We all love bubbles…

As I’m sure my parents, and probably a few others, would
agree, having little children in the school holidays can be a bit stressful. If
you then multiply the number of kids with too much time on their hands by about
24, you get the holidays at the orphanage.
The teachers at the orphanage are amazing, and going to
school is huge part of the day for everybody from Zawadi and Neema’s age group
upwards. It also works out some of their crazy excess energy so that they are
all sleepy for naptime after lunch. One of my favourite memories of our recent
trip was watching Kantate (one of the teachers) organise running races across
the front of the orphanage grass before school in the morning, seeing Zawadi and
Miriam showing off their best running styles, Big Ebenezer risk getting flattened
as he wandered aimlessly across the racetrack, Eman winning every race
effortlessly, and Tumaini really not being too happy about it!
As a result, when school is not on, everybody is full of
beans and raring to go. One of the most fool-proof ways to entertain them, and
work off some of that energy, is to get out the bubbles:

….and an hour and a half later….

They are always a hit and the kids really can do this for
hours and hours. I hope everyone spotted Frankie trying to eat the bubbles in
that last video! (13 seconds in)

(The real joy comes when there is a really big bubble that
everyone wants to pop; the real challenge is learning to blow extra-big bubbles
on demand as everyone shouts “Kubwa! Kubwa! Mimi kubwa!!” (Big! Big! A big one
for me!!) every five seconds. Unfortunately we didn’t get a video of this, but
the highlight of my bubble-blowing morning was when I did
manage to blow a really big bubble, but if went too high and everyone missed it.
After a lot of pointing and shouting and jumping, the kids stood literally
open-mouthed, necks craning at the sky, watching this bubble get higher and
higher and linger, still intact, right over the top of the orphanage roof. We never
did see it pop, it went right up and over to the other side of the building!
The only problem was that I couldn’t repeat this miracle on request – and there
were a lot of requests!

Here are a few pictures, just to show you how much the kids
really do love bubbles:
Pray’s gymnastics and high jumps to get there first are always impressive – rivalled occasionally by Baraka 

Neema was determined to get whole clouds of bubbles all by herself.
Zi makes up for not being able to reach by swinging with her cardigan!
I think Ester was just posing really 🙂
And my personal favourite: Miriam is unable to contain her excitement!
One piece of good news this week is that the Small Things has been able to find sponsors for Daniel’s education. Daniel is an orphan who was struggling to raise the money to start secondary school. He had already managed to get a part scholarship thanks to his impressive grades finishing primary school. From the newspaper article, it’s clear Daniel has not had the easiest life. We are very happy that thanks to the generosity of Lonnie, Garry, Wendy, Susan and the Somji family, we will be able to pay the remainder of Daniel’s school fees and living costs for this year, as well as put a bit away towards next year. It is really great to be able to help someone who will make the most of the support the way Daniel will.

Read more about Daniel at: http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/news/4-national-news/28862-dreams-in-jeopardy-as-disabled-child-struggles-to-raise-fees.html 

On a final happy note, we are really pleased to be able to
tell everyone who may not have seen it on Facebook that Neema Ndogo is much
better and back at the orphanage, and is likely to be falling asleep into her food once again.
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