Monthly Archives: November, 2011

Huge changes to the Canadian Live-In Caregiver Program are underway


The worst kept secret is finally out, that there are huge changes underway to the Canadian live-in caregiver program. In Friday’s Metro News in Toronto (a Toronto Star daily) is was reported that the number of caregivers accepted in Canada last year through this program declined last year to 8,400 from its previous high of 13,800 in 2007.

In 2008 it took just under 1 year to bring a nanny to Canada from overseas and currently that process takes upwards of 18 months to get this done. In addition, the latest requirement that employers pay the transportation fees to being the nannies over, plus the additional scrutiny that potential employers must go through, there are less nannies getting through the system, as it’s getting expensive for the average Canadian.

With fewer nannies arriving, the current group of nannies are being expected to work longer – under the program, a nanny could complete her requirements of working 2 years within 3 years of being in the program, and then could apply for an open permit while applying for permanent resident status. Two years ago, a nanny could have her permanent residence in less than 6 months after that. Nowadays, Citizenship and Immigration Canada is processing permanent resident requests much slower, taking up to 2 years per item, so nannies applying for this need to remain employed, thus prolonging their stays.

The belief is that the government would prefer to keep these jobs in the country and have employers hire locally trained nannies to keep Canadians employed, by making the program expensive for potential employers and difficult for potential nannies to be brought over to Canada and then in the process for them to become permanent residents.

Nannies working in Canada under the open permit are generally not allowed to attend Canadian schools to upgrade their education and applying as a foreign student is extremely expensive and unattainable for a caregiver working for minimum wage.

In our case, our nanny has been in the country for 3 years, 2 years with us and one year elsewhere, and her permanent residency has been sitting with the government for almost a year. She is bright, ambitious and would be a model Canadian, however, she cannot take any accredited courses, and she will not be leaving us to work at Tim Horton’s, it’s our obligation to make sure she gets a great job to help herself support herself and her family. I love that she is staying with us, and once she gets her permanent residency, we discussed her staying with us to continue to work – reduced hours – while attending school to work on her English and find what she really wants to do with the rest of her life.

Too few people take that approach with their employees, I mean don’t you want all your staff to improve, to grow and to be successful?

This delay is going to drive away some great nannies caught in the system and deter them from contributing to this beautiful country.

Reach out to Immigration Minister Jason Kenney and tell him… I did. I actually caught him on Twitter. He didn’t reply, but if enough people reach out, maybe they’ll see the light.

Between these delays and the new requirements on nanny agencies – they must have an immigration consultant, lawyer and paralegal – tells me they are tightening the screws. It’s good and it’s bad. It’s good if it’s being done to prevent exploitation and make the system work better but it’s bad if it is forcing those great nanny placement agencies who are barely scraping by thanks to the new regulations and requiring them to spend more money.  It will surely put some of them out of business too… Unless that is the point of this exercise.

Here is the contact information for Canadian Immigration Minister, Jason Kenney;

Constituency Office:

1168 137 Ave SE
Calgary, AB
T2J 6T6
P. 403-225-3480
F. 403-225-3504

Ottawa Office:

325 East Block
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
P. 613-992-2235
F. 613-992-1920

Email: kennej@parl.gc.ca

Link: http://www.jasonkenney.ca/EN/4961/

Twitter: @kenneyjason

 

What are your thoughts?

Life’s Greatest Mysteries; Crop Circles, Who Killed JFK and a Child’s Thought Process


The three items listed in my title will probably never, ever be explained.

Are crop circles an elaborate hoax perpetrated by a bunch of schemers?  Who really killed JFK, was it one shooter or the CIA or the mob?  And how kids brains work…

Since this is a daddy blog first and foremost, let me expand on the last item.

Readers of this blog will recall the issues we’ve been having getting Stewie out of his night-time pull ups.  He was quick to train during the day – 2 1/2 if my memory serves me correctly, but it took him until about 4 1/2 to stop soiling his pull-up at night.  The most difficult thing to do has been to get him to understand what he was doing because when he went to sleep he knew not to do that, but when he woke up, he seemed surprised – and a little disappointed – that it had happened.   And to be honest, I don’t think he consciously stopped doing it, I think he just created a pattern which did not include a night-time bowel movement.

