October 16, 2008


These two sisters were celebrating a birthday when we entered their classroom .

Have I mentioned I love kids?????
Today we went to an Internat (that is what they call the Orphanages) only this was more of a boarding school. The children were between the ages of 6-16. Most of them still have families of some kind. Some of them come from single parent homes, some from families with many children, and others from homes where parents have addiction problems. I asked if any of them are adopted and the director said, last year one child went to a foster home. She explained that many of the parents still have parental rights they just can't afford to take care of their children. When I asked if they get to see their families she said, "yes they can go home on Sundays if they want." Once again, we peered into the rooms that the children sleep in and there was absolutely nothing personal in the rooms. The picture above is one of about 8 sleeping rooms we saw. I am not going to say anymore about that. Except it is very sad to see. I mean look at these faces. They were so cute. We wandered into this classroom and they were having a birthday party for the twins in braids. I talked to the children in English while Olga translated and asked them if they could tell me their names in English. So one by one they eagerly raised their hands and said,
My name is Natasha
My name is Andre
My name is Julia
My name is Volva
My name is Nastia
Then I asked them to tell me how old they were and we went around the room again. They were so eager to stand a recite
I am six years old
I am seven years old
some of them would laugh or giggle afterward they spoke.
They loved it when we took a group picture and they could see themselves in the camera.
I had so much fun as usual I found myself wanting to ask, "can I come back and play tomorrow?"

4 messages from friends and family:

McEwens said...

Great time! Wow the rooms are so stark.... Thats great you have an interpreter is she LDS? Missionary???

dixiewhitehead said...

I'm happy that they have a nice place for a classroom, but being a school teacher, I can't believe the lack of resources and educational environmental stimuli that I thought I would see. I wonder how this classroom differs with a regular school classroom. I can see why you feel sad at times for the conditions in Ukraine.

Jane Anne said...

It is really hard to believe that families let their children go to these places. I can see why you feel so thrilled to be able to teach about strengthening the family. You're doing great!

Melinda said...

Olga is our translator, she is not LDS the missionaries met her in the English Classes that they teach. She speaks excellent English. She is meeting with the missionaries and being taught from Preach my Gospel. We absolutely adore her. She was definitely Heaven Sent. Yes, it is a blessing we found her for sure. We counldn't do this work without her. We have to visit so many organizations weekly and definitely need her help. Thanks for stopping by.

Saints in Ukraine (put music on pause)

My music

click on the photo to see the captions

Armenia Trip

Our last Zone Conference

Some of the faces we will miss

Our trip to Mariupol

March Zone Conference in Donetsk(click on photo to view a larger version)

Missionaries helping the International Relief Development unload a container from America

Health Fair click on the photo to see what is coming up

To listen to this talk you will need to put the music on pause first

Sometimes we forget what divine gifts we have been given. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, 2nd Counselor in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints


Look at the fun equipment we got to deliver to this internat for Special Needs children

Europe East Area District Meeting


OUR APARTMENT (this is not an average missionary apartment)




Click on photo to see more photos of the Open House at the Kalininsky blg