Day Dates + How to Find Babysitters
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Saturday morning Jordan and I went on a day date. I had scheduled a babysitter, but instead of canceling when my work scheduled changed Jordan and I went out! Day dates, as parents, are far superior to evening dates. For one thing Phoenix is awake the entire time so it's a legit break, but also I'm not nearly as tired.
We had a gift card to a coffee shop, so we grabbed coffee and breakfast and pursued several antique stores nearby. We arrived home just in time to put Phoenix down for a nap. Saturday morning dates are where it's at!
Speaking of dates, the parenting question I get asked the most is "how do you find your babysitters?"
Our need to find babysitters was not initially for date nights, they were for work purposes. I work part-time so day-care isn't practical and the parent's day out program Phoenix is in now wasn't open until he was 12 months. We also do not live near family, so even though Phoenix is in school we still need back-up childcare.
We naively thought Jordan and I could finagle our work schedules to eliminate the need for babysitters, but Phoenix is a busy kid. He didn't nap reliably and we quickly realized not having childcare was costing us our sanity.
When I first started putting out the feelers for babysitters, I quickly realized I needed not one but an arsenal of babysitters. If they are in college their schedules will change a lot.
So, how do you find babysitters when you don't live near family and recently moved to a new city? Begin within your network. Do you or your husband work someplace where they have interns or part-time receptionists? I work in retail, so I have an advantage (many of my co-workers babysit for us) but Jordan reached out to interns at his co-working space. I had friend's of friend's of friend's who I didn't even know babysit Phoenix.
Letting someone I don't know watch Phoenix might sound crazy, but I once was the friend of a friend who babysat families. Roommates of my co-workers babysit. Also, don't hesitate to ask your friends who have kids. Could their babysitter work for you too? Maybe they need a babysitter on Saturday morning, but you need someone Tuesday afternoon. Is there a distant connection in your city? Someone your sibling went to college with and happens to live in the same town?
If referrals are leading to dead ends or you simply need to find a babysitter quickly there are many online services. Sitting Made Simple offers professional childcare from local experts. By paying a yearly registration fee you have access to their team of sitters!
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You might notice a theme, but it's important to get creative and ask questions when trying to find babysitters. I know adults who work full-time, but still babysit on the weekends for extra money. You never know who might want to help!
How did you find our babysitters?