What au pairs don't tell you.
I have a secret. Okay, I have a few.
Before I started a new work-venture, I was an au pair (that’s not the secret). For over ten years, I did what most parents only do for up to four years at a time: I sterilized dummies and bottles, I made alien-poo by blending up various green vegetables, I wiped the bums of children that did not belong to me and I spent a large amount of time in Pick ‘n Pay with kids who wouldn’t let me get through the fruit and vegetable aisle before I’d located a R5 coin, that actually worked, to use in one of the germ-infested kiddie-rides outside of the shop. But I loved them all. (That’s still not the secret).
The role of an au pair is to ensure the well-being and safety of the children. With this in mind, there are some things that your au pair probably won’t share with you, unless your kids happen to recall some of these sneaky antics when they’re older.
I taught the kids to give first-class back tickles…to me
No one gives better back-tickles than a child.
“The amount of time you spend tickling my back, smallish friend, is directly proportionate to the amount of time I spend tickling yours. Unless I fall asleep, in which case, please continue” Always a winner.
Best hangover cure
There may have been a few occasions where I’d had one too many tequilas the night before and told the parents to please excuse my terrible allergies when I came in. After the parents left, I suggested to the kids that we play ‘Doctor and Patient’, (their favorite game). *Insert evil laugh. I, of course, was the patient. My illness? Wine-flu. I lay on the floor and prompted the kids to make me better by surrounding me with pillows and blankets, magic medicine aka orange juice, and loads of back tickles.
The joys of all the PnP Smart Shopper points
Unless you give me your smart shopper card when you send me to do the weekly grocery shop, I’m very happy to use mine, no problem.
One year got me roughly 5400 Smart Shopper points on my card. Thanks, Moms.
When the parents are away, the kids will play
When I say ‘kids’, this includes me. Far too many times have I been close to being caught dancing on the lounge table as I tried to imitate Princess Elsa singing “Let It Go” from Frozen. Expression is very important for a child’s confidence.
Pretending to be mom
Builder’s Warehouse is full of predators. I’ve once pretended that I was Mom, to avoid having to continue an awkward conversation with a guy who was convinced I should listen to his recommendations on the right power tools to buy. I smiled as I watched him walk away, swiftly, after telling him I was the Mother of the children who were playing tug-of-war with each other’s hair next to him on the floor.
Have you ever caught your au pair doing something you'd considered inappropriate?