3 Things I Wish I Knew Before Becoming A Live-in Nanny


Just a little over 9 months ago, I accepted a job in Hawaii as a live-in nanny. I’m from South Carolina. I lived with my sister and my parents lived pretty close by as well. My life wasn’t perfect. I struggled a lot, but I always had them there for support. But I gave everything up and I moved away for this job. 

I took a huge risk accepting a job not only so far away from home, but off the mainland all together. It has always been my dream to live in Hawaii ever since I visited the big Island of Hawaii when I was 7 years old. I was excited more than anything and because I was so excited there were a few things I forgot to do when I accepted this job.

I wouldn’t say I messed up, but I wasn’t careful and well, I lost my job and I’m having to start all over. It hasn’t been easy at all. It’s been stressful because I basically have nothing and the only help I have here on the island is from my best friend that lives here. My parents are trying to help out the best the can, but it’s hard because they’re not even here. 

This has all been a learning experience. Being a live-in nanny has had it’s ups and downs. I’ve had a place to stay, a car to drive and food to eat. All I had to do is wake up and I’m already at work. I could stay in my pajamas all day and not even have to put on a bra. But at the end of the day, I’m already home. I miss that feeling after a long day of wanting to go home and get away from work. I couldn’t do that. I just went to my room. The kids were always around. I missed having friends over and movie nights at the comfort of my own home. And no privacy. Ever. Would I be a live-in nanny again in the future? Maybe. If I was planning on moving somewhere completely different than Hawaii, yes. This job got me here and I don’t regret taking the job at all. But next time, I will be more careful. 

If you ever plan on being a nanny, especially a live-in nanny far away from home, then please, please pleaseeee don’t make the same mistakes that I did. These are three things I wish I knew or had done before becoming a live-in nanny.

1. Have a good contract!

Seriously you guys! Have a contract and a good one! Don’t leave anything out! I did and that’s how I pretty much got blindsided. I did not put anything about taxes or what happens if my contract was to end sooner. Most jobs you get at least a two week notice…not me. I got a week notice. After that week was up, I had no job and no car. Luckily, my friend and I had already planned to move in together, I just ended up moving in sooner than planned. 

I was supposed to work for this family for a year. I ended up working for them until the end of march because they wanted to put their children in daycare. Although, I understand why they made the decision, I wish I had a heads up that they were even considering that option and didn’t plan on spots opening up for the kids so soon and not wanting to lose those spots, I wish I had a heads up.  

So, next time I plan on putting in the contract that if the parents are putting the children in daycare or if they plan on being a stay at home mom, that it needs to be brought up and discussed ahead of time. If they plan on ending the contract early, then I need a few weeks-month notice. Not only that, but also agree on some type of payment to buy me out of my contract so I’m left with nothing. 

Also, have a tax plan with the family and put it in the contract! We discussed taxes and they were supposed to claim me and take taxes out of each payment. Then after a few months, they stopped and in the end I’m left having to claim my taxes, not even knowing how to do it. I could have ended up in a lot of trouble or just stuck because it would appear that I went then last 9 months without a job.

2. Taxes!

Like I shared above, have a tax plan! Call the state and federal tax companies and ask what you’re supposed to do to be claim your taxes as a nanny. Do it before you take the job…don’t wait! It becomes stressful to figure these things out at the last minute. So prepare yourself.

Care.com provides a safe and legal way for you to get paid and your taxes are included.

3. Be financially prepared!

I’m not going to lie, I wish I had saved more money than I had. I have bad spending habits. I should have and could have done a better job putting money in my savings for emergencies. I’d probably be less stressed out right now and wouldn’t be struggling as much. I’m thankful I found a new job as quick as I did, because I’m not as worried, but still. I wouldn’t be stressed or worried if I was more careful. You never know what could happen, so be prepared, especially financially in case you have to start all over like I did. 

Carolina Home


Recently, I took a trip home to the Carolina states. It’s been 7 months since I’ve seen my family and friends. Boy, did I miss them or what?

I got really lucky and had 8 days to visit. Originally I was flying back for a weekend for my friends wedding and then the day after the wedding, I’d fly back to Hawaii. It was good to be back in South Carolina. I haven’t really been home sick but I did miss everyone back home. 

It was a good trip, but it was also kind of stressful. My friend Hannah’s wedding was beautiful and perfect! I’m beyond grateful she asked me to be a bridesmaid and that I was able to fly back for her wedding. I got to see my parents new home and spend time running around outside with my dog. I’ve never seen Buddy look so happy. At our old home, we had a gated pool area for him to run around free, but it wasn’t much. We had 10 acres of woods but he liked to run off and so we always had to keep him leashed. Now he has lots of room to run around free and unleashed.

