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We asked our families to nominate their au pairs for our annual au pair of the year award earlier on in the year, and we were really happy to see so many families take their time to write lovely stories about their au pairs.
The award is there to acknowledge the work of au pairs - and to say thank you :)
The difficult part in every competition is selecting the one winner - this year, the winner was Trine Rasmussen from Denmark (her story will follow in due course).
However for now, we wanted to highlight all the lovely things our families said about their au pairs so here are a few select snippets from the runner up entries - all au pairs who were nominated also receive a personal thank you note from our team!
Lisa on her au pair Maria (Danish au pair, 21):
"Despite her years, Maria is so methodical and mature in her approach to her job, but has a natural maternal softness which makes her a fantastic carer and a great friend to my children – they adore her and she makes them feel valued."
She is my angel, we found such a gem in Maria and are so grateful that she chose to come into our family – we dread the day that she leaves us to go on to her next adventure but don’t doubt that she will be enormously successful in whatever it is she does.
Louise on her au pair Alex (German au pair, 19)
Alex has made a difficult period of change in my life so much easier to manage. He takes Isaac to school on the bus every morning, collects him each afternoon and keeps him entertained until I arrive home three hours later. The pair of them have wonderful adventures during their afternoons together. I’ve come home from work to a house full of cookies, or a train set that has been hacked to carry food from the kitchen to the living room, or a set of homemade Christmas cards. Alex feeds into Isaac’s love of invention and exploration and encourages him in his curiosity.
Murray on his au pair Lieke (Dutch au pair, 19)
She has been a friend not a au pair and the kids love her. She has a very bubbly nature, always smiling very polite always willing to help. I feel I have known her for years.
Marie on her au pair Nimet (German au pair, 20)
Nimet genuinely enjoys looking after our daughter, whom it is evident has developed a close and loving bond with her, which we are confident will continue for many years to come.
It is so lovely to return home from a long and weary days’ work to see a happy child, a happy dog and a nice, clean home.
We truly do appreciate all the hard work that Nimet does to help our family. We see her as a member of the family and feel so lucky to have an au pair as wonderful as she is. We can’t imagine how we coped without her and feel that we will remain good friends for many years to come.
Marta on her au pair Franzi (German au pair, 19)
Most importantly Franzi is enthusiastic about the work she does, always volunteers with tasks, and is always willing to help. Franzi does everything so well and fast. For us Franzi is the best! I am dreading the time when Franzi would have to leave us to go to a university. One thing is for sure -- Franzi you have a family in London that will always be very, very happy to see you!
Puja on her au pair Lisa (German au pair, 19)
When I come home from work the kids are fed and ready for bath time and bed. Everything runs smoothly with Lisa, which makes are home a happy home.
She is great with the kids, ensuring discipline and good manners but can still have fun with them.
Sally on her au pair Verena (German au pair, 19)
And all I have to say is Verena is going to read Harry Potter and they run to get their pyjamas on, then sit quietly together, completely content as she reads them the next thrilling installment (we could never get them interested in Harry Potter, though we tried for years).
Vanessa on her au pair Kathrin (German au pair, 18)
It was just so nice to see how our 10 months old child jumped into her arms when she got back from Christmas holidays, and our 5 years old was asking for her everyday that she was away, couldn't wait to get her out of the car on her return. Of course he also prefers when she picks him from school rather than anyone else, they seem to have a special bonding. She enjoys playing with them, playdoh or legos, and she is very patient and gentle with our baby, who loves being in her arms too.
Overall, we are loving the au pair experience, and I think Kathy s personality really helped to make everything easier. It is our first au pair, and we will be looking forward to have many more different experiences with other au pair in the future, but it will be hard for all of us to say goodbye when times come.
Liane on her au pair Sophie (Australian Au Pair, 22)
"She's almost like a 'cool aunt' to the children - sensible enough to look after them but close enough in age to hang out, laugh, and watch silly videos. She's taught them a lot about the world, both traditional facts but also savvy about growing up with the challenges and opportunities of today's digital world."
If you would like our help in finding an au pair - please visit www.smartaupairs.com or call 0330 111 9266