Sunday, May 3, 2009

Up Country Easter

As most of you know, I come from a large and treasured family. The beautiful home my grandparents made in Monterey and the family homes nearby have hosted a lifetime worth of holidays full of friends and family, inevitable group sings and some of my favorite, home cooked foods. Easter is traditionally held at my Aunt Carlie’s house, and there have been years when the egg count topped 200 due to the abundance of kidlets in their Easter best, lined up smallest to tallest awaiting their turn to take on the lawn.

In an attempt to stave off the homesickness that is inevitably worse around holidays, I headed to Nakuru to once again visit the boys at the Expanding Opportunity group home. I was joined by Jinna (the other Ambassadorial Scholar who ran the food distro at the Rally for the Disabled) and with a couple of soccer balls and some food coloring in tow, we hopped a matatu for the two hour trip.

A couple months back, a friend I know only through the blogosphere indicated he wanted help the boys by sending some support. Shortly thereafter, my cousin Madeline indicated that for her son David’s birthday, he had elected to collect money in lieu of gifts to support the boy’s home. So, Easter not only meant a fun visit with the boys, but the opportunity to deliver these incredibly generous donations.

It’s hard to imagine over a dozen boys ranging in age from 5 to 18 without any sporting goods or balls, but the intense love and devotion given to such things by the group means they rarely last very long! Still, I think their replenishment is a necessity, and we brought two (funded in part by Frank and David’s donations). The first was put into use immediately and by day 2 looked as if it had been at the house for years! It was amazing to see the boys switch effortlessly between soccer, volleyball, wall ball and general fancy footwork tricks.

On Easter Sunday, we broke out the food coloring and interrupted our marathon Scrabble sessions (one of the oldest boys, Sammy, is a true Scrabble genius. He scrabbled his second play in the second game and won every single game we played by a wide margin). The boys really enjoyed the egg dying, though at first they thought it was a strange activity indeed.

We postponed the egg hunt itself until Monday so everyone could participate – it was fun to see the group apply their keen eyes to the garden where we hid eggs and treats. It was a great weekend and since that time, I’ve received a full report of how the donated funds have been put to use. You wouldn’t believe how far $300+ dollars can be stretched! From helping outfit the new, full time social worker's office and filing system (in order to be compliant with local regulations – this is an amazing step for the home), to getting pajamas, clothes and underwear for the boys along with new (used) games, artwork for the walls, a complete paint job of the main dormitory and general storage solutions for laundry and personal belongings, the money has been put to great use. My unending thanks to my cousin, David (and his parents of course!), and Frank for their generosity and heart for these boys!


Allan Wills said...

Megan your photos are AWESOME! So well composed... keep up the good work


Frank said...

That is so cool! A big thumbs up to your cousin David. :) I agree with Allan your pics are awesome, i especially like the sequence of the 2 last pics in your post.

Montana Short's said...

Wow - the tradition of egg dying and huge hunts lives on, incidentally we have had upwards to 400 eggs at home! I recall one Easter where you and other adult cousins decorated eggs that could have ended in a museum...great job capturing these on camera!

Megan said...

Thanks Allan!

And thank you Frank - it was such a joy to share your generosity with the boys.

T&J - Hilarious - 200 seemed like such a huge number, can't believe we've doubled that! What can I say, I think egg dying is in our blood. I did teach some of the boy's Tim's famous "blowing" technique :)

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