Annie's Nannies – Seattle https://aniseattle.com Your Family, Our Priority - Since 1984 Wed, 05 Jun 2019 15:16:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.2 What Can I Expect During a Newborn Photo Session? /2019/newborn-photography-session-seattle/ Tue, 04 Jun 2019 20:35:24 +0000 /?p=7769

by Nicole Griswold

Your sweet little bundle is here, and you want time to stand still as you soak in their tiny little features. While I may not have the power to stop time completely, my title as a full-time Seattle area newborn photographer can indeed help you remember it all.

Who: I just want good photos. How do I know you’re the right photographer for us?

Hi there! I’m Nicole Griswold. Allow me to introduce myself as I’m a guest writer on this blog. I am a full-time newborn, child, and family photographer located here in the Seattle area. I serve a large part of the Puget Sound and commute to locations all over Western Washington capturing birth moments, new life, and family memories.

Before I started my business five years ago, I was a nanny for over fifteen years through Annie’s Nannies. It was through ANI that I was introduced to Newborn Care Specialist training and jobs, and my deep love for newborns only grew stronger.

What: I have a quick-moving stealth ninja toddler too. How fast is your shutter?

My biggest goal in a newborn session is safe posing and comfortable babies and families. My training and experience have shaped a strong desire to always follow baby’s cues and strictly adhere to safe posing standards. I am a firm believer in creating a safe space for all to heal during the fourth trimester. Therefore many of my newborn photos are centered around family snuggling baby, unposed and imperfectly perfect.

Your goal as a family during our time together is to relax, interact, and allow me to practice my years of experience as a childcare provider on any squirrely toddler or older sibling that may not be having it! I understand this is a shock to their universe, and I look forward to turning our time into a fun experience for all.

Where: My house is a wreck, where do we do photos?

I promise I won’t tell anyone about your laundry pile if you don’t tell them about mine. I understand the new tiny bundle in your arms has wreaked havoc on your life, and you may not have everything done on your chores list when I arrive. My job is to work around your chaos to create timeless memories so you remember how baby felt in your arms, the tiny little squeaks she made when you brushed her cheek, and the smell of the soft baby fuzz on top of her head. I’m not worried about trends or how your house is decorated, but rather capturing lifelong memories.

When: How soon can you get here? Can I nap while you photograph my kids?

If you still aren’t convinced that your home is where you want to capture your new little one, I also offer sessions in the space you gave birth in the first 48-hours of life. For in-home sessions, I typically try to schedule them between four days and fourteen days to allow for milk to come in if you’re breastfeeding, and for you to get a bit more comfortable at home. There’s no need to be concerned about if baby is fussy or awake; my training as a Newborn Care Specialist and Professional Nanny of over 15 years gives me the confidence and patience needed to capture baby just as they are without any additional fret.

It is a privilege and honor to be one of the first people invited into your home after baby is born. I look forward to capturing this sacred space with you!

]]> Hiring a Baby Nurse /2019/hiring-a-baby-nurse/ Mon, 20 May 2019 19:04:18 +0000 /?p=7747 By Amber Barrett

Part 1 of 3 of our Postpartum Provider series.

Wait. A baby nurse? Actually, the term “baby nurse” while still used quite frequently, is not the best term to use. Why not? For one, it can be confusing as you may assume with this term you will have a licensed nurse caring for your little one. Secondly, there are a number of options for someone who wants to work with newborns…did you know there are 3 different types that we staff here at Annie’s Nannies? For those reasons, we use an all-encompassing term to help group anyone that works with newborns; we call them “postpartum providers.”

So if I can’t hire a baby nurse, who can I hire? That’s a great question!   At ANI you can hire a night nanny, postpartum doula, or newborn care specialist.  Let’s go over the different types:

A Night Nanny has lots of experience with newborns, has worked for many families caring for newborns overnight, and while they may not have any specific newborn care training, are highly experienced and worth considering. A night nanny has only one focus-baby care. Fun fact: some have come to us that do have medical backgrounds but love the night nanny work!

A Postpartum Doula (PPD) is a certified professional with training as a doula. Their main goals are to support the mother and the family in their new role; they may help with breastfeeding, offering some household help during day shifts including laundry, meal prep, and errands. At night, your PPD is focused on helping you maximize sleep while ensuring they are helping you meet your goals. Fun fact: your PPD is there for non-judgmental support, evidence-based education, and supporting both partners in their new role as parents.

