Roberto, Jose Luis, and Gabriel created a dino safari this afternoon in the grass of our front yard. I love the innocence on their faces. I love the normal-ness of seeing them create fascinating worlds with their imagination. I want to freeze this moment in time so they will never grow up… Peter Pan wishes for our boys.
Yet, grow up they will. And they will look back at their time in the House of Dreams with fondness. They will remember never being short of playmates. They will remember not having to worry about their next meal. They will know they are special and important.
This season, as we celebrate the Incarnation of our Lord, I am grateful that we can bring to life God incarnate as we care for these little ones. Those of you who give, pray, and volunteer can know that you are a part of something holy and truly good. Thank you for joining us as we make dreams come true at The House of Dreams.
With Joel squinting at the T.V and while doing homework, we took him to the opthomologist last week. Sure enough, Joel who is five years old needed glasses. Out of our 15 dreamers we now have 5 with glasses.
So far he is doing a great job taking care of them; cleaning the lenses by himself and always putting them in his case when he plays soccer.
In case your wondering about the spiked hairstyle, the day I took the picture the boys were getting ready to go bowling. They decided they wanted to go bowling with “cool” hair!
On the Projects Page we added a new Action Project. Check it out if you or someone you know would like to help keep our Dreamers seeing clearly. Thanks!
Every Friday, we take the Dreamers to the local bowling alley for some fun. We alternate, taking the boys go one week and the girls the next week.
This week it was the boys turn. And just like every other week we piled into a taxi and headed to the bowling alley. The conversation almost always starts off with a debate of who is going to win this time. From the youngest to the oldest, they all begin to prematurely proclaim their victory.
After five straight minutes of “No, I’m going to win!”, the conversation finally changed when I asked them if they liked going to the bowling alley. Roberto looked at me like I was crazy for even asking, before replying “I love it!”. He wasn’t finished “I love it so much, I want to live there! Could I live there?” he asked, grinning all the way through the question mark.
Roberto, showing his love for bowling.
We all had a good laugh. It’s great that our Dreamers are able to have a little bit of fun and not only be limited to the bare necessities of life.
In a house full of kids a playmate can always be found, games can be invented and reinvented for hours, and work becomes light when everyone pitches in to help. Mixed in with all the goodness we also find some things inevitably go overlooked. The one on one attention that might make a difference between a pass or fail grade is not often a luxury we cannot afford. Moments slip by when an ear to listen to what’s heavy on a child’s heart take a back seat when the laundry piles high and there are mouths to feed.
Looking at the mass of kids and considering meeting each one of their individual needs seems downright overwhelming.
But could I help just one? I think so.
Starting next year I want to implement a Big Brothers Big Sisters program at the House of Dreams. We have the privilege to lean upon the close relationship the orphanage has with the church. From that pool of believers I think seventeen people would be interested in being a part of this type of program.
This is the part where you come in. I am looking for advice for implementation. Were you ever a Big Brother or a Big Sister (Little Brother or Little Sister)? Have you ever run a mentoring program with children ages 10 and under? I would love to hear about your experiences. Even if you have never personally been involved in a program like this I am still in the formulation stages and would love some input.
I feel like pairing up the kids with qualified individuals in a well structured program could have a positive impact in the lives of the Dreamers.
Oh, and if you have any suggestions for a name for the program that would be great too.
Photo by: Melinda Gore
For the second year in a row The Rock Church of Louisiana did Christmas boxes for the Dreamers. The boxes started arriving last week. They await our annual wrapping day stashed secretly in the front room of our home.
We are so grateful to Rocky and Jodi Bezet and all the members of the congregation who helped to send all the boxes of fun stuff down. You are amazing!
The ladies at the post office get just as excited as we do when they see the boxes start coming.
My strong man made a few trips up and down the stairs at the post office. I kept the motor running double parked on the street.
The first load of 25... there are 37 in all coming!
These guys will have a very merry Christmas!
Most little boys go through a phase of fasination with dinsours. Our boys at the House of Dreams are now at that phase! They watch their favorite dinosour movies, and everyday they’re playing with their dinosaur figurines.
Jose Luis, playing with his dinosaurs.
Gabriel is the most fasinated by these prehistoric creatures of all the boys. He memorizes the names of the dinosaurs, and just about everyday he ask if he can have some real dinosaur bones!
Gabriel, proud of his dinosaur coloring page
I wonder what phase comes after dinosaurs?
Bernancio and Yamil, the first to fill their charts with stars!
You may remember that awhile back the dreamers were earning points as a behavior management plan. We now have changed the plan to earning stars. They earn stars for helping others and good behavior. The kids love getting their stars and placing them on the chart that has their picture on it. A full chart means a reward!
If you would like to know more about Bernancio and Yamil, click on their names to check out their profiles.
With a new director at the House of Dreams, there are a lot of changes taking place. One of the Dreamers’ favorites is the mandatory playtime being incorporated in their daily schedules. On Fridays their playtime is highlighted by a trip to the bowling alley.
The bowling alley has been generous enough to allow the Dreamers to bowl on Friday afternoon’s for free! So last Friday, we piled into taxi’s with all of the boys and headed to have some fun at the bowling alley. This week, it’s the girls turn.
Vladimir needed a little help.
Bernancio working on his follow-through.
Roberto getting the hang of it.
Consider supporting a Dreamer on a monthly basis!
If you were around in the 1980′s, then you should remember the “My Buddy” theme song. I mean, how could you not? It was short, silly, and catchy. Here’s how it went:
My Buddy, My Buddy. Where ever I go, he goes.
My Buddy, I’ll teach him everything that I know…
My Buddy and me like to climb up a tree.
My buddy and me, we’re the best friends that could be.
My Buddy, My Buddy, My Buddy and Meeee!”
Now, of course, this was not the best written jingle ever, but the message is a good one. It teaches children about friendship, how friends spend time doing things together, and how they learn from one another. If you were to spend an hour with the children at the House of Dreams you will immediately begin to identify the “buddies”. Here are just a few of them.
It’s fun to see how they pick up certain characteristics from one another. Other characteristics I’d wish they wouldn’t, but that’s the power of influence. The Dreamers keep each other entertained and it’s entertaining to watch, to say the least. It is great to know that although they live together like brothers and sisters, they still enjoy one another’s company.
While the Dreamers enjoy one another, they would also enjoy making new buddies from all around the world. You can sign up to become a Pen Pal, a sponsor, or come visit to gain a new buddy at the House of Dreams!
A week ago, we celebrated Christmas at the House of Dreams. The children had plenty of gifts to open thanks to Pastors Rocky & Jodi Bezet and The Rock Church for donating and sending the gifts for the House of Dreams.
The children were so blessed to have gifts of their own to open and toys of their own to play with.
We managed to take video of every single child opening their gifts, so without further ado, here’s the boys:
Again, we would like to thank Pastors Rocky & Jodi Bezet and The Rock Church, you may never know how truly merry you’ve made this Christmas for the House of Dreams!
Like the video? Interested in doing something to help the House of Dreams? Look into helping out with one of our Action Projects!