Sunday, January 30, 2011

Our first weekend

The quilt giveaway ended today. However the genius typing this didn't figure the chip in correctly and it ended a day early..... SO if you were one of the ones wanting to get in on the give away and couldn't then you still have one more day. I will do the drawing on the 2nd. Sorry for all the delays! Oh yeah and I think I fixed the chip in.

Ok now on to babies!
Bohdan and Lyndsay!

Bohdan checking out the light. Very interesting!

Not sure what I was thinking by trying to get a pic with all of us in it. It was interesting.

Asher didn't want to be there he wanted to play chase under the palm. Yuri loves watching Asher especially when he gets close. Asher is having to relearn how to share. He is generally good but Yuri doesn't know how to play with the toys correctly and it irritates Asher so he will take the toys away.
Bohdan has become the new resident fuss bucket. He is so spoiled! He is so attached that he sobs if Josh or I leave the room. He is very sensitive.

Check out Yuri, trying to figure out Caius.

Caius is taking to his new brothers well.

Patty cake still a hit. Plus, don't know if you can tell but we are brushing the boys teeth and boy do they smell so much better. Plus I think they look better too!

We were out soaking up the sun while Josh cleaned the rug. Yuri is having some adverse reactions to something we are feeding him and has thrown up 3 times so far. My carpet shampoo is getting a work out. Anyway, while we were outside Yuri grabbed a hold of the hose and started pulling. He is very strong. He kept pulling and covered Caius with the loops. Caius didn't care, he joined in and then started chewing on the hose. I like this picture though because you can really see the difference between Yuri at 3 1/2 and Caius at 15 months.

Friday, January 28, 2011

first day home!

This was the scene Thursday night after we got home.

my 3 year old and 15 month old.

Friday lunch. It was crazy!

Mr. Bohdan in a big boy highchair!

Yuri playing with a musical toy and holding hand with my friend Tracy who came all the way from New Mexico to watch Asher and Caius while I was gone. THANK YOU Tracy!

Tracy holding Mozart and Yuri trying to take the stick away! Sibling rivalry.

This was Friday. It looks like Toys R Us threw up in our living room.

Oh the bliss!!! We went to our pediatrician this (friday) morning and got a game plan for the boy's medical care. First thing is to get Yuri to a Neurologist and Bohdan to our Cardiologist, he has had heart surgery but has quite a large murmur. We sent in stool samples on the boys to check for parasites.

Yuri is doing fabulous! His sedatives have worn off and he is not just his usual self he is better!! He is playing and is taking to this family thing really well. Bohdan is taking it all in and is very tired. He isn't eating so well but I figure it will all take time. He is already very spoiled and wants to held all the time.

We took family pictures I will try to upload later. I'm having pic uploading issues yet again.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

43 hours and we are home!!

Oh my goodness and it feels so good. The worst part of the whole ordeal was the hopeless feeling and the uncertainty. By the grace of God we got out on one of the only flights that left D.C. today. This was after sleeping in the airport. The boys were not convinced that this whole America deal is a better deal. They are now decompressing. We got in today at 3:30 after going to Chicago.

Thank you for your prayers and for all the support from all you whom I never met. God has been so good to us through all of this. Thank you for all of you who were so willing to go out in a blizzard to help us. To those who offered your homes to us even though you don't know us. I feel the love of the family of God. I love you all and I'm SO happy to be home. I have a few pics from the airport I will try to upload later.

We were so blessed to run into so many angels along the way that scavenged the planes, the terminals and even the lost baggage claim for baby food. For those who brought us pillows, blankets, milk and water. Most of them were ground crew walking by on their breaks. I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from those of you who offered your help (you know who you are :o) sorry I haven't replied to your emails) and from those of you who helped us in the airports. We are truly blessed and I'm so excited to watch these boys blossom.

oh yeah, and thanks for listening to my whine. I am so glad God is still faithful when I lose it.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Mt. Doom just tripled in size.

