Nanny Files: Shortlets One: Girl’s Books

Girl just very adamantly told me “They (her cousins) should read these books. They’re vbold good books!” 

This is the same child who, eleven months ago, was stomping and grumbling andin a rage because I was making her pick out a book to read at bookstore for her schoolwork. Now, she is a very particular child because she has autism. So it is only these Warrior cats graphic novels that she’ll willingly want to read. But it’s a start. I will only read them out loud with her once before they become strictly twice a week silent reading books. Because otherwise we would never read any actual chapter books.I’m just glad she had a favorite type of book now, whbefore ore it was like pulling teeth to get her to read. I am proud oF her. 

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Sir Double Kissy Noise, Surveillance Expert

Sir Double Kissy Noise, King of the Fridge has claimed the lower portion of the most trusted human’s sleeping place. He deems this necessary as she is still the key to getting into the Land Below House. He has also deemed it quite necessary, though however appalling it may be, to make himself appear as adorable to The Human as much as possible. Sleeping in positions The Human finds strange, such ass on his back with his paws up, or rotated at an awkward angle in which his feet are at all different directions. Sir Double Kissy Noise has also taken to the act of grooming himself in The Human’s presence so as to make himself appear neat and more handsome to the eye, as well as being what The Human adoringly refers to as ‘fluffy’. The Human seems to like this ‘fluffy’ state of his coat and he is not one to argue since it brings him closer to his most secret and needed goal of finding out the password for the door to the Land Below House.

Even with The Human present, Sir double Kissy Noise has taken to trying and weedle the password out of some of The Human’s most trusted friends, namely, the funny pink one and the round white one. He has heard them referred to on occasion as an octopus and a unicorn. As neither of these creatures actually exists, he believes this to be a clever ploy in covering up their true identities. Neither has given way to Sir Double Kissy Noise’s torturous ways of using his claw to try and get information out of them. He suspects perhaps they are mute or just really strong and good at keeping secrets. 

Night time surveillance of The Human must continue as planned, despite her closing the door to her chamber during the dark hours now. Sir Double Kissy Noise has made it his goal to get into The Human’s chamber before the door is closed, or else, demand to be allowed in. The Human seems to find these demands adorable and typically responds in garbled cat speak back. As she obviously does not know what she is saying, Sir Double Kissy Noise has let the rude words she has stated in cat speak pass.

And though he is simply there, in The Human’s chamber, to perform surveillance, he sometimes forgets to keep his guard up and falls asleep. The Human does not harm him, nor does he feel she will. She has not attacked his exposed belly except with soft strokes, nor has she tried to tear off his head or tail in the middle of the dark times. And the gentle pettings upon his head, neck, and throat are actually (shamefully) lovely feeling.  Sir Double Kissy Noise knows he should not let his guard down so, but sometimes… the sleeping area is so comfy and The Human so warm… He cannot help himself. He is soft hearted, though, don’t get complacent, he’s still a fierce warrior as ever. And he can do plenty of surveillance in the light hours… when he’s not taking a much deserved little nap in the sun.

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Oh kids

“…and give those Mudbloods a lick for me.”

…sometimes when kids read too fast… I’m still laughing in my head and picturing petrified students being licked. 

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Nanny Files: 5: Not My Best Moment

So today Girl was being kind of a little brat. Whether I felt she was being bratty due to my having a horrid headache, or because she just gets that way something we will never known for sure, but I feel like it was probably a combination of the two. The day was going well, simple but slow going in general. Schoolwork, video games, we went out for a bit, the usual. We got boy from school, and when we got back, I tripped on mister hard ouchie dinosaur for the third time that day. And this is NOT a small dinosaur. Well, it is, but it’s weighted and heavy as hell compared to most rubber or plastic dinosaurs.

Already being in headache mode, I told Girl she needed to pick up her toys and put them away, a simple request since they were on the living room floor. Now, no, they were not exactly in the way, just that one damned dino I kept tripping over, but when I get in headache mode, I get a little less patient than normal.

