Thursday, January 25, 2007

Hello? I’m the New Dad, Need the Info.

Normally, I like this blog to be witty & fair succinct. Not necessarily pithy, but close to it with only a little bit misdirection and/or misleading information.

But I seemed to have high-centered on an item and I need some advice in order to make the best possible decision.

As we wrap up the pregnancy, making our curtain call as it were, P.Pie and I have been looking at nannies and/or daycare services that handle infants. And I’m feeling like the local idiot at an Algonquin Round Table discussion.

Don’t misunderstand; I can bluster up enough bravado to look like I know what I’m talking about. I’ve written copy for a diverse group of companies about things that I have little or no prior knowledge of.

I can BS like a pro.

You want to engage me in a conversation on the inevitable move from hard drives to flash drive based memory? I read an article in Wired about it last month.

Want to argue the finer points of the global effects of local economics? I read The Atlantic (at the dentist’s office).

What’s the latest haps on CSI? No problem.

The state of lo-fi rock? Sure.

I can muddle my way through lots of things.

But hiring a nanny/daycare for my flesh and blood seems to be out of my sphere of knowledge.

I don’t know where to begin. All I know are the horrible things I see on salacious TV newsrags like Dateline/48 Hours/ 20/20.

In my nightmares dreams, my nanny interviews go something like this –

“So, Ms. Nanny, I reviewed you’re resume and I see that you recently left your last family.” Of course the nanny recognizes that a) this isn’t a question, and b) I might an idiot.

But if I am an idiot, then I’m a dangerous idiot.

So I change tacks and try to force a confession out of her. “Have you been cleared of the abuse charges?!”

At this point P.Pie takes over the interview process and I continue to babble dialogue from my internal private detective movie in a poor imitation of Woody Allen doing a poor imitation of Humphrey Bogart.

Wisely, they both just ignore me.

Secretly, I think they both feel sorry for the twins.

So it comes down to this – other than asking them if they’ve stopped beating children, I don’t know what else to ask.

Any suggestions? And what’s a fair price for twins – an arm and a leg?


Anonymous Mike said...

We have been so lucky to have my mom watch the kids on the days my wife works...for about 4 years now....for free.

I'd be lost, too.

You might try seeing if you can get them to babysit for a day when you can be around the house and just watch what they do and see if you like their personality.

1/26/2007 5:22 AM  
Anonymous golly/ lolly said...

Plant secret cameras!!

1/26/2007 7:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a different Mike.

We got a great daycare; it's small, albeit a bit expensive because it's private (here in Quebec, most daycares are public and about half the spots are $7 per day, meaning that you can't get a spot because everyone wants one). The nice thing is that the lady who runs it had twins herself. It shows in the way she would help bring one out to the car when they were little. Just make sure you get someone you trust with your kids; that's the big thing.

1/26/2007 7:17 AM  
Blogger Stacy said...

The great thing about a nanny is that they come to you - meaning you don't have to try to get two kids out the door everyday. You can leave them in their jammies, sleeping! if need be.

And, I'm told that some nannies will help clean and/or cook. But, ours didn't.

Our nanny cost about $2200/month. We paid hourly, reported it to the IRS, had worker's comp insurance - it was quite a pain. But, it was worth it.

We did that until they were 2 - and then they went into a prive Montessori daycare. We're saving some money now (down to $1500/month) - and they are learning a lot and interacting with kids.

1/26/2007 10:04 AM  
Anonymous Gidge said...

This is why I keep my husband drugged and convinced that Stay at Home Dad is the wave of the future.

1/28/2007 9:52 AM  
Blogger radioactive girl said...

I think it depends if you are going to have a nanny come into your house, or you are going to drop your kids off somewhere. I watch two kids a few days a week in my house, but I know I don't charge them as much as I am supposed to. Babies are supposed to be quite expensive, because they are hard to take care of. Twin babies are really hard to take care of (I'm sure you already knew this so I hope I am not scarineg you!) Finding someone to take care of twin babies is going to be expensive, but to find the right person will be worth it. I wish I lived near you because I would love to snuggle twin babies again! Good luck finding someone.

I think the questions you ask are not nearly as important as getting a feel for the persons personality because whatever their attitude, they will be around and influencing your babies daily (or however often you use them.)

1/30/2007 6:43 AM  
Anonymous big timber said...

we have twins (18 month olds) and a 5 year old and we end up paying $17 an hour, that includes my wife being in the home for a large part of the time. as far as finding a good one, try them out, have them come over an interview and then based off the list that pass have them spend time with you, your wife and kids, that is how we found ours and she is great... and all our friends that have seen her with the kids alone at the park agree.

btw, it has been 18 months and we still don't get a full night's sleep, you have no idea what you are getting into, just go in with a open mind and a heart full of love for the twins and your wife as that is all that is going to get you through...

1/31/2007 10:41 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Being from a small town in the South the cost of daycare isn't THAT horrible. We pay for our Grandbabies day care, 3 year old and 2 year old, at a church run daycare... $500 a month total for the two of them.
But not everyone is that lucky. Be very careful who you bring into your home.... we've all heard the horror stories.. that is why I think daycare SOME TIMES wins out.. because there is more than one set of eyes watching what is going on....
Have you ever thought about moving to a small town? in the South? Yall Come... Good Luck with babies and childcare!

2/01/2007 10:20 PM  

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