Hi everyone! As of today I’ve been in the US for exactly 2 weeks. Today it is October 1st (I am writing this around midnight so I guess this post is technically going to be posted on Tuesday haha) and it was Monday September 17th at 6:35 am that my flight from Gothenburg took off and it was also the start of my 12 month long adventure that I had ahead of me in the states. It has indeed been two very eventful weeks and in this post I thought I would write a summary about everything that has happened so far!
Day 1 – September 17 – The Day of Departure:
I got up at 3 in the morning to be able to get to the airport in time for my flight, which was going to be departing at 6:35 am. At the airport I met up with another girl, Alice, who is travelling with the same agency as me (STS) but was also going to live in Minnesota only 15 minutes from my house, how crazy?! We got on the plane and at at 8:15 we arrived in Frankfurt where we were going to have a 5 hour long layover. At this airport we met up with another Swedish girl, Julia, and a Norwegian girl, Selma, who were going to be attending the same dates of Au Pair Academy as us. I’ll give you a brief explanation as to what it is. You spend 3 days in New Jersey/New York and it’s like a preparation camp before your year as an au pair. They give us important information, things that can be good to be aware of and so on, but we also got the opportunity to go in to NYC to explore the city some more! At 1:25 pm our flight to Newark took off. We landed in Newark at approximately 4 pm US time and after we had been standing for nearly an hour in line to get through security we were done, we grabbed our bags and hopped on the bus that was going to take us to the hotel where Au Pair Academy was going to take place. After arriving at the hotel it was nearly 6 pm at night, we checked in and had a brief welcome meeting with AuPairCare (our American organization). After that we met up with one more Swedish girl, Andrea, (Me, Alice, Julia, Selma and Andrea became a sort of group and we spent a lot of time together during our three days at Au Pair Academy. Me and Alice are living in Minnesota, Selma and Andrea in California and Julia in Illinois) and the rest of the evening we really didn’t do much. We ate a delicious pizza you could buy at the hotel but after that people went to bed because it had been a long day with a lot of travelling. But now we had finally arrived in the US and the next day Academy started for real!
Day 2 & 3 – September 18 & 19 – Au Pair Academy
These two days were spent at Academy where they gave us loads and loads and loads of information about everything you can imagine regarding the year as an au pair. I have been filming a lot from these days and I thought I would try to create a video where you can see everything we have been up to. So that’s why I’m not going to write about these days at Academy, instead you can watch the video that I hope to be uploading soon!
Day 4 – September 20 – Off to The Host Families
It is Thursday and today is the day we’re done with Academy in New Jersey/New York and we get to go to the states and cities where are individual host families are living and where we will be living for the next 12 months. After we had had an Academy class in the morning and also lunch, people started to get ready to leave the hotel and go to either Newark airport or JFK (depending on where you were flying out from). There were also a bunch of au pairs that were going to be living somewhat close to the New York area whose host families came and picked them up at the hotel instead. When we had arrived at Academy 3 days earlier, we had been divided into groups, color-coded groups, like pink, black, green and so on. I was in the black group. We left the hotel in these groups because those who had the same color were going to live in the same state. The different groups left the hotel one by one during the whole afternoon. At 1 pm it was mine and Alice’s groups turn to leave the hotel and go to Newark airport. I think we were about 5 people in total who were going to be living in Minnesota, all pretty close to Minneapolis, and we were therefore travelling together. At 4 pm the plane took off to go to Minneapolis and soon we would get to meet our host families and we were all very excited but at the same time a little bit nervous. About 3 hours later we arrived in Minneapolis. We had finally arrived! This is where I was going to be spending 12 months, a whole year, how crazy! We got off the plane and on our way to the baggage claim we got to some sort of arrivals spot where all of us au pairs got to meet our host families! My three host children were standing there, Colin, Rhys and Oscar and my host mom Katie with their tiny American flags in their hands to welcome me. After we hugged and introduced each other we went to get my bag that I had checked in. I also hugged and said bye to all of the other au pairs before we all went with our host families and after that we were off to our home in the city Blaine where I was going to be living (30 minutes from Minneapolis). When we got home I also met their current au pair (Sara from Spain), the girl that had been the family’s au pair this year, (and were now going home) my host dad Jami and their dog Cucumber. I got a very warm welcoming right from the start and also a really good vibe from the family. Now it was around 7-8 pm and after another eventful day it was time to go to bed!
Day 5 – 15 – September 21 to October 1 – The First 10 Days
I thought I would write a quite short summary of my first 10 days here in Minnesota since this post is already very long haha. I came here on a Thursday and during the first few days, Friday-Sunday, I didn’t work, which meant I had time to relax (Au Pair Academy was after all very intense) and get to know my host family and the area. Sara (the Spanish au pair) showed me around the neighborhood and was very nice and sweet and she answered all of the questions that I had. On Monday it was my first day of work, but Sara worked as well because we overlapped by two days before she was going home. This was really nice because I could watch and learn from how she was interacting with the kids and I also asked her a lot of questions about how to do certain things. On Tuesday night we said bye to Sara who was now done with her year as an au pair and was going home to Spain. On Wednesday I had my first day of work all by myself, I also worked on Thursday and Friday but after that it was the weekend and I was then off! During this week I also hung out with Alice and we went to Mall of America, mostly to check out the place. Oh my god… It is HUGE! The mall is one of the biggest in all of America and yes, I could tell. They even had a freaking amusement park inside the mall. Sick haha. During this past weekend on Sunday (yesterday) me and Alice met a bunch of other Swedish au pairs who are living close to us. We ate lunch at Olive Garden and after we grabbed a coffee and talked some more. It was really nice talking to people who are experiencing the same things as yourself, and it was also nice to talk in Swedish for a little bit haha. Today it was Monday, beginning of the work week (I am writing this late at night so technically it is already Tuesday). Today none of the boys had school because it was closed, so I had to take care of all 3 kids for 10 hours, but it went well! I worked from 8 am-6pm, then we ate dinner and since then I have just been laying in bed watching Swedish Idol haha. :)
Oh well, now I have been sitting here for like 1,5 hours writing this post, so I feel like it’s time to sleep. But I did feel like I really needed to recap everything that has happened so far so that I could start blogging in present time! I’m glad now that that’s done. I know that in this post I might have jumped around a little in the story, maybe everything didn’t come out perfectly clear but I promise that all the pieces are going to fall into place as I’m posting more on the blog. :) I’m going to write all of this in English too, but I don’t have time for that right now, so I was thinking that will have to be a separate post instead. If you read all the way to the bottom, good job! Goodnight, have a good day/night and I will talk to you later!
PS: Yes, now it’s technically Wednesday because I’m writing this post so late, but hopefully y’all won’t get too confused. ;)