Thursday, August 31, 2006

Annie The Nanny


It occurred to me recently, that my accounts of our daily life around here have left out a very important person.

To those of you who don't know us "in real life" and only read the blog: I do not do this all by myself while my hubby is working. I have a wonderful sitter "Annie the Nanny" who comes 3-4 days a week for about 3 hours at a time. She is a college student who has her classes in the morning and usually arrives while the children are napping. This allows me to run errands without missing too much of their day. She also goes on outings with us that would be too hairy/dangerous without an additional set of hands...like to the pool, gymnastics, birthday parties or places where there are lots of other kids.

I used to feel really guilty about having someone to help, (and sometimes still do) but it is honestly a HUGE blessing for our family. I am well aware that there are families larger than ours without the luxury, but with no family in town, a Daddy that works 80+ hours every week and a Mommy who has been called to serve in a couple of ministerial roles outside the home, it works for us.

She is a Senior in Early Childhood education, so she loves seeing them learn almost as much as their Daddy & I do. The children adore her and so do I. She is responsible, loving and hard working. I truly try to schedule my time out of the home for times when the children are sleeping whenever possible. Knowing Annie is around enables me to run errands and "do" ministry outside the home with peace of mind. It is also nice to have a sitter who knows the drill when we are afforded the opportunity for a date night!

I have searched my heart on this and do NOT feel they are being deprived by our arrangement. I am reminded of this post by Jeana about how quickly we judge other people's parenting decisions.

16 comments:

Perri said...

Judgmental - no.
Jealous........mmmm, maybe.

Enjoy it!

Renee said...

Definitely jealous! But definitely glad you have that help! I have a college girl that helps out once in a while so I can reclaim my sanity out by myself, and she's been known to go on outings too, like to the shoe store because, can't you just imagine me taking 4 boys by myself to try Sunday shoes on them? No thanks. I'm glad we know our limits!

GreenGenes said...

I was just reading your post for today when I saw you had left a comment. When my twins were little, I had a college girl come in twice a week for 3-4 hours so that I could take a nap, run errands, exercise, or whatever. I think hiring an extra set of hands for a few hours a week is nothing to feel bad about. Be thankful you can afford it--it's a blessing!
I don't know if I could have made it without my help! I had no family whatsoever nearby!

HW said...

Of course your kids are not being deprived. You have just placed one more person into their lives who adores them. What could be better than that?

Belle-ah said...

Why on earth would anyone judge you in a negative light? It sounds as if "Annie" is a blessing to you all and I am sure your children are stimulated by being able to play with a new face for a little bit. I have had help through out the years and sent each of my little ones to preschool for 2,3,4 building up to 5 mornings a week...They loved it and I enjoyed the time as well. That isn't for everyone but it is what has worked for us. Your family is lovely and as long as they are thriving all is well. (((hugs))) Mommy guilt isn't worth the energy it saps from our lives.

I know this will sound hokie but I thought of this blog today as I walked behind a Daddy as he walked is triplets into the mall.

Teresa said...

That sounds like a GREAT arrangement. I think it's very smart to have an extra set of hands around you just for you to keep your SANITY. You'd go nuts if you didn't have a small "adult" break every once in a while.

Wendy said...

I think that sounds like a great arrangement, especially since your husband works so many hours. We all need a little time to ourselves too, so we can be better moms (in my opinion) and it seems like this would help with that.

JenMom said...

You all are so wonderful. I was shocked when I saw how many comments this had already generated. I suppose I ended on a note that sounded a little defensive...It is just the Mommy guilt--and the fact that there are women who do this alone. On some levels (ahem..pride) I'd love to be superwoman...but life is much better for everyone around me when I recognize my limitations. I never ever want to be misunderstood as someone who is not FULLY AWARE of the blessing it is to be able to have help when I need it.
Renee, LOL, I cannot believe I forgot to mention the shoe store!!!
Thank you all for the encouragement.

Jeana said...

Wow, your kids are gorgeous!

keri said...

sounds wonderful to me. i'm so glad you have the help that you need! and it sounds like annie is the perfect match for your fam! she must go to berry since she is so cool. ha. :)

Jenny in Queensland said...

It is so hard to find balance with the whole mommy-guilt feelings. We too were blessed to have a supernanny, Lisa. Lisa has become part of our family, she even came to the birth of our third child. If you and the triplets are happy, that is all that counts.

Renee said...

I wish we could find an "Annie the Nanny" here! We used to have a Collette, she was wonderful with the kids, but she flaked on us this summer. We are pretty much at a loss these days! Could you send Annie our way whenever you don't need her?

Paulette said...

Oh my word Jenmom, I admire you greatly for taking the time you need to do outside activities without the children. It is a wonderful thing. You do not have to justify that for even a second.
I do not even know you and through this blog I would nominate you as the mother of the year in a heart beat!!!
Having your nanny allows you to replentish and show your children that you are involved in the Lord's work as well. How else will they learn that if they do not see that in you?
Also it makes you a better mommy to them when you have a break.
I think it is wonderful, alittle jealous, I wish I were the Nanny!!!!
How wonderful for all of you!!

Alison said...

I htink you are smart to have Annie. I also agree with Paulette. You are showing your kids that the Lords work is very important and that it needs time as well. My guess is that Annie will be a very special person in the kids lives for many years to come.

Kate said...

That is awesome. The best advice I got as a first time mom was "know your limits and stick to 'em." I live by that and give that advice too (when asked)!

renovating this heart said...

Just know that (guaranteed) your kids bless the nanny's life as well!! I babysit part-time for two sets of twins to help their moms get away for a bit periodically and am so THANKFUL for having these families in my life. So not only are you blessing yourself with time to rejuvenate, but you're allowing someone else to love your kids and find JOY in them. How cool is that?!

I just posted something the other day about the twin boys I watch... and then there's a post further down about the twin girls. Hopefully they'll help you realize what a blessing your kids are to someone else too!