A Busy Week!

Banange! As they say in Luganda, “Wow!” This was a busy week!  Kind of made up for week one waiting around in Kampala. This week began on Sunday for us with the MCM Christmas party. The party preparations began the day before with lots of food being purchased in the market and the women of the church all coming to our home to peel, cut, and begin the food to be served at the party. Sunday these same women returned early in the morning and started four fires outside our backdoor. Bricks were used to hold up the enormous kettles of food that were cooked for hours before serving at 4 pm. The children arrived after church promptly at 3 pm. We expected 38 and 47 came. Adults numbered 13 for a grand total of 60! In Uganda it is not unusual to invite 45 and have 60 come. Some of the extra children who came were children who are still on our waiting list so we were happy to have them attend.

Ivan started the events by inviting all the guests to come into the living room to sit on benches brought up from the church. Everyone fit! So grateful for this home with room enough for  parties! He prayed, introduced himself and the ministry and collected children’s Progress Reports.  Then Ivan introduced me and I spoke a bit about the sponsors and their love and hope and desire to help the children here in the mountains of Kabale. Ivan translated for me. The children basically sat transfixed staring at me. I asked Ivan to ask them if they had any questions. “How old are you?” one of our teen girls asked. “Me?” I replied and she nodded yes.  Ha!! Of all the questions that you could be asked I was NOT expecting that one! I lied of course…told her I was 36…Ha!!  Just kidding  I told the truth. I also told them I am a Grandma “Jaajja” and did a little happy dance for them all to know without a doubt I was very excited for Gracie!

After I spoke Ivan invited 6 children to the front of the room. These children each had performed exceptionally well in their progress reports ranking first in their class or in the top levels. They ranged in age from 3 to 19 as baby classes get graded as well. Ivan had to teach the 3 year old how to give him a high five. Performing well and behaving well and honoring God with their gifts was the subject of the Pastors short message too. Finally it was time for all that wonderful food!! Plates were literally piled high and eaten all around the house and outside too.  Everyone enjoyed the great meal! So grateful for those same women who cooked, cleaned up too!

Then we cut the cake…several kids joined hands on the cake knife and sliced the first slice while Ivan, ever the instigator of fun, sprayed the unsuspecting kids with soda that had been shook. These are mountain children, it is possible some of them had never had a soda before much less known the results of shaking pop! Ha! Their faces were dripping and the 3 year old looked completely confused. No one felt bad though, in fact the room erupted with squeals of delight and laughter. After all, cake is also unheard of  in these parts and this cake had white icing with pink decorations! Life was good! The party ended with gifts being passed out and a movie (Madagascar) being played for about 30 minutes. The children all had to walk home and so we had to allow time for them to walk during daylight, Some needed 40 minutes to make the journey home. All in all a very successful party! A Big Thank you to all of you who contributed to this wonderful party celebrating Christmas and the new year of school beginning.

The remainder of this week Ivan and I worked on the budget and proposing a new budget for 2014 to the board members for approval at the board meeting, tomorrow, February 8. Lots of receipts and laughter around the kitchen table with music playing…Ivan does such a great job of keeping everything organized for when we have to do this least favorite job. Happy to report that God has been good and we are honoring Him with our resources. Things are tight as we have 35 children and 24 sponsored but God has been sooo good! No complaints here.

Next week is my final week. It will be a week of interviewing the children. Cannot believe it has been going so fast!

Thanks for your continued prayers!

Many blessings!