Live in Vs Live out nannies? making the decision…

extracted from –


It is important that you are comfortable with the option you choose. The following are some of the more (or less) common pros and cons for each arrangement:

Advantages of Live-in care:

The live in nanny offers the family many advantages. A live in nanny will reside in your home, generally in a private bedroom, and will receive room and board in addition to her salary. The Live in nanny is never late for work due to car trouble, weather, or just plain traffic. Live in nannies adapt to the rhythm of the nanny-family more quickly than the come and go nanny as a result of increased familiarity.

Live-in caregivers often provide families with greater flexibility since the nanny lives with the family and the parents don’t, for example, need to rush home to get dinner for their family. The family will have a wonderful opportunity to get to know the nanny better and sooner than if the nanny arrives at the home each morning as parents are leaving and leaves the home each evening as parents are arriving. Through this increased interaction from the very beginning, the family will become more familiar and at ease with the nanny and this will translate to less anxiety for parents (and the children) when parents leave the house each day. A live-in caregiver is generally more available to address last minute scheduling issues, as they do not have their own family waiting for them at home in the evening or early mornings. (Remember, even if the live in nanny is available for overtime, the family must compensate her for the additional hours worked.) Parents who require 24/7 coverage at times due to work travel find that a live in nanny can better accomodate this occasional need. There is some anecdotal evidence that the retention rate of a live-in nanny is better than their live-out counterparts.

Disadvantages of Live-in care:

Families must be prepared to provide separate private sleeping quarters at a minimum and in most situations, access to a vehicle on a fairly regular basis. While the majority of live-in nannies do not have their own vehicle, live-out caregivers usually have their own transportation – public or their own vehicle. Also be prepared to address the logistics and dynamics (privacy being just one consideration) of adding an additional adult into the household.

The live in nanny will generally expect a private, furnished bedroom and would prefer a private bath. Some live in nannies will agree to share a bath with the small children, but rarely with the other adults in the household. A live in nanny will often eat with the family, and providing meals for the live in nanny is part of the overall employment package. Many families offer to allow the live in nanny to add certain items to the family grocery list – her favorite yogurt or soda pop for example.

Families hiring live-in caregivers are often surprised at how little ‘value’ is assigned to the living arrangements in the nanny’s compensation. A live in nanny salary is between 10 – 15% below that of a similarly qualified live out nanny. The majority of live-in nannies are younger, less experienced caregivers. As their earning potential increases, many of them aspire to live out. Why? Many live-in nannies prefer the privacy of their own accomodations, and fear being at the family’s beck-and-call 24/7. Living where you work, and living with the boss has some obvious down sides from the employee perspective.

Families hiring a live-in caregiver who is relocating to their area must be prepared to provide the nanny with contacts/ideas for making new friendships and social connections. These issues should be discussed as part of the interview process; home-sick nannies are unhappy nannies and the relationship inevitably degrades if this important issue cannot be overcome.

Advantages of Live Out (Come and Go) care

Obvious advantages include the fact that another adult is not added to the household; there is no need to allocate space to the nanny. The nanny – parent personality mesh is less important, and the employer – employee dynamics are more traditional (remembering that personalities and emotions will always have a role in nanny relationships because children are involved). The live out nanny will often already be familiar with and have ties within the community.

Some live out nannies commute via their private vehicle. Families will often ask the live out nanny to run errands or provide transportation to/from preschool and other activities using the nanny’s car. Don’t be surprised if nanny refuses! When the nanny agrees, be prepared to address the insurance issues (her rates will increase to get coverages to protect her and your children in the event of an accident during work hours) and provide adequate compensation for fuel, depreciation and maintenance. Most nannies who agree to use their vehicle will expect per mile compensation at the IRS’ prevailing rate ($0.505 for 2008).

Disadvantages of Live Out care:

There is less flexibility in hours and schedules with live out employees. The live out nanny often has a family of her own that she returns to each evening, often her own children who require help with homework, transportation to activities, etc. The live out nanny will expect to arrive for work at a set hour and be relieved according to schedule. There may be transportation issues, particularly during inclement weather. Punctuality may be an issue, often a factor of commuting distances and traffic/transit issues. Live-out caregivers are typically somewhat better

What to do when your toddler won’t eat – good advice for nannies.

extracted from –

How much should my child eat?