I really wanted to visit Charleston, SC while I was home. I know, why would I go to the beach when I live in Hawaii and I’m surrounded by beaches? Well, Charleston has always been my favorite place to visit. I would go there all the time during the summer and I just missed it. Some of the greatest memories of mine have been made there. But I wasn’t able to take a road trip there because Charleston had just been pretty damaged by the Hurricane. 

I was in the Carolina’s for 8 days and I tried to see all of my family and friends. I had it all planned out. But right before my trip, all of the plans kept changing. I ended up not getting to see everyone like I wanted. It kind of bothered me. Especially, when I’m trying to fit every one in my schedule in a short amount of time and trying not to feel bad if I left someone out. It got to the point that I barely got to spend time with my family. 

I already miss everyone so much, but I’m so glad to be back in Hawaii. If anything, while I was in South Carolina, I got homesick for Hawaii. The Carolinas will always be home, but I don’t feel like it’s where I belong. I know more than anything that I made the right decision to move to Hawaii. It’s going to suck seeing my family about 2 times a year, but I don’t regret moving to Hawaii at all. 

I’ll be back in The Carolina’s sometime in March. If you didn’t get to see me on my last trip, hopefully I’ll see you next time. I might just end up having a big party so I can see everyone at once.

Waikiki Weekend Getaway

Sometimes, life gets a little overwhelming. You get stressed out easily. You’re working a lot and you’re finding it hard to relax. You need a little vacation. So, what do you do? Well, book a Hotel and have a mini getaway, of course!

Seriously you guys, this was just what I needed. My best friend and I booked a hotel room and pretended to live this luxurious life. It’s was fun and relaxing. It was also a great way to play tourist since we live in Hawaii. We forget to take advantage of the fact that we live on this beautiful Island. 

We booked a room at the Laylow Autograph Collection in Waikiki, Hi. They have great prices and the stay was wonderful. They upgraded us to a suite for free and we even got a goodie basket…we were pretty excited about that. We laid in bed and watched Milan on Netflix, went to the pool and laid out in the awesome pool chairs. I mean the chairs were actually in the pool. How cool and relaxing is that? Afterwards, we ate dinner and got fruity drinks by the bar and ended the day by getting all dressed up and going dancing with a group of our friends. 

I’m pretty sure my favorite part was wearing the super comfy robes that the hotel provides. I just wish we were able to take them home. I even slept in mine because it was so comfortable.

I’m definitely looking forward to doing this again soon. It was much needed, very relaxing and so much fun!


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For The Guy Who Dates Me Next


I’m always going to overthink. I will read into everything you do or say. I don’t get my hopes up. Instead, I’m prepared for the worst because it always ends badly for me. In fact, I’m waiting for that call or text from you any minute saying that It’s not going to work out. Even if that’s not what is going to happen, I think that’s exactly how things will turn out. This is just how I am. 
My past makes me this way and as much as I hate it, I can’t change it. I will always wonder if I’m good or pretty or interesting enough for you. I worry about every little thing I do or say because I don’t want to be pushy or clingy. I don’t want to scare you off. 

I will wonder why you are with me and if you really are interested in me. Are you planning on sticking around or am I just someone to fill in that temporary loneliness? 

I know that there will come a day that I won’t think these things anymore. I will know that you want to be with me because you actually do like me. And I will believe that that you aren’t going anywhere. Your intentions and feelings are honest and real.

But until then, please be patient with me. Sometimes, I will shut you out and unintentionally push you away. I don’t open up easily and if I do, it’s because I feel like I can trust you. I just need you to remind me that you’re here to stay. Tell me how much you care about me, even if you think I’m tired of hearing it. I promise I will never get tired of hearing it.

I might not be the prettiest, smartest girl and sometimes I feel like I don’t have a lot going for me, but I am the most loving and loyal girl you will ever meet. I will go out of my way to make sure you’re happy and that you know how much I care about you, that sometimes I forget about myself. All I ever wanted is to make someone happy. I want to love someone, but I also want someone to love me back.

I’ve never been loved back before. I’ve never been a priority or taken care of. I’ve never been treated like I’m special and one of a kind. I’ve been made so many broken promises. 

It’s not fair how I’ve been treated, but as hard as it is for me to open up and give my heart to someone, there’s nothing I want more than to do that. I want to give you my whole heart. I hope that you stay around long enough to give me that chance.

