Posts Tagged ‘AuPair’

I am talking today about what got me into blogging and more into doing something I love – using social media networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Linked In.

I have been lucky enough that my company, Cultural Care AuPair, offered me the opportunity to take Ann Evanston’s Social Networking Coaching Club bootcamp. This course has changed my life and has enabled me to break free of the constraints of living in a fairly remote area and of a dislike of ‘sales’.

The course has taught me how I can build relationships online and that that can eventually grow my business and also find some great friends along the way. Through this I hope I know I will  find many families for whom hosting an AuPair is a great option for childcare.

I hope that some of you will be inspired to take a a look at Ann’s bootcamp and not miss out on this great opportunity to get a lifetime membership for half the price it normally costs. I know I plan on becoming a lifetime member and I have also become an affiliate because I believe in Ann’s coaching so deeply.

Are you inspired to take a look? What do you think? Have you already taken Ann’s bootcamp and if so would you like to  share your experiences to add to mine?

I wrote in this earlier blog post how I overcame a whole load of fears and learnt to ski at the age of 49. Well, ever since then I have decide that there are certain things I am going to make myself do before I am too old to do them – my bucket list I guess. The main one on the list was to try something that the very thought of has always terrified me – to ride the zipline at Park City Mountain Resort. I had seen these things on TV and, since I’ve always had a fear of heights, thought that this would be a big no no. However, having overcome that fear to a degree whilst learning to ski I began to think maybe, just maybe I could do this.

I did, however, have a feeling that I might chicken out so I told my husband and girls that I was going to do it and to make doubly sure I arranged my August AuPair meeting at the resort so that some of my girls would do it too. Funnily enough, turns out most of them wouldn’t do it as they are just like I was at their age – over fearful but there were other things to enjoy at the resort so it made for a fun meeting.

Anyway – having husband, two daughters and my AuPairs there meant that there was now no way I could chicken out so I bought my ticket and Natalie from Austria and I decided to do it together (thanks Natalie – I love you!). By the time we reached the line at the top I was beginning to get nervous and as our turn came I was wondering if I could back out there but I just though ‘stop it!’ – you HAVE to go through with this. I was shaking as the guy strapped me into the harness and then he flipped the lever to let us go.

Well all I can say is WOW!!!!! It was an amazing rush from that first second. I loved every moment of it and Natalie and I are now planning on doing a longer, faster zipline at Utah Olympic Park. As an older Mum I am so proud of myself for doing this. My husband and daughters loved seeing me get such a rush from it and I feel I proved to my AuPair group that I’m not an old fuddy duddy at fifty :). I think the pics show how much I enjoyed it 😀

I finally feel at the age of fifty that I can do ANYTHING I choose to do. Tell me your stories of overcoming or facing up to fears. Or what’s on your bucket list? Do you have anything you feel inspired to just get on and do after reading this?

Many of us Mums work at home (or are WAHM’s) because we want to stay at home with our kids and raise them. Is it an easy option? No way man! Some days you feel that you are being pulled a million ways and the school vacations are the hardest. Some people choose to get a little extra help such as having an AuPair and some use camps etc. And some go it alone. I thought I’d do a list today of all the things I fit into just one day, though no two days are the same,  just to show what I do!

  • Answer and delete emails whilst chatting to my program director on Skype
  • Check Facebook updates
  • Check Twitter
  • Post recently prepared blog post
  • Start to prepare next blog post
  • Brainstorm other blog post ideas
  • listening to audio book of ‘Trust Agents‘ by Chris Brogan and Julian Smith while doing other things
  • kids wake up –
  • friends kid arrives so my 10 yr old can watch her for an hour
  • friends kid leaves – play date arrives for youngest
  • Update Facebook Business page
  • Put load in washer
  • talk to guy building fence about gate hinges
  • Wait! Realise haven’t had breakfast!
  • Post transition AuPair onto my website and onto Craigslist
  • Got distracted from breakfast so have early lunch
  • Empty dishwasher while making kids and me lunch
  • Load dishwasher and clean up kitchen after lunch
  • Put clothes in dryer
  • Update my business website some more
  • Youngest going to pool with friend, get all her stuff together and sunscreen her
  • Take eldest to music lesson
  • Run home and start doing some work on Social Networking Coaching Club with Ann Evanston stuff
  • Pick eldest up from music lesson
  • Dryer finished – fold clothes quick so I don’t have to iron
  • Put clothes away
  • Youngest phones and asks if friend can come for sleepover
  • Quick rethink on dinner for 5 not 4
  • Start dinner
  • Hubby arrives – needs to talk a lot about his day in his new role
  • Try to be as attentive as possible while feeding 3 kids and getting them helping lay table etc
  • After dinner do some more work on blog post ideas (and yes this is part of my work!) whilst watching So You Think You can Dance
  • Watch news a little
  • Forgot about fielding all the ‘can we have’s’ etc between all this.
  • Fall into bed and read latest book Olive Kitteridge for 1/2 an hour
  • Sleep!

And this was on a day that I didn’t do any cleaning or meet friends or go to the gym!!!!

What’s you day like? Is it as hectic as mine? Tell me about your life.

My youngest daughter, just turned 10, when asked what she wants to be when she grows up says ‘a mum’ – well actually she is now saying a mom unfortunately ;). Thinking about this led me to think about what influence I, as her mum, have on her and her sister and the whole nature versus nurture debate.

