So Tuesday we started revamping the mothers room at church. I was officially the sewing person. From Tuesday night, all day Wednesday. and Thursday night I sewed...recovered 2 chair cushions, 6 pew cushions, 2 sets of curtains, 13 pillows, and 3 blankets. Jodi cut everything for me and I sewed. Took a break to paint a little bit. It looks so nice now! We an art graduate and a designer help with the layout of the walls. It's Joseph and his colorful coat. With pyramids, camels, palm trees...the river Nile! Can't wait to see it with all the new stuff in!
Next week school will start back up for the kids who've been on holiday this week cuz of Easter.
Yesterday I went to hospital to visit Phillipos who was admitted from hospice on Tuesday. He is so skinny. His test came back positive for Meningitis (the same kind as Boutimelo) and he will be there for 2 weeks.
Weather here has finally cleared up and its been sunny and COLD! Sunday I'm running a 15k and it's looking like it will be rainy.
I have a friend from Montana coming next week for a safari/hunt and we'll be able to hang out before he leaves on the 14th! So I'm excited to see someone for the States :)
I can't believe I only have only month left here. It's going so fast. I'm not sure yet as to whether I will be coming back for a longer time period, but I'm thinking about it.
I've been officially rehired as head coach for swim team back home for this summer, so looking forward to that!
Sorry this is kinda random, but updating best I can't at this time I'm sitting at the office.
Have a lovely weekend!
Friday, April 29, 2011
Thursday, April 28, 2011
April 25, 2011
All the kids are on school holiday this whole week. Today a bouncing castle was put up at 82 and the kids played there for the entire day!
Good Friday I went to the morning service. I was doing the childrens talk that morning. It went really well! I made 12 mini boxes and put little things in each one to represent the story of Easter. A nail for the cross, bread for the Last Supper, etc. I numbered the boxes and had the children open them then read a Scripture with each one. After the sermon, some of us went to Pastor Lance's house for coffee, tea, and hot cross buns.
Sunday morning I woke up at 4:30am. On of my friends was having a sunrise service at here house. She has this apartment with a great view! But is was raining :P so we sat inside. There was about 12 of us. We sang songs, prayed and read the Easter story. Had hot cross buns and coffee too! I love the verses about the women going early to the tomb to give Jesus a proper burial. Wondering what they were thinking and feeling...and to be met with a glorious surprise that He is Risen! He is Risen indeed! So powerful. It was amazing to be hearing that Scripture while watching the sunrise. (It stopped raining and cleared up to see a beautiful sunrise!)
We went right to church after that. After church we were to cook eggs and bacon and our cell group was in charge of it. So we set up the coffee and tea and cracked all the eggs to be ready to cook right after :)
This week our cell group is revamping the mothers room at church. The roof has been leaking and making the carpet all smelly. So we're going to put tile flooring and paint the walls, sew curtains and recover cushions. Tomorrow night we meet at the church to prep the room and Wednesday is a public holiday so we'll be wokring there all day.
Happy Easter everyone! He is risen! He is risen indeed :)
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Wow, it's been over a week since my last post! Sorry about that...by the time I get to my room every day I'm just to tired to think lol.
So the first week back at school was last week and it went well. Unathi the girl I drive to school every morning has been crying the whole 20+ minute drive though. She has brain damage cause by a stroke at age 2. Lyn said that she goes through spurts crying all the way to school, she hadn't done it at all since I've been here, but since coming back from school holiday there hasn't been a quiet morning.
Oh! Boitumelo got discharged from the hospital last Thursday! I wen to visit him and they were like he can go home today. He shouldn't of come home though, he was pretty bad off on friday...to make a long story short, he's doing much better than he was, he's not throwing up anymore and not in a lot of pain. Thank you for your prayers and continue doing so! The newest addition to the hospice is a 12 year old boy who is very sick, he's very skinny, but not as bad as Koketso. He came to us from Pretoria. He meds were all messed up and he has TB and meningitis. He's pretty bad off emotionally to :( pray for him.
This morning I got up early to go with Sibylle to Bara to take Junior from the hospice to a check-up with the neurosurgeon. The way this works is get there early like 6 or 7 to get in line first or you'll be there all day. Doctors don't start seeing patients until 11am after there rounds. I went to help with Junior, because of his brain damage the way he expresses his joy and angry is by screaming (very loud) and we took turns taking him out in the halls in the pram to calm him down. At one point he was so tired he just wouldn't stop screaming. But he's so loving and smart, just needs affection and love. He doesn't need to be at hospice anymore, the social worker is trying to find a place for him.
Homework with the grades 4 and 5 in the afternoons is going well. Grade 5 is doing fractions for maths. (ask my mom how much I love fractions, not!) Yeah, so it's a refresher for me in the respect haha. There are 4 who are in 5th grade and 2 who are in 4th grade that I help.
