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Friday, July 2, 2010

Financial Free Friday: News For Regarding Nannies

Financial Free Friday: News For Regarding Nannies
by: Alice Shaffer

As we head into a  long holiday weekend for 4th of July, we at Regarding Nannies also enter into our  2nd year.  Last year for 4th of July I was in Virginia Beach putting together our Regarding Nannies blog and sending off things for Glenda and Kellie to proof and look at.  This year we are all working hard again for some fantastic things! We can hardly wait till Monday for things to be shared!

Please join us on Monday July 5, 2010 at Regarding Nannies  as we start the week long birthday celebration of Regarding Nannies as we turn 1.  

We will have our own version of colorful fireworks, party excitement, gathering of friends, memories to share and new news.  You will want to be there daily to see what we have in store.  Could you be a winner?  Could you be featured on the blog?  How will you share in our excitement as we turn 1?

As we are doing some change overs from Blogger to Wordpress, your email subscriptions possibly might be lost, so your email subscriptions should be fine, but if you don't get the email on Monday, please stop by the blog and re-sign up for email subscriptions. We shouldn't lose anyone, but want to make to sure you know what is going on in case it happens.  If you have any questions don't forget you can email us at regardingnannies (at) gmail (dot) com  or find us on Twitter at bloggingnannies and facebook!

Have a safe and wonderful 4th of July weekend. We look forward to seeing everyone on Monday at 8am!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Table Talk Thursday: Where You Can Find A Nannypalooza: Nannies Across America Event

Table Talk Thursday: Where You Can Find A Nannypalooza: Nannies Across America Event
by Alice Shaffer

On Monday, Regarding Nannies featured "Monday Moxie: Nannies Across America" in which Sue Downey shared with us what the 2010 Nannypalooza will be all about.  Many cities are in the works already of planning a wonderful day of learning for professional nannies.   These events will be held during the weekend of Sept 18th and 19th, 2010. 

I am sharing with you today, some of the fun events planned already.  Many cities are still planning their "Nannies Across America" event.  To find out who is  planning things please visit the listings of cities.


Name of Group/Person hosting NAA: Central Florida Nannies

contact name: Marcia Van de Kieft

contact email:


Date: Saturday, September 18th, 2010 8am-4:30pm

Location: Hampton Inn North Orlando 151 Douglas Avenue, Altamonte Springs, FL

Cost: $20

How to register and deadline: Details can be found on our website under the "Nannypalooza Orlando" tab. Or, you may email us at for more info. We accept Credit, Debit, Check & Money Order. (All Credit & Debit transactions will be charged an additional $2 service fee.)

Workshops being held:

We are still working on finalizing our workshop schedule,

We are having the following workshops:
  • Presenting Yourself to Families
  • Taking Care of Nanny
  • Sign Language to increase communication & literacy
  • Potty Training Basics
  • Redirecting Children's Behaviors

Anything else you want to add:

Our event includes 8 workshops, Breakfast, Lunch and a Social Networking Event for just $20!!! You can't get that kind of fun for so cheap anywhere... and learn at the same time! :) Since our event is being held at a Hampton Inn, we also have a room block (under Nannypalooza Orlando/Central Florida Nannies) for $69/night (includes hot breakfast). So, attendee's can make a weekend get-away out of it. It's going to be a lot of fun!!
Name of Group/Person hosting NAA: Michigan Professional Nanny Association

contact name: Tara Lindsay

contact email:


Date: Saturday, September 18, 2010 8:30am-4:30pm

Location: Lahser High School, Bloomfield Hills

Cost: $25

How to register and deadline: Registration opens August 9, 2010 through September 15. Pre-registration before August 9 to

Workshops being held:

*Michigan Mandated Reporter Training

*Arts and Crafts for the non-artsy nanny

*Professional Communication Skills: How to successfully navigate problems and troubles with your employers

*Stop the Meanness, Spread the Kindness: Family conflicts, Sibling rivalry, and social bullying

*Behavior and Nutrition: How what they eat affects how they act

*Self Defense for Caregivers

*Sticky Subjects: Talking to kids of all ages about drugs

*Ask Another Nanny: Roundtable style solution session

Anything else you want to add:
If your industry related business would like to sponsor Nannypalooza Detroit and/or donate items for goodie bags, please contact
Name of Group/Person hosting NAA: Northshore Professional Nanny Agency & Northshore Professional Nanny Alliance

contact name: Mary Boyle

contact email:

website: or

Date: Saturday, September 18th

Location: Schlitz Audobon Nature Center (SANC) Bayside, WI

Cost: $0

How to register and deadline: RSVP by Aug. 18th to

Workshops being held: We will be having several speakers, including: Patti Bailey, Director of the SANC Preschool will be speaking about the importance of nature in child development. Patti's workshop will include a tour of the preschool and outdoor play areas, as well as take-home materials for each participant. Marcia Hall, INA 2x NOTY nominee CPN and Parent Coach will be speaking about Children's Personal Style. Dr. Amy Leventhal, Child Psychologist, will be speaking about Cognitive Discoveries - and more TBA!!

