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Skandinaviska Institutet

Amelie, Boston

Ålder på värdbarnen: Kille på 5 och tjejer på 7 samt 9 år.
Har varit i USA i: Strax 5 månader!

What were your reasons for applying as an au pair?
If I’m being honest, I wanted to discover more of the world in a deeper way than just touristing, if you understand. I wanted to really get into a new culture, see the details and get another perspective of our world and life. High school was also over last spring for me and I wasn’t ready for college, which means I needed a break and being an Au Pair in the US seemed (and now I know) the perfect thing to do!

Tell us about your host family:
In my host family there’s a mum, dad and three beautiful, kind, smart and sometimes a bit crazy hostkids. The dad is all American while my hostmum is originally from Sweden, but been living over here since a young age but she still knows Swedish very well. My youngest hostkid is a boy at 5 years old and then two girls at 7 and 9 years old. One loves dinosaurs, the other cats and the third dancing. They all have opinions, legs and a good brains so my days are never boring but instead exciting, fun and memorable. I could never wish for a better host family!

Describe the area you live in:
I live in a very good area right outside of Boston, MA with schools, gym, cinema, cafes, restaurants and shops on walk distance from the house. But also a subway pretty close that is cheap and goes right into downtown which is perfect. A lot about Boston is very similar to European cities which makes at least me happy. There’s a sub, people bike, walk and many buildings are older which reminds you of Europe. All the people I’ve met here are also kind, sweet or just curious about me or my home country.

What does a typical day look like?
A normal day starts with me making the kids lunch which usually is a toast, some veggies and another snack but every Thursday I make them pasta with some hot dogs instead because I think they’re worth it! Then my hostmum or I walk the girls to their school around 8, get back and after that I drive my youngest to last year in preschool at 9. So between 9am and 1pm I have a break where I usually meet friends for coffee, lunch, a walk or I go to the gym. Some days I also have to do the kids laundry, clean the toys during my break but it doesn’t take very long. I do also need to make their beds every morning.

Then I pick up my youngest from preschool at 1pm, we play, but food or go to a playground until 3pm when we pick up his sisters from school. Back home we eat a snack, do homework and play before we have to get ready for the kids activities which they have almost every day. Monday I dance, Tuesday gymnastics and Swedish school, Wednesday violin etc. But activities are just fun!

Around 6pm, we’re back home and so is my host parents which means I’m officially off. But I often stay downstairs with the family to hang out and help with dinner if I’m not going to the gym or meet friends, which happens.

What do/did or are you planning to study and why did or will you choose that course?
I did a travel class to Washington DC in November mostly because I wanted to go to DC and this was an easy way, but I also had some friends that wanted to do the trip so I joined. Then I want to do a travel class to the Niagara Falls, since that seems awesome but otherwise I don’t know. We’ll see if I do something more!

Tell us about the traveling you have done or are planning to do:
I went to Long Island and Nantucket with my host family for long weekends in the beginning of the fall which was both amazing! We stayed at their friends sommerhouses and just enjoyed the environment. Swimming at Long Island, driving in a Jeep at beach on Nantucket and other fun stuff. I also went to Los Angeles, Cali for a few days to meet up my family from Sweden that was there on vacation. Then as mentioned I went to DC for a class (but you’re always discovering the city) and also to NYC in the beginning of December with a friend to see all the Christmas lights, which was awesome!

I want to go to Chicago, Arizona and California again. Otherwise I’m very open to what my friends wants to do, I trust them!

How have you been spending your pocket money?
Some, but never all of it. Since I don’t pay rent, or for food at home I don’t see how I could use all the money. Ofcourse some on shopping or when I hang out with friends but I want to save most of it for traveling, especially in my travel month!

What have you gained during the year?
After almost five months over here, I have so many new friends that I’ll have forever and an extra family that I’ll always have close to my heart. I’ve probably gained other stuff to, but this is the most important for me.

What has been the best experience so far?
Oh wow, I don’t think I can choose one special moment. Everyday is something extra, those laughs you’ll remember forever or that little thing that makes your day. No, I can’t something particular. My best experience so far is this life here!

What do you find most challenging about being an au pair?
It is a lot of work, don’t forget that and it is gonna be a bit hard sometimes. Especially in the beginning, you’re far from home and living with sort of strangers. But you just have to get through the first weeks, then you will get into a rhythm and everything falls to place.

Write a short message to people thinking about joining Skandinaviska Institutet/ Au Pair in America:
Jag minns när jag var en av de tjejerna som läste igenom dessa reseberättelser för att jag kanske ville bli Au Pair och hur mycket jag fascinerades av Au Pairers liv. Tänk att få bo i USA? Hos en familj, jobba med barn men sen kunna resa under din fritid? Wow. Och nu är jag här och det enda jag kan säga är sööööööööök!