“It’s a world of laughter, a world of love…”

“…the very real blessings that sustains me are the relationships we share with our friends and family we met by chance. These are the relationships gathered from cultural exchange begun because we welcomed an international teen into our home and heart”

First Semester…. check!

The Fall semester of school was a whirlwind at our house. With two biological high school teens (A Senior cheerleader and a Freshman marching band drummer) plus a foreign exchange student teen, our calendar was full! It wasn’t until planning out this post and creating our latest video for Youtube that I realized my feelingContinue reading “First Semester…. check!”

Welcome to the USA

For the past several years AYA has asked me to help chaperone one of their student orientations during the month of August. Held in NYC, this is always an exciting, fun-filled four days as we greet students from all over the world, help them adapt to the fast-paced American lifestyle, site see in NYC, andContinue reading “Welcome to the USA”

It’s not goodbye…

Proms, final exams, and graduations have come and gone. Lockers have been closed for the last time and the once slightly unsure new international student has transformed into a confident bilingual “American” teenager. It’s June and that means another Academic Year in America has come to an end. As a Local Coordinator, I am alwaysContinue reading “It’s not goodbye…”

Throwback Thursday: NYC Girls Trip

Part of my work as a Local Coordinator for Academic Year in America includes planning “enhancement activities” or educational field trips for the exchange student and their host families if they choose to tag along. Most of these enhancement activities are completed locally and involve learning about local government, history and culture. This past May, however,Continue reading “Throwback Thursday: NYC Girls Trip”

Why yes! Mr. Incredible is my “son”!

The 2015-2016 school year brought two young men into our lives to live as our exchange sons, but I only refer to one as “Mr. Incredible”. Fifteen year old Javier stepped off his plane to meet our family in mid August of 2015. He was exhausted, having just spent a whirlwind four days at hisContinue reading “Why yes! Mr. Incredible is my “son”!”

This is my “daughter” Yizheng, I mean Sherry

Five years ago, our family decided to host an exchange student who would attend the small, private Catholic high school our daughter attended. We knew very little about China or Chinese culture and were super nervous this only child would hate living in our crazy house of eight. We weren’t sure if we should call her Yizheng or herContinue reading “This is my “daughter” Yizheng, I mean Sherry”