Think Outside The Block

Teen smoking.jpg

Think Outside The Block

One of the hardest things a new mommy will ever have to do is trust her little bundle of love with a babysitter.  Sure, some mommies are fortunate enough to live with or near the grandparents or other trusted family and friends. (Lars and I don’t speak to our families, but that’s for another post)  But what about those mommies who have to rely on the oldest profession in the world…the dreaded babysitter?

“What do I do?”

“Who can I trust?”

“I’m never going out again!”

What about those mommies?  Never fear, J. Bev is here.

First, let’s take a history lesson.  Traditionally, mommies have used a local teenager from their own neighborhood, generally the child of a trusted neighbor.  Not a bad idea.  It harkens back to the days when we were a hunting and gathering society and had to rely on the village as a whole to raise our children. (Is that where the saying comes from?)  It worked well at first, but then…not so much.  You see, our villages have evolved into cities, and, although it breaks my heart to say it, our villagers have evolved into strangers that we absolutely cannot trust.  Why do we put so much trust in someone simply because they live near us?  Is it because we’ve seen them before?  Is it because we know they come from a good family?


The apple doesn’t always land anywhere near the tree.  Shoot, there is a girl on my street who started smoking drugs when she was 16 and her parents are Christian!  Should I have trusted that junkie, I mean neighbor?  What if I had employed that girl as a babysitter?  Would Annie Laurie now be smoking drugs too? Probably.

I profess this:  Let’s treat babysitting as employers rather than mommies.  Mommies are sweet and caring and loving.  We are nurturers.  Employers are mean bald men that can crush you like a grape.  More importantly, employers don’t come to you.  You come to them.  Want a job?  Put on a tie and pound the pavement.  Want to babysit my child?  Same thing.  Find me, tell me, and make me believe you.

What do you do, J. Bev?

My family has a fantastic babysitter, Amber, and I suggest you employ my methods in finding your own Amber.  As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I don’t trust my neighbors as far as I can throw them.  I actually haven’t spoken to anyone from my subdivision in over 4 years (except when Annie Laurie sells her Girl Scout cookies).  Life is good….or was good until the dreaded day arrived.  The latest Fast and Furious movie opened on a Friday night and Lars insisted we have a date night.  I was torn between romance and continuing my streak of never leaving the children alone.  Knowing I owed the job to someone who was actively seeking employment as a babysitter, I turned to our local CraigsList.  Immediately, I found hundreds of hard chargers just aching for the opportunity.  Ultimately, I chose a gentleman named David.   What he lacked in experience he more than made up for in charm, timeliness, and an endless amount of knock knock jokes!   Fast forward to today: my children are happy, healthy, and do not smoke drugs.  David babysat for us twice, but after a heart to heart, he confessed that he did not like children.  He is still a dear friend and our Life Insurance Agent…win-win!  We found Amber the same way and she has been with us ever since.

As usual, my way may not be for everybody.  I like to put my advice on a plate and let you take it if you’re hungry.  Like I’ve always said, just because I strive to be the best mom I can be does not mean that everyone else will do the same.

Be well.