Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Why You Need to Find a Babysitting Buddy

My babysitting buddies have changed my life.  Really.  How would you like to get some time to yourself on a regular basis?  It's really so simple!

From last summer, when Emily and I started this switcheroo.

Tuesday is Emily's day.  We meet for 9:00 Mass, and afterwards she will take care of my children until 1:00.  She even picks up Anthony from preschool and feeds them both lunch.  That is my time to do whatever I wish.  Go shopping, take a nap, get a haircut, clean like a crazy person, sew, anything I need or want to do.  The next Tuesday I will take care of her daughter Emily Rose while Emily has some time to herself.

Thursday is Bridget's day.  Our sons are in the same preschool class, so we trade off Katie Rose and Molly at school.  While preschool is in session, one of us is has free time while the other babysits.

Tea party with Molly.  How cute is that!?

I think every mother should find a buddy or two.  It has made such a difference to have those few hours every week that I can count on for myself.  Sometimes it's truly "me time," other weeks not so much, but I know I will have it regardless!  It's also good for Katie Rose, because she gets two weekly playdates out of this arrangement!  I also get to socialize.  There is always time for chit-chat when we pick up and drop off.

It does mean that for every morning I have free, I have to babysit an equal amount of time as well as do some extra driving around on Tuesdays.  However, I still think it's completely worth it.  I really enjoy my friends' children, and Katie Rose gets along with them both just fine.  Even on days I'm the babysitter, I often find myself able to do some things around the house or yard while the girls entertain themselves.  It's no hardship at all.  It's also a good excuse to do fun outings to the playground or the zoo in good weather!

Best friends.
For such a simple concept, it really surprises me how few people I know do something like this!  Individualist society grumble grumble.  Mothers need to be able to rely on each other!  It is important to find the right buddy.  This might be tough if you don't have many friends in the same stage of life as you.  Can you think of anyone with a schedule similar to yours?  Children who get along well with your children and you wouldn't mind seeing every week?  Someone who lives close by or who could meet you somewhere convenient?  If so, screw up your courage and ask her to be your buddy!