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Australia Bound

No ... not me, though I wish. It's Becky! Can you believe that? My daughter is going to Australia before me. All at once I'm excited, jealous, nervous and a bit scared. I'm excited at the prospect of traveling so far (until of course I remember, I'm not going). I'm jealous - well because she is. But nervous and scared because I'm her mom and that's just a natural reaction to the thought of your fifteen year-old travelling half-way around the world without you.

She's heading overseas with People to People, which I had been vaguely aware of before she received her invitation letter. Now, I've come to realize it's a huge organization. I can't believe how many kids I know that went on one of their trips and I just didn't realize it.

The process goes, first you get your invitation letter. Then you attend a 60-minute informational meeting. Then you must apply. As part of that, you have to submit three letters of recommendation, two from teachers, one from someone else. Finally, you have an interview (which turned out to be a group interview - with 9 other kids), and then you're in. It sounds more involved than it actually was.

Once you're accepted you have between four and six meetings where the kids learn about each other and about the country (or countries) of their destination. These meetings last from two to three hours each. Last night we had our first one and parents were encouraged to stay (we're not required to stay for the second or third but must return for the fourth). We didn't do much other than organize into committees (food - three hour meetings - there must be food, bon voyage party, reunion party, and then some research committees). The research committees need to get information on cell phone rentals and purchase, Visa buxx cards, and hiring a bus to get the kids to the airport on departure day. I didn't sign up for any of those, choosing reunion instead - hey what can I say it sounded like more fun. Though I will do some research on my own using SlowTrav into the cell phone thing. We're still not sure if she's taking one or not.

Since Becky was in the first round of interviews, I (along with the other parents at that interview), got snagged into bringing snacks for last night's meeting. I thought I'd go with the theme.

australia_cookies.jpg

We served kangaroos, crocodiles and sheep. People got a kick out of them, but man they were a lot of work. Next time, maybe airplanes.

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Other Thinks (9)

Nice snacks! This program sounds very cool. My sister and I both did similar programs with Lions Club youth exchange and it was great. Will she stay with a host family or is it like a camp? How long will she be gone?

I am sure she is a terrific traveler just like her mom!

This is exciting - my big school trips were Ottawa and Washington DC. wow

Kim:

It's crazy isn't it? When I was in school, we went to DC for an overnight (the last class to do so because of ... well ... problems).

She's going for 18 days. They'll stay in hotels/hostels except for a two-night home-stay near the end of the trip.

Anne:

Oh Kim, I'm tensing up just at the thought of YOUR daughter travelling so far away. Mine's only going to New York for March break and I'm worried I'll be fretting the whole time. You are a very brave (and cool) mama!! Awesome cookie baker too!

Eden:

How exciting for you daughter, Kim! My two boys participated in a similar organization - Children's International Summer Villages. They had an entire month of interchanges. (One went to Klagenfurt, Austria and the other to Kyoto, Japan.) They stayed with families. The following summers we hosted the children (similar in ages) from the host families. They also stayed with us for a month. My daughter chose not to participate because I could not go with her - silly girl.

I love the cookies. You are such a cool Mom.

To learn a bit about the current events in Oz, check out the podcasts at ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting) on ITunes.

Canobie Lake in New Hampshire is the farthest I ever remember going on a school trip.

I loved the treats. I never thought of crocodiles when thinking of Australia.

What a wonderful opportunity for her. Love the cookies, they look cute, too bad they're so much work.

Alot my friends have adolescent kids and have these big worries of nearing adult-hood. They tell me hair raising stories and then are so excited about my new arrival. 5 weeks to count down.

I love those cookies. Almost every year I make gingerbread men and decorate them elaborately. Then there were the jack russell ginger bread cookies.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 27, 2008 6:52 AM.

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