A Friend for Zoe and Friends for Mommy

A couple of months ago Chris was doing some handyman work at a house on our street. The owner had gotten his number from a neighbor and the couple living there needed some work done. It was around the time I was pulling my hair out because Zoe was having lots of trouble sleeping at night and napping during the day and I was feeling pretty awful. My mom was helping out with babysitting pretty frequently (seriously, how awesome is it that my mom babysits once a week for me? Us daughters don't thank our moms enough - THANKS MOM!), but I was still getting nothing done. Enter perfectly timed handyman job.

While Chris was working he got to talking to the couple who lived there and Andi was telling him how busy she was and how working from home was hard with her 8 month old. Chris mentioned that I was having the same problem and it was only a couple days later that I wandered over to meet her and her sweet daughter Sophi. You know how you just click with some people? That's how it was with Andi (I hope Andi feels the same way, otherwise, Andi, if you're reading this I promise I'm not a super creeper). We talked about our girls, our houses, our jobs, our lives....and then we remembered the whole point of our get together was to get some HELP. Luckily Andi knew the perfect person: a ballerina named Elizabeth (yes, literally ballerina).

A couple weeks later I headed back over to meet Elizabeth. Again, I was totally smitten (and again, Elizabeth, if you're reading this, I promise - not a creeper). I realize some people might really vet the people who watch their kids, but after talking with her for about 16 seconds, I was all for it - she was super sweet, funny and seemed like she was probably more responsible than me (afterall, the other day I let Zoe pull herself up onto a shaking table and dance around with an electrical cord around her feet).

And that is how Zoe started getting watched by this gorgeous lady

Elizabeth comes once a week (soon to be maybe two) and watches Zoe for about 90 minutes here at our house while I get work done. The first couple of times Zoe seemed a little confused by it ("I'm in my house, but my mom isn't watching me, this is strange.") But now when Elizabeth comes for the day Zoe gets a giant smile on her face and is ready to play.

After that first 90 minutes with just Elizabeth either Sophi comes over to our house or Zoe heads over there and Elizabeth watches both girls together for a couple more hours. And I must say, those two little babies together are fucking adorable

I confess, sometimes when they're all over at our house I come out from my office and watch them play. It's hilarious. Sophi is about 3 months older than Zoe and so it's really fun to watch Zoe try and keep up (Sophi is working on getting her walk on). They don't really understand how to "play," so much of their time is spent pulling each other's pacifiers out of each other's mouths. Or, you know, sitting on each other

Hilariously, when I picked up Zoe this day Elizabeth opened the door and laughed, "Don't be mad at me..." because there was a bow in her hair, lol! We all laughed that most people would say that if their kid had a bruise or something. 
It's fun for the girls to get to switch around which house they play at each time because someone else's toys are always more exciting than your own (no matter what age, right?) And I marvel at how Elizabeth is able to watch both girls for extended periods of time without pulling her hair out. Rarely do I hear them be fussy for any extended period of time (lately changing Zoe's diaper has been, well, challenging) and on occasion Andi or I have had an appointment or family visiting so we've needed to switch up hours or add more time and Elizabeth seems to enjoy it more. Though this does look pretty fun :)

I feel so thankful to have had someone really just fall into my lap who loves watching Zoe. I was nervous about looking into a nanny share because I was scared about how to look for someone or know that they would be a good fit, but really, I got so damn lucky - Zoe loves Elizabeth, Zoe loves playing with Sophi, I trust Elizabeth and I feel like I gained two new friends.

Two weekends ago Andi (who is also a dancer) and I drove into San Francisco to watch a dance performance of Elizabeth's. It was a wonderful mom's night out and I had so much fun driving to and from the city with Andi and sharing different stories about our families and our lives. And it was so awesome getting to see Elizabeth perform and see a part of who she really is. It made me think about how great it is that someone so different from me spends time with Zoe. Elizabeth has graceful strength. She is strong and thoughtful in ways I don't know or understand - but in the best way. She will influence and encourage Zoe in ways that are foreign to me and I am so thankful for that. I love all the strong women in Zoe's life that will set such different and great examples for her.

Frequently when I go pick Zoe up at the end of the day I find myself spending some time visiting with Andi. We laugh and let the girls play more

It's wonderful to have someone so close by (about a 32 second walk, literally) that Zoe can play with and that I like visiting with. A couple times when I've gone out with Zoe I've found myself talking to another parent who is out with their kid (that always just seems to happen) and I get annoyed that people feel compelled to talk to me just because they have a kid too. I realize that sounds incredible bitchy, but it seems like a strange phenomenon - brunettes don't just randomly walk up and start talking to each other. That night we were driving to SF we both laughed about how a mutual friend actually virtually introduced us many months prior, but neither of us felt compelled to respond to the email - we both thought, "Why should we be friends with each other just because we have kids?" I found that hilarious, because we actually did end up meeting more organically (well, more desperate need for babysitting, but you know, whatever), and we ended up getting along so well. Sometimes life is funny.

So here is to Zoe's new friend

And my new friends too.


Erin said...

What a cool story. You are both incredibly lucky!! Also, I was happy to see Sophi with a Cal shirt on. :)

rosedel said...

I'm glad you found a cool friend and a wonderful babysitter. Both can be hard to find. It will be nice for Zoe to experience bows along with her power tools.
Are you still working at the stadium? Baseball season is starting! Hooray!

rosedel said...

I forgot to say, I love the picture of the girls packed up to go on a road trip. So cute!

meryl rose said...

Erin - don't worry, Zoe wears hers too :) And I think Sophi's dad either got his master's at Cal, or is currently getting it (can't remember).

Rosedel - I know, I feel SO LUCKY to have found a great match. Isn't that photo of them in the car is so stinking cute? :) And yes, baseball season is just starting to ramp up - I'm working tomorrow and then Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. So the madness begins

Deb said...


Andi Shirazi said...

Zoe is wearing her Bear gear in the last picture! And yes, Sophi's dad is in grad school there now (working towards a PhD) but he also got his undergrad there! He is obsessed a bit. Oh, and I love these girls, especially together.

Anonymous said...

They're adorable and it does sound like a perfect match for all of you!