To The Babysitter

Having a good babysitter makes all the difference in the world. It makes us mommies feel confident in the person we leave our kids with, and know we won’t be coming back to utter chaos and disaster.

Here are 10 expectations I have for my babysitters in return for their hourly wage.

Know what to do in case of an emergency.
Take a basic first aid class and CPR class. Knowing that we are leaving our kids with someone who has the knowledge of basic life saving skills is crucial. Hospitals or community centers offer classes, and these skills look great on a resume.

Be reliable.
Mark your babysitting jobs on a calendar, and confirm with us a day or two prior to the job. If something comes up, PLEASE let us know as soon as you possibly can. It’s not easy finding babysitters at the last minute.

Be with our kids.
We know how easy it is for you to just plug a movie in and have the kids tune into the screens for an entire evening. Believe us, we know!  But, our kids are excited to have you come over and play. We don’t want our children being entertained solely with the TV, iPod, tablet or phone, nor do we want you to be completely consumed by your own screen. Just remember, we are paying you for a service: to tend to our children.

Feed them real food.
If you are babysitting at meal time, please don’t just give the kids snack after snack after snack. Go-gurt, granola bars and fruit snacks do not constitute a meal. Know how to make boxed macaroni and cheese, how to throw a pizza in the oven or how to slap some peanut butter on bread. Bonus points if you take the initiative to bake some homemade cookies as a treat after they eat their meal.

Put the kids to bed.  
Please. We don’t care what the 10-year-old is telling you about whether or not we let him stay up later than his younger siblings. Just make sure they are in bed before we get home. We understand that having a babysitter is as exciting for the kids as it is for the parents, but we still have rules we expect to be followed. Moms look forward to having a sitter for the sole reason that we don’t have to fight through the bedtime routine.

Know how to change a diaper.  
Make sure there’s a fresh one on the baby before you lay her down for the night.

Don’t hesitate to text or call.
While we are getting away from our motherly duties for an evening, we want to be in the know if something is going on. If our kid is having a hard time, text us. We would much rather you call us for help than to learn our baby has been inconsolable for the entire evening.

Make it fun.
Those old Happy Meal toys you got as a kid and are sitting in your basement? Bring them! You have no idea how exciting a small toy or craft is to our kids. While it may be junk to you, it will be a new toy to them. You will instantly become their favorite babysitter! Not only that, your mother will appreciate your efforts to help de-clutter your own house.

Bring a friend.  
If you are babysitting for a large family or a couple of families combined, do it with a trusted friend. You won’t be as overwhelmed, there will be more supervision, and you’ll be able to make some cash with your buddy. Just be sure to run this by the mom you are working for, first.

Clean up.  
Once those kiddos are in bed, and the house is quiet, we really appreciate coming home to see that we won’t have chores to do. You don’t have to scrub toilets, but we love coming home to dishes in the dishwasher and toys into their designated places. Pillows, blankets, and couch cushions put back onto the couch. If you’d like to sweep the floors or fold some clothes, we won’t be opposed to that, either. We guarantee this simple thing – cleaning up – will get you another babysitting job offer or referral to another family.

Microsoft Word - ToTheBabysitter.docxDownload a free babysitting printable information sheet.

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