How to Prepare for Your Newborn’s Arrival: 5 Tips

How to Prepare for Your Newborn’s Arrival: 5 Tips

Whether you’ve hired help from a maid agency for infant care in Singapore or not, there are many things that you still need to prepare before the arrival of your newborn. Particularly if you will have a lack of time and energy once you give birth, making sure you’re well prepared in these five areas in advance can certainly relieve you of needless stress.

1. Stock up on baby basics 

There are a few essential daily items that you must stock up on even if you’ll have an infant care maid from a Singapore agency to take care of your newborn. For starters, baby towels, handkerchiefs, wash basins and baby toiletries are must-haves to upkeep the baby’s everyday cleanliness. Nappy wipes, nappy rash cream and nappies are also important since infants are too young to be toilet trained.

Depending on your preference, choose between cloth diapers that are washable and cheaper over the long term or disposable diapers that provide more convenience but are not so environmentally friendly. If you choose the latter, note that they come in a variety of sizes and you must buy those suitable for newborns until your little one grows up. 

2. Prepare your baby’s room & supplies 

There is also equipment and furniture such as a baby cot, chest of drawers, stroller, night light and car seat that require a bit more planning and price comparisons. Especially for the baby cot, get one that is sturdy and smooth so that fingers or clothing would not get caught. The mattress size should also fit perfectly to the cot to prevent the baby from getting tangled in the excess material.  

Make sure to thoroughly clean or wash any items that your infant will get in contact with. Wash all the new baby clothes and beddings in advance and wipe down all the furniture and equipment with non-bio washing products to make them extra safe for infant use. 

3. Pack your hospital bags 

You won’t know when your baby is going to arrive, as such, you should get your hospital bag packed as early as the 37-week.  Include in the bag a full set of toiletries, toothbrush, toothpaste, a few sets of clothes and underwear and not forgetting a cardigan to keep you warm.  Also, prepare a set of nursing gowns that open in front to facilitate breastfeeding and an outfit that you can wear while going home. 

Don’t forget the Letter of Admission to the hospital and documents for birth registration.  Some hospitals have a birth registration centre where you can complete the birth registration on the spot.  If you’re not sure what to pack, check with your infant care maid whom you’re hiring from the Singapore agency. Your helper will have valuable information to share with you. 

4. Prepare your child for a new sibling 

If you already have children, you have to find ways to prepare them for the arrival of their new sibling. There are a variety of ways to do this and how well they work largely depends on their age.  One common method used by many parents is to read books about new babies or siblings to prepare them for the new arrival. Some parents also let their children select a special gift for the newborn or pick out decorations for the baby’s room to help them ease into the idea of having a new sibling.

5. Get an extra pair of hands 

There is no shame in asking for an extra pair of hands to help with chores when your newborn arrives. The entire process can be overwhelming and when you have a helper or a confinement nanny to take care of tedious and unexpected matters during the first month, you can more easily transit into parenthood and enjoy precious moments with your little one with fewer glitches.

Don’t let the stress of preparing for the arrival of your newborn get the better of you. Reach out to us at Homekeeper Maid Agency by calling (65) 64685220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email at contactus@homekeeper.sg for more details for an infant care helper who can give you peace of mind.

Preparing for Your Domestic Helper’s Arrival: 5 Tips

Preparing for Your Domestic Helper’s Arrival: 5 Tips

Just like how you’ll welcome a new employee with onboarding programmes, you should do the same for your new domestic helper to ensure she will ease into the job more seamlessly. If you’ve recently hired a domestic helper from an agency in Singapore and she is about to start work, here are five things you should do to help her integrate smoothly into your home.

1. Sort out living arrangements 

Allocate a comfortable space where your domestic helper who newly arrived in Singapore can feel at ease in. When she has a comfortable room, she’ll not only feel welcome but also be encouraged to work more diligently. Make sure to clean up the room thoroughly so that she doesn’t have to clean her own room as her first task. You may even want to make the room more delightful to live in with proper furniture, colourful bedsheets and curtains that offer maximum privacy.  

