We had a friend in town visiting this week, which is always just a fresh perspective. While this is foreign to them and I watch them adjust and explore, I find myself thinking over and over again: I live here. This is home. Sometimes that is amazing: beautiful kids and laughter and Bingo games to win laundry detergent. Sometimes its exotic and we enjoy fresh pineapple and avocado smoothies before we visit a waterfall. And sometimes it is poverty, and the kids play in our trash and stay at our house to avoid drunken fathers and we hear fighting in the street.
All of these are true, for better or for worse. But it is still home! So here are some pictures of the beautiful parts of it.
We bake bread on Thursdays with young moms. One of the little babes is 7 months, which is just enough to get around and out of reach. Yaminoo was recruited to babysit, which brings along her brother, Lay Tah Oo. And Pyo Pyo’s son, Pyint Soe, gets to play, too, since his mom bakes. My favorite is watching Yaminoo multitask as she reads an ABC book and keeps little Win Mo moving with her feet.
And then they decide they want to sing the baby to sleep–with blankets, in nearly 100 degree weather, with two ovens and stove top running. It’s official summertime, so many of our friends are heading back to Burma to visit family and friends! Here we were helping a family get to the border.
Bingo is a big thing. We recently expanded to “real” prizes, which include laundry detergent, toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, sponges, and noodles. We hope to help meet more practical needs in a fun way, and it draws in more adults. We are also finding that most kids over 6 will choose laundry detergent over candy, so it seems its meeting a known need. We visited a few waterfalls while John was here. And even during the driest part of the year, there is fun to be had!
Isn’t she just beautiful? And its so fun to have the littles grow up with us and not be afraid of white skin and beards! She loves to have Stephen throw her up in the air.And some days, we sit on the washer and watch the clothes wash. For the older kids, we talked about what each button means and how it all works and watch the countdown until it finishes. For the littles, they exclaim over and over, “Water coming!” and “Whoa! Fast!” Instead of Saturday morning cartoons, we have thirty minutes of technology exposure!And this–this will be a photo I cherish forever. This house has so many stories in it. So many smiles, so many shaved heads, so much tanaka powder, and so many friends