WHY BE AN AU PAIR?

Nita, our former Au Pair from South Africa wrote a wonderful post and today I will share a little of it with you.

Nita is very active, she volunteered with the Au Pair friends many times, made a lot of friends and became a buddy to a few Au Pairs. She had an exciting year full of adventures and events. She traveled and explored new places and got very many opportunities with being an Au Pair. Nita met and made international friends with Au Pairs from Germany, Australia, Colombia,  etc

Au Pair volunteering at Bucks County

Nita declared a new definition of an Au Pair. According to Nita, “An au pair is a girl, or boy whatever the gender who is not afraid to leave their home and country to travel another country living with a foreign “soon to be your second family” and being on an endless journey.”au pair from S. Africa Tania 4Nita said that  Au Pair means “ADVENTURE, TRAVEL, EXCITEMENT.Why even consider being an Au Pair? Well, I say: “Why not?” This will probably be the most exciting year of your life. I can not think of one reason you should not grasp this opportunity if you have an open window whatsoever. It is a low priced opportunity in not only traveling but to find yourself along the way.”

She also said, “People think you are throwing those years away, negative. You are gaining years, not losing. At first I was terrified that I would lack behind of all my friends, they might move up in life, getting experiences I might never get to witness first hand. But not only did I kick rock bottoms ass, I got a second chance in life and have this journey to thank for making me more wise as a human being.”

Read more why Nita considered being an Au Pair

 

Welcome Ericka from Ecuador!

Aline, the Au Pair from Brazil, kindly offered to be the buddy for Vanessa and also for another Au Pair from Ecuador Ericka. Thank you, Aline. Here is welcoming post from Aline.

I would like to welcome a new member of our cluster, Ericka. Ericka is 26 years old. She will be here in US on August 20 and will live in King of Prussia, PA. She will take care of one girl, 8 years old and she is very excited to arrive here.Au Pair from Ecuador 1

Ericka answered some questions regarding being an aupair. There it go:

Why would you like to be an au pair? “I want to do the Au pair program because I love babies and kids and in the future I want to have my own Kinder Garden in my country Ecuador also I want to improve my English skills and know more about USA culture.”Au Pair from Ecuador 2

What are your hobbies and interests? “These are my hobbies and interests:recycling, animal care (volunteering at an animal shelter), scuba diving, skiing, bungee jumping, painting, creative writing, dancing, fishing,swimming , watching movies, singing/composing music, birdwatching, photography ,reading, collecting dried flowers, yoga, exercising and body building, participating in marathons, martial arts, recipe creation,traveling and exploration .play with my dogs, volunteering, do social work, teach dance to kids, teach special kids, go to the cinema, watch movies and soap opera dramas from Asia but my really favorite hobbies are singing and dancing ballet or another kind of music I studied many years dance I am a professional dancer.”Au Pair from Ecuador 3

If you had one wish what would it be? “If I had one wish it would be to have my own kindergarten and also open a charity to help kids and babies.”

What three adjectives best describe you? “I think these are the three adjectives best describe me kind, humble and  hardworking.”Au Pair from Ecuador

Which places would you like to visit? “One place that I would like to visit is Disney World or something like that a big park with many people, kids, games, and happiness.”Au Pair from Ecuador 4

What is your favorite way to spend a weekend? “My favorite way to spend a Saturday is with my family in my house, listening to music, watching a good movie or soap opera , or studying online, cleaning my house, visiting friends, go to the mall, or cook for my family or dancing ballet or go to the zoo, all activities depend in the weather, season and mood.”

I guess everybody is very excited to meet you, Ericka. Have a safe flight and enjoy your family so far. See you soon!

Your buddy Aline and Go Au Pair cluster in Philadelphia.

Washington, DC – April 18th & 19th

As apart of the Go Au Pair program, an au pair must complete 72 hours of 6 credit unites over the course of their 12 month placement. With this in mind I signed up for the CULTURAL HIGHWAYS education program which includes 3 classroom sessions at Pierce College, (1x Saturday and 2x Sundays) as well as a tour of Washington, DC. The Washington, DC tour was this weekend (April 18th & 19th) and I absolutely had the time of my life and 100% recommend it to everyone!

Ron Dingman was our tour manager and I hope you are lucky enough to have this wonderful man on your tour! He is so funny and nice and will help you with any question no matter how dumb it may be! (I certainly gave him a run for his money on how many dumb questions he could handle in one weekend).

Our tour bus was departing Philadelphia (30th street station) at 10.10am sharp and I wanted to be on time so I caught the 7:45am train from Colmar statio which was expected to arrive at 30th street station at 8:49am. I only needed a 1 way train ticket which was $7.00.

