We matched with Celina in January 2020 and she proactively obtained her visa right away, which proved to be fortunate. Then, despite never having traveled by herself, she enthusiastically spent two weeks in Turkey in order to get to our family in the U.S. Celina arrived at our house in Phoenix, AZ in August and we promptly moved to Maryland three weeks later. Celina was a trooper on a five-day move across country, keeping the kids entertained in the car, which made the trip go so smoothly. Since arriving in Maryland, we have had many changes to the house. Celina has been incredibly flexible during all of this, taking the kids to different rooms on different floors in order to stay out of the way of construction and stay safely away from those outside our household bubble.
She is amazing at getting Roslyn into her classes, ensuring Roslyn gets therapy time each day, and making sure Adare gets the attention he needs. Our kids have very different needs and capabilities and Celina is able to adeptly manage that. She has even managed to help us potty train Adare, helping the process go smoothly. She is a master juggler in what has been a very challenging time. Despite her disappointment in not being able to travel, Celina has kept her spirits up and has prioritized the safety of the family. She has been an incredible addition to the family and continually demonstrates a resilience that is wonderful to see in a young adult.
We are grateful every day to have her as part of our family and we can never fully put into words how much it means to us that she loves our kids so much.
It's not always easy with a special needs child to find someone who can not only meet Roslyn's physical needs, but to love her unconditionally for who she is. Celina is able to do that. She has a true gift and is a wonderful au pair.
Celina has continued to teach Adare German and she always assists Mike and I with questions about the language as they arise. We have discussed so many topics from holiday traditions to school transportation to garbage disposals to societal behaviors towards special needs people. Rarely does a day go by when we don't learn something about Germany.
Celina is creative in her activities for the kids, ensuring they get the opportunities to do fun art projects, play in the snow, build towers out of blocks, and numerous other activities. The kids get to be kids and have fun, which we are thrilled with since neither my husband or I are nearly as creative.
The kids have so much fun with her and it shows in the faces when she walks into a room.
We went to the Symphony of Lights during the holidays and had a fun time driving through that. It was a great family outing and we were thrilled to have Celina with us. Celina and I went to Gettysburg and did a driving tour. It was great to share some history with her and give her the opportunity to see a new place. We had a huge Thanksgiving dinner as we wanted to give her the "American" experience of way too much food. The look on her face when she saw all the food was worth all the cooking. She played with Adare and Roslyn, sharing in their first time in snow. She helped the kids carve their first pumpkin, making sure they learned all about pumpkins.