Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tommy turns 18 and some other happy news!

Hello Friends

It continues to be a very busy time. Everyone is working extra hours, the volunteers and some of the big kids are doing a sterling job keeping things running smoothly. We have very little time to do followups on emails or make phone calls and work on some bigger projects - but we continue to plod along trying to get through everything :-)

A special thank you to our friends who have done special fundraising in their communities to help TLC. We made it through yet another month end and we are so grateful.

The biggest news this week was that our Beloved Tommy celebrated his 18th Birthday on Sunday. A huge milestone for all of us as we look back and reflect on all the challenges and difficulties Tommy has faced and overcome! We are so blessed to be a part of his life and are so privileged to watch as he becomes the man of his destiny.

Vivienne, her husband Jo and their friends Ruby and Steve did a Potjiekos lunch for us. It was like therapy for everyone - the first bit of relaxed fun we have had in ages.

On Friday I got a great phonecall from the Virologist who sees 6 of our HIV positive children to congratulate us for how well the children are doing on their treatment. They are all undetectable! Which means the virus is so well under control that they cannot count the virus!
It is a great blessing and huge relief - especially since our nutrition has not been 100% given our money troubles. God is Good!

On top of that God has done an extra little miracle for my Mighty boy.
Many of you know that when Mighty came to TLC he was literally on death's door. He had been sent to us from an Hospice and we thought we were going to do terminal care for him.
But he responded so well to the treatment and was soon a delight and a blessing in so many ways and it wasn't too long before he became my 3rd adopted son.
The only health problem that continued to plague Mighty was continual leakage from his ears which had both eardrums perforated due to constant infections before he came to us.
The specialist had told me that there was no remedy for the perforations and that over time Mighty's hearing would deteriorate and he would likely become severely hard of hearing if not deaf over time.

For years now we have been cleaning his ears several times a day and rotating different eardrops to try keep control of the infections and then yesterday ...
the specialist doctor was so happy to inform me that despite all expectations the perforation on Mighty's right eardrum had closed up! What a tremendous blessing. Once again ... God is so Good!

Here is a photo of me and my Mighty boy.

It's spring and we need a few things :-)
If anyone has about R600 our little sand pit at the preschool needs to be refilled with the washed riversand and some salt added to keep it free of infectious bugs etc.

We could really use a sponsor for another pair of hands in the food production section :-) Our farm is all set to SPRING into action and we need an extra farm worker to help get things set up for optimal production. It will cost about R3500 for a month of this type of skill.

Also it is that time of year again where we need to find sponsors for the children 's school fees for the next year. If anyone wants specifically to continue sponsoring the child they are committed to, please just drop me a mail so I can put you down before I work out who doesn't have sponsors.

We Love you all

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hello again my friends

Hello Friends

As I'm sure most of you have realised, things have been ...
Actually I'm not sure there is a good word for how things have been!
basically ... the universe continues to spin, faster than we would like most of the time.

In the time since I last wrote here are some of the things that have happened:

After many years of searching we have found a Forever Family for our two little sibling boys (Age 2 and 5) who have been with us for most of their lives! We are so delighted, it is such a blessing and a gift. We have implemented a specially designed plan to help them bond and attach with their new daddy and all systems are a go to have them placed by mid-September :-)

Oh Happy Day!

Most of our time though has been spent helping keep the Nursery running smoothly. Our current volunteers are doing an extraordinary job keeping things together. They are amazing and I am so grateful to them! 
I am supposed to cover 2 hours between 7 and 9pm but most nights I find my own little brood full of needs and demands and I feel so bad when I can't do both things, but the volunteers have risen up and everyone who can, works an extra 2 hours to help cover that time so I can be with my family. I have no words to properly thank them for such extraordinary perserverence!

