Saturday, August 20, 2011

Brent and JJ singing their ABCs

This video is from a play day in Zachery House. The boys names are Brent (yellow shirt) and JJ (orange shirt) and are both in kindergarten! These two were inseparable! (Notice how they are holding hands through it.)They loved how I can take videos on my camera so they loved for me to record them singing and then they would watch it! Laughing at themselves too! Sadly though, these two peas in a pod are separated. Brent left with a foster mom in August while JJ had surgery on his foot. He wasn't even able to say goodbye to his other half. :( I guess this is the hard part about a foster home. You love to see the kids interacting together but when they become separated because one leaves to be adopted, the other has to stay behind.) Keep JJ in your pr*yers! He is such a lovable boy and deserves a family too. :)

By the way, I am still planning to keep up with this blog. I have so many other stories, videos, and pictures to tell that I can't quit now! I can still blog from my little home of Beaverton, Oregon. And besides....I'm going to be using it more often since I want to keep traveling back to SFCV! I can't keep away from my kids...and you never know what G*d had in mind for my future. :)

It's hard to say goodbye to primary. :(

Hello all!
Sorry I never posted a blog about me leaving China. I was so caught up in leaving that I didn't have time to write out all that was happening. So now, at 1:50am (got to love jet lag), I will tell you all about my last day at SFCV.
So I decided I wanted one last primary class before I left at noon on Wednesday. I wanted it to be a fun day!! I told the kids it was a party! I prepped for Bingo and was ready to play Teacher vs. Students with them. It turned out to be a very fun class! We were all laughing and I was just goofing around with them soaking up the moment. When it was time to go, I usually always tell them: " Have a great day! See you tomorrow!" But this time I couldn't. Trying not to cry, I told them I was leaving today and that I had such an amazing time teaching English with them.
Then, Teacher Wang told the kids to give me something. All of the kids had made me necklaces and drawn pictures. Each picture was so unique but mostly all of them wrote they loved me. Now, this is when I broke down crying. Shelby held my hand the whole time and the kids then left for lunch. I kept crying and crying, looking at each picture they drew for me. After class, I was a complete mess. I kept crying that I barely even said goodbye to a lot of the kids. I made sure to say goodbye to Wendy and Stacey but it was still hard for me to even do that.
I never expected having such a hard time leaving these kids. Throughout the week, I knew it was almost time for me to leave. But knowing I was probably going to come back next summer, really helped me cope with leaving....until it came to Wednesday and I was actually...leaving.
These kids helped me realize how much I love to teach. Yes they can be dysfunctional, yes they can not pay attention during reading time, and yes, they can get so loud I have to be angry but they are my kids and I love them for that!
My primary kids:
 Shelby: Whenever i ask her to say a word, she always adds no before it. "No, wake up." :)
 Joseph: Whenever I ask him to spell a word, he freaks out but is able to spell it perfectly. :0
 Blossom: She didn't know one word of English when she moved to SFCV, slowly but surely, she is picking it up. :)
 Jerak: He can't stay in his seat for more than 2 seconds but loves to say a question is "Too easy!"
 Hayden: At first she would just draw in my class but now she is actually wanting to learn English! :)
 Seth: He is the best speller in the world!
 Elizabeth: This girl can be so competitive in games that she will start crying if she is not winning. Love her! :)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Popsicles, Slap Jack, bananagrams, and silly boys!

So here is what happened to me today:
9:10-Woke up! :)
10:00-Had a little ch*rch service with fellow interns
11:00-Lunch! :)
11:30-Stacey came up to me and asked if I wanted to go with her and Wendy outside of the compound. We went into a couple of stores and then Stacey bought us popsicles! It was a nice outing with my jie jies :)
12:00-Played Bananagrams with the interns
2:30-Visited House of Love and played cards with Grady! Whenever I play cards with him and other interns, there are always other kids wanting to come play and just be in the room. I guess that's what you get for living in a house full of kids. They are everywhere! :) haha I love it! We played cards and took silly pictures.
4:00-After I left House of Love, Philip (who is in the house next door) called out my name: "Good teacher Melissa, come to my house." So I went into his house and of course, did more videos with him and Jerak! Those boys are peas in a pod. They are very close and love acting silly with each other. It was so sweet watching them watch their movies. Philip would put his arm around Jerak during it. A moment I will never forget!
5:00-more banana grams. ( We are obsessed with this game over here!)
6:30-It is tradition to go out to dinner when it is an intern's last night. So we went across the street for Ruth's last dinner here.

And now i am blogging what happened today! :)

Thanks G for a lovely Sunday!

If I only had sisters to hangout with.

On Saturday, I popped into House of Peace to say hi to Wendy, Stacey, and Shelby. Stacey just woke up from her nap as I walked in. She gave me one of the scarves she made! Wendy and Stacey have been making scarves and selling them in the store for the last couple of weeks. Wendy gave me one of her scarves too! She said that she wanted to give it to me as a way of remembering her. How am I ever going to forget that girl!! :)

Back to the afternoon, Stacey and I ended up talking for a while about me leaving. (A lot of the kids know that I'm leaving soon :( ) I will never forget what she said though. I told her that I would never forget her and that i would come back to visit. Stacey though said "Many people say they will come back to visit but they never do. You will probably get too busy to email me back." This broke my heart! I will never forget my sisters! I pr*y I can keep this friendship with them even when I am in the States!

