A Day In The Life Of The Homes | Kikuyu & Kitalale

A Day In The Life Of The Homes | Kikuyu & Kitalale

The smell of coffee and a warm mug between your hands, taking the dog for a walk in the crisp morning air, rushing out the door with your hands full and the kids trailing behind you…We all have familiar daily routines that we can relate to. Our homes in Kenya are no different than yours, although we’re fairly sure you don’t have 50 kids underfoot at one time!

Between waking up two houses of 50 kids in the early hours and orchestrating the movement of everyone to and from school, our days are full! In our Kikuyu & Kitalale homes, we are blessed to care for 100 beautiful and growing kids. This month, we’re inviting you to learn what a typical week is like for our kids, Aunties and Uncles. Although our homes are in different locations, their daily routines are very similar.    

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

Proverbs 22:6 ESV

Our days are filled with cooking, cleaning, ironing, mending, homework, games, devotions and more. It’s the kids who get us out of bed in the morning, and who fill the days with joy and laughter. They give life meaning and purpose.

Our beautiful Agnes, Josephine and Grace always smiling and giving us joy

Saturday Chores, Devotions and Play Time

Weekends in our homes are incredibly special. During these 48 hours, we get the opportunity to foster a meaningful family connection and set ourselves up for success for the coming week.

On Saturday’s, kids typically wake up between 6:30-7:00am to have breakfast and get ready for chore time. It is common for the older and younger kids to help the Aunties and Uncles with chores. This teaches them responsibility, accountability, teamwork and care for our living environment. The kids are then divided into four groups: kitchen, laundry, farming, grounds & gardening and work as a team to complete their chores.

Chore chart broken down by date and name

Depending on their age, ability and specific interests, some kids are assigned special chores. For example, in our Kikuyu home, Anthony, Elijah and Jacob typically get assigned tasks like feeding livestock, milking the cows or cleaning the pens since they love animals! The same is true for our kids in the Kitalale home where James and Moses are the ones in charge of this task.

James completing his chore on a Saturday morning

At around 10:00am, the kids regroup for a mid-morning break and snack. Before it’s time for lunch, many of the older kids get a headstart on school assignments or read a book. The younger kiddos play with each other, watch movies or spend quality time with the Aunties and Uncles. Mary is particularly helpful around Kikuyu and will always offer to help auntie Risper or uncle Sam with the chores they’re working on.

Grace enjoying one of our surprise activities.

Some weekends we plan special activities on Saturdays. During the the summertime we take the kids swimming to keep them active and beat off the summer heat. It’s their favourite activity, which you may remember from our mid-year break activity recap post. More recently, horses were brought to our beautiful Kikuyu home where our kids got the chance to try horseback riding and get exposed to this amazing opportunity. Their joy for the new experience was palpable.

On Sunday We Praise the Lord

On Sundays, kids wake up at 6:30am to get ready, have breakfast and leave for church at 7:20am to praise the Lord! Faith and spirituality are very important in our homes; they allow us to find deep meaning and purpose. Daily practice is our way of expressing love and devotion to ourselves and the Lord. Mercy in Kikuyu and Grace in Kitalele are always particularly excited to go to church and sing to our savior. We normally leave Sunday’s post-church activities flexible depending on the season and on the activities that are going on that weekend. It is the day for rest, after all!

After what usually is a fun activity-filled day, Sunday evenings are when the kids wrap up any of their unfinished school assignments, get their clothes ready for the next day, do their devotions and head to sleep. The young ones will typically sleep at 8:30pm while the older ones will head to bed between 9:00 and 10:00pm.  

Ivy, Serah and Esther from Kitalale in their daily devotions

Weekday Mornings In The Home

It takes a lot of ‘behind the scenes’ to get our kids ready to leave for school. Our Aunties and cooks normally start their day at 5:00am to make breakfast and give a hand to whomever may need one that morning. Older kids wake up at 5:20am, get dressed and are then greeted in the dining room with a hot cup of tea, an egg and seasonal snacks. As the kids finish their breakfast and enjoy each other’s company, they have to keep in mind they need to start loading the school bus at 6:15am to embark on a 45 minute ride to make it to school in time for their 7:30am start.

Our kids ready to head to school

The younger kids or those who get to attend a special school have a slightly more relaxed schedule and get to wake up at around 7:00am, get ready and leave for school at 8:00am.

Once the kids are off to school, our households continue to buzz with activity, as it’s a chance to get things done with minimal distractions (save for smiles and laughter provided by the kids who are too young for school yet). The staff start the morning off with a thorough cleaning and organization of each home. Smaller tasks like ironing and mending of worn out clothes are also completed as needed. Most importantly, Aunties and Uncles take this time to discuss any potential challenges that may be occurring and how to solve them.

Staff meeting at Kikuyu while the kids are at school

School Time

The Kenyan school day is similar than the one in the US where the day starts at 7:30am and runs to 3:30pm. Throughout the school day, the kids will get two breaks in the morning, a lunch break and one afternoon break. One of the most exciting parts of the day is the 3:30-4:30pm period where the kids get a chance to join clubs, mingle with other students and take part extracurricular activities. Some of the favorite activities our kids take part of are music, drama, dance, sports and other performing arts. We are proud to have a household full of talent – Mercy, Mary and Grace are our musicians; Freddy, Dennis, James, Meshack and Maria are our dancers while Issa (Football), Kevin (short distance runner) and Daniel (Javelin) are our athletes.

Our kids are keen to get to school

At around 4:30pm, our drivers pick up our kids and are brought back home. Throughout the ride you can spot the bopping heads from those who fall asleep; it’s usually more than half of the bus!

Weekday Evenings In The Home

Once home, Aunties and Uncles await for the kids to come back from school and are ready to hear all the stories and events from the day. The older kids and Aunties will usually help the younger ones complete their homework before it’s time for dinner. The smell and anticipation for food brings all the kids together at around 7:00pm where dinner is then served by the Aunties. Dinner is typically a combination of a protein source like chicken or beef, greens and carbohydrates like Chapati, Ugali or rice. The kids love eating fruit so they will also get seasonal fruits like mango, orange or watermelon. Before digging in, the kids say a word of prayer thanking God for provisions and blessing the hands that prepared the food.    

Our kids enjoying their meal after thanking God for all his blessings

To help with task distribution and promote collaboration, the kids take turns on clearing the tables, cleaning the dishes and sweeping the floors to make sure we show respect and appreciation towards our home. Slowly and surely, the kids start getting ready for bed time and make their way into their rooms for a good night sleep. By 8:30pm for the younger kids will be tucked in into their cribs and 10:00pm for the older kids will be tucked in their double-deck beds.  The Aunties and Uncles come around to make sure everyone’s settled and wish everyone a good night sleep.

Fabian and Terrence ready to get their day started

It’s thanks to our extended family of supporters like you that we are able to provide holistic and tailored care for each of our special kids. Our Aunties and Uncles provide love, nutritious food, education and so much more, empowering each and every kid to thrive and prosper with opportunity.    

Running two busy and thriving households wouldn’t be possible without you. Our homes require upgrades just like yours, and we’re thankful for your support on our previous campaigns to upgrade our water tank and to provide Kitalale’s new truck. These initiatives support our homes and kids to flourished.

We are blessed to care for these angels every day, and hope you’ll take a moment to see their smiling faces and learn about their stories. They’re sure to bring a smile to your day.

Meet Our Kids