Girl: “Why?”

Me: “Because they’re a mess and you’re not playing with them.”

Girl: “I’m gonna play with them later!”

Ah, the logic of a kid. Oh my goodness, I’m going to play with it in maybe six to twelve hours from now, I can’t put it away!

Me: “Are you going to play with them within the next hour?”

Girl “…”

Me: ‘If not then they need to be picked up.”

Girl: “But they’re not in the way.”

Me: “I’ve tripped over that one three times today. If you’re not playing with them within the next hour, you need to put them away.”

So, she picks them up and puts them in a box… and leaves them there.

Me: “Put them in your room where they belong, please.”

Girl: “Why?”

Me: “Because toys don’t belong in the living room when they’re not being played with.”

Girl: “Not all toys.”

To which she is probably referring to the toys that actually live in the living room in their respective buckets or corner. I like to refer to these as Boy toys, which are there mostly because if all of his toys were in his room, we would never see him and are actually not taking up any floor space that anyone needs to walk upon. They are neatly organized up against one corner, a play corner, if you will. Play corners and the middle of the floor are two totally different concepts.

Me: “Yes, but those are living room toys. Your dinosaurs belong in your room unless you’re playing with them.”

And then she just sat there. Playing with her cat. Refusing outright to do as she’s told simply because she doesn’t want to put them away even though it is highly unlikely she will even touch them again until tomorrow.

Me: “Well, screens are staying off until they’re put away.”

Girl pondered this over. She was really into her video game before we got Boy. (Don’t worry, we do other things as well, today was just one of those video game days. Tomorrow it may well be running around as horses, who knows.) It took a bit, but with grumbling and stomping, she lifted up the box. Dinos fell out because there were too many.

G: “This is WHY I don’t want to pick them up!”

M: “So make two trips.”

G:” Blah blah blah blah blah!”

M: “Blah blah your face, just do it.” (Immature of me, I know. I am ashamed of saying this, but at this point, I’d lost all my patience. I was tired. I had a migraine. And I’d just found out I need to work over the weekend as well. That’s eight days without a day off unless otherwise stated before the weekend. Eighty eight hours. That‘s about eleven work days for a regular job mashed into just over a week. I‘d have said no, but then I‘d look like an asshole.)

G: “Talk to the hand!” Stomp stomp, grumble grumble. She returns for the second trip. “S-H-I-T!”

M: “Oooo, keep that up, you’ll go straight into the corner young lady!”

I regret not putting her right in the corner then because she was out of line. Sure, she just spelt it, but we’ve discussed before that it’s not okay. That is a word for adults, not young ladies. She should have gone to the corner. Alas, I didn’t react fast enough to it in a logical manner.

Of course, half an hour later everything was fine and dandy again and the pain killers kicked in to sort of work on ebbing away that headache of mine, though it still lingers as does the urge to duct tape Girl to the wall inside of a closet, but I’d never do that. I love her too much, but still… don’t say you’ve never thought about it when your kids are being brats!

Actually, just put a sign up in the corner ’Nanny Time Out’ and set the microwave timer for maybe half an hour (A little extra time.). Then everyone’s happy.

Hell, I even pondered spiking my chocolate milk (after work at home) with vodka. And I don’t drink. But maybe I should start! Naw. >.< I’m crazy enough sober.

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Nanny Files: 4: Antics

Children are fairly unpredictable beings until you get to know them pretty well, but then there are still those moments when you have no idea what they’re about to do or what they’re going to say. They grow and change so rapidly sometimes that it’s sometimes nearly impossible to keep up with them, but you do your best and persevere with only bits of bruised ego on either side. However, sometimes things are so predictable, you just sigh knowing what’s about to come out of their mouth.

The other day Girl was just chilling out, playing a game where she was making magic potions that did neat things. I was sitting near her station of play to be involved in the game sporadically, which is how she liked this specific game to go. So she gets up and gets herself some water from he fridge, puts the bottle back away, and then comes back to sit at her playing area. Then, she looks me dead in the eye and states “Can you get me a cup please?”

