Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Babysitter Shortage

I am madly, madly looking for a babysitter. Stop your snickering, it's no easy task. My usual cache of babysitters are either away, or already busy - seriously, this is peak babysitting period - make your holidays some other times sisters.

Along the way I have had some suggestions, and they have been helpful, though still not helpful enough to secure a babysitter. How do you screen your babysitters?

I have also been enlightened with a new agency that holds a kind of 'meet and greet' night - you go along and have a few bevvies and meet a whole range of potential babysitters. You take all their details home and then you can contact the ones you clicked with. Pretty cool idea huh? They're self-titled the 'speed dating service for parents and babysitters'.

Check out Meet a Sitter here.

It's a pretty neat-o idea, however it still doesn't problem solve the fact that I don't have a babysitter and going through an agency will cost around $130 for four hours. That's ridiculous... Isn't it?



Michele said...

great idea (the speed dating)

Been in the exact same position recently for a wedding. Both parents and inlaws away at same time (very thoughtless of them really) and all the usual suspects at the wedding of course!
Asked around for late teens/early 20s and came up blank - doesnt ANYONE babysit anymore? Are they all too busy updating their Facebook page and flipping burgers at Maccas?

Ended up finding the younger sister of some friends and she did a great job (earnt $50) but I couldnt really relax at the wedding wondering how my 2 yo was with her as theyd never met.

Knowing her family helped and she really was excellent -would pass her on but were in QLD ....and besides you may poach her I need a date night : )

Hope you get a good one (and not too pricey)

Megan said...

$130 for 4 hours! definitely ridiculous!! i used to babysit while i was in uni which was the not too distant past and $15 an hour was the way to go back then.
i need to quit teaching and go back to babysitting, i reckon i'd make more!

another place you could try is at the education building of your nearest universities. you have more of a chance of someone good with kids, flexible hours, most will already have police clearances from their teaching pracs and a bit of money off the books to add to their meagre centrelink money definitely doesn't go astray. just look for a noticeboard and pin up a flyer. may not help for this current night but can never have to many options later down the track!

good luck finding one

claire said...

when do you need a babysitter for?

Little Ted Canvas said...

Not easy! A few ladies I met through kinder decided to do each other favours, kind of like I'll call you & you'll owe me one. Not a bad idea & free! Just takes a little planning ahead, so not very helpful to you right now is it - sorry! Good luck...

Cath from chunkychooky said...

As a former nanny I would ask the potentials the following:
do you have first aid certificate?
what do you do if someone is choking?
do you have a criminal record?
do you smoke?
do you drive? do you ahve a good driving record?
We have soem gorgeous younger girls who will do it for $5/hr- I know as IF I would pay someone that small amount - its wrong. we give them $10 and hour. thye are stoked and love us.
If I was closer i would share- ahev you tried the local TAFe- there would be people doing a child care course that might be looking for something?

sophie said...

That sucks Lexie! Can I help out?

Jodie said...

Have you no teenagers in your street?
As the parent of the street babysitter I can tell you it is a bargain. She gets paid about $5 an hour and she rings ME every two minutes if something goes wrong. I change nappies , I help bathe, I help put to bed...and she gets paid.

Seriously, go local ! You don't have to drive them home or pay for a taxi !

Shelley Trbuhovich said...

i'm with jodie, sweetie. i had a very big birthday party recently and realised ONE WEEK beforehand that every carer of my little people would be partying with me (bad mummy!!). i remembered my beautiful neighbour across the street who i only knew with a wave and a chat, but intuition told me she was ok - 30-something, two kids of her own - and ran over to ask if there was any chance at all she could help out? she was so delighted she left ME a note to say thanks for the honour and trusting me with my most precious...i lived on that note for a months afterwards. all the best in your search. x

katiecrackernuts said...

Don't you know anyone with a 15-16 year old you could trust? They charge like a wounded bull, and as long as there's a responsible mum nearby (again that you know and trust) it's all good. What happened to a time when we got the kid next door in? I was always the kid next door. Made a killing.

teddybearswednesday said...

Another reason why you should move to Melbourne, I'd happily sit the kids for nicks.
Good look, though.
PS has anyone ever thought it's a weird word, babysit?
You think when they invented the word they could have could up with a more appropriate word than sit

Christina Lowry said...

I haven't had any luck with babysitters either. No one has been keen because Cohen is being "breastfed" so obviously he can't be away from me for an hour or three. What? He is 13 months old! Even my husband is scared of taking him out for the day in case he wants a feed. Gosh, give him his sippy cup, I'm sure if I'm not around he won't want me.

Opps, I am turning this into a personal bitch session, aren't I? Do you have any other mothers around that could baby sit? Some of the mothers I still talk to from the now defunct mothers group have offered to baby sit, but I have been reluctant as they have their own one year old to deal with! Perhaps if they had older kids...


Two Tuesdays said...

All the babysitters are in Bali. Having the fabulous holidays that we wish we could have on the pounds of flesh they willingly extract in the name of superior child care (and directly proportionate to parental guilt)

More power too them I say.

(the above is based purely on personal experience of my erstwhile babysitting career)

Emma said...

Wow, now I know why I've never used a babysitter if that's what they cost. I've always known that it's going to add to the cost of a night out so have managed to get away with using their paternal grandma once in a blue moon... although now it's just me and the kids and I want to move down under I don't think I'll be having a social life that doesn't include kids for the next 10 years ;) Oh well... c'est la vie! Thing is I wouldn't trust my two to behave with anyone else... oh well, one of them is nearly 13 so I can get him to sit his sister (or is the other way round!) in a year or so's time - yay!