Hey Bloggers!!!! So, today was day three at El Manantial and as always we were greeted with hugs, besos and the sound of laughter. One day we paint and the next we help around the classrooms, keeping this pattern everyday. Being with the children drains every ounce of energy you have and takes ALL of your attention ( but so does painting) so, whatever you put your most effort towards that day you will ALWAYS end the day craving sleep the most or Red Bull (whichever you prefer). Today, i was with the children and my beloved teacher Magaly, we started the morning with changing all of our sweet babies into their swimsuits for their pool day. If you think keeping track of all of those babies is hard, I’d advise you to not try to change them all into different clothes. All waiting in line they started chanting “LA PICSINA, LA PICSINA, LA PICSINA!!!!” The excitement in their eyes for a few small kiddy pools was absolutely precious to say the least. For most of the day they splashed around in water that felt similar to an iceberg, but that definitely didn’t stop them from having the time of their lives. Most days they have an endless amount of energy but today they were WIPED OUT. The day went on as normal with games and activities but today we made playdough (which we could’ve picked something cleaner to make) but it was still crazy fun. Once they were all asleep, the project team ran out of paint which for them means scrubbing dirty walls with brooms and inevitably making it worse but even when the children are all asleep you are still putting all of your effort towards something. For example, scrubbing, rinsing, drying, and organizing dishes for 200+ children that never seem to end. Keep in mind, when they are up and around there is no stopping, I don’t think iv’e ever had so many kids in my arms at once as I did today (and everyday). We finished the day with singing songs on the bus and stopping for ice cream that was to die for and we finally got our pizza that we’ve been chanting for every single day since we got here. So, needless to say it was yet another day of being filled with love.
El Quince de Septiembre:
So it was day three at Quince de Septiembre and at first entrance we were all greeted with the brightest of smiles and warmest of embraces. Since today was my day to play with the kids, I was so excited to see familiar faces from day one. My class got to make cornbread which meant lots of time to cook aka lots of time for play. The hyper children seemed to never run out of energy as it seemed I was constantly running to catch them. (Piece of advice: If you lift and spin one child… you lift and spin them all) After spinning and chasing and jumping and smiling, it was time for some lunch. Lunch today consisted of a traditional Costa Rican soup with corn, squash, rice, carrots, and beef. A mess for the children but tasty for all. Once the bowls were emptied, all the little ones hit the hay and I have to admit after all the constant movement I was a bit jealous. But the day’s work and fun was far from over… Next up came craft time which meant we had to make playdoh from scratch. Sounds like an exciting and innovative plan at first until 3 buckets had too much conditioner and became goopy and resembled something more like mayonaisse. However, our trusty leader of the center Diana came to the rescue with a bag of flour and the playdoh was ready to go. While the itty bitties indulged in the doughy craft, the older kiddos took to the gym. Kickball tournaments are a specialty at Quince. It is so great to participate and witness the spirit of these children.. All are such great sports and so encouraging to one another. The kids weren’t the only ones getting competitive though, as next up was the teacher vs. volunteer/ Costa Rica vs. USA game. The final results are still to come as we haven’t quite finished (so root for team USA!!!). Overall, the day was a blast. I love how inclusive and loving this center is and everyone in it. As an English speaking, seventeen year old volunteer I never could have guessed the abundance of love I would see and feel. Love is truly not bound by a language barrier. Can’t wait to see what our last day and holds and keep us in your prayers!! Los amo!
Today was the pinnacle of joy at Finca. The day was full of soccer, dancing, an incredible water fight, and overall and indescribable amount of love. That’s something I’ve noticed about these kids. That they are pros at loving. They know how to show affection with their hellos, they know how to share and have community with other kids, and they know how to make you feel wanted with their goodbyes. Jesus was a huge fan of these little pro lovers, he would take as much time as he could to play and spend time with them. He even said that we should “become like children”. Jesus knew that children were among the best at loving, and I think this has been made evident to everyone of us through the students at these centers. So when my little boy Brian gave away his water balloon to a crying younger boy, the same water balloon he spent twenty minutes waiting for me to fill up, I realized something. Regardless of their situations at home and in their community, they have not yet been corrupted by greed, dishonestly, addiction, or overall impurity that can often come with more time spent in this world. These kid’s pure hearts allow them to love furiously and although we are here to show them about Jesus’ love, I think I could learn some lessons from them.