2. Define expectations & priorities 

Take some time to convey your requirements even if you assume your helper’s agency in Singapore may have done a round of briefing. When you can clearly define your expectations and priorities, your helper will be more aware of where her commitment should be placed. 

Start by explaining her key duties and schedule, including wake-up time, meal times and rest days.  Then go on to explain her wage, allowances and any banking-related matters that she should take note of. Importantly, both of you must come to an agreement regarding mobile phone usage. You should address issues such as whether you will provide your domestic helper with a mobile phone in Singapore, when she can use her phone during the work day and whether she can tap on the home Wi-Fi.

3. Prepare a handbook of helpful information 

Because your domestic helper is new to Singapore and how your family operates, you should create a handbook with useful information to help her integrate into her surroundings more seamlessly. Include in the handbook all relevant information such as key contact numbers of relevant authorities, family members and people that she may need to communicate with for daily work matters. 

On top of these contacts, weave in details like travel instructions, medication requirements for the family and addresses of locations that your helper may need to visit during her employment.  For example, addresses of your children’s school and your parent’s and in-law’s home should be included since your helper may have to travel to and fro these places regularly.  

4. Consider privacy & boundaries 

Because your helper will be living with you and become a part of your household, it can be somewhat uncomfortable if you don’t set boundaries. While your helper’s agency in Singapore might have explained basic guidelines on how to live harmoniously together under one roof, you’ll still have to reiterate the boundaries based on the real scenario to protect both parties. This can point to defining what she should or should not do, what she can or cannot touch and to what extent she can exercise her own discretion. For example, be clear about whether she can discipline your children if they misbehaviour and what kind of disciplinary action she can take. The more you can define the boundaries, the better chances for both of you to live together with less conflict and misunderstandings.

5. Keep an open mind 

It is possible that despite the explanation, she may still not perform tasks the way you want it. But if you can exercise tolerance and continue to give your feedback respectfully, surely the goodwill will encourage her to succeed eventually. People usually learn from positive reinforcement – if you show gratitude for the good work she’s done, it is bound to bridge the relationship between both of you too.  

Having a domestic helper can be a saving grace in so many ways. If you’re bogged down by too many household chores, don’t hesitate to contact us at Homekeeper Maid Agency by calling (65) 64685220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email at contactus@homekeeper.sg for more details. Our domestic helpers in Singapore are trained to provide infant care, elderly care and housekeeping so that you’ll always have peace of mind. 

 

Caring for Someone With Alzheimer’s: 5 Tips

Caring for Someone With Alzheimer’s: 5 Tips

Over 55 million people around the world suffered from Alzheimer’s disease or dementia in 2020, and these numbers are estimated to double every 20 years. What exactly is Alzheimer’s disease?  Simply put, it’s a type of brain disorder that slowly destroys cognitive skills and eventually impedes a person’s ability to carry out the simplest daily tasks. Unfortunately, it is a condition that can happen to anyone and even rattle the lives of their caregivers. Whether you’re reading this blog because you’re on the arduous journey of providing care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or have hired help from a maid agency in Singapore to assist you, here are five tips that may be helpful. 

1. Read up on Alzheimer’s disease

The first step is to learn about Alzheimer’s symptoms, treatments and challenges that both the patient and caregiver may face. If you’re equipped with knowledge of what Alzheimer’s disease is and how many stages of Alzheimer’s there are, you’ll understand that there is extensive knowledge you need to acquire before you can administer the best care. The APOE mutation in Alzheimer’s patients can affect them differently at different stages. When you are fully aware of how the disease works, you’ll then administer the right treatment and exercise more patience in caregiving. 