The flight from Munich to DC was wonderful. We had 2 whole rows to ourselves and things went so well. If we really were in the LotR it would have been like riding on the elphants. Then we got to DC... we were so excited! we are in the US. We only have one more leg to go. We get to see our families soon! After we get through security and such we learn our flight home, the last leg of our journey, was canceled due to weather. Continential

So United rebooked us on another flight with Continential and told us to run over there and check in. Here we go we get on the plane, Yuri of course is freaking out. All we need to do is get in the air and then we can put him down on the floor. The plane starts backing out..... then it stops..... then they tell us that a passanger is not feeling well and needs to get off the plane. The paramedics come to check him out. We wait. It gets hot. They tell us that the APU has failed and they can't run the A/C or start the engines without it. After 2 hours sitting on the plane they make us get off the palen saying they can't fix it. It was snowing so much that they couldn't push the plane back to the jet way. We just kept sliding from side to side. The they had to dig the jetway out of the snow.

This has been a nightmare, I can't even go into all the details. We have two seats out at 8am... I don't know.

Thank you for all the offers of help. As of right now we don't need anything. If we don't make that flight then it will be a different story.

We do need prayers. The boys are DONE! Robin and I had just enough energy, patience and stamina to make it home and now....

just frustration, exhaustion, and tears. not to mention two baby boys completely overwhelmed, exhausted and mad...

Please Pray we get out of DC!!!.

Mount Doom - leg 1

Well we are in Mordor and have started up the mountain. We are about 1/4 way to the top. I forgot to mention last night in my Lord of the Rings analogy that we have snuck around sleeping giants!

Anywho, we are in Munich. We left the apartment a little after 4am and our plane left around 7am. Josh called our pediatrician who gave me a dosage on the sedative we brought with us. It seemed high to us so we thought, we will give him have a half of a tablet (full tablet is a single dose) and then see how he does. 30-45 minutes later, the only change was that his eyes stayed closed a little longer when he blinked and he was much more aggitated. We gave him the other half of the tablet and started to board the plane.

Of course we have to go out on a bus and then off the bus and up the outdoor stairs to the plane. COLD!!! We pick up the boys and start to fold up the stroller. Now the stroller is new to us. Some fabulous family left a double stroller in country with our driver for anyone who needed one. I had gone looking for a stroller the other night and after going to 5 baby stores and mega markets I found nothing. So Niko suggested that we switch ours out with the double and Oh man I'm glad we did. This thing is a life saver. Both boys are doing well in it. Anyway another passanger comes to help us fold up the stroller. We learned the hard way that you can't fold it up while either seat is reclined. The man kept pushing and pushing and pushing. because of the language barrier I couldn't explain the problem and was pulling on the other end. I had covered Bohdan's head with a blanket and he was not happy. So my right hand is fighting to keep the blanket on Bohdan's head and my left hand and foot are fighting this guy to stop pushing on the stroller. So we finally get it popped out, the seats fixed and folded up. The man starts to put on the bungy cord and I notice that Robin is wrestling Yuri. He is beside himself. The cold and the noise of the plane was just too much. So we run up the stairs scooting by everyone and they were very nice to let us pass. Yuri continued all the way to the seats.

Robin rocked and soothed him but nothing was working. Then they turned off the cabin lights and he started to calm down. This of course was after a lot of dirty looks from people going out of their way to get up out of their seats to turn around and give it to us. We just shrugged it off. So its been over an hour since his last does and he is just barely asleep. If Robin moved her arm, which was asleep by the way, he would wake up. And not just wake up, he would wake up fighting mad and start screaming and kicking and flailing. She could calm him down and then something would stir him ( like the air conditioning come on and blowing on him) and it would happen all over again. Finally there was a little silence and then they turned the lights back on. Oi! He lost it. She would hold him close, let him just lay there, she tried everything and he was out of control!! I got another half of a tablet and gave it to him. Then him and I went to the back. I tried to rock him and he wouldn't have it. So we went to the bathroom. The stall had a changing table and I laid him on it. He was not happy but after a little bit he was soothed by the vibration. So I took him back and laid him on the floor and he fell asleep, still not a deep sleep but when he would wake up he wasn't freaking out. Poor little dude! What has he been on that this masive sedative barely touches him?