Anything else you want to add: We will be having a raffle, gift bags for each participant, a round-table problem-solving session and an optional dinner in the evening. Also, lunch will be provided and each participant will receive a certificate of participation. We are looking forward to a great conference!!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Fun with Nature from the Creative Nanny

Summer is in full swing and the little ones are looking for things to do. Get outside and connect with nature. Here are some ideas for learning and appreciating all that nature has to offer - many in your own back yard!

Baking with seeds

Discuss how plants come from seeds. Open a bean seed and show the tiny plant inside. Explain that there are some seeds that we plant to grow food and other seeds that can be eaten just as they are (poppy seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and caraway seeds).

Make some muffins and top them with seeds.

(Sample recipe – Mix one package of dried yeast with 1 cup warm water. Mix 2 cups flour, 1 tsp salt and 1 tbsp sugar together. Add yeast mixture. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface. Break into balls and put into greased muffin tins. Sprinkle with poppy and sesame seeds on top and let the dough rise. Then bake at 350F for twenty minutes).

Sweet Potato Plant

Fill a small jar 2/3 with water and place a sweet potato (narrow end down) into jar. Secure the potato in place with toothpicks. Place jar in a warm, dark place and add water when necessary. When a stem appears, place the jar in a sunny window and observe the growth occurring each day. Can record the growth in a small book by drawing pictures, pasting cutouts, or colouring in the number of leaves on a sweet potato picture.

For all the fun filled summer nature ideas, read the entire article at Creative Nanny.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Summer Reading for Grown Ups

Last  week we featured books for kids, this week we will feature the grown up books.
Special thanks to
Angela Jackson, Kristen Kanoski, Andrea Flagg,Becky Kavanagh, Tara Lindsay, Jennifer Gay,April Krause, Beth Taylor and Donna Saunders for the enthusiastic and prompt response to these questions.
We have included links so you can click and buy at

What is your favorite grown up book that you can read over and over again and never get tired of it.
Andrea Flagg:I love books about anyone overcoming hardships especially surviors of the Holocaust-
So-All but my life- by Gerda Weissmann Klein
by~ Livia Bitton-Jackson

Becky Kavanagh: Anything written by Jane Austin . . . I just love her writing! And on that same not anything written by Fannie Flagg - again she's amazing!

Tara Lindsay: I can read Wuthering Heights forever. I also love Laurie Notaro's non-fiction books (they always crack me up!). "P.S. I love you" by Cecilia Ahern (which is far, far, far better than the movie could have ever hoped to be), and "Introduction to the Devout Life" by St. Francis de Sales.

Jennifer Gay: Grown up books I can read over and over. The Twilight series and anything by Nicholas Sparks

Beth Taylor: Probably the Babysitters Club series..LOL.
What are you reading right now?
Angela Jackson: Nora Roberts-The Stanilaski series(this is not available on Amazon right now but we gave you a link to Nora Roberts books)
Kristen Kanoski:
Apple Turnover Murder by Joanne Fluke, a super easy read and no thinking required.
Andrea Flagg: Killing Willis by Todd Bridges
Tara Lindsay:  Right now I am rereading "To Kill a Mockingbird" with some friends.
April Krause: Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates

What do you plan to read this summer?
Angela Jackson: Nora Roberts, The Help, Percy and the Olympians
Kristen Kanoski: The Help, Lovely Bones and The Shack, again
Andrea Flagg: The new Kendra Wilkenson book
 I love Biographies- and can only read non-fiction.
Becky Kavanagh: Summer is my time to reread all my favorites - Emma, Sense and Sensibility, Fried Green Tomatoes . . . you see my obsession?! I indulge in it during the summer. I also try to include a few mysteries just to bring in some variety. HA!!

Tara Lindsay: I don't plan ahead much in my reading...I pretty much just go with whatever appeals to me at the moment. I read 4-5 books a week as it is.

 Beth Taylor: Pick up the rest of the Yada Yada prayer group series at the library and continue and complete that series

Donna Saunders:whatever catches my eye
One final note : April Krause shared this website with us,
She says it's a great site to keep track of books that you read or want to read.

