Saturday, September 27, 2008

Friday's fun for everyone...

I've never seen anyone enjoy life quite as much as little Alice.

When I started ministering to refugees, I wanted to work only with women. I'd had no preschool training and not much experience (other than raising a couple of boys) with babies and toddlers. Wow -- have I ever changed! I love these little children more than I can express, and I can't wait to see them when I visit. Fun, fun, fun!

These two cute girls are cousins. Little Faith, a petite three-year-old, runs around in shoes that are way too big for her tiny feet. Cousin Ellie is younger but bigger. She always sports a cool hairstyle.
Alfred had missed the school bus today. Oops. Somehow his big brother had made it without him. He enjoyed joining in on the lesson with baby sister and mom. The mothers have fun, too. I gave basic ESL tests to several of my students on Friday. Afterward, I had them draw a face, a house, and a tree. Their giggles told me they had never drawn anything in their lives before! Can you imagine?

I don't often get smiles out of this tired mother, a widow who works the night shift in a chicken factory. But she enjoyed writing out her alphabet for me. I could tell she was proud of her effort.
Take a look at this tree she drew. Stylized, creative, beautiful. I think I have a budding artist!This mom had been washing clothes by hand in the bathtub when I arrived. She was hanging them on her balcony, but she wanted to sit down and get to work on her English right away. I'm so proud of her. She's been in the United States only 4 months, but she is learning English well. She has the cleanest refugee home I've ever seen. I always compliment her.
She and her husband posted on the wall the few photos they have. These are pictures of their life in Africa and precious portraits of loved ones. My friends have hung the pictures as high as possible -- right up against the ceiling. They're terribly proud of their collection, and I know they miss the family they left behind.
I ended my day with a Bible study in a friend's home. She is reaching out to refugee women from Burundi. It cheered my heart to see these women studying God's word.

In case you're not smiling and having fun yet, I'll post another picture of Alice. Who can keep from giggling now?

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