“You know the best thing I ever did? Like total-life-changing thing EVER…”
Here I was at a BBQ on Sunday, talking/whining/laughing about how crazy life with little kids is (a very common discussion in my world) and one mom-friend suddenly has me on the edge of my seat.
What?! I asked.
“I hired a sitter who was more like a house manager” she said.
And then she explained: Her kids were in school from 8:20-3. She needed someone for about three hours a day, but she didn’t really need much help with her kids – she needed help with her house and her endless to-do list.
- The laundry
- The tidying
- The grocery shopping
- The meal prep
- The birthday present buying, wrapping and storing
- The toy room organizing
- The dry cleaning pickup
- The spring/winter clothes swap and donation of old clothes
I know all of you with two working parents and kids have a similar list!
She said that when she was working full time, she just couldn’t get all this stuff done. Or if she could, things were slipping through the cracks and she felt exhausted/stressed. So she hired a super organized sitter who could come one hour before school pick-up to do things outside of the house, pick up the kids, take them where they needed to go, and come back and watch them while she made dinner and did more organizing.
It turns out that my friend’s not alone. 2015 Care.com back to school sitter job posts show that parents are looking for sitters who do more than… sit. The bulk of after-school hours are spent driving to dance and soccer and hockey and all the incredible opportunities kids fill their lives with. So they’re hiring drivers with specialties that include boo-boo healing, deflated-ego-after-a-big-loss nurturing, kid-cheering and house-maintaining. Sitters who can get kids where they need to be and then rally to get home, get showered, do homework, start dinner and get those stinky clothes in the wash!
And then there are the super savvy parents hiring sitters who help keep the house from looking like a tornado went off in it. Imagine coming home to a home cooked meal – that you didn’t have to chop or cook? Yeah, that’s the new sitter. Oh, and your laundry is clean, folded and put away. And the three birthday parties the kids have this weekend? Yup, the gifts are in the hall closet, wrapped with tags on them saying who they’re for.
This is REAL, GUYS!! I know it sounds like a dream world. But I speak the truth. Two other moms at this BBQ spoke up and were like, oh yeah, I do this too. Does it cost more? It probably should. But you only need this person for about 3-5 hours a day.
Here’s what you do. If you’re a parent, you create your profile post to outline exactly what you want done: laundry, grocery shopping, meal prep, driving kids. And you interview the applicants who best respond (and who can cook a mean chicken parm!)
If you’re an after-school sitter, you’re getting your profile ready too – and really marketing how organized you are, your love of cooking and keeping the house in order for the parents to come home to a serene place. Then, you’re applying for jobs and highlighting these skills right in your application.
So, what do you think? Would you pay a little more an hour for an after-school sitter who made your weeknights stress-free?