Child care. Figuring out who will care for our kid(s) when we’re away is one of the most important decisions we have to make as parents. However, the process of finding exceptional care feels overwhelming and time-consuming. We’re left feeling less concerned about how the time is spent while we’re gone and more focused on filling the timeslot.

But what if you could get more out of your child care while you’re not home? It’s possible and doesn’t require much extra work. All you have to do is figure out what you need from your sitter (hint: it’s usually more than just keeping your kid(s) safe). Here are three easy ways to find the right child care provider for your situation—while making day-to-day life easier for you in the process.

Find your family's next great sitter. Post a job. CTAFind your family's next great sitter. Post a job. CTA

1. Exchanging Energy

You pour your heart (and time) into being the best parent you can be. Unfortunately, by the end of the day, there isn’t much energy left. So, if you’re going to hire a sitter why not look for someone that can fill in the energy gaps? For example, maybe you know you should be getting home from work and playing outside with your kid(s). But by the time you make dinner and take half of a breath your energy is simply depleted. When searching for a child care solution that can serve you and your kid(s) in more ways than one, look for a sitter that loves to be active and get outside.

It’s all about the exchange of energy. Your kid(s) will have the opportunity to release that pent-up energy. Your time spent at home can be spent reenergizing instead of playing hopscotch with tired eyes. And your sitter will feel vibrant being active, hanging outdoors, and doing something they love. The best part? You can stop feeling guilty about not playing outside with your kid(s).

2. Crafting Connections

Let’s say your child has recently become interested in science. That’s awesome, right? Absolutely, but you have more of a creative mind, and math and science have never come easy to you. Why not leverage your child care situation and find a sitter that loves science. When you can identify what your kid(s) need that you’re not equipped to give them, find someone who is. And why not get some errands done in the process?

Imagine your child eagerly awaiting the arrival of someone they look up to and can learn from. You leave and your home is filled with smiles, passion, and knowledge exchange. And you don’t have to deal with the volcano experiment going awry on your watch. Meanwhile, your child gets to work on something they love and keeps them engaged with a caretaker they admire. Wala! You just crafted a perfect connection.

Families are looking for you. Apply to jobs. CTAFamilies are looking for you. Apply to jobs. CTA

3. Check Off the To-Do List

Homework. Dinner. Clean up. Bath. These are all chores that need to be taken care of nearly every evening. What if you didn’t have to be the one to do them? If you require child care in the evening ask your sitter for support in getting your kid(s) through their nightly routine. When you get home your time can be spent focused on hanging out with them, lots of snuggles, and a bedtime story.

If you have a little one that naps, ask your sitter to take care of a few minor chores that are related to the care of your child. Picking up toys, cleaning bottles, or putting in a load of laundry are ideas. Every situation—and therefore everyone’s to-do list—is unique so think of your own chores that are done on repeat. Could your child care provider help with any of these?

Of course, you and the sitter will have to come to an agreement about their rate with the specific tasks you have in mind. Each may have their own definition about what’s included in child care and what’s an additional charge. The key is to be upfront about your expectations and needs so the sitter knows that certain chores are part of the job.

 

When looking for child care you need more than just a sitter to hold down the fort. Take a few minutes to figure out how your child care provider can assist you in being a great parent. Start by posting your sitter job with more clarity about what you need and quickly find the right match.

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