties are usually married women and very tasteful. She is moving up in the company and is willing to give me all her contacts. Since the only free time I have is on weekends I was thinking I'd take it up. But as a nanny I worry how people will view me. I know I could take jobs not in that area where I work so word wouldn't spred but still. I'm desperate and Beauty Products and Jewelry are WAY over done around here. So my question is: how would you view your nanny if she sold these products? Keep in mind I'm quite modest and actually not all that interested in what the products are for but this is a good opprotunity!

Housekeeper is Witnessing Babysitter being Abusive

Received Tuesday, February 15, 2011
opinion 1 Hi! my mom works as a housekeeper and for some time now she has felt that the babysitter was a bit mean on how she treated the kids, then one day the babysitter grab one of the twins really hard by the arm my mom didn't say anything bc the boy like other children does misbehave but today she saw the babysitter spanking the child and smacking his hand 5 times really hard and the child sure was upset. My mom and I have the same feeling that it is only going to get worse but don't know how to tell the parents.


ISYN Readers

If you have a Sighting, News Story or Submission...
an idea for a feature, a Day in The Life submission or just a question...
Please send it to

What details do I include in my nanny sighting?

* Physical description of caregiver
* Physical description of involved child/children
* Address or venue of observed incident
* Date and time of incident
* Detailed description of what you witnessed
* Description of vehicle, bag or stroller


Dealing with Disrespect

Written by Saraya
guest column "I often think back to my time as a nanny, and wonder: why didn’t I leave that one horrible job sooner? Why didn’t I call the parents out on what they were doing so obviously wrong? Why didn’t I sit down with them and say, “If your child continues to disrespect me (hit me, throw things at me, defy me, etc, etc) and there is no discipline happening to correct it, I’m going to have to give my notice.” But I didn’t. Most of us won’t. Even through all the crap, we still hold out hope that WE as nannies can succeed where the parents have failed. We love the kids, and we don’t want to leave. We want to be a constant, dependable presence for the kids, where the parents may not be. And honestly, who wants to deal with that kind of confrontation? Who wants to tell another adult that they are doing something wrong and that’s why their kids are so bad? We don’t want to ‘black listed’ as a nanny either. So we endure.


Babysitter was Knocked out on Nyquil when Infant Died in Bucket

A Queens babysitter who let an 11-month-old boy drown in a bucket while she nodded off on NyQuil was found guilty of reckless assault and endangering the welfare of a child Tuesday. Kristal Khan, 30, faces up to four years in prison at her sentencing for the death of James Farrior.



How Much of a Raise Do I Deserve?

Received Wednesday, February 9, 2011
opinion 1 I have been mulling this over for months and still don't know what to ask for. I am a nanny for 3 children 3 days per week for 8-10 hours a day. I have been with them for about 13 months. I get paid $560/week before taxes and after about $490. She pays my gas occasionally when I have to bring the baby to my house while the other 2 are in school (their house is being COMPLETELY remodeled). A little info on the kids. The 6 year old boy has severe ADD and is on multiple medications for this. He can be quite violent, hitting, biting, kicking, throwing things etc. He has gotten better but does have relapses. I have received many bruises from him. He is constantly disobeying me and I have to keep a constant eye on him because he will run outside and down the street without even saying anything. The 9 year old girl has serious listening problems. I have to ask her 9 and 10 times minimum to do something as simple as getting her shoes on. Then when she doesn't want to do something she throws tantrums and cries for her mom and all she will say is "momma, I want momma" and she won't talk to me or let me talk to her, she just screams and cries momma. It is ridiculous. Her mom just shrugs it off and she doesn't even get reprimanded for it so it continues on. Again she is 9! Then there is the baby who is 16 months old now. There is no structure or reprimanding in her life either. She is very difficult to deal with, refusing naps, throwing toys, refusing diaper changes, throwing food etc. She in herself is a full time job for me and it is incredibly difficult to handle. She screams all the time and gets into everything (they have NO childproofing in their home including NO gate on the stairs). I have bought a baby gate and high chair and changing table with my own money to have at my home because i have to bring her here during the construction at the house. Mom hasn't even offered to give me money for things like that. They also have 2 birds, 2 hamsters, a dog, 2 cats and a chinchilla that I have to deal with daily. It is not part of the job contract but I have to deal with meowing cats if I don't let them out and feed them and SCREAMING birds who are constantly going nuts and a crying dog. So that adds to the stress. Then to top it all off their house is a disaster. It smells like cat pee EVERYWHERE. I have to bulldoze through and clean up the kitchen, sweep and mop, straighten all the rooms and vacuum and do laundry etc. None of that was part of the job except for the laundry yet I do all of it and she constantly thanks me and tells me how wonderful I am. So, i asked for a raise and she said we can discuss it. How much should I ask for? Is asking for an additional $60 per week too much? Some people say that they pay their nannies for their cell phone usage and their car insurance. I drive them around everyday and I always use my phone. Is it possible to ask her to pay my taxes for me? Ive heard someone say that as well. I just don't know what to ask for. I feel that I deserve much more then what I get. Please help! Thanks in advance.