Upon arrival at 30th street station I met some of the other girls on this trip. They brought snacks and drinks for the long bus ride however as I am extremely poor at the moment I chose the cheaper option which was to go IMG_6010[1]without. In the end I did by 1x 500ml bottle of coke zero which cost me $2.69 at ‘Au Bon Pain’.

We got on the bus and the journey began. There were already other au pairs on the bus who were picked up from places such as New York and New Jersey. We were on the bus for an hour before making our first rest stop At this rest stop I brought my lunch which was ‘Pop Eye Chicken’, I ordered a 3x piece chicken combo which included fries, this cost me, $7.89. After this 30 minute rest break we were back on the road and didn’t stop until 2.00pm for our 2nd and final rest stop at Union Station- I did not purchase anything here as I was not hungry from such a huge lunch!

We left here at 2:35pm to set off to our first landmark which was THE WHITE HOUSE! This was definitely my favourite site of the DC trip! After that we left and went to the LINCOLN MEMORIAL & THE REFLECTION POOL. Both of these were absolutely outstanding! From there we went to the NATIONAL MALL and there we saw the World war 1 and 2 memorial as well as the JFK memorial.

So once we’d seen this we headed to the hotel to check in (We stayed at the Hilton Arlington). The Hotel was absolutely magnificent! Stunning design, gorgeous, furniture, friendly staff and comfortable beds, it was abslolutley perfect!

Essentially I walked in and walked out because a friend I made on the tour wanted to go see a band that was playing called ‘Oh Honey’. The band was playing at the Rock and Roll Hotel and public transport was going to take an hour to get there and so we used ‘Uber’ instead of a taxi/ cab as it was cheaper. The Uber ride was roughly 25 minutes and cost us $20 which is certainly cheaper than any taxi! (Especially as it only ended up being $10 each).IMG_6011[1]

Tickets for the show cost $15 so we purchased those and then went inside, only to find out ‘Oh Honey’ wasn’t playing until 10pm. As we weren’t interested in the opening act we decided to get dinner. We ended up at Impala (just across the road from the Rock and Roll hotel) which was a nice little Mexican restaurant. I ordered a steak with fries and vegetables, with a coke. The meal was fantastic and only cost me $17.90. (Something I will definitely miss when I leave the U.S is free refills!)

We headed to the concert at 9.00pm and listened to the opening act ‘Public’ and then obviously the main act ‘Oh Honey’. I had never seen this band before however I had a really good night and I could not recommend them enough !!

We left at midnight after a meet and greet with the band and caught an ‘Uber’ ride back to the hotel. As it was later in the night and rides were in highIMG_5680[1]er demand the total price ended up being $30, and so the two of us split it, spending $15.00 each. The rest of the night I spent with my room mates.

The next morning we got u

p at 8am as the bus was leaving at 9:15am. I got ready as quickly as possible however did not have time for breakfast which was totally disapointing as I was really looking forward to having something from Ihop for the first time.

We departed with our luggage loaded on the bus at 9:15pm and our first stop was the AIR FORCE MEMORIAL. We spent 20 minutes there before being dropped at the National Mall and being given 3 hours of free time. I chose to see the WASHINGTON MONUMENT as well as the HOLOCAUST MUSEUM- both attractions were free.

Before leaving the girls and I got lunch and sat on the grass to eat it. I got McDonalds from a pop up stand as there was nothing else around and this cost me $5.70.

We departed Washington, DC at 2.55pm exactly only making one stop on the way home where I did not purchase anything as I was well and truely broke and wasn’t hungry anyway.

We arrived at 30th street station at 6:40pm and I waited until 7:11pm for my train home to Colmar station where I drove home from.

This trip is well recommended to all au pairs! The cost of the classes and trip in total is $369 which is coverIMG_6004[1]ed by your host family. You make so many friends, irreplaceable memories and have so much fun! Could not recommend it enough!

St Patrick’s Day Parade

As we all know it was just St Patrick’s day and in the past I’ve never been a celebrator for St Patrick’s day its more just bIMG_0829een an excuse to get drunk which is pretty much an Australian tradition no matter the holiday, but this year being in America and everything I thought I’d get into the spirit and attend my first ever St Patrick’s Day parade.

Never the less on Sunday the 15th of March I headed to Philadelphia to watch the parade! Now to paint a little picture for you all, lately the weather has been warming up, and I was staying at a friends on the Saturday night so I didn’t pack my coat because I wanted to pack light. And so on this faithful Sunday morning with a temperature of below 5 degrees Celsius, all I was wearing was leggings, a t-shirt and a denim jacket. I feel safe in my heart in saying, I have never been so cold in my entire life! It was by far the moIMG_0784st painfully, freezing cold I have every experienced!