2. Set a routine

Whether you’re providing care to an Alzheimer’s patient personally or engaging a maid agency in Singapore to get a qualified helper, it is good to establish a constant daily routine. This can help the patient who is already experiencing cognitive deterioration to reinforce a sense of familiarity and to avoid confusion that may arise from random changes to their routine. Keeping a regular schedule can make it easier for the patient to keep track of daily to-do items like showers, taking medicines, nap time or exercise. As a caregiver, be prepared to take more time than usual because of the patient’s mental condition.

3. Keep them engaged

Those with Alzheimer’s disease are plagued with memory loss and cognitive difficulties that cause them difficulties like getting lost, trouble handling money and inability to do daily chores.  However, no matter how many stages of Alzheimer’s the patient has gone through, it is still imperative to keep them engaged with activities and establish regular communication. Instead of putting a halt on all events as a form of protection, let them engage in activities like exercising and doing household chores. Providing aids like visual cues, simple instructions, and sensor devices will be helpful in guiding them along.  

4. Create a safe environment

While it is important to keep Alzheimer’s patients engaged, cautionary measures must also be in place to keep them from harm and help them feel safe. In the past, they may be well aware of avoiding hazardous zones. However, with declining cognitive ability, they may just walk past a “Danger Ahead” signage without understanding what it means. As such, equipping them with the right tools and a safe environment is a must. For example, using tape with prominent colours on the edge of steps, padding sharp corners on furniture or switching to an induction cooktop can help to reduce the risk of injuries. 

If you are a Singapore citizen who requires long-term care for a child below 16 or an elderly 67 years old and above with disabilities or medical conditions, you may be eligible for an FWD Concessionary Levy Scheme. 

Not sure how to apply?  Reach out to Homekeeper Maid Agency in Singapore by calling (65) 64685220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email at contactus@homekeeper.sg for more details. Homekeeper is one of the participating employment agencies and will be able to assist you in recruiting the ideal helper and even offer pre-employment training specific to elderly and disability care.

6 Housekeeping Hacks to Make Your Life Easier

6 Housekeeping Hacks to Make Your Life Easier

Keeping up with Singapore’s fast-paced lifestyle can be difficult. This can be especially challenging if you have to manage a busy corporate life, attend to your children’s needs and still have to find time to manage household chores. If you are faced with a crazy schedule every day, here are six housekeeping hacks that can make your life easier.  

1. Iron your clothes when slightly damp

Remember that time when your child needed a spare set of school uniforms but the only one available is still being hung out to dry? If that happens again, tell yourself that there is no need to wait for the clothes to dry. It is actually easier to iron your clothes when they are slightly damp. Ironing completely dried clothes can require effort because creases would have set in, and you’ll need to take a much longer time to smooth out the wrinkles.   When clothes are slightly damp, the ironing process is simplified because there is no need to spray water or starch.  Ironing out the creases is also much easier.

2. Wash dirty dishes in a huge tub

For those without a dishwashing machine or hired help from a maid agency in Singapore, washing dishes may be one of the most dreaded household chores. Not only do you have to do it after every meal but each time there is bound to be a full range of dirty dishes ranging from big utensils to small cutlery and cups. If you want to streamline this process, consider washing the dishes in a huge tub. Fill the tub with water and soap, then sink all the dishes inside to soak out the dirt before finally rinsing them one by one under a running tap. 

3. Use vinegar for cleaning

There are many housekeeping hacks that can save money, and one such hack is using vinegar in replacement of cleaning detergents. With some research, you’ll discover that vinegar is an effective cleaning agent that is great for removing even the most stubborn stains. For example, you can microwave a mixture of vinegar and water to soften stains and residues.  This process makes it much easier to wipe away the dirt and leave the microwave smelling fresh.  Vinegar can also be combined with olive oil to remove liquid stains on wooden furniture and restore its original look

4. Get rid of stubborn stove grease with baking soda

Baking soda is a superb cleaning agent because it is mildly alkaline and can cause dirt and grease to dissolve easily.  Coupled with the fact that baking soda is a non-toxic product, it is extremely suitable as a household cleaner.   A good spot to use this cleaning agent is the stove, which is usually stained with food residues and grease.  Simply sprinkle the baking soda on it, then spray some water.  Let the mixture sit for an hour before wiping down.  

