Friday, July 8, 2011

Final message of the day ... -Emily

Volunteers are not paid not because they are worthless but because they are priceless. – Unknown

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Message of the Day -Emily

If you can make a commitment to try every day to make someone happy maybe eventually all the ugliness in the world will go away.

Journal by: Terri

Today was a great day! Although all the volunteers are exhausted we are still enjoying our time at the hospital.

This morning we took the children outside.

Andrea, Vali, ‘Yanuts’ and a new boy named Marion had to stay inside. Outside we sang songs (Alina loves Old MacDonald Had a Farm), played on the slide (Marius thought sliding was ‘the cat’s meow’), played on the swings (Miastra and Ion love the swings) and lazed on the blanket (Gabi, Ana Maria x 2, and Marius specifically). The kiddos ate snacks and just enjoyed the sunny day. Meal times seem to be the most chaotic times of all. Children are screaming, squealing, and guzzling bottles. J

The volunteers ate a quick lunch and took off on a whirlwind shopping trip. First stop – a quaint little boutique where Emily found a dress and Jane found a ring. Then off to the fabric store to buy fabric for crib sheets. We found some precious child-like cotton – they are going to be fabulous!

We rushed back to the hospital and even had time for an ice cream before reporting for duty! The afternoon was more of the same – Jane had an interesting game of ball with Marius. Then some volunteers and some children went outside – the new tent is especially nice in the afternoon when there is no natural shade.

After getting the kiddos back upstairs the volunteers and Michaela went on a mad rush to find a tailor to make the crib sheets. We saw parts of Barlad that may have been better left unseen. J After our unsuccessful attempts at finding a tailor we made a fabulous recovery at Laterex! (sp?) We bought small pillows for the children and a cool inside seesaw! We also found Coke Light for Terri, Mountain Dew for Emily, and chips for Jane. J

The night ended with a dinner of chicken schnitzel and French fries – a few moments of internet connection – and the beginnings of packing.

Tomorrow will bring a day of sad goodbyes but also the anticipation of our continuing journeys.

La revedere Romania. Thank you for welcoming us with open arms!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Message of the Day (Jane)

“A hug a day keeps the cardiologist away.” Dr David Hamilton.

Health research says that kindness can reduce your risk of heart disease. I find it interesting that so many kids here have heart problems. I believe our kindness is doing more than we think it is.

Journal by: Emily

Our day started out as usual, eating breakfast and chatting downstairs in the hotel. We then made our journey to the hospital. The morning passed as usual. My mom stayed inside with Ana Maria and Vali; the rest of us go outside to play. Miastra enjoyed the swings while most of the other children enjoyed spending some time in the shade on a blanket. Except Alina and Ion of course, who had to run around like crazy little maniacs. The kids enjoyed yoghurt and animal crackers before we made the journey up the 3 flights of stairs.

When we returned everyone went to play with their usual toys. Not long after we returned, an aide brought in a screaming and crying little girl dressed in a pink onesie with feet. I scooped her up and cooed in her ear that everything would be alright. She clutched me closer and cried “mama”. Soon a nurse came to give her an IV. We went downstairs for lunch. Yummy pizza! Dan later found out the little girl’s name is Andrea.

After lunch Jane, my mom and I decided to hang out on the balcony until break was over. After break we found out our sweet Nadia left. Other than that our day continued as usual. After work my mom and I went to the gas station for internet again. We ate a delicious dinner of salami, cheese and lettuce sandwiches there. Yum!

Today was a pretty good day. Can’t wait until tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Message of the Day - Terri

Our purpose in life isn’t to arrive at a destination where we find inspiration, just as the purpose of dancing isn’t to end up at a particular spot on the floor. The purpose of dancing – and of life – is to enjoy every moment and every step, regardless of where we are when the music ends. – Wayne W Dyer

Journal by: Jane

Today we set out tired, but eager to see our kids, as usual.

Everyone except Ali, Ana Maria, Carmen and Jane went outside to play until lunch, taking full advantage of the perfect weather.

The tent finally went up, and part of the lawn was mown.

During lunch Terri, Emily, Jane and Dan went to the park where everyone except Jane had a siesta.

Apart from Elena leaving, it had been an uneventful day.

We went to the “creepy doll” restaurant, Alona, for dinner and took more photos. Terri, Dan and Jane had the special dinner of the evening with delicious soup, followed by pork and mash (served with pickles) and then cake.

On the way home Dan drove us around Barlad. We saw some lovely, huge houses (Terri is going to buy one for $1/2M) and drove by the cemetery, a placement centre and a high school. The views from the expensive houses were spectacular, although the roads were a little bumpy!

