Today was our first full day at Dar el Awlad with the boys. It was a very exciting and full day! We introduced ourselves (well the newbies were introduced since all the kids already know Tim). Today was my turn teaching the children's message for Chapel and a lesson for VBS. I must admit that I was pretty nervous leading up today since I have never led worship or a children's message before. But as God has been present this whole trip it was evident He was in that room with us. Although the boys know English, it isn't their primary language so I had a helper translate everything to Arabic for easier understanding. It really was beautiful to see the kids worshipping our God in both English and Arabic.
After Chapel, study time and VBS the kids had free time. Many of them played soccer and dodgeball. I didn't participate in either of these but it was a pleasure to see Nathan playing with the children and them accepting him. Elijah wanted to play soccer with the big kids so badly!! Elijah has been great and I am glad that Nathan and I decided to bring him as a family. This trip just wouldn't be the same without him. The boys have really loved on him and have been quite affectionate. Often the boys will come up to Elijah and give him a hug and kiss then pat his head or pinch his little rosy cheeks. Elijah loves being outside and gets pretty upset when he has to come inside. He has been chasing all the cats that live on DeA, riding a little red scooter down hills and playing soccer with the smaller boys.
One of the best aspects of being in Lebanon is the food!! We have had the pleasure of eating fresh fruits such as watermelon, cantaloupe, cherries and plums. We have also had so many Lebanese dishes that I can't pronounce but are so delicious such as hummus and this eggplant dip that's pretty amazing. On our way back from Byblos I had the opportunity to try the best ice cream I have ever tasted. The texture was different than American ice cream and the flavors I had weren't creamy or dairy based. I tried lemon, mulberry and rose ice cream and each flavor was delicious!! I wish we could go for ice cream every day! After tonight's dinner of eggplant dip, pita, veggies, olive loaf and cantaloupe, we went to spend some time with the boys in their 'houses'. We enjoyed watching them play soccer video games, chase Elijah and teach us how to properly pronounce their names. There are many sounds in the Arabic language that my tongue isn't used to speaking and we had many laughs together as we tried learning. Tomorrow we pass out the shoes that Calvary collected and I can't wait to see the look on their faces as they receive their bags!