Our new policy of not filling all the beds is really taking an emotional toll though. Going into the nest where half the cots are empty is so miserable, it feels like death has come.
We continue to hope and pray for some answer to our struggles but everyday we are faced with more devastating news. We just found out that a long established, excellent, well supported and pretty famous children's home near us is closing down in December. They have already closed their baby section and that room is now storing their office furniture and odds and ends.
God save us from such a day!

It wouldn't be so bad if there was no need for them, BUT THERE IS A NEED! A terrible, overwhelming, urgent need for safe places for these babies to go, but more and more places are closing down and where does that leave the babies? AAARRGGHHHH! I feel so stressed with the desire to do more but the resources to do less and less!

As always I have to tell myself ... just do what you can with what you have!!!

And so let me change focus onto the good things :-)

Here are a few pictures of my Beloveds! 

Mighty, Jerome and Christian had to have their regular blood tests yesterday to make sure all is well and we don't need to change their treatment or anything. They were so brave and so I took a picture of them and promised I would tell everyone how amazing they were ... so here you go ...

My Brave Boys!

Here are 3 of my darlings cuddling on my bed :-) I am so blessed that for the most part they all get along really well!

Cushy cuddles

And finally, here are 3 of my boys creating a battle between the animals and the cars! Not too much space in the trailer house but they make it work :-)

Between the laundry, couch and mom's bed we WILL find a place to play!

Finally, I would like to reitterate my very grateful thanks to the young Event Students at Damelin for organising, coordinating and managing the excellent fundraising event at the Barnyard theatre for TLC.
They managed to raise R10 500 from the evening and we are so grateful!

Here is a photo of the 3 volunteers who won the lucky draw to attend it!
Hannah, Birgit and Doris having a chance to do something different :-)

I will do my level best to write again soon and update you on the other things going on here :-) We are working frenetically to fulfill the new government requirements for the new registration so that hopefully we can access some funding through them, but it involves a great deal of work and the development of many new policies, procedures and registers that take a whole lot of hours to devise.

We love you all

Sunday, August 7, 2011

"... the centre cannot hold ... "

Hello friends

I may have mentioned before that I am a bit of a poet at heart. Things are often clearer to me through poetry and so today because my heart is too full and my eyes are starting to leak a little too much I give you one that speaks to our troubles. If you're not into poetry just read the first stanza.  Below it you will find a picture diary of the last little while.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.

    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?


Last week my James turned 10, he and Matthew have birthdays just 6 days apart.
Who doesn't enjoy a Birthday Breakfast in Bed?

Later in the day James' Granny Helain treated us to a meal and we had a wonderful time. The waiters sang Happy Brithday to him and then danced Kylie Minogue's "Locomotion"!

James and Granny Helaine

Birthday Brothers

 Whilst our cash flow is slowly crippling our ability to function at least we still have our Daily Bread. We have been so blessed by the donations of food we have received lately. Without these we would've been looking at having to drop one of our meals.

Sparrows school delivered two bixes of mixed groceries

Rialto Foods donated pastas, flour, tinned white beans and chickpeas

A lot of them :-)

Mr Richard Church donated us an old tractor that we hope to be able to fix up

Everyone had to have a good look ... even Nebo the dog :-)

The plum tree outside my house reminding me that "to everything there is a season"

The beautiful buds of the promise of spring

Upstairs renovations being inspected by Miraculously Healed Tommy

Bedrooms being sectioned off by new dry walling

Finally yesterday...
Due to our dreadful volunteer shortage I was looking after my 8 "Tigers" and the 8 "Lions", we had just started heading toward the Barn for our monthly Sign Language class when Joanna phoned to say the car she had borrowed (becuase hers was stolen, found and now needs repairing) had broken down when she dropped her son Kay at a party nearby.
So off we dashed (me and the 16 ones I was looking after) in the taxi to rescue her.
Turns out she was stuck right next to the BMX track so while we organised a tow for the broken car, the kiddies were thrilled by the madmen on BMX's doing tricks off a huge mound of sand :-)

By the way this blog had its 18000th hit last week! You are all amazing! Thank you for all the love you send our way.

We love you all