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2017, Au pair

Good morning!

I have had problems knowing what to post here since I pretty much do the same thing everyday. Nothing new to rapport... but you don't really know what I do all day, except taking care of the boys. So here is a treat for you (not so much), a photo collection of my day! Enjoy! :)

6.10am Waking up

6.30am I start working

6.40am Waking up the boys

6.45am Breakfast time

~7.00 Emptying the dishwasher and cleaning up in the kitchen

Cuddling with Bo is an important step in our morning routine!

7.35am Drive to the boys' school

On Tuesday's and Thursday's, I drive into Downtown where CSCC is, to attend my own classes

Putting on my make up in the car in the parking lot because I don't want to get up earlier in the morning just to do it...

9.30-10.50am Class

Drive home and do whatever I feel like doing that day + some laundry

Going on a walk with Bo

My daily visit to Target ended up, like always, with me buying things I don't need

3.30pm Picking up the boys from school

~4.10pm Snack time!

~4.30-~6pm Helping the boys with their homework

6.30pm Dinner

7pm Cleaning up after dinner

7.30pm I'm done for the day

After I finish, I sometime study, watch a movie, read, or meet up with Victoria, which was what I did yesterday. We went to Cold Stone Creamery (an ice cream place) :)

10pm Home again

Depending on how tired I am, I either go to bed or watch a movie.



So... that's my day. This repeats itself Monday to Friday. On the weekend the schedule is slightly different but still kind of the same things. Except on Sunday's when I'm off.

I hope you enjoyed this insight in my glamorous life here! Even though it might not seem as I'm doing that much, the days fly past in super speed... I can't believe I've been here for three months already! 1/4 of my year is done. It's insane... The boys have already started talking about how sad it is that I will go home soon. Personally, I wouldn't say soon because I still have nine months left! Haha! At least it's really sweet that they don't want me to leave :)

❤ Philippa

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2017, Au pair

The last day of my weekend off was spent studying, reading, and going to a museum. Although, the studying did not go that well... I was too tired, but I finished writing one of the two analyses I have to send in by Wednesday, so at least that is one less thing to do. 

On Friday I started to read a book called 'Behind Closed Doors' by B.A. Paris, and it was so good so I didn't want to put it down, hence me not doing that much studying. I finished reading it yesterday, and the ending gave me chills! It was such as good book. It's very dark (a man holding his wife prisoner) but I would recommend everyone to read it! I re-read the last chapter twice because it was such a good ending.

Later in the afternoon I went to the Nasher Museum of Art, which is a part of Duke University. There were a few different exhibitions there. My favorite one was the modern art section. I took a bunch of photos of the pieces I liked so I thought I would share them with you :)

On Tuesday evening, we're going back to Columbus. It has been a really nice stay here in North Carolina, but as always, it wil be nice coming back home! :)


Duke University is so pretty!


My favorite painting



❤ Philippa

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2017, Au pair

This weekend is my weekend off, which means I'm off from Friday evening to Sunday evening. Friday evening, I didn't do much. I laid in my room watching a movie and did a bit of studying, but on Saturday I had bigger plans. I went to Chapel Hill to go on a walk looking at all the murals in the town. There were so many of them! Unfortunately, many of them were in bad places, for example in a parking lot or in an alley, so it was kind of difficult ito admire some of them. I love these kind of things, so I enjoyed it anyway.

Later in the afternoon I went to my first football game! It was insane! I'm not a person that enjoys watching sport games, but this was on a whole other level! I loved every second of it, even though I spent about half the game trying to figure out the rules and what was actually happening on the field, but once I got more into it, it was so much fun! Everyone was dressed in the colors of their team and there were so much team spirit. The whole experience was very American. Hot dogs, football, cheerleaders, and crazy drunk fans. I was watching the game between UNC and Notre Dame. I was cheering for UNC, but unfortunately they lost... UNC was good but not as good as Notre Dame... I really like the vibe of going to a football game and I absolutely think I will be going to more of them! :) But before the next game, I will do some studying of the rules, to be more certain of what's going on.


One of my favorite murals


One of my favorite murals



♥ Philippa

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2017, Au pair

Tomorrow it's October 1st, so today it was time to put up the Halloween decorations! When my host mom came up with the large box filled to the top with pumpkins, spiders, and bats I thought she was kidding. Since Halloween isn't really celebrated in Sweden, it was so fun decorating. We spent most of our afternoon to make the house more Halloween-y, and it turned out so good! The boys were so happy decorating the house! :) I'm so looking forward to the actually day of Halloween, to really experience an American Halloween! 


