We recently had the opportunity to host two Japanese students in our home overnight, as part of an English exchange program. We were supposed to show them around the air force base, our home and give them as much of a taste of America as we could. What’s more American than taquito’s in a convenience store roller?! We were off to a great start!
Next up, a birthday party.
They loved the pool.
The girls were mesmerized with the singing and the candles.
And birthday cake. Yum!
Our trampoline was a HUGE hit! I think we could have done nothing else the entire weekend, and they would’ve been happy. (Coincidentally, the trampoline has probably been our best investment ever! It’s had thousands of hours of use, and we got it for $100 from someone’s moving sale. SCORE!)
Then we walked along the flight line to look at the planes.
Next up, was the commissary.
Ella and Eva liked pointing things out and telling the girls what it was.
And on to the BX, our store on base for household goods. Similar to Target, but not nearly as nice!
The girls fell in love with these rings. I just had to buy them, of course. They were thrilled and very appreciative.
Next stop, the library.
Drinking fountains were very intriguing to them, and we hit them all several times over. Come to think of it, I guess there are not many drinking fountains in Tokyo buildings. I’ll have to take note.
We barbequed hamburgers and hot dogs for dinner. (We were instructed not to serve Japanese food of any kind.) They seemed to like everything.
Climbing this tree, in our front yard, is one of Ella and Eva’s favorite pastimes.
Off to the bowling alley.
And time for bed. The girls were really warming up at this point and were talking and giggling more. It was fun to hear them parrot things that we would say.
Pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Honoka was very proud of herself for using a knife and a fork to cut her food. (As opposed to using chopsticks.)
Next up, church. The girls were very excited to borrow one of Ella and Eva’s dresses.
After church, we stopped at the BX-tra, which is another household goods store. They loved the exercise equipment and the toys.
I made some chocolate chip cookies for the girls to take home to their families. Mmmm, warm cookies and milk. They loved this!
And that concluded our visit. They were such sweet and polite girls, we were sad to see them go!
**An interesting side note- Gift giving is very important part of Japanese culture. Gifts are always exchanged if you are visiting someone’s home, as well as the usual, special occasions. Also if you go on vacation, it is customary to bring home souvenirs to all of your co-workers, neighbors, etc.- such gifts even have a name, omiyage, and they are expected.
This is what our guests brought for the family.
The panda chocolate balls were my favorites. They are solid white, but the packaging is colored to look like clothed panda’s. Kawaii!
We loved having these girls come visit and I hope we were able to give them a good taste of America.