Lily has come to the end of her maternity leave, meaning her and Marshall have reached the point of desperation in their search for a nanny, when they finally find the perfect one: Mrs. Buckminster (played wonderfully by Jane Carr.) She’s everything they hoped for and more. She’s the typical caring nanny, with a calming manner and a soothing British accent to top it off. Unfortunately there’s one small problem: her salary is far enough out of Lily and Marshall’s budget to make them break down in tears.
A few days before this nanny search, Mickey showed up unannounced at Lily and Marshall’s door. His garage had been exploded by a bunch of Mexican fireworks and his house burned down. Now he’s living with Lily and Marshall yet again, and throughout the whole nanny search, Mickey insists that he can look after baby Marvin.
Lily is obviously opposed to this. Despite slight moments of reconciliation throughout the years, it seems Lily will never completely get over her father’s absence during her childhood. She’s able to tolerate Mickey living with them for the time being, but the thought of leaving her child in his hands is still horrifying.
So, the search resumes with a list of candidates from a nanny website. The problem here is the severe under-qualification of these candidates. There’s one who has zero experience other than looking after the cats at her rehab clinic (only 2 died) and another who when asked how she feels about spankings replies “for 8 bucks an hour, you can do whatever you want to me.”
Finally, Lily and Marshall find their match. Julie is from St. Cloud, Minnesota, meaning Marshall knows her father and brother, and they get along like any good Minnesota folk should. Lily also approves, and when the moment of truth comes, her salary is right in their budget. They think they have her locked up, but she has one more interview to check out.
A few hours later Julie calls back to say she won’t be taking the job. When they ask if she’s taking the other job, Julie says she isn’t, something even better happened, she fell in love and the next day is leaving for a “legen-waitforit-dary” trip.
That’s right, Barney’s brilliant idea was to seduce women by posting an ad as a single father on heynannynanny.com and concluding his interviews with his extra special check of their qualifications. One of his many victims was, of course, Lily and Marshall’s chosen girl.
They storm to Barney’s apartment to demand he tells her the truth. Julie realizes that if they’re friends with someone as horrible as Barney, there’s no way she can work for them. It’s then when Barney reveals his best scheme since The Playbook. He would have the nannies interview, including a demonstration of bathing techniques, before letting her know he’d be unable to hire her since he was attracted to her, and it just wouldn’t be right. Oh and what happened to the baby’s mother? She died from too many consecutive orgasms. Barney blames himself.
To try to make up for taking away their nanny, Barney pays for Mrs. Buckminster and lets Marshall have the double looped racetrack he so greatly adores. However, when it comes time for Lily to give up Marvin and head to work, she’s unable to, finally shouting that she can’t give her baby to a stranger. She retreats to the nursery where she falls asleep with Marvin in her lap.
When Marshall returns home from work and wakes Lily up, instead their child in her hands, she’s cradling a stuffed monkey. They freak out, and run into the living room to try to find Marvin.
At this point the door opens and Mickey walks in pushing a stroller. He then tells them about how he took care of the baby all day and it’s revealed that he was a stay at home dad, totally taking care of Lily until she began preschool. It was at that point his gambling addiction began and he was no longer the quality father he was in her earliest years.
It’s here that we get the biggest reconciliation for Lily and Mickey to date. Mickey shows Lily a photo album that he saved from his burning house with photos of her until she was four-years-old. Lily realizes that Mickey’s love for her isn’t just an adult maturation, but that he’s loved her since the day she was born, and he just made some mistakes in the past. I still don’t think Lily will ever completely forgive Mickey for the things he missed in her childhood, but I expect their relationship will greatly improve from this point on.
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