31 May 2011

Personality Test: Learning About Nanny, Learning About Me

A few months ago I was asked to review a new online personality assessment system parents could use when screening potential nanny candidates. The experience taught me more about myself as a blogger than anything else.

TakeCare offers an online psychological assessment tailored for caregivers such as nannies, au pairs and babysitters. Its a series of True/False questions that determines your perception of right/wrong, theft, lying and more. I'd been asked to complete similar assessments when I was interviewing for jobs. I thought they really helped my future bosses understand me, so I agreed. These assessments could be valuable for anyone hiring for an in-home, child-related role: tutors, music teachers etc.

Anyway, I settled in front of the laptop, logged into the test and quickly realized...this won't work for me, or anyone like me who's hiring an ESL nanny. Gulp.

16 May 2011

Does this seem like a good idea?

Came across a blog post today about poor treatment of live in caregivers. I've touched on this a few times because I think its really really crappy. But, the thing that gets me the most? Even if you are the type of horrible person who thinks that a foreign worker doesn't deserve a decent wage, isn't the well being of your kid worth more?

Here's the blog post: A Snapshot of the Vulnerable Underclass of Foreign Workers in Canada

05 May 2011

Nanny Birthday Gift #FAIL

Dear A's birthday is coming up and as a gift, we rented her cabin for the weekend. Seemed like a good gift, big group outing etc. But then the gift fell apart and I was reminded of another aspect of life as a new immigrant, like my Dear A. Turns out their ride to the cabin fell through because the driver (and sole car owner in their group of friends) was promoted to shift supervisor and too worried to re-ask for the weekend off.

At first I was annoyed, but then I remembered my own days of scouring the "ride board" at university, hoping to bum a ride to go see friends or family. Or, my first few years of work when I wasn't sure if I could ask for all that vacation.... You forget how hard it is to run off for a weekend when you don't have a car, 4 weeks vacation a year, easy access to cash and all that.

I do still think the weekend away is a good gift, but I think next time I'll either do a gift certificate and cash to cover additional expenses, or maybe just cash. In the meantime... I may have a weekend at a cabin up for grabs.

04 May 2011

Hump Day Distraction - Real, Live, Human Style

I wasn't planning to post a Hump Day Distraction today but through the lovely coincidences that make up our online world, I came across a terrific blog this morning.
Jenny Hamilton Style is written by a lawyer-mom-fashionista. She shares style tips, product tips etc. My favorite thing is that she's the model, so you see the styles on a real human as opposed to this freak of nature.

As you know, I'm 3 months post baby, and while I'm proud of myself for getting back on the treadmill etc, I'm a real human and seeing all those celeb post baby just pisses me off. I'd rather get real advice from real people.

Anyway, I've added her to my blogroll and suggest you check her out. Its also a great way to inspire a spring closet clean if you're up for it!

02 May 2011

Nannies, Playgroups & Preschools Oh My!

K is now 3 and a half. (Suppressing my TIME-IS-FLYING-BY!! panic for now. ) He knows the English alphabet, his numbers to 20, is potty-trained, reasonably polite, and able to communicate his needs. He even has a few friends that he plays with (well, next to, but the playing with is coming along.)

So, does he need to go to preschool? That's what I was wondering all of last month. As all moms do in this day and age, I took to Twitter & Facebook for advice. I realized it must be a hot topic, as I got 14 comments in 1 day.

Most of the parents with kids in daycare or dayhomes said "No." Parents with nannies and parents who were at home with their kids recommended some sort of out of house experience.

Every response fell into one of these categories, which made me realize they probably apply to all parents considering the next step in their childcare plan:
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