27 Nisan 2009 Pazartesi

How many hours can you play?

Have you ever paid attention how many hours can you play with kids in a day? And if they are not your kids?

Imagine this!! You wake up and start to play with them before you eat your breakfast. Pay attention no tv for kids!!! So you can not put them in front of the tv when you want to have a rest. Run like a horse or dog, jump like a rabbit, roll down, make different sounds... Actually sometimes it is really fun. Kids make you happy. They just smile at you when they happy. I will not talk in this topic when they cry :) But how long can you play and keep going to talk with them in a day? 10? 5? 3? or 1 hour is enough?

If you are an aupair mostly whole your day. When you wake up you start and when they go to bed it finishes. If you get off before they go to bed then you do not need to talk but if you see them around you how come you do not want to play with them. Also you need to be creative to find them a new games and to be able to entertain them. Because they get bored easily.
So take your time before you really decide to play :)

Nobody said it was easy

Do you know this song from Coldplay? It is really good. When I feel blue, I just turn this on. It helps me.

It has been almost 2 years, But I can not still say it is easy to be an Aupair. And nobody said me it was easy too. Take the children`s responsibility, do what the host parents exactly wants, live with other people even not from your culture, time lag with your country .... Before I came here I said if lotc of girls can do this, I can do this too. Yeap I did it pretyy well but still is tough. You are just alone. Noone is next to you. You can have lots of friend, you can have a boyfriend, you can chat each day with your family.. But you are far from your family and your counrty. You are alone.

The other environmental players just try to cover or fill out your life but it is never like your back life and it will not be in the future. You have friends you have a boyfriend ...you think if you would be in your country would you be this close with those friends and would you have that boyfriend?

The answer is NO!!!

Have a great day.

12 Nisan 2009 Pazar

Gorgeous Sunset of Santa Barbara

It was the second time I was in Santa Barbara and again I was dazzled by it.

Santa Barbara is referred to as the "American Riviera" because its geography and Mediterranean climate are reminiscent of the French and Italian Riviera coastline along the Mediterranean.
If you have chance to meet any family who lives in Santa Barbara, you definitely consider this opportunity. Of course it is not just one criteria to decide your family but it is really important where you live. It can affect whole your America life. First of all you need to look at your lifestyle in your country and you can try to match to similar one in US. For example if you like nature and quiet environment you can live in small town. But if you are social and energetic it can be difficult life for you. Maybe you need to be in big city where you can have lots of friend, social life, entertainment.
This weekend when I was in Santa Barbara, after I saw the gorgeous beaches and sunset I told to myself why I never tought to live as an aupair in Santa Barbara. America's best kept secret is just between Los Angeles and San Francisco. It could be really fun for me. Then I just want to suggest you guys before you match with the host family, be sure you check the place where you will live at least for a year very well. It can be a dream or nightmare for you.

6 Nisan 2009 Pazartesi

You Are The One Who Wants To Be An Au pair In The US?

An Au pair is foreign-national domestic assistant working for, and living as part of, a host family. Typically, Au pairs are young women who take on a share of the family's responsibility for child care, and receive a small monetary allowance for personal use.[1]

This is the formal definition of an Au pair. The most important part of creating this blog is to share the real life experiences about being an Au pair in US. While you can learn all the rules you will see how the real Au pair experienced this life.

You need to follow these below steps to become an Au pair in the US.

1. Au pair Qualifications:

To become an Au pair;

* You need to be between 18 and 26 years of age,

* Experience caring for children,

* Speak English,

* Be a high school graduate, among other qualifications.

* Have no criminal record

* Be in good health

and as an Au pair;

* You will spend 12 months [2] living with an American family,

* Caring for their children up to 45 hours [3] per week,

* In your free time, you can meet new friends and experience life in the US.

2. Finding the right way to apply the program:

There are Au pair agencies in the US. And they have representative agencies in your country. My suggestion is to look on the internet, read the blogs, and comments about the agencies. This is the great way to choose your future Au pair agency. (I will post a US Au pair agency contact list in y next blog.)

3. Au pair Application

Third, you need to prepare a detailed written Au pair application with the support of your local Au pair representative which is in your country. The application includes:

* An essay on why you want to be an Au pair

* Photographs of yourself

* A doctor's report from a recent medical check-up

* A police background check

* At least two childcare references and one personal reference

You can have a personal interview with your local Au pair representative in English.

How do Au pair agencies work?

You apply the Au pair agency which is in your country. They checked your qualifications if you are ok to become an Au pair they send your application to the Au pair agency which is in the US and work with your country's Au pair agency. If the US Au pair agency approves your application, you will be in their agency matching list in a short time to be matched with a host family who is looking for an Au pair and is in their agency matching list.

So, the agencies are both kind of middleman who works between Au pairs and the host families. They help the both side to be matched.

What is host family?

You live with them and you take care of their kids. They sponsored you to be able to come to the US. Generally, they are responsible your weekly payment and your meal. The family who wants to have an Au pair applies the US Au pair agency. And they have kind of same process to become a host family. The Au pair agency screens them. If they are ok to become a host family, the US Au pair agency puts them into their agency matching list.

In the agencies, mostly the possible Au pair candidates do not have an access to contact with the host family before the family contacts with the candidates. First off all the host family needs to contact with the Au pair candidate. Then the candidate can contact with that family. Basically, the Au pair do not have luxury choice to choose the host family, before the host family chooses the possible candidate.

The process basically works like this. If you have more questions pls feel free to contact with me.

[2] You can extend your program one more year without getting new visa. So you can stay as an Au pair max 2 years in the US.
[3] mostly 5 days in a week and half of one weekend day. So you have one and a half day off in a week.

The Dream of America ???

Everything starts with dreaming. Did you dream to be in US? Sounds exciting and interesting, right?

First of all, you decided to come to US. Then you started to look for the ways to come here. Yeap, here it is. You found it, the easiest and the cheapest way to come to US. Wow!! Also, you can leave with an American family. You can improve your English, you can learn American culture, you can travel in the US. Isn't it amazing? But there is one little requirement: `taking care of kids`. Upps !!!
It should not be a problem. You love kids. You have great relationships with kids. You helped to your neighbor's kids child care. You took care of your cousin/brother/sister. Look at you! You have lots of experiences about taking care of kids. Being an Au pair
should be just for you.

If you think this is it, you need to read my next post.

Take care yourself.