An Au Pair Asks

Au Pair Asks: What welcome gifts do Host Parents enjoy?

by cv harquail August 3, 2012

Dear AuPair Mom, I’m European and will soon be flying to the US to meet my Host Family. I’m truly excited. Here’s my question: Nearly all Au Pairs bring gifts from their home city for the new families. For the host kids it’s easy to find something fun, but I’m not sure about what to get my […]

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Au Pair Asks: What if I’m not really prepared to handle these kids?

by cv harquail February 20, 2012

Dear Au Pair Mom, I really love to read your blog, and have been reading it for a few months now, back when I started on my quest to become an Au Pair. And now for the first time I’m writing to you for advice. I have just moved to my host family and have […]

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Would you ask your Au Pair to help out at someone else’s party?

by cv harquail January 22, 2012

Do you think it’s appropriate to ask an au pair to got to your kids’ school and help out at a birthday event there, for someone else’s kids? Here’s the email that prompts the question: Dear AuPairMom – I am mostly satisfied with the family I am working for. We’ve had a few problems but […]

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Holiday Gift Ideas: What could an Au Pair give to an ‘Host’ Uncle? Housekeeper?

by cv harquail December 4, 2011
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I’m so impressed that there are still 19, 22, or 29 shopping days left (depending on the holiday you celebrate), but many of you are already getting organized! Right about when I posted the call for general gift ideas, we received this email from Au Pair MMC. Her gift-giving situation adds four challenges– She needs […]

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Lonely Au Pair Plans Early Departure – Do we approve?

by cv harquail December 3, 2011

Hi there AuPairMom, I was hoping you may be able to give me some advice. I am a 22 year old UK girl working as a AuPair in Germany. I have been here for just over 3 months. When I first arrived I found it difficult but was soon used to the job. The family […]

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Struggling to Communicate With Host Dad

by cv harquail August 5, 2011

Every host parent has his or her own approach to interacting with their au pair. Our personalities affect some of this, but even more important is who has taken which role in the host parents – au pair relationship. When adults team up to become parents, homemakers and breadwinners, they divvy up these roles so […]

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Unbearable Fighting Between Siblings: Fair cause for rematch? (Bettina)

by cv harquail June 28, 2011

Here’s Bettina’s story about her host kids… click back to the original post to discuss whether, if, and how an au pair can make a positive difference in host family dynamics. I’m an au pair in the US for 2 weeks now, and I really like it here. When I arrived, I immediately felt comfortable […]

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Au Pair Asks: My Host Mom wants to get rid of me. … Am I alone in this feeling?

by cv harquail January 16, 2011

Readers, here’s another one of those emails that I just don’t have a good answer for… Can any of you au pairs or host parents offer her some comfort? Hi Au Pair Mom, I am an au pair and always read this blog, to know if I am doing right, to have kind of a […]

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My Future Host Mom’s Sister is Creeping Me Out

by cv harquail November 28, 2010

Okay, “creeping me out” is clearly an American idiom that I have supplied as a headline, but that phrase seems to capture the dynamic going on for this cautious au pair. She’s matched with a family, and getting to know them through emails, etc. before she joins the family in a few months. The family […]

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What to Wear? asks the Au Pair

by cv harquail November 2, 2010

I know we had a conversation a while back when a host mom’s au pair was dressing link a tramp a little “inappropriately”, but I thought we could revisit that conversion from a more positive direction, thinking about what we’d recommend. We received this email from a soon-to-be au pair: I am a 20 year […]

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