5. DIY your own toilet & sink cleaners

Do you know that you can create natural toilet cleaners from scratch? To make a toilet bowl scrub, mix one cup of baking soda with drops of tea tree and lemon or orange essential oil. This cleaning scrub will make your toilet bowl sparkling clean in no time. Alternatively, try a mixture of baking soda, drops of lemon and basil essential oils and dish soap.  This mixture makes a perfect cleaner for toilet sinks and bathtubs (and also leaves them smelling great too!)  

6. Remove pet fur with rubber gloves

If your vacuum cleaner is not picking up your pet’s fur, don’t fret – with just a pair of rubber gloves, you can pretty much get the job done. Simply wear the gloves and glide them across your sofa, curtains, and any fabric coverings that have trapped fur. The friction between the glove and the fabric will create a static energy that causes light debris like pet hair and lint to stick to the gloves.

When it comes to household chores, there is no need to go at it alone. Consider hiring a helper with Homekeeper Maid Agency to lighten your load. Reach out to Homekeeper Maid Agency by calling (65) 6468 5220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email contactus@homekeeper.sg to find your ideal helper today.

 

Direct Hire vs Maid Agency: Key Differences & What You Need to Know

Direct Hire vs Maid Agency: Key Differences & What You Need to Know

In Singapore, most people are burdened with a fast-paced lifestyle that is packed with work and household commitments. Inevitably, many are turning to domestic helpers to manage their chores and ease their load. If you’re looking to hire a helper, you’re probably contemplating if you should directly hire a transfer maid in Singapore (or overseas) or engage a maid agency to scout for one. Before you make a random decision to choose either option, here are five differences between the two that you need to note: 

1. Choice of candidates

Direct hire simply means hiring foreign domestic helpers through your personal network without engaging a transfer maid agency in Singapore. You can hire a candidate from overseas or one who is already working in Singapore but is willing to transfer to a new employer due to personal reasons. 

Even though such a hiring method may shorten the process, the pool of candidates you can access is very limited.  Conversely, if you work with a maid agency, you tend to have a more comprehensive network of potential candidates to select from.  This allows you to match your criteria with the agent’s list of candidates and shortlist the one who best meets your requirements. 

2. Employment paperwork

Whether your final decision is to directly hire a transfer maid in Singapore or hire one through an agency, you can choose to process the employment paperwork via a maid agency. It’ll handle all the legal processes, including managing different demands from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and let you have a hassle-free transaction.  However, the maid agency usually charges a fee and that may pose a problem if you’re on a tight budget. If your priority is to reduce cost, it’ll be a lot more economical to handle the direct transfer of the maid in Singapore yourself. 

3. Pre-employment training

Tapping on a maid agency for assistance goes beyond benefiting from a seamless employment process – you can also take advantage of its pre-employment training. This added service trains domestic helpers in essential housekeeping, infant care, elderly care and even disability care. They are given a combination of theoretical materials, hands-on practicum, and assessment tests to ensure each person is well-equipped to handle any tricky situations on the home front. On the other hand, if you directly hire a transfer maid in Singapore without engaging a transfer maid agency in Singapore, there is no way you’ll know if the person you hired is capable of fulfilling the role. 

4. Replacement process

One key reason why employers choose to tap on a transfer maid agency in Singapore as opposed to hiring one on their own is the quick replacement process should the hired help fail to meet their requirements. Contractually, the maid agency is liable to find a better replacement for you. 

If you hire a direct transfer maid in Singapore or overseas without an agency, all you can do is send her back to her hometown or encourage her to look for a new employer before you can re-hire another. You’ll have to start the hiring process all over again and incur additional costs to process the paperwork. 