We hope you enjoyed this feature and that you discovered some books you want to read this summer too.
Please share with us, what your favorites are and what you plan to read this summer.
Several of our contributors mentions "The Help" I just finished this book and highly recommend it. I absolutely loved it.
Happy Reading!
Don't forget to share your favorite books with us in the comment section!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Monday Moxie: Nannies Across America

Nannies Across America
By Sue Downey

Professional conferences are a great way to sharpen skills, network with others in your profession and rejuvenate yourself in your current job. Conferences can be particularly beneficial for nannies as we work unconnected to our peers and often with little professional support. It is important to recognize that while many nannies have the earning power or supportive families to attend conferences there are still many working nannies who struggle to make ends meet or who do not have families willing to give them funds or time off to develop professionally. These nannies are exactly the people who need this training the most, as they are often just starting out in the profession or are unconnected to resources and professional mentoring. Thus we founded Nannypalooza on the principal that learning and networking can be low cost, high quality and fun!

Nannypalooza has been quite successful in many ways bringing hundreds of nannies together and sharing loads of information. Our cost has always been rock bottom but the conference has always gotten high marks from most of our attendees. However, many nannies still have problems getting to Nannypalooza. There are travel costs, hotel costs, time off work etc.. that pose challenges to working nannies. SO this year we decided to take all that we have learned about putting together the conference and empower local nannies and agencies to put together their own mini conference. Thus the idea of Nannies Across America was born. We decided to partner with National Nanny Recognition Week in order to bring some positive attention to the great work we do. Therefore all the events will take place the weekend of Sept 18th and 19th.

This event promises to be the largest nanny training event ever! And the excitement is growing. We ask coordinators to plan an event that meets the basic Nannypalooza criteria: that it has at least 2 workshops (one professional development, one childcare), that it provide nannies with the opportunity to network and get some personal support, and that it be low cost, inclusive and fun. After meeting these initial requirements, the coordinators can get creative adding additional social components, more workshops and themes to the mix. Some events will be large attracting more than 75 nannies while other events will be smaller depending on the event planner and the nanny community in that particular city.

Our goal is to have events in 25 cities and we are well on our way! Events are already planned in Orlando, Detroit, Seattle, Cincinnati, and many more locations. Just think of it- if only 20 nannies in 25 cities participate then we will have more than 600 nannies gathered virtually together learning, making friends, growing and having fun. What a great thing for our profession.

More importantly these local events give nannies who are “unconnected” a chance to see what a conference is all about. They can plug into the world of the professional nanny and develop skills and gather resources that will open a new world to them. Gathering like these will provide the first steps for many nannies to gain confidence and skills that will put them on the path to professionalism. And we hope that they will see the benefits of attending conferences and classes and start to look for more opportunities to grow.

And did I mention it will be fun!! How great it will be to take a few hours off and enjoy the company of your local nanny community. How fantastic to share your expertise and ideas with others who really understand!

If you are interested in planning an event in your area, or helping out with an event in the works we are looking for you!! It doesn’t take any special skills, just a passion to help out and a sense of adventure. We have plenty of resources and can assist you along the way. And it important to remember that any gathering of any size can make a difference!! There are nannies out there who need these events, whether it be something casual for 20 people, or something more elaborate at a hotel for 100. The important part of Nannies Across America is that everyone is welcome and will come away with some new ideas and new friends!

We are currently looking for planners in the following areas-

any California cities
Las Vegas
New York, New Jersey metro area
St Louis

Or many more locations!!!

For more info check out the website at Nannies Across America!
or the listing of currently planned events-

Please check back on July 1 for Table Talk Thursday when we share some more in depth information on the Nannies Across America events already in the works.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Weekend Round Up

Weekend Round UP

Here are the links to this weeks articles in case you missed something:

Monday Moxie: The sixth article in Kellie's series: Taking your support group to the next level

Tuesday Tips: Some of our friends favorite children's books and great books you might not have heard about.

Wednesday Creative Nanny: Glenda reminds you of some Simple Car Games you might have forgotten.

Thursday Table Talk Christy Ochs shares her experience with learning about "Love and Logic"

Friday Financial Nanny: Alice shares tips on affordable organics.

We are coming up on our one year anniversary for Regarding Nannies. We will have lots of excitement the week of July 5th so stay tuned. Be sure to share with us your favorite articles and features from the past year or what you would like to see in the future. We LOVE to hear from you.
Next week we will feature the grown up books that our readers recommend, Kellie will share more themes with us on Creative Nanny Wednesday and on Financial Friday Alice will tell us about Swagbucks!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Financial Friday: More On Eating Healthy Organics & Affording Them

Financial Friday: More On Eating Healthy Organics & Affording Them
by Alice Shaffer

Regarding Nannies covered National Food Allergy week back in the beginning of May.  I am embarking on a more natural and less processed eating lifestyle.  There are so many "organics/gluten free" items on the market, but what really is true "organic/gluten free" items. While researching this I found an awesome blog post addressing buying organic foods and eating healthier for less.  We all know that eating healthy can cost more than eating processed foods and fast food.  It comes from the blog, The Digerati Life.   The Digerati Life is a great blog about various finance issues. Make sure to go check it for the other helpful posts on the site. 

