• Ultimate au pair blog vacation

    Life on ‘Vacation’ – Part 1

    Now I do not know if this is a European thing but personally as a kid I wouldn't have minded having two weeks off in October, December, February, April and more in summer! This is of course great news for the children in France, but in the eyes of the parents not so great news. This essentially means extra money and organisation needed to ensure that the kids get looked after over these holidays... By Rachel Haynes

  • Ultimate Au Pair Blog RER A

    The RER A Disaster

    When I arrived in Paris I was very impressed with the train and metro system here, not only because it could bring you to most places in Paris but also because it saved my life when it came to getting around. Living in an urban area of west of Paris is great because I can see how people live outside of the hustle and bustle, and the area itself is beautiful with its big houses, roads covered over with trees and the amazing Saint-Germain-en-Laye just one stop away... By Rachel Haynes

  • Week 2: Was coming here the right decision?

    My host mum has been getting angrier and angrier at me for little things, such as putting dishes back in the wrong cupboard, or not making the dinner quick enough. I am really trying to do everything she asks me, according to her high standards. However the more annoyed she gets, the more I panic and do things wrong! I’ve been feeling so overwhelmed by living in a new country... By Rose Dermott

  • Reflection

    I have now been here in Paris for just over a month, after what seems like far more. Congratulations to me!! At this 'milestone' I look back on how my time has been so far. The first month can be described in three words, scary, hard and wonderful. This has most definitely been the scariest thing I have ever done, and considering how it has gone I think I should give myself a pat on the back... By Rachel Haynes

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    Hours and Pay – Practical Advice

    Each family is different and so there will be a lot of variation in days/times, but au pair working hours should be between 25 and 35 hours per week. Some au pairs work in the mornings, helping the kids get ready etc., whilst others start by picking the children up from school in the afternoon. Others may be required to do lunch-times, collecting the children and making lunch, before taking them back to school. Normally two babysittings per week maximum are asked of the au pair and any more should (!) be paid extra... By Olivia Brett (Editor)

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    First Week Almost Finished

    By Rose Dermott I have nearly survived my 'au pair first week' in Paris without getting really lost, missing the last train home or losing my children! I mean, of course the girls I am looking after do have tantrums, they are only five and seven years old! But I am getting better at stopping them from attacking each other. Both their parents are very welcoming and try to help me as much as possible...

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    Homesickness

    By Rachel Haynes Home (Ireland) for me isn't the best place in the world, and I have never been one to miss it that much. Yes of course I miss my family and my friends at home but the area in general isn't one I tend to miss. I left home when I was 18 to go to uni in Liverpool and ever since I have often called it my home, as I very rarely went back to Ireland unless it was a special occasion such as Christmas...

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    How I Changed Families…

    By Sandra Mera Kuzmanović Have you ever wondered if you chose the right family? I did. Three different times. I chose the first family that offered to hire me. I was about to move countries, ticket in hand, when they cancelled our agreement. But I told myself that I wasn’t going to let this stop me from moving to France. So when I arrived...

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    Mum’s the Word

    By Rachel Haynes I recently saw a meme on Facebook that stated 'your mum isn't a mum if she doesn't say she does everything around here' - for the life of me I cannot find it again, but it was something along those lines. Anyway, normally I would like these kinds of things, laugh and think yeah that's so true, because well it kind of is. ...

  • Ultimate Au Pair

    My First Week as an Au Pair

    by Michelle Von Lind Getting to France was so exciting, I didn’t know what to expect but also didn’t want to over think it all before I was able to meet my family. To my surprise I was met at the airport by their oldest son S. aged...