After all the changes that we’ve been through in the spring, losing both Cole and Larissa, I wasn’t hip for hosting any exchange students this summer. Let’s just have a nice quiet summer with the four kids, right?
Somehow the family thought it would be fun to host again, even though I told them over and over again that I would NOT be around, since the hosting was at the same time as our final rehearsals and opening of the Scarlet Pimpernel. Ryan assured me that he would be fine, even if I wasn’t around. Ha.
A few things were actually in my favor this time.
#1-Carpool. I actually had a lady from Alpine call me and say that she and another lady each had vans and were willing to carpool, they just needed a third person. Hooray! With each of us housing two students,that’s 6 kids to haul back and forth, so you really need a van or big car to be able to carpool. Last time we did this, I was kind of late in finding a carpool, and could only find someone with a small car, and the driving was unbearable. This time, I had to drive only 9 times. Hooray! I told them that I needed to drive in the mornings, since afternoons get crazy, especially when I have to turn around and go back to Orem for rehearsal, so mornings were best. But it was dang hard getting myself and the girls up to leave by 7:30 each day.
#2-Distance. The home base school, where all the classes and activities started, and our place to pick up and drop off, was at about 800 North in Orem. While that’s still a ways away, it’s better than driving all the way to Provo, or BYU. On a good day, I could make it there in 20 minutes.
#3-Megan could drive herself and her sisters to the buddy program. They always do a buddy program with American kids, and this year three of my kids were old enough to do the buddies. There were 5 days of activities that they did together, although my kids flaked on the Seven Peaks day. They just didn’t want to go, and said it wasn’t as fun as in past years. But whatever. I didn’t have to drive them!!! Hooray!!! Megan couldn’t drive the Chinese girls anywhere, but she can drive her sisters.
I feel bad that I wasn’t around to take them to do fun things. In fact, the last week, I would only see them in the morning, as I would be leaving by the time they got back. But Ryan was GREAT. He took them and John to see Despicable Me 2, took them bowling a second time, brought everyone to the theater to see a dress rehearsal of my show, and took them to yogurt. He took everyone to the parade and Fireworks for the Highland Fling. He even took them to fix a broken ipod case. What an amazing guy!
On their last night here, we invited over another host family and our new carpool buddies, and had a barbeque. The girls came alive with friends to talk to, and everyone had a nice time. That night we even all played “Mafia” in the basement.
Monday morning I took them to school for the last time. I gave them both hugs and Yao said sweetly, “We will miss you!”. I hope we can keep in contact with them. It’s always fun to send Christmas cards to our foreign friends.
Of course, it’s NOT fun to mail them stuff that they forgot. We found a camera in the back yard after they had gone, and now don’t know how exactly to get it back to her.