These are my favorite decorations that we put up!


❤ Philippa

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2017, Au pair

Hello everybody!

Fall has started, at least that is what everybody is saying here, but I wouldn't call 32 degrees celsius fall... It has been so hot the last few days, so it's back to dresses and skirts. I know I shouldn't complain but I really want it to be colder so I can wear knitted sweaters and long pants and not be sweaty all the time...

Last Thursday, one of my host-family's old au pairs (Rebecca) came here. It was nice having her here. She helped a lot (for example cleaning the car, THANK YOU! <3) AND she is so sweet and really nice to hang out with. Because of her being here, my host-family decided that we were going to a farm for a market and a corn maze. on Saturday. The corn maze was fun (and super American) and it took us about one hour to complete the whole maze. The pattern of the maze was insane, they had made in the shapes of different musical instruments.After we completed the maze, we got candy so everyone was happy about that.

In the evening, Rebecca, Victoria, and I went to Cheesecake Factory for dinner and cheesecake. Their cheesecakes are incredible! We were so full from the dinner so we went to Old Hilliard and sat by the fountain, eating cheesecake and talking. On Sunday it was time for Rebecca to go home, so as a final thing the three of us went to Bob Evans for breakfast before we drove Rebecca to the airport. And the afternoon was spent with Victoria at the movies. We saw 'Baby Driver'. It was soooo good!! It was a really good ending to my week!



❤ Philippa

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2017, Au pair, TRAVEL

My plan for day three quickly got scratched because of an inaccurate Google Maps during planning. We were supposed to go to a underground city and then to a market. When I was in planning-mode Google Maps said it was a 15 minutes walk between the two sites, but when we got there I looked again and then it said a one hour walk... We ended up not going to the market but we did go to the Underground City (which wasn't underground by the way). The rest of the day we wandered around in the city, visiting Basilique de Notre Dame, and walking along the Old Port. We were both tired from the hectic days we had had, so it was nice taking it easy just walking and having deep discussions about if Pluto is a planet or not, and what would happen if you sent a space ship full of pasta to Saturn. It was a wonderful ending to our trip. We didn't go home until a few days later, but we didn't do anything special except sitting at cafés, reading, writing, and, of course, talking.

The Underground City was pretty, but a bit disappointing since it wasn't underground... In the Underground City, there were many fancy stores, but also a lot of art. My favorite piece has to be the piece of the Berlin wall. It was so cool seeing such an important part of history in real life.

The highlight of the day was most certainly, Le Basilique de Notre Dame. On the outside it looks like any other cathedral, but when you go inside, holy crap it was insane. The first thing you see is a big 'castle' with real-sized statues and lots of gold details. It was incredible! Everything in the cathedral was beautiful. They had three chapels beyond the main part. All of them as beautiful as the main part. BUT what made the whole experience even better was the fact that there was an organ concert. The man who played was so talented, and the music enhanced the whole experience by a thousand. If you are in Montreal, this is the only place you NEED to visit!


A piece of the Berlin wall


A piece of the Berlin wall




♥ Philippa

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2017, Au pair, TRAVEL

Our days in Montreal ended and started very early. We went to bed around 9pm-9.30pm every night and woke up at around 6.30am. Most days were very exhausting so going to bed early was really nice. The beds at our hotel were so comfy. I slept like a baby all night! The breakfast at the hotel was also amazing (of course)! The coffee was disappointing, but it's very difficult to get a real, good cup of coffee here, so I didn't expect more.

Day two was spent at Space of Life, which is a group of four different types of museums (Biodôme, Insectarium, Botanical Garden, and Planetarium). We chose to go to two of them, and my host-child got to choose which ones he wanted to go to. He chose the Biodôme and the Planetarium. Space of Life was about 20 minutes away with metro, so it didn't take too long to get there. We started our day at the Planetarium where we had booked two shows, 'Edge of Darkness' and 'KYMA'. The Planetarium did also have a small exhibition about meteors and meteorites, which I personally didn't think was that interesting but my host-child enjoyed it. The shows were showed in large domes, where you sat in super comfortable chairs and the show was shown in the ceiling of the dome. It was incredible! The first show was interesting and it talked about a lot of the things I discuss daily with my host-children. The second show 'KYMA' started with a starry sky, and it was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. This wasn't even part of the show, but it set hiiiiiiigh expectations. The 'KYMA' show was... weird. It was an artistic interpretation of space. To give you more of a visual, there were people covered in fairy lights spinning around in large hoops with the sound of an orchestra in the background. Artistic interpretations aren't really my thing, so I spent almost all of the show being confused and waiting for it to be over.

