July 26, 2011

Hasta Luego!

It's almost time to say goodbye. Our three weeks with our Spanish student is coming to a close. In three hours we'll be heading to the airport for our final farewells. Right now our kids are enjoying one last American outing bowling and clinging to our last moments together.

It has been a wonderful experience in every sense. Norma, our student, was a lovely guest. Everything we could have hoped for. She and my daughter bonded immediately. And my son, initially shy, opened up and was teasing his new "sister" in short order -- the international boy language of acceptance. 

Since two of our neighbors also hosted students we've all spent lots of time together. There's been dinner at a local Spanish restaurant, a camp out, game nights, cookouts, Hershey Park, bowling and just hanging out. My daughter has been able to joion the students on some of their trips and she's really gotten close with the group. 

Last night was the goodbye dinner. Spanish dishes were shared, stories told and hugs shared. Being together and seeing the emotions all the families and students shared really consolidated the amazing experience this was for everyone involved. 

I am so thankful we took a chance to do this, not really knowing what it would be like. Our entire family has been tremendously blessed by meeting Norma, making her part of our family and sharing rich experiences together. While our final goodbyes will surely be tear-filled, we have expanded our hearts and opened our lives to new Spanish friends. Ones we will hopefully visit our Spanish friends in the future. And maybe this will be the start of a summer tradition.  

Hasta luego. Dios te bendiga!

Enjoying a day at the beach and learning to boogie board

Hermanos y hermanas

American and Spanish hermanas

Escaping the heat at the Trenton Thunder baseball game

Making an authentic Spanish dish

Tortilla Espanola and Empanda. Delicioso!
All the students at the goodbye party.



Lucky girl . . . to get your sweet family.

I hate goodbyes.


Kelly Combs said...

I love the photos! Looks like a great time. Be blessed!

Sue J. said...

Si! Although I'm sure you wish it were more like "Hasta manana!" I have heard lots of stories about these exchanges. It sounds like you had a truly lovely one. So glad for all of you--and so many fun things! Reading your list and looking green!!

Hope it continues to be a growing relationship with Norma. I'm sure she is and will be grateful for encouragement from her American family as her studies begin again. (And you have to keep cooking Spanish food, right?!)

Laura said...

What a wonderful gift this sounds like--and not just for Norma either! It sounds like God has used this time to work some special things, Kelli. You have such giving heart. Such a happy story.