How to Buy Organic Food and Eat Well for Less Money

by Guest Blogger on June 18, 2010 | edited by SVB
Great tips on buying organic food at a lower cost.
The organic food market has become huge in the past five years. However, some consumers are still very skeptical about the whole “organic” craze because at times it seems like many foods are getting slapped with the organic label only to be charged at a higher price.
“Organic food” can mean a variety of different things depending on what the item is. For instance, it can mean that there are no preservatives or artificial junk in packaged food. It can also mean that dairy products are processed differently. For vegetables and fruits, it can mean that no pesticides or genetic altering is used.
buy organic food
Image from
After watching the documentary “Food Inc”, I decided to take a closer look at what I am eating including how’s it’s being prepared, how it’s being raised, and where it’s coming from. Meats were my biggest concern, and I now try to buy only organic beef that comes from cows that are naturally raised and grass-fed, chicken that’s raised ethically and with no hormones, and fish that are caught from the wild.

All of that comes at a premium price and I’m willing to pay it. However, I’ve learned that there are some key ways to save money when buying organic food and I’d like to share some of those tips to help you eat organically and save money at the same time:

How to Buy Organic Food and Eat Well for Less Money

1. Look for options at your regular supermarket first.
Whole Foods and other premium supermarkets that are strictly organic are notorious for being about 20% to 30% more expensive than other supermarkets. Many of the other supermarkets stock organic alternatives that may be cheaper than the brands Whole Foods carries. Make sure to check these items out as you may be able to get great deals on organic food.
Even at Whole Foods, there have been a ton of sales lately that make their products a lot more affordable. Make sure to get the coupon booklet when you enter the store. On a side note, Whole Foods also runs some great dinner deals (e.g. in Chicago, every Wednesday they have $8.99 16 inch pizzas including 1 topping made to order).

2. Try your local farmer’s market.
I always check out my local farmer’s market for produce, especially for fruits and vegetables that are in season. This is a great option because you’ll get extremely fresh product at great prices. Not only that but you’ll be helping to stimulate your local economy by buying from local farmers and you get to interact with them too.

3. Grow your own vegetables in your backyard home garden.
You may not want a full-blown home vegetable garden in your backyard but certain spices and vegetables can be grown for relatively cheap and without much daily maintenance. The greatest benefit of growing your own produce is that after the upfront cost of buying the seeds, the rewards are endless as long as you water and take care of the plants. It’s also a fun side project or hobby especially when Springtime rolls around. Learn more about the benefits of a home garden and how you can save money.

4. Join a food co-op.
Joining a food co-op can really help you to save money on meats. Buy in bulk and if you have an extra freezer, freeze the meat and use it for the next month or two. Check out what kind of co-ops are available in your area by a doing a search online. This is a pretty neat concept and works well.

5. Choose to buy only organic foods that are most important to you.
My wife and I frequently shop at Whole Foods but only purchase meats and dairy. These foods are most important to us in terms of being ethically raised, farmed, and processed. If you do ALL of your shopping at an organic supermarket, you’ll spend about double on food unless you shop during the right sales and stay disciplined. In our case, we weren’t all that concerned about getting organic granola or organic tortilla chips. So for foods other than meat and dairy, we shop at Publix, a big discount supermarket chain in the Southeast.

6. Rethink your meals
Finally, try coming up with meals that use fresh ingredients but can be prepared in large batches. That way you can easily reheat and eat again. Also, try cutting out frozen ready made meals and TV dinners like pizzas and other frozen organic foods. These can cost nearly double the price of regular frozen foods, and you wanted to go organic for the health benefits too, right?
My wife and I weren’t perfect when we first started buying organic foods. We started spending about $100 more per month on groceries, and we wrote this off as just the cost of eating better. However, we’ve slowly refined our strategy and started buying at various different vendors which has then allowed us to bring our grocery costs back down to about the same when we were just buying from the local, big supermarket. If you follow some of the tips mentioned in this article and work your own strategy when buying organic, you’ll find that you will start eating better at less cost.
What are your thoughts on going organic? Have you found any effective strategies for spending less while still being able to buy organic?

Erik Folgate is an editor and blogger for the Money Crashers personal finance blog. Visit the site for more guidance and tips on saving money, investing, credit and debt, and more.

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The goal of Regarding Nannies is to bring together a variety of professional nanny related blogs and resources that will assist in projecting a professional image of the nanny industry. As well as serving as an information source for all nanny/child related topics and resources to nannies regardless of where they are on the career ladder.

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