This child was literally a foot from the cupboard with the cups in it not ten seconds ago. So of course the answer is “No, you can get your own cup if you want one.”

Now, I could have been nice and gotten her a cup without a battle, but see, one of the things about Girl that actually bugs me, is the fact that she is perfectly capable of doing things for herself but mainly expects other people to do them for her simply because she’s a kid. Heating up food in the microwave or toaster oven, filling her own water bottle when it’s empty, cleaning up her messes… these are all things she just doesn’t even think about doing because they’ve always just been done for her without a single question about it. But not with this nanny, no ma’am.

So our conversation continued as such.

“Why? I said please.”

“Yes, and I appreciate your politeness, but you were just over there and are perfectly big enough to get your own cup if you want one.”

“You’re just being lazy.”

This is the part where I failed to stifle a snort. Me? Lazy? Yes, I will admit to having my moments, but who is the one running around playing games with you, kid? Who’s the one cooking for you and your brother? Who makes sure you’re wearing the appropriate clothing for outside, makes you do your schoolwork and helps you with it even when you’re being a piss-moan? Who makes sure you’ve brush your hair, teeth, bathed recently, and wakes you up in the morning? I could have gotten her the cup, but that would just be reinforcing the idea of people doing for her things she can do for herself.

“No girl, I’m not being lazy. Being lazy means I’m not doing something I need to do. I don’t need to get you a cup because you are way big enough to get your own cup.”

Huff, puff, stomp, stomp, clatter, success. Girl got her own cup. Nanny gains another forwards step towards instilling a sense of independence in this kid. Everyone wins even if they don’t realize it.

Now, onto Boy. Boy and I have been clicking better than ever lately. He’s gotten much more used to my being a reliable, familiar, and constant (on the days I work) presence in his life. I’ve formed myself to be someone predictable for him because he thrives on familiarity. He knows how I will wake him up, help him wash his hands after using the bathroom, help him pick appropriate clothing for the day, get him from school with hugs, and always be available for getting apple juice when requested, though sometimes he will be required to help with the getting the juice and cup and pouring. Life skills!

Boy knows that if I say ‘Uh-oh!’ he’s about to be tickled. He knows that I will hide behind the door and play a game of ‘I see you! You can’t see me!’ peek-a-boo until I rush in to tickle him or run away where he chases after me and then jump out of the bathroom at him with a ‘Boo! Got you!’. He knows he has to say the ending ‘Down’ to Ring-Around-the-Rosy if he wants me to drop him onto the bed after rocking and cradling him. He knows that if he tells me to ‘Please leave,.’ I will most likely require a hug from him before I do so.

So, the other day, we were goofing around as per usual and he went to the bathroom. Then we washed his hands and I told him to give me a hug. Well, he gave me a full on hug instead of a usual simple hug and run. He clambered right on up and I held him and hugged him and he laughed because he loves to be hugged. Then he started squirming a bit cause he was slipping and he tried to get back up. So I readjusted my hold. Then he proceeded to hump me. He got in two full humps before I noticed and down he went, hug done. I flicked his hair back from his face and off he went, skipping down the hallway to the other room to play.

Now, did he know better? Absolutely not. He’s a kid and autistic to the point where he‘s ten and still finds versions of peek-a-boo thrilling. He does what feels good without even thinking about it. He knows nothing of romantic relationships or sex. It’s actually quite normal for young kids to do these types of things without finding any meaning behind it other than it feels nice. That rocking horse your two year old daughter loves to ride constantly? There’s a reason why she loves to play on it so much. 

Was I slightly taken aback by his sudden humping? Of course, he’s never done it before. Did it bug me? Only a little bit, but that’s only because I’m an adult with knowledge of sex, not an oblivious child. I’m sure we all used to do similar things when we were but wee sprouts without realizing what we were doing. Hell, most of us do it now knowing what we’re doing.

