After Mimi and the kids went back to Hong Kong, we welcomed Yumi into our home that very weekend. Yumi is from Fukushima, Japan, and is the first foreign student we’ve hosted! She came to the Bay Area as part of the Tomodachi SoftBank Leadership Program, which provides scholarships for select Japanese students to participate in a 3 week program at Cal to learn how to rebuild communities after a disaster like the great East Japan earthquake in 2011.
As part of the 3 week program, they get to stay with a local family for one weekend, and we signed up to be one of those families!
Since it was Yumi’s very first visit to the Bay Area, we took her to a number of landmarks for some sightseeing. We also took her to some all American restaurants, like IHOP and Cheesecake Factory, as well as California classics, like In N Out Burgers. Yumi spoke very little English, and Bridgette’s Japanese was still very elementary, so we relied on Google Translate a lot to communicate with one another.
After Yumi left, Bridgette and her friend Anita left for a week of camp up in Mount Hermon. While I missed her dearly, I was also relieved to get some down time to rest, recuperate, and to catch up with house stuff!
Once Bridgette returned from camp, we welcomed another guest into our home–my dear cousin Celine from Boston! We adore Celine and always have such a great time with her, so we were super happy to see her again. We got to explore the city some more, took some nice hikes, and even spent a lovely day down in Carmel together.
After Celine left, we packed our bags once again and left for our big Europe trip! Still have so many photos to sort through from that trip, but the blog posts will be coming soon…
Here’s a video of our fun-filled summer!