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Boundaries in the home with a nanny are naturally confusing.There are two basic ways you relate to others: There’s a business relationship with someone or a family relationship. The business relationship is based on: ‘I have something for you”. The basis is performance. You perform for me and I perform for you. The family relationship with someone is based on: “I am something to you. It’s what I am to you. The basis is a commitment. A permanent committed relationship. Here’s an example of how these two relationships work out.

There are two different ways you can live in someone’s house. Generally, you’re either there as a tenant or as a family member. If you’re a tenant, the person who owns the house is your landlord and you rent their house. You can have a pretty good relationship with them as long as you pay the rent and respect the property.

But the relationship has structure and rules that are mechanical.There are rules for the tenant and the landlord also has certain rules he must follow. The landlord has to do maintenence. You can have a pretty good relationship, but the basis of your approach and the interchange is a mechanical one of goods and services. One of the problems is that when you live in a house and you see the boarders every day, the relationship continually tries to move off the business relationship into friendship. You start to not just give goods and services but listen to their problems and and start to move into friendship, and it’s hazardous. What happens when you have to put the screws to somebody when they aren’t paying the rent and they have become your friend and they’re not taking care of the property? A business relationship is a conditional one, but family relationships move towards being unconditional.

The business relationship is based on what you have–performance, and the family relationship is moving towards who you are. One is conditional and one is unconditional. One has to do with your doing and one has to do with your being. You’ve gotta watch out. You can’t become friends with the tenants.

At home, you’re supervising a nanny and you’re both crossing boundaries and she becomes your friend. Now what happens when she’s not towing the line, not coming through on her job description? Or, you start leaving the dishes in the sink on Sunday nights, and soon, it’s every night. It’s very difficult, very dissonant. There are two basic types of relationships and there’s a need to keep the tension between the two.

At home, you’re supervising a nanny and you’re both crossing boundaries and she becomes your friend. Now what happens when she’s not towing the line, not coming through on her job description? Or, you start leaving the dishes in the sink on Sunday nights, and soon, it’s every night. It’s very difficult, very dissonant. There are two basic types of relationships and there’s a need to keep the tension between the two.

You can also be living in the home of your parents and you’re not a boarder, you’re a child. The paradigm is different. The business relationship should work like: “If you perform you’ll be accepted. The way the family relationship works, is “that since your’re accepted, you should perform”. It’s two completely different ways of relating.

We’ve recently have had nannies reporting clients breeching boundary lines by asking indiscrete personal questions. When the nannies try to deflect those questions, the clients will as much say, “I feel I can’t trust you, because you’re not being completely open with me.”

We all want someone who will love our children as much as we do and who’s like a member of the family, and yet we need to walk that tightrope, so the relationship stays friendly, but business-like. I’m not saying this is easy, and the longer you’re together, the more you need to work on it.

If the boundaries at your house have gotten soft and mushy, how can you take back ground?

1. On your next Monthly Meeting share your failure to maintain the proper relationship. Nannies can have hurt feelings when Moms go back and forth on boundaries. One Nanny had a Mom who regularly made the nanny her ‘best friend’ and then ‘cut her off’ emotionally. when she realized she’d gone too far.  Another Mom kept the nanny as her BFF, but when family came to visit, she became ‘The Help’.

2. Have regular evaluations with your nanny, either quarterly or at six months and a year. We have a Performance Review available. Just reply to this email and we’ll forward it to you.
3. Be award that you may have crossed her boundaries as well, perhaps by regularly coming home late and not expecting to pay extra, or slowly adding to her work load without mentioning any reimbursement, or by sharing marital discord with her.
4. If you’ve never sat down and filled out a Working Agreement, it’s not too late. This agreement delineates her responsibilities, schedule, reimbursement and many other practical guidelines that you decide on together.
5. Keep evaluating if you’re both walking the tightrope. Be friendly, but not BFFs. It just doesn’t work.

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Education deeply impacts the personality of  a young child and is a much broader subject than we normally realize.

Education affects personality.

Your nanny has enormous influence on the personality and academic achievement of your child by creating the right educational environment for them.  The intelligence environment that you and she cultivate will make all the difference in the world for your toddler.

Speaking Broadly About Education

I’m speaking in the broadest sense that goes way beyond workbooks or organized learning or classrooms. Most of her time will be spent educating your toddlers in three vital areas of life until they develop mastery themselves:

1. Morals, health and safety and life skills.
Your child’s personality is greatly shaped by her focused, continual, passionate attention to these goals. She will be teaching your child to be patient, thoughtful, caring, goodhearted, respectful, unselfish, generous and responsible.

2. Healthy Habits
Her second goal is to help her develop healthy habits like washing hands, brushing teeth, picking up toys after playing with them, making his bed, helping with simple chores, like folding  clothes, matching socks, putting away the silverware in the dishwasher, clearing the table.