On a funny note, at passport control we had out all our passports. I tell Robin that I will keep her passport with the others in my jacket pocket. She agreed since she packed her jacket. Anyway, we get to Munich and they ask for passports... only three come out of the pocket! I look at Robin, she said 'Your kidding me!" I said ,"no" Now I don't know what look I have on my face but I am terrified. Obviously my face didn't match my feelings because Robin kept thinking I was joking. We started checking pockets and finally I found it. Whew!! Thank goodness..... then we noticed it was mine that was missing not hers!

Cool note, as we boarded the plain a man from the Ukraine asked if Bohdan has Downs Syndrome. I said yes. He said "I have a 7 year old son with DS!" WOW! He said that he and his wife are working with other parents of children with DS to help raise awareness in Ukraine. He mentioned the foundation they work with and said they are working on a scholl for their children since children with DS are not allowed in the public schools there. It was great to meet him!

Alrighty we are going to continue up the mountain, Yuri is passed out in the stroller and we leave 40 minutes, the plane ride will be 8 hours so hopefully he will stay asleep the whole time. I will update you again when I can!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Lord of the Rings

So I don't have time to write this because I need to be packing, sleeping, showering and many other things that I'm forgetting I'm sure but I have to share because we have laughed about it.

BTW, I had to step over the man two more times each time he was in a different position. I slipped twice today, Robin was surefooted and I actually say a local fall. Made my day!

Any way so I'm skyping with Josh and he reassures me that we are almost home. I told him the following which is kinda funny since our friend Caleb Lococo blogged about the same movie and their adoption road to Julia here.

I feel like we are in middle earth. We have fought battles and encountered new species. We have held our ground. We have been away from home for so long. We have prayed. We are tired. We have made new friends. We have eaten strange things. We have explored. We have held onto faith during the uncertain times. We have cried. We have laughed. We have ran, slipped, fallen. We have gone through so much to get to where we are. And we are SO close!! We have one more leg to go and it small compared to the rest of the journey.....Just one plane ride across the pond to home. And yet I feel as though we have come through the black gate and we are looking up at Mount Doom. The last leg. The dreaded plane ride. As I'm saying this Josh is laughing and laughing at my analogy. He said you'll make it and I'll be at the top waiting for you with a big hug. I told him he better be careful I might be a little singed after going through all the lava on the way.

I hope you find the humor in this. We do. We are hoping and praying for tomorrow to be nothing major. And for both boys to sail through it. Thank you for your continued support and your prayers I will let you know how 'Mount doom' goes. LOL :0)

LAST day!

Oh what a day! and its not even over yet.

we were supposed to be picked up at 9am our driver called at 8:05am and said to be ready in 20 minutes. After he heard the alarm in my voice he said 30 minutes. So we get ready really fast. Wake up the boys, feed them breakfast, change them and wait...... 9:05 comes around and our driver shows up.

We go for medical appointment. The doctor just kept shaking her head about the condition of the boys. By how small and malnourished these three year olds are. She gave me some suggestions as to where to start regarding medical care when we get back. One thing that eased my mind was she said the Yuri had had two skin hematomas removed, which explains these two massive scars on him. She kept saying severe mental retardation. I just smiled thinking you wouldn't say that if you knew them. I asked her for some medicine to give Yuri for the palne ride. I requested the same kind that Adeye gave Hailee to come home on. She didn't understand so we went to the pharmacy together. They must have opened 20 boxes looking for what I asked for. In the end she gave me an anti-stress and a calming sleep helper. She said they are very strong and Yuri is very little so use only little bit.

Well we do, wait.... nothing. Give a little more, wait...... nothing. Not even a hint of change. I'm glad we tested it today and not on the plane. I'm headed to another pharmacy now to try again.

While at the medical exams this man came by squatted down and started talking to Yuri, in english!! We were so excited! He said that he knew we were Americans because Robin smiled at him when he walked by. So that's the tell tell sign, not tennis shoes, or back packs, all though I'm sure they don't help, its common courtesy. HIs name was Chris and he and his wife are adopting a 17 year old and running into a lot of road blocks. They have been in the process since she was 15. They are hoping to come home on Thursday. Please pray for them.

