March 4, 2012

Babysitter's Club

After ranting and raving about my pregnancy frustrations, I really needed to take a time out and focus on something that I can truly appreciate, and show a little gratitude for.

And last night was my answer.

Every single family needs a good babysitter. Whether it be a grandparent, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, cousin, neighbor, a YW... you just need one.

{There is no possible way that it is ever good for a marriage to not have someone else you can depend on to watch your kids.} Especially for date nights.

Kurt and I have been pretty good about getting date nights in. Not all of them turn out great.. but at the very least,  it is soooooo nice to relax without the kids, not be at work, and enjoy a movie/meal without something getting thrown at our heads or spilled on us.

When we were back at home in California, we had some pretty fantastic babysitters:

1. Grammies & Grandpa
2. Nana & Papa
{I mean, you can't beat the grandparents!}

When we moved to Utah I was so nervous about finding someone who we could trust that lived close. I know that Kurt has lots of family up here, but I always feel bad trying to ask them because they all have so many kids of their own.. that it would pretty much drive me crazy if I were to add two more to the mix.

So, we decided to turn to our YW (young women organization- a church thing). Thankfully we had a list of YW babysitters, age, and phone numbers {EVERY WARD SHOULD HAVE THIS}. Being new, we only recognized one name on the list: McCartnie S. , our next door neighbor. We had met her parents the day we moved in and we liked them immediately, which is a good sign right off the bat.

A few months later,  I asked McCartnie's mom about her babysitting, and she reassured me that she would LOVE to babysit and that she actually enjoys it. {complete opposite of myself back in the day}

Let me just say, I am so {INCREDIBLY GRATEFUL} for our fantastic babysitter and neighbor. My kids absolutely love her. Kurt and I never have to worry about them at all - first off, because we know she'll take great care of them, and second, if an emergency were to arise, her parents are right next door. {and she puts up with our messy house}. 

Which brings me to my next little thought...

my babysitters.

{cue dramatic music}

Let me just say that Dakota {my brother} and I have had some pretty interesting people babysit us.....

There are two categories for the people who watched us. Loved vs. Loathed

Here's my side of some Babysitting Tales (of the ones I can remember- Lolo, you might have to share some memories you have in the comments...):

#1 My grandma. 
They have this really fantastic interesting house with practically a rainforest for their backyard. She made us shell noodles and hot chocolate, tortillas with cheese,  and her famous chocolate truffles. At night, when it was time for bed, she let us watch a little bit of the TGIF (you know you remember that!) and wake up Saturday morning for some cartoons (back when cartoons on saturdays were AWESOME). She had a pool..too. It was pretty awesome. My grandparents always tell the story on how I used to refuse to leave her house by hiding under the table and not letting go of the leg... That should pretty much explain everything by itself. 


#2 Let's just call her Mrs. Gulch.
When we moved to England we were obviously without Grandma to babysit us. So my mom and dad came up with two, very different, babysitters. Mrs. Gulch looked and acted just like her {given by me} namesake. I'm not lying. Well, from what I can remember this is what she looked like. I'm sure she was young {she seemed ancient} and just a plain girl . But we all know that little kids tend to want to be around pretty people.. I think it's just in our nature.  ANYWAY, she scared the living daylights out of me. She was super strict and did everything on a schedule.. kind of like if Mary Poppins had an evil twin. The biggest thing with her is that she would make us take a bath for bed time. OK.. so that's not that bad, right? Well, try taking a bath with TWO inches of water!!! She absolutely refused to fill the tub more, no bubbles, no nuthin'. and it was cold. COMPLETE MISERY FOR A 6 YEAR OLD! 


#3 Julie.
I'm pretty sure that's what her name was. SHE WAS AMAZING. From what I remember, she looks like Jodie Foster from the parent trap. She was young, energetic, told us crazy stories, let us run wild and wrestle her... We loved her. My mom claims that she only babysat us maybe twice or something, but man, she was one to leave an impression. My greatest memory of her is when we were playing on the stairs, and she would let us jump from the stairs, on to her back, and she would give us piggy back rides around the house. On one of my turns I jumped, and hit my front two teeth on her back... I guess they were already loose because they fell out. She wasn't freaking out, I can't remember if it was the same for me, but I remember us laughing thinking it was the funniest thing.  She was cool and fun. And I think she was Irish or Scottish or something.. either way she talked awesome.  