3. How To Think
Along with these skills and mindsets, she must teach the child how to think, how to make sound judgements, how to apply logic and reason to her life.

Encouraging Strengths
Neither you nor your nanny can change your child’s genes or basic makeup, but you can recognize and work with them. You can minimize the negative traits,  encourage strengths, and maximize natural gifts.

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Tatum and McDonald: An adorable one year-old boy needs an experienced, enthusiastic nanny to help care for him every Saturday from noon-8PM (with flexibility). They are seeking someone with toddler experience who is going to actively engage and interact with their son. Salary: $15 or more depending on the right person. (REF#DLSAT)

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Why is it that babies of Mexican immigrants in the US have lower infant mortality in the first few weeks of life than average American women? In rural Mexico, Hispanic mothers also avoid postpartum depression, compared to 15 percent of US mothers. What are they doing differently? One reason is the “cuarentena” — 40 days of completely compulsory nurturing for the new Mom. For the first six weeks, family and neighbors come together to ensure the mother eats, sleeps and bonds with the new baby. There’s no cleaning, cooking, or errands. The outcome? A happy mother and a happy baby.
New mothers we see using our agency are typically sucessful professionals between 30 to 40, independent, with successful careers, used to being in control of their lives and overcoming challenges. Bringing home a new baby is overwhelming, and nothing can prepare her for that first one. Hospitals are not designed for sleeping, so by the time she arrives home with baby, she’s utterly spent. Not used to asking for help, her whole identity has radically morphed into how successful she feels she is at mothering. When I had my

firstborn, I’d never changed a diaper! How did that happen? In our culture, we live far from parents and extended family, and we think we should be able to do it all.
When my second baby was born, I had the blues. I wasn’t feeling any emotion towards my baby, and I’d run out of diapers. I stared out the window at the clean ones fluttering on the line. This was 1968 and dryers had yet to be invented. I was so emotionally spent, I couldn’t go get one. I finally got up to get a diaper, and a few months later, my emotions returned, but that experience has given me an inkling of understanding of what others go through.
Three causes of non-medical postpartum depression are a lack of sleep, poor diet, and clutter or disorganization. People used to a perfect environment are now unable to keep up with housework and making balanced meals.
Sleep is crucial now, but hard to get. Be sure the new mom naps during the baby’s nap. Get someone to take the baby at least a couple of hours a day so she can rest. The tiredness is intense.
Get some help. Being a new mom can be lonely and isolating if dad is back to work and family isn’t close by. A friend who can come over and fold some laundry or spend time with the new baby so Mom can get a nap or a shower, is invaluable. This isn’t so crucial for new moms, because they can sleep when the baby sleeps day and night, but after a second child, it’s helpful for a friend to come and take the older child on an outing. It’s pretty rough being dethroned by a new baby, and the older child needs some special attention.
Supplying meals for a new mom is so helpful. New moms need lots of veggies, foods rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and B vitamins such as Riboflavin to bolster against postpartun depression. Friends can send a gift certificate for your favorite resturant, or bring a home cooked meal that can be warmed up or frozen for later. Mealbaby.com is the perfect way to organize meals! It’s free and easy!
If Grandma can’t help or if you need space from family, hire a mother’s helper, a newborn specialist  or baby nurse for help at night, or a doula. A newborn specialist can be 24 hours 7 days per week, or just nights. A doula is there more for the mom, preparing meals, taking over baby care for a period, preparing meals, doing housework, or a full night shift. Both are helpful for answering questions, hands on education, and reassuring the new mom that she’s doing a good job.
If there’s someone doing housework, mom will feel free to rest, since naps are her only time to get caught up.
Listen. Care. Validate her feelings. She may break down and cry, feeling inadequate. What she needs now is understanding, listening, caring. Let her vent. Ask questions. Be curious. Don’t try to solve the immediate problem but aks more about how she’s feeling, giving her your time, and lelt her know you care. Most of all, she needs to know  she’s doing a wonderful job with her newborn.
Help her connect with a mom’s group or friends she can go on play dates with.
Offer to run errands for her or babysit so she can get out of the house by herself, or offer to run errands with her. Go with her for her six week check-up. Or offer to babysit she she can go out with her husband for a few hours.

Beth

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Share the true spirit of Christmas and be a part of helping children in 3rd world countries.
A Goat and Two Chickens for $100

We’re giving our nannies and families the opportunity to help children in third world countries get a goat and two chickens. Our goal is to raise $100, but if we go over, we’ll buy more for a second or third family. Click HERE to see more about the huge impact this makes for a family (i.e. the manure goes into the vegetable garden) and to donate directly to World Vision.
Please tell us how you give back to the community, and we’ll add $4.00 more to the goat fund!

