Thursday, February 25, 2010

Travel Together: Family-Nanny Travel Tips

No matter what time of year we get questions from both nannies and families asking for travel tips – how to make the experience positive, how to set expectations, how to prepare, and many more. Nannies who travel with their employer families and families who have their nannies travel with them have a unique experience ahead of them. The key is planning and preparing in advance, being clear about expectations and boundaries. The bottom line is that this is the family’s vacation and the nanny is included as the child care provider. Ideally everyone should come home with fond memories and good feelings.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Olympic Fever

I love the Olympics! I have to confess I try to see as much of it as possible. When the children in my care were little we would celebrate these weeks with fun activities which included our own version of the Olympic experience. We made a "luge" track using the slide on the swing set and banking up snow to create a couple of turns. It was fun to make and had us thinking about the engineering involved. We discovered how sharp a turn we could maneuver and techniques to make the run really smooth. Then we had weeks of enjoying our luge track.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Bring the Beach Indoors

By Colleen O'Connor

Dreaming of a warm getaway? If you can't head for the beach, do the next-best thing and bring the beach to you! This is a great way to help children stave off cabin fever on a dreary February day.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Nanny Plus Playmate"

By Colleen O'Connor

Many people seeking employment as nannies want a job to which they can bring their own child along. Nannies from the Heartland does place these candidates, but only in rare circumstances. Typically we will place a "nanny plus playmate" candidate only when she is an incredibly experienced nanny and has worked with our agency before.

Some nannies want to bring their child to work on a regular basis, while others may only ask to do so during school breaks or other special circumstances. In the right situation, a nanny who brings her own child can be a wonderful and unique asset to your family. Here are some reasons why:

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Nanny Versus Babysitter

People often wonder, "What is a nanny? Isn't she just the same as a babysitter?" This couldn't be further from the truth. While babysitters are qualified to supervise children for short periods of time, nannies are extremely skilled in providing long-term care for a child's intellectual, emotional, physical, and social development needs.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Creating a Great Nanny Job

By Colleen O'Connor

Even in an employer's market, the best jobs will attract the best candidates. When hiring a nanny, create a position that will appeal to the kind of caregiver you seek. Here are some criteria to consider:

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Valentine's Day Party Ideas

By Kelly P. Miller

Every year, I plan a Valentine's Day Party for the children I care for.  This year is no exception!  We have invited the neighbor nanny and children over, and we are in the midst of planning games and activities.  Here are some fun games I have found:  1. Conversation Heart Challenge -- see who can make the biggest tower out of conversation hearts in 30 seconds!  2. Heart Target Game -- tape a large heart to the floor.  Give every child a balloon ... blow up the balloon, but don't tie it!  Have the children let go ... whoever is closest to the target wins!  3.  Hugs and Kisses Jar -- fill a jar with chocolate hugs and kisses ... whoever guesses the closest to the number in the jar gets to keep the jar! We will also do a craft and read the book "Queen of Hearts" by Mary Engelbreit.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Communicating with Your Nanny

Family-nanny communication can be challenging because the relationship is more personal than a typical employer-employee relationship. This New York Times article discusses the issue and how parents can be effective employers.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Better Business Bureau Accreditation: What does this mean?

By Mary O'Connor

Nannies from the Heartland is proud to be a BBB accredited business with an A+ rating. We are the only BBB accredited nanny service in Minnesota. In order to be an accredited business we agree to abide by the following standards: