Leaving your kids with a babysitter for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience. Will this person treat your kids like the angels they are, or will they just eat your cookies and and watch your porn? One thing you can do to ease your mind is to write out a list of instructions so that your babysitter knows exactly how to care for your child. The amount of detail that goes into these instructions, however, changes as your child gets older and you start to care less and less.
Here are some examples:
With a baby:
Clamshell has her last bottle at 8pm. I have frozen breast milk in the freezer that should be warmed slowly over the stove top and stirred constantly. Make sure you use the bottle with the orange lid and not the yellow lid because she loves orange. I have found it easiest to feed her while sitting on the glider in her nursery with the lights dimmed and the Rockabye Baby Radiohead CD playing softly. Burp her gently, please.
With a first-grader:
(via jeansandjellies tumblr)
If you know how to use a stove and feel like doing a whole dinner thing, there's mac and cheese in the cabinet to the right. Boom. We've also got some frozen pizzas and stuff, I think. Feel free to look around.
But if you don't want to worry about it, then just let her snack on whatever she wants. Ice cream, popcorn, ice cream with popcorn, whatever. Go crazy and be the best babysitter ever.
2. Play time.
We have some educational toys for Taproot in the playroom. Please use them. Stacking blocks will help with his gross motor skills, and we like to get him in the baby gym for at least ten minutes every evening. Please note that we have strict rules about screen time: Taproot is not to have have access to any TV, iPhone, or iPads. We believe strongly that screen time is bad for children and stunts their growth.
With a first grader:
We've got Finding Nemo, The Croods, Toy Store, The Incredibles...any movie you want. They are stacked next to the DVD player. Feel free to turn on Nick Jr too (it's channel 120) and let Burlap and Chiffon relax for a while. Put your feet up. Enjoy yourselves.
5. Bath time.
Bath time is at 7pm. We have a digital bath thermometer that we would like you to use to make sure that the water is a comfortably warm 75-degrees. We make our own baby soap, so please use the soap in the bottle marked "Lavender Essence Soap." (It's not as complicated as it sounds, it's just some castille soap, aloe vera, guar gum, that kind of thing.) After Siltstone has been washed throughly, please dry him gently using his duckie towel.
Just make sure Antelope doesn't burn herself. And for the love of God, please remind her not to drink the bath water. It's been a problem.
You'll be starting this with Shishapangma's (that's the mountain in China where his father and I met) last bottle, so please review that process above (#1). After he has been burped, please put him into his pajamas that have a giraffe on a skateboard. We don't use any kind of sleepsacks because we do not believe in restraining our child while he sleeps. Just lay him down in his crib and talk to him quietly for a while. Tell him a story, or talk to him about current events until he goes to sleep. Please remain seated outside his bedroom door for the rest of the night in case he needs anything.
Ha. Good luck!