Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Chinese Homestay Concluded + Aubrey's Play

The Homestay Rep took all the kids to Putter's where they 
had pizza, soda, miniature golf, arcarde games and lazer tag.
A totally American experience.

Whew. I'm back. It's been a weird almost two weeks. It's really just crazy. But, you know? I must secretly *like* it so crazy, because I'm a magnet for it. Truly truly. Chaos is just a part of my life.

I had a Chinese teenager sharing a room with Robert -- who thought it was all great fun for about four days. Then his Asperger's kicked in and he was just done with it. So, the boys just really kept to themselves after that. Unfortunate. :( 

I wished that Zh. had more English skills, as we had *no* Mandarin and our communication was limited. 

In the future, if I host again (which I'm not adverse to doing), I will do so many things differently.

  • take more time to communicate -- even if it doesn't look like it's working
  • plan more activities at home so that we aren't all on the computer on a Saturday (I blame the weather though; no good hiking days)
  • insist on each family member interacting with the homestay student, not just the youngest
  • just try to connect more (As the host families were dropping them off at the van that was to drive them to the airport, I say lots of hugging and laughing and possibly a tear or two. At the end of our visit, I did not have that kind of relationship with him and that's disappointing to me.)

This was at a going away party for the students and their chaperones. 
We all went to Skate World and had cake.

Zh. at Aubrey's school the night of her play performance.

Aubrey as a Roman soldier.

The six graders all did brilliantly in their roles.
This is after the play.
My beautiful Aubrey.

There are so many other things still in the works: house plans to finalize (the builder's assistant we were working with got fired, so we now need to communicate with the builder -- who is mad-crazy-busy -- in a country with not-so-great internet capabilities. It's been difficult. AND, not to alarm anyone, but we still don't have a deed. Though we do have assurances that it will be closed on this week. Even if our lawyer has to drive the four hours to get the seller's signature himself! (I like this lawyer.) :)

I'm also working on a new writing idea that may or may not work out -- but the thinking about it is interesting.

And I'm in a lovely new relationship. <3<3<3

And tomorrow I'm celebrating NINE outstanding years with my lover, friend and husband! (That's the longest relationship either of us have ever been in .... ) <3<3<3

And I said goodbye to our fun, sweet, silly backyard hens and their yummy organic omega 3 rich eggs.
I just need to start letting go of little things here and there that will allow me to simplify my life. And I resent that. Really I do. I don't *want* to have to let go of things that I think are cool or fun because I don't have time to take care of them. But ... when I take time to remember where I am in my life path, I remember that in Costa Rica I'll have loads of chickens and not have to take care of them. So I'm not forever saying good-bye to watching chickens free-range the land and strut with their funny little walk, or to run like a toddler with a Superman cape on. I'll just do it later. 

I'm not saying good-bye to fresh grown, organic produce from my garden ('cuz I think I'll be letting go of that, too). I'll just do it later.

See! Procrastination is an acceptable course of action at times. :D

What I am focusing on right now is: fostering my romantic relationships, building author platform, and building clientele for my line editing business.

And getting my twelve year old to clean her room and taking my nine year old to occupational therapy.
You know, the regular stuff.


HappyOrganist said...

wow - that sounds exciting. I bet relationships (re: host families saying goodbye with hugs and tears) are harder to form when communication is difficult. And language can be a big barrier to communication. Chinese (Mandarin) is on my list of languages I want to learn. But it's pretty difficult, so I can't blame you for not learning any. heheh
(it's very hard).
But I bet you did great anyway. And there ARE other ways to communicate, of course. I'm glad the kids had fun (even if it got nerve wracking after 4 days. heh)
Sounds fun.
Good luck with your house. wow - what a lot of work!

Anonymous said...

miss u!

Denny Doan said...

Nice blog. These tips are really very helpful. I got a good knowledge from your post. Thanks a lot for enjoying this beauty article with me. It is very interesting for me to read this blog. Thanks to sharing it..

Chinese Homestay