A Newborn Care Specialist (NCS) has taken a course or multiple courses and has a certificate as a NCS. Their main goal is to not only provide education and offer evidence-based information, but their main focus while in your home is your newborn. Most work overnights and help parents maximize sleep. Fun fact: Your NCS can help teach healthy sleep hygiene; just ask!

Whether you hire a night nanny, a postpartum doula, or a newborn care specialist, know that you will be able to maximize your sleep while still bonding with your baby!

**Its important to note that many new moms worry that if they hire night help, their provider will take the baby all night and not let mom nurse; this is definitely not true. Helping a new mom establish a breastfeeding relationship with a new baby is of utmost importance to providers; the great part about having night help is that instead of having to get out of bed (especially when still healing after birth), your provider brings baby to you, as well as water, snacks, and whatever else you need. And…once baby is done, you can roll over and get right back to sleep so you have energy the next day, while your provider handles burps, diaper changes, and helps soothe baby back to sleep.

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Top 5 Nursery Must-Haves /2019/nursery-must-haves/ Fri, 29 Mar 2019 21:39:59 +0000 /?p=7419 By Amber Barrett

Let’s face it – there are so many baby products out there. And honestly, I don’t think many of them are needed. Yes, they might make a cute baby shower gift, but in all honesty, it will likely get shoved into the back of the closet in the nursery, coming up for air two years later. That being said, after years of working with infants, there are five items I think every nursery should have. This is not a sponsored article or an ad, just some honest opinions on what I think every parent should consider having in their nursery (if you click any of the links below, I do get a tiny kick-back; wanted to be honest).

1.  A Good Swaddle

Yes, a swaddle. Your baby just spent roughly nine months in a very confined space; being swaddled for sleep helps calm and comfort your baby. It also helps calm the moro or startle reflex that all newborns have; this can be very startling for your baby when trying to sleep and will typically wake your baby.  There have been some recent concerns about swaddling and some hospitals even go as far as to suggest not swaddling. The reason being is that some parents swaddle their baby incorrectly, restricting their hips, which can lead to various issues like hip dysplasia. But don’t let that scare or deter you. If you have concerns about swaddling correctly, you can purchase an easy swaddle that has an open sack at the bottom, ensuring that you allow for free movement of your baby’s legs. I also hear from some of my clients and parents that their baby “just doesn’t like it”; honestly, what I typically find is that the parents are just not swaddling tight enough and baby wiggles free. I have two great videos you can find on Instagram using one of my favorite swaddles, the SwaddleMe. I also have another one showing what I like to call the “houdini swaddle” using the SwaddleMe and a simple nursery blanket for the “houdini” babies. You can find the videos here: https://www.instagram.com/seattlebabywhisperer/

2. Black-Out Curtains

Your baby has not only just been in a very tight and confining space, they have also been in a very dark place. By putting black-out curtains in the room you and your baby will be sleeping in, you are creating a space that your baby will find comforting.

3. A White Noise Machine

On the list to continue making your baby’s space calm and comforting is a really good white noise machine. I know many people who have said that they don’t want to use white noise for their baby; they want their baby to “just sleep” and not need anything to help. Your baby was just in an environment that was as loud as a vacuum! And while you may find your newborn will sleep through just about anything the first few weeks, by the six-week mark, you’ll start to notice that any little bang or noise will startle your little one. White noise helps block those background noises and helps allow for really good rest, which you will want by six weeks; I promise.

4. A Newborn Lounger

On the list is a newborn lounger or any type of product that allows you to put your baby down while baby is awake while you say, make a bottle, run to the restroom, answer the door, etc. At some point, you will need to put your little bundle of joy down…somewhere. Instead of placing your baby in an unsafe place like the couch or a recliner which I’ve seen many parents do, having a safe place for baby is key. I really like these options that you can have in your main living area:

