Friday, May 21, 2010

Adventures in Babysitting

( Just in case you don't get the obscure movie reference in the title...this was seriously one of my favorite movies growing up. I always wanted to be as cool as Elizabeth Schue, minus getting into crazy situations that I Macgyver my way out of....)

First off, I have to gush a little bit. I have the best job on the face of the planet!

Every other day (and next week, almost every day) I get to go nanny for the three most amazing, creative, and sweet kids on the face of the planet. Now, I may be a little biased, as these little darlings just happen to be my nieces and nephew, but I still say they are the best.

Today, I was late. I slept through my alarm. I felt horrible. I pulled into the front yard, my phone was mom. Kelly had called her to see where I was. I wasn't THAT late, but I guess he was a bit concernicus...

I was in my jammies, my hair in a ponytail, I was carting around my makeup case, my clothes for the day, my purse and my phone. I was ready to hunker down for the day and get to it.

Today wasn't my first day nannying, in fact I've been at it for a few weeks, but today I feel like supernanny!

I rushed into the house. Did Macee's hair, and of course she and Austin were eager to play out front on their bikes while they waited for their walking party to walk by. (They walk to school across a very busy street, but they walk in a huge group so I feel at ease when I watch them ride away in the morning, chattering with their friends.) Of course, on this particular morning, neither of them had eaten. Once I found this out, I rushed to make them some toast. I took it out to them while they were riding their bikes and offered bananas as a side. Macee eagerly accepted, Austin wrinkled his nose in disgust and shook his head (he isn't much of a fruit/veggie connoiseur....)

While I knew the walking party was coming, I didn't feel right about letting the two of them play in the front yard unsupervised, so as Addie begged me to pick out an outfit for her for the day ("Come on Aunt B. You always pick out the most prettiful outfits!" She said over and over again while batting her huge precious moments eyes...she looks like a precious moments figure I KID YOU NOT! and yes, she really did use the word prettiful)

Walking party came and went, then I was off to the basement to find an outfit for Addie. Came back upstairs...she liked the pants but not the shirt...never fear, what's another trip down the stairs for supernanny (let me remind you I am still all grunged out and fabulous in my jammies with my messy, rushed ponytail) Second option was a sensation! Addie eagerly dressed. I put Spongebob on the tellie (thank the Lord for that yellow sponge...seriously, I have never seen any of my nieces or nephew more content to watch a show and pay attention).

Now was my was time for supernanny to become superhottie! I watched Grey's Anatomy last night, and amidst all of the edge of my seat sitting and nail biting moments I did have one random thought..."Wow, Lexie's hair is so cute this episode!" My inspiration for the day, I went to bed last night know that this was how I was going to do my hair. I braided it a few times, a few different ways, trying to get just the right combo. Voila! Masterpiece...struggled with the messy bun in the back a bit, but a few strategically placed bobbypins later and I had near perfection sitting on my head....ahhhh hair!

Now for the coup de grat...I picked up my makeup kit, found a mirror I could easily fit between my knees and went into Amber and Kelly's room to do my makeup. Addie's attention instantly turned from Phineas and Ferb (thank you DVR, you always change the channel to record at just the right time) to me and my makeup. She loves to watch me put on my makeup. She loves it even more when I lightly dab some blush on her cheeks and give her some "lipstitch". "Aunt B. , you look so always look so beautiful Aunt B." ( Okay, so maybe half the reason I went into the bedroom to do my makeup was for the ego boost...she always says that when she watches me.) As I was putting the last touches on my face (trying to do a delicate eyeliner job and perfect fanned lashes with my mascara) Addie began to get restless...she started digging under the covers of the bed. "Aunt B.! Aunt B., come find me !" She would call out. I would lift the pillow she was obviously hiding under, she would laugh hysterically and try to dig herself into the covers even deeper, contorting her body into yoga poses I only wish I could do... We giggled, we laughed... We put on our shoes...I realized I had forgotten some vital items at home.

Turn on the car, the radio is on...Ke$ha's "Your Love is My Drug" comes new jam...I turn it up...Addie, always the constant performer joins me in the best rendition of musical shouting you will ever hear as we dance with our upper bodies in the coolest hip hop motions possible when limited by a seat belt. The next song, the new one by Train...not my favorite (I don't even know the name) but Addie exclaims, "Oh Aunt B. I love this song!" She continues her crazy dance in the back seat. We pull up at mom's halfway through the song.

