I knew I would be spending my Friday at the house in Jutiapa, so I spent my Thursday back at the CNI.
It was a fun, but bittersweet day. While I loved working on the house and getting to know Sadit and Sandra….I missed having a full week to really get to know the CNI kids. (I’m pretty sure the remedy to this would be a two week long mission trip….not sure they could stand me for that long though!)
Also, I spent a lot of the ‘free’ time with the kids taking their photos. I had this (in my mind) fabulous idea to get a psuedo portrait style photo of each of the kids, get them printed and inexpensively framed, then send them back with our June team to take home. The kids love seeing photos of themselves, and I’m not sure if their moms have photos of their kids, so I thought it would be nice.
Then my camera hiccuped and deleted all the photos.
I consoled myself with the idea that the time I spent taking the photos was really what was important…because the whole time I got to talk to each kid, one on one. About their family, their pets, just little stuff, but talking with them. Learning their personalities. Some of the boys had the sweetest smiles, while others would pose with a very serious face. The girls all wanted to have their nails done before their photo (we took little bottles of nail polish and did lots of nails!) Everyone wanted to see their photo and be sure that it looked good…and a few demanded retakes when they thought I hadn’t captured their best side!
It was also nice to see so many of the kids that I knew from last time. The changes in them were very impressive.
Celia! She touched my heart last time because she shares the same name as my own little one, and she was so sweet and quiet. She’s still just as sweet as sugar, but oh so smart now! And she has the most perfectly beautiful penmanship. While script cursive is almost extinct here in the states, it’s what the children primarily use in honduras.
Gloria! Gloria has never been quiet or shy, but she’s grown into such a beautiful young woman! Gloria is deaf, and while she is not mute, she has never been taught to speak. She was among the first set of kids to come to the CNI, and then children just started showing up. When they were asked how they heard about the CNI, or who told them to come, they would explain, “Gloria told us about it.” Though she rarely makes much noise, she has a big personality and communicates (with us gringas) just as easily as the other children.
Elmer. On our last trip, he was the smallest kid at the CNI. Just tiny for his age. He didn’t really play with the other kids, or talk to anyone. He just wandered. Like a little lost sheep. If he was in your group, you had to just keep extra eyes on him, or he would just wander off. Now, you wouldn’t know he’s the same kid. He plays with all the other boys, doing all the typical ‘boy’ things. They have this game they play, with plastic disks that come in chip bags. Daz? (i think that’s what it’s called. i can’t remember for sure) You play with a friend, each of you put in a disk and throw. If yours lands face up, and their lands face down, you win their disk.
So many new faces too….I was a bit sad to not learn all of their names.
Brenda (I am such a sucker for little girls with braids or beads in their hair!)
The littlest one of all (she got LOTS of attention this week)
All lined up for snack! So cute to see them in a line, from smallest to tallest!
For our lessons, we reviewed the previous three days lessons (they remembered them all!!) and talked about forgiveness. We took Silly Bands (which translates to ‘Silly Band’) for the kids. Tie died crosses…one to keep and always remember that through Christ, they are forgiven. One to give away to someone that they have anger with..because as Christ forgave us, we need to forgive others.
Then we reviews our body part lessons. First with “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes” then with Simon Says, then we tried to do the Hokey Pokey. Somehow, that translates to ‘HOKEY HOKEY HOKEY!”. It was hilarious and ridiculous all at the same time.
We had planned to walk up ‘The Hill’ and help the construction crew up there, but around 2:45, just as all the kids had left, the van with that crew pulled up. They needed to load up more sand, but there was a large gathering at the bottom of the hill that prevented them from getting back to the work site. I was never really clear….we thought it was part of the funeral at first (the foreman’s father had been killed the previous day. he worked as a security guard and was shot as some criminals tried to take his gun) but there were many armed guards there, so I don’t know. In any case, work was over for the day.
We had a few hours before dinner with our families and shopping with our team. I spent some time at Sandra and Dago’s house, playing with their grandkids and just talking. Once my host family was home, I went back over and talked with Erika as we watched the younger kids ride bikes (aka, walk the dogs) We have so much in common. Both of us had our oldest sons while still in our teens, and our youngest daughters are the same age. She loves pets, and loves to garden. Sitting on the curb, surrounded by neighbors (most of which go to the church) really makes me want to live in that kind of community.