October 14, 2010

A Memorable Babysitting Job

Mama's Losin' It
Kathy over at
Mama Kat posts weekly writing prompts. It works like this: you choose a prompt, post it on your blog, and come back and sign Mr. McLinky. Be sure to sign up with the actual post URL and not just your basic blog URL (click on the title of your post for that URL). For good comment karma try to comment on the three blogs above your name!!

The Prompts this week are:
1.) ….and then I realized it was all a dream.
2.) The biggest Halloween trick (or prank) you ever pulled.
3.) Why I’m not inviting my mother to read my blog…
4.) Share a photo that represents how you see yourself.
5.) A memorable babysitting job.

I chose the last prompt to write about.

I do not have just one memorable moment while babysitting. I have many and they are all positive! Babysitting was a huge part of my life. I often babysat 2-3 times a week. I was one of the best if not the best babysitters. I don't mean that to sound cocky but I seriously was and I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that I loved babysitting and I still do! I didn't look at it as a job instead it was a time for me to kick back, relax and create some really great memories for myself and the kids I was watching.

I have babysat for numerous families over the course of my 16 year career. The families that stick out in my mind the most are families who I spent multiple years with. I have watched their kids grow (some in to their 2nd year of college) and I believe that I have contributed to the people they are today. These families are: The Best-Pero's, Calverley's, Debbrecht's, Gorman's, Magnusson's, McGranes, Ruffner's, Schultz',Sier's and Wudyka's. I continue to babysit now that I am married for families here in Lafayette and I love it!

I started my career babysitting at a young age. I can't exactly remember how old I was when my next door neighbor Maureen had Patrick but it was somewhere around 10. I would go over to their house most days after Maureen got home from work to help with Patrick while she started dinner. I continued to babysit for the Siers until I was in college, Patrick was almost 10 himself and he had two other siblings, Nathan and Mary.

Another moment that sticks out in my mind is the story behind how I got my first "part-time babysitting job". This job was for the Calverley family. My dad and I were headed down our street on a walk one fall afternoon when we heard some commotion from new neighbors that we hadn't met yet. It turns out that their dog, Willie, had decided to hunt a squirrel and said squirrel was laying bloody in their front yard. My dad decided to stop and help MaryBeth clean up the dog. I headed home, too much blood for my liking. They struck up a conversation about babysitting and I landed my first job on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays from 3pm - 6pm for two girls, Haley (6) and Cassie (3). I babysat for the Calverley girls and their younger brother Jack until they moved up north in 2001 (I think but I try and block that memory out of my mind).

Another babysitting memory is from when I went to interview for a job in college. It was for the Gorman family (Alexis at the time was 10 and Ashley was 7). I was certain that I had failed the interview. I confessed to them my extreme dislike of big dogs (they had a german shepherd golden retriever mix), and the fact that I the only time I rode a horse was in 5th grade and I cried until they let me get off and sit that event out. The youngest daughter Ashley wouldn't say two words to me and I was certain that I would need to find employment elsewhere. But little did I know that I was given raving recommendations from past employers and it turns out the girls did like me they just needed time to warm up to me. That was also the case for me and the animals. Abby is on of the only dogs I will say I actually love and after 3 years of horse lessons, I can brush a horse, clean out shoes, put on a saddle and even feed Kassie an apple from my hand. Those 3 years were some of the best years of my life and loved sharing every minute of it with Rich, Kim, Alexis, Ashley, Abby, Snickers and Kassie!

Throughout my babysitting career many memorable moments were created. We did crafts, went on walks, took vacations together, jumped for countless hours on the trampoline, went to horseback riding lessons, played with play-doh, went to the library, rode bikes, played at the park, played in the leaves, went to Disneyland, played baseball, went sledding, took Dairy Queen runs and many more fun activities.

The people I babysat for become more than just employers to me they were and still are some of my best friends. We have gone through a lot emotionally together. Many of them were there when I swam in my first swim meet at Berkley High, attended my first dance, broke up with boyfriends, fought with friends, graduated high school, decided what college I was going to attend, first met Phil, got engaged to Phil, and married Phil. I still talk with them today and I try and visit most of them at least once a year when I am home in Michigan. I can't believe how much they grow in between the times I visit and I cherish the notes, pictures and phone calls I receive in the mean time. These memories and kids will always be a part of my life.

With that I will leave you with a picture collage of some of my favorite people :) For some reason I don't have scanned pictures of all the kids I babysat so a few are missing.

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