Tuesday, May 24, 2011

utv babysitting tips

Maybe a little random, but I think the following post, despite its off-topicness to the purposes of this blog, deserves some attention.

It was a crazy busy day at work today.  Actually, it's 9:34 in the evening as I type this and I am still at work, despite the fact that I got here around 10:15 this morning.  My boss will be back in two days, so hopefully this insanity that I call my work life will not take up so many of my waking hours when he's finally back.  That's how much work there is to do!

I need a raise.  :)

Anyway, as I walked back into the office around 3 p.m. after running some errands for the bossman livin' it up in Hyderabad, India, I discovered that one of the lawyers who share our offices (and for whom I do some part-time "outside contractor" work) had a few tiny visitors the ages of 7, 5, and 2 years.  The lawyer's wife was going to the spa with one of the legal secretaries, a long-time family friend, and had dropped off the entire clan (sans the three-month old baby) for some "quality time" with daddy.

Well, daddy was really busy, as yours truly can attest to.  I was working on property assessment letters to potential clients and he was sending myself and three interns in every direction with tasks and corrections to paperwork.  What he couldn't contend with, however, was three hyperactive kids.  He was telling them to settle down  while answering phone calls from clients and attending to paperwork.

Having grown up in a family with four daughters, I recall similar experiences with my mother dropping the three eldest, my oldest sister, my twin sister and I, at my dad's physical therapy clinic while she took the youngest with her on various errands or day's out with friends.  What did my father do as a busy physical therapist with patients to attend to?  He made an underling take us to an out-of-the-way back room to color in coloring books and watch Disney movies.

The kids were distracting me, and this lawyer wasn't cruel enough to designate an underling as an intern.  So I asked the kids if they wanted to color pictures for daddy, and then Googled coloring book pages inspired by superheros and Disney princesses.

Within five minutes the kids were quietly occupied making pictures for daddy and mommy, and the office was at peace.  Despite the fact that they periodically interrupted my print jobs when they needed more pictures to color in, and the youngest of the clan wanted to eat half of my lunch (which was eaten three hours after my normal lunch break) I  managed to get the kids out of everyone's hair and keep them busy.

I am not a huge fan of kids, but I do know what they like.  So if you need some babysitting ideas, consider just getting them a few coloring books and a box of crayons.  Even if it means that the 2-year-old will just color the entire Batman picture in red crayon, at least it will get him to sit still for five minutes while you continue your work.

image source: Coloring Children's Consumption

image source: Disney Coloring Pages

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