Host Family Spotlight – May 2017
Getting to Know the Lightners
Name of Family: Denise & Richard Lightner
City/State: Lancaster, CA
Hosting Length: 2 Years
How has hosting a student changed your life?
Before hosting students, my husband and I were emptynesters. Our children are grown and are now living further away from the area. We had friends introduce us to the idea of hosting an international student and honestly it is one of the best experiences we have had as a family. Our international students call our children their siblings and they have even traveled together to China for 10 days through Beijing, Shanghai, and Chengdu. We have traveled as a family, to the Grand Canyon and Hawaii, creating memories that will last a lifetime.
What was your funniest host parent moment?
There are so many! When our family went to the South Wall of the Grand Canyon and our student David saw the view for the first time, he was so in awe he could only say, “Ahh! Ahh!” It was absolutely breathtaking and David was at a complete loss for words! Another time Richard was teaching Dan to learn how to ride a bike. We all had a good laugh through the process and now they have purchased bikes and all ride together!
What is the best advice for other host parents?
Participate. My husband and I go to every practice, every banquet, and every show. We believe it is important to not just drop them off; but rather be a part of their experience. Let them have friends over and know who their friends are. It is important to develop that relationship, watch it grow and manifest in ways that will change your life, and strengthen the bond between you and your student.
Thank you to our 2016-2017 host families!
Every month Twinn Palms features a host family discussing aspects of their personal hosting experience. Would you or a host family you know like to be featured? Featured families will get their story showcased in our monthly newsletters and shared on our Twinn Palms blog.
To nominate yourself or another family, please send a host family nomination email to: [email protected]
Be sure to include the last name of the family, city of the host family residence, and why this family is an outstanding Twinn Palms host family.