We posted our new students for admission on the gate on Friday and it felt so good. I breathed a huge sigh of relief. I'm thankful for my team here on the ground for working so hard. Without everyone's input and all hands-on-deck it wouldn't have been possible. We are getting ready for our first day of school over, doing our teacher in-service, and planning some fun first-week-of-school and orientation activities. We were thinking that when we choose "houses" for the new kids on Friday, we'll have a sorting hat!
Yesterday all the aunties and the kids deep cleaned the school. It was dusty and worn from summer vacation. The painter is here freshening up with some paint. The carpenters are making more desks. There are bird nests everywhere in this little bamboo school of ours. Tope joked today that we have bird production business going on the side :) We're ordering backpacks and books and school shoes. It's a really exciting time of year at Kopila. We are all happy and ready to bring it on.
Although this week was kind of a roller coast of emotions, I'm feeling happy today and I wouldn't have gotten here without all of YOU! This week on the first day of school, we'll be launching a new website, moving over to a new journal and I am just so excited because the time has finally come to graduate from this blog. But before we flick the big switch I want to thank you.
You check in on us, and help us spread our message and story on our Facebook page, and twitter, and instagram. It may sound silly but when even when you “like” our status, or write a comment, it really makes my day.
You donate, you fundraise, you organize campaigns and host dinners and run races, and make things to sell. You give up your birthdays. You tell all your friends about BlinkNow everywhere you go– so much so, that you can tell your friends are getting a little tired of hearing it :) I am so incredibly touched.
You little girls and boys who cheer us on, who sell lemonade, and make rainbow loom bracelets and do bake sales, and penny drives, mail us letters and follow along on Kopila buds! I show my kids and they hang your pictures and your letters up in their bedrooms. You make us smile.
I know a single mom with three kids who donates whenever she can and a waitress who gives us a portion of the tips she makes. There are family foundations who include us in their annual giving, book clubs, rotary clubs, youth groups, and girl scouts. You have entrusted us to choose the poorest of the poor, the neediest of the needy and change their lives and to make the world better. You have enabled me to mother 40+ children. Your charity, your prayers, your investment in my children, means the world to me and to all of us.
Sometimes I get so caught up in the work that I forget to tell you. I forget to tell you how you make every single little thing possible here. Honestly I feel a little spoiled sometimes. I’m the one who gets to tuck the kids into bed under their mosquito nets, and sign the checks in the checkbook that buys our students new school shoes, or sweaters, medicines, or medical surgeries, that taught 60 women how to read and write and sew and launch future careers this year. This week we paid a plumber who fixed our toilets when they got clogged and the milk man who delivers our milk. I paid the farmer for his rice and the woman selling bananas out of a basket. And then I sat at the table and watch my kids eat together. I get to soak up all your generosity and watch it move into action.
I've been watching the truck and tractor loads of bricks and stone and cement that keep coming in to build this new beautiful school of ours that will allow us to expand and grow and continue to spread our roots. I watch the piles of rocks dump out of the truck and dug into the ground for a strong foundation.
I get busy. I don’t always write back. I don’t always say yes to every request but I need you to know that you’re everything to me and to my kids, absolutely everything, and there’s not a night that I don’t lay my head on my pillow and think of you. I am thankful you're by our side no matter where you are in the world. Thanks for being on our team. Thanks for making our world better and helping me care for our little ones.
Nothing but gratitude today.