What is there to do during the summer in Miami? Other than soaking up the sun and playing on the beach, Miami is a kid-friendly city.
Here are five places for you to visit with your children:
1. Monkey Jungle. Monkey Jungle is a 30-acre park broken up into three sections: the wild monkey swimming pool, the Orangutans, and the Amazonian Rainforest. Families and children can walk through the jungle, and see each monkey living in their natural habitat. There is also the option of buying food to feed the monkeys.
2. Perez Art Museum Miami. Once a month, the art museum in downtown Miami, invites families in to exhibits and permanent collection free of charge. Then, the second Saturday of every month, the museum also schedules child-friendly art-making activities from 12-5 p.m. This is a great learning experience!
3. Fruit & Spice Park. Fruit & Spice Park is deemed one of the nation’s most unusual parks. At the park, you’re encouraged to pick and eat the fruit right off the trees (or ground). The park has more than 500 varieties of fruits, vegetables, spices, herbs and nuts. The park even has a bamboo grove, and a lake with a waterfall and lily pads. This is a good activity for days when the weather is nice, and exposes your children to the wide variety of available foods.
4. Coral Gable Arts Cinema. On the second Saturday and Sunday of each month, a family-friendly movie is shown at 11 a.m. for only $5 (popcorn included). This is an affordable option that allows the entire family to enjoy an activity together.
5. Miami-Dade Public Library. Not only does the library have tons of reading for your children and family, but they are also offering free museum passes. The Museum Pass offers patrons FREE admission for a family of four to the Deering Estate at Cutler, Fruit & Spice Park, HistoryMiami, Miami Children’s Museum, Miami Science Museum, Pérez Art Museum Miami and Vizcaya Museum & Gardens. All you have to do is visit your local branch!
Miami does have a lot of fun things to do with the kids during the day. AND, they also have a very exciting night life! While visiting take a night or two and check out one of their great restaurants or bars. TLC for Kids has trustworthy and experienced sitters who can come to the hotel and watch the kids. Call TLC for Kids Miami to book a sitter today (305) 256-5905.
TLC for Kids helps St. Louis and Southern Florida families find permanent nannies. At this time of the year we often hear from nannies with questions about taxes. If you are a nanny and haven’t received a W-2 from your employer, here are a few things you can do:
1. Ask the family if they’ve prepared your W-2 and when you can expect it. It’s entirely possible that the family got busy and completely forgot to prepare your W-2, or they didn’t realize the deadline was January 31. Also, if you recently moved and didn’t update the family with your new address, they could have mailed it to the wrong place.
2. If you discover the family isn’t going to provide a Form W-2 because they didn’t withhold or pay taxes last year, remind them that failing to handle the “nanny tax” obligations is extremely risky (felony tax evasion with expensive penalties) and denies you several important benefits. They may think that nanny taxes will be very expensive, so it’s worth letting them know that tax breaks for childcare expenses can offset most – if not all – of their employer tax costs.
3. Don’t accept a Form 1099 from the family in place of a W-2. This form is for independent contractors only. This is important to you financially because independent contractors have to pay the entire FICA tax liability (15.3%) whereas employees only have to pay half (7.65%). For a caregiver making $30,000 per year, that’s a difference of $2,295! It not only hurts your pocketbook, it’s also risky for the family. The IRS has ruled definitively that nannies should be classified as employees and families that misclassify their employee as an independent contractor are subject to tax evasion charges.
4. If the family simply refuses to give you a W-2 prior to the April 15 tax reporting deadline, you’ll be forced to file Form 4852, which is the substitute for Form W-2. Filing this form can trigger an audit for the family, but as a last resort, it’s the only way to legally report your income to the IRS. The form and instructions for filing it are available here.
Thank you Regardingnannies.com and Stephanie Breedlove for sharing this helpful information.
Decked out in their pajamas, Bodhi, Kai, Drake and Roman colored with markers and listened to a complete stranger read aloud Pete the Cat while their moms and dads slipped out the front door.
That the young boys didn’t know Melissa Rincon meant little; meeting new sitters is old hat when you’re between the ages of 3 and 6. But tonight, their parents had only met Rincon 15 minutes earlier when she knocked on Jodi Gallant’s door and introduced herself as the babysitter…
In a matter of minutes, Gallant versed Rincon, 24, about acceptable snacks, bedtime tricks and procedures for operating the television remote, while Drake and Roman’s mom checked out her vibe. Feeling assured, the parents were then on their way to the SoHo Beach House.
“Good luck,” Gallant said. Gallant’s husband, Stuart Sheldon, calls the service “convenient” and trustworthy.
“These guys are great. I had no hesitancy at all,” he said of TLC for Kids, the Miami company that employs Rincon. Co-president Sharon Graff-Radell…said sites that register millions of sitters may not catch everyone who has a red flag in their background, or who isn’t qualified to watch kids. “The problem with these online sites is people have a false sense of security,” she said. “They’re Internet companies. They’re not child-care companies. They’re the Amazon.com of child care.”
Graff-Radell said TLC… connects [parents] for a fee with one of its sitters, all of whom have minimum credentials like CPR certification, and have undergone…background checks. Families can also request sitters they’re familiar with.
“I have to take responsibility for everyone I send out, so it’s safer to use a service like mine than really to hire the high school kid two blocks away,” she said.
That commitment, a bio they received about TLC employee Rincon, and a phone conversation the night before was enough to make Jodi Gallant, her husband and their friends visiting with their boys from California feel comfortable. Rincon said she works at a day care at Florida International University, where she’s studying early childhood education.
“She called me and wanted to know what the boys were interested in, and she brought her own coloring books. Most babysitters never do that,” said Gallant as Rincon got to know her kids. “I just instantly felt a good feeling.”
Then Rincon brought out the goody bag and Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes. And with the boys distracted by the story of how Pete stepped in a pile of strawberries, the parents quietly headed to Miami Beach.