#4 The Dancing Queen. (the picture is a mere representation)
Now, I do remember her name, she was in our ward {after we moved back from Europe}, and she only babysat us once, I think.. mainly because we moved back next to our grandma... but man, that one time pretty much scarred me for life. Things were going ok... neither my brother or I really liked her to begin with... then she suggested that we turn on some music and dance. NOW, if you really know us Lenz's {and now Griffiths'} we love to dance.. secretly and in our home.. while drunk on giggles or tryptophan...but we do love to dance. So that was totally cool for me and my bro. 
WELL... she pulls out these crazy dance moves, like lying on the floor humping the air, some twirly break dance moves... she was out of control. Then she commented that we should learn how to dance like that because that's what all the kids in High School were dancing like. All I could think was.. "oh my gosh.. this is the weirdest thing I have ever seen. She's nuts." 
Needless to say, we convinced our mother to NEVER CALL HER AGAIN. Which seemed to work. Plus, I was getting old enough where it wasn't such a big deal to get a babysitter.

AND... Grandma would work out JUST FINE.

And I wont even go into the little devils I had to babysit!

Well, maybe...


Of all MY babysitting adventures, I had only ONE family that was awesome to sit for. They had five (or was it four, I can't remember) kids, their oldest helped me take care of their baby, they were all polite and well behaved. And ironically, it was the most kids I had sat for, and for the longest time {it was new years eve}. I guess it didn't hurt that my best friend at the time, Jess, came over to keep me company for a while after the kids went to bed. Little ANGELS!

The 'Others' included:
1. Flooding the bathroom and locking me out.
2. Locking me out of the house.
3. Threatening to tell her parents that I hit her,  if I didn't let her stay up late. (PURE EVIL THIS ONE)
4. Having a random man (the mom's roommate- she did warn me beforehand) come in and out of the apartment.
5. Having a little boy be obsessed with my boobs.
6. Hardly ever being paid.
7. Throwing food on the ground and demanding that I clean up after her. (PURE EVIL I TELL YOU!)
8. Missing the toilet.. (multiple times)

...that's all I can remember for now.. I think all the rest of the time I have blocked permanently from my memory.  However, each of those families said that the kids ended up loving me, and if I could return again for another time to babysit...

(Except for the EVIL ONE... I wonder what she told her parents.... I  shudder to think.)

Sadly, I was always too busy to babysit again... then I started High School and really was ALWAYS BUSY.

And now with babies of my own, I find it sooo much easier to love your own. THANK GOODNESS! To be honest, I still have a really hard time babysitting. I think I've been scared for life.


I'm sure you all have some pretty interesting stories about babysitting.. {you are more than welcome to share in the comments... hint hint :) }..

To close {hehehehe.. can you tell today was church?!} I would like to share a clip from a really funny movie. This is a classic amongst the Lenz men (my dad and brothers) DADDY DAYCARE:


Ashley Griffiths said...

I've been babysitting for 15 years now... and I've had wonderful kids, and little terrors. My favorite (not) is the line "you're not my mom". I may not be your mom but your still going to your room for a timeout. I've been hit, kicked, bit (mostly toddlers), thrown up on, pooped on, snotted on, most other body fluid can be added to this list. But then you get little boys like I did last night. He's 3 and was doing an art project. I told him "its so beautiful" and he replied "yeah just like you!". My heart melted, I had tears in my eyes. Kids may be poopheads sometimes but they can also make you feel like the most special person in the world.

I can't wait to hold my own.

Anonymous said...

We paid Mrs. Gulch extra to make your life miserable.

Megan said...

ha ha. i love your mom's comment. too funny. McCartnie is fantastic! And she LOVES your kids. I was with her once at the church when she saw your kids and ran over and hugged them. I loved babysitting as a yw. but I did babysit a few terrors. ;-)