Here is the situation – The summer is here and you have hired an enthusiastic and animated nanny to ensure that your kids have a memorable summer and are kept safe. Isn’t summer great!?! And then, in a blink of an eye, September is looming and you are starting to devise your back-to-school mental checklist. New backpacks, coloured pencils and Pinterest lunch ideas. Those are easy to tick off and you manage them one by one. But, what will you do for childcare once school starts?
Your summer nanny has been truly amazing and your kids have really bonded with her. You will certainly need somebody to care for the kids before and after school so you ask her if she is interested in staying on for the school year. She would love to, but she needs to work full time hours. This is understandable, so you offer full days during the Christmas break and March break as well. Oh, and let’s not forget all the PD days that seem to increase in number every year. In addition, it would also be extremely helpful to have care for the kids when they are too sick to attend school. No dice- it’s still not enough hours for her. Ask any parent who has tried to find a solution to this conundrum – finding a nanny with this type of flexibility is not an easy task!
At Nannies on Call, we occasionally have success with these types of placements but it is often a game of luck. It is not easy to get somebody to go in to work for only 2 hours, and then return later that same day for another 2 hour shift. That’s a lot of time spent commuting for a very small pay cheque.
The solution is to increase the Nanny’s hours and transform the position into a full time Nanny/House Manager role. There are many duties she can help out with that a busy working parent just simply does not have time to do.
Here are some ideas for things the Nanny can help you out with while the kids are in school:
- Meal Preparation
- Grocery Shopping
- Batch cooking (ie. Filling your freezer with home cooked meals so that weekend meals are easy)
- Errands: Dry cleaning, car servicing, post office, etc
- Shopping for birthday presents and Christmas presents
- Wrapping the gifts
- Planning the children’s birthday parties
- Making costumes for the school play or Halloween
- Sorting through the children’s clothes/packing away the items that don’t fit
- Organizing tradesmen to come into the home
- Packing the car for the weekend at the cottage
- Researching summer camps/local activities for the kids
As I write this article, I think about what tasks I would really love help with and the first thing that popped into my head was ‘photos’! I have a million and six photos of my daughters just sitting on my hard drive, unorganized and untouched. I would give my left arm to have somebody take over this project for me and organize them into folders, print the best ones and put them into albums for me.
Good help is hard to find so if you know a nanny who is truly wonderful, hold on tight to her! Your children’s happiness is unquestionably worth it, and your stress levels with thank you!