So my days have been starting at 7am and ending at 4pm usually. This past weekend was freezing cold! Needed heaters and extra blankets, and I'm told it's going to get colder. But it's been slowly warming up this week. The kids have Easter break this weekend and next week.
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Went to 82 Saturday morning because all the Lambano kids were to go there for an Easter egg hunt! An organization brought presents for the kids with birthdays from Jan-Mar...there was 12 who did. Then they all got cupcakes and party packs and after went to the other side of the house to find Easter egg which the Easter bunny had hide. Of course they all knew that it was someone in costume lol. But Unathi was freaked out by it, if he would even walk in her direction she was pulling my arm off lol.
Boiutmelo was taken to Joburg Gen Hospital on Wednesday morning because the pain in his head was so severe. I missed church today and went to see him this morning with Jenna. The lively, smiling child that I've been teaching the sounds of the alphabet and who would give me a look of “are you serious” when I would give him too simple of math problems :) because he knew them so well, has been reduced to a solemn, wabbit boy. It was crazy how fast he depleted...in the matter of a day. He has 4 serious illness that can kill him. TB, HIV+, cancer, and meningitis. The type of meningitis he's had, has a 26% chance of survival and Boitumelo has had it twice in the last year. This child is very ill. We got there at 10am and washed him and changed his bedding. The hospitals don't do the basic caring here, most of the mothers of the child do it and if they don't have mothers, well then no one really does. Jenna read him a story then went to buy him some yogurt. I gave him some juice to drink will she was gone and he throw it back up...he has the looks of getting dehydrated since he hasn't been eating much. We sat with him for 3 hours he responded to our touch and wouldn't let go of my hand. He didn't say more than 2 words. And he didn't want us to go. Believe me it was so hard to walk away. Sibylle is visiting him tomorrow than I'm going on Tuesday. He's heavy on my heart now and it's hard to see him in pain. I'm reminding myself God is Sovereign, but when I'm faced with the actually situation of this suffering boy...it's hard. Don't know whether to pray he gets well, or that Jesus will take him to be with Him. But God is in control and he has a plan!
School starts in the morning, it's been a nice holiday to have a break from the usual routine. Bus I will be with school runs and homework. I'm only here for 9 more weeks and I know it will go fast since the 3 months I've been here have seemed to fly by. I'm focusing on my time here now, this is where God wants me, of this I am confident. But considering the future after this summer a few options come up, one is returning to Lambano for a longer time frame. God has a plan and I trust Him...He's brought me this far in regards to my calling for Africa. I don't know if this was just the work He has had for me to do here, some other places in the world have been coming up for me to go. That is in the back of my mind, right now my focus in on the 30 kids here at Lambano...the 7 in hospice...and the one in the hospital.
Thank you for your prayers, support and encouragement!
Friday, April 8, 2011
Wednesday I went to the mall with a girl from Texas who has been here with another organization in another part of Joburg. Her mom is a teacher and her class raised over $300 for us to use at hospice specifically for school and educational supplies. So I took her to the mall and we got some book and other things I'd need for teaching the hospice kids! It was perfect :) The rest of the money will go for medical expenses at hospice.
Speaking of which, please keep Lambano in your prayers. No funds have been coming in at this point. God has kept Lambano going for 10 years now this month! Staff here are trusting Him to continue in His faithfulness.
Today a church in Edenvale took all Lambano kids (30 permanent kids and 3 from the hospice) to the movie theater. We saw the movie Rio! Jenna held Vuyo and I held Simphwe and they feel asleep for apart of the movie :) After they were taken for happy meals at McDonalds. It was really fun!
It is starting to get colder here. 2 days this week were cloudy and windy brrr...winter is not far of it seems like :P
School start back up on Monday!
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Today has been a pretty relaxed day. Had the staff meeting at lunchtime and that went well. It's been cold and overcast all day. Sunday afternoon the rain turned into hail for about 10 minutes and the hailstones were about the size of large blueberries! Ouch! My ceiling at 82 has been leaking everytime it rains and it was starting to mold and smell. I move to the over flat at 78 yesterday so that they can fix the roof and ceiling. Don't know if I'll stay here the remainder of my time, but I'm fine either way. I have a small kitchen were I'm staying now and the internet signal works way better here too. Also the Lambano vehicles I use for the school run are parked here so that is better when school starts I won't need to walk every morning over to get them.
Yesterday was a hot day and the electricity was out at the office because the lighting hit something that caused it to out during the weekend. Martha decided to take all Lambano boy shopping for new pajamas. So I drove the Kia with 13 boys and her (the younger ones stayed home). Sure, yeah it was quite entertaining taking 13 hyper boys to the mall to shop, but it was fun too!
I skyped one of my friends early this morning and I just finished skyping with Mike one of the church deacons. Skype is amazing! I can't wait to Skype my family. I can't use my video much cuz it slows down too much but at least I can see all the faces back home!