I’ll still give Boy koala-bear style hugs, just less often. >.< 

 

 

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“When you’re do…

“When you’re done turning your feather into a magic wand, I want you to sit down and eat your lunch.”

Girl has decided we are magic dog dragons today and we are making magic wands out of any long thin object by enchanting them with a special potion. The potion is easy to make. All you need are plant tiles (aka apples to apples dice chips) and letter tiles that spell out ‘Magic’, make sure your M is capital! 

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Sir Double Kissy Noise, The Shaninegans Continue

Sir Double Kissy Noise has abandoned his rule upon the land from his Castle de Oven that has been taken over by the Evil Boxes which contain dry human food. Instead, he has foa new castle from which to rule, and this one, he thinks, is even better than the last. He is now Sir Double Kissy Noise, King of the Fridge. From upon his new throne he can look down upon all of his subjects with ease. His castle is protected due to it having a sheer cliff face and large mountains on two of it’s sides. Occasionally a random human object infiltrates the castle, but these are easily dealt with and typically harmless. The castle also protects against unwanted eyes, for he can hide against the corner of the mountains and remain completely unseen to those below the castle’s peak.

The castle was discovered by Sir Double Kissy Noise’s most trusted comrade, Fridge Jumper, Warrior and Protector of the Land of House. She scaled up to it with a great flying leap from the Great Washer Dryer Plateau and deemed it the perfect new place for the castle. She and Sir Double Kissy Noise have taken a liking to sitting on the edge of the castle and staring downwards at passing peasants. The peasants do not always see them right away and are sometimes startled by their sudden appearance, living in fear that one day their ruler and his comrade shall decide that a peasant’s head would be a lovely landing pad.

Unfortunately, Sir Double Kissy Noise and Fridge Jumper cannot protect the castle at all times, for they must frequent to the outer reaches of the Land of House in order to survive. Food must be eaten. Dogs, humans, and other cats must be tormented. Luckily, the Land of House has many comfortable places to rest during these long, tiresome journeys. Any and all caves must be investigated in case they hold treasure and the secret password that opens the entrance to the Land of Below House (the most sacred and most treasure filled part of Land of House) still needs weaseling out of the humans who are the only beings in the Land of House who know it. Sir Double Kissy Noise is making this his goal during his night travels, trying to get it out of the most trustworthy human. So far he has tried the cute and cuddly approach (disgraceful!) and has also added in the Stare Until They Talk technique. This involves getting the human in question into a state of relaxation so content that they fall into the limbo of Sleepland and the World of the Aware. This is the best time to use the Stare Until They Talk technique as it is proven to cause tingles to run up the human’s spine, cause them to jump, and usually shout out a random word that may or may not be the password to the secret entrance to the Land of Below House. When using this technique it is best to loom over the human by sitting on a nearby object or on top of their chest so that when they feel your yellow eyes penetrating into their brain and wake, they will be more startled at your proximity to their face and be more likely to say the password. However, if they do wake and talk, it is best to go back into the cute and cuddly technique as this seems to sooth them and make them feel less like you’re plotting their murder. Sir Double Kissy Noise has perfected this technique without fault. However he has yet to get the correct password out of the human, though he can now access her bright box that most likely holds all of the answers to the Land of Below House. He and Fridge Jumper take turns sitting on the button pad that controls the light box hoping they will eventually achieve the correct sequence of buttons pressed. The human seems to be oblivious to this action and torn between finding it cute and anno,./’./”./l’;l;’;[/

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Nanny File: Episode 3: Shit Happens

As anyone who deals with kids will tell you, there are the good days, the bad days, the half-n-half days, and lastly, the days from hell in which you just want to pull out your own hair, duct tape children to chairs, and veg out on Reese’s cups while reading smutty books and watching any channel that does not contain singing animals or teeny bopper shenanigans. I like to refer to these days as ‘I don’t drink, but spike my coffee with something strong, bartender’ days.