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On Saturday November 3, Caring Nannies held it’s four hour Nanny Boot Camp.

This free course is designed for all nannies placed or being placed through Caring Nannies, and empowers them with greater skills and professionalism and gives families a higher level of care and service. Caring Nannies offers three training events per year, and we require our nannies to attend two.

Nanny Boot Camp is an ongoing event and our goal is to see every nanny have a chance to attend. It covers communication, boundaries, constructing a Working Agreement, developing a weekly Play Plan, using the Nanny Log, improving children’s behavior, consistency, age appropriate activities, child health and safety, discipline techniques, establishing routines, defining your role. We teach using role-playing, discussing typical scenarios that come up and the ethical way to handle them, practice writing out a typical curriculum for several ages, conflict resolution, developing a resume and portfolio, and interview success.

Comments from attendees included these: “Thank you for the time, caring and thoughtfulness that went into your Nanny Boot Camp today. You have helped all of us to step up a notch in our chosen profession. I value that you understand our genuine service and love for the children and families we serve while we carry on that service in a pretty hidden manner and are often not openly valued. I believe we all get that, and recognition, and appreciation are not our motives…. was kinda fun to hear that you ‘get it’.”

“Thank you for helping us serve that much better.”

“It’s great to hear from other nannies and real experiences. I appreciate your kind support to us. Your continued education and conferences equals professional nannies!” and “You’re making us feel valued as nannies. We nannies work pretty much alone and without support.”
We applaud the nannies who gave up their Saturday morning to increase their skills, and connect with us and others in their profession! These are people who keep on learning, growing and stretching to be the best of the best! Thank you for coming! We know there were many others who wanted to come but had problems with  scheduling, and we’ll host another class early next year.

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Jessica was downstairs with the children, ages 11 months and 2.5, when she heard an alarm go off upstairs once, then twice. She called 9-11 and police came and apprehended an intruder. Avery accidentally locked herself outside while the boys 2 and 4 were inside. She contacted the Grandma who lived nearby, who had a spare key. Kelly, one of our star nannies, noticed a man in the playground who didn’t seem to belong to the group and she called 911. The man was picked up, a registered child molester.

We don’t normally get tornadoes, hurricanes or flash floods in Phoenix but we have had dust storms, power outages and Arizona does have some slight earthquakes. You buy fire insurance and auto insurance, but have you discussed emergency situations with your nanny before they occur? What are your directives in the following situations: a stranger knocking at the door, power outage, car accident, flat tire, running out of gas, the alarm going off,  a runaway pet or  a child needing stitches?

Here are a some tips to insure your priorities are followed.

1. At your next monthly meeting, outline some possible scenarios and steps of action with your nanny
2. Consider getting CPR training yourself. When your nanny’s expires may be a great time to go together or simply review a youtube video.
3. Post a fire evacuation map with 2 ways to exit and a safe meeting spot outside the house. Nanny can practice Stop! Drop! Roll! with the children and crawling through the house in case of smoke.
4. Pool Safety. Fence the pool. No running around the pool. No children allowed outside without an adult.

Community Emergency. Carla, one of our veteran nannies, takes community preparedness classes and tells us the most important consideration is water. Electricity is what pumps the water when the generators go out, so on a long extended power outage there will be no water to flush the toilets, wash, cook or drink. We do have loss of power in Arizona occasionally. Think through all the scenarios if you have an extended outage. Don Sherman, a local Gilbert resident has free readiness workshops regularly. Check out his website, www.iwillprepare.com. Carla takes his workshops and is prepared to eat out of the refrigerator and then start canning what’s in her freezer.

Here’s what’s most important:

1. Water. Have a gallon of water per day per person for a period of two weeks. Have 5 gallon jugs stored.
2. Light. What will you do if the electricity goes out for an extended period of time? Do you have candles, and a way to light them? Candles can be set in a sink and burn safely. If you store batteries, recycle them periodically. Candles also bring a sense of warmth and comfort.
3. Food. Have canned food in the house that everyone will eat, like tuna, canned fruit, and cold cereal that the children will eat without milk.
4. Comfort food. Protein bars, hard candy (chocolate melts).
5. Fuel. A way to cook your food and a barbecue grill. Restaurants won’t have electricity and stores may be out of supplies and electricity. Their registers won’t run.  Have an extra propane tank or charcoal-plus extra  to boil water. Carla has almost 300# in her garage. You can get it on sale during holidays like 4th of July.
6. Fires. What will you do if the firefighter comes to your door and says “Get out! Your neighbor’s house is on fire.” Have a 72 hour kit, for food, medications, water, change of clothes, small first aid kit, a copy of important and irreplaceable documents and a current photo of you and everyone in the family in a ziplock bag.