So anyways, the day was completely amazing! I love meeting new au pairs, there all as crazy as me which is amazing and have the same nerves and fears as me which calms me down and helps me a lot to know that I’m not the only one!   IMG_0729

Oksana, a new Au Pair from Ukraine

Oksana arrived in her hostamily in the Philadelphia area about 4 weeks ago. She’s 23 years old and our au pair Yoselin is her buddy, who already helped her a bit during her first weeks as an au pair.
Oksana, who grew up in the most beautiful part of Ukraine surronded by the Carpathian mountains,  graduated from University with a master degree in management. But besides her interests in managerical problems she’s interested in other cultures and languages and loves to work with people from different countries.

The main reason why I decided to become an au pair is that I truly love children. I love to see how differently children see the world, and I am happy to be presented with an opportunity to see their development and contribute to it.

Oksana

To develop my personality I always tried to do a lot of interesting things. Some of them are traveling, reasing, handcrafting, cookind & baking and learning foreign languages.

oksana (6)

Before my arrival in the States it was an eventful time for me. I graduated from University and the second child in my host family was born. The third thing – my godson started walking!

Oksana (3)

Responsible, creative, open-mineded – three words to describe herself.

The only thing I can wish for, in this very tense situation in Ukraine, is peace for my country and its citizens.

Oksana

I like to spend my free time with my family and friends. Usually, we go hiking, have BBQ or simply watch our favorite movie together. But one of the most important ways to spend our free time is a volunteer job at the care center for kids with special needs.

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by means of good luck. That is why we have to believe in ourselves, vreate our own lives and then live it!

Oksana (4)

I am very good at making life brighter and more colorful by doing things that make other people happier.

I’m persuaded of being able to be a good au pair, because I’ve always loved children and I had a chance to gain experience with children in lots of different areas.

oksana (2)

The Au pair program is a unique opportunity to experience first-hand the culture and diversity the United States have to offer. It is an incredible chance to make a difference. To learn and to be able to teach, to experience and share the values.

During her previous trip to the Unites States, she had a great experience visiting New York City, Conneticut and Montana. And this time she believes  Pennsylvania will be the place where she can meet new friends and make some unforgettable memories.

 

Oksana, I welcome you again to our cluster! I’m looking forward to meet you soon! I hope you’ll have a great year in the US and that you can do and see as much as possible.

 

 

Tania, another new South African Au Pair

Tania arrived at her host family in Philadelphia about two weeks ago. Tania works as an EduCareAuPair and takes care of three kids, one baby and two older girls. She just turned 21 last Friday – happy birthday again! One of our other South African au pairs, Cherry, kindly offered to be Tania’s buddy.

I’ve already met so many other au pairs living in Philadelphia and its wonderful being able to hear where everyone is from and learning about their families and cultures. I am definitely looking forward to getting to know everyone better and meet more au pairs!

Tania (3)

I like to collect books, especially Stephen King books, and I try to read as much as possible! I studied graphic and web design back in South Africa, so that is another interest of mine and I do photography as a hobby too. Hopefully later in my year I can add traveling to my list of interests.

tania (4)

She characterizes herself as creative, funny and ambitious.

tania (6)

Places I would like to visits are Maine – because Stephen King lives here – New Orleans, New Mexico, Seattle, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and California, Miami, Grand Canyon (Arizona), Las Vegas and Nevada, Washington D.C., and Chicago. 

tania (5)

Two thing I consider to be good at..making pasta and taking photographs.

Tania

My favourite part about being an au pair is spending time with the children and being able to teach them new things, especially about South Africa. I also enjoy watching the children grow and see how their personalities develop. Also just being a part of a new family, learning their ways and seeing how they do things and also learning how to live a healthier lifestyle. I love it.

Tania (2)

I had already the chance to meet Tania at her birthday party last Friday and for a baseball game on Sunday – we had a great time with a few other au pairs! Welcome again Tania to the US and our cluster. I hope you will have a great time here and that you can see as much places as possible. I looking forward to a great time with you and the others!

Natalia Caro, our new Au Pair from Colombia

Even if I posted the last interview only a few days ago, we have way more to publish. July and August are our busy months. After Ana Maria we got another Au Pair from Colombia. Natalia arrived at her host family in Philadelphia this month. Our au pair Karla kindly offered to be her buddy and help Natalia with the first steps as a new member of our cluster. Thanks Karla!

