We have a confession.
Our nannies in DC have a secret weapon against boredom and television time. Her name is Allison Birgfeld, and she writes the Beltway Bambinos blog. This nanny, turned mother, turned blogger, has been making us look good for some time now. Her helpful spring break camp guides, winter activity ideas, and trains! posts are our recent favorites. After rave reviews from families wondering how our nannies come up with these ideas, we decided it was time to come clean. Beltway Bambinos is a gold mine for fun activities in and around Washington DC.
We are thrilled we had this opportunity to get to know Allison!
A/N – What do you think DC offers to youngsters that you can’t find in other cities?
AB – It’s great for all ages! A walkable city with 19 free Smithsonian museums, a festival of some kind almost every weekend, mediocre sports teams and active alumni groups. Also, variety– You can experience a varied suburban landscape, urban life and rural experiences all at your finger tips
A/N – In what ways did being a nanny prepare you for motherhood?
AB – Before being a nanny I had done my fair share of babysitting but that was similar to being a grandparent; you come spoil and care for the child and hand them back to the parents rather quickly. Being a nanny is like being a third parent to the child(ren). You drive, cook, clean, wipe rear ends, discipline, love, teach, put to sleep and so much more. While nothing really prepares you for becoming a parent, being a nanny is as close as it gets.
A/N – If a nanny is new to DC, what are their top three resources to get them familiar with the city?
AB – Beltway Bambinos of course 😉 I love The Express and it’s so accessible, found on most major intersections in the yellow box. Kind of old school but a DC Metro Map to familiarize yourself with the different lines. And a good pair of shoes, a map and your set to walk and explore!
A/N – How do you balance your time between work, family and your personal pursuits?
AB – I don’t do a good job of carving out “me” time. I am organized and keep our kids busy. I just recently booked our babysitter for every other Saturday evening to make sure my husband and I get out on a regular basis. I spend a few evenings a week working on Beltway Bambinos and the other nights are spent binge the latest hit show.
A/N – Where do you go in the district to unwind?
AB – Baked and Wired; Vanilla cupcake with vanilla icing (sounds boring, but trust me), and iced coffee and a book (or a kid). Hands-down the best cupcake in DC. This transcends the hype of cupcakes.
A/N – What is your favorite date night activity?
AB – We are big foodies! Without question on a night out we try a new restaurant. My favorites across a very wide spectrum are Little Serow, Black Salt and Good Stuff Eatery.
A/N – Favorite Smithsonian Museum?
AB – Admittedly, I don’t take advantage of the Smithsonian as much as I would like to. It’s impossible to list just one favorite though. The one most likely to take the kids to is The Natural History Museum. The kids love the Butterfly Pavilion and the Q?rius jr, discovery room. It’s always fun to watch something in the IMAX Theatre there as well. A favorite to quickly go through with the family is The Renwick Gallery. Through May 2016 they have a fantastic exhibit called Wonder. It’s completely captivating for children and adults. A go-to, almost weekly in the summer for our family is The National Zoo.
A/N – Have you met Michelle or Barack Obama?
AB – I have not, however when I was a nanny I visited the White House on several occasions; meals in the West Wing, Easter Egg Roll, July Fourth Celebration, welcoming the Pope Benedict XVI and many more memorable experiences. I met President Bush and Condoleezza Rice.
A/N – Scandal or The West Wing?
AB – Homeland!!
A/N – Is there anything else you would like our readers to know about?
AB – Living and being a nanny in DC is best done by exploring and discovering. There’s more resources available for ideas now than when I was a nanny but get out and just go see things and places. It’s best done through the eyes of children. The city has so much to offer and I am hoping families see new places or revisit places after seeing them on my blog, www.BeltwayBambinos.com.