This coming weekend will be 3 months since I've been in South Africa...and I can hardly believe I have 2 months left! It will go by fast!
Boutimelo is not doing well. He is throwing up and in pain right now. They are taking him to the hospital in the morning. When I first got here and he went to hospital I hadn't really gotten to know him, it still was terrible to think of him dying but it wasn't as hard to pray and trust God with him. Now I know him...I've spent time with him, I've prayed with him, I've taught him...I love him. Nothing can truly prepare me for a child to die. He has been doing so well since he came back from hospital, smiling and laughing. The yesterday he was in bed when I went to see him but he was sleeping. I think about him dying and my heart hurts...but he won't be in as much pain if he goes to be with Jesus.
The new baby Ntokozo was put on oxygen yesterday. He is the cutest thing beside being so sickly and skinny...so lively and always smiling!
Please remember these dear children in your prayers this week.
Monday, April 4, 2011
Sunday, April 3, 2011
Yesterday Lambano had its jumble sale aka yard sale. I was there to help set up at 9:30. We had at least 20 or more garbage bags full of clothes that we sorted through and 12 boxes. Separated things on sheets at house 34 by price, like R1, R2 R5 etc. The staff were the first to go through everything and it was funny watching them see something at the same time and go for it. Or one would grab it and run being chased. We finished it up about 2pm and gathered all the rest of the clothes to take to the squatter camp. I didn't go since the Kombi was crammed full and no room for people. Martha and I went for coffee after that :)
Today after church an Indian lady brought lunch for Lambano. So all the houses met at 82. She brought over 100 hot dogs and there were no leftovers. There is about over 30 kids including hospice and ten the house mothers and volunteers. Then it started pouring rain...which I've gotten used to it being a beautiful clear day and have a thunderstorm appear out of no where! We all got ice cream cones and went into the lounge and watched Horton Hears a Who. It was a good time.
Mama Barbara drove them all back to their house just now and the rest of the kids are going down for a rest. I'm in my room now crammed onto one side. Last big storm my roof was leaking and water collected above my bed. So now I have a hole in my ceiling and every time it rains it leaks and then it smells moldy for a few days after. I'm going to ask If I can move to the other cottage at 78 until it gets fixed. I don't think it would be a problem because at this point I'm the only volunteer until June. Plus I bought internet for the month of April and I have yet to see if I get a better signal at 78 for skyping because I don't here at 82.
There is no evening service at our church tonight because of school holiday. I have start playing the piano for evening worship. So tonight I might go with Martha and another girl to Cornerstone Church for the evening service there.
Pastor Lance was out of town this weekend to go to a wedding so there was a visiting pastor preaching. It was a good message. In the book of Mark comparing how people received Jesus at the start of the chapter they didn't in Nazareth and then at another place they did. He quoted John Piper towards the end of his message. I've heard it before but it was good to be reminded. Something along the lines of would you be happy in heaven if Jesus wasn't there? There's no more hurting in heaven you are with all your loved ones...but if Christ wasn't there could you still be happy? I know that I wouldn't. Jesus is everything to me and I want be where He is regardless of the circumstances.
Friday, April 1, 2011
This week has been good in terms of I'm getting lots of rest. It's nice being able to lie in until 9am instead of getting up at 6am lol. One more week of school holiday! Tuesday was windy and cold, I had to bring out my sweat shirt! Wednesday was hot and I ended up swimming with the House 34 kids at 82...and got a little sunburnt :P
Thursday was another hot day. Went to Fruit and Veg with Martha. That afternoon I was to go with House 36 to the Children's Theatre. Since they were too young to go to the zoo on Saturday it was arranged for them to do this. Uncle Philly drove us so I would know where it was and then he went home and I was too drive back. It was in a familiar area I've been before so I wasn't completely ignorant of the locate. The play was Pippi Longstocking and it was quite entertaining. The kids really enjoyed it. The drive back was ok, traffic was back up on the highway so it took twice as long to get home. The kids were a lot quieter on the drive back since half of them were asleep :) Made it back in time to go play touch rugby and actually scored for my team this time! Woohoo!
Today is swimming lessons with the younger kids. Saturday is the Jumble Sale from 10 to 4 and I'm to help with that. Remember when I wrote about sorting 20 bags of clothes? Well this is what they were for!
We got another baby at the Hospice. He is 6 months old and came to us because of failure to thrive. He's not putting on any weight, just losing. He is super skinny compared to Bheki and Khaya the other babies at hospice that our 6 months old, but he is very active! Also my have a very sick 14 year old boy come to hospice...not sure yet, last I knew he was semi unconscious from being so sick so might not leave the hospital. Jenna said that he's just like Kokesto was...skin and bones, maybe even worse. So will see how this next week goes in regards to him. On Wednesday the police brought us a little 3 year old girl who someone found wandering around one of the squatter camps. She was so scared and crying. Thankfully the parents where found later that day and she went home.