Tuesday, January 08, 2008

How Do I Start One Of These??

And who do I talk to about getting it started!!

Have you ever heard of a baby sitting co-op? I found this on another blog--and it seems that a ward/congregation/neighborhood out west has one going. Here's what one of the women said...

My ward has the greatest babysitting co-op that I am part of. Eleven moms participate and each of us sign up for one 3 hour shift during the week. For example, my shift is Tuesday from 3:00-6:00pm, and the other available shifts are mornings 9:00am-12:00pm and afternoons 12:00pm-3:00pm each day. So when I need a babysitter for a doctor's appointment, there is literally NO pressure. I just look at the schedule for who has that shift, give them a call to let them know I'll be dropping my girls off, and I'm set. Here's the genius of the whole plan - you pay for your babysitting with tickets which come in 1 hour and 1/2 hour varieties. It costs one ticket per child per hour you are away. So when I have a 2 hour OB appointment, I pay 4 tickets for my two girls. When I joined the group, I was given 18 tickets to start with, and then I earn more as I watch during my shift. Sometimes members of the group also volunteer to watch for 3-4 hours Friday night or Saturday morning, just to earn extra tickets and to give members of the group a chance for a date night or Saturday morning errands or temple trip.

It has been such a great thing for me to step into, especially with being pregnant and not knowing very many people. I've had a chance to get to know more people more quickly and also have childcare that I trust. Also, these women are the happiest, most willing bunch of babysitters I've ever dealt with because they've already set the time aside for watching, and they are earning tickets each time someone needs them to babysit.

Is that not awesome? In 10 years of marriage--I have never hired a babysitter! I find that both sad and tragic. Most of the problem deals with the fact that I'm far to shy to actually meet any babysitting age girl--I don't know how much to pay--and honestly--I'm just at a loss of how the entire thing works! I normally end up calling my in laws--but dropping all four off with them could amount to 'Senior Citizen Abuse' and I may be charged literally! I'm way too new in this area to know anyone here either---so I'm probably a lost cause--which is too bad--but not really. In just a few short years, we can leave all the kids home and pay Jake to babysit!

Yeah--like that would ever happen!


Lynne said...

Our daughter is 11 and we've NEVER had a babysitter! While we were living in Illinois, we would call parents of her friends if we needed her to be watched for some reason and we would reciprocate. Now that we've moved, we are stuck. We missed my husband's company Christmas party because I don't have a clue who to call and am not yet comfortable enough with the two friends she now has. I really miss being in an area where we were familiar.

kelly said...

In my ward, we started a neighborhood playgroup with a bunch of moms. We all took turns on the same day and time each week and let the kids play. I was the first Tuesday of the month and then each of the Tuesdays that playgroup was not at my house, It was just 3 hours of ME time. I went shopping. I took naps. I read books, I had lunch with friends. Whatever my little heart desired. It was awesome.
And, if I needed to go get a haircut or whatever, I just made my appointment on that day.
Someone in Relief Society just suggested it and every mom that was there jumped at the chance.
Maybe you could be the suggester?