There are 5 days lefts until Staging and 4 days left until I leave home. I've been very productive these last 2 days by making mini "to do" lists and running tons of errands. However, before that I kind of took some time to just let my mind completely relax. I went on a road trip and spent a lot of time just doing things I enjoyed. It's difficult to spread your last days at home out properly. I threw a good bye party at my house so that I could spend some time with family and explain a little more about what I was going to be doing (like I really know at this point). I also cooked them some traditional (or so the internet says) Albanian food with the help of my best friend and father. It was a nice little send off and my family showed me a lot of love and support. As far as actual Peace Corps prep went, I had to take a couple exams and fill out some worksheets. 1 exam was on what to do if physically assaulted and the other was on grammar and teaching techniques. The grammar portion was pretty brutal and took me quite a while to finish. The worksheets were on teaching and lesson planning. One even required a "mock lesson" which didn't go so smoothly, but it's cool. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it.
Today our group found out more about our host families. They may be subject to change, but as of now I am to expect to live with a host mother and father (ages 44 and 40) and 2 host sisters (17 and 9). I am super excited to live with 2 host sisters! Having only 1 older brother, I have always wondered what it would be like to have some younger sisters, and I look forward to being a great role model/influence on these girls. I hope they like me!
Packing-wise..today I bought my toiletries and meds. My suitcase is getting full and I keep telling myself "I WILL NOT OVER-PACK. I WILL NOT OVER-PACK!" I am going to post my final packing list once I'm there, but or now I am still in panic mode. Here are some things that have been on my To-Do lists. I have accomplished most of the tasks, but not all:
-REI trip-money belt, quick drying towel, rechargeable batteries, sleeping bag, high quality travel umbrella
-WalMart trip-meds, toiletries, mini flashlight, battery-operated alarm clock, wet wipes, hair accessories
-DMV- switch plates from Ohio to California
-Purchase Property Insurance
-Close bank account
-Fill out pre-staging papers
-Have Power of Attorney signed
-Get phone unlocked
-Spend time with friends and family--make phone calls/skype dates with far away friends
This post is probably super jumbled up because that's where my thoughts and feelings are right now. I am super excited to go, and while I will miss people here, I take comfort in knowing that the best people always find a way to stay in your life.