Wednesday, July 17, 2013

summer loving

I saw a "back-to-school" display at the grocery store today and almost choked.

Keep that nonsense FAR away from me please!

Selina left today to go home to NYC and, since we got home from 4 days of camping in NH yesterday, today was full of mundane things like laundry and grocery shopping. Not the most exciting of ways to spend a hot summer afternoon... but needed to be done. I had literally no fresh food in the house at all. And no one wants to walk around in dirty clothes all day. Speaking of clothes, both boys irreparably tore their swimsuits while in NH... hopefully I can find more on sale before all that "back to school" stuff takes over. -___-

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Fresh Air Fund Update

Our family is hosting a child through the Fresh Air Fund for two weeks. The kids come from low-income neighborhoods in NYC, and host families in the country give them a kind of "camp" experience!

We picked Yan Lin up last Tuesday from Gouldsboro State Park. She was wearing a Dora ball cap and a sundress. I had the idea to ask her if she had a nickname on the drive home, and she informed me that her American name is Selina! 

Ever since then, for 9 days now, she has been enjoying life in the country without one bit of homesickness, undesirable behavior or problems whatsoever! Her English is improving every day (she mostly struggles with pronouns (his/her) and verb tenses (is/are, etc.) Not too shabby! She speaks only Chinese at home and her friends all speak Chinese as well so although she's been here two years, her English really only gets used with her teacher at school.

This is from our first day at the lake. She had never been swimming before and had NO sense of balance in the water at all. I was worried the two weeks would be filled with me having to keep her upright in the water! However by day 3 she was venturing out a bit with a floatie on, and has made huge progress since then. She now intentionally puts her head in the water and can swim independently of me!

Last Saturday we were waiting for it to get dark to start the fireworks show. The other kids had all left the lake... but not Selina!

The little fish. :)

She told us she'd never gone barefoot before, and for the first few days wore her yellow crocs every time she left the house (which was a lot! She loves being outdoors.) Gradually she realized that going barefoot was fun and safe and now she skips out the door barefoot like a pro.

Friday we are driving to NH for the weekend to go camping. She is SO excited about tent camping and asks me every day how much longer it is till she gets to sleep in a tent. 

If anyone reading this is in the position to open your home for two weeks to a kid who has likely never seen a grassy yard or a starry sky, I can't recommend this program highly enough. We have all loved having Selina here and will be sorry to see her go next week!