We head off to the embassy and have to go through security. We knew what to expect so we were ready. We go through everything and then a guy comes out with a little strip of paper and runs it all along the stroller. ? He goes into a little room. When he comes out he asks if the children are on a special diet. We say 'no'. Then I say, 'yeah they are on baby food." Then he asks about it being special. No jsut regular baby food. then he says do you feed them powder ..... Yes their cereal is powder. He runs the stroller again, goes into the room and then returns and tells us we are ok. I guess they thought it was some other powdery substance. Robin and I just looked at each other in amazment. We have come so far and it could have all been ruined because they thought drugs were on our stroller. We just laughed.

We have our interview and the lady was super nice. She has family in Texas and then mentioned she has lived in Alamogordo, NM. Our jaws dropped! since Robin and our husbands went to highschool in a small town just a few miles from there. What a small world!! She could have been from anywhere in America!

In about 5 minutes the guy comes to the window and says Congratulations!! We got the visas, the passports, we are clear to go home.Robin and I were estatic. We were hugging each other, kissing the boys, and crying! It wa a great moment.

So we leave and have a long taxi ride back to the apartment. It is after 3:30pm when we get back and the boys are exhausted!! The only thing keeping them from a nap is 4 flights of stairs, by the way this is the first apartment that has not had an elevator, of course. So we are trudging up the stairs carrying the boys, our back backs, the stroller, wishing there was an elevator. We get to the third floor and we see it. We see him. He is a large man in his late 50's early 60's. He is dressed in a sweater jeans and jacket. There is a packet of cigarettes under his leg and he is out cold and snoring. He is sitting on the second step and his head is laying on the 4th step. His arms are splayed out to the sides of him. I stop look at Robin with wide eyes. She looks at him, then looks at me and we die laughing. You can't make this stuff up. there is no way we can get around him carrying the kids. Robin puts down the stroller and I give her Bohdan. I put my foot in the small space between his right arm and his body. I step over his arm and step next to his head. I throw my back pack on the landing and come back. Robin hands me the boys one at a time and then makes her way by the sleeping man trying not to step on him. We had dropped the stroller and had made noise. I don't know how he didn't wake up. We laughed and laughed about the sleeping man in the stairs. Only here.

Well gotta run to the pharmacy. We are meeting some other Reece's Rainbow families tonight for dinner and then in the morning we are catching a plane outta here. Our plane leaves at 6:45am arriving in Munich at 8:15am. Leave Munich at 11:35am arrive in DC at 3:10 and leave at 5:41 and arrive home at 8:26pm. Thank you all so much for your prayers!!! and for following our journey.

Monday, January 24, 2011

This Evening

Thank you Jesus!! We got a much needed non eventful evening. Yuri was doing better than yesterday and we all just relaxed and played. Tomorrow we go get their medical examinations done and then hopefully pick up their visas. Here are some pictures to share our evening with you. Thank you all for your prayers, please keep them coming.

He smiled on his own when he saw Robin and her camera. It was wonderful!!

We were so proud of him that he didn't cringe or squint when he saw the camera.

We were trying to get a pic of them both smiling and laying together. Yuri was having a blast. Bohdan..... "he keeps touching me!" Which is funny because if we are wiping Yuri's face or something and Yuri starts fussing at us, Bohdan will grunt and put his hand out like "stop it!"
He will also come over and check things out if he thinks we might be bothering his brother. He is so protective and it is heart warming.

Skyping with Daddy.

day 947- I have no idea

Sorry but I don't know what day we are on. Thank you for all of your advice, prayers and support in the comments. It means a lot to us!

The boys didn't go to sleep until 11pm last night. They slept all night which is more than I can say for Robin and I. It was freezing and we gave the boys all the blankets. To date we have only been sleeping with a sheet but last night we needed more. At 3am I got up and boiled water and put hot pots of water around our room but they didn't help. Luckily the boys were warm and didn't wake up until 8am.

