Holiday Gifts for Caregivers

by Mary Giles

Holiday Gifts for Caregivers

Stumped by what to give your daycare provider during the holidays? Gifts and bonuses vary widely, depending on your provider, where you live, and your income, says Deborah Eaton, past president of the National Association for Family Child Care, but parents should always acknowledge a job well done, even if it's with a handwritten note of thanks. When possible, Eaton suggests giving something personal—such as a gift certificate for a massage—though money is acceptable. If you don't know how much is appropriate in your area, ask friends who employ the same type of provider. Below, what some caregivers have received.

Darlene Willett, Daycare provider

San Bruno, CA



  • Best $50 gift certificate to Nordstrom


  • Worst Notepads and pencils


  • Standard A plant or candle


Amy Humphries*, Family daycare provider

Tulsa, OK



  • Best Precious Moments figurines for her collection certificate


  • Worst Tie: Package of instant soup and 8-by-10-inch glossy of client's child


  • Standard $25 to $35 gift


Janet Peter, Live-in nanny

Saint Paul, MN



  • Best VCR


  • Worst 3,000-piece jigsaw puzzle


  • Standard Two tickets to a play or concert and a $75 certificate for dinner


*name has been changed