Nanny Jo travels to Naugatuck, Connecticut to help the Cantoni Family. Nina (27), a completely overwhelmed and a disciplinarian mother and Paul (32), a father who gives into the bossiness of their three children. Giana (1), Gabrielle (3) and Nicholas (6). Nicholas who doesn't take his parents seriously, talks back and says inappropriate words and Gabrielle who throws tantrums to get her own way and acts very bossy until she doesn't anymore.
Jo Frost called for help by their mom Nina (27) and their dad Paul (32). They explain their children's bad behaviour and their ages. Jo agrees they need her help and that she is on her way to their house.
When Jo arrives, she introduces herself to the family and they are introduced to her as well. She tells the parents that she observe them and see how they deal with the children.
Soon, Gabrielle hits her mother. She threatens to put her in time out. Then she asks her if she wants to have a pretend tea party. Later, Nina needs to change Gabrielle's diaper. Gabrielle does not want a diaper, so she throws a temper tantrum and yells that she wants daddy. This is because she knows that her daddy will give in and take the diaper off. Soon, Paul arrives home and ends up taking the diaper off, knowing that Gabrielle will throw a temper tantrum in response to Nina. Frustrated, Nina throws the diaper on her bed.
Soon, it's dinner time. Nicholas tries to get Giana to pass gas so he can get attention and spits food on Paul's plate. Nina calls him out on his behaviour. Paul does nothing about it. Later, it is bedtime. Gabrielle keeps getting out of her bed, telling her dad she wants juice and milk, knowing he will give in. Paul keeps having to run down the stairs to pour the drinks for her. While this happens, Nina cries and tells Jo she is overwhelmed.
The next morning, Jo has a meeting with both parents about Nicholas and Gabrielle's behaviours. Then she asks if they are ready to start being on the same team. They say they are ready.
Jo introduces a Family Schedule, noting that it builds in structured family time between Nicholas and his parents. She also brings in a Booster Web Chart to give Nicholas a series of tasks to accomplish, to build in opportunities for his parents to boost him up with praise. Jo challenges Nicholas to change his negative behaviour by showing him that he cannot get attention by negative behaviour. Jo shows the parents how to have more quality time with Nicholas by having him do a puzzle.
Later, Gabrielle throws another temper tantrum because she wants her dad to pick her up. Paul asks her what's wrong. Gabrielle does not respond. Jo says Gabrielle is used to getting her own way when she throws a temper tantrum. Gabrielle bangs her head on the floor continuously. Jo tells the parents to worry out that and to ignore her. Gabrielle tries hitting and biting her. Jo tells Paul how to give her a warning in a proper way and Paul abides. Gabrielle ignores the warning and hits, bites, and shouts at her dad. So, Jo has him place her on the ottoman for three minutes after explaining to Gabrielle why. However, Gabrielle keeps trying to flee. Paul keeps putting her on the ottoman and wins. Three minutes later, Paul explains why Gabrielle was placed on the ottoman and asks for an apology. Gabrielle apologizes and Paul picks her up and gives her a hug and a kiss.
Jo then has Paul and Nina do "Step Up Step Back." This means they sit together and agree on who needs to step up and who needs to step back. As they go through their differences, Nina feels like Paul is blaming her for all the problems. Jo gave an example: Nina needs to step back and give a warning before giving discipline. Meanwhile, Paul needs to step up and only give one warning, then give discipline.
Later, it is bedtime. Jo teaches Paul a bedtime technique (Stay In Bed). Jo reports that she made sure Paul did the technique because he is the one who needed it the most. First step is reading a bedtime story. Afterwards, Gabrielle keeps getting out of bed and Paul puts her back in bed each time and wins. Nina reports she is stunned that Gabrielle went to bed by 8pm. Jo notes that this is a great accomplishment for the parents. Jo tells the parents she will be leaving them for a few days and to follow her techniques.
Nina reports that she is nervous about Jo leaving, because she is afraid the things Jo taught them will fall through the cracks.
After a few days, Jo returns and has the parents look the DVD that has recorded how they followed the techniques well or not. Jo comments on them. When Gabrielle refused to eat her dinner, Nina told her to take two bites of her lasagna by herself. Instead of waiting this out, Paul decided to feed Gabrielle some bites, undermining Nina's authority yet again. Jo explains that they should tell her she needs to eat certain bites and if she refuses, she can leave the table. But if she complains about being hungry later, the parents should just remind her that she chose not to eat dinner and she can't have more food that evening.
Jo notices that Paul neglected to spend fun quality time with Nicholas, thus making him do menial chores like picking up and taking out the garbage. Nicholas cries and complains that they did not do anything fun like Paul promised. Paul thought they could just do the chores very quickly and move on to one-on-one time, but it didn't turn out that way. Jo reminds Paul that one-on-one time is to spend quality time with Nicholas, not to do chores.
Later, she teaches Nina how to give Gabrielle a comfortable bath for a few minutes. If she acts up in the tub, Nina will give her warning; the second time she will be taken out early. Gabrielle did very well in the tub and no warning and consequence was needed. Jo presents Paul and Nicolas with a Guess Who? board game to use for one-on-one time, and they play happily. Soon, it's bedtime. Jo tells the family she has to leave for good. And pretty soon, it's "see ya later suckers!" to the Cantoni family.
Behind the scenes
The episode was filmed in September 2006.
- Paul Cantoni, 32
- Nina Cantoni, 27
- Nicholas, 6
- Gabrielle, 3
- Giana, 1
- Nanny To Naugatuck Family's Rescue - The Hartford Courier, May 28, 2007
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