30 Days in Vegas with a KID!

I used to wonder what people meant when they stated they couldn’t wait to get home from a vacation so they could relax. I just spent 30 days in Las Vegas with a very curious 9 year-old, and now I understand!

It all started with the perfect plan. My husband would be busy playing in the World Series of Poker, while my son and I would soak up the sun at our private pool, compliments of the Summerlin home we rented. Summerlin is just far enough away (20 miles) from the hustle and bustle of the city to assure I would focus on a little work and a lot of relaxing. There was just one problem; Google is my sons best friend. In the weeks preceding our trip, he managed to compile a list of “things-to-do” that amazed me. I didn’t realize Las Vegas has so much to do beyond the casinos, clubs, spas and amazing restaurants.

Well, we reached a compromise. I would do a little work and together, we would do a few things from his list everyday with time reserved to meet Dad for dinner. Our adventure went a little something like this.

Thanks to the History Channel, our first mission was to check out my son’s favorite reality stars. We were able to locate and visit many including:

Toy Shack
Awesome store if you like toys! Got to meet the Toy expert!
450 Freemont Street
Las vegas, NV

ATM Store Las Vegas Information– TANKED
You enter through a gift shop and can see through to the working warehouse
3451 W . Martin Ave. Suite C, Nevada  89118
702-387-2016
9am-6pm Monday-Sunday.

Gold & Silver Pawn Shop Las Vegas – Pawn Stars
Have been 5 times and never seen anyone from the show, but cool to see.
713 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV 89101
702-530-4959
24-7 Monday-Sunday.

Rick’s Restorations Las Vegas
They have a free tour and we got to meet Rick and get an autograph
1112 S. Commerce St., Las Vegas, NV 89102
702-366-7030
9am-5pm Monday-Friday;
10am-4pm Saturday; and,
Closed Sunday.

Clark County Museum
Very cool place and we did get to see the Beard of Knowledge
1830 S. Boulder Highway
Henderson, NV 89002
Daily 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
CLOSED Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
General Admission: adults $2.00, seniors and children $1.
(702) 455-7955

Counts Kustoms
You can see a bunch of cars, but none of the guys are around usually
2714 S Highland Dr
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Ultimate Sports Cards and Memorabilia
Very cool store and got to meet the owner and get his autograph
450 Fremont St  Ste 183
Las Vegas, NV 89101

For a touch of culture, we found some age appropriate museums such as the Titanic Artifact Exhibition at The Luxor, Pinball Hall of Fame and the Mob Museum. We also had a blast visiting many of the Hotels and their tourist attractions.

Here is a short list of must sees:
Titanic – The Artifact Exhibition
Very interesting. You get a passport and find out at the end if you survived.
Luxor – Titanic – 3900 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Mob Museum
Really cool history and exhibits
300 Stewart Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89101

Mandalay Bay Shark Reef
Smaller than an aquarium, but a few neat fish to see.
3950 S Las Vegas Boulevard
Las Vegas, NV 89119

CSI Experience
You get to play detective – very fun for kids ages 8+
MGM Grand – 3799 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden & Dolphin Habitat
Didn’t get to see much dolphin’s but we did run into Siegfried – How cool is that!
3400 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89109

The Golden Nugget Shark Pool
AMAZING!
129 Fremont St
Las Vegas, NV 89101

Pinball Hall of Fame
Fun for the kids and doesn’t break the bank!
1610 E Tropicana Ave
Las Vegas, NV 89119

Hoover Dam
Something everyone has to do atleast once in their life.

http://www.usbr.gov/lc/hooverdam/

Bellagio Fountains
3600 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89109

High Roller
World’s largest ferris wheel
3545 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

The Linq
Cute side road filled with shops and restaurants – leads to the High Roller.
3545 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Adventuredome
Kid heaven – Parents nightmare!
Circus Circus Hotel
2880 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

Hershey’s Chocolate World
4 floors of chocolate heaven
New York New York Hotel
3790 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
You can drive through the canyon and stop to take pictures. BEAUTIFUL!
3205 State Route 159, Las Vegas, NV 89161

Coke World
3785 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

M&M World
4 stories of candy and fun. They even have a free 3D movie.
3785 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Don’t forget to check out The Strip at Night and Fremont Street (downtown).

