I'm so glad you found us! We love to share our story of what the Lord is doing in and through our ministry in Kenya. If you are a reader, please click the link on the right-hand side and "Follow Along!" And stop back by anytime! Karibu sana!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Jackie's Blog

If you have been around HCO for awhile, you will know Jackie. She is also the one, the "20 year old," who came and spoke at our benefit dinner in Houston last December. Yeah, she was "in the area" (as in Tennessee) for Christmas and just thought they would drive over for the dinner. I guess if you drive from Michigan it doesn't seem so far?????

Anyway, Auntie Jackie is back!! And she is doing a better job of keeping her blog updated than I am. So...if you are interested in more baby updates, house pictures, etc, here is.....

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Big Move

We did it! We officially moved the baby house to Nakuru, Kenya, about 80 miles from Nairobi. So, goodbye to our big, beautiful house in the Ngong Hills! 

A bittersweet day....a little sad to leave our first home of HOH, but looking forward to settling in in our new home in Nakuru and excited to see what the Lord has for us here.

Julie (w/BabyBoy), Hellen (w/Joseph), Kennedy (w/Eli), Joshua (w/Jeremiah), Daisy, Anne (w/Lizzy), Me (w/Hope), Irene (w/Kate & Julia)

Moving day was quite eventful, especially after a busy day the day before. We tried to organize the best we could so that the babies had what they needed in the house until the last minute, while also having what they would need the moment we reached the new house. I think we did pretty well! No major issues or baby breakdowns.

Our caravan out of Kibiko. TWO moving vans, followed by our babies and aunties in a Nappet Mission Tours van (Thanks, Tom!!), followed by Jackie, Julia, Daisy and I in the Prado.

True to Kenyan form, the move did encounter a few hitches, including the moving van being delayed by a police check and arriving at the baby house almost 3 HOURS after the rest of us....in the dark, in the rain. Try entertaining 8 babies after a long day of travel (when most of them are not even used to leaving the house!) in a new place with only a handful of toys to entertain them. They were troopers! And so were the staff girls. 

It was quite an undertaking, but we all survived and arrived safely at our new house. 

I will update soon with pics of our new place! We love it!  

Thanks for all your prayers for smooth transition!! 

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Making the Most of Our Last Days in Nairobi

We decided to take full advantage of the fun opportunities we had nearby while we lived in Nairobi.

On Saturday, the day before our movers came, we went on a field trip! With the help of our friends, Jackie and Sandra, we loaded all the babies and staff in the cars and headed for the Elephant Orphanage and Giraffe Center.

The staff girls had never been to see the elephants. I think they enjoyed it as much or more than the older babies!

After visiting the baby elephants, we went to the Giraffe Center, my favorite! Surprisingly, Jeremiah was not at all afraid. He loved the giraffes. Giraffes are Julia's favorite. She loves to feed them and laughs when the giraffe sticks its long, ugly, rough black tongue out and takes the little food pieces out of her hand.

We took time to have lunch at the Giraffe Center. Quite an experience. The babies did great, though! 

The older ones (Lizzy, Jeremiah, Julia and Kate) really loved the animals. Even Eli enjoyed watching them. 

Yes, I do believe, a good time was had by all!

Friday, June 11, 2010

A Busy Weekend Ahead

Things have been so very busy here the past few weeks. I have been back and forth from Nairobi to Nakuru more times than I can count. Julia and I have moved into our house in Nakuru and I have been trying to get the baby house prepared for the babies to come. The house is much smaller than our house in Ngong, but it will be MUCH better suited for a baby house. One floor, no stairs! Woo hoo!

We finally made HUGE progress with the baby house this week (SERIOUS cleaning needed to be done, electrical wiring, a few plumbing things, and wood floors re-done) so we are planning to move the babies there on Sunday. Whew! I'm already exhausted and we haven't even left yet. What an undertaking to move a house full of seven babies and three live-in staff, not to mention Julia & I. I don't know which is harder to prepare for - the move itself or the actual logistics of getting the babies there. Feeding 8 babies while traveling?!?!? Maybe I should have paid closer attention to Jon & Kate Plus 8 to get a few tips.

In order to take full advantage of the fun opportunities we have in Nairobi before we leave, we are going on a field trip (WITH ALL 8 BABIES) tomorrow. We are going to the Elephant Orphanage and the Giraffe Center!!! Yes, I know, I know. Should have planned ahead a little bit, Trena! Well, I have had great intentions to take the babies to these places many times over the past few months, but it has just never worked out. And now I know I would regret it forever if I don't do it before we leave. So rather than spending the day before we leave trying to get ultra-prepared, we are going to play! Yikes!!! What am I thinking???!?!?!

Saturday = Elephants & Giraffes
Sunday = MOVING DAY!!

Prayers welcome. :-)

(And by the way...Welcome back to HOH, Auntie Jackie!)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Little Joseph

Just a few new pictures of Joseph.  He is now one week old. 

Can you imagine anyone leaving this precious thing on the road?

It took him a few days to learn how to eat, but he is on track now and doing very well. We will be taking Joseph for his preliminary HIV test within the next week.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Moving Right Along

Just a quick update to say that I have officially moved to Nakuru, but the babies are still at our house in Ngong. We are still working on getting the baby house ready with all the repairs done before bringing them here. I hope to have them here around the middle of the month. Meanwhile, I am going back and forth, trying to get my place set up and things started here while traveling back to Ngong to check on things there. 

Since coming here on Saturday night, I have begun to unpack a bit and we have done lots of interviews, meetings and appointments. Everything from interviews for baby caretakers and cleaning staff to appointments with landlords, childrens officers, and fundis (handyman type workers).

I will be here one more day before going back to Nairobi/Ngong on Friday. Our special friend, Jackie, is coming back to see her babies and meet a few new ones! 

I have missed my babies these past few days, especially new baby Joseph. I can't wait to get back and see how he has grown! 

Thanks for all your prayers in this transition time. I am so excited to be here and can't wait to get the babies here, too! I am certain that the Lord has great things in store for us here! 
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