5. A Red or Orange Nightlight

Lastly, for all those night-time feedings, I tell all of my sleep consulting clients to use a red or orange nightlight. A harsh white light in the middle of the night is not fun for anyone, especially you and your baby. Red or orange light has been shown to not have any effect on melatonin and I find I can easily see just enough to allow me to change a diaper or feed a baby. Plus, I find its less distracting for baby and doesn’t disturb anyone else that may be sleeping in the room. Here are my two favorites that I recommend to my sleep consulting clients:

 

 

]]> On-Call Nanny Tips! /2019/on-call-nanny-tips/ Fri, 15 Mar 2019 22:19:23 +0000 /?p=7262 by Crystal Gwinn

On-Call nannies provide top-notch care to children across The Greater Seattle Area while engaging with eager new families. That is no small feat! At ANI, we are proud of our dedicated team of caregivers and value their skill and professionalism. We are sharing our tips on how to be an all-star On-Call nanny!

Getting Ready

As with any other kind of job, the key to success is showing up prepared. ANI Nannies know that with children, expect the unexpected. To be as prepared as possible, plan plan plan! Plan what you’ll wear, what you’ll bring and definitely check (and recheck) your route.  You’ll be more likely to succeed – and impress the parents.

Dress practically! Neither too ‘dressy’ or ‘too casually’. Arrive clean and fresh, no perfumes. Need a suggestion? You can’t go wrong with dark pants or jeans, comfortable shoes and your ANI T-shirt! Remember that you represent the agency and the family.

Be Curious

It’s ok to arrive with lists of activities and crafts. It’s also ok to ask parents beforehand if their kids have any preferences. Are you going to need rainboots? Extra craft supplies? Magnifying glass? Bubbles?  Fill a tote with goodies to engage (and dazzle) the children.

Here are a few suggested questions to ask when you confirm with the family:

  • Do the children enjoy arts and crafts?
  • Do they prefer indoor or outdoor activities?
  • What kinds of games do they like to do?
  • Do they love books?
  • Make sure you take into account the kids’ ages!

Make a GREAT first impression!

Meeting a new family can be intimidating- luckily you are a dedicated pro and to keep a few key things in mind. Remember to be enthusiastic and open – not afraid to show your bubbly side and energy! Smile and make eye contact to show you are listening and you are open.

Go Get ‘Em!

Be confident and positive when you first interact with the parents. Some parents are ready to run out the door, some may have time to chit-chat. Read their cues! Make sure you ask pertinent questions, engage quickly with the children, and show that you are a true professional. Treat children with the same level of respect that you would pay to their parents.

Everyday is an Adventure!

Be sure to keep the children engaged- we know that screen time (yours and theirs) will be at an absolute minimum. Use your judgement to provide a variety of learning activities, games, rest time and creativity. Keep in mind any special requests or scheduling cues given by parents.

Here is the go-to checklist for STAR On-call nannies!

  • Confirm the address with parents as soon as you’ve accepted the job
  • Plan your route ahead of time
  • Arrive on-time
  • Be friendly and confident!
  • No heavy perfumes/odors
  • Be prepared to keep kids active and engaged
  • Bring your own snacks- never expect a meal to be provided
  • Keep your phone put away
  • Ask parents for emergency numbers/unexpected deliveries, etc.
  •  You’ve got this!

Interested in becoming an ANI On-Call Nanny? Apply today!

 

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Do’s and Don’ts of References /2019/dos-and-donts-of-references/ Thu, 21 Feb 2019 22:05:03 +0000 /?p=7209 By Fleur Coe

Do:

  • Ask first: A prepared referee usually gives the strongest recommendations. You want your referees to have time to think and reflect on your job roles and responsibilities, and how you performed. There’s nothing more awkward than being on the receiving end of a reference call you aren’t expecting.
  • Provide multiple contact options: Ask your referees for two methods of contact (e.g. cell phone and email) (also ask for their preferred) and the appropriate time to get in touch with them. Your potential employer will do their best to follow these.
  • Provide a written reference: Be sure that it includes the family’s contact details and is dated – We love reading letters from happy parents!
  • Keep records: When you worked for each family, what your main roles and responsibilities were, ages of kids when you started and finished. It is also a good idea to touch base every now and again with the most important references to make sure you have updated contact information.