This weekend, we’re conducting our Nanny Boot Camp covering the following topics. If your nanny hasn’t attended this 4 hour training session encourage her to get signed up. We have a few spaces left. Here’s the link 

Curriculum Planning & Scheduling
Child Development-Ages & Stages
Discipline & Building Self-esteem in Children
Physical Care & Safety
Nanny/Family Relationships
Professionalism: Ethics, Respect, and Responsibility
Situational Role Playing
Domestic Duties

Beth Weise 

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Jenny Riojas, Placement Counselor at Caring Nannies is pictured with the staff from ABC Nannies in Denver, CO and The Help Company in CA.

JENNY REPRESENTS CARING NANNIES AT 2012 APNA CONFERENCE IN WASHINGTON DC
On October 11-13, I was privileged to attend the 2012 Association of Premier Nanny Agencies (APNA) annual conference in Washington DC with top-notch nanny agencies from all over the US. Dynamic professionals in the domestic staffing industry networked, shared, and generated ideas to better serve our families and nannies in our own Phoenix community.

We shared ideas about how to exceed client expectations, how to attract top candidates and communicate our vision, expectations and boundaries effectively with our nannies. We want to create a common feeling of pride and belonging and to detail our commitment to them. Events like this help us stay on top of the lastest background checks, providing high quality customer service, and ways to improve our service to our trusted, loyal families. Belonging to APNA (Association of Premier Nanny Agencies) and the INA (International

Nanny Association) and DEMA (Domestic Estate Managers Association) signifies an adherence to rigorous standards and ethics in the direction we take our business. Caring Nannies is continually striving to improve our offerings and give each family the top-notch help they deserve.
We have a vision to be the premier agency in Arizona and we’re so grateful to our wonderful nannies and valued families for bringing us to the place we are now.
We feel that we are not only building a business but building friendships as well.  Since we are the only agency in AZ affiliated with APNA, we have much pride in attending these national conferences and implementing all that we learn to continue to be at the top of our industry.
I reunited with old friends, made new friends, toured the sights of Washington DC, and enjoyed a fulfilling, successful weekend!

Jenny exploring the White House and DC while attending the 2012 APNA conference.

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Beth and Jenny were excited to attend the inagural convention of DEMA The Domestic Estate Manager’s Association in LA the last weekend of September.

It was a testimony to the Estate Manager’s and Home Manager’s expertise in pulling off a perfectly coordinated, relevant event with exquisite attention to detail. We were able to network with vendors such as ADT, TROV, Miele, Pall Mall Art Advisors, Lugano Diamonds, Limolink and Pioneer Linens.

After a tantalizing lunch sponsored by TROV, Chicago Chapter President David Barrie and principal Chris Stephenson presented “Setting Service Level Expectations in Business and the Estate”. David Barrie then accepted the DEMA 2012 “Humanitarian of the Year Award”which was awarded to The Stephenson Family of Cancer Treatment Centers of America. CTCA has worked tirelessly to uphold the widely acclaimed “Mother Standard” of care in an effort to provide the very highest caliber of treatment and compassion to patients battling cancer.

An instructive woprkshop on “Acquiring and Caring for Fine Jewels” presented by Moti Ferder and his office manager Stuart Winston whose presentation underlined the importance of having the right company maintain and transport jewelry.

We were able to hear speakers like Charles MacPherson of Charles MacPherson Academy for Butlers and Household Managers discussing ‘Boundaries’, presentations by Chuck Horst & Doug Greenberg “Caring for Couture Wardrobes”, Avi Ben David’s “High Security Locks- eCylinders and Access Control, Alexander Dahlgren’s “How to Choose the Best Vendors & Contractors”.

Anita Heriot of Pall Mall Art Advisors presented “Art as an Asset: Protecting Your Client”. Bonnie Low Kramen provided insight into her experiences with her presentation, “For the Love of It: Game Changing Secrets from a Celebrity Assistant”. “Mastering the Arrangement of a Private Jet Flight”, was presented by Ngaire Duncan and Steve Feldman introduced members to “Recycling Luxury Kitchens”.

Session two included presenters Katie Vaughn and Mimi Brady of Westside Nannies who presented “Happy Wife, Happy Life: The Most Important Hire You Will Ever make” while Jim Henderson tackled “Why Downsizing is so BIG Today” with “Productivity Tips & Tricks”. Vickie Evans simultaneously provided members with instruction on utilizing Word and Excel in “Covering Excel & Word”.
Beth and Jenny with the representative from ADT

The last session of the day was kicked off by Teresa Leigh, of Teresa Leigh of Household Risk Management on “Conflict with the Family”.  In addition to Ms. Leigh, Shelley Whizin presented “What about You? The Balance Between Management & Personal Life”.
Click to view featured Highlights

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