Tried and tested: Babies and Beyond babysitting servicesMarch 28, 2016
I first heard about Babies and Beyond through my day job, and remember thinking ‘Great idea, but it doesn’t really apply to me’. With fantastic live-in help in the form of Loreta, and a job that now allows me to work from home, we have thankfully never needed extra babysitting. Then Loreta went on leave for a month.
Of course, her departure was perfectly timed with 14-month-old Phoebe getting a fever, throat infection and being generally pale and floppy, and me being on a massive deadline, as well as getting an extra bit of freelance work that I couldn’t turn down.
Thankfully my in-laws were on hand to take over, but after almost a week of dealing with a grumpy toddler who wanted to be cuddled, then put on the floor, then have a walk, then play in the dog’s bed, they were overdue some relaxing time on the beach.
When Phoebe was feeling better, it just took a quick email to Babies and Beyond we had booked a day of babysitting, from 8.30am to 4.30pm, meaning I could be there to introduce their trained expert around before ducking off to work, and the in-laws could get some sunshine, potter around the house, nap and generally not worry about the sprog.
About Babies and Beyond
Babies and Beyond is a DHA licensed home healthcare facility providing maternity and childcare services by professionally licensed and qualified European workforce, that includes maternity nurses, midwives, health visitors, lactation consultants, sleep consultants and public health professionals. They even have a specialist early years educator, who works alongside childcare nurses to deliver a fun curriculum for older babies and toddlers at home. Juvy arrived bang on time, all smiles in a smart uniform, and Phoebe took to her straight away, playing and reading stories while I discreetly watched on from the other side of the room (then had to get closer and take a few pics!). She even fell asleep in Juvy’s arms within an hour.
How it works
Email or call to book a specific time slot or series of appointments (it’s Dhs75 per hour and custom packages can be worked out depending on what you need) and you’ll be matched with the best possible carer. Juvy was brilliant with this age group, and we’d happily have her look after Phoebe again (eg so we can go to brunch one Friday).
After she arrived I showed her around the house, pointing out any favourite toys, foods and distraction techniques, while she asked questions about routine, any guidelines such as screentime, snacks and naps. Even things like ‘Is she a hot or cold baby?’ that I’d never thought of before.
I armed her with all the essential phone numbers, including our paediatrician, left lunch out to defrost, and nervously got into the car. Half an hour later Juvy messaged to say that Phoebe was still fast asleep. She then sent a couple of follow-up WhatsApps to let me know what she had eaten and at what time, when she was fighting sleep, and when she napped again, bang on schedule. I was never left wondering what was going on.
My in-laws had a lovely time at the beach (luckily just a five-minute walk from home, in case Juvy needed anything) and she handed over at 4.30pm, with Phoebe thoroughly happy after a day of playing and singing.
While this isn’t a cheap solution to childcare, frankly these things shouldn’t be. The fact I knew Juvy was trained in first aid was hugely reassuring, and I really appreciated all the updates on what was already a stressful day. Above all, it’s great to know that this service exists, and we would definitely use it again – they also offer post-natal visits and maternity care for newborns, which would be extremely helpful for any new mums returning home from hospital without much support, plus workshops in everything from hypnobirthing to toddler calm. They might be hearing from me on that front…