Letting Go, Saying Good-Bye and Keeping in Touch...

Received Wednesday, February 9, 2011
opinion 1 I may get blasted for this because I know how many times I've read about how important it is to be professional, that we, as nannies, are not family, etc. let me preface this by saying that I am being very professional at the business end, being considerate and committed to very clear communication as I plan to leave my current position. I have given notice verbally and followed it up in writing. I have also given my employers excellent lead time to find my replacement. I told them before the holidays that I would be leaving and moving back to my home state mid-March. Following the holidays (in January) we sat down on a Saturday afternoon for a meeting to check in and be clear with one another. Lot's of tears, but a good meeting. So all of this is going smoothly. Since that meeting the parents have been interviewing and trying out new nannies on the weekend. They told me that they had a conversation finally, and realized that they just needed to lower their expectations because they weren't going to find another me. So, there is no animosity on the adult level at all.

My extreme difficulty lies in leaving the children. I met them when they were 3 weeks old, and began working for the family when they were almost 2 months. I care for a boy and a girl (twins) who are now 17 months. I am with them 12 hours per day, Monday through Thursday. I provide their total daily care (from getting them up in the morning until they have had dinner, are bathed and ready for their parents to put them down for the night.) I love them like my own grandchildren, and these feelings are reciprocated in their every gesture, smile, hug, laugh. We have great days together! I wouldn't even be thinking of leaving except that my mother is very old and needing my care back in California.

So, my question is for those of you who have been in my position. I literally get sick to my stomach and cry when I'm at home at night and on the weekends and I think about leaving the babies. I know that they are going to wonder what happened to me, and that they are at an age too young for reason. I feel as if I am abandoning them. I have even considered not going, but that is not an option for my own family. So... does anyone have any suggestions as to how this can be done in the easiest way for the children? And also are there any suggestions about how you have kept in touch in a healthy way with past families? Because I will be all the way across the country this seems challenging. Thanks in advance for any suggestions you may have.




.... WHAT?!

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Special thanks to nvnanny for our Feature Ad... also, we really appreciate the following Readers for their Contribution: NannyCaroline, VAnanny, NJnannyC, meebo313127, NC, Melanie, VintageBeauty03, Jeneener and NannyDebSays... all of you did a fantastic job this week! Please send next weeks CL-WTF Ads HERE or use MEEBO. Don't forget to include the Links and the Body of the ad, if possible! Thank you!



My Techno Boy

Rebecca Nelson Lubin
guest column Last week I wrote about a family I still occasionally Nanny for that shuns all media and many of you wrote in really great comments about the need for balance of some form of media in the home, and I agree. It occurred to me this week, as I watched the four year old boy of my full time job navigate my new Droid phone better than I am currently capable of doing, that there is another aspect to exposing children to media and technology - that this is the wave of the future – and these small people will someday be the adults that will ride that wave - and carry it further. We are living in a time of a great technological explosion. I may be an old school forty-something, who still refers to my iPod as my Walkman, and I love a good old-fashioned book (God, they smell so good) more than the notion of a Kindle, but the writing is on the wall. The school calendar is now online. We get more evites to birthday parties than snail mail envelopes. If I want to explain the nuances of a Bugs Bunny cartoon I YouTube it for the children. I got a friend request on my boss’ website, A Band of Wives, today from a woman I have never met, but based on her profile, I was moved to invite her for a hike on Mt Tam for some Saturday soon. My ten-year-old charge has the option of doing his nightly assigned reading on his iPhone through a program set up through iTunes. When my charges want to see their maternal grandmother, we set up a Skype date. Technology is everywhere, and it is up to us, the adults, to encourage the children in our lives to ride with it.