Thankfully, I have not had to deal with surviving one of these days in a while, so I’m over due. I’m hoping today is not the day (yeah, I’m writing this at work. Don’t give me that look. Boy is at school and Girl is doing her morning routine which takes at least half an hour. And no, I‘m not writing this on their computer, I‘m not crazy!) that things get out of control, but its boding to already.

You see, this morning began after a bad, short night’s sleep when Sir Double Kissy Noise, King of the Oven’s sister (I forget if we’ve named her yet. Her real name is Molly, but we’ll refer to her as Fridge Jumper, Warrior and Protector of the Land of House) pounced on me. Add in a nose that won’t work due to allergies and you have the beginning batter of a shitty day cake. Lets hope that the cake never makes it into the oven and that I will have a nice day to share with you. Now let’s talk shit.

When working with kids boldly fluids are a given. This morning I came to work and everything went smooth. Boy was already up and ready to get off to school so there wasn’t much to do for him except pack his bag and make sure his shirt had long sleeves. So off he went to learn and be a super awesome little BAMF.

I did the usual of getting Girl’s clothes into the bathroom upstairs for her so she could get dressed when I woke her and then… Something rancid hit my nose.

At first I thought it was the kitty box, because kitty boxes can get pretty stanky, that would have been an easy fix of just cleaning the box (No big deal, I have cats too!) as well as closing the door and spraying some yummy smelling stuff. But was it? Alas, no, it was not. To my horror, I located the source of the smell after I stepped into the bathroom to get a closer look at the kitty box.

My socks are now in a plastic baggy in my back pack. Thank Merlin for slippers.

The source of the stench was a line of shit making its way from the bathroom and down the hallway. I would just like to say, thank fucking thanks to whomever decided this house needed wood floors instead of carpet! I disinfected the crap out of that crap and then mopped the entire area in which the poopie may have spread. I will never know if it came from a cat or a male child, (more likely the former) but either way it was pretty gross.

This is only one of my shit stories, the other… Is much more horrific.

I got to work at the beginning of fall, school started but still pretty hot outside. The Parental Units warned me that Boy had decided to make a mess in the bathroom (hey, he’s autistic, it happens.) and that it had been cleaned as much as possible between when it happened and having to get ready for work. Okay, no big deal. They’d been up since five scrubbing and scrubbing, at least The Mother Unit had.

Have you ever seen walls speckled with dried diarrhea like a Jackson Pollock painting? I have.

Obviously I wasn’t going to leave it there. That would be unsanitary and honestly, I didn’t want to have to smell it whenever I had to pee. So I rolled up my sleeves, grabbed the fullest, best bleach spray I could find (something that wouldn’t hurt the walls), a roll of paper towels, and a couple tablespoons of courage.

It stank but it wasn’t that bad. Cleaning had been done or it would have been a lot worse. They hadn’t asked me to do it either. But I figured, well, I’m here and it won’t kill me. Here’s hoping it never happens again in a time frame in which I have to see it. Needless to say, when I’m around and Boy is in the bathroom, that door stays cracked and there is a time limit on how long he can be in there without me checking on him.

Good news. I am halfway through the day now and it’s turning out to be a pretty mellow day. Girl is doing well with her schoolwork with very little complaining which means I don’t get frustrated with her (not that I show my frustration, that would just frustrate her). She shall not be gagged and duct taped to the inside wall of the downstairs closet.

We had a rousing game of the Apples to Apples Dice Game we like which is always fun and silly. We lost it when she chose the adjective ‘tastey’ and my noun was babies and the lion’s (you need three players) noun was rabbit. See, I don’t know her word until after she chooses which noun goes best with it and it gets a little crazy. I have hit the stage four of the tired chart, having been up way too early on way too little sleep. Girl understands the stages now as I explained them to her. The first is sleepy, the second is tired, the third is super mega tired, the fourth is the adrenaline kick that causes silliness and craziness, and the fifth is when you are dead to the world.

