Au Pair Moms: Be my päkapikud?

by cv harquail on December 15, 2008

I have a little Christmas wish, prompted by a few comments from you readers over the last 2 weeks or so.

I’m wondering, would you be my holiday päkapikud? elves

What’s a päkapikud?

A päkapikud is a little Estonian elf. Our very first Au Pair, Margit, used päkapikud as a nickname for my daughter.

How can you be a päkapikud?

Help me find our 100th Host Mom subscriber!

  • If you are a host mom, tell your cluster about
  • If you are a Local Community Counselor, tell your LCC colleagues about

Help me find my 100th (or more!) subscriber! Yes, the prize has yet to be earned…..

You probably realize that this blog is not my real gig (that’s, and consulting).

And, it’s only fun to write when the posts engage moms (and dads) like you.

Checking for comments and questions, and seeing what you all advise each other, is what makes doing the blog worth it. (Oh, yes, and pontificating. And cruising Flickr for super sweet images, like this one, below.)

baby w elf

(Don’t you just want to snuggle this little one …)!

I’m thinking– the more, the merrier — so let’s get some more moms involved.

Also, if anyone’s interested in guest posting…. send me a note!

In the meantime, would you be my holiday päkapikud?


Jen December 15, 2008 at 10:09 pm

Just wanted to let you know that I am a LCC and have been telling all my host families to check you out! I found your blog when I was looking for info that was relevant to families and think that what you are sharing is SO valuable for families to learn from your experience and those of your other readers.

cv December 15, 2008 at 11:38 pm

Hi Jen-

Thanks so much for sharing the blog with your families! Maybe one of them will become the 100th subscriber and you both will win a prize :-)

I realized after I wrote the post that another big motivator in writing APM is to let other host moms know that they aren’t alone in either their annoyances or their delights with au pair mom-ing.

There have been crazy things that have happened in our house that ONLY another host mom could appreciate and celebrate, and it just helps to have someone to share with…
cheers- cv

Corey Williams December 17, 2008 at 3:31 am

I’m a soon-to-be host mom (as well as a soon to be third time mom) and your blog has been so helpful to me! I’d love to subscribe! I’m currently working on my au pair handbook and have sent a welcome package (per one of your posts). Our au pair gets here in just four short weeks now and we’re all getting very excited. I’d love any advice on how to make my au pair feel welcome and how to approach the first couple of weeks. Thanks! Corey

sunnyvah December 17, 2008 at 7:26 pm

@Corey: Sounds very simple, but a simple “Welcome”- sign maybe drawn by the kids (even if they just scribble on the paper), some flowers, a clean fresh room and maybe a “shampoo-soap-welcome-basket” (doesn´t have to be expensive… I love Target :D), maybe some chocolate or fruits in her room (as I was very shy at the beginning and felt weird to just go to the fridge- so sth to eat in my room would have been a great thing :P) and a huge smile on everyones face. THAT makes everyone feel welcome!!!!

I think it´s great that you think about these things!

Cynthia December 19, 2008 at 7:49 pm

One of the host moms in our cluster recommended your site, and how I wish I had know about it last year, as we began with our first AP! Keeping my fingers crossed that I’m the 100th subscriber…

I agree with Sunnyvan’s advice to Corey, really simple little things, but they do make a good first impression. We fixed a little goody basket for ours, which included a mug from Starbucks, which has our locale printed on it and a gift card so she could go out for coffee/tea (and get addicted to the “typical American” brand which is now located worldwide!)
Happy Holidays, everyone, and good luck with the tip/off duty (ours is)and normal homesickness issues!

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