To Do

To Do

470. Leave lots of snacks for the baby sitter

My Story

Updated June 27, 2009

It seems kind of surprising to me now, but when I was 12 years old, I started a little babysitting business. I got some regular jobs and used the money I earned as spending money to go to school dances and buy lots more clothes and makeup than my parents thought I needed. Twelve seems so young now! Of course, at the time, I thought I was so mature, but I can’t imagine leaving a small child with a 12-year-old. But I managed. I did a good job, actually. I was really popular and in-demand. The kids loved me, the parents loved me. And I usually had a really good time.

The best babysitting jobs were the Friday and Saturday night ones when the parents just wanted to get away for a date night or to go to a party. I’d play with the kids for a few hours, and then after they were put to bed, I’d get to watch the special PG-13 movies my mom let me rent. (I’m the oldest, so my sisters weren’t old enough to watch them at home yet.) And I’d get to raid the kitchen for snacks while I watched. Sometimes what I’d find there was just disappointing. But some people were thoughtful enough to leave ice cream, pudding, candy, chips, sodas, all kinds of yummy stuff I wasn’t allowed to eat at home.

Let’s face it – babysitters aren’t particularly well-paid. I know it was 20 years ago, but my going rate was $1 per hour per child. I had to watch four kids just to beat minimum wage. For that kind of deal, babysitters need a little something extra – like a surprise bag of Fritos and a Kit Kat.

Of course, first, I have to have some kids for a babysitter to watch, then I have to find a babysitter…


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