Taken from this month’s issue of the International Nanny Association June / July 2010 Newsletter, below are highlights of this year’s Nanny of the Year, Greta Schraer.
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I am so very honored to be the recipient of this award and to have the opportunity to share my heart with you this afternoon.
This past year for me has been a whirlwind. I have seen my career grow and change, largely due to last year’s INA Conference. I barely made it to Dallas. My husband, and I were in the process of buying a house – and it didn’t make sense to come. But at the last minute I decided to, and so glad that I did.
I remember clearly where I was sitting last year at the Nanny of the Year Luncheon … a table of eight, all strangers. I may have seemed calm to those around me but inside I was ECSTATIC to find this “Nanny world.” I remember listening to Donna Robinson’s great storytelling of the places her Nanny of the Year bag had traveled and MaryAnn Meddish’s encouragement to nominate someone we know as the next recipient. It felt like the first day of high school; I was trying to soak it all in.
I’ve felt a calling to children from a young age. I am only child and always wished I had my own siblings. I seemed to gravitate to those younger than me. My mother saw these natural tendencies and enrolled me in a course to become a “Red Cross Certified Babysitter” at age 12. She then found my first infant child care job with her as my mentor. I babysat through high school and took on part-time and full-time nanny positions throughout college. After receiving my theology degrees, I became a youth minister for junior and senior high students, nanny-ing part time on the side for fun and much needed income. Three years ago, I went back to caring for children full time.
This is my first position working with triplets – three boys. Family members of mine were hesitant at the challenge ahead. I kept hearing the phrase, “You don’t know what you are getting into.” Friends are still “wide-eyed” when they see three car seats all lined up in the middle row of my car. There are strange looks, points, comments, and many “bless your hearts” from those observing. I admit we are quite a sight navigating the tight hallway at preschool or climbing the hill at the zoo with our choo-choo wagon. Most don’t get WHY I would choose this job, AND love it. But, you do.