As I sit here typing, my four-year-old and one-year-old are in the other room playing nicely together, sharing toys and building a town out of Duplo blocks. I haven’t gotten my butt out of this overstuffed chair in over 15 minutes and the music of my choice is playing in the background (I’m on a Brett Dennan kick, if you must know).
I pay for this time every Monday afternoon. You see, I have the world’s best babysitter. Her sister babysat for No1 before heading off to college, passing the babysitting legacy to J. They are both great neighborhood kids from an amazing family, and they are all mine (I may share their number with you for a small finders’ fee and a signed non-compete clause). J has known No1 from the time she was 9 months old and is one of the only people outside of the family that No2 is comfortable around. She has this playful yet stern nature and has wisdom befitting someone much older than her 13 years. And she LOVES my kids. I’m pretty sure she would come over and play with them even if I didn’t pay her.
When J was unable to babysit on piano lesson days, I was initially reluctant to shell out $10 an hour on a different day for “no good reason.” But it’s turned out to be one of the highlights of my week. I get time to write, or cook, or do something for myself, and the kids get time with someone much better at playing pretend than I am.
It always feels like money well-spent.