How much your child eats may be very different from how much another child eats. Don’t worry if it seems that your child doesn’t eat enough at one meal. Children often make up for a small meal or a missed meal at the next mealtime.

If your child has plenty of energy and is growing, he or she is most likely healthy. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about how your child is growing or if you are concerned that picky eating is slowing your child’s growth.

What if my child is a picky eater?

Many toddlers are picky eaters. Being picky about food is a normal behavior for many toddlers. There may be times when your child wants to eat a particular food again and again for a while, and then not want to eat it at all. Offer your child a variety of nutritious foods and let him or her choose what to eat. You may want to serve something you know your child likes along with another new nutritious food. But try to let your child explore new foods on his or her own. Don’t force your child to taste new foods. You may need to offer a new food several times before your child tries it.

You may need to be flexible with the meals you prepare to make sure your child gets a balanced diet. For example, if you’re making beef stew for dinner and your child will only eat potatoes and carrots, you may need to cook some of these vegetables separate from the stew so that your child will eat them.

You may want to make a list of foods that you know your child likes so you can make sure he or she eats a balanced diet. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Web site,, offers good information about nutrition for children and adults.

Setting a good example for your child can also help. If your child sees you eating a variety of healthy foods, he or she will be more likely to give them a try.

How can I make sure my child is getting enough to eat?

Offer your child food that is tasty and looks good, and offer the right amount. A good rule of thumb is to offer 1 tablespoon of each kind of food for each year of your child’s age. If your child is still hungry, you can serve more. Don’t force your child to clean his or her plate. Once he or she is no longer hungry, your child should be allowed to stop eating.

Try not to bribe your child to eat (such as offering dessert as a reward). Threats or punishments aren’t good ideas, either. If your child doesn’t want to eat, accept his or her refusal. Even though you may be concerned, don’t show your child that you are upset by this refusal to eat. If your child is seeking attention, your disapproval fills that need, and he or she may try to gain your attention in the same way another time.

What about snacks?

Your child should have 3 meals and 2 snacks a day. Toddlers usually don’t eat enough in one meal to remain full until the next mealtime. Offer your child small, healthy snacks in between meals. Some examples of healthy snacks include low-fat string cheese, yogurt cups, apple slices or strawberry halves, slices of lean turkey or whole-grain crackers with peanut butter.

Try not to offer your child snacks close to mealtimes. If the next meal is several hours away, it’s okay to serve a snack. If the meal is in the next hour, avoid offering your child a snack. If your child comes to the table hungry, he or she is more likely to eat the meal.

If your child doesn’t eat at one mealtime, you can offer a nutritious snack a few hours later. If your child doesn’t eat the snack, offer food again at the next mealtime. A child will usually eat at the second meal. With this approach, you can be sure that your child won’t go hungry for too long or have other problems associated with a poor diet.

How can I make mealtimes easier?

You may want to try the following suggestions to make mealtimes easier and more enjoyable:

  • Give your child a heads up. Ten to 15 minutes before mealtime, tell your child that it will be time to eat soon. Children may be so tired or excited from play activities that they don’t feel like eating. Letting your child know that it is almost time for a meal will give him or her a chance to settle down before eating.
  • Establish a routine. Children are more comfortable with routines and predictability, so set regular mealtimes, have people use the same seats at the table or create a tradition to have each person talk about something fun or interesting that happened to them during the day.
  • Reserve mealtimes for eating and for spending quality time with your family. Don’t let your child play with toys during mealtimes. Reading books or watching television shouldn’t be allowed during mealtimes either. Explain to your child how good it is to eat together and ask him or her to stay at the table until everyone has eaten.
  • Make mealtimes pleasant. If mealtimes are pleasant, there is a good chance that your child will begin to look forward to eating with other family members. Try to avoid arguments during mealtime.
  • Manage your expectations. Don’t expect manners that are too difficult for your child. For example, don’t expect a child who is 3 years old to eat with the proper utensil. For many children, a spoon is much easier to handle than a fork.

Written by editorial staff