I find it hard to believe that tomorrow is Wednesday and our three weeks are almost over.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Message of the Day -Jane

This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community, and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.

– George Bernard Shaw

Journal by: Emily

After resting during the lovely weekend my teammates Jane and Terri and I were all preparing ourselves for the day that lay ahead. My mom, Terri, told us about how she thinks she might need to see a doctor because she might have pinkeye. Yikes! Once we arrived at the hospital, Michaela and my mom left soon to go to the doctor leaving Jane, Lorry and myself to take care of 13 wild kids and toddlers. Ion and Alina were their hyperactive selves; Carmen, Elena and Big Ana Maria were very calm all day as usual; Vali and Little Ana Maria were sweet and cuddly today also.

Jane and Lorry got permission from the nurses to take Ion, Alina and Miastra outside.

The other highschool volunteers and I stayed inside with the other kiddies.

Before lunch I walked into the bedroom to find an amazing surprise! Gabi was back! I scooped her up and held her close, whispering little things in her ear. If only my mom were there to see this sweetheart again. Hopefully she will see her tomorrow.

Also before lunch, Paula left for a foster home. Surprisingly she was very excited to go. J

After our delicious lunch of soup and ham and cheese sandwiches, Jane and I enjoyed some time outside in the beautiful weather.

When break was over we returned to the hospital to play with the children once again. We played many games, helped Alina and Ion learn to do flips and fed the kids bottles.

Jane and Baby Ana Maria sure had some fun during bottle time! ;)

When work was over and we returned to the hotel to rest then eat a delicious dinner o chicken, broccoli, and rice with yummy ice cream for dessert.

After finishing dinner we made a quick trip to Lidl then returned to our rooms. I stayed in Jane’s room for a while to borrow some internet and chat with friends before going back into my room.

All in all, today went well and I am looking forward to tomorrow.

PS. Happy 4th of July America!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Message of the day- Emily

The same God who speaks to us in a still small voice also uses winks and nudges, each too good and important to miss. James Whitefield

Journal by: Terri

This morning started off with our usual breakfast chatter.

The realization that our team is going to be down by one half next week weighs heavily on my mind. When Dan arrives we sing Happy Birthday (only 9 days early) and present him with his birthday card. As we are waiting for the taxi to arrive it once again strikes me that next week no taxi will be needed.

We arrived at the clinic ready to work with the dear active children who arrived yesterday. Ion is a handful! He is in a fabulous mood today though. Soon after we arrive he discovers the bubbles in the drawer. The bubble blowing begins! Miastra loves to stare at one individual bubble until it pops and immediately demands another be blown. Marius giggles and claps the bubbles with his hands. Alena enjoys watching the bubbles from afar. Ion watches for a few seconds and then tries to pry the wand from your hand. All of the children grow tired of bubbles – except Miastra, who screams when she is taken away from the bubbles for a medical exam and continues to scream when she comes back until bubbles are blown again.

The morning continues with volunteers singing, drawing, taking field trips down the hallway, etc! Feeding time seems to be one of the most hectic times fo the day. Paula and Alena are the only 2 stickla (bottle) eaters who eat without assistance and Ion is the only sold food eater who eats without assistance.

After the children are placed in cribs or in the playroom the volunteers had a quick soup and pizza lunch. We then went back upstairs for a farewell celebration with the doctors, nurses and aides. Dan chose 2 delicious cakes and various other goodies from Berlin and the pastry shop upstairs. The manager of the hospital, Dr Magda, made a speech thanking the volunteers and asking us to understand that any mistakes were due to miscommunication and she is confident things will get better with time.

After the party Kerry, Krista, Lorry and Jennéa walked to a nearby gas station to use the internet. Emily, Jane and I took advantage of the break time by relaxing at the hospital.

The afternoon passed quickly as everyone kept busy trying to contain and amuse the children. The aides were busy cleaning in anticipation of being short handed over the weekend. We moved most of the children into the playroom so their bedrooms could be cleaned.

The afternoon snack came a little later than usual – feeding the children cereal with milk was somewhat of a challenge. J I think more milk was absorbed by clothing than actually swallowed!

The hectic afternoon left little time for our teammates to become emotional about their last day.

After showers we were together for our last dinner. The conversation was lively as always even though we were physically and emotionally tired. The Viennese chicken dish was delicious. We toasted one another and took our last pictures together. La revedere Kerry, Krista and Jennéa – you will be missed!

This weekend was a lazy one, filled with sleeping, a trip to the Penny Market and walks to the gas station/internet café. Hopefully we will all be prepared and well rested for the coming week!