Yuri picked up right where he left off. He fought the diaper change, getting dressed, he would sit still a moment and then start up again. We haven't found a trigger other than he wants to be in full control. We have tried everything that was suggested in the comments and they only magnify things. His music would only keep him still a song and then he would throw the phone. He won't keep head phones in or watch tv and the sleep aid I gave him didn't work at all.

Thank the Lord for the stroller. I don't know what we would do if we didn't have it. He will sit in there. He fusses and squirms and rocks, and bangs and throws what he can but it is a safe place for him to do this. He actually fell asleep in it today at the embassy.

Robin and I are done and done. We are looking forward to and dreading the trip all at the same time. Thank you for your prayers.

Oh yeah and Bohdan...... he is happy as a clam!!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The train ride.....

This was the picture Robin took this morning. What a happy guy!!

Both boys have been doing so good. I am so proud of them. This is a super huge change for them. The boys went down last night by themselves. Yuri woke up a little while later and it took me a few hours to figure out the problem but now I know.

They are eating well. They don't like everything we make which is just baby food in jars and cereal (this is what we were told to feed them per the orphanage). I tried to make them chicken stew and then I used a food grinder I brought with me to grind it up. I thought for sure they would eat it but no way. They eat stuff we don't expect them too though. Robin and I aren't being picky if they are eating we are happy.

We caught the 'day' train to the main city. I expect a 'day' train to arrive during the day. Nope, we arrived at 10pm. The boys were so tired and they wouldn't sleep on the train. Bohdan was his usual sweet laid back self and just sat in our laps. Yuri...... Yuri was not ok. He finally had had enough of the newness. He was beside himself. Fussing loudly, flailing around, hitting us and him. The train proved to be too much. He would do good for a little bit but then work himself back into a frenzy.

Please pray!! Please pray the plane rides are not the same. Please pray they are better. Please pray that he can handle it all and rest. That he will be content.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Tatianna (the woman who has fought tirelessly for these boys for weeks!), Bohdan, me, Robin, and Yuri!

Tatianna, Bohdan, me, Yuri and Valentin. I wanted to get a picture with them so the boys will know who the people were who fought, stressed, worked and worked, drove like crazy all so they could become part of our family. We are forever indebted to Tatianna and Valentin.

Right when we got to the apartment.

Tired boy.

They will inevitably end up together trying to play with the same toy. Even though they annoy each other sometimes I think they find comfort in one anothers presence.

Sucking his thumb.

Bohdan is such a ham! He would be doing his own thing and then Robin would pull out her camera and point it at him and he would give her this huge smile. The smile didn't last, once the picture was taken or a few seconds had gone by he would quit smiling. It was hysterical. We kept testing it and he would smile on cue!

Isn't he handsome

He had my phone all day long just holding it to his ear and listening to his music. Josh made him a playlist before I left so it is all of Yuri's favorite songs over and over.

I think the picture speaks for itself.

Guess who we got?!! Two amazing and precious boys!

January 22, 2011 Yuri and Bohdan's Gotcha Day!! The first day of the rest of their lives. The first night they will know love. The first night they will be part of a family. Their first day not spent in a crib. Their first taste of freedom. Orphans no more!! Forever part of a family. Never to look back!

We busted them out around 11am this morning. One of our favorite Nurses was holding Bohdan when we got there. When she saw us she just squeezed him and kissed him like 'no not yet.' They were dressed and luckily we took enough of the right clothes. They weren't happy with Yuri's hat so they put an orphanage one on him. I'm not complaining it is adorable. Its the same one as in the other pictures.

When we got to the apartment we put out thick blankets and let the boys just hang out on the floor. Bohdan just stayed laying on his back which is exactly what we expected. Yuri moved around a little and loved to drop toys on the hard floor and listen to the noises. Bohdan was almost asleep when we brought them their bottles. Both boys ate like champs which gave them a burst of energy! All of a sudden Bohdan is on his tummy and army crawling across the room and off the blankets.

