What a blessing to receive five letters this week- and if things continue the way they usually do, there should be many more on the way soon!
First, we heard from Mishel in Peru.
Mishel is really good about answering my questions, but she doesn't always tell me which questions she's answering! So sometimes I get phrases like "no, I have not." :) But in this letter, Mishel said that she knows how to make a craft- she makes flowers from egg cartons! How fun! She also reports that she has seen pumpkins before, and asked if Halloween is celebrated in my country. And she said she is praying for Brandon's uncle Dennis every day. I saw Dennis and his lovely wife Anne yesterday for Easter- and Dennis looks great! And he was happy to hear that the kiddos write that they are praying for him. :)
Then we heard from Julian and Michel in Colombia!
Both of their letters were form letters about Christmas holidays. Julian said he likes to play and go to the river, and he got a big toy truck from the project, where they ate chicken and drank soda for Christmas! He reports that he has never seen a pumpkin before. He also said "I thank you for your precious letters! I love them greatly!
Michel's project had chicken stew and rice for Christmas, and she got a new bag and a ball for her gift. Her tutor Paola also said they took all the kids to a swimming pool, and they had a lot of fun! Michel said her mom likes to go fishing in the summertime, and she catches a fish called bocachico. She said she has seen pumpkins before, but they look different than my pumpkins. And for Christmas, they decorate Christmas trees and nativity scenes. Paola wrote "We close with a kiss and a hug."
Then we got letters from Victor and Mary in Kenya!
Mary opened her letter with "I greet you in the name of our provider, my sister. May the Lord our God continue blessing you abundantly." Mary reports she has finished her O levels and she is going to computer classes while she waits for the results. She also says it's "too hot" in Kenya.
She congratulated us on our wedding anniversary, and said that her favorite part of weddings is when the couple exchanges rings. "Weddings are for the couples who want to get married and make up a family and then have a certificate." She was glad to read about my grandparents- I sent a letter telling the kids about Mimi and Pappaw, after they gave my mom a copy of their super cute anniversary photos! She also said her family gets together at Christmas after not seeing each other for a long time, and they have food together.
Mary always says really sweet things about our friendship in her letters. "You are far away but your letters make me feel like you are too close to me." She asked that we pray for her family and her country.
As for Victor, he said "I want to take this opportunity to write this letter thanking and appreciating your love for me. I received the letters you sent to me and I also saw the pictures you took during your wedding day and am praying that God may bring love and peace to your family."
"I want to send my greetings to Brandon, he has been like a father to me and I hope one day I will meet even your cousins." I thought this was just impossibly sweet, and I hope it encourages Brandon to write to Victor someday.
Victor says that he wants to work extra hard in academics this year, and he asks that we all pray for him. He believes he will succeed in part because he received the gifts we sent through Shelley, including a backpack, some school supplies, and a Bible.
Victor seems to agree with Mary in that it's "too hot" in Kenya, and very dry. "I believe and hope soon that there will be rain, even if some farmers have not yet prepared their farms." He also shared Psalm 56:13 with us, and signed his letter "Your beloved son, Victor."
We have lots of outstanding first letters (including one that is coming up on five months waiting), two kids that haven't written in five and six months, plus expected letters from Peru and the rest of our Kenya kids, which usually arrive around the same time. I also know that pastor letters have been mailed out recently to a lot of the sponsors, so I am keeping my fingers crossed that we will have lots of fun mail this week- especially since the mailman never bothered to show up on Saturday!