Every year when we sign up to homestay, there is a little bit of apprehension, a slight twinge of doubt in the back of my mind as to whether or not it is a good idea to bring complete strangers into my home with my own children. Each year I end the time wishing we could have just one more week and missing you all so much. You have again reinforced in me that having you all in the house is a blessing, not a risk. You are a breath of fresh air! It was apparent to me after a day or two of week one that you had made a special friend in Gary. He adores you, and now that you have stayed with us, I understand why. You were the first smiling face I saw every morning in the kitchen. You have a fantastic way of connecting with my kids, from the hand hearts you shared with Gary across the auditorium, to tickling the boys on the floor “till they wet themselves.” I will never understand how you can go there every day, deal with all those other peoples kids like mine, do it with grace and compassion, then come back to a strange place and still have the patience to keep dealing with those same kids at night. You are amazing!
As a performer, you are truly blessed, and I know it is hard work, but you do it so well. I saw the show every time, every week, and your “This is me” performance brought me to tears each time. You have a real gift, and I wish for you that it takes you everywhere you dream.
If that ever lands you back in Northern Michigan, either with or without the Young Americans, know that you have extra family here! We adore you, and there is always a safe place to stay, a warm meal and a house full of smiles waiting here for you