I have already made the lion talk in my ear and pretended its saying rude things (*gasp!* Lion! That’s not very nice!) and then I sang to it. I have also pretended to be a fish flopping upon the ground dying. It’s a good thing Girl finds my hitting stage four hilarious. She is now practicing her cursive letters as I found out she hasn’t done them ever before and it’s just a skill for signing her signature later in life, but its a nice one to have. She is now explaining to me what each letter looks like and asking if the little a is supposed to look like it has hair and the little p looks like a girl reaching for something. She is very bright and imaginative and having fun copying the letters down which is good because otherwise it would be very boring for her which leads to groaning (outwardly by her, inwardly by me).

I believe we are due for a rousing game of UNO when she finishes, in which we are evenly matched. I love playing UNO with Girl because its good for her to win and gain that pride, but its also great for her to lose. If she gets grumpy about losing, I remind her that I don’t play with kids who get angry about the game. This usually softens her up and she calms down right quick and is slower to anger about losing the next time we play. One time we had a UNO game that went for a full hour and a half, it was epic, but we haven’t played since as there is only so much you can take.

And now, a little bit of cute for you.

A few weeks or so ago, Boy had had a rough night sleeping and so, once we got back from getting him from school he basically conked out in his favorite chair in the living room. So I let him have a little nap, not too long. I tried to wake him up after about half an hour. No go. He was too groggy and just curled right back up in the chair. We repeated this process over the course of the next hour or so, me trying to get him up and him just being glued to the chair. So, eventually, I decided to test exactly how sleepy he was. Because sometimes he’s just being lazy and it takes a while to get him out of the chair and playing. So, I put my hat on his head. If he wasn’t too tired to get up, he would have taken one look at it and chucked it off because he doesn’t like things that aren’t familiar or his. But he didn’t. He looked at the strings with half open eyes and passed back out. So then I had a little boy fast asleep, curled up as little as he could get in a big poofy chair (think cat) with a winter hat on his head. This wasn’t just any winter hat though, oh no. See, my winter hat is a bunny with a face and floppy ears.

This is the part where you go ‘d’aw!’.

So I left it on him for about ten adorable minutes before I removed it, covered him with a blanket, and completely surrendered to a nice long nap time that would possibly screw up his sleeping later. But hey, he was tiiiired! Who am I to deprive a sweet little boy of a nap when he needs one so badly? I’m pretty sure it was a Friday anyway.

Oh, and thank you for the lovely comments, to those of you that did. I do appreciate and enjoy them. 

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Nanny File: Episode 2

Today I was so proud of Girl. Sometimes the things she says and does astound me and make me wonder when she became so grown-up. We got up to our usual hi-jinks, just another typical day on the job. We had a discussion about how being stubborn (and she is) and being an outright Demanding Bossy Boots are different. Yes, sometimes they go together (like today), but it’s better to be stubborn when you’re trying to succeed at something good, instead of being stubborn because someone won’t do what you want when you’re being bossy. I put the game controller right down on the floor, explained that being bossy was not nice and I would not play with her if she was going to be bossy. I waited for her to steam that bossiness out of her system and to rethink her words on how to go about things better. It took a few minutes, but then she worked out a nice, polite way of asking instead of being bossy. The fun continued and she wasn’t bossy for the rest of playtime. I didn’t have to give her an example of the proper way to ask, she did it on her own in a very grown-up manner.

When we were out today (because staying in all day would suck), we passed by some people smoking. Now, we’ve discussed smoking and cigarettes for some of her schoolwork. When we’d gotten a good distance away, she asked me when cigarettes were going to go away. I explained to her, that unfortunately, they probably never will because in order for that to happen they would either have to be outlawed, which wouldn’t go over well at all and people would commit crimes by finding ways to get them or people would have to stop starting smoking.

