Now that I’m a nanny who is spending all summer with two little boys, I understand the real reason summer camps were invented. I use to think it was for parents who worked full-time and who can’t watch their kids when they’re on summer break from school. But now I know the real reason: So stay-at-home parents and child care providers won’t be bored out of their skulls all summer.
Last summer I filled mine and BB’s schedule with activities ranging from soccer, mommy and me classes and trips to all the indoor museums in Miami. With an almost toddler in tow this summer, we’ve had to improvise. Its hard to find summer classes that cater to both a toddler and a baby, so mostly we are left to entertain ourselves. But this nanny is armed with a plan: take the Bears all over Miami and charge it to the parents.
Sometimes I forget how bizarre my job is. I’m paid to watch children who aren’t mine and to entertain them using money that also isn’t mine. My first few weeks working for the Bears, I asked the mom what my spending limit was when I took BB out for the day. Her response? No limit. Must be nice, amiright? She just asked me to bring home the receipts so she could reimburse me at the end of each week. So my days, especially during the summer, are usually filled with taking the boy out for a few hours and wearing them out, and coming home and putting the receipts for the days’ adventures on the family’s communal bulletin board.
With Miami as our oyster and the possibilities endless, my favorite place to take the Bears might be surprising: the public library.
Besides the fact that I believe I am solely keeping the Miami-Dade Public Library System afloat with my constant late fees, its free, indoors and walking distance from the house. But most importantly, it’s air-conditioned.
Summers in Miami… don’t experience one if you don’t have to. I’ve moved our morning walk from 10 am to 8:30 am, and it doesn’t make a difference. It will already hotter than Hades and will be the same hot, humid temperature throughout the day.
Today I suggested taking the Bears to the zoo. Grandma Bear wasn’t too excited. She was worried it would be too hot (the forecast said it was only going to be 91 degrees today!) and that she was worried about the sun. I’m a firm believer in sunscreen, for ALL ages, and I assured her that I never leave the house without hats for all of us. The real reason I wanted to get out of the house is that it’s the day of the week in which my arch nemesis comes to the Bear house.
On Tuesdays, the housekeeper (who thought I left LB in the car after Gymboree last week, because she didn’t see him sleeping beside me on the patio,) comes to the house to move things around and pretend to clean. She affectionately uses this time to make her daily phone calls to what appears to be every single member of her family. I’ve never seen that woman not talk on the phone for longer than 30 minutes, but her mopping and phone-talking skills are quite impressive.
I’ve learned that when she’s over, its best to leave the house. Otherwise, she lingers in doorways and eavesdrops on my conversation with the Bears. Think I’m paranoid? She’s been known to swoop in and argue with me when she doesn’t agree with something I’ve said and even has gone so far as to tell Mama and Papa Bear about something I’ve done that she doesn’t approve.
Mama and Papa Bear always tell me to ignore what she says, but I find it best to remove myself from her presence entirely. Today the gang and I went to the zoo (with dad along for the adventure) and I didn’t see her all day. We came home to a (semi) clean house and two sleepy Bears. Sounds like a win-win to me! I plan to keep up this routine all summer.
I’m not sure why I titled this blog “Summertime Sadness.” Maybe because I just love the Lana Del Ray song? This summer hasn’t been sad, (minus BB’s stay at the children’s hospital) it’s been filled with lots of adventures. Adventures that keep two Bears from getting bored and a nanny from constantly checking her watch.
It’s only 8:30 and this nanny is in bed pooped. My Fitbit says we walked over three miles at the zoo. BB starts Pre-k 3 in a month, but I’m convinced that the days will continue to fly. Fingers crossed!