The purpose of this role is to provide 24/7 care to your children, which will cover all aspects of physical, mental, emotional, social and cognitive development. This particular role requires high levels of flexibility, patience and quick-thinking.
Key duties associated with this role:
- Deal with all nutritional requirements for your children, to include meal planning, shopping and food preparation. May also serve in the role of dietitian and deal with difficult children’s particular meal requests e.g. I don’t like carrots anymore.
- Undertake all laundry to be completed in the household. Washing and drying essential, ironing not required.
- Have a responsibility for the personal care of your children to include, dressing, washing, changing of nappies/potty training, nail and hair care.
- To implement a comprehensive physical education programme on a daily basis compromising activities directed towards “wearing them out”.
- Develop a social skills programme to ensure the children becoming functioning members of society and abstain from biting, hitting or pushing other members of toddler groups.
- Deal with all emotional requirements for hugs, kisses and requests to be carried. Must also be capable of dealing with emotional meltdowns and tantrums, most often occurring in public places when you bump into a friend of your mothers.
- Implement an extensive educational programme that goes beyond turning on Dora the Explorer and telling yourself they are learning Spanish. This programme should include badly constructed crafts, and lots of time spent on the floor doing jigsaws/colouring/playing house and extends to singing nursery rhymes in the car and bedtime stories.
Criteria for Applicants:
- All applications should have given birth to, sired, adopted or fostered a child/children.
- A dynamic working environment. Never-ending entertainment and total devotion (n.b. not always evident but always present)
- Ongoing opportunities for learning and development
- The opportunity to employ a part time co-worker of your choice.
- The lucky position of watching your child/children grow and develop on a daily basis.
*Full nights sleep, hot cups of coffee/tea, using the toilet alone and showering daily are not guaranteed.
This is how lie in’s happen at our house.
Daddy has a lie in, gets up, makes a cup of coffee, sits down and drinks it.
Mammy has a lie in, gets up, goes to the girls room, rounds up laundry, puts on a wash, takes out bins, boils kettle, empties dishwasher, stacks dirty plates into dishwasher, cleans breakfast things away, wipes down table and highchair, sweeps floor, tidies toys in playroom, intervenes in toddler dispute, reboils kettle, kisses heads, plays spin the toddler, makes coffee, attempts to drink coffee with two toddlers yelling “peep!” from behind chair, abandons coffee, rounds up toddlers to go play in playroom.
I was at a group recently where we were asked to consider whether we follow our intuition with our babies or look for outside information. After reflecting on it I started to think that the biggest problem that people in our generation have is having our babies without the village. You know the old saying “it takes a village to raise a baby”, well these days having a village isn’t always possible.
In the village you would be surrounded by babies, baby brothers and sisters, baby cousins. You would be absorbing by watching and responding to babies how your elders were parenting. You would probably go from having your younger siblings and cousins on your hip to having your own in a relatively short space of time. When you had your own you would be surrounded by willing help from grandmothers and aunts and sisters and cousins. You would never really have to stop and reflect on your parenting style.
I come from a large family. My youngest brother was born when I was 14 so I still remember changing nappies and rocking him to sleep (he is over 6 foot now!) I babysat frequently. Babies didn’t phase me in the slightest.
Then I had my first baby. I was living in Dublin away from my family, my village. I was thirty. So all the baby experience that I had seemed really long ago. I hadn’t held a baby apart from the odd friends child in over ten years. Most of my friends weren’t anywhere near having babies. I had no nieces or nephews. And I found it overwhelming.
I was alone in the house when my husband went back to work with this tiny baby and the responsibility was all mine. Suddenly intuition went out the window and I longed for a “complete idiots guide to babies”. I started to research how to look after my own baby, I googled everything.
And here is the problem with outside information; it is all conflicting. Your baby should be in its own room from day one versus co-sleeping. Feeding on demand versus routine feeding. Spoon feeding versus baby led weaning. You need to fit your baby around your life versus you need to fit your life around your baby. Whatever I was doing was not right by somebody’s standards. Cue, Mammy Guilt. Is your baby doing tummy time? Is your baby being stimulated enough? Are you reading to your one month old??
On my second baby I didn’t want to fall into that trap again and finally I gave in to my intuition. We moved closer to our village. I didn’t worry about her hitting milestones. I started her on solids when it felt right. I moved her into her own room when it felt right. I had gained the confidence and experience to allow myself to parent her as I wanted to. I relaxed.
And occasionally I googled.