GongYi Home of Hope

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Mulberry Picking

As Springtime quietly yet unyielding melds into Summer the activities at the Home of Hope continue.

The children are preparing for their mid term tests for the final term of this year… some with great confidence.. some with major apprehension but regardless of their particular emotional state regarding their tests, everyone knows the days are changing… getting longer with the nights being shorter and daytime playing time lasting longer… the air is more sultry, being laced more and more with humidity that virtually disappears during the winter months.

The sounds around the Home of Hope are different now than they were a month ago.. One can hear lawn mowers starting up, various types of clippers and cutters working… chain saws roaring as trees are trimmed… and is always the case, there are more things for Ye Ye to teach the children as they develop and mature… an example would be the chain saw.Page1_1Until the start of this summer, none of the children were allowed to use it… but this year Ye Ye hasn’t hardly had his hands on it at all except for tuning and helping get it started from time to time… Little John (look back into some of the historical reports where Little John was truly little… not the “over six feet tall” young man he is today… ) has taken charge of the chainsaw and has really got the trees trimmed nicely.

In the pictures above you can see a lot of limbs and foliage has been cut. It was getting so thick one could hardly see the sky in the back yard… quite a change from when we took this place over fifteen years ago… not a tree on the place… and to the right Little John is starting the chain saw.

All the children went out a few days ago on one of their days off from school and did some Mulberry picking… my what fun and my what a mess…Page2_1Page2_Holly

Page2_JimJim and Holly, (round inserts – Jim to the left and Holly to the right – who both came to live at the Home of Hope in the first group of children way back in February 2000, took time off from their busy schedules (both are working in very rewarding occupations… Holly works in international trade and Jim works in hotel management while he is breaking into architectural design as his permanent carrier (and doing very well from what we are told).Page2_2Happy and Sissy (our two youngest children… we can’t quite call them babies any longer… ) are doing quite well! We are dealing with some major decisions with Happy that have to be decided on fairly soon.

She will not be welcomed into a normal school (even though she is a very normal child) because they say she will distract the other children. Where we are there are no special schools that are designed for someone like her and she is far too smart to put in the Special ED schools they have here which are basically for the slower children.

Our options seem to be to send her to a special school for children like her in ZhengZhou (which is very expensive and is NOT the way we want her raised) or for us to hire a teacher and basically home school her. The second option is the preferred way and if we go that direction our other children Happy’s age can take advantage of having a school on site here again like we did before. Our children at that time have done exceptionally well in school and we feel it is because of the solid foundation they received here their first couple of years in the Home of Hope school.

Please pray with us about the situation with Happy as the phrase that keeps going over and over in my mind is one I heard many years ago…. “a mind is a terrible thing to waste”….

We will make sure she receives the education she needs… we just need a lot of wisdom right now in navigating the political waters here with people who don’t seem to understand….

Blessings to you! We are so grateful for your support and prayers!