Getting him to stop peeing at night, however, has been a disaster.

I tried waking him up ever couple hours to pee, I tried no water before bed, I tried making him pee three times before he sleeps, we tried the double pull up… He hated that one! I tried explaining it to him and I tried mocking him (sorry), by telling him babies wear diapers. His response to that was to not wear a pull-up to bed, then sleeping in a pool of pee.

For the past year and a half he’s slept with a rubber sheet under his sheet and on top of that is a towel which absorbs some of the pee but never enough as he continues to pee through his diapers, then pull-ups.  Neither Huggies nor Pampers helped.  We tried all brands, all styles.  The Pampers Under Jams have worked the best of all the night-time items, they hold a lot of urine! I told him they are night time underwear, and not diapers… Whew. The Huggies Pull-ups, on the other hand worked for one pee, but when the floodgates were open they were pretty much useless. 

Compounding this problem was the fact that he wanted to sleep in bed with mummy, every night for the last 5 months and she couldn’t have him in her bed without him peeing first, changing a full pull-up and a towel on the bed… A lot of work at 2, 3 or 4 in the morning for either of us.

I think the most frustrating part here is that the whole time Stewie knew he was doing this.  He said he was “too tired” to get up to pee. 

A couple of times I would take him to pee and he a little bit of pee would trickle out, then we would put on his pull up and within seconds it would be full. 

I would glare at him, he would smile.  Such a cute face…

Then out of nowhere, just days after his 5th birthday, the little bugger woke up completely dry. I asked him what happened and he said he got up to pee (I know he did not).  I think he just decided he was going to hold it… Finally. 

He just decided to hold it.

Every night for that week, I would walk into his room, and check to see that he was wearing his pull-up, then see how wet it, or he was. It’s been completely dry.

Then he started getting annoyed.  Annoyed that for the past year and a half we’ve been doing the poke test on him.  Poking to see if he’s wearing his pull-up, poking him to see if it’s full and now in the last 3 days, poking him to see if he’s wet.

Just last night, he came into our room, I rushed to move him back to his room, but he returned shortly thereafter (“I NEED mummy!”) he cries, so I took him to his room again and laid down with him. 

Every now and then I would reach over and give the poke test, to which he promptly replied; “Stop poking me, Daddy.  I’m still dry!”.

Well… Excuse me!!!

How he just decided to do this after all this time and all the pee… Is a mystery!

But the mystery gets even more clouded when just over a week later, he was back to his old ways. Fll pull-ups, wet bed, sometimes right through to the towel, or sheets.

Since this is very normal and very common, I’m not overly bothered by it. I hope he turns it on again soon, but in the interim He’ll keep peeing and I’ll keep bugging him.

How did they get the caramel in the Caramilk bar?!?

Happy 2nd Birthday to the cutest little girl in the world


Today, I want to wish my daughter, Berry, a very happy 2nd birthday.

Only 2, eh?  You seem so much older with that crazy vocabulary you have had for the past 6 months.  You’ve called me a “dumb dumb”, a “dumbass”, you have asked for things “right NOW”, and you call berries “bey beys”.  Straw-bey-bey’s, rasp-bey-bey’s… He he.

I love the way you say “Oh, my goodness” like you are imitating me in that deep, raspy hockey announcers voice. 

When you’re older I will tell you how we planned on having you at home, but had you in the hospital instead and how we had your grandparents go get your brothers for the birth.  After they arrived, while they were eating cookies and popsicles (after 10:30pm), you were born and Stewie looked at me and said, “Is that it?  Can I go home to sleep now?”… Ahhh Stewie. 

Because of you, we’re done having kids, and where on earth did you get that crazy curly hair?!?  Seriously!

You are quite a party in a package, like Stewie, but you’re a little goofy like Linus. 