We open the door to mom's house. Mom is sitting on the couch, watching the Cosby Show, taking her nebulizer treatment. Sheika, my mom's Shih Tzu jumps off the couch and follows Addie around like a love sick puppy until she pays attention to her. Addie leans over and grabs Sheika's face, rubbing her snout and ears...Sheika eats it up and kisses Addie like she never thought she'd see her again, wagging her tail more than I've seen her wag it in the last year. We grab the necessities, bid our adieus and go to Wal-Mart...I had plans for today, big plans.

We buy berries, and Sherbert...necessities for smoothies later, and Addie helps me pick out potting soil and flower seeds, we are going to plant a butterfly garden in some plastic cups and set it up in the backyard when the kids get home. Addie is super excited. We also pick up some bubbles for everyone, a treat for them being so good and doing their chores right away when I asked the last time I was there.

We go home. Time for chores. Addie asks to watch "Odette" which is her way of asking to watch her favorite movie, "The Swan Princess" always makes my heart happy when she watches this. It once was one of my favorites. I can still sing all the songs from memory. I put on "Odette" and head upstairs to tackle the kitchen. I clear the table, I empty and reload the dishwasher, I wipe the counters...I look at the floor...lovely juice splashes are scattered all across it. I look in the living room. The mops are out, Amber must have mopped not long ago, but in a house with 3 kids, you can't expect it to stay clean for long. Mental note...Sweep and mop later! I was getting ready to tackle washing the windows in the living room when Addie came upstairs...her words at this moment could have the power to crush an ordinary nanny...but not supernanny!

"Aunt B. I'm bored! Come play a game with me."

I had 2 choices...well 3...

1) Tell her to go back down and watch her movie and that I would be down shortly
2) Forget about my supernanny glory, and not finish my chore list left by "the boss lady"
3) Be supernanny...

I picked number 3!

I told Addie we couldn't play a game right this minute, but I had something even more fun in mind. I was going to teach her how to wash windows! (its all in the delivery folks, I'm telling you!)

Addie squealed, jumped up and down and exclaimed, "YESSSSSSSSSS!" I grabbed her a rag, I sprayed the windows, showed her how to wipe it, and she went to town....I created a monster...a good monster, but a monster...

"What can we clean now Aunt B.? This is fun!" (I know, I'm a miracle worker...I have converted a 4 year old into a cleaning machine!)

"Well, I need to clean the Bathroom now." I said...clever supernanny...

"YESSSSSSSSSSS! She exclaimed again. We get out the cleaners and make our way to the upstairs bathroom. We put away the various knick knacks, combs, and brushes sitting around the sink and spray the disinfecting cleaner. We leave it to sit, I look at the clock, wash my hands, and throw chicken nuggets and tater tots in the oven (it is the lunch of supernannies everywhere!) Addie jumps up and down with glee, "My favorite! You're the best Aunt B." Yes...I am...

We scrub the bathroom, I teach Addie how to clean the toilet...I lift her to wash the mirror...the bathroom sparkles...Macee walks through the door. Home from Kindergarten...this may be daunting but not for supernanny...lunch is already done. The girls sit at the table and chatter as I dish up the nuggets, tots, and for a balanced meal I also throw some peaches on their plates...(clever clever supernanny) the girls devour their lunches. I ask them to bring their plates to me. We make a human conveyer belt. Addie hands the plates to Macee, who clears them off into the garbage, I then rinse them and place them strategically in the sink for easy placement in the dishwasher that is at that moment running and washing the breakfast/dinner dishes from last night.

"Time for me to go to preschool!" Addie exclaims, I look at the clock. No....still 45 minutes. I bring this to Addie's attention.

"No Aunt B. Its always time for me to go to preschool right after lunch." A regular nanny might be stumped. How to handle this situation? The clever supernanny knows. "Well sweetie, I think Aunt B. got lunch finished a little faster than usual. How about we play that game you wanted to play?"

"Yesssss!" both girls jump and exclaim almost in unison.

Disney Princess Chutes and Ladders. We set up. Macee complains her foot hurts....I examine the foot in question...GIANT SPLINTER! Uh oh...Giant Splinter, and no tweezers...what to do? Never fear, the clever supernanny remembers her girls camp training. She finds a way to push the splinter out. Macee is a trooper, she is brave. Her eyes well with tears, she flinches, but she doesn't cry out as supernanny removes the offensive piece of wood that is causing such does of Neosporin and a Disney Princess Band- Aid later and the game is on. Addie wins...time to leave for Preschool (supernanny somehow managed to go down the same chute 4 times...her charges took pity on her when she was about to go down it for the 5th and let her roll again to avoid the peril...see, they're the best!)