Of course, the magic of Las Vegas would be nothing without real magic. My son wanted to see David Copperfield, mission accomplished! We also saw magic shows from several others such as Mike Hammer, Mac King, Murray and Nathan Burton.

Mike Hammer
Mike is super funny and entertaining. Great show off the strip.
4 Queens Hotel – 202 Fremont St
Las Vegas, NV 89101

Mac King
Harrah’s – 3475 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Murray
Tropicana Hotel – 3801 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Nathan Burton
Honestly one of the best shows I have ever seen. Action packed with illusions, great music and fun for the whole family.
Planet Hollywood Hotel – 3663 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, NV 89109

David Copperfield
MGM Grand Hotel – 3799 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Whew, I’m not sure how we managed, but we also ate at great places such as Pizza Rock, Secret Pizza – Cosmopolitan Hotel and Flour and Barley – The Linq.

Pizza Rock -
201 N 3rd St
Las Vegas, NV 89101

Secret Pizza
Cosmopolitan Hotel – 3rd floor
3708 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Flour and Barley
The Linq – 3545 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89109

As we arrived home to relax (Ha Ha), I realized that my 9 year-old son had taught me an important lesson. No matter where you go in this world, there is always fun and exciting things to experience other than the status quo. I encourage everyone to go online and locate many of these extraordinary places and make a pilgrimage to remember.  Vegas will never be the same as when you ventured there as a single, but doing it as a family is way better.

About the Author:
Erin Krex is a working mom living in Glenview, IL. She owns multiple companies including First Class Care, Chicago Mommy Concierge and After School Sitters. Erin has been an award recipient of the Leading Mom’s in Business 3 years in a row and also holds the title of 2010 APNA Agency of the Year winner. As an agency owner and working mother with domestic help, Erin frequently writes and speaks on subjects related to employee best practices for both families and employees. Erin is Bump Club Chicago’s resident Childcare expert and provides classes to families about how to hire a nanny and more.

 

 

 

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Insurance Issues when Employing Household Help

At our insurance agency clients frequently ask for guidance on insurance issues when they hire household help. Questions arise about workers compensation and automobile insurance. 

Workers Compensation Insurance
Employers are required by law to provide workers compensation insurance, in most states, for employees who will work full time  Although many states do not require workers compensation insurance for a part-time employee, the employer can still be held liable for injuries sustained.  Workers Compensation provides no-fault compensation for injuries sustained at work and lost pay.  The cost is usually around $1,000 per year for a full time employee.

Workers compensation insurance reduces the possibility of being sued by an employee, as the right to sue is generally waived in order to claim the scheduled benefits.  Health insurance is not a substitute for workers compensation insurance.  Many people don’t realize that a health insurer  might decide a claim it paid was really work related, and pursue the employer for reimbursement.  A homeowners policy is not a substitute for workers compensation insurance. There may be some coverage for injuries, but there may not be coverage for lost wages. In addition, workers compensation insurance is paid almost immediately, while the homeowners policy will typically provide reimbursement at a later date, after a claim has been are submitted and evaluated.

 

Auto Insurance
If your employee drives their own car, you should ensure that the employee has sufficient liability limits because if there is an accident you will likely be brought in to any lawsuit as the employer. You might pay the difference to increase the limits on the policy, or you might want to insure the vehicle yourself on a separate insurance policy.

Because it is likely that your own auto liability limits are higher, the preferable solution may be to have the employee driver your car which is probably safer than their car anyway.  You should add your employee to your policy as an additional driver so accidents that occur when driving your car will be covered by your auto policy.

 

A representative of Chartwell Insurance Services will be pleased to discuss all aspects of your personal insurance.
Contact:  Rebecca Korach Woan
312-645-1200 or
rwoan@chartwellins.com

Copyright 2013  Rebecca Korach Woan, all rights reserved.

