This is going to be my new, economical babysitting strategy.
A few weeks ago #1Hubby and I went out to dinner. We called on our go-to sitter (who works at the kids' before and after school care centre).
The kids nearly crapped themselves with delight in the lead up, more excited about having their beloved sitter come over for the night than they were about Christmas.
Not even kidding.
The night went well, we got home late, the babysitter had a quick chat and left.
I found a few craft items and doll decorations that she had clearly created with the kids. Where I would normally be all look it's a cartoon on TV! - she was all - how about we sit and do something together?
Bitch was showing me up.
And it worked.
The next morning, Miss5 was her usual dramatic and excitable self, showering me with kisses and love and saying how much she'd missed me the night before.
It was a beautiful, touching, mother daughter moment - until this....
Me: So you missed me, Miss5?
Miss5: Yep! *More squeezy cuddles and kisses*
Me: Did you have fun with "Babysitter"?
Miss5: Yep! So much!
Miss5: Hey Muuuum.....
Me: Yes baby?
Miss5: I wish "Babysitter" could be our Mum too.
Me: Say what?
Miss5: I wish that "Babysitter" could be our other Mum.
Nothing but the sound of oxygen rapidly expelling from my person, a lot like if I'd been PUNCHED IN THE STOMACH.
I am now in all kinds of turmoil.
This sitter is amazing. She's reliable, responsible, knows the kids, trustworthy - all things you want a babysitter to be.
And far more prone to participating in painful craft activities and role playing with the kids than I am.
I'm going to have to watch my back from now on.
Maybe stack the odds in my favour a little - leave her to dish up a broccoli and spinach filled vegetarian dinner.
Ask her to do double homework with the kids before bed.
Leave the toy room a disaster zone before she arrives, so that she can tyrant manage The Feral Threesome into cleaning it up.
Disconnect the wifi so Miss9 loses her shit.
Disconnect the cable TV box so all three of them lose their shit.
This is war.