We have to choose joy and keep choosing it. –Henri JM Nouwen
I sometimes forget to find joy in my everyday. I must honestly admit that I do not do a very good job seeking it, I sometimes selfishly feel like it should just appear. It's easy for me to get caught up in the hum drum of my life- the dirty clothes, the excessive carrying of bags and backpacks, the hot sun, the long walks, showerless days, laundry, nighttime bugs, or public transport. See? Where is the joy in that?
In the month of May we have planted 21 gardens out of 29 finished gardens. When we began our garden projects in March I told Sean I would be ecstatic about 5, thinking I was "pushing it". Additionally, we have been told repeatedly that the gardens are doing wonderfully and July can't come fast enough for them to show them off once again to us.
The library project at the primary school is underway, with a fresh coat of paint and 3 murals almost completed. We have library club on Wednesday afternoons. Students run to library club now. Last Wednesday 53 children spent the afternoon painting their designs on the tables. No paint was spilled on uniforms. This week students will be building library benches. Next week 1,000+ age appropriate books will arrive.
Tuesday morning we visited the Neighborhood Care Point in Mapatsenvuku to give out handmade teddy bears from the Mother Bears Project to 25+ children under the age of 5. Yvonne, the teacher, has finally been able to break ground on a building after 4 years of working and waiting for a sponsor.
Tuesday afternoon, after a long delayed grant process, 20 hardworking, intelligent women received 100 crates and 35 bags of feed to grow their chicken co-operative business. Early in the week they were granted rights to land in order to establish a permanent place to farm. A process that usually takes years and usually much longer for women.
Our sisi was accepted into a university. It rained 2 days last week. Babe learned how to write a business plan and design a cash flow. We added two new recipes to our rotation of dinners.
I can't speak much to the bugs, public transport or laundry but there is so much joy to be found in my dirty clothes because they are covered in dirt and paint. Backpacks full of bears are worth the long walks for such sweet smiles. They say your hair is healthier if you don't wash it everyday and the hot sun is becoming less invasive as it becomes winter. I find joy in these moments, these places, these people, this life. It isn't hard to find it, I just need to remember to choose it.
I hope the pictures below bring you joy today and you find joy even in the hum drum days this week.