I’m a new mom: Letter to the babysitter.

I can’t believe it’s been over 2 weeks since I actually posted a blog.  The funny thing is that I’ve blogged daily, but I never finish them and they just sit in the draft folder.  Forever.

I just got home from work.  I was happy to find Poppyseed happily playing in the kitchen with Sarah, a sweet babysitter I hired just for today.  I found Sarah last night using my friend’s website, BCSSitters.com.  I usually take Poppyseed to a little home daycare nearby, but since some of the kiddos are passing pink eye around as of late I really did not want to chance taking her today. I started to fret about her getting pink eye just a few weeks before our Japan departure, right on the heels of our pneumonia debacle.  So I decided to post a last minute request on BCS Sitters, and I was relieved when a babysitter called me just 45 minutes later.  (I love that website by the way.  My high school friend started the site last year as a resource for parents who are looking for child care.  All the girls are interviewed, background tested, etc etc.  I haven’t met one yet who I haven’t liked!)

I’m no stranger to child care.  I know moms who literally never leave their kiddos with anyone other than a grandmother.  I’d love to be that mother, but we don’t have many relatives nearby, so daycare and babysitters are inevitable when I want to go to work or out on a date with Oatmeal.  I always get a little worked up and nervous about it, so I usually end up typing out a little summary of our sweet girl.  I call it the Poppyseed Cheat Sheet.  I thought that this would be a fun thing to save, and where else to save it but on the blog.  Here’s what I left for Sarah today, after giving her a tour of the house and brief introduction of my wee one.  Clearly I am a first time mom.  Clearly.

Dear Sarah,

Thank you so much for helping us with Poppyseed today.  She is such a fun little baby, and we feel comforted as parents knowing she is in good hands.

Here is some basic information about her that may help you enjoy your time with her.

Contact information (don’t hesitate to call either one of us):
Lola – 979-472-xxxx
Oatmeal – 979-472-xxxx

In case of emergency, call one of us ASAP.  If it is a true emergency, do not hesitate to call 911 first and then call us.  Lola can drop what she is doing ASAP and come home.  We take Poppyseed to the St. XXXXXX’s Urgent Care Clinic for sudden illnesses (this is right next door to the Lowe’s) and they have all of our information on file.  You have our permission to transport her in your vehicle for emergencies.

Basics:
Poppyseed is a typical 14 month old, she just loves to play!  She loves to read her books, particularly the ones with little flaps and textures on each page.  She is a talented little stair climber, but she isn’t a confident walker just yet.  She loves to push her stroller around the house and typically puts whatever random objects that she can find in the stroller along the way.  She loves her baby doll, as long as the baby isn’t wearing any clothes.  🙂  You can feel free to take her outside and fill her little water table with fresh water using the hose on the side of the house.  She can stand barefoot in her diaper and play with the water.   She knows the words “Dada,” “Doose” (for Goose, our black dog), “dat” (meaning “that”), “no,” “Horse,” and a few others.

Diapers:
We cloth diaper Poppyseed at home, but feel free to use disposables if that makes you more comfortable.  If you do choose to use cloth diapers, just put the wet diapers in the sink in the laundry room.  You can throw the disposable diapers into any trash can that you see.  Sometimes she fusses during diaper changes, and it helps to tell her before you change her so that she knows it’s coming.  Either way, she can be squirmy!

Meals:
I left a green stainless steel container in the refrigerator with her lunch.  It’s easiest to give her the meat and veggies first and save the berries for last.  You can give her a banana for a snack, or any of the little baby food pouches in the door of our refrigerator.  She can have a bottle of raw milk after lunch, which will help her sleep better.  She can also have a sippy cup with water in it at any time.

Naps:
She normally naps mid-morning and early afternoon.  You can watch her for signals of being tired and make the decision to put her down.  She’ll usually rub her eyes or just get generally fussy and want to be held a lot.  I usually tell her it’s time to “take a little nap” or “go night night” and then take her upstairs.  I make sure she has a pacifier in her mouth and then sit in the rocker and read Good Night Moon to her.  Then I put her in her crib and tell her to “lay on your tummy” and get her to roll over so I can cover her in a blanket and then walk out of the room, shutting the door behind me.  She rarely fusses, but when she does I usually wait 5 minutes to see if she is just getting comfortable before going back into the room.  When I do go back in I will pick her up briefly and comfort her, saying “It’s okay, you need to take a little nap, let’s go night night” and then put her back down for a second time and will not go back in after that.  She will eventually go to sleep.

Playground:
There is a neighborhood playground a short walking distance from our house.  Just go to the end of our street and take a right and the playground is on the left.  She loves playing on both play sets (she needs help on the slides) and absolutely loves to swing.  You can put her in her pink car to take her there and she will love it.  I usually don’t put sunscreen on her unless she is going to be outside for more than about 45 minutes.

Neighbors:
You may see a blond lady with a little girl or a brunette lady with a son, and these are friends of ours.  Don’t be alarmed if they approach you or stop by the house to say hello.  No one else should stop by or come into the house while we are gone – feel free to lock up when you are here!

Dogs:
Our dogs are well trained when we are home, but can be really hyper and jumpy when we are not around to keep them in line.  If they are being annoying and you want to go outside into the back yard, feel free to put them in the garage.  Goose (the big black one) will bark as a way of greeting you but is not even remotely aggressive.  Tough (the gray one) will growl and attack strange men such as the UPS man, so best to keep him in the back yard or garage at all times so that you don’t have to deal with his shenanigans.  Tough will also wait at the back door and anxiously whine to be let outside, so I just leave him outside 99% of the time anyway.  Goose is pretty calm indoors and likes to rest on the landing of the stairs, where Poppyseed usually delights in climbing up to lean on him and pull on his ears.

Well there you have it.  I wonder what my babysitter notes will look like in a couple more kids.  🙂

An iPhone text I got today from our sitter.  Looks like she did just fine.

An iPhone text I got today from our sitter. Looks like she did just fine.

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