Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Nanny Diaries

I know that from time to time, people wonder why the heck Tom and I live way down in Honduras. Aside from the 75 and sunny November days, there are some other major advantages for us to live here.

Throughout my life, I've experienced many different aspects of childcare. When I was growing up my mom took care of a couple neighbor kids in our home for awhile, and she later went on to license daycare homes in MN. Dinner topics could include the number of fire extinguishers in a house, or the quality of craft activities one home would provide for its charges. I did my fair share of babysitting as a teen (after reading 150 Babysitters Club books). For a year and half while I was in grad school, I worked as a nanny for two girls in a family's home. I've become sort of an expert on appropriate activities, healthy snacks, and required tasks of childcare.

The diaper is about to be on the other butt cheek now that I'm about to become a mother. Recently, a friend back home wrote to me about the challenge of finding a daycare home that met her needs. It turns out that it can be difficult to find someone with whom you can trust your child for several hours a day. In addition to that, a mother can only hope that their caregiver will instill the same values (and good grammar!) that they would receive at home. In the past few weeks, I've begun to think carefully about who will care for our little guy when I return to work.

I pulled the table below from the Minnesota Child Care Resources website.

Average Weekly Cost of Child Care

Below are some average ranges of weekly child care costs in Minnesota as of June 2008. Rates for part-time and drop-in care may be higher than those listed below.



Child Care













I assume that this is pretty accurate and I know that the going rate for an in-home nanny is upwards of $400 per week. For the past few months, I've been researching child care options here in La Ceiba. While there are a few private centers in the area, the most common form of childcare is an in-home nanny. Many live in the home (or in small rooms attached/outside the home.) Others come only during the daytime. The average salary for a full-time nanny (not live-in) is about $25 per week/$100 per month. Yes- that's right. It's the going rate around here! A huge savings for a young couple on a budget!

We intend to find the best nanny in La Ceiba, and pay her an above-average salary to meet our above-average expectations. We've already interviewed (in Spanish) a woman that we've known for awhile from La Ceiba. She's a warm, caring, 50 something woman who would love to care for our little baby. If all goes as expected, I think she'll do a great job.

So that's one reason we like living here in Honduras. Ideally, I'd love to be able to stay home with our baby. Since that is not our plan for now, the second best option for us is having two income-earning parents and a loving nanny to care for our baby in the home. Anyone else want to move to Honduras???


Kristin and Peter said...

I'm packing my bag right now...!

Anonymous said...

I'm sold! Let me just tell Kevin and find a renter for the house...


Anonymous said...

Hi Karine,
I know this is an old post, however, I would like to know how has child care worked out for you?
We live in the bay area and are considering a nanny,maybe, for our 11month old baby girl but it is sooo expensive ($15-$20/hr). I have family in SPS and lived there a few years while in highschool. The thought of moving to Honduras has crossed my mind....