Regardless of their situation in the foster home, my kids are orphans who have been through a lot of heartbreak losing both parents.
If I can make them smile, that’s worth something.
And I sure can make them smile!
Real life. Crumbs on the floor, child in pajamas jumping up and down with messy hair, stubborn Ukrainian asleep accidentally on the couch refusing to remove her dirty clothes or too small shoes.
Misha took this picture of Andrii cooking chicken legs in my kitchen.
This is what Henry did with a chicken leg.
These pictures are from our Ukrainian Friends Picnic on Saturday.
Vicktoryia’s son, who is three days older than Henry.
Misha took this picture.
Ali is on the left in the hat, he’s Vicktoriya’s husband and he’s from Azerbaijan. (I need to google more about that country. I can barely spell it. I know nothing about it, but he speaks fluent Russian/Ukrainian.)
The patriarch, and one of the kindest men I’ve ever met. He speaks only minimal English and he adores children. He is always smiling. Can’t help but to become totally endeared with him.
Mariana put her Orphan Face on for awhile at the picnic. Refusing to eat, speak, or move out of the blazing sun. She had to be carried under the shelter kicking and screaming. On this day she didn’t eat or drink until 7 pm, and then only a few bites of corn and a sip of water.
But look, there are some smiles peeking out!
I’m reminded again suddenly of one of my favorite quotes ever. “The Spiritual Work of Gratitude”
To be grateful for the good things that happen in our lives is easy, but to be grateful for all of our lives-the good as well as the bad, the moments of joy as well as the moments of sorrow, the successes as well as the failures, the rewards as well as the rejections-that requires hard spiritual work. Still, we are only truly grateful people when we can say thank you to all that has brought us to the present moment. As long as we keep dividing our lives between events and people we would like to remember and those we would rather forget, we cannot claim the fullness of our beings as a gift of God to be grateful for.
Let’s not be afraid to look at everything that has brought us to where we are now and trust that we will soon see in it the guiding hand of a loving God.