Girl: ‘Well, why don’t they just sell them to the people who already smoke and ask if they already smoke and not sell them to people who want to start?’
Me: ‘Unfortunately it’s not that simple. People could easily lie, and even then most of the time, when people start smoking, it’s probably not from their own pack of cigarettes, but from a friend who has been asked for one or offered them one. That’s usually how teenagers start smoking.’
Girl: ‘I think the two dumbest types of people are babies and teenagers.’
Me: ‘Well, no. Babies haven’t had to chance to really learn anything yet, so they’re not dumb. In order to be dumb, you have to have had a chance to learn the difference of choosing between right and wrong. Usually by the time you’re a teenager you know how to do that and make dumb choices. Not all teenagers are dumb or make dumb choices, though, just some of them and they’re usually driven to do so by their friends who are doing dumb things. Which is why I’m glad you’re home schooled, you‘ll probably be a good teenager.’ (Here’s hoping! She’s already a great kid, let’s pray she stays that way!)
Girl: ‘I will, because I won’t do dumb things.’

Then a little bit later we were playing nicely with Boy and she mentioned that my hair was an absolute mess. I explained that yes, it was quite a poofy mess today as I’d lost my brush this morning (and it’s just plain wild anyway). She left and came back with her brush and began brushing out her own hair. Now this… is something new.

Previously this is the child who wanted her hair brushed for her and would go days with it in a tangle if she could. But ever since we started her hygiene chart and she’s been required to brush it every morning that I’m there, she’s been doing much better at doing it herself.

Me: ‘Girl, you already brushed your hair today, didn’t you?” Because I could have sworn it had been neat that morning when she came out of the bathroom.
Girl: “Yeah, but I like it when it’s straight and shiny so I’m getting the knots out.”

I was astounded! I could have jumped for joy but I didn’t, that would embarrass her. So I just praised her good choice and told her that it was a good idea to keep her hair neat. I have hope now that she’ll be brushing it on her own accord on the days I’m not there as well. She’s getting much better at not needing reminding already.

Some time passed and we hit five thirty. Somewhere between the hours of four and five, I hit that Lag of Death in energy where my brain feels like it’s fried, so I usually end up watching her play (promoting independence!) and checking on Boy every ten minutes or so to make sure he’s getting plenty of interaction and attention (he’d play by himself for hours on end if I let him, which I don’t as that would be detrimental to his social skills). I went strong today, I didn’t hit the Lag of Death until 5:12!

Five-thirty arrives, I’m in the Lag of Death, but Girl still wants me to play with her. We’ve already hit hour nine of nearly 100% interaction. Nine hours where the only single moment of peace is when one of us is in the bathroom. And even then, 90% of the time there is talking through the door.

Me: ‘Girl, I would love to but I don’t think I’d be very fun or play well right now as half of my brain seems to be taking a nap.’ Because I really do love playing with her, and I’m not trying to get out of it (ok maybe I am, but don’t you dare say you never tried something like that with your kids. That would be lying.)
Girl: ‘Okay.’ And she continues playing for a few more minutes and the gears in her head seem to be turning, as usual. She’s very imaginative, you know. Then she looks at me. ‘You know, it doesn’t matter if you play very well at all, just that you play.”

Normally she gets pissy if I don’t play well, but she stopped, recognized my lack in brain power, and realized that she would still rather play together even if I was utter crap at it. For her, that takes a bit of work as she’s twelve and is still working on bettering her social skills, which is made a bit more difficult for her than it is for other kids because of her autism.

And of course, because she’s right, I join her in her game where she was 100% respectful of my total and utter crappy ability of playing. What a kid!

Boy was in a good mood today too. He put up all of his outdoor clothes and backpack where they’re supposed to go without anyone telling him to. He ate his afternoon snack without any fuss (because sometimes it’s hard to get him to eat) and was all smiles and tickles when the Parental Units returned. He loves playing and being tickled, but he also gets overwhelmed from too much interaction so I span it out over the course of time, respecting his wishes if he asks me to ‘Please leave.’ He’s pretty easy to please though, as, even though he’s ten, he still find games that make toddlers laugh hysterical (he‘s actually just an easily amused, but very smart kid). We played some very rousing games of Where’d He Go? (Huh, I thought there was a Boy in here, but I only see a blanket!), Stinky Feet (although most boys would find it amusing to stick their feet in your face), Woosh (blanket flies up and falls back down ‘WOOSH!’), and of course, our favorite game, Tickle Monster, which also involves his hair being ‘eaten‘. There is nothing better than him laughing with a big smile and sparkling eyes and knowing he‘s happy. Except his koala bear style hugs.

