Wednesday, June 20, 2012

In Celebration of Mothers - Nancy Parker of

Make-up sales girl or nanny?

Today's guest post is a little different in that it doesn't give any anecdotes about mothers or motherhood.  Instead, it offers advice that can help make Mom's life a little easier: how to choose a nanny.  Whether you work from home, outside the home, or are a full-time stay-at-home mom, finding a reliable person to help provide a bit of respite in your childcare routine can prove invaluable.  Nancy Parker is a former nanny who took her expertise and created the website,, an on-line resource that helps to safely match busy families with full-time, part-time, or live-in nannies.  In addition to the 9,000-plus nanny profiles they have on file, eNannysource also offers a "Nanny Success Kit', a step-by-step guide to help parents interview and screen applicants, as well as "Ask the Nanny Doctor", a resource that answers all your parenting questions from newborn care to creating healthy relationships with your kids and your nanny.  Nancy enjoys writing about a variety of subjects such as health and wellness, parenting, childcare, babysitting, and, of course, tips on how to choose a nanny.  She can be reached at  I hope you find her insight informative and useful!

As the economy continues to be in limbo it’s becoming more common for families to have either both parents working or to be single-parent households. For this reason, finding quality childcare for your kids becomes a rising concern. Hiring a nanny can offer you peace of mind and your children personalized care, among many other benefits. But how do you choose the right nanny for your family? There are several measures you can take to work toward picking the right nanny for your family:

  1.     Talk to your family about what you want from your nanny – Before you start interviewing any candidates, talk to the entire family about what expectations everyone has from the nanny. Do you want someone who is going to be more hands-off or hands-on in her approach to raising your children? What sort of tasks and responsibilities will the nanny have? Evaluating your family’s needs ahead of time will help you weed out the nannies that won’t fit into that criterion so that you can focus on the ones that will.

  2.     Let your kids interact with the potential nanny – After you’ve asked the basic interview questions and satisfied your own questions from the nanny, let the nanny play with the kids for a little while. Part of being a good nanny is being able to identify with and interact with the kids. If your nanny isn’t comfortable around your kids in an interview, how can you expect her to be comfortable with them outside of the interview? In the same light, it’s a great chance for the nanny to see if she’s compatible with the kids and to showcase her skills. I love getting a chance to play with the kids for a few minutes while the parents are around because it lets me convey my passion for being a nanny in a way that the basic interview questions can’t always capture.

  3.     Ask the nanny what her views are on childcare and share yours – Everyone has different views on what the role of a nanny should be, and it’s important to hire someone whose views on childcare line up with yours as closely as possible. After all, you don’t want to hire someone who has differing views on childcare, discipline, nutrition etc. that could end up sending your child mixed signals and teach them conflicting values. Likewise, your nanny needs to be comfortable rearing your child in the same way you do, and discussing these things ahead of time gives her a chance to essentially interview the family ahead of time as well.

As a mom it can be hard to let go of the protectiveness over your children and embrace letting someone come into your home and take over as the childcare provider each day. However, finding a nanny who is compatible with your family has the potential to do so much more than just provide childcare for your kids: nannies have the ability to become your number one helper and an integral part of your family as time passes.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Lynn! I thought Nancy's tips were very informative.