so, we said good-bye to our sweet little friend tonight, but not before hanging out with her mom, daniel and his mom. daniel is another chinese student who came and spent time in 3rd grade too. we spent the afternoon and evening with them. just enough time to completely fall in love with them too.
seriously. i felt like i was hanging out with a couple girlfriends and all of our kids. whatever language barrier that was there was remedied by cindy and daniel who could translate nicely for us. such a fun afternoon.
leaving the school was tough. some tears, etc. we came back to our house to change clothes because the kids had pajama day at school and i couldn't take them to lunch in their pjs. cindy was so happy to show her mom our animals that she fell in love with. she calls our cats "cat pajamas." i'm not sure how that all started, but it completely stuck, and made us laugh every time. the moms were so sweet and had so much fun looking at all of our family pictures we have out, etc.
i am telling you, i seriously felt like we were just hanging out with new friends. i love meeting new people and getting to know them. i got to see some of their pics of their husbands and places they visited while they were here. cindy looks just like her dad. he is super tall like dan. it was fun to see their resemblance.
then daniels mom, lily, offered to make dumplings. i had no idea what she meant, but i wasn't going to turn down authentic chinese food. we made a quick run to the market and they set to work. holy moly. so yummy!! they made the dough for the dumplings, minced up shrimp, pork, green onions, some seasonings, and mashed it all together. they showed us how they make the dumplings and we all helped stuff them.
julie came over with her girls and helena, her chinese student. the kids played like crazy. my upstairs and downstairs are a complete wreck i'm sure. i'm almost afraid to look. then helena's mom came over too.
i can't explain the joy in our house from tonight. hearing all the chinese talk, english talk, giggles, noise, etc. and knowing how much fun everyone was having was such an awesome experience. everyone just mixed so well. the moms were so happy to be involved with all of the children. elijah was his usual self and had ecko (sp? that's cindy's mom's american name) and lily thought he was hilarious.
oh, also, when we were at the store looking for flour for the dumplings they called a friend in the states who also spoke english to have her tell me what kind of flour i should buy. so funny!
sigh ... i am exhausted, but these last two weeks were such a great experience. of course, cindy just blended so well with our family that i don't know that we can host any other student. she has set the bar way too high.
we sure do love that crazy girl. we called the 3 kids crazy 1, 2, and 3.
did i mention the whoopie cushion? we went to the works last night which is one of those places you can play games and earn tix. each kid got two things. madelyn got a whoopie cushion and a ring she gave to me. cindy got a rainbow slinky and a ring she gave to her mom. elijah got a set of fake rotten teeth and an eye ball thing that you turn inside out and it pops up. on the way home he said his fake teeth was the most special thing he EVER got. oh my.
meanwhile, the whoopie cushion had us cracking up the whole way home. i forgot how funny they could be. the kids cracking up at it alone is enough to make you laugh, especially since this was their first experience with one. it was just so funny.
of course they wanted to take it into school today. they didn't play with it at all until the end of the day. madelyn blew it up for emma to sit on. well, emma sat a bit too hard and the thing popped. oops.
and that was that. whoopie cushion fun is over.
and so is our time with cindy.
after all our fun this evening and after much munching on dumplings we had to say good-bye.
can i just say how horrible it is to say good-bye to one sweet girl with tears streaming down her face then turn around and see another sweet little girl with tears streaming down her face? ugh. 3 hugs later they walked out the door. then we all stood in our dark driveway waving good-bye and yelling good-bye as they drove away.
cindy's mom was so sweet though saying they would come visit again and that we were always welcome in beijing. she had also mentioned earlier in the day that she knew how much cindy loved us and had fun at our house. i told her the feelings were mutual. she also picked up on how much alike cindy and madelyn are during our afternoon together. they really are which is why cindy just fit right in with us.
alas, all good things must come to an end, as sad as it might be. i will say though i never thought i would have a desire to visit china, but i do now. i would love to see where cindy lives and we have quite a few connections there now with all the international students that have come to tka. one day we'll get there.
now please excuse me while i cry myself to sleep ...