Does babysitting count as a first job? Technically that’s the first work I did to earn money other than doing chores in exchange for an allowance.
I was a great babysitter. My mom taught me one very important thing: Leave the home cleaner than when you found it (on top of all other necessary duties). As a born over-achiever, this was always my goal;
to receive praise to be the best babysitter these moms had ever seen. It worked, too. On top of that, I found that tidying someone else’s home was much easier than cleaning my own home. Besides, what else am I going to do while the kid naps? Sit around and watch TV? Well, it seems that’s what babysitters today do.
As a mom of 3, it has gotten far more difficult to have a fun night out on the town with Mr. Sexy. I have gotten a babysitter only a few times. The cost sure has increased! I remember receiving around $5 an hour (and I usually got extra because I was so awesome). Now, girls are charging a bare minimum of $10/hour! About a year ago Mr. Sexy and I were desperate for a date night so we hired a babysitter. I come home at the end of night and found that $150 got me a wonderful dinner with my husband, the kids alive and awake in bed, and a babysitter watching TV on my couch while dirty dinner dishes and leftovers hadn’t moved from the dining room or kitchen counters.
NOT OKAY PEOPLE!
Needless to say, I didn’t call her again. I am not interested in paying a girl $10-15 an hour to sit on her ass and watch TV.
Thankfully, Mr. Sexy and I have been incredibly blessed recently by two people who offered to watch our kids and refused to accept payment. We have only used one so far for rehearsal nights (did I mention Mr. Sexy and I are both in a play?!). The kids LOVE HIM. He helps them with homework. He is learning their favorite songs. He tells them fun stories. AND he did my dishes one night because he thought I seemed really stressed out about it (which I was). We also worked out a deal with him: When the kids go to bed he does some computer work for Mr. Sexy and we pay him for that work. Everyone is happy.
I often struggle with the fact Marie is 13, a great age for babysitting. But yesterday she was coloring and watching Denai eat crayon after crayon like it’s something we all do all the time. ::sigh:: A mom can only hold on to hope for so long…