I Suck At Dating

I suck at dating. No, but really I do. On top of that I just have the worst luck ever with the guys I date. I’m 25 and I’ve been on like 4 dates in the past 2 years. Because of my bad past with relationships and the fact that I hardly date, I just don’t know what I’m doing. Plus, it’s terrifying and there’s so much pressure that comes a long with dating.

Do I like being single? Yes and no. Sometimes it’s kind of nice having the freedom and space of being single, but it’s also lonely…especially when 90% of your friends are in a relationship. But I’m comfortable being single. I’m used to it. I don’t have to worry about someone breaking my heart either.

I don’t know about you, but for me, dating causes me so much stress and anxiety. I want to look my best… I don’t want to try to hard… am I doing enough? I want to be myself with someone, but it’s hard because I really want to impress them. I want them to see me in a certain way because I like them and I really want them to like me back. I don’t ever know what to do or say. The beginning stage of dating when you’re starting to get to know one another is the worst. It’s fun, don’t get me wrong…there’s nothing more exciting than meeting someone new and getting to know them. The butterflies you get when you talk to them and see them and the excitement is such a rush. But it’s also scary and weird and definitely awkward. At the same time, there’s nothing more terrifying. It comes to a point when I start to overthink and read in to things. Worried it won’t last. Worried that I’ll get hurt again. I’ve actually gotten to the point that I don’t get my hopes up anymore.

It’s easy for me to be friends with guys it’s easy for me to talk to them and get to know them, but when I try to date, there’s so much pressure and I feel like I don’t know what to do. I wish it was easy like it’s easy just being friends with them. I know that’s probably weird, but I have no idea what I’m doing. 

Trail of Trials

Back in October, I was diagnosed with Asthma. I’ve always had athletic asthma which made it difficult to play basketball or run. The older I got, the worse it became. And now it’s just full on Asthma. One inhaler for mornings and nights and another to use through out the day when I need it. Last year I did a lot of hiking and realized breathing was slightly difficult, but I figured it was normal for me and I pushed through it. I (FINALLY) went hiking this weekend with friends here in Hawaii… I. About. Died. It may have been an easy trail for most people, but for me, it wasn’t. I realized I was definitely out of shape. This is also the first time I’ve been hiking with my ashthma like this. My lungs hurt bad. I couldn’t catch my breath. Once I did, I’d walk a few more feet and I couldn’t breathe again. I told my friends to go ahead without me. I didn’t want to hold them back, nor did I think I could go any further. I wanted to stay right where I was, sitting on a rock and let them make it to the top. I wanted to cry, but didn’t. I was angry because I already deal with other health issues, I now have crappy lungs too. It sucks.

I sat for a while, not wanting to get up and go further. I considered going back down to the cars. But finally, I decided that I’m a tough girl. I was going to finish the hike. I was going to make it to my friends. I was not going to let Asthma and my health problems stop me from doing the things I wanted to do. I was going to kick asthma in the butt. I was going to prove myself that I could do it. And I did. After a while I didn’t have trouble breathing any more, probably because I puffed my inhaler a lot, and I really started to enjoy the hike. I made it to my friends and it felt good! I will definitely do an easier hike next time and work my way up to the more difficult hikes. 

Today, my legs are KILLING ME! Haha, but I’m definitely motivated to kick my butt in gear in get into shape for these hikes! I can do this!

Island Fun

I’ve almost seen the whole island now. Before I haven’t been able to see or do much. It’s been incredible and loads of fun. I’ve done things I’ve never done before. I went cliff jumping at Laie Point and I finally saw my FIRST SEA TURTLE! If you don’t know me, you should know that I’m obsessed with sea turtles. The only time I have seen one was in an aquarium and it was for a brief moment. Seeing one swimming around free in the open water is nothing like seeing one in the aquarium. It’s magical and breath taking. Literally. I could barely breathe after I screamed loudly under water. I wanted to cry, but I was so shocked that I couldn’t cry or even say anything besides “oh my gosh” over and over again. Apparently a good place to go snorkeling and to see turtles is Sharks Cove. Cliff jumping was completely awesome. I felt like I could do anything after that. I was nervous at first, not about jumping, but only about getting back on to the rock. It looked a little complicated. But I did it. I’m proud of myself. 

While exploring, I have found my where I love to go and relax in the sun. The Makapu’u tide pools. I just want to get me one of those big flamingo floats and relax in the water with friends. It’s peaceful there and absolutely gorgeous. Definitely and instagram worthy location, at least to me it is. But nothing beats my go-to spot at the Nanakuli beach. It might not be the most gorgeous place on the island, but it’s still beautiful and close to the mermaid caves. I love the water there and how it’s not crowded with people like the east and north sides of Oahu. I also go there a lot because it’s pretty close to where I live. 