Chartwell Insurance Services, Inc. is an independent insurance broker specializing in the personal asset protection of high net worth individuals.  

 

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The After-School Childcare Dilemma

For millions of families across the country the after school childcare dilemma is something parents dread on a daily basis. What are the kids going to do after school until we can get home from work? Do we find an after school program? A babysitter? A nanny? A neighbor?  Why is this such a constant area of stress?

Owners Erin and Steve Krex of First Class Care, a domestic placement agency and After School Sitters, an online resource have figured out 3 great options that could suit any family’s needs!

What are the options of childcare for older kids?

Option 1: Full Time Nanny Manager
A full time Nanny Manager duties include childcare, light housekeeping, organizing, laundry, errands, grocery shopping, schedule appointments, light cooking, manage any household vendors, driving kids to activities and help with homework.  This option offers parents full flexibility of having full time help  when the kids are sick or off of school.

Option 2: Full Time Housekeeper / Nanny:
A full time Housekeeper Nanny duties include full cleaning, childcare for school age kids, organizing, laundry, errands, light cooking, and driving kids. This option offers parents the same full flexibility so when the kids are sick or have a day off of school you have someone to care for them as well as have full cleaning of your home completed while the kids are in school.

Option 3: After School Sitter:
Hiring an after school sitter is a great option if you truly only want to  hire someone part time for the hours you need. Typically the type of candidate this will be is a collage or high school student who has after noons free. Professional nannies usually do not want just afternoon hours so finding someone with a flexible schedule like a student is key. The duties of an after school sitter are usually pick up the kids form school, driving to activities, homework help and possible meal prep.

How do I find the option I am looking for?
For option 1 and 2:
If you try to hire someone directly, it’s very time consuming and tough to find the right fit. You must go through the process of checking each candidate’s references, experience, performing background checks, etc. It is an arduous task to sort through all the applicants. By going through a professional agency like First Class Care, a parent knows that each applicant has already been carefully screened, interviewed and reference-checked. First Class Care accepts less than 3% of applicants. They send only the best matches for your job. First Class Care takes care of the interview scheduling as well as provide ongoing support during and after the placement.

For option 3:
Using a website like www.afterschoolsitters is a great resource as the site is very specific to your needs. Although the candidates are not fully screened, the site gives you all the tools to be successful or you can use First Class Care’s a la carte services help you out.

Tip for Parents:
If you want to go through a search try to allow at least 2 – 4 weeks for the process. Hundreds of great candidates are available, but you need to have the time to interview, which for working parents is usually only in the evening or weekends. To prepare yourself for your search make a list of expectations, duties and schedule. Use the tools provided to you to help with interview questions, contracts and reviews. Communication is the key to any domestic relationship!

 

By: Erin Krex
President of First Class Care, Inc.
www.firstclasscare.com

President of After School Sitters
www.afterschoolsitters.com

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Are you going away this Summer? Tips for properly packing luggage wrinkle free

Check out these great tips from our friend Charles MacPherson!

Video of Charles and his great packing

Charles the Butler shows us three packing methods for a creaseless and pleasant packing experience.

Before you even begin to pack, no matter what method you will be using to pack, lay everything out that you need first.

  • Coordinate outfits
  • Prepare toiletries, Consider if your luggage is going on board with you or with checked luggage as this affects liquids and ultimately how much you can take with you
  • Remember you are only going away, you will return home THUS you don’t need your entire closet; you can wear the same jeans or shoes twice!

Rolling Method

  • Everything should be tight so that there is no movement
  • Stuffed things inside each other to save space and avoid wrinkles
  • Lighter things on top, heavier things on bottom
  • Soft sided suitcases are best for the rolling method

Layering Method

  • Lots and lots and lots of tissue paper. You can never have too much tissue paper, remember you can re-use this over and over again, so its not to be thrown out when you unpack!
  • Lots and lots of dry cleaner plastic. You can never have too much dry cleaner plastic.