Anyways, we ended up watching this Japanese cartoon with Wendy, Stacey, and even Elizabeth came in to watch it too. It was all in Japanese so I had no idea what was going on! There were Chinese subtitles for the girls to read and once in a while, Wendy would explain to me what was going on in the cartoon. It was quite interesting and fun to watch just to try and figure out the story myself! hehe

It was such a fun time hanging out with my sisters. I seriously sat on Stacey's bed from 2:30-5:00pm just talking about random things and watching the movie. I loved it. I loved it. I love it.

Even though these are not my sisters by blood, they will always be my sisters!

Thanks G for an awesome afternoon with my sisters.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Happy Birthday Seth and Elizabeth!

On Friday, we not only celebrated one birthday but TWO birthdays! Seth was not feeling well on his actual birthday (Thursday) so we celebrated it on Friday with Elizabeth.
Now since I am an intern here, it is my duty to figure out some type of birthday food for the kids. I baked a cake for Jerak's birthday and barely any of the kids ate the cake.:( What can I say? I guess I'm not that good of a cook. :)

As it came closer to celebrating Elizabeth's and Seth's birthday, I started to worry about what to make them. Luckily, a team left a big gallon of pudding. Bethany (ESL intern) and I decided we would do pudding cups with pieces of Oreo cookies on it.

So we quickly prepped the pudding cups and took them into the school house. We were also able to put candles in them because Mama Jewel had candle stands! (Thanks Mama Jewel) We then lit the candles and headed into their classroom! We sang Happy Birthday in English and Chinese to our 2 kids! They had such big smiles on their faces. It's always fun to celebrate birthdays here because it recognizes each individual and how special they are. Anyways, we served them the pudding cups and guess what...THEY LOVED IT! They even wanted to have seconds!! How cool is that?

I was so thankful G helped me and Bethany think of a fantastic way in celebrating Elizabeth and Seth's birthday. Seth even thanked me! He is so sweet!

Photo credit goes to Bethany! Thanks Bethany girl for taking pictures!

An unexpected afternoon

When Kindergarten class ends at 3:30pm, I always have a decision to make: Which of the 5 houses will I go visit? For me, this is always a hard decision. I mean you have 5 houses full of great kids, you really can't go wrong with which house you choose. But for me, this is always a difficult choice to decide.

So last Thursday afternoon, I decided to go into Zachery House for a LITTLE while. Just pop in, hold Ethan for a little while, say hi to Bill and then go to House of Peace when school gets out. As I walked into the house, I decided to go into Philip's room to just say hi. Philip is 12 years old and has a medical condition dealing with his spine. He stays in bed most of the days because he also has some type of sore which does not allow him to attend school. (I am not fully educated on what is going on with him but this is what I remember about him :)

Philip is a funny animated boy. For the first couple weeks I was here, I always kept hearing about a boy named Philip but I had no idea who he was. Since I have been here, i have seen him a couple of times. Whenever he sees me though, he always calls me "Bad teacher." (he is just teasing me) :) He knows I teach here because Jerak (primary student), who is also in his house. told him.

Back to the story, I just popped by to say hi to him. He was looking through some type of ocean magazine so I decided to look at the pictures with him. He kept showing me picture after picture. (Oh I forgot to mention to you all, He knows English so it was great talking with him because it helped him use more of his English!! :))

We kept looking at the sea creature pictures but then he noticed my camera. Now this is when the fun of the afternoon actually happened. We took so many videos!! He would take videos of me talking and I would take videos of him talking! We would interview each other asking how we are, how old we are, who are our friends etc. It was such a blast because then we would watch the videos and laugh at how ridiculous we looked.

Jerak came into the room for the last half hour and so we made even more funny videos. Technically it was him and Philip and I was just a person in the background. :) Philip would hold the camera and Jerak would just made these weird faces and did these ridiculously silly things.

As I left the house, I quickly glanced at the clock. It was almost 5pm! (5pm is when we have to be out of the houses) I had spent over an hour hanging out with Philip and Jerak. I totally did not expect doing that!! I guess it is true, time flies when you are having fun.

I think my favorite part about the afternoon was that it was totally unexpected!! I thought I was just going to say a quick hello to Philip and then go into another house. But, G had different plans!

Thanks G for letting me have an awesome afternoon with Philip and Jerak! Thank you also that Philip is matched with an awesome family! Please help Jerak gain a family. But first of all, help both of these boys realize you are the best Father they can have. :)


Since it has been very hot this summer, we have had quite a number of water fights. It's especially great when teams do it because it is a great way to interact with the kids...(."get them soaking wet" interaction.:)) It is such a blast and I have enjoyed each water fight we have had here!
Anyways, here are some pictures from it. Photo credit goes to Miss Sara! She is an amazing photographer! :)
Photo descriptions :)
1. Elizabeth and I
2. Grayson boy!! He was so cute during the water fight!
3. Luke is ready for the water fight!
4. Be afraid of your English teacher, Jerak! She will squirt lots of water down your shirt!
5. Nice try Mr. Jerak but you could not get me from that far off.
6. Oh great, you got me!
7. Josiah with the water balloons
8. Beware of Joseph! He would get you all soaking wet but then once you got him, he would get really mad...oh silly boy :)
9. Blossom soaking wet, Joseph got her. :)
10. Joy took my gun. I was not very happy!
11. Henry playing with the water.