Tonight after taking the Gomez family grocery shopping (courtesy of the NE IA Peace & Justice Center - see link above), I had the pleasure of joining them for dinner around their "new" dining room table. Before today, they were using a card table which I had loaned them temporarily, and which only seated four people at a time. Today, thanks to Mary Kay (from UUSBHC - see link above), the family now has a table that can seat 10 people... the family of currently 6 people, plus a few guests!
Now, I apologize to anyone who has given items and hasn't received personal acknowledgement - there has been so much support that there's no way I can keep track of it all (Donna, Roger, and Cindy, to name a few), and the family is so incredibly appreciative of everything that they're received. Their house is almost completely furnished (we could still use a couple more beds and dressers). However, I hope you'll all understand that this table is special.
With the addition of a table at which the entire family can sit together and have a meal, the Gomez house transformed into a home. Rubi (13) sat on one end of the table, showing English alphabet flash cards to Marlene (18), who sat at the other end of the table with Alexis (7 months). Marlene can't go to school during the day like Rubi does, but she gets to learn some English in the evenings by helping with homework. Jimy (18) and Armando (17) sat next to me. Esperanza (mom) worked busily to prepare plates and bring them out to us. It was a welcoming, homey feeling.
Thank you all for your help in making the Gomez family feel at home. This new space is, for them, only the beginning of an exciting and wonderful adventure. In spite of being separated from dad and younger brother, who are still in Guatemala, they are happy, gracious, and grateful - a warm addition to any home, especially their own.