Hanging Method

  • When using a garment bag you can double or triple clothes if necessary on one hanger
  • Each and every hanger must be covered in a plastic sheet (dry cleaner plastic)
  • This method is ideal for delicate clothing, for example a wedding dress

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Super Helpful Food Allergy Labels and Products to Keep Kids Safe

www.allergyapparel.com

Did this school year go as fast for your family as it did for mine?  It seems that just when everyone is settled into the routine it’s time to change it up again.  As we gear up for summer camp and the open days of playdates and pool time, communication between nanny and parents is paramount.  And, when it comes to taking care of children with food allergies, it’s vitally important to make sure every person, especially nannies,  camp counselors and staff, are educated about the specific needs of the child.

Fortunately, the process is made somewhat easier thanks to the amazing food allergy

www.mabelslabels.com

community and some totally awesome products.   For example, check out www.allergyapparel.com for an impressive selection of COOL bracelets and other items that can be personalized with health and allergy info. (trust me- your kids will wear these!)  Mable’s Labels (yes- the camp label people!) also have great products to label food containers and other items that kids need at camp. (www.mabelslabels.com)

Another great site is www.allergymoms.com with terrific tips and advice for parents of food allergic children.

One of my personal favorite blogs is the Food Allergy Mama because her recipes are awesome and she’s a tireless advocate for food allergy awareness.  (http://foodallergymama.com/)

Below is a list of links.  Set aside quiet time to talk to your nanny about how to communicate your child’s safety needs, especially as the child’s schedule changes.  Clear communication- both verbally and written—is key here.  These products make it all a little easier.

Food Allergy Labels, Websites and Related Products:

www.allergyapparel.com

http://www.allergyapparel.com/His-Silicone-Peanut-Allergy-Wristbands-HISPEANUTBAND-3.htm

http://www.allergyapparel.com/Silicone-Alert-Band-SILICONE-BLK.htm

http://www.allergyapparel.com/Go-Green-Food-Allergy-Alert-Lunch-Box-LUNCHBOX-BIGDOTS-GRN.htm

http://www.allergyapparel.com/Zak-Nut-Allergy-Button-BUTTON-ZAKNN.htm

http://allergymoms.com/index.php

http://www.foodallergymama.com/

http://www.mabelslabels.com/products/allergy+alerts

http://www.namebubbles.com/labels/dishwasher-safe-waterproof-labels/alertbubble.html

www.allergyapparel.com

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What is an appropriate Nanny Summer Wardrobe?

Do you have a dress code for work? Do you have a “uniform” you are required to wear?  Even if your employer does not make you wear a specific uniform, you should have a “Nanny Uniform” for yourself and know the “do’s” and “don’ts”, especially when it comes to summer attire.

A uniform does not have to mean a starched dress, hat and formal gloves like the Norlan Nannies wear in the UK. Although they look classic, the look is not for your typical US household, and not always the most functional. You could create your own Nanny Uniform with just Khaki shorts and a polo shirt.

Although being a nanny requires you play on the floor, run outside or go to the park, that doesn’t mean you can roll out of bed and head to work.  You should always be appropriately dressed as a professional nanny and even keep an extra set of clothes in the car for those unforeseen accidents.  Not only are you representing yourself, you’re also a reflection of the family and the child(ren) you’re taking care of. You can dress in comfortable, but professional clothes without breaking the bank.

 

 

Great places for Nanny wardrobe essentials:
www.gap.com

www.hm.com

www.target.com

www.oldnavy.com

A great general rule of thumb, if you wouldn’t wear it in front of your grandparents, don’t wear it to work?

If you have questions on suitable attire, it is always appropriate to ask the the families you’re working with, or call First Class Care.

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Why You Should Send Your Nanny to National Nanny Training Day!

First Class Care, Inc. is excited to be the Chicago sponsor of National Nanny Training Day! We are having a full day of training featuring several amazing speakers in a variety of categories to help you increase your skills.

Along with all 6 great training sessions, we will have raffle prizes, goodie bags and an amazing lunch provided by First Class Care and our sponsors. You will go home with a certificate indicating your participation in National Nanny Training Day 2014.

