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We are a family of 3 living in the charming Vorderer Westen neighborhood of Kassel, Germany. Our son was born in 2017. He's friendly, funny, cute and open to new people, and we're always happy when he's exposed to different cultures and languages. We adults are an American entrepreneur and a German investor in our 30s who met in India and traveled to Taiwan, Slovenia, Austria, Belgium, etc. together. At our place, you can expect interesting conversations, delicious & nourishing food, a convenient location (right near the tram and close to the regional train station) and opportunities for cultural exchange.
Babysitting and creative play
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We're a well-traveled, BGLTQ-friendly, liberal-leaning family with experience living abroad for long periods of time and we're happy to share our experiences with you.
If you want to practice speaking German, that's an option.
We live in a historic neighborhood in Germany with many beautiful buildings. There are also many cultural sites in Kassel, such as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and many museums (art museums, the Brothers Grimm fairytale museum, a tech museum, a museum about death, etc.).
It's also easy to access the regional train station from our place, so you can travel to other cities/regions quickly and easily from here.
If you love cooking or delicious food, this is an ideal place to visit! We're a very culinary family and love connecting over meals. We can also teach you a lot about how to cook tasty, nourishing food in a way that is easy, low stress and quick, and so you never have 'nothing to eat' when you open the fridge.
If you're interested in entrepreneurship, personal development, organic farming or investing, we're happy to teach you all about these topics!
From the end of September through early December, we will be between au pairs and will need some help with childcare. We prefer applicants with childcare experience and a friendly, caring attitude. We're looking for 20-25 hours a week of care such as:
- picking our son up from daycare (two blocks away from our home) and supervising him (with his friends and their parents) at the nearby park
- playing with him (for example, pretending that you're both cats or dogs, playing Uno, playing with Legos together, drawing with him...)
- (if you like) taking him on bike rides with him in a seat on the bike you're riding
- (if you're comfortable with it) supervising the occasional bath or helping him get dressed
Our son understands English, but mostly speaks German. This is a good opportunity to learn more German if you already know a few basics.
Please note that our son is often naked in the house. If this is uncomfortable for you, please do not apply ;)
If you'd like to talk with our previous au pair, she can tell you what living and working here was like for her.
You are not expected to cook if you aren't interested in cooking, but cooking is mostly a group activity here and you are welcome to learn how to cook nourishing, delicious meals using a technique called 'food rotation'. Food rotation involves cooking food in batches so you are never stuck with 'nothing to eat' and you always have healthy, tasty food ready to enjoy. It's a skill that can benefit you for the rest of your life :)
You are expected to help with dishes and laundry proportional to your use of dishes and need for laundering. So, for example, if you wear multiple outfits a day and only wear each item once before washing it, you'll need to help more with laundry. If you usually wear the same thing two days in a row, then you'll only need to help a little with laundry.
Chinese (Mandarin): Beginner
Your room: You'll be staying in a private bedroom with a large window and a small balcony that overlooks a beautiful building across the street. You'll have a desk, chair, wardrobe and comfortable bed, plus a pillow, blankets, a towel, etc. There's also a little chair and table on the balcony and there will be plants living in your room with you. :)
Other rooms and amenities: We all share a bathroom with a shower and a tub. You'll have access to a washing machine and dryer. The kitchen offers a large fridge, a deep freezer, a gas stove, an oven, a microwave, a dishwasher and a well-stocked pantry. You'll also have access to a large common room with a couch and a movie projector and access to a large dining room with an office area off to the side.
Please note that there is only one bathroom per apartment (with 3 adults and one child sharing the apartment), so please take only one shower (or brief bath) per day and be mindful of your WC use (e.g., do hair/makeup in your own room or during off-peak hours).
At over 100 square meters, the SMOKE-FREE apartment is spacious by European standards. (Only non-smokers will be considered.)
Outdoor spaces: You'll have access to your own private balcony as well as access to a large, shared backyard with picnic tables and a trampoline. We're very close to a large park with basketball courts, grassy areas, a playground, a mini-outdoor gym, etc.
Food: We're flexitarian and are happy to accommodate vegetarians, flexitarians or anyone who doesn't mind that we usually only eat meat/fish about 3-5 times per week at most. Gluten-free and dairy free are totally possible -- just let us know in advance. We'll do the cooking and food prep unless you want to cook or share cooking duties... in which case, we're thrilled to try your cooking and to cook together! :) On some days, you may be expected to prepare your own food for one meal with easy to prepare foods that are on hand (such as cereal or sandwiches). It's possible we'll eat at a restaurant or order in a few times during your stay. We sometimes enjoy a glass of wine over dinner and you're welcome to have some if you like.
Travel: During November, we'll all spend a few days on vacation in a cabin with a sauna in the beautiful Harz mountains of Germany. Two friends from Berlin will join us. You'll have your own bedroom there. We're planning on going hiking, visiting a waterfall, visiting a historic city center, enjoying the sauna, etc.
You'll probably also have the opportunity to travel to our organic family farm. Depending on the weather and your cold tolerance, you would be able to stay in a house that is currently unoccupied or to camp in a tipi or tent. It's very beautiful and peaceful there.
The area/transport (+ a few local sights): Excellent access! We live in a very walkable neighborhood with all the essentials nearby. There's a tram stop almost directly outside the front door, making it easy to get around town and explore. Downtown / city center is about 10 minutes away by tram and it includes museums, the theatre, cinemas, shopping and more. The UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Hercules Monument (and the gorgeous park that surrounds it) is easily accessible, as is the regional train station (about 5 minutes away by tram from the new apartment), making it easy to reach nearby cities, such as Göttingen and Hannover, or other German highlights, such as Berlin, Frankfurt or the Black Forest, via high-speed train. You can also use our bike if you want.
Expectations of you/your behavior (to avoid any surprises or conflicts during your stay): Non-smokers only. Fully vaccinated applicants get priority over unvaccinated applicants. We expect you to follow the COVID regulations, to wash your hands when you get home (to avoid other illnesses) and to follow the German noise laws (quiet after 10 PM). We ask that you do not drink to the point of inebriation (drunkenness) during your stay and that you do tidy up after yourself (e.g., put your dishes into the dishwasher and don't leave trash lying around). Please do not use cologne/perfume (including essential oils and scented products—we can provide unscented shampoo, soap, moisturizer, etc.) and do not burn incense or scented candles. We're happy to share books and most household items with our guests, but please do ask before borrowing things. Food note: There's a citrus fruit allergy in the family, so no citrus fruits (lemons, limes, oranges, etc.) or citrus fruit juices are allowed in the house. Thanks!
Shared cultural activities: In addition to a trip to the famous Harz mountains, we're happy to share cultural activities with you! For example, we can go to local museums, visit local shops, watch movies together and share local/traditional foods. If you are interested in exploring the city, we can help you navigate and find interesting places. If you are interested in visiting nearby sites on your time off, we can recommend places to visit in Göttingen, Hannover, etc., we can help you plan your trip (find train tickets, etc.) and we may even be able to take a day trip or overnight trip with you, depending on the timing.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have a dedicated office area and a pretty good WiFi connection. We work from home and are happy to share ideas, mentor about entrepreneurship/investment, talk over coffee/tea, etc.
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week (less when heavy lifting is involved)