 

Don’t:

  • Ask for a reference at an inappropriate time: It is only appropriate to ask for a reference when you (1) have given/received notice or (2) have been with a family for a while and are looking for supplemental work (like on-call or weekend work).
  • Send screen grabs of reviews from online babysitter websites: These aren’t verifiable and exclude important contact details and other information.
  • Fudge dates to try and hide a job that didn’t go well: It’s better to include it and be honest than to have your potential employer call the referees and be given different dates. The nanny and family have to be the right fit for a position to work out – sometimes it doesn’t and that’s ok.
  • Use your own family as references: even if the relationship was nanny/employer for a period of time, having your sister-in-law (for example) as a referee is inappropriate. You will need to source other references.
  • Use your current family as a reference when they don’t know you’re job hunting yet: This one is pretty self-explanatory 🙂 Treat your current employers with respect – you wouldn’t like showing up to work one day to see them interviewing another nanny! Sometimes nannies do job search before giving notice, but you’ll need to use previous families as your references until you have given notice.
  • Forget to thank them: Your references may have been glowing and all may have been favorable, but sometimes there are just more qualified applicants, or a position just isn’t the right fit. Regardless of the outcome, thank your referees personally and graciously for taking the time to speak on your behalf. There will be other positions in the future.​
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Advanced NCS training coming to Seattle on November 3rd & 4th, 2018! /2018/advancedncs2018/ Tue, 24 Jul 2018 17:46:09 +0000 /?p=6881 Advanced NCS training coming to Seattle on November 3rd & 4th, 2018!

This two day workshop will provide the latest in Newborn Care education, NCS training, business tips, techniques and more.

This weekend training will provide the latest in Newborn Care education, NCS training, business tips and techniques, and more.

Topics Include:

  • Advanced Sleep Conditioning Techniques
  • Advanced Infant Feeding: the science behind breast-milk, formula and alternatives, plus working with babies with cleft palate, babies on feeding tubes and other specialty devices
  • Infant Brain Development and how sleep, nutrition and environment impact newborn brain development
  • Working with Premature Babies
  • Special Needs Car Seat Use for Preemies
  • Working with Multiples-twins, triplets and more!
  • Working for High Profile Clients
  • Alternative Care Options for Common Infant Ailments
  • Difficulties in the NCS world and how to handle them
  • Better Business Practices

BONUS Material:

  • Access to our PRIVATE NCS & Mentoring Facebook Group
  • Comprehensive Training Workbook
  • This class REQUIRES (minimum one of the below items):
  • Prior NCS Training – NCS Foundational class OR NCS approved training course (instructor approval required) +
  • minimum 1 NCS job
  • Postpartum Doula Training plus at least one Postpartum Doula client with hands on baby care
  • 3 years equivalent experience as NCS or PPD and instructor approval
Click Here to Register!

For any questions, you can email info@newborncaresolutions.com.

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Watch Me Work…..#WatchMeNanny /2016/watch-me-work-watchmenanny/ Thu, 26 May 2016 19:56:08 +0000 /?p=5106 View More: http://orangeanchor.pass.us/denning2The ANI team believes what Nannies do every day is some of the most important work on the planet. Seriously.

We want to show everyone how hard you work and how amazing you are!

We’ve launched our new Instagram page and want you to help us fill it with awesome pictures and videos of you doing what you all rock at….Nannying!

Want to Join us? Here’s what to do:

1. Get permission to post pictures/videos of you with your nanny kids first! If you can’t include kiddos, just send us a picture of you!

2. Post on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter and tag Annie’s Nannies and include the hashtag #watchmenanny.

3. You can also email us your pictures/videos and we will post for you!

FIND US and FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

Instagram: anniesnanniesinc

Facebook: Annie’s Nannies, Inc.

Twitter: @AnniesNannies

Now let’s blow up social media with #watchmenanny!!

Also, check out ANI work in our video mashup we posted yesterday!

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When You (Or your Nanny Boss) Works From Home /2016/when-you-or-your-nanny-boss-works-from-home/ /2016/when-you-or-your-nanny-boss-works-from-home/#comments Tue, 19 Apr 2016 22:41:58 +0000 /?p=5043 momchild

By: Jenny Williams, Temporary Director

In this day and age, with increasing technology and flexibility from employers available to working parents, more and more moms and dads find themselves working from home while still needing a nanny to help take care of the children. Some parents prefer to shut themselves in their home office and ask not to be interrupted. Others will come in and out or set up a work station in an area that they can still interact with their child/children. Regardless of the setup, we know that this scenario is one we will see with increasing frequency in the years to come.

