This time of year it gets very hectic here at North Platte Area Habitat for Humanity. We are working on three different houses at the same time after all. Conversations revolve around siding and paint, concrete and plumbing, all those things that go into the house. We tend to concentrate our efforts on things like making sure the electrician is able to get onto the job site and insuring the Partner Family is getting their Sweat Equity hours completed. We don't really take the time to slow down and consider the magnitude of the work we are doing. But when we do, what a gift we're given.
The first time I ever attended a house dedication was just before I began working for NPAHFH. I did not have the opportunity to work with the family so did not know the parents or their three kids by name, or at all for that matter. But when the keys were handed over and all the volunteers and dedication attendees were gone the little daughter grabbed by hand and asked if I wanted to see where her room was. She was giddy with excitement so, of course, I followed her.
We headed down the hall and ducked into the first bedroom. She'd spread out the quilt she'd been gifted by the Presbyterian Women's Quilting Guild on the floor, under the window, to indicate where her bed would be situated. She shared with me that this was the best spot because she could lay in bed and look out at the stars at night before she went to sleep. Then she rushed over and flung open the doors to her closet. Her very own closet, she explained. Where HER shoes would be and HER clothes would hang and where HER toys would live. She then threw herself onto the floor and rolled around on the carpet relishing how soft and comfortable it was before jumping back up again. She counted the outlets and showed me how she could reach the light switch. She could barely contain her joy in that moment. Everything was amazing and new and wonderful.
Habitat through a child's eyes is a gift we give ourselves at every house dedication. It is that excitement that makes that house a home. It never gets old for this Executive Director.