Our Exchange Student YUKO arrives and DAY ONE of SOJTBN

Yuko shares her gifts with us - poor thing now awake almost 28 hours at this point!

The neighbor kids swarm onto Yuko!

Yuko brings gifts from her parents to all of us for hosting her

Japanese students teach the host family kids their own games

At the welcome picnic - Becca gets a new friend AND pop - wow what a day!

Today was the awesome day that YUKO joined us. She’s our 4th Japanese summer exchange student. She’s part of a home stay program through a local college. The students come for three weeks and live with American families. Our job is simply to “bring them along” on our day to day jaunts…nothing heroic required…they just want to see what we “do” here in America. So baseball practice, a trip to the grocery store, an oil change – it’s all good and all new to them!
As all our students were – she is helpful and joyful and funny and sweet. Her English is quite basic so we smile, bow and nod a lot right now but we’ll hit our stride soon – especially if she has one of those handy pocket translators the other students owned.
Tonight was one of my favorite parts about the visit – the gifts. NO not becasue we are getting a big stash of very cool Japanese gifts – but because no matter HOW tired these students are – they come right down as soon as they get their suitcase opened. They gather the family to hand out gifts. These gifts were lovingly chosen by the student’s parents – several hand picked for each member of our family. Cookies, Miso soup, paper toys, Japanese candies, hand towels and PIKACHU are big themes! You can feel the love the Mommas put into wrapping each and every gift as a thank you to that family across the ocean that is hosting their daughter – sight unseen – for a month!
Poor thing was up about 30 hours when she finally got to bed here. She was ABOUT to climb into bed when Simba (our buff colored kitty) decided to crawl up INTO the underside of her antique bed frame. I can only imagine the email home forming in HER head as Hannah laid on the floor on one side of the bed shoving a broom underneath it and I laid on the other shaking a dish of cat food. Fabo! Luckily Yuko was darn near coma stage with sleep deprivation so she sweetly smiled and thanked us over and over – although she loves cats and probably would have enjoyed a purring kitty on her bed. There was a welcome picnic tonight as well – put on by the program. The Japanese students taught calligraphy, Japanese dance, origami and taught some songs in Japanese. It’s a hit every year and half it’s purpose is to keep the jet lagged kids awake. Yuko slept with all the lights on again (all our students do this???) but DID appear to get UNDER the covers (none of our students ever did that!
So my nice deed for the day (and I’ll only count this once) was hosting an exchange student for a month….although the pleasure is all ours!

About Being Nice Is Free

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