We have heard from numerous families and nannies of “parent-at-home” arrangements that have both flourished and tanked. What are some ways that you can work with the nanny at home to maximize success for both parties?

  1. Strive for clear roles and expectations from the beginning. As soon as the parent and nanny are on the same page as to who will take care of what (and when), if/when the parent should be interrupted while working, and who has authority on which situations, things will start to naturally settle into place. Don’t expect this process to be easy and bump-free. Again, flexibility is huge as the two of you work out the best arrangement for the situation.
  2. Do consider setting up a separate work space away from the nanny and children. This is by far the most successful setup we have seen of parents working from home. Inevitably, children rarely want to stay with a nanny when they know mom or dad are in the next room. In addition, setting up a separate work space will prevent you from constantly wanting to check in or “see how things are going.” Unplanned interruptions can throw off the best routines, leaving the nanny feeling frustrated and unable to make progress with her own relationship with the children.
  3. Understand that nannies want to feel useful in their job. If you are doing everything for your child that you would normally do when the nanny isn’t there, she will start to feel unnecessary and wonder why she is even there.
  4. Schedule a regular check-in (once a month ideally to start) with the nanny to see if things are going well for both parties. Both parties should have the expectation that this meeting is a good time to bring up both things that are working well and things that need to be addressed/tweaked.
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Annie’s Nannies Sponsors National Nanny Training Day 2016! /2016/annies-nannies-sponsors-national-nanny-training-day-2016/ Wed, 03 Feb 2016 19:04:18 +0000 /?p=4925 NNTD 2016

 

For the 5th year in a row Annie’s Nannies is working with the Northwest Nanny Association to bring you an amazing day of training!  National Nanny Training Day 2016 is a nationwide day of training for nannies, being sponsored by various nanny groups and agencies across the country.  Why is training so important for nannies?  Because keeping current on all the latest in child development and safety is the most important indicator of quality child care!

WHEN: Saturday, April 16th 2016 from 8:30am-4:30pm

WHAT: A full days line-up of speakers and workshops–more details to come soon! Lunch included. Raffles and networking with fellow nannies!

PRICE: GET EARLY BIRD FEES if you sign up by February 29th!  $31.74 for NWNA members and $36.87 for non-members.

guardian-association-affiliate-program-sign-up-now

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When You Need to Let Your Nanny Go /2016/when-you-need-to-let-your-nanny-go/ Fri, 29 Jan 2016 22:48:40 +0000 /?p=4911 DSC_7573Whether it’s due to relocation, change in work arrangements or that elusive spot opening up in daycare, telling your Nanny that you no longer require her services is tough for all involved. She adores your children, your children adore her, and you’ll be sad to see her go!

This is a conversation you need to prepare for; begin by looking at your Nanny-Family work agreement for notice and severance pay minimums. Make a decision on whether to increase or maintain the previous arrangement and put it into writing to hand to the Nanny during the conversation. Most families offer at least 2 weeks’ notice and/or 2 weeks’ severance pay to a long-term Nanny; adding an extra week for each year of employment over year one (e.g. a nanny who has been with the family 3 years would receive 4-6 weeks’ notice+severance). Also, remember to write your Nanny a letter of recommendation.

Arrange a meeting with the Nanny at a time when the children are otherwise occupied and she can go home afterwards to process. Tell her all the positives of your experience with her and how valued she is as part of your childcare “community”. The conversation will likely come as a shock to her, so keep it relatively short and sweet, and organize a time for a follow up conversation a couple of days later.

The next step is to let your children know – it’s best to tell them the truth and do it when the Nanny is present. Make sure the children know that it isn’t their fault that the Nanny is leaving, and that you will stay in contact. Giving the children ample time to adjust and ask questions is the key to success here. Presuming the nanny has taken the news gracefully, these last few weeks can be filled with special activities together and provide lots of lovely memories.

Allowing your Nanny time to job search is also extremely important – work together to find time for your Nanny to update her resume, attend interviews and have trial days with a new family.

If you need more support on ending your Nanny’s employment, please contact a Placement Director today. We are here to help! 

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