My little four-year-old charge has always loved my cell phones that have come to work with me. When he was a baby, and cranky in his stroller on our daily walks, I would hand him my phone and let him push the buttons. As he grew, my cell phones evolved, and now, I have embarked on a smart phone, and he is in heaven. We downloaded apps the first week. The first three were entirely based on fart-based entertainment. He became completed enveloped in “Whoopee Cushion”, “Pull My Finger” and “Fart Sound Board.” I dare you to show me a four-year-old boy, or any boy for that matter, that does not delight in Fart Jokes. As the weeks rolled by, we found actual applications that we could use for educational purposes. Now as we drive from school to the market and home, I hear him playing with letter sounds and math programs. This week, he figured out how to navigate through my media gallery, and scroll through the photographs and videos I have stored. Verizon, my carrier, rules among cell phone providers, and have transferred my old videos from four old phones now to my current device, and he has been having a fine time viewing old videos of himself at 12 and 18 months, stumbling while trying to walk and stumbling over his first senate structuring. When I picked him up from preschool today he asked me to hold an impromptu screening of him on his older brother’s battery operated quad, engineering a perfect 180 degree donut in their cul de sac. His schoolmates were awestruck. As we drove to the market for fixing for our apple pie afternoon baking project, I listened to him navigate from applications to videos to pictures, all the while holding a constant monologue with me on his progress. I love his techno savvy. Except for one aspect. Tonight, upon arriving from work at my boyfriend’s house, I discovered that the four year old had somehow set Facebook as my homepage, and when I tried to re-set it, I ended up deleting my entire homepage. Frustrated, I turned my phone off.

“Oh well” I said to my boyfriend, “I’ll give my phone to the child on Monday, he can figure it out.”
Rebecca Nelson Lubin is a writer and Nanny who resides in the San Francisco Bay Area. You may read more of her articles at


Am I Being a Jerk?

Received Thursday, February 3, 2011
opinion 1 So I've been at a new job for 6 months now and everything has been going really well. When I was looking for work, it came down to two families. The pay was exactly the same, so it basically came down to perks, hours, and children. I chose the job I did because of two things. They have a baby, which means it will be longer term, and I follow the school calendar meaning I'm off all school holidays and snow days. Now those school holidays and snow days are a big deal to me. It's an awesome perk. It amounts to a ton of paid time off, which is why it was such a big deciding factor in choosing jobs.

Yesterday and today were snow days, and lo and behold I was asked to come in both days for a few hours so the parents could go out. Both days I said no thanks. I haven't minded staying late or coming in early here and there, helping out around the house, or working the occasional weekend night. These two snow days though, I just wanted to stay inside, in my cozy pajamas, sit by the fire, and relax! But now I find myself feeling guilty for saying no. I feel guilty that I'm getting paid to do nothing. Maybe I've already said "yes" too much and set myself up for this. I know I shouldn't be feeling this way. I know I'm not required to work on snow days and I have every right to say no, but it's really eating away at me. They don't pay me any overtime, which again, I don't mind when I feel like working. Today I didn't feel like working, maybe I would have felt like it if I were going to get paid.

I know I've still got a sour taste in my mouth after my last job, which was basically 5 years of being a doormat. I see myself headed down that road again. I just hate to say no, but I really feel like I need to stand up for myself or risk being walked all over, again. I don't know what I'm looking for here, maybe just some affirmation that I'm not a total jerk.



.... WHAT?!

1) Experienced Nanny/Childcare giver required today!!!!!!!! (Philadelphia)
We are looking for a Part Time Nanny 5 days per week, 5 to 6 hours at a time. Duties will include preparing & feeding breakfast, changing child's clothes and diaper, laundry, cleaning up of child's toys and room.

Experience with children is beneficial. If you speak a 2nd language, that is beneficial also, so please do mention that.

We will require the following:
1. Verifiable references
2. Criminal Record Check will be performed also

The above requirements will not be waived under any circumstance. Do not bother applying if you wont meet or submit our requirements.

Pay to be discussed with selected person. Thank you.
Special thanks to the following readers that contributed this week: noenanny, ladybugblessingscrafts, foreverhugged, megrose123, carrie, nannydebsays, afnt81 and missdee... all of you did a really awesome job. My apologies for publishing this so late. Please send next weeks CL-WTF Ads HERE or use MEEBO. Don't forget to include the Links and the Body of the ad, if possible! Thank you!