Summer week one – welcome back!

Little Ebenezer with his grandmother’s sister, who is so proud
to see how much he’s grown! 

SO! Things have been crazy but fantastic for the last week, I finally have time to sit down and write a quick recap. The kids have, I swear, doubled in size since I was here in December – in a few cases literally! The two new babies are doing really well – Ebenezer and Neema – although poor Ebenezer has a bit of a chest cold that has been giving him trouble. He’s on meds now, so hopefully that’ll be taken care of soon. This time of year is something of a trade off – it’s colder so there are fewer mosquitoes and therefore less malaria, but they get more miscellaneous bugs, especially since they spend a lot of time squished together inside.

Little Maureen going for
 a stroll
Big Ebenezer, showing
off his standing

Vicky, little Maureen, Gracie, and big Ebenezer are all walking beautifully. Filipo and Frankie can walk well with a hand, and with a bit more confidence I think they could easily walk alone, but they sit down immediately when the hand is removed. Hopefully in a few more weeks I’ll have videos and pictures of them walking, too! This group is funny – they can all speak to varying degrees, but mostly choose not to. In particular, Maureen can say pretty much anything she wants to – I’ve caught her singing full, complex songs – but flat out refuses to do it on command. If you didn’t know better, you’d think the whole group was mute! Such a contrast to a year ago when Baracka, big Maureen, Neema, Zawadi, Ester and David were this age – with Baracka and big Maureen chattering away, the rest HAD to start talking to keep up and get their share of attention. No pressure in this group, though!

Maureen (left) and Zawadi

Neema in her LSE gear

The older group is now potty training and starting school, which is fantastic to see – and they’re SO. SMART. I love watching them singing, dancing, drawing, and writing in class – they’re doing extremely well. Neema is also our new LSE MPA mascot – she was too cute in my sweatshirt. Speaking of the LSE, Light Up the Night is going really well – the entire orphanage is MUCH safer with the adjusted switches and outlets, and we’re about to start on the solar lighting for the orphanage and maternity ward (courtesy of fundraising by Kristina and the LSE MPA).

Unfortunately, I haven’t gotten to see Kristina much, as she’s been struck by…. something unpleasant, it’s not totally clear, but she’s sick. Keep your fingers crossed for her! Marie will be here tonight, so we can help take good care of her. I’m also counting down the days until Riz, Adam, Jordan, my mom, and Patty arrive – it’s going to be a full house!

I have a bunch more to say and I haven’t even gotten to the older kids yet… but I have to cut it short for now, my internet time is running out. More to come, soon!