By the Book Review

We’ve all been there. Your babysitter arrives and you rush around the house as you finish getting ready to leave and scramble around to find a pad of paper to write down emergency numbers. Just the other day my husband and I were going to a military ball and there I was writing down our phone numbers, an emergency contact and barely remembered to jot down where we were going. I always say I’ll type up a sheet with numbers and information to help the babysitter best care for my daughter, but never get around to it.

By the Book is the solution. It has everything you’ll need for a babysitter, nanny, caretaker and even some things for your reference. It is separated into five (5) sections and I have summarized some of the main content below:

The Basics
Includes forms to fill out with daily routine, allergies and special needs, school information, extra curricular details (pictured below), what they love/hate, discipline tools, and odds and ends.

The Caregiver’s Notes
Just what I needed when we got the sitter for the ball, this section includes notes for the sitter and nanny news for regular caretakers to write down what your kids did while you were away.

Help! It’s an Emergency
An organized place for emergency numbers, authorization forms for the caretaker, emergency plans, where to find emergency equipment in your home, child identification and notes for unusual circumstances.

All Things Medical
Keep medical phone numbers, well visit records, immunization records, illness notes and charts.

Parents Only
This section is for parents to keep track of babysitters contact information and profiles, suggestions on credentials to seek in a sitter, questions you may want to ask a babysitter and a nanny application. There is also a section for a childcare agreement and reminders bout taxes and childcare.

The Verdict
I highly recommend that you keep a record of pertinent information for caregivers and stop procrastinating! There is no comfort better than being prepared and organized for routine childcare or for emergencies. The more information available to a caregiver, the better they can care for your children. By the Book was easy to use, clearly outlined and organized into sections to make it easy to quickly reference or scan through.

I liked that there is a section where I could keep notes on babysitters for future reference and even rate them (so make sure you don’t leave this section inside the binder for them to read). The medical section is perfect, because they can bring the binder with them to the medical facility in an emergency. The daily routine sections help the babysitter or nanny keep as close to your child’s schedule as possible. Children thrive on routine and honoring their routine will help reduce their anxiety while you’re away (not to mention your anxiety and the babysitter’s anxiety too).

Want a hardbound copy of your own? By the Book is offering TCDR readers a 25% off coupon code to help you get organized today. Enter “BTBK7757” at checkout.

Buy It! 
By the Book is available in PDF and hardbound versions depending on your preference and budget. I recommend their tabs so that you (and more importantly a sitter) can quickly find the right information. Choose between to different cover designs.

A PDF version of By the Book was provided for this review.
{If you enjoyed reading By the Book Review I would be tickled pink if you left a comment. To read more about my green(er) parenting aspirations, advice and adventures be sure to subscribe to my RSS feed or get updates via email.}


By Emi Stapler. I am a cloth diaper advocate, green parenting blogger, mother of three and a military wife who enjoys sharing my motherhood adventures and advice. Follow me at The Cloth Diaper Report on Facebook, Twitter @TheCDReport , Google +, Pinterest and Instagram.

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  1. My worst feear is that I will be away, and something serious will happen and I won't be there to comfort my baby. This book would help to get my kids the care they need as quickly as possible, and help me to be contacted quickly so I can get home!
    I'm a new follower, and I voted for you on the TopBaby Blogs site.

    I am hosting a Blog For A Cure Blog Party over at Who Knew? Reviews, ( starting today and running all week! Great way to get new followers, win great prizes, and support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society! please stop by!

  2. Holly Noelle @ Domestic Dork says:

    My worst fear? Well…I haven't left my daughter with anyone but Daddy yet! lol

    At this stage my worst fear is that she'll have one of her freak-outs that only seem to be solved by snuggling mama.

  3. I'm scared of everything. I have only left my son with my husband, my mom, and one time with my sister. Right now I fear that my baby will get hurt or left or that someone won't know how to comfort him like I do.

    This book sounds perfect for filling out their normal routine and things they like/dislike.

  4. i follow your blog

  5. i follow you on twitter and tweeted

  6. i follow by the book on twitter

  7. I'm your fan on facebook

  8. I have your button on my blog

  9. I have left my baby with daddy, my parents, his parents, a good friend (who was a nanny) and with my aunt. I really am not afraid of anything except him getting hurt really bad. This book will help me keep our parents in line during the week (they switch out watching him while we work)- help them to remember the schedule and for the different things I tell them that they keep forgetting!

  10. I follow your blog

  11. I follow you on twitter and tweeted

  12. I follow by the book on twitter

  13. I am a facebook fan

  14. I have your button –

  15. I subscribe to your emails

  16. I voted on top mommy blogger

  17. I voted on top mommy blogs

  18. I voted on top baby blogs

  19. I nominated you extra entry 1

  20. I nominated you extra entry 2

  21. I nominated you extra entry 3

  22. My worst fear–that I forget to tell the sitter how to reach me, and something terrible happens! I'm always scrambling for scraps of paper to write down the *important* info–this book would be a godsend :)

  23. I follow you–publicly–and love your site!

  24. I publicly follow Karen's Blog, too :)

  25. I posted your button on my blog–check it out here

  26. Bobbi Janay @When did I go from a kid to a grown up? says:

    My biggest fear is that the caretaker wouldn't know what to tell the ems in an emergency.

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