5. Costs

Directly hiring a helper may seem like a more affordable option at first glance, but if you analyse the various factors mentioned earlier, it is actually a risky option. For example, employers have to bear the risks of misfit skillset, replacement difficulty as well as unfamiliarity with employment paperwork.  Any misstep can point to repeating the hiring process and incur more time and money.  The honest truth is that paying professional maid agencies to do the job has its advantages.  It is a cost-effective solution that will offer greater peace of mind. 

Reach out to Homekeeper Maid Agency by calling (65) 6468 5220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email contactus@homekeeper.sg to find your ideal helper today. Homekeeper Maid Agency is a leading maid agency in Singapore that has served over 80,000 households since 1998. We endeavour to be a trusted partner that offers seamless maid employment services and transparent prices.  

 

How to Nurture a Strong Bond With Your Child: 5 Tips 

How to Nurture a Strong Bond With Your Child: 5 Tips 

Parents can sometimes be so busy that they lose track of the importance of sharing quality time with their little ones.  Like any relationship, the bond between a parent and child requires careful nurturing and regular communication to make it stronger. If you’re a parent looking for ways to build a closer relationship with your child, here are five easy ways: 

1. Share about your day

As much as you’re eager to hear about your children’s day at school, they’ll want to hear what you’ve been busy with too. When you can talk freely about yourself with them, you are showing them that you value them as a person and feel close enough to confide in them. In return, they’ll feel more inclined to communicate openly. Of course, there is no need to deep dive into office politics or complicated technical issues that are hard to phantom. The least you can do is to discuss the interesting people or situations that you’ve encountered. You can also share your achievements and problems to help your children understand more about your life that they are not privy to. 

2. Make time for meals together

Eating together as a family always leads to light-hearted conversations and emotional bonding. Even if you are unable to have meals together with your child every day, make it a point to dine with them as often as you can. Research has found that when parents and children regularly share mealtimes together, the little ones tend to develop better health, eating habits, social skills and emotional wellness. If you’re too bogged down with work or household chores to have meals with your child, perhaps these are good enough reasons to engage a maid agency in Singapore to help you hire a domestic helper to ease your load. 

3. Spend quality time together

Working parents tend to have difficulty juggling their time between work and family. But if you want to nurture strong bonds with your child, spending quality time together is a must. This doesn’t mean a few minutes of watching TV together. You must go the extra mile to spend time communicating, playing or even developing a hobby together. Make it a point to turn off your mobile devices when you are spending time together too. That way, you’ll not be distracted by external noises, and your child will also see your dedication towards them. 

4. Treat your child with respect and expect the same

A child’s environment and interaction with their adult figures can easily shape their behavioural patterns and thought processes. When you choose to treat your children with respect through simple acts of acknowledging their point of view, privacy and values, they are more likely to develop self-confidence and render the same respectful behaviour to others. This doesn’t mean that you have to let them do whatever they wish, but instead of going berserk on them for misbehaving or yelling to get your points across, choose a more loving manner to iron out the problems. Treating each other with respect and courtesy will not only bring you closer but also make your home a more pleasant place to live in.

5. Don’t be afraid to express your love

Show love to your children every day and let them know how much they mean to you. Some parents choose to buy material things to compensate for the lack of bonding time; however, sometimes, it can be as simple as saying ‘I love you’ or giving them kisses or lots of hugs to remind them of the kinship between you. Interestingly, research has even found that hugging can help to fight colds!

Ultimately, nurturing the bond takes time. If time is not on your side, don’t hesitate to engage a maid agency in Singapore to help you hire a helper anymore. This can free up your time and let you bridge closer ties with your little ones.

Reach out to Homekeeper Maid Agency by calling (65) 6468 5220, WhatsApp (65) 8515 5527, or email contactus@homekeeper.sg to find your ideal helper today. Homekeeper Maid Agency is a leading maid agency in Singapore that has served over 80,000 households since 1998. 

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