I’m from Bogota, Colombia and 21 years old. I want to share a little bit of my life with you and hope to meet you girls soon.

Natialia

I came to US as an au pair, because I love to work with kids and I want to learn more about other cultures.

In my free time I like to go swimming, watching movies and baking.

Get to know Ariana, my host child, was one of the best things in the last few weeks.

natalia

Natalia characterizes herself as responsible, grateful and friendly.

Her wish is to be able to speak as many languages as possible.

Natalia 2

Places I want to visit are Los Angeles, CA, Miami,FL and Alaska.

Besides my other hobbies I like to travel, shopping and to study.

During my year as an au pair I hope to learn a lot about kids, American culture and to improving my English.

Given that she’s totally new to this area, I hope she can meet a lot of new people here and have a great year in the US! Welcome to our cluster and see you soon!

Nita, our new Au Pair from South Africa

It’s a busy summer for us! Many of our au pairs are leaving and we get new ones!
Two weeks ago a new au pair joined our cluster. Nita comes from South Africa and replaced Stephanie, who went home after finishing her year. It’s the second time that I am allowed to be a buddy for a new au pair! I’m excited to help Nita getting to know the new environment and meeting new people. My first buddy “job” was for Rikie from South Africa and it’s great to help new au pairs. We already did a lot together – for example we spent a weekend in D.C. with Monica and Annie, sad that she’s going back home.
But now back to Nita, she answered my question, which I provide every new au pair in our cluster.

 I love being around my friends, without them my life would be quiet and boring. They absolutely fulfill my life with their laughter and crazyniss.

nita (5)

We are always up to something fun and different. I’m from a farm, so love being outside and love being on adventures as well. Where it’s green I want to be.

nita (3)

 

But just like I love the farm life I love shopping and walking in the malls, go for a movie or just a cup of tee. The people never believe me when I tell them im from a farm. They say im too girly. But a girl needs do doll up right??

nita

I love children, so I see beeing an au pair as a great oppurtunity to work with children.

In my free time I love being with my friends, do horseback riding and riding my bike with friends – doing all kind of trips and races.

nita (4) nita (6)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She descirbes herself as loving , caring and funny.

If she had one wish, it would be to bring back her neffew – she lost him two months ago.

Places she would love to visit are New York City, Vegas, Ireland, Texas. And there are way more she would like to see.

nita (2)

I believe everything happens for a reason, because God has your life all planned out, but there is stuff you can prevent from happening.

I’m good at being myself and doing sports.

I’ve never been to America – this will be a new thing for me. Getting thrown in the deep side, but I am very excited indeed!

I already had the chance to meet Nita – and what should I say. She’s just herself, a sprightly, happy young woman.
Nita, you will have a great year with us! We’re happy to welcome you again in our cluster.

And have fun at your first trip to NYC with the other girls – after the weekend you can tick NYC off your list of places you want to see! 😉

Travel as an Au Pair

Ophelia’s diary.

One of the great benefits of being an Au Pair is that you can travel as much as you want! I used my weekends, paid vacation travelled to a lot places. Also, I had chances travelled together with my host family. I appreciate all of these so much.

IMG_9025

So far I have been in New York, Houston, Atlantic City, Alaska, Hawaii, Washington DC and Las Vegas. I can’t believe I have already travelled so much just in one Au Pair year. I can write all my stories into a book!

Au Pair magazine

What really matters is not how many places you went but what you got from your journey. I harvest love from host family, friendship from Au Pair friends, also my true love during my Au Pair journey.

Au Pair Ophelia photo

Young heart will never stop traveling. It’s great traveling as an Au Pair.

Au Pair love

Read more stories from Ophelia’s Diary.

Why I love Las Vegas?

Ophelia’s Diary.

As I told all my friends and family that I found a new host family with Go Au Pair in Las Vegas. Some people are happy for me, some people start worrying about me.

Au Pair Las Vegas

In the eyes of some people, Las Vegas is a “Sin City”, it’s built on sex and gambling. I have been there two times, that’s not the impression Las Vegas gave me at all.

Au Pair Las Vegas strips

It is a peaceful place and  has very pretty buildings. You can see a lot awesome free shows there. Las Vegas Strips is for tourists, the residents don’t live there. The residents usually live a half hour away from the strips.

Au Pair Las Vegas show

I love Las Vegas a lot because I have a wonderful new host family there, and  also Jon. Some of my Au Pair friends are there. Las Vegas won’t make me lose my faith, I will just have a happier Au Pair year with Go Au Pair.

Au Pair Las Vegas shows

Read more stories form Ophelia’s Diary.

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