Saturday, October 31, 2009

Lost in Translation ...


It has been almost one year since we arrived home with our two adopted sons (ages 8 & 3) from Ethiopia. (Coincidentally - we left for Ethiopia last year on November 27 and this year I will be travelling to Ethiopia on November 30 to work with Children's Hopechest on child sponsorship programs. We met our sons for the first time ever on December 1st last year and I will be arriving in Ethiopia on that exact same date, one year later!!) Both boys have made some incredible strides in language development in the last year, and we have had a lot of family laughter and fun with silly language interpretations.

Last Sunday, driving to church, we passed skunk road-kill and our car was momentarily enveloped in skunk stench. As the smell hit Jayden's nostrils, he screwed up his face and waved his fingers under his nose, pronouncing "Ewwwwww, stink! I smell Chipmunk!" After we gained control of the laughter, we got to explain the difference between chip"munk" and "skunk".

Another recent incident occured last night at dinner. We've noticed that our kids tend to over-react to innocent teasing at times. And although we address the teaser, we also address the "teasee" about their over-reaction by explaining that the guilty teaser was just "trying to get your goat". We go on to explain how "your goat was grazing happily in its little goat pen - and you just up and handed your goat to your sister and she got what she wanted. She was trying to get your goat - and you gave it to her!"

Last night, Jayden was the "teaser" and when Maea over-reacted to the teasing, he triumpantly yelled out "I got your COAT!" We then got to explain "goat" vs "coat". Some things are just lost in translation.

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Four weeks from now, I will be travelling to Ethiopia with Children's Hopechest, to work with 7 different orphanages to develop child sponsorship programs! If you are not familiar with child sponsorship, it partners one orphaned child with one family here, to support their basic needs with a monthly gift of $34. That monthly gift ensures that specific child receives food, clothing, medical care, education and christian discipleship. But possibly even more important, that one child is given HOPE as they get to know their sponsor family through letter writing and pictures, and they learn that they are loved and valued. We will also be coordinating future trips to Ethiopia for sponsor families so they can meet their sponsored child!

Jay and I will be sponsor coordinators for one of those orphanages - we will get to know these kids personally, as well as their individual situation and the community they live in. About a month after this first trip to Ethiopia, we will have individual sponsor packets (with a picture of each child and their personal information) and we will be looking to match each of these precious children with a sponsor here. Next year, Jay will be returning to Ethiopia, hopefully with some of those sponsor families!

There are a lot of items we are collecting for our Ethiopia trip in November - but in addition to the items we will be bringing, we need financial donations so we can meet immediate needs while we are in-country.

Did you know that $15 can feed a child in Ethiopia for a month?!?! And that $15 could mean the difference between a child surviving and being matched with a sponsor ... or not. Would you please consider donating (any amount is appreciated! ... $10, $15, $25, $100) to Hopechest for the Ethiopia trip in November, knowing 100% of the donation will be used to meet immediate needs during that trip. I, and the rest of the Hopechest team, will personally deliver food to a hungry, scared and lonely child in Ethiopia - and we will deliver it with a HUG and LOVE! Go to http://www.hopechest.org/, click on "Give" and then specify "Ethiopia November Trip" in the notes section.

If you have ever considered helping a child in need but hesitated because you wondered if the money was really being used to help children ... THIS is an opportunity to give and know every dollar is being used to directly help an orphan.

2 comments:

Dietrich & Amy Lusse said...

Love that pic of the kids!! Sure wish we lived closer& could hang out. :).
Praying as you prepare for your trip. What so the boys say about it? Have they asked to go with you...or are they relieved they aren't? :)
gotta try to get back tosleep now. :)
with love, Amy

Karen said...

Hi Amy - so great to hear from you. I think of you often!! Jayden (8) has asked a number of times "mom going to Ethiopia?". After about the 4th time he asked about it, he finally said "me go too?" I said "do you want to go?" and he emphatically said "no". He seemed a bit relieved and hasn't asked about it much since. I agree - I wish we lived close by!! with love - Karen