Lisa and Martin, from Australia. Looking for help from 1 Aug, 2016
Au pair wanted for couple in Sydney, Australia, to help with 5 year old boy & 3 year old girl while Mum works from home.
Hi, we are Lisa & Martin, we are a British couple who moved to Sydney 6 years ago. Our boy Fred is 5 years old and a very bright little bookworm, and we have a girl, Tess, who is 3, and is funny, cheeky and great at hugs. We live in St Ives, a 20 minute train ride from central Sydney, but the area is surrounded by bushland and 15 minutes from the beach, so I wouldn't really describe it as 'big city' living. It has good transport links to get around. We are both self-employed, Martin works out of the house most days of the week but is a very hands-on Dad in the evenings and at weekends. I have an office at home and can generally do my work on a flexible basis, but have to make sure I find that time one way or another....
We have had 10 au pairs so far and have really enjoyed having them as an addition to our family - it's worked really well for us, provides an extra pair of hands and it's great to help someone see a bit of Sydney and hopefully love it as much as we do. We also had a boyfriend/girlfriend couple who stayed, and also 2 friends who shared the job for a while, so we are open to different set-ups which we can easily accommodate in our house.
We need a confident, capable and proactive au pair who can step into the role without loads of supervision, and keep the children busy and entertained. Both Fred and Tess are at daycare 2 days a week. The au pair is required to get the children up and ready in the mornings, and prepare the things they need for the day.
Our usual schedule is:
Monday - both kids out with Martin & au pair;
Tuesday - both kids out with Lisa & au pair;
Wednesday - Fred at daycare, Tess out with au pair (back by 1.30pm for her sleep);
Thursday - Tess at daycare, Fred out with au pair;
Friday - both kids in daycare, day for cleaning, shopping, cooking (whatever needs doing). Usually try to finish early!
So the au pair will not have sole care of more than one child when out of the house, which is a good thing really as they tend to head in opposite directions :-) The kids love to go out to parks, softplay, swimming, the beach etc - there are lots of great places to go and things to do. Our au pairs have created a file over the past couple of years so it's easy to get started and find your way around.
We discuss the schedule each week as it changes - occasionally sole care will be required for both children whilst in the house, but usually only a few hours at a time (and usually afternoon whilst one is asleep). The job is Monday to Friday, with weekends off, but we would also require evening babysitting once a week so Martin and I can get a bit of time together (it's usually less than this and we would try to avoid weekends if we could so you could do your own thing, and the kids would be asleep before we leave).
You would need a full, clean driving license, some cooking skills and the ability to wash clothes without shrinking them. We need someone who is an organisational wizard otherwise the house descends into chaos. We all pitch in to do a bit of cleaning so there is light housekeeping to do, tidying, and some cooking. We have found we don't necessarily need someone with experience with children, we look for someone with a patient and caring nature, a good sense of humour - and we can easily teach them the rest. We are pretty easy-going, non-religious and non-smoking. You have a large double bedroom with walk in wardrobe and share a bathroom with the kids. We live in a 5 bedroom house, a short driving distance from the shops and the park and a 15 minute drive to a couple of big Westfield shopping centres.
You must be able to drive and to swim, as the job involves taking the kids out and about to pools, playcentres, parks etc. Please don't apply if you are under 22 as we can't get car insurance for you. You would have use of a car in the evenings and at weekends.
Our current au pair will finish in mid-July but due to our holidays we are looking for someone to start in early August, but for the right person we can be flexible by a few weeks. If there's anything else you would like to know just send me a message.