It is just starting to feel like Christmas here at Orphanage Emmanuel! The container that is shipped from the United States arrived on Wednesday- containing packages that many people have sent to the children. I can’t wait to send you all a picture of what the tree and presents look like! It took over 26 hours to organize the presents for all the children, label, wrap and stack them under the tree. And it’s done!
This week has flown by for our family. We’ve had a pretty bumpy few days there with my own kids adjusting, but these last few have gone well. Guy has made a sweet friend named Kenzie. She is in the Little Girls house, seven years old with a quick smile. She loves to play tag and chase and climb on the monkey bars and this past week she and Guy have been inseparable for all of the hours we are there. When I shower the girls at night she loves to stand in the echoing space and make quaking duck noises with her hands and mouth for as loud and as long as she possibly can. Those of you that know Guy can imagine that yes, she is a perfect friend match for him. They think the other is hysterical and it is so FUN to see them become friends despite such differences in life, language and culture.
Some things that are not so fun? Sending my kids to bed hungry because they decided not to eat perfectly good orphanage food. : ( We attend every meal with the Little Girl House, but don’t require our kids to eat every meal. One evening that we did, it was on our menu plan- there was whining, while everyone else ate it right up. So the option passed and Elena and the boys went to sleep with nothing in their belly since 10 a.m. We all re-learned that hunger is very uncomfortable. How blessed we are to have insane amounts and healthy varieties of food available to us most of the time in America. Joey, Guy and Elena (and even me- the pickiest one of all!) now eat what is in front of us. Even when we dislike it, which honestly, is most of the time.
Joe is loving the woodshop, they work, talk, take a break and eat bananas and cookies, teach/work some more… repeat. His Spanish is surpassing mine (I tend to say the same phrases over and over – “Come here, How are you today?, Where did you leave your sweatshirt?, Whose is this?, Please speak more slowly…”). A local man works in the woodshop and told Joe he could get him 40 bananas for one dollar. Tomorrow we are expecting 40 bananas- I’ll let you know if anything got lost in translation/transaction.
I think that's about it for an update-
The mornings here are cold, the days are hot, and the nights are cold again. Tonight I hugged Joey and Guy fresh from the shower, in clean pajamas and realized that my children are starting to smell like beans and Honduran Laundry detergent. In fact, they smell just like the children in Orphanage Emmanuel at the end of the day,and that means fed and cleaned.
And in America or Honduras, it is really all children need: to be fed, to be cleaned, to be safe, to be loved.
And we are reminded again and again- it is the small simple basics that hold up a life.