It’s been exciting exploring the island and doing all of these things. I have even found some great places to eat. I went to Boots & Kimo’s Homestyle Kitchen and Over Easy for breakfast with some family friends that are visiting and we ate the best pancakes and omelets that we have ever had. Both of them are delicious, but I think Over Easy was my favorite. Their crispy edge pancake (with the daily fruit and powder sugar) was heaven in my tummy. It’s bit of a drive for me, but I plan to go there more often when I’m on that side of the island. Ever since I moved here, I always said that everything tastes better here, and that’s including shrimp! I do not eat seafood often. Rarely I’ll have a couple of shrimp and some crab dip here and there, but lately, I’ve been eating a lot of it! Shrimp scampi, shrimp stuffed crab cakes and even shrimp from food trucks! And for some reason it tastes even better from a food truck. My dad will probably pass out from reading this and my sister will probably be even more excited to visit me and go out to eat with me. Seriously, this is shocking, even to me. But when you live in a place like Hawaii, you have to get out of your comfort zone and try new things. Who knows! The things you used to dislike might become something you love. 

If you plan on visiting Oahu one day, then I just gave you some great locations to check out. To those of you who just moved to a new city or state or even an island like me or if you are on vacation…. get out of the house. Get out of the hotel room. Explore. Go do things outside of your normal routine and comfort zone. Go do the things you’ve always wanted to try. It’ll be fun and totally worth it. 

Be Brave With Your Life

As I’m driving one day through Oahu, I look at the beautiful sunset behind the mountains and I can’t help but to smile and laugh a little. I became overwhelmed with gratitude and happiness. Sometimes I still can’t believe that I took a huge risk and moved here. I began to think about what my life would have been like if I was still living in South Carolina. I’m almost positive that it would have been the same as it was when I left. I’m sure I would have found a new job and a new car, but I’d be still living with my sister wondering if there was some grand adventure out there for me. Waiting around for something truely amazing and exciting to happen to me. The thing is…Sometimes those amazing and exciting things aren’t just going to happen…sometimes we have to make them happen. We have to take risks. I took a big risk moving to Hawaii. (I moved here with nothing but faith, four suitcases, and $30 in my bank account.) I believe that I’m here for a reason, but I also believe I’m here because of my own agency. I could have chosen to stay in South Carolina. It would have been the easy thing to do. It wouldn’t have been a bad choice, but I knew that other than my friends and family, there was nothing for me anymore in South Carolina. I needed something different in my life. 

So many incredible things have happened to me since I’ve moved here. I’ve been able to see good things happen in my life and be able to recognize how blessed I am. I have strengthened my relationship with God. I have a deeper love and appreciation for others and for different cultures. I’ve learned so much about myself and have opened up a lot. A lot of my likes and dislikes have changed. My desire to learn and travel has gotten stronger. I’m not normally this brave…in fact I never thought of myself as brave, but through this I’ve learned how to be happy and overcome my fears and anxiety. 

I think that taking risks is good for the soul. Life is a learning experience. It’s amazing to think about how we can live whatever life we want to live. We can do whatever we want if we put our minds to it. It’s up to us. Have a little faith and follow your dreams. Make goals and do it! Go apply for that dream job. Move to a new city. Ask that person that you’ve had a big crush on a date. Take a chance. You never know what will happen. Maybe it’ll be everything you’ve dreamed of. The outcomes are endless and can be really great. And if it doesn’t go so well, try again or find a new dream and try that one out. We are in control of our happiness and our futures. Follow your heart.

“If there’s even a slight chance at getting something that will make you happy, risk it. Life’s too short and happiness is too rare.” 

-A. R. Lucas

Faith or Fear

I have lived in Hawaii for a little over 3 months now. It has been amazing and I love being here more and more each day. But as the days have gone by, I’ve become a little impatient. If you know me, that’s not really surprising. I’m not that patient at all. Everything has pretty much been great and I can see everything in my life falling into place…but it just feels like something is missing for me. I know I’m here for a reason, but I don’t know what that is yet. I know I haven’t been here that long, but I hoped I would have found out by now. Lately, I’ve had the same questions play over and over in my head. What the heck am I supposed to do? Why am I here? I left my family and friends and everything back home and came here on nothing but a spiritual prompting and faith. 

When I first got here, I had this “go with the flow” mindset. Moving here was a fresh start. A great opportunity to learn new things and be who I want to be. It was great, no one knew me and I felt like myself for the first time in my life. I was no longer followed around by my past, I was able to let go of everything and I wasn’t afraid of the future anymore. I trusted that good things were going to happen to me and that there was a plan for me. I lived everyday off faith. Then slowly fear started to control my life once again. It’s such a bad habit of mine. I’m overthinking everything, all the time. I’m in my head. I’m stressing myself out.