You love Hello Kitty (or Hi Kitty, as you call her), and you know the names of all your dolls.  Hmmm. 

You look like your mummy did at that age, and really, after seeing a picture of mummy you thought it was you.  Thankfully, you and the boys all get your looks from your mother! 

Well, now you are two, people will actually believe us when we say that, as opposed to when you were one and people didn’t believe such a friendly, talkative little girl with so much hair could be one year old. 

Happy birthday sweet heart.

 

Look! We made some “Hi Kitty” Cupcakes…


Tomorrow is my daughter’s 2nd birthday party.  Her actual birthday is Sunday. 

When prompted for what she wanted for her birthday, she replied; “Hi Kitty Cupcakes”.

“Hi Kitty” for those of you who have not heard me tell this story a thousand times, is “Hello Kitty”

So last night I made 96 cupcakes and tonight my wife and I set out to decorate them.  Please welcome the Hello Kitty army!

So now we’ve added some decorations, cut some veggies, got fruit, and we’re ready to go.  Tomorrow morning I’ll get bagels for the tuna, egg and cream cheeses, and my wife will make mini pizza’s.  The puppet show is exactly the other thing she wants for her birthday. 

All in all, there should be just under 20 – 2-year-old’s here tomorrow and at least 30 parents.  Can’t wait!

 

Stuff that came across the desk of this daddy blogger…


Here are some random thoughts that have come across the desk of this daddy blogger;

  • I was asked if I wanted my SEO made bigger.  I said no figuring this was another penis enlarger spam message, then I recalled that SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.  Different meaning, same answer… NO.
  • I was asked how I would cover puberty with my kids.  Simple.  Kids, talk to your mother because if I find out, I’ll kill you.
  • Occupy groups… It’s over.  No one cares.  Your credibility went out the window when the unions began speaking for you.  Go home before you catch a cold.
  • BMW drivers, you still are the absolute worst drivers in the world.  Why?
  • After getting teased by Java Joes about their yummy Blueberry Pie coffee, it’s no longer available.   Why?
  • Thank you to Country Style Canada for sending me gift cards.  My staff is going to love the treats just before the holidays.  Share the wealth!
  • Dolph Ziggler = Mr. Perfect.  Love it!
  • Hollywood Undead, Levitate is an AWESOME song.  Find it on YouTube, folks.
  • I’m on Klout… So now what?  I’m also on Google +… yawn.
  • That new song by Korn, Narcissistic Cannibal is also pretty damn good.
  • I’m not sure if the Jason Ellis show is still live, on XM41, Faction, but the last 2 days have killed me.  The one about the worst songs to have a lap dance to was hilarious, and today’s show revolved around the CEO of Faction and there were 5 questions asked to him, Raw Dawg and Cum Fat and when they got it wrong, there was an electric current zapping their testicles.  Oh yes.  Hilarious.
  • I’m about ready to call myself an expert on the new CRA non-resident regulations.  Soon after that it will be FATCA.  I think that’s a good thing, if I could find someone to talk to about it…
  • You know you’re getting old when:  Your kids are looking forward to the snow and you, the parent is dreading it.
  • What until I finish my post on food.  2 weeks now:  No meat, no wheat, no dairy, no sweets and I feel GREAT!
  • The Toronto Maple Leafs won again tonight, 7-1 over the Tampa Bay Lightning.  That puts the NHL scoring leaders as this;  1. Phil Kessel.  2. Joffrey Lupol.  2. Claude Gireaux.   Amazing!
  • I think I’m going to have to add a picture of myself to my blog and come clean.  The more I try to stay low-key and blog under the radar, the more it seems I get readers, followers and asked to do stuff like write posts for people… Odd, this blogging thing.
  • What’s so wrong with the term “mommy blogger?”  I’m a daddy blogger… Daddy… Blogger.  I’m not a writer, I’m just a Dad who keeps an online journal.  Can someone please explain.

http://www.circleofmoms.com/top25/daddy-blogs  Look. I’m on the “Circle of Moms” Daddy Blogger list. Cool. I don’t mind being one of the moms. :)

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