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I have only had Marsi with 1 paid non-family babysitter for about 3 hours so I could get a pedicure with my Mom and she was a 17 year old family friend... When DH and I were both working every once in a while, my inlaws would take her for free during the day. They would also take her every once in a while so DH could have a date. We have never been away from her overnight. She has always had me or DH to put her to bed.
I am still not comfortable just looking for a babysitter. I have to know the person in my personal life in order to leave my child with them. They have to be over the age of 16 and have a CPR certification. Preferably a girl. I think I will get into my church here and do babysitting swaps where a family takes my kids and then I take their kids every once in a while. I need to find someone to watch Marsi for my appointment on Monday since I am having an t/v ultrasound. I might just have to strap her into a stroller in the office though.
How do you feel about babysitters? They are necessary sometimes for many families but we have not needed on yet.
Who would you allow to babysit? We have my parents in the neighborhood and they watch M quite a bit, I have mom friends who I would also happily leave M with for short periods. I basically trust family and close friends.
Have you left baby with a babysitter yet? If not, what's the earliest you would? No. I don't have some specific age. I just go with what makes sense and is needed at the time. I am a SAHM and with grandparents a few minutes away, it hasn't been needed. M is going to start preschool 2 mornings a week in a couple months, though, if that counts! It is a wonderful little Waldorf preschool right around the corner I think it will be great for her and I will need the time, esp when baby brother arrives.
How do you feel about babysitters? I was a babysitter/nanny so I don't have any issue with them
Who would you allow to babysit? We would allow family or friends or a hired caretaker to babysit. Unfortunately our family all lives out of state and we really don't have any close friends here. A babysitter would be a stretch for us financially.
Have you left baby with a babysitter yet? If not, what's the earliest you would? We just left Eleanor with my mom last week for our NT scan, and that was the first time we left her with anyone (but only because of the issues above). I would really like to get an occasional babysitter that we really trust for Eleanor to get to play independent of us, for us to get a break, and for us to have a plan if there was something urgent that came up.