Even though I’m on a completely different island, I became fearful that my past was just going to repeat itself here. I’m no longer living off faith. Fear is now fully in control. I’ve given up hope. I feel lost. I don’t feel like myself anymore. I’ve been really quiet and have kept to myself lately. And that’s not me. I like to talk and laugh. I love to have fun. I’m always dancing and being silly. I love being around other people. How could I let this happen? 

The other day, I attended a yoga class. The instructor was talking about how there are two things that control our everyday choices. Faith and fear. The very two things that I’ve been battling with the past few weeks. It was a yoga, breath and meditation class and at one point our instructor had us trying to do a handstand. I thought it was odd, but went with it anyways. I couldn’t do it. I tried a ton of times and I was getting tired and became frustrated. I used to be able to do this as a kid. The lady next to me was able to do it. Why couldn’t I? It was fear. Fear of falling. Fear of dislocating my bad shoulder. Fear of injuring my neck or hurting my back again. I didn’t have faith in myself that I could do it. I didn’t have faith in my instructor.

I’m done allowing fear control everything that I do. I need to have faith in God and his plan for me. I need to have faith in His timing. It’s all going to work out. We never know why we have to go through what we have to go though, but we can either let it defeat us or make us stronger. We can either be afraid to take chances and be afraid of what could go wrong, or we can have faith that everything is going to be okay. I believe that we have more opportunities for great things to happen in our lives if we take risks and have complete faith that everything will fall into place. 

“Fear can keep us up all night long, but faith makes one fine pillow.”

The Live-In Nanny Life


Most of you are probably wondering “what is it like to be living with the family you work with?”

When I first moved in, it took a bit of getting used to. It was a bit chaotic because there was a full house. The mom, two kids, two grandparents, me and my mom. I was also trying to get though a sinus infection that I got on the way over to Hawaii. It was a lot. Pretty much from day one, I was already helping out with the kids and doing things around the house. I didn’t have time to get out and see things. We were busy, busy, busy. All I wanted to do was sleep and spend time with my mom before she left. But it was good though, I’m glad I was able to figure things outs right away before I was supposed to officially start working. I would have been alone, no help, two new kids, in a strange house where I didn’t know where anything was. It would have been even more overwhelming than it already was.

After a week and a half, it was just the Mom, kids and me. It was a lot calmer and I was able to relax some. I was super worried that I would feel like I’m living in someone else’s home, which sometimes it feels that way, especially since the husband came home from deployment, but it’s never bothered me. I’ve always been the kind of person to make themselves at home anywhere I go. Each day I’m here, I’m becoming more comfortable and more at home. The family has been so great and welcoming, that it makes being in their home so much better. 

Living with kids is still taking some getting used to. This has been helping me work on my patience and is preparing me to be a parent even more. I have been a nanny for the past three years. I thought I have been through it all. Since I’ve been here, the kids have had so many different illnesses. There’s been a lot of crying, coughing, runny noses and doctors appointments. And I’ve been doing everything I can to not get sick, which I have learned there’s almost no avoiding it. I’m having to get used to the 2 year old always coming into my room. Most of the time I love it. It’s cute when she runs in to bring toys in my room in play. She enjoys  getting ready with me before I go somewhere. Sometimes when she hasn’t seen me in a while, she comes in my room to say hello and give me a hug. Then, there are times when I’ve had a long day and want to be left alone or take a nap, it’s not so cute. Not only that, the 2 year old comes into my room and messes with my stuff. I have a lot of stuff that I don’t mind her playing with or touching, but somehow she always gravitates towards the stuff I don’t want her to touch. She hasn’t messed up a lot, just my brand new makeup and broke my favorite pair of sunglasses. And before I leave somewhere she usually takes my keys or my shoes and runs off with them or hides them. Haha. Parents are probably laughing at me while reading this. I know it’s going to be worse and I’m going to basically have zero privacy when I have my own kids. 

It’s going to take some getting used to living with kids, but I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. There are times that the kids drive me up the wall and I can’t wait for the parents to come home so I can escape, but I adore them. I love their laughs and their warm snuggles. The sweetest thing is when I leave she has to hug me and stand by the door and when I come home, she greets me with a big warm hug and tells me how much she missed me. My favorite part of my work day is singing songs all day long, over and over again…that and nap time. Haha.

Each day is a new learning experience. I’m excited to spend the next year with this wonderful family.