Drop Addie off, and get back to home base. Macee doesn't want to watch a movie, she wants to spend time with her Aunt B. "Well Macee, I have chores to do." "Oh, oh! Let me help! Let me help!" What an awesome supernanny, they bend to my will without even asking. The Glee Soundtrack Volume 1 blares over the speakers of the I-pod player. Dancing and singing along as we went, we begin our tasks. I teach her how to vacuum, how to sweep, and then let her mop with me. The upstairs is sparkling clean now. We move to the basement, on the list of things the "boss lady" left was to vacuum there as well. We pick up toys and put them back in their homes. We scrub the basement bathroom, even sweeping and mopping the floors...Macee is on a roll, she looks up at me with her big, pale blue eyes full of excitement, "Aunt B. What if we cleaned Austin's room and my room and could play a trick on Austin and Addie!?" I knew what she wanted to do. We cleaned and planned what we would say. We decided to tell Austin and Addie that since Macee had helped me clean all afternoon long that they would have to clean the basement together and their rooms. All the while, waiting for them would be a sparkling clean basement and bedrooms.

Austin gets home, we jump in the car to go get Addie from preschool... we deliver the first blow. Austin gets dejected when he hears that he and Addie alone will be cleaning the basement (best joke ever) We get Addie. We deliver the news again...Addie complains that Macee should help...I explain that Macee has been helping all afternoon (again, best joke ever)

We get back to the house...both Austin and Addie walk down the stairs like condemned men walking to the electric chair. Austin goes into his room to clean and stands in silence..." room...its already clean?!" He says, half exclaiming half questioning. He turns to look at me and Macee as we laugh harder than we'd laughed all day. Addie runs to look at her room, starts to scream and runs out and plows Macee over with a hug. Austin joins the doggy pile. We go upstairs. The kids beg me to help them set up the tents to surprise their dad when he gets home (they were planning to camp out in the backyard tonight)

Does supernanny guffaw and say no! NEVER! Supernanny pulls the tents out and sets up each one...2 hours later, my plans for the butterfly garden are pushed back. The kids are playing in the tent. Austin is playing a Roman guard that has come to the tents to protect the princesses inside. I sit on the deck and listen to their game. The butterfly garden can wait. Supernannies know that when kids are being creative, and using their imaginations, you need to just let them go.

About 20 minutes later, my supernanny senses are tingling as the giggles that were once heard in the game are turning into contemptful pleas of "Stop it!" and general unhappiness. Does supernanny get are kids after supernanny, is supernanny.

"Who wants smoothies!?" I cry out, interrupting their tiff.

"Hooray!" The kids whiz past me and into the house.

We put together the blender and pour the berries, some bananas, some leftover peaches from lunch, sherbert, 10 ice cubes, and about a cup of pomegranate juice in. A few pulses later and our Jamba Juice-like creation is prepared. The kids eagerly drink it down.

"Aunt B. You're amazing!" Austin cries out.
"Aunt B. You're amazing!" Addie cries out right after. Macee, not wanting to be left out cries out, "Yeah, Aunt B. You're amazing!" (eat your hearts out all you normal nannies...supernanny...yes, yes...I am...)

I give them all a huge hug and sit to enjoy the fruits of my labors. "Aunt B. can I have some peaches?" Austin asks. Of course he can, I get up to dish some out. The girls chime in that they would like some too. I dish them all out peaches and put them on the table. They eat up and run back outside to play in the tents some more. I clear the table, and load the dishes into the dishwasher. The kitchen survived the smoothies still sparkles as sunbeams peak through the gray clouds outside. I pour the leftover smoothie into a cup for their father to drink...he will be home soon...

The kids rush in! "Aunt B. Can we have our surprise now!"

Good heavens! How could I forget the bubbles I bought them earlier for behaving!" The kids close their eyes. I give them their bubbles, they eagerly run into the front yard to play with them. Amidst the bubble popping frenzy and giggles, Kelly pulls up in his white sedan. I tell him that I hadn't cooked dinner (as usual) because I had been told that he as cooking steak on the grill, he looks dejected....apparently he loves my cooking and has told my sister so...I tell him that if he isn't in the mood to cook steaks, I'm sure there is a pizza parlor or chinese restaurant more than willing to cater to him. He laughs and says, "Well, if the kids want steak, then we will have steak." Macee pulls Kelly inside the house to show him how it sparkles, and tells him all about learning how to vacuum and sweep. Kelly admires the freshly vacuumed carpets and clean kitchen floors. I grab my purse and tell him about his smoothie in the fridge. Macee runs back outside to grab her bubbles and play more.

"Thanks Brittany. You did a great job today!" Kelly calls after me as I step into my car. The kids interrupt their giggle session and bubble blowing to call out, "Goodbye Aunt B. We love you! Thank you!"

A job well done, a day well spent!

Yes...I am super!

Hugs and loves until next time!

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