Even though I liked the Planetarium, I have to say that the Biodôme was my favorite. The Biodôme presented four different ecosystems (animals + plants) from North and South America. It was really cool, because the whole atmosphere changed when you entered the different rooms. One was really hot and humid, while the next room had no humidity but it had wind blowing. I thought it was amazing how they could change the climate to be so accurate in every room. The different ecosystems were Tropical Rainforest, Laurentian Maple Forest, Gulf of St. Lawrence, and Sub-Antarctic Islands. The only negative aspect of the Biodôme was that it was so small, but other than that we were both very happy with the Biodôme.



♥ Philippa

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2017, Au pair, TRAVEL

It has been quiet here for a week now, but there's a very good explanation to why! I have been planning, organizing, and packing for a trip to Montreal with my host-family! My host-mom had work there, so the oldest one and I came with her to explore Montreal. It was very stressful before we went because there were sooo many things that had to be organized. Even though we tried to fix everything before we left, we still stumbled on some problems on our travel day... As soon as we reached the airport at 5am, we got explained to us that there was a new law for people with European passport (i.e. me), which included me having to be eTA approved. We panicked because we didn't have much time before our flight (our flight was at 6am). The thing ended up taking 10 minutes to apply for, cost me 7 dollars, and get a reply of approval after a further 5 minutes! The next step was to rush through security and then run to our gate. The plan was to leave on Wednesday morning at 6am, but due to two different malfunctions to our first plane, the flight got delayed so much that we had to be re-booked to another flight that left at 10am. This was only problem one, because we had a second flight from Toronto to Montreal, which we also missed due to the first malfunction. When we got off the plane, we had 20 minutes to get to another terminal, talk to the airline service and get them to help us re-book our second flight, then run to our gate and get on the plane. It was a very stressful experience. We were all exhausted when we got to Montreal so we spent around one hour in the hotel taking naps and relaxing.

Since I had planned activities for every day we would be there (*planning-freak), arriving at 2.30pm instead of 10.35am messed up the plans a bit... We/I had to move things around and some of the things got deleted (:(), but I still think we managed to do the main things that both of us wanted to do. Day one of our adventure included visits to Notre Dame, the Old Port, and Old Montreal. We were both super excited for what was ahead of us, so excited that we even came up with our own theme song, that he insisted we sang every time we left the hotel in the morning and at the end of every day. He did the singing and I did the melody! :)

Montreal is a city of tourism, which is why I was surprised by the size of it. I got the impression when being there, that the city was very small, or at least way smaller than I thought it would be. Plus, all tourist places were far from each other, which made it difficult for us to do everything that we might have wanted to do. I still liked the city, but I think that I had very high expectations of the city, which kind of ruined the experience a bit. One thing that did positively surprise me was that the French language was such a huge part of Montreal. I knew that people there spoke both French and English, but the majority of the people preferred to speak in French. All the signs were also in French, and people greeted you in French. I love the language so it was amazing spending time in a French environment so far from France. I actually spoke a bit of French too (more than I thought I would), but it's so much easier to speak in English so for the most part I sent the boy to order food or buy tickets (haha) so he could practice his French... Then I could be the person correcting him or helping him with words he didn't know instead of carrying out a whole conversation in French, since I know that I'm not that good at speaking it.

The places we visited on day one was ok. Some were amazing and some were less amazing. Notre dame closed before we were able to enter (but we managed to visit it on Friday instead), and the Old Port didn't impress me that much. I had heard so many great things about it, so it was kind of disappointing. One thing that was exactly how I imagined it or maybe even better was Old Montreal. It was beautiful! Some parts reminded me of the Old City in Stockholm, which was very nice. I loved walking around there, seeing all the cafés and ice cream places. Unfortunately there was only one store worth going into, but the buildings and people made up for that. The store that was worth going into was called 'Eternal Christmas'... Thus it being a vital stop in my plan! I love stores that are dedicated to Christmas <3 In the evening we went to the restaurant at the hotel where we tried one of the most famous Canadian dishes called Poutine. It sounds really disgusting and it doesn't look that appetizing, but it was actually very good! Poutine is fries with gravy and cheese. Unfortunately I didn't take a picture of the tasty goo, but I thought that you would like to see it so I found a photo on Google :D

This was day one of our Montreal trip.


Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal


The buildings were amazing!


Poutine, doesn't it look incredible?


♥ Philippa

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