I love my job.

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The Nanny File: Episode 1

Yes, I am, proudly, a nanny. This is my first job nannying, having previously only worked in a big box store that we shall simply refer to as ‘The Evil Beast’. I do love my job and the kids I look after (and when I refer to my kids, I’m referring to the kids I look after, as I do not have any actual children of my own yet), but sometimes it can get a little crazy.

My kids are great, wonderful beings made of utter awesome, especially when they’re in good moods, but then there are the not so good moods when Happy-Fun-Time Nanny turns into Sit-Your-Butt-Down-And-Do-As-As-You-Are-Told Nanny.

My boy is typically well behaved, mostly silent and content in the world so long as he has his favorite toys and plenty of tickles. He’s autistic but high functioning and probably one of the sweetest kids I’ve ever had to pleasure of meeting. And I get to look after him? Woohoo! We have our struggle moments, like any adult and child, but we always get through it.

My girl is also typically well behaved, though she’s more of a spitfire when she wants to be. Since Boy goes to school during the day, I spend most of my time with Girl, playing and home schooling her and preparing her for the future. This isn’t always as easy as working with her brother, as he’s pretty straight forward in what he wants, and she is more straight forward about what she doesn’t want. No new things, no change, constant familiarity. She has Aspergers.

Whenever something new and unwelcome in her eyes is introduced, it is a battle that sounds a little like this.

“I don’t think that’s a very good idea.’
‘Well, you need to do it. It’s part of growing up/your schoolwork/something your mom wants you to do today…ect.’

“Well, I don’t like it!”

“That’s too bad, it still needs to be done, whether you like it or not.’

And then there’s the typical twelve year old huffing and puffing and stomping away to do as she’s told, because frankly, whatever it is I’m telling her to do is for her own good. Sometimes the battle goes on longer and more intensely, but I always win out in the end.

A little while ago, I tired of these battles, which mostly occurred when it came to hygiene type things, as she has hit that stage of puberty where it really needs to be addressed. So I stopped and I thought about what I could do to help make it easier on the both of us to sort of integrate these new things into her life without so much hubbub about it all.

Children on the autism scale thrive on familiarity and scheduling, they like to know what’s going to happen beforehand on this day or that the day will be the same as it was yesterday by doing the same types of things at the same time each and every day or on a certain day of the week. This may or may not be true for all autistic children, but I do know it is common and is true of mine.

So I did what I did at the beginning of the school year to track when we do schoolwork and when we have playtime. I created a schedule, or a chart of sorts, to show her what she had to do regarding hygienic practices on each day of the week that I am in the house (as her parents are unlikely to put their feet down and discipline). For every item on her chart that gets done without argument, she earns a point. When she reaches a total of a hundred points, she earns a special treat. We don’t do this with her schoolwork, just with the new bathroom routine. If she argues, she loses half a point. If she continues to argue, no point. And if she outright refuses, for every five minutes that goes by without her in that bathroom doing as she’s told, she loses another point.

We’ve been at it for about five weeks now. And Girl only has ONE half point on her chart out of all the full points she’s earned. That means, there has only been one argument since I implemented the chart in the five weeks that we’ve been using it as opposed to a battle almost every single day.

Can you say booyah!?

I think I always want to be a nanny, hopefully, or run my own home based child care someday. I’ve known since I was fourteen that I wanted to look after kids, to help them grow, and teach them new things. I am currently nearly done with getting my ECE associate’s degree and if I’m lucky, I’ll get to keep doing what I love doing.

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