September 11, 2014

10 Tips To Find and Keep a Great Babysitter

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Find a Babysitter You Trust and Keep Your Kids Happy During Date Night!

You are going to LOVE these great tips we have to get you out on date night with your hot hubby!! Enjoy your alone time withOUT worrying about the kids!

Keep a Babysitter

Trying to find a babysitter each time you want to go out on a date can be SUPER stressful! You have to worry about who to call, then when you do think of someone that seems trustworthy enough, you have to worry if they will even be available! It’s almost like dating all over again!! ;) I am SO jealous of all you lucky ladies who have family in town that beg to have the grandkids or cousins over - you are so lucky!! Take advantage!!

The Dating Divas know that one of the biggest reasons couples don’t go out on Date Night is because they don’t have anyone to babysit their children. It can be super stressful trying to find the perfect babysitter to watch your kiddos, especially if they are really young. So to help you all out a little, the Divas put our heads together and came up with 10 fantastic tips to find and keep a great babysitter.

1. Get Recommendations: The Diva’s all agreed that recommended babysitters are one of the best way to find a fabulous sitter. Talk with  your close friends for babysitters they have used and liked. Ask around at your church, community center, neighborhood park, or at any clubs you are in. Make sure you ask specific questions about them, i.e. if they are comfortable with watching infants, or high-energy kids - anything that would be important for your situation.

Detail

2. Start A Babysitting Co-op: If you want to have your children tended by experienced parents, then you will LOVE the idea of a babysitting co-op! A co-op is a great way to save money AND have your kids in responsible hands. What is the definition of a babysitting co-op? Basically, a babysitting co-op is a group of parents who agree to trade babysitting hours, using a ticket system. When you bring your child to another family’s home, you pay tickets. When you sit for other family’s children, you earn tickets! We have a whole post all about starting your own babysitting co-op that you should check out. The best part is that if you are the one organizing it, then YOU can hand-pick the families you want to swap with! :)

3. Get to Know Your Sitter: Take the time to get to know your sitter. What’s their family like? What are their hobbies, extra-curricular activities, and favorite things to do? I always loved it when the families I babysat for took an interest in me. If your babysitter feels like you care about them, they are more likely to be more interested in  your children. One of the Divas makes a point to send her favorite babysitter texts saying how awesome she is and giving her a birthday gift to let her sitter know how much they like her! You can get your kids involved in this too. They will love ‘surprising’ their favorite babysitter with a special gift.

Babysitter Present

4. Be A Tour Guide: When your sitter is new to your home, you will want to make sure they are comfortable with where everything important is located. Give your sitter a little tour when they first arrive. Make sure they know where diapers, wipes, and jammies are. Make sure all your contact info is current, is written down, and is in an obvious place. If you don’t have a landline and your sitter doesn’t have their own cell phone, make sure you have a way for them to communicate with you in case of an emergency. Diva Candice had a “Baby 101″ sheet that had all the details about their 4-month-old for their sitter. It included when she needed her bottle and how to prepare it, her napping schedule, favorite things, and other details that would be helpful for their babysitter. This was also a fun memory for them to put in their daughter’s baby book showing a ‘snapshot’ of her at 4 months old.

Babysitter Snacks

5. Snacks Bring Them Back:  Have specific treats set out just for your sitter. This is a great way to make them feel special and it keeps them going through all your cupboards when they want a snack. If you know your kiddos are going to be up for a while, you will probably want to include a special snack for them too. Your date night could be a great night to have a special movie theater night in your own home and have concession snacks for everyone. You can modify our fun Double Feature Date Night to make it kid and babysitter approved!

Becca-DoubleFeature-Concessions

6. Feed Your Kids Before You Leave: Or at least have a simple meal ready for your kids to eat. It can be busy enough for a young babysitter to watch your little darlings without adding on the extra stress of meal preparation. You may think a box of macaroni and cheese will be simple for them to whip up, but if they are not used to your stove or haven’t cooked much, it could spell disaster! This could be the night to order in pizza, or have cheese, crackers, yogurt, and fruit set out- anything to keep a meal easy.

Becca-BabysitterInABag-BagContents

7. Have Special Games: Some of you might have those little ones who cry and cry when you leave the house. The quickest way to solve this is to give your kids something to look forward to when the babysitter comes. If you have a game or two that ONLY come out when they have a sitter, it will give the kiddos something fun to look forward to and also ensure your kids look forward to having a sitter. They will be BEGGING you to go on a date! We have some great ideas on our site that you can quickly print out. Our Babysitter in A Bag is great for young kids and includes music, Play Doh, crayons, and fun! We also have some fun Date Night Envelope games that young and older kids will really look forward to… especially since they involve a little bit of a treat {wink!} The First Date Night Envelope has a “Don’t Eat Pete” game, as well as “The Kit Kat Game”. Date Night Envelope Part Two contains a fun and re-useable treasure hunt, we also have one more that is a crazy Skittles Game with a free printable too!

robin-skittles-pic1

8. Pay Them Well: Don’t be chintzy when it comes to paying for your babysitter. If you find a great babysitter that you and your kids just love, make sure to pay them accordingly!! They will appreciate it and it will make them say yes the next time you ask. Also if you say you are going to be back by 10, be back by 10 OR at least call and let them know you are going to be later. That’s just common courtesy {wink!}.

Pay babysitter money

9. Give Advance Notice: Give your babysitter as much notice as you can. When one of the Divas was a teenager, she had a family that would book her for the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month. This way she always knew she had a job those nights, and they always knew they had a sitter scheduled. It was a win-win! Plus, she LOVED this family, so she made sure to always keep those nights clear for them. {See why it’s a great idea to find a sitter you love, and make sure they enjoy babysitting YOUR kidlets as much as you enjoy having them?!?} Get it up on your calendar {you can even use one of our fun Date Night Stickers Here or Here } and you are set for the month!

10. Listen: Listen to your kids when they tell you about how things went with their babysitter. Listen to your babysitter and see if there is anything you can do to keep them happy. Listen to your heart and make sure you always feel comfortable with who you are leaving your children with.

Have fun finding a fantastic babysitter for your family and enjoy some great date nights! If you have any tips you’ve found have worked great we’d love to hear them in the comments below!

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Recent Comments

2 Responses to “10 Tips To Find and Keep a Great Babysitter ”

  1. Joanne says:

    Another person I would contact if looking for babysitter recommendations is the high school secretary especially if you are from a small town. As a substitute at our local school I actually stopped hiring a babysitter after seeing how she acted at school. I have asked the secretaries many times if they themselves would hire a certain student as a babysitter.

  2. Julie Julie says:

    Joanne,
    That’s a great tip I never thought of, thanks for the suggestion!


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