I have had so many questions about how to find a good babysitter and how we found our nanny lately so I thought I would leave all of my responses here, in one place!
Why We Hired a Nanny:
A lot of you have asked ,’Why do you have a nanny when Troy doesn’t have a job.’ Fair question, but sometimes I just want to answer with a short ‘because we can’ or ‘because why not’. I guess you guys deserve a longer answer because I would probably be genuinely curious about this too.
1.So Troy Could Help More With The Miller Affect
Troy and I decided to hire a nanny quickly after moving here. Troy LOVED being a stay at home dad with Miller and helping me a little on the side in Dallas, but when we moved here to Denver he had to fill in a lot more roles for The Miller Affect and with Callen being born he also had to be the double duty Dad. It was just too much and wasn’t working for us.
Troy is my photographer now and having to go out and shoot outfits for campaigns or regularly posting is nearly impossibly with two kids. We actually had to do it this morning because of weather and Callen basically screamed in the car the entire time which then made Miller scream and it was way too cold to get them out of the car while we were shooting so it was a complete mess. It left me feeling scrambled and rushed and I just never like the outcome of the photos when that happens.
This is my full-time job and a business I created from the ground up. I take it very seriously and sometimes that means Troy and I may have to drop what we are doing at any given time to work on a sponsored collaboration, or grab props for a shoot, or jump on a phone call. It is just too hard to have Troy help with the blog AND have him watch both kids all day.
2.Because Callen and Miller’s Schedules are So Different
We moved to CO so that our kids could have a more active outdoor lifestyle. We want our kids to be able to be outside and be active as much as possible. With a baby at home that slept every two hours it was impossible to keep this up with Miller without help. My work is busier than ever so it was hard when Troy would be gone hiking with Miller for a couple of hours and I had Callen. I would have a deadline or be in the middle of shooting story content and Callen would wake up, or need to be fed, or want to be held. I love my mom duties, and I love my work duties. I just like to keep them separate. Now that we have a nanny, Emily can take Miller outside all day and Troy can tend to Callen during my working hours.
3.Because of COVID
We definitely thought of sending Miller to daycare, Mother’s Day Out, etc. We just decided to hire a nanny instead because of COVID. I think everyone was a little unsure of sending their young ones back to day care last year and when you throw a newborn into the mix it was just something we decided to wait on. Now the kids are used to a routine with Emily so we don’t want to mess that up until it is time for preschool.
We are SO GLAD we made the decision to hire a nanny! She is SO AMAZING with the kids and I feel like Miller has grown up SO MUCH from being around her. The other night I was putting her to bed and asked her what song she wanted to sing together. I mentioned all of her favorite songs and she said ,’No, let’s sing the patience song!’ She then started singing a song about patience I had never heard before. I was amazed! Emily is great at getting Miller’s creative side out, helping her calm down during her tantrums, and so much more. We have really benefited from her in so many ways.
Plus, she will now be traveling with us as well- HUGE BONUS!
How to Find a Good Babysitter/Nanny in Your Area
This is something I never thought to do before moving here to Colorado. I NEVER had a sitter in Dallas and didn’t even know where to start to find one.
1.The Nextdoor App
Do you have the Nextdoor App? If not DOWNLOAD IT ASAP! It is basically a forum with members from YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD! It is fun to get on it to read the latest gossip, see what people are selling, hear about any break-ins, car thefts, etc, AND to ask for recommendations for nannies, sitters, contractors, gardeners, housekeepers, and so much more.
This is how we found Emily. There is actually a group on Facebook called ‘Highlands Ranch Nannies’. A friend of mine told me about it. It is basically just full of people who nanny part time or full time. I posted what I was looking for and got about 20 messages in response. I vetted all of them, held interviews, called references, and narrowed it down that way. For the final three I just had them hang out with us and the kids for an hour at home and watched how the interacted with the kids and later asked the kids how they felt about each person. I could tell Miller was the most comfortable with Emily. It was a perfect fit.
I highly recommend checking these two services FIRST. Search Facebook for local nanny groups. Ask your neighbors on Nextdoor for recommendations.
If those two don’t work:
3. You can try Care.com or a similar service to that.
They initially charge OUT THE WAZOO, but you can hire someone ONE TIME or for one week from that service and then ask that person if they would like to work for you full time outside of Care.com. No, this is not shady. My sister used to work for this kind of service and loved when she got job offers outside of the network. It is nice finding initial help this way because they do all of the background work for you (check references, have ratings, do background checks, etc!)
-Don’t be afraid to let go of a little control. You may see them do something you do completely different. That’s ok. Different doesn’t always mean bad. Sit back and watch it and let it happen. It may actually be a better way of doing things!
-That being said… talk to your nanny when you see something you don’t like or if you have a problem with something. They probably came from a house with completely different rules. Make sure you guys get on the same page about important issues.
-Don’t feel bad or ashamed for having help. Mom shaming HAS GOT TO STOP. Asking for help is GREAT! Sometimes it is best when we admit to ourselves that we just can’t do it all. At the end of the day, what is going to help you be the BEST MOM for your kids? If that is having help all day or a few hours a day, then DO IT.
-With COVID, find someone with the same assumption of risk. Emily has high risk parents that she sees often so she is super careful and is tested often.
If you have any questions let me know in a comment below!
To see more family related posts, check out THIS PAGE on my blog!