1. Jen

    I would offer the number of your kennel, babysitter, repair person and house sitter. This would be a polite way of saying: we don’t use our neighbors for these services. Perhaps they will get the hint and ask a family member to come over and lend them a hand or actually hire someone! Also, if they have become used to using your services, let them know that you will have company that week or be out of town.

  2. In this case, I think a little white lie is necessary. You can simply say: “Oh, I wish I could help, but I am going to be so busy that week, that I just can commit myself to you. Would you like me to ask around to get some phone numbers for you to hire someone in to help you?” Then, even if she says no, get a list together, put it in an envelope and leave it at her door while she is gone. She will get the hint!

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