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"But my husband will cook dinner for everyone, and I try to get my mom's car washed and fill the tank." The Donleys also tackle home-maintenance chores for the grandparents.At the very least, be sure you supply everything your munchkin needs (from diapers to a crib), particularly if your parents will be caring for your child in their home.If Grandma wants to take the baby to the park and feed her lunch there, why not? It sounds like child-star territory, but maybe it's not such an outlandish idea. Newman says, would probably reject payment, but some parents find that token remuneration helps feel better about asking their folks to sit.Kristi Schmidt, a mom of two boys in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, relies on her dad as a full-time sitter -- and gives him 0 every two weeks.Nicki Donley was thrilled -- and relieved -- when her father agreed to care for her girls.

"My dad makes the mistake of asking the kids their opinion when there is no choice, such as when to nap or what to eat for lunch.

If you hire a sitter, you'll hash out the requirements of her job. And no one says anything, so it happens again and she grows resentful. No need to treat your mother like an employee, but you do have to be forthright, says Amy Mc Cready, founder of Positive Parenting Solutions, an online resource for behavior and family issues. For instance, your mother may figure, "I left you in the playpen, and you turned out just fine." Disagreement can lead to power struggles.

"Hold meetings to talk about how the baby is doing and what your plans are for the upcoming week." That way, if there's an issue Grandma needs to discuss (you keep forgetting to restock the diapers) or something that's bugging you (your mom hasn't been sticking to the nap schedule), you can bring it up rather than let it fester. Remember that rules involving sleep safety should be nonnegotiable.

The average age of retirement is 62 -- so grannies and grampies have a whole lot of working life still in them! ) But with your parents, you can skip all that; after all, you're , knowing your folks will feed the baby.

)At a day care, you're expected to bring the wipes and pick up your child promptly. Meanwhile, Grandma is seething over missing her book club.

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