Youngest looking very comfortable with my BFF's baby

I sometimes feel guilty in this day and age for being a SAHM who has never really pursued a career. I wonder what I’m teaching my kids and I often tell her that she needs to find a career before she becomes a wife and mum. But does she? She is a natural around babies and kids just as I was as a kid. I always babysat, I was an AuPair for 5 years, did daycare in my home and always wanted to be a mum. Have I taught her this or was she born this way?  Oh the guilt of it all – lol

Well, I would feel guilty except I look at my eldest who is 12 1/2 and she is totally awkward around babies and young kids and wants to work in  movies as an actress, stylist or costume designer. Whoa! Where did that come from! Nothing in her upbringing instilled this into her she was always that way inclined – we have encouraged it but it’s innate.

Eldest looking rather less comfortable 🙂

So, back to my influence. I’m hoping I am showing them that they can can have it whichever way they choose. I may not have had a career as such but I always worked and provided for myself until WE decided I would stay at home with the girls. Even then I always did something to bring some money in and for my own self esteem. I did the daycare, I ran an ebay shop in the UK and I did some party plan direct selling in Australia. Now they see their mum working her butt off to grow her own business as a Coordinator for an AuPair program so it’s not as if I have sat around dusting and watching soaps all day.

I married a great Dad who allowed me to be the mum I wanted to be by taking on the responsibility of providing for us. Sure we took ‘traditional’ roles to a degree but mainly because I REALLY wanted to be with my kids.

Anyway – the upshot of this rambling is that I think nature way outweighs nurture. Both my kids have the same parents doing the same things and bringing them up the same way and one wants to be a mum, primarily, and the other wants a career in the movies.

What do you think your influence is on your kids with regards to what they want to be when they grow up? Do you think you have any or that their talents and wishes are innate?

Having spent my early twenties wasting time waiting for a go nowhere boyfriend to marry me we broke up (well actually he went off with someone else and got married) and I was heartbroken.

So, I decided to break out of the mundane and have an adventure to ‘find myself’. I’d always done a lot of babysitting so I decided this was a good way to see some of the world and work. I bought The Lady magazine and applied for an AuPair/Nanny job in the most remote place and unpopulated place I could find, Fort Qu’Appelle, Saskatchewan, Canada

I had a fantastic time! I looked after 3 kids, Alice, 9; Thomas, 6 and Douglas, 5 and had great host parents Sue and Dick (Richard).

Fort Qu’Appelle is a small town of around 2,000 people called. However, strictly speaking I lived in B-Say-Tah which was outside Fort Qu’Appelle on Echo Lake and had a population of around 200. Fort Qu’Apelle is in a valley in the Prairies and even has a ski area which is where Tom, who was one of the boys I dated there gave me a ski lesson of sorts before my disastrous trip to Banff .

I think I was probably a bit of a nightmare in many ways as I was a bit of a party girl spending most off my ‘off’ time in Trappers Saloon. But the family seemed to love me anyway as I worked as hard as I played and I loved those kids as if they were my own. We’ve kept in touch ever since and I plan on taking my family to visit them at some point now we live in Utah. One of my ‘kids’ has even recently had a baby so I now feel like I’m a Grandma!

I learnt such a lot in that year. I learnt that I love to travel, I love children, I love living in the open spaces of the mid west and I love the independence of striking out and going somewhere I’d never been before. Being an Au Pair was one of the most fun times in my life (and I’ve had a lot of fun) and I did it for 5 years so there’s a lot more to talk about on the subject and it’s the reason I became a childcare coordinator for an AuPair program when I later moved back to the US with my own family.

I wonder sometimes where I’d be if that boyfriend hadn’t gone off and married someone else. I may never have left Derbyshire and I wouldn’t be the person I am today. From that I’ve learnt that life is what happens when you’re making other plans, as John Lennon once said, and that even when your life seems bleak good usually comes out of it.

Have there been any pivotal moments in your life where you have gone in a completely different direction to that which you planned?

Since my interview with Ann Evanston for her Warrior-Preneur Facebook Fan of the Week I have been unable to stop thinking about our conversation about limiting beliefs where I said my deepest one is that of feeling ‘not quite good enough’ to succeed in business. In the interview Ann said that there are two types of fear – fear of failure and fear of success and I’ve been trying to decide which mine is and I think it’s the latter.

I’ve since been reading a little about fear of success and have been trying to decide why I feel this way a few things I read in the linked article resonate for me – particularly this part ‘You fear the changes in your lifestyle that will accompany your success: the loss of privacy, the decrease in time for your loved ones, the need to travel a lot, meet new people, be more on the move.’. Some of the other ‘symptoms’ of fear of success also resonate a little but I think this one is my biggest symptom.

I think for me it’s all about redefining how I look at myself having been a wife and Mum for so long now. Sure, I’ve always worked from home but I can see that I sabotaged some of those efforts myself really though it didn’t help that we kept moving countries and that I hadn’t found something that really clicked for me. When I first became a Coordinator for Cultural Care AuPair I just thought it would be a nice little job working for myself that would just keep me busy while my daughters are at school. However, as I gradually started to love the role more and more I started to want to really go somewhere with this.

I have no idea why I feel this way as my husband and daughters are very proud that I have found work that I love and that I’m enjoying so much. I think I have been finding it hard to change to looking at myself as a business woman but I’m now using  positive self talk to change that around and also meeting other business women more and more who, I’m finding, are mostly just like me – not all driven super women.  Like the article says though – ‘Confront your fears, speak to them, give them a face and the death of fear is sure’ and do you know something – I am feeling better already about this now I’ve thrown it out there. Ann Evanston you aren’t only teaching me about Social Media but your bootcamp is life changing therapy for me and I can’t thank you enough.

What fears do you have that you need to confront and how are you going to do that?