Tuesday, October 20, 2009

My unbelievably untidy house

We pick up our Japanese exchange student from BYU tomorrow. His name is Yuuki Matsumoto and he doesn't like vegetables, but likes to watch Major League Baseball and play tennis. He is almost 15 yrs. old and says he is looking forward to "eating delicious food" and wants to "visit tourist attraction." We have been brainstorming as a family about the weird things we could cook him with lots of vegetables:)

We've had two Japanese exchange students before but this will be our first boy. We were signed up as a backup family and the lady in charge calls us up on Monday afternoon and doesn't even say hello before she says, "Is your family all well?" Apparently they have lost a bunch of host families at the last minute due to swine flu and she was calling me to tell me she needed to bring over the paperwork to me now. I told her we were in Idaho. She agreed to meet me at my house at 8:30 the next morning. When she showed up she wasn't shy about telling me I needed to "tidy up a bit" because these boys are from very nice circumstances. Hmmmm. You call me on Monday afternoon, we arrive home from vacation at 11:15 that night, and then expect to show up first thing in the morning expecting perfection?

I gotta say, I actually thought the house looked pretty good, even for a non-coming-home-from- vacation-super-late-the-night-before-and then-getting-kids-off-to-school-early-the-next-morning-day.
But, whatever.

Lava Hot Springs, Idaho

We told the kids we would do something in October because we spent the whole summer at home (unless you count the staycation.) We had planned on going to Bryce Canyon or Goblin Valley, but then Nathaniel got sick with what is likely swine flu and so we didn't make reservations in anticipation of all the other kids getting sick. Instead, I had the rest vaccinated and no one else ever did. With the October 15th tax deadline hitting Peter pretty hard I was in charge of the last minute trip. I wanted to do something where there were some hot springs. It only took me about 3 hrs (Nathaniel says 4) but eventually I figured something out.
So this is the house where we stayed:
It was a good deal and was a super cute house. The hot springs were HOT. There was this old guy I was talking to who brought along his meat thermometer. 112 degrees. Holy crap. Nathaniel, Sarah and Rebecca almost became poached eggs and melted quickly but John was all over that place--although he was red as a beet. He swam through everything with his water wings (which I feared would melt any minute) and had himself a ball. We kept thinking it would either relax him or wear him out but that never happened.
The town was so small I couldn't see how anyone could stand it. I was very glad we brought all our own food because there was really nowhere to eat. We cooked everything at the house. Played lots of games and I did a puzzle, read a couple of books, and just soaked it up in the hot springs--for as long as I could stand it anyway. Luckily there was also an indoor pool with a rock climbing wall and stuff. We roasted lots of marshmallows by the fire pit outside the house and played at the park on the merry-go-round. On Sunday we went to church and heard the funniest and best talks I have ever heard on communication between men and women in marriage during Sacrament Meeting. I could have sat there for another 2 hrs. just listening to this couple. I have vowed to write them a thank you letter. We'll see if that ever happens.

Idaho was beautiful as we drove home in the sunset with the rainclouds hanging over all the open space.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Going skiing?

Now that the weather has cooled down the basement is getting downright cold. I went down there the other day and got this picture of him working from home wearing his ski jacket.