Any au pair with any sensitivity to the host child under her or his care should get that host child something to mark the child’s birthday.
It doesn’t have to be expensive. It can be something as simple as a specially-selected yet store bought card with a photo insider. But, no, you Au Pair’s shouldn’t spend much money on a gift for your host kid. Host parents know not to expect au pairs to spend lots of money– we know how much you’re paid, and how much things cost.
It can be heartbreaking for a child (or an au pair) to think the a person who spends so much time with them has somehow forgotten or overlooked them on their special day.
Here as in just about everywhere else, it’s the thought that counts more than anything.
I know that au pairs do not earn a lot of money, but I expect an au pair to acknowledge my child’s birthday with even the smallest and cheapest of gifts. An au pair who knows my child would easily find $10 worth of things in Michael’s that my daughter will be very happy to receive. Our first au pair was with us for 1.5 months when my older daughter’s birthday came. She did not get her anything at all. Not even a card.
Most recent was my younger daughter’s birthday. Au Pair gave her a pillow pet that my daughter was craving, she baked her a cake from scratch (made frosting from scratch too), got her 6 fancy mylar balloons, one for each year of her age. The pillow pet is the most favorite toy now and the balloons are still around the house 1.5 months later, although they are seriously lacking in helium.
I just want to add, that although our current au pair gave all of us gifts for our birthdays and cards for other holidays and they were all very appreciated, I did make it clear that we, host parents, do not require or need any kids of gifts. She should really spend her money on herself. She did not listen to me.
Has your child ever been super-delighted by a birthday card or gift from your au pair? Or some other special gesture that celebrated the child?
Images: Happy Birthday Banner, by Devany on Etsy