Friday, November 30, 2018

Thursday November 29, 2018

Our last day was jam packed as we wrapped up at three different locations.  We started the morning with an hour long drive back to Holeta.  We helped the kids write to their sponsor families and complete an art project.  The were so well behaved.  We had 36 seven-year olds in one small room.  They all worked quietly and diligently to complete the project, sharing the supplies with each other.  

Our sponsor child Desta was in this room, so we got to spend some time with her as well.

Then it was lunch time, Orange Mirinda soda and sandwiches.  The Mirinda comes in glass bottles that have to be returned.  Knowing this, many of the kids returned to the care point with plastic bottles from home and then poured their soda into them so they could take their drinks with them and savor them or perhaps share them with a sibling at home.
 All of these girls go to school together. 

After this, sweet Lomi sought us out to say goodbye.  She was much less shy today and it was nice to see her smiling and more comfortable. The fact that we were spending time with her at all was an answered prayer. We learned just before our trip that Lomi had moved away from the care point further into the country side about a month prior and was no longer in the program.  I was so disappointed to hear this. The kids at our church have formed a bond with her and have been so eager to support her through sponsorship.  We prayed that we would at least get to meet her while we were in Holeta so that we could tell her in person how much she is loved, even if it would be for the last time.  Well, God worked out a little miracle and shortly after arriving to Ethiopia we found out that her mother decided that the school in Holeta was better for Lomi and they had recently moved back so she could again be in the sponsorship program. Her home is still a 30 minute walk to the care point, but Lomi does not seem to mind the walk and appears thrilled to be back in Holeta.

After saying goodbye to all of the kids, we headed back to Korah to pick up the rest of our crew and say our goodbyes there.  I got to see Ato, the elderly man that required medical attention earlier in the week. He looked so much better and smiled and praised God for his recovery.  We are praying he will be back on his feet and fully recovered soon.

Then it was off to I Care to meet the 21 kids who do not have sponsor families there. We got some great pictures of these kids and got to know a little about each one.  I’ll be posting details on how you can sponsor one of them and be a part of the great work that is taking place at I Care.  Ayne then generously gifted us with beautiful traditional Ethiopian dresses for the girls and shirts for the guys.  They are some of the prettiest designs I’ve ever seen.  She has great taste.

We stopped and picked up dinner at the best restaurant in Ethiopia, Bake and Brew.  It’s a newer restaurant owned buy a guy from UK and it has the most delicious breakfasts, sandwiches and desserts.  It’s completely up to code and you can even eat salad there (although I still didn’t branch out too far, I did have the avocado toast a couple of times and spinach and mushroom omlette).

We wrapped up our day relaxing and packing at the guest house before heading to the airport. From the time we got dropped off at the airport until we arrive back at home it will be about 32 or 33 hours of travel time.  As I type this, we are on hour 4 of an 8 hour layover in Turkey.  The girls are working on math homework, Nick is sleeping and we are chilling in a quaint café. I was dreading this layover, but it has actually been rather nice to hang out here.  Next time we fly this route though we will plan on staying in the airport hotel which has an hourly rate.  Our next flight is almost 12 hours to DC and then just a short hour and a half flight home.

We are so thankful for our time in Ethiopia.  Thank you again to everyone who made it possible.  I always say that I have to go back periodically to reset my focus.  To have distraction free time in a home with 8 children is a complete luxury. It  is always a blessing for me to get away to the place where God meets me so closely. So, until next time, “Chow Ethiopia, ameseganalo!”

Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land. Proverbs 25:25

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