Dual working parents Spotlight: The Mercer family in Missouri

Host parents: Erin and Shane

Host children: Dulany (2.5) Landon (6 months)
Host family since: 2009
Current Au Pair: Caroline from Austria

Says Shane, “At first we didn’t even know what an au pair was!” But after he and Erin learned about the au pair program through a friend they crunched the numbers and determined that hosting an au pair was actually cheaper than daycare.

While they appreciate how much money they can save, they’ve found the biggest benefit to be the convenience of live-in care. Now, Erin and Shane can leave the kids at the breakfast table with their au pair when they leave for work. The one-on-one care Dulany and Landon get with Caroline has also been a big bonus, as well as the help with household chores.

On occasion, Erin and Shane have enough hours left to schedule Caroline for a Saturday night so they can go out on a date together.

Caroline has loved her time with the Mercers but is planning to extend her year in the U.S. for another year with a different family on the west coast. Erin and Shane support her decision and have already matched with their second au pair, Cindy from Colombia. Erin says, “We are so happy with the experience we have had so far!”

Saturday, 1 February 2014 4:49 AM


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