Nanny Cams… What parents should know.

I am a parent of 3 and have been toying with the idea of installing a nanny cam (or a few) throughout my house.  My children are my everything and now we have technology that can help protect them.  But a few questions come to mind when I consider this.

1. Is it legal to use a nanny cam?

Yes, in all 50 states it is legal to use a nanny cam.  It is not legal however to put the nanny cam in areas that should remain private like a bathroom or a maids quarters.  Some states require that you inform the nanny that you are watching her.  There are also laws in regards to filming someone talking.  Make sure you look into these laws before capturing any voice on video as you could be prosecuted depending where you live.

If you have a nanny cam, you should always be up front with the nanny about the fact you will be monitoring them.  If the nanny were to find out you were “spying” without their consent, it could cause some uncomfortable feelings.  And come on, you don’t really want to bust your nanny picking their nose or doing something else embarrassing.  Honesty is the best policy.  It will also encourage the nanny to give the best service since they will know they are being observed.

2. Will a nanny cam make my nanny feel uncomfortable?

If a nanny doesn’t respect that it’s just an added safety measure, than they aren’t the right fit for you.  Explain to them that it’s not personal and that you always keep a watchful eye on your children no matter who they are with.

3. Am I being over protective?

No.  Absolutely not.  You are being smart.  You are being safe.  You are being a good parent.

There are fabulous care givers out there and we need to continue life after we have kids.  We need to go to work, go on dates and occasionally take a day for ourselves.  We need to rely on others and the best way to do that and protect our kids is with a nanny cam.  We recommend it and support all parents who decide to implement them.

Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera

New From: $172.00 USD In Stock

Parent Scout Picks: Best Book For A Dad To Be

So, you are having a baby and you have no experience with them?  Never fear, Parent Scout Picks is here!  Today’s picks for Dad to Be is “Dude, You’re Gonna Be A Dad!”  Because let’s face it, men go from Dudes to Dads and they only have 9 months to get ready.  This book will help you do just that and keep you entertained in the process.

In addition to the book, we recommend getting a profile set up on Parent Scout because you are going to need all the help you can get and we have Nanny’s and Sitters to make the transition easy breezy!




Parent Scout Picks: King Jack and The Dragon

This is a favorite bedtime story about a boy with a big imagination.  The illustrations are wonderful and the story is written as a poem that flows through each page.  Not only do kids love it, but it’s a story that parents can read over and over.  As far as Parent Scout picks go, this top on the list. – Connecting families with local service providers including baby sitters , tutors and more.

King Jack and the Dragon

New From: $7.37 USD In Stock

Taxes and Caregivers

We get questions all the time from parents about paying caregivers and taxes.   Here are a few rules to follow:

1. One of the biggest mistakes people make when hiring a caregiver is assuming they don’t have to pay taxes if they pay the hire in cash. However, if a caregiver earns more than $750 a quarter or more than $1,900 a year, the IRS considers that person a household employee, and taxes must be paid accordingly.

2. Once the caregiver hits that threshold, the employer has to register and report employee wages and withhold part of his/her income.

3. Paying legally can increase the cost, but if you pay legally you are entitled to tax breaks.  The tax breaks usually offset the majority if not all of that extra expense.

4. A common tax-filing mistake is improperly classifying the caregiver as an independent contractor, which would push the tax burden on to the employee. According to Breedlove, in order for someone to qualify as an independent contractor the person has to control the entire work environment, including when and how to work.

5. Caregivers are also entitled to over time, and if families decide to forgo paying it, they could face a lawsuit and owe a big sum of money in back pay.  Experts say all household employees that work more than 40 hours a week must be paid time and a half in overtime under federal law for the extra hours.



Introducing Twigtale: Personalized Books for Children

Change can be tough on young children. Graduating to a big-kid bed, learning to use the potty, getting a new sibling, starting school, getting used to a new schedule… it’s hard on children, thus also on parents and caretakers.  Parents want to help, but between the endless Google searches and asking friends for advice, what’s the best way to really help your child?  Twigtale gives parents expert tools and language to better communicate important information with their children through their transformational personalized book-building platform.

Founded by Los Angeles parents Carrie Southworth and Nishad Chande, Twigtale specializes in personalized books for kids that communicate important messages.  What makes the books unique is that they are scripted by the Twigtale team of child development experts – psychologists, therapists, educators, and even medical professional.  The books are then personalized with photos and family details for the individual child.  Twigtale books were just featured in People Magazine as a best gift for kids!twigtaleimg

Twigtale is happy to extend a special discount to ParentScout families – please enjoy 15% any book with this code: ParentScout15.  The code is good for books only, may not be applied to gift certificates, and expires 12/31/14.

To order a book for your child, go onto, select a story, create your account, upload the pictures you’ll need (you can reference the image list beforehand to make gathering the photos much easier), edit the book text to include your child’s name and personal details, review the book, (add the discount code!) and you’re done!  The paperback books are all $20 and are shipped within a few days.

So whatever big or small life change you are struggling with how to prepare your child for, or even just want to teach them about love or find an engaging way to teach them to count to 10, there is a title for you.

Randy Turner: A Warning to Young People: Don’t Become a Teacher

We saw this article and felt it was important to share.  It is sad that teachers feel this way about a profession that is so important to the success of our children and the future of our country.  Don’t let a system that is run by politics destroy your child’s education.  Take control, get a tutor and keep your child focused on what is important.

Randy Turner: A Warning to Young People: Dont Become a Teacher.