Desperate for a babysitter? Enter Mommy Mixer, a service that “matches” sitters and moms.
Founded in 2003 by Mary Sullivan Cooper in Austin, Texas, Mommy Mixer allows moms (or dads) to meet part-time, college-age sitters and find the sitter who best suits their needs. The idea quickly spread to cities all over the country, and this past April, Sandra Casey, a graphic designer and mother of two, decided to start a Westchester chapter. Says Casey, “I thought it was a great service and I know so many people in Westchester who need that occasional sitter.”
The way it works is simple: parents pay a $100 registration fee and sign up on the website, mommymixer.com; sitters, who come from local colleges, fill out a form relaying their experience and references. (Parents are responsible for following up with references and the sitter sets the price.) “Mixer” dates are set, with a maximum of 25 sitters and 20 parents at each event, where parents are given a handbook with sitters’ resumes and schedules. Mingling—and hopefully matching—ensues.
Casey recruits sitters from nearby colleges, including Iona, SUNY Purchase, and Mercy College, and parents often hear of the service via word of mouth or parenting websites. The first Mommy Mixer took place at Pink on Palmer in Larchmont; the latest one was held March 12 at Noel’s Fine Arts in Bronxville.