Sunday, August 31, 2014

Peaceful Day at BG

Today was a calm day in the city of Maseru. We have heard rumors that the march scheduled for tomorrow have been canceled, but we will wait and see what the morning brings. There are so many rumors and so much finger pointing that we really have no idea what to believe. So when our staff get here in the morning, we will just check in what what they saw on the way in as well as what they have heard on the radio. We thank you for your prayers and ask that you continue to pray for our government as there is so much strife and conflict that I fear, in time, it could have a bad impact on what we are trying to do here at BG, provide our kids with a loving family whether local or overseas.

The kids here at BG had a relaxing and peaceful day. I love the bliss that kids can have when they do not know or understand the bad things happening all around them. All they knew was that there was a new family to hang out with as the Curtis family arrived yesterday and spent some time playing with all the kids at playgroup today. Nothing like a bunch of cute kids to give us hugs and smiles and take all our worries away. God uses many avenues to bring us peace and the Beautiful Gate kids are just one of those.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Political troubles in Lesotho

There has been some political unrest in our city. The parliament has ben shut down since June and was scheduled to reopen on Monday. We were warned to stay on campus that day, so we were planning to head into town this weekend for supplies. At 5:30am last night there were gunshots heard in town and the military surrounded the police stations and the state building. Beautiful Gate is on the outskirts of town and has not been affected by this, but we were surprised to find this news as we awoke today. Please pray for Lesotho and that there will be a peaceful outcome to these conflicts. We do not know what to expect on Monday but we can all rest easily because we know that our God is far bigger than these troubles!

Here are a few links from NY times

Here is a link to the BBC article

Like I said, we are all fine and going to just play it safe and stay on campus. Thank you very much for remembering Lesotho in your prayers.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Safely Home

Our family took 10 days to have a time to be together and reconnect, but also to see a bit more of this huge continent we live in. We traveled to Mozambique and spent 5 days by the ocean and wow, it was so beautiful. We were in a bay so there were not many waves and our kids swam in the pool and in the ocean non-stop. As I watched them splashing and playing, I just smiled seeing their pure joy. This vacation gave us a few days of no interruption and we had so much fun together. Amazingly, we managed the whole trip with no sunburns, so good job African sunscreen!

We did go snorkeling for one day but the ocean was not cooperative and we swallowed a lot of salt water as we tried to swim with big waves going over us and into our snorkels. Elijah and Faith braved it for a little while but Mercy was not going to get her face wet. Then they dropped us off on an island for a few hours and it was beautiful and it had a huge sand dune we could climb and more snorkeling with no waves. The kids were in heaven and ran all over the island.

Our last few days were spent in Swaziland and there was more to do there than we could squeeze in, but we did get to watch a man making candles and he spoiled my kids by asking them their favorite animal and then making it while they watched him and then he gave it to them for no charge. We also went to a glass blowing factory and saw some really beautiful things made from recycled glass. The kids read posters all about blowing glass and the process of making different glass items but did not get to see anyone blow glass because it was a Sunday.

We LOVED our time away and it was good for each one of us to have that time together, but we were all very happy to be back in Lesotho on Sunday night. It was nice to greet everyone at the border in the language we are now familiar with and it was just good to be back at Beautiful Gate and see our friends here. Beautiful Gate is such a great place to be and while the ocean and palm trees were beautiful, the weather was warm and inviting, and we had no worries for a few days, we are happy to be back home!
Our first house in Mozambique - 1 night only.

A pic in front of the glass blowing factory in Swaziland.

The view from our house in Mozambique where we stayed 5 days.

Apparently our house came with a cook so we had him cook one meal, crab curry and prawns. It was very nice.

This man made each of my kids their own candle animal. He is an amazing artist.

I tried to post this 2 days ago but we were having internet issues.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Vacation Time

Tomorrow is our 15th anniversary and we will be celebrating by taking the kids on a trip to Mozambique and Swaziland. We will spend 10 days away seeing some sights and also relaxing on a beach for 5 days. Faith has been counting down the days for the last 44 days and just now came and said that she can't sleep :) We are all looking forward to some down time and I am thankful that God has provided us with the amazing opportunity (our friend helped us get a really good deal).

We have to leave a day early so we can try to get our visas in order so please pray with us that all will work out and there will be no complications or delays. Prayers for our safety as well would be greatly appreciated and I hope to have some nice pictures to post upon our return. We will be missing an adoption and possible child reunification while we are away as well as a chance to get to know some short term volunteers who just arrived, so please pray also for Beautiful Gate while we are away as it is a very busy place!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

My rambling thoughts

It is a cool, rainy Saturday here in Lesotho. After a winter of mostly sunny days, it is a great relief to have a cloudy rainy day. You see, August is WINDY season and the winter sun has dried out the land and grass so that when the wind blows, the top soil, dry grass and litter go flying through the air. I took the kids to the river yesterday for a little play time and we all had to cover our nose, mouth and sometimes eyes to walk there. Sometimes the dirt in the air is so thick that we cannot even see across campus and the sky looks cloudy even though we know there are no clouds. It is amazing to see and hard on those of us with allergies, but with the wind comes warmth and occasional rain.

The past month has been a time of many children coming and going. We have had 6 children who have been adopted and 2 who have been reunified and we have had about 5 newborn babies admitted. With the 6 children who were adopted, one family had waited 8 years for their set of siblings and the other families waited 6 years!! Wow, what a long wait for these families and yet they persevered and waited for their children. What blessed my heart is that every single one of them, after meeting their child, said it was worth the wait as the child/children were a perfect fit. It is amazing that God can orchestrate such perfect matches.

When I returned from furlough, our youngest child was 3 months old and we had very few newborn babies brought in for the 5 months after and now our houses are full of newborn baby cries again. One house is so full of little babies that they no longer have room for more. All their older children have been adopted or reunited so it is a really young house and a lot of work for the house mothers. Yet, when I go in there to visit, the house mothers are smiling and singing and playing peek-a-boo with their little children.

Hearing the cries of the newborn babies is a bittersweet sound. On one hand, I am extremely thankful that the babies have been brought to a safe place and have the hope of adoption. However, the fact that they have been abandoned, thrown away as trash or have been the victims of attempted murder, breaks my heart. I look forward to a day when there will be no more abandonment even if that means I will be without a job! I am also praying for the adoption process and that there would be a breakthrough that would quicken the waiting time for families who are trying to fill the call in their lives to love on the precious children not only here at BG, but around the world.