We have a Japanese boy with us for a couple more days. It was a busy weekend anyway, but we’re trying to be that “fun” family and make sure our boy has a good time. It’s quite exhausting to be that fun. I looked it up, and this is our 5th Japanese boy. Our first was in 2009. Since then we have hosted 6 girls from China for two weeks(2 at a time), 3 Taiwanese girls for 2 1/2 weeks (also at the same time), one French girl for a month, 2 Brazilian boys for a month (we all remember that wonderful experience, don’t we?) and Larissa, our German daughter, for one school year.
One of my friends asked how we can host, isn’t it awkward? Yes, it is awkward. We mostly don’t explain a whole lot of things and just say, “Come, it’s time to go.” Yesterday we took Nozomu to church with us, and he had no idea where we were going, but when he saw that we were dressed up, he was a little worried that he was in a t-shirt. “That’s fine,” I said, trying to ease his worries. It was a very emotional sacrament meeting, as we got a new bishopric, and I felt the spirit there very strongly. But he was trying to stay awake. When it was over, we stood up and he said, “Finished?” I felt like a wretch as I said, “There’s another meeting, still. John will take you.” Poor boy. But he made it through 3 long hours of church, which must be pure torturous boring for him. Yes, it is awkward, and I always feel like I should be connecting more with these kids. I should be LOVING them more. I should be more of a good mother. But we got a little burned with those boys in January, so I think I still have my guard up a little bit. And it’s hard to not compare ourselves to others in the group when we see pictures of what the other host families are doing. One family took their boy flying over timp. Flying? Really? There’s always some family that takes the kids to Moab or St. George over the weekend and it always looks like they are having more fun than we are. Oh, well. We do our best.
I’ve been a little worried about him not eating much. We went out to Mexican when he first got here, and it was too spicy for me, so I didn’t like it. He didn’t eat much of his, either. For breakfasts, he has had toast, a little yogurt and a banana. Even when we made pancakes and offered him some, he is sticking with the toast and banana. That reminds me, I’ve got to go the the store today and get some more yogurt and bananas. I don’t know what they are feeding them for lunches, but when he’s here, we got out some japanese ramen (left from a previous guest) and he liked that. When we had pizza, he took one slice. I don’t think they like cheese. Well, last night for dinner we finally had time to do dinner right. We had grilled chicken and rice, warm rolls, and cooked vegetables (I even cooked broccoli, which I hate). He ATE and ATE. I think he took 3 rolls, had a bunch of rice, and a LOT of chicken. I was surprised when there were no leftovers, since it was a whole package of chicken we had grilled up. Wow. Either he really liked the food, or he was just really hungry from not eating much the rest of the day, but I was glad he was finally eating. Now, what to cook for tonight?
On Saturday we had our busiest day. I had a rehearsal at the Tabernacle, so I invited the family to come up to temple square and meet me there. They got there for the last 1/2 hour of rehearsal and got to listen in. Maybe that’s a cool thing to see. I don’t know if he’s impressed or not.
As we were walking through temple square back to the car, we had a lot of people say Konichiwa to us. Two sisters talked to us for a minute while one of the kids used the bathroom.
We aren’t allowed to proselyte or give them literature, but the sister was friendly and talked to him in Japanese for a bit. After a quick lunch I took the kids to Cornbelly’s.
We have never been before, so we really didn’t know what to expect, but it was a fun activity. We golfed, rode the little cow train, some of the kids did some nerf type shooting, Natalie and Nozomu rode the zipline. It was fabulous weather, too. I took off my sweater and was enjoying the 67 degree day. Too crowded and confusing for me (so imagine how it must have been to him!), but it was all fun stuff. There was so much we could have done, but we were getting tired, and wanted to get ready for trick-or-treating.
I sent him trick-or-treating with John and a friend. He had a cape. That’s enough of a costume, right? I don’t know what he thought of the whole trick-or-treating thing, but he was willing to go along with it. They were out for two hours. In fact, I was a little worried about them and glad that John answered his phone when I called to ask where they were. The instructions had been to go around our neighborhood and then come home, and I would drive them somewhere else if they wanted. They expanded the boundary a bit, but Ryan went and got them.
On Sunday, after church, we decided to go into the canyon for a drive. See some leaves, take some pictures. However, when we got to the pay station in American Fork Canyon, the guy said, “I’m going to have to ask you to turn around. There’s some police activity and we aren’t letting anyone up the canyon.” Wow. Never heard that before. So, we turned around, and went to Pleasant Grove. We decided to hike the Battlecreek Falls hike. Can you believe I’ve never done that before? The kids were NOT excited about a hike, even though Ryan said it was really a 2 mile walk. Ha. Not flat. For out of shape people, it was a climb. But we did it, and even had fun.
Today they go to a local school, and I’ll pick three of them up from the Junior High so they can hang out here for a while. We need to do our required activity of Bowling, and we’ll probably still go to Thanksgiving point. Busy, yes. Fun busy, though.