Adventures of an Au Pair: unexpectedly overwhelmed

unexpectedly overwhelmed

por | |
Now this... I wasn't expecting. The amount of emails I have received from au pair sites is overwhelming! Since europe is 6 hours ahead of me, I've been waking up to so many notification emails from websites I've joined. And if you know me... you know mornings aren't the best times for me, in any aspect. So organizing and responding to the emails often gets overruled by the other important things in my day. Keeping track of the different families has been the hardest part right now. And it's even harder because I haven't quite settled on all the not negotiables, the things that I won't even consider working without. So far I know that I want..

  1. Easy access to transportation. One of the main reasons I'm doing this whole au pair thing is to see different countries and places throughout Europe, and not to be stuck in a remote part of the continent without any way to get around.
  2. A higher than normal salary. Not to toot my own horn, but I've had a lot of experience with the kiddies and think my salary should be commiserate with that experience.
And that's about all I got figured out. I don't think I realized how DIFFERENT each family listing is. I mean duh, of course all families are different, but some jobs have this but not that, etc. It certainly makes things harder for me to wade through. I have faith, though, that the perfect position will come along and I'll know it when I find it. Hopefully. :)

So, what I've done to organize myself... starting with the wonderful gmail. I created a bright pink "au pair" labeling system, which is a life saver. Even if I can't do anything else right away, I can slap that pink sticker on an email and then I know I can easily find it later to go back to. In addition to the pink au pair label, I also made a "no" label so I can know what emails to ignore. Cut-throat, right?
Exhibit A.

 I've also started an excel spreadsheet (praise the Microsoft gods) to keep track of families that I've begun communication with and are seriously interested in. So far, not many families are on the list, but hopefully with this most recent emailing spree I went on I'll be adding more families soon. 

So that's where I'm at right now. Thankfully I started my search early enough that I don't feel pressured time-wise, but maybe this week will bring some progress!



Bonjour, Megan
(That's the extent of MY French!)
Found your site via and I wish you the best. Love your email labeling idea and the spreadsheet approach--that's what we've done when trying to keep track of interviewees for our AuPairs. Sounds like you've got the right attitude--hope your time abroad is all you hope it will be and that you get to see beaucoup de France (OK, so I took one year in college, but I was really a Spanish major, and got to spend my junior year at the Univ. of Madrid - the most fantastic experience ever).
Cynthia, a vintage AuPair Mom

Post a Comment