Sunday, February 28, 2016

-our hearts home. Ethiopia//2016. Sunday. the 14th. church with Biz & Fares. doro. roses & cupcakes.-

What a special day!! After getting ready for our full day ahead, we headed down for breakfast & waited for Yilkal to pick our crew up to head to church. We were about to experience something far from our norm. Most of you have heard us talk about Biz & Fares, their medical needs, their genetic condition, Epidermolysis Bullosa & the severity of it. Well, back in October, the boys along with their family went to church with the boys' aunt to a healing service. when we drove up to this church, it was bustling & bursting with praise, worship & very loud music. Music so loud, it sounded like the speakers had blown. My insides were literally shaking. And others were literally, physically shaking to the point of needing someone to catch their fall. You see, something I have learned about Ethiopia & its people...if they are believers of Christ, they believe with their whole being. They don't doubt or question whether or not He is good, faithful, has the power to heal..etc. So, back when the boys' family came seeking prayer & ultimately a miraculous healing from the Lord, the moment the pastor declared them as healed, they trusted & believed. Now,  don't get me wrong..I love their steadfast spirits, being able to trust on such a deep level, reliance on the Lord etc, but from my point of view & a nurse that happened to be staying at the guesthouse, physically, they have not been healed.  Do I have hope? Yes. But, I also believe the medications that the boys had been previously using, was a very good thing & definitely have made a difference in a few areas on the boys' fragile little bodies. Also, I do believe that healing has happened on a spiritual level. It was such a joy to see Mogas(the boys father) worshipping, praising Him, seeing these 2 precious boys sitting up front in the church, singing, praying & believing big. Their mother Buzi, was also there, much more reserved, sitting quietly in the back. Overall, the boys' family exudes much more joy, hope & perseverance. The smiles on their faces & lighter spirits was a joy to witness. In time, we hope that they are willing to accept the medications that they have access to...that in itself is an absolute miracle & blessing. We know God is great, & if He chooses to heal the boys, it will so clear & we will praise & give glory to Him!! Until then, we will continue praying, loving them & believing big things for them & their futures!! We were at church about 3 hours, although unable to understand much, it was an honor to be in the presence of the Lord with them!! Grant was seated up front & center, a tad nervous, but was fun to see him being brave in this new situation & embracing it all. Once church was over, the pastor wanted a picture of our crew, so we gathered together, a handful of pics were taken from others in the church & we were on our way in a very crowded van!! Yilkals van is a 11-12 passenger van, but we not so comfortably fit 20 of us in it:) It's so fun to experience life with them & sometimes it was just necessary to just sit back, take it all in, breathe in the Ethiopian air & thank God for stretching me to places that I never would've dared go if left to me. So, so very grateful. The 20 of us safely made it back to the guesthouse, doro wat was waiting for us & an afternoon of fellowship, pictures, sharing stories & laughing!! So fun to be going through my pictures, discovering about 300 selfies from some of my favorites!! A few hours came & went & it was time to take their family back to their homes...we drove with them, hugged, said our goodbyes(for now!) & went on a hunt for fresh Ethiopian roses & cupcakes!! Afterall, it was Valentines day!! We eventually found beautiful roses & delicious cupcakes, drove back to the guesthouse, ate dinner, devoured the yummy cupcakes lit up by my phone, as we had no power & packed for our adventure down south!!

                                       Donna, thank you for sending these clothes!! They were very happy:)

What a full, good, great, beautiful day with this family!!
xo Kristen

Friday, February 26, 2016

-our hearts home. Ethiopia//2016. saturday, Feb 13th. walk for doro. Jemo. fluoride. effoi. doro into dinner.-

As always, we woke to the same familiar noises, most delicious smells & a beautiful sunrise. I always enjoy walking out on the front porch in the morning, taking a deep breath, admiring the sun peeking over the hazy sky, that would soon be shining upon us!! It's always a bit chilly upon waking, but the heat hits around noon & I couldn't enjoy that more!! After another delicious breakfast, we headed out on a walk for doro(chicken)!! The plan was to make these doro into our Sunday night dinner!! Grant & Sierra had been talking about this for a few days & looked forward to this holiday tradition in Ethiopia...however, it was not a holiday, but the doro would be prepared for our guests arrival the next day after church:) You see, doro is usually only prepared & enjoyed on special holidays...Christmas, Easter etc. This was going to be a very special treat for the very special family that would be joining us on Sunday!

We intended on purchasing 2 chickens, each around 150-200 birr, but once the man saw our group with Tsige, he raised the prices & wouldn't budge. Tsige knew better & said she'd have Alemeyu( one of our guards at the guesthouse)come back later & purchase them! He had much better luck & by the time we were back from our morning at Jemo doing fluoride treatments & a lunch out at Effoi, the chickens were quietly laying in the back. Poor chickens..
                                    kids all lined up & ready or not, it was fluoride time!!

                                                    250 individual applications of fluoride & 250 toothbrushes were generously given! Thanks again Michelle!!

A total of 212 children showed up for their fluoride, toothbrushes & a snack of bread & bananas!! It was so fun to see all of their faces again...definitely missed a few that we normally time:)
                                          Excited kiddos!!

Lunch at one of our favorites...Effoi!! The fave pizza is the lucanda!! A bunch of meat piled on to this pizza...I stuck with the margherita:) 
Once lunch was finished, we headed back to the guesthouse, rested a bit & then it was time. Those little chickens had no idea what was about to happen..or maybe they did?! I'll spare you the details, video footage, graphic pics...let's just say, it's not for everyone. Not sure how I feel about Grant having been one of the butcherers...ick. 

                                                   they were pretty proud..
cleaning & plucking. Promise gave the kids a bit of a biology lesson;) Sunday we would be enjoying a most delicious meal of fresh doro wat!!
Once that was finished, we all just relaxed, kids played cards, walked to the suk for a treat & the day was done! 

Ethiopia is always full of adventures, some are very welcomed & others feel so far out of our comfort zones, but always, always thankful to be in this place.