Come with us as we return to South America this summer to volunteer at La Casa De Fe, a home for abandoned and special needs children in Shell, Ecuador.

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” ~Mathew 19:14

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The New Property (Luke)

Each morning while we were in Shell I woke up at 7am so I could get ready for the day and take the 20 minute walk to the new property.

At 8 we started work on all the things that needed to be done.

Usually that meant plastering or painting most of the day; but I also got to haul and sift dirt,

and even more dirt,

move huge piles of bricks by throwing them from person-to-person,

and help mix cement for projects that the "Maestros" (expert carpenters) were working on

From noon to 1:30 we were off for lunch. Some people went to town and get back just in time to start work. I brought a lunch, and finished in time to take a nap and still start early. Our days ended at 5pm when we packed up and rode home in the back of La Casa De De’s truck.

Here's a movie the first floor of the building (as of the begining of July)

This is a view from the kitchen on the second floor.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Boys Night!!! (Sara)

On the Friday before we left we had our third and final movie night with the kids. The boys had waited so patiently for their turn! When Luke, Erin and I walked to the orphanage we had barely caught sight of the building when we heard the shout, “¡Ya Viene!” “They’re Here!!” There was a group of kids posted like sentinels on the second floor and as by the time we made it inside the outer gate we were met with a stream of pajama clad, super excited kids. All the kids got in on the action even though they knew only the boys were coming.

We handed out tickets, met up with a couple of the other volunteers, and got our group together for the walk to our house. As we walked back the boys helped us cary some jugs of water and a bag of oranges that we were going to use that night. It was so funny to see the little guys (who ranged from 4-9 years old) trying to balance and cary the heavy jugs. Even little Gilmar was determined to help out like the big boys. As they walked/raced each other with the heavy bundles we tried to help them out, but they were determined that they not only would get there first, but that they would also carry the jugs the whole way……. However we ended up carrying a few jugs in the end. I just wish I had pictures!!

Once we got home we turned on the movie (VeggieTales Gideon). And then finished prepping for the activity. Here are some photos of the night.

In their theator seats for the movie

We had borrowed the projector from the orphanage so that it felt more like a movie theator

Ivan wanted to sit with "Mr. Luke"

L-R: Jefferson, Craig, Gilmar, and Carlos


All the boys working on their craft. Can you guess what it is???


There it is!

The boys each got to make a slingshot

Then we went up on our roof and Mr. Luke showed them how to fire the Slingshots (we used the orange seeds)

Gilmar caught on right away

At first we had them fire off the roof at the tin gate

Carlos and Luke

Gilmar and Joel

Then we decided to have them shoot at the storage room door because it was easier to see

Martin was very focused

Javier and Ivan had a great time

Carlos and Luke

When it was finally time to go home Luke helped Carlos ride Joel's bike while the rest of us walked

When we got to the orphanage all the other kids were in their rooms so we had the boys brush their teeth and hop in bed.


Thursday, July 8, 2010

We're home!! (Sara)

We are home safe!!! We made all of our connections and there were only a few minor delays. Our plane landed in Denver at 8:30pm on Tuesday night and after picking up our luggage (it all made it!), and stopping for dinner, we got home around 11pm.

We spent all of yesterday unpacking and setteling back into life here at home. It is good to be back home, to see our family and sleep in our own beds. Now if only we could figure out a way to be both here at home and in Ecuador at the same time.....We miss the kids so much!!

One of our projects over the next few days is to go through all of the photos we took, get them organized and blog more stories. For now, here are some photos from our Big Girl movie night.

~Movie Night #2~

We picked up the Big Girls from their house after diner on Thursday, made sure they all had their tickets, and then walked to our house.

The first thing we did was to pull out the supplies for the beaded crafts. The girls had fun making earrings, necklaces, and beaded bobbypins.

Erin also brought out some of her dance shoes and let the girls try them on.

They were all thrilled. They especially loved the point shoes.

Once they got started with the crafts we turned on the movie (Nim’s Island). We watched it in Spanish with English subtitles (for the Spanish-impaired Gringos.)

That went well for a while and kept everyone entertained, untill we brought out Chocolate pudding. Rosa had a little trouble getting it in her mouth....

Though she might have had some help with that...

It was a fun night to spend with the older girls and give them some more one-on-one time.


Monday, July 5, 2010

Movie Night!! (Sara)

As we finished out our last week in Shell we tried to fill every minute with memories for the kids. One way we did that was to take groups of kids over to our house to do fun activities.

Over the past week we had three movie nights at our house. We made tickets and picked up the pajama clad kids at 6:30. We did something different with each group, but the basic plan was to watch a movie, do crafts/activities, and have some kind of sugary snack

The little girls came first. We kind of had a princess theme with them. We made crowns...

Then they made coffee filter butterflies

Finally we watched our movie....

the whole gang