Original post by: Thais Dybax
Brazilian au pair Thais has an unusual hidden talent… she’s a self-published author of a children’s book! With an undergraduate degree in design, Thais, age 25, has always had a creative mind. While on program with her host family outside of Boston, Thais decided to challenge herself even further. Inspired by her host child, Rosie, she put together something truly incredible. Thais tells us about her journey from au pair to author below.
My idea for this project was born during an afternoon reading with my host kid, Rosie. I have always liked to read, and so does my host family. They have a bunch of books from the library at home! On a cold winter day in Massachusetts, Rosie and I were reading some stories together, and the book idea just popped into my mind. I decided to use my free time during the cold days after work to plan, write, and illustrate a customized book.
I had a lot of challenges along the way – I had no idea what the process was to publish a book, especially in a different country! I did research and discovered all the steps that I needed to become a self-publisher.
Another big challenge was the language! I am still learning English, so I had to ask for help from someone with more knowledge in the English language than me to correct my text.
After six months, I had the result. The book was ready! It’s a first learning book for kids from ages two to seven years old. The book is customizable with the kid’s name and gender, and it’s printed on demand, so every book is going to be different for every child.
The story is about a kid who lost its name inside the zoo and needs the help of the animals to find it again. It is written in rhymes, and I tried to combine my love for animals and knowledge in history, telling curious facts about animals and teaching at the same time the letters that form the name of each child.
I have received many requests from au pairs who are starting the program and want to give a different gift to their host families and also from the ones that are leaving. I am very happy with the feedback I have received and to the United States for making me grow so much!