All nannies and childcare providers are welcome!

Why You Should Send Your Nanny to National Nanny Training Day!

Learn Today, Use Tomorrow Sessions:
Your nanny will learn new strategies and solution to challenging behaviors and ages and stages transitions. She’ll leave a more confident and competent nanny!
Job Satisfaction:
Connecting with other like-minded nannies, learning new ways of doing things, being appreciated for great work she does all lead to a renewed sense of enthusiasm and commitment.
Develop Local Network:
Your nanny will meet other nannies from the local area. This is a great way to find play groups, learn about kid-friendly activities and places plus build a professional network of other dedicated nannies.

AMAZING VALUE (tickets are $55)
What do you get for the price of admission?
6 GREAT Sessions which will help your nanny in her career
Networking with other Professional Nannies
Full Buffet Lunch and Snacks
AMAZING Swag Bag full of products, information and coupons
(each bag is worth over $40)
Access to OVER $4,000 in raffle prizes including a MINI iPAD!
A FUN day for your Nanny!

BUY YOUR NANNY A TICKET TODAY!

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Nanny Delia – Candidate Spotlight of the Week

Delia is a college graduate and has 6 years of nanny experience with newborns and up including TWINS. She is organized, loyal and dependable.

Delia is seeking a full time Nanny position.
She is VERY flexible.
Gross hourly rate?  $18.00 – $25.00

 

What childcare tasks are you willing to perform? Bathe Children · Clean Children’s Room · Clean Children’s Bathroom · Make Children’s Beds · Organize Play Areas · Children’s Laundry · Children’s Bed Linens · Children’s Meals · Read to Children · Art Projects · Outdoor Sports · Arrange Play Dates · Purchase Children’s Clothes · Supervise Outdoor Play · Play Music

What household tasks are you willing to perform? Vacuum · Dust · Cook for family · Grocery Shopping · Run Errands · Pet Care

Why do you think you are qualified for this position? I am qualified for this position because I have extensive experience with multiples, infants and toddlers.I am a graduate from Loyola Univ. of Chicago. I have a solid educational background. I also have recently just graduated from nursing school.I have over 7 yrs of nursing experience and 10 yrs of babysitting.I worked as a certified nursing assistant. My experience has given me the skills to work with infants to grade school age children w/ various conditions and which helps me provide the best care possible.

 

What Delia’s References Said about her…
She is our nanny mary poppins! She is super organized.when I come home everything is clean and dinner is ready. She doesn’t have any weakness…shes a superhero in our family!

Delia is a diamond. If you get her consider yourself like you won the jack pot.

If you would like to find out more about Delia and many more amazing nannies please contact us at 847-733-2700

 

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National Nanny Training Day Registration is OPEN

First Class Care, Inc. is excited to be the Chicago sponsor of National Nanny Training Day! We are having a full day of training featuring several amazing speakers in a variety of categories to help you increase your skills.

Along with all 6 great training sessions, we will have raffle prizes, goodie bags and an amazing lunch provided by First Class Care and our sponsors. You will go home with a certificate indicating your participation in National Nanny Training Day 2014.

All nannies and childcare providers are welcome!

For complete details visit:  NNTD2014 Registration

 

Check out this video from last years event!

 

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Win a family ticket to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

Nannies and Moms, it’s your chance to win a family ticket to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago. The ticket grants one family of 4 (2 adults, 2 kids) access to all of the Legoland Discovery Center’s fabulous attractions.

LEGOLAND Discovery Center is made up of a series of interactive features to immerse kids into a world where their imagination can run wild with creative inspiration at every turn.  Featuring a whole host of exciting attractions from the Kingdom Quest ride to an amazing recreation of the Chicago’ most iconic buildings, the Center not only provides fun for LEGO fans young and old, but fantastic educational benefits too.

To learn more about the rides and kids attractions at the Center, visit WEBSITE

 

 

For a chance to win a wonderful family day; enter the contest today on the First Class Care Facebook Fan Page http://woobox.com/4xgaac

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