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Summer Blackhurst - Au Pair ExpertAbout the Author

Summer Blackhurst is the Press Coordinator and Au Pair Expert for Go Au Pair. Summer has extensive experience in working with the Host Families and Au Pairs and has interviewed more than one hundred families and Au Pairs to find out what really matters.

She has been writing for newspapers, magazines, and blogs for more than 15 years and has worked in the childcare field for 20 years. Summer is a believer in the cultural immersion process and speaks Spanish fluently after having lived in Argentina for a year and a half. She specializes in Host Family / Au Pair Relationships, childcare, parenting and cultural exchange.

Helping Your Au Pair Learn Life Lessons during Her Year

In my last blog, I talked about how a Host Family can influence the personality or outlook of an Au Pair over the course of a year.  To that end, if your Au Pair is on the younger side of the spectrum and is experiencing life away from home for the first time, she may also encounter problems and realities she has yet to deal with like money management, responsibility, conflict resolution and effective communication, and the reality of parenting....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/28/2015 8:00:33 AM by Cyndi Frick

Rising costs of daycare has U.S. moms scrambling for solutions

The numbers of stay at home moms are on the rise. Researchers are thinking it is because of the rising costs of daycare particularly for families with more than one child. Hearing this statistic and the more I talk to Host Parents, I’m convinced there is not enough information out there about Au Pairs. Many families don’t even factor Au Pairs into their childcare equation because they don’t know it is an option. Childcare in general can be expensive, but families who know about Au Pairs and compare costs, often find out it is more possible to pay for child care than they had originally thought....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/24/2015 8:00:55 AM by Summer Blackhurst

Influencing a Life Forever in a Year

Do you remember your first adventure living away from home after high school?  Whether it was starting your independent adult life as a college student, backpacking through Europe, or doing whatever it is you dreamed of doing when you escaped the parental regime, those first few years away from home have a major influence on who you will become as a person as you venture out on your own to find out who you are as an individual. ...Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/21/2015 8:00:57 AM by Cyndi Frick

Competitions for Au Pairs Promote Cultural Exchange

Au Pairs play a bigger role in the U.S. than just tending children. They provide a cultural experience for the family and community they live in – that would not be possible if it were not for the program. Go Au Pair goes above and beyond the call of duty to make sure their Au Pairs are really immersing themselves in the culture with the help of our Au Pair Sis Janine Snyder....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/16/2015 8:06:42 AM by Summer Blackhurst

A Personality Type You Want to Hang Out with or One Best for Your Children?

Not all Host Families will struggle with wanting essentially two different personality types for their Au Pairs, but in our household (the household that started off not wanting children), we are struggling to find a good personality balance in looking for our second Au Pair.  On one hand, we want someone who we as parents/adults can relate to, can joke around with, and that we like and want to hang out with.  However, we find ourselves wondering if that kind of person and accompanying personality are fit for what we would want in our children’s fulltime caregiver....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/14/2015 8:00:17 AM by Cyndi Frick

Dating in the USA

Back when I first started the Au Pair process, I thought it was interesting one of the suggested interview questions a Host Family should ask a potential Au Pair was “Are you in a relationship?”  I never gave it much thought since they all said no, but when my Au Pair started engaging men (I say “men” but really, I mean “boys) on Tinder, I started to wonder how her dating could possibly affect her life and ours....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/9/2015 8:00:48 AM by Cyndi Frick

Things I’ll Do the Same and Things I’ll Do Differently When Selecting My Second Au Pair

It may be early in the process, but I’m a big planner, and I am now in the midst of searching for my second Au Pair who will be taking my current Au Pair’s place in September.  Just as we all live and learn, I have lived and have learned from my first hosting experience.  There are things I will look for again, and there are things I will do differently.  Buying our first home, a townhouse, we were so excited about its potential, and it seemed to be the answer to all of our housing issues.  However, five years later, we hated it, and all we could see were the things we disliked and would look to change the next time around....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/8/2015 8:00:50 AM by Cyndi Frick

Moms Are Tired and Au Pairs Can Help

I know it’s cliché to say but being a young mother is one of the hardest job there is - the worry, the exhaustion, the sacrifice. There is no job on earth that doesn’t take more energy than raising children. Finding the right person to lend moms a helping hand during this busy time of life can be a challenge....Continue to Full Article
Posted: 4/3/2015 8:00:41 AM by Summer Blackhurst
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