Tuesday, April 26, 2011

How You Can Get Free Babysitting - No Relatives Required!

The balance of life. You want to go out and have fun, the kids need you at home. You are pulled in two directions at once. And then there's the cost. A night out for a simple dinner and movie can easily run into triple digits. Don't forget the babysitter! Who can even organize all that?

While I can't help at all with the cost of dinner and a movie, there is help in the babysitter realm.

Have you considered joining a babysitting co-op?

I have no idea when or where this concept originated, but it's the best thing since sliced bread. If I wasn't a member of one years ago when my 3 boys were small, I don't think my husband and I would have left the house together at all. Ever.

Here's how it works:
  • Find or start a babysitting co-op near you. For info and logistics on how to start one, go to http://www.sittingaround.com. It was recently mentioned in Real Simple magazine.
  • You trade off sitting. You sit for one family, collect points (or sticks when I was a member), and then you redeem them for FREE sitting.
  • The benefits - did I mention FREE SITTING!!!
  • Your sitter is another mom, not a young teen, so she's more experienced.
  • The sitter can drive herself to your house!
  • The sitter doesn't have a curfew!
  • You can earn points by sitting in the daytime (disguised as a play date for your child) and redeem them at night (called a play date with your husband).
  • You know the sitter before she comes to sit. Usually she's a friend.
The mom sitter wins because:
  • She gets to be out of her house at night.
  • In a quiet house while your kids are sleeping.
  • She has no house to clean, no messes to pick up.
  • She just sits and enjoys the silence! Remember, she's left her house in charge of her husband, so it's kind of like a night off for her.
  • She's earning points to redeem at a later date.
This is a win/win situation if I ever saw one!

Now, some people say they feel uncomfortable with having an adult sit for them that they are not paying. Get over it. Treat it like a business transition it is, and everyone wins. Give it a try. For a bit of effort on your part, you can significantly decrease the cost of a night out.

Now go have fun!

be organized.....evelyn

If you would like more organizing tips, find more in my eBook, 30 Days to an Organized Home, by clicking on the title. You can get a free sample download here too! 

2 comments:

Erica said...

Thanks for mentioning our site! Babysitting coops are a lifesaver (and sanity saver) for sure.

~Erica
Founder, SittingAround.com

Evelyn Cucchiara said...

Erica,

I'm happy to mention anything that helps with the babysitting crunch!

Evelyn