Yuri went to his tummy and pushed up on all fours and crawled. Not far but he crawled. They were everywhere! Robin and I looked at each other in disbelief! We didn't think we were going to have to baby proof this apartment but it seems like that is necessary. These guys are very active. I'm not sure they have ever had the opportunity to move in large spaces, they weren't great at crawling but they definitely made use of the space. They would throw balls and then go get them. We could stack toys on one side of the room and they would come over and knock them down. We were thrilled!!
The boys DID absolutley amazing today. Today could not have gone any better than it did. Robin and I are sitting here at 10pm and both boys have been asleep for 30 minutes. The coolest thing is that we gave them a bath. We just couldn't wait. Bohdan LOVED the bath. He was splashing and playing with toys. He wasn't too keen on the hair rinsing. Yuri was very nervous about the bath room and lost it getting in the bath. I got in with him and we did a quick bath. I got the sprayer expecting him to freak out, but once it touched his head he stopped. He was completely calm. He loved the water running on his head.
We did a lotion rubs downs twice today and figure they will be necessary a few times a day till these boys get hydrated. We are so proud of them. It has got to be super scary for them and yet they have acted like this is no big deal. Thank you Jesus!!!
Check out this beautiful slide show that Robin made.
go to the 'site' then 'client proofing'
password 'winkles'

Friday, January 21, 2011

Day 5- the last goodbye.

My cool guys!! I guess Asher had followed our kitten Trixie up to the top of the upright piano (very high!). Asher went over and got Josh's sunglasses and put them on his forhead just like his Daddy. Josh,noticing that Asher is mimicking him, puts his own sunglasses over his eyes. Asher does the same. Hence the 'cool' picture!

Valentin took this for us. We were visiting in the forey (sp?).


Lovin' on Bohdan!

Oh my! How handsome.

Fruit Ninja on Robin's I pad. He is a total Ninja!!

What a big boy!

A beautiful picture of Robin and Yuri.

Plugging ears!! I will plug his ears and he will look around like what is that noise!!

My sweetie!!

Today was the last day we will say good bye to the boys. Robin and I were explaining to them that tonight is the last night they will stay in the orphanage, tonight is the last night they will sleep away from their family. We told them that today was the last day they will wear orphange clothes with numbers on them. That tomorrow they will wear their very own clothes and pink will be a color they will only see on flowers and girls. We told them that they will not be alone anymore and that this is the last night they will spend as orphans. I thank the Lord our God that He has made this possible and that He chose us to be Yuri and Bohdan's family. What a great honor this is! We serve an awesome God who loves and cares for the least of these. My heart is overwhelmed by His great big love for us.

The boys did great at the visit today. The latest and greatest is 'Indian'. Bohdan will make noises with his mouth and I will pat his mouth to make funny sounds. Today all I would have to do is put my hand to my shoulder (my right not my left, if I tried the left he would push it away) and he would grab my arm stick his face out, pucker his lips and make noise so I would pat his mouth to make 'indian' noises. Yuri loved this! It didn't matter what he was doing but the moment he heard that noise he would squirm so he could watch and then he would laugh and laugh. Both boys did great today! Robin and I absolutely cannot wait to bust them out tomorrow!

We had to run around and do some paperwork today. After calculating our expenses we figured we could scrape by with the money we had. Then there were extra 'fees' today so we asked to go to a bank. Let me just say, it wasn't impossible but if you are coming after us bring extra and hide it away for 'just in case.'

We got the list of items the boys are fed. Big shocker to us was coffee in their morning puree!!!!!!!!! Anyway we went to the store to stock up and realized they call many of the things we use for babies different names. Like stew is baby food meat and veggies, porrige is different flavored baby cereal. There was crackers, cheese, yogurt and cottage cheese on the list. I'm hopeful then that they don't have a milk allergy. For the life of me I cannot find crackers at the grocery store so I think they are giving them cookies.
With this thought in mind I offer the boys a cookie today. They knew exactly what a cookie was and not in a good way. They didn't just push is away and fuss they were visible agitatted and upset that there was a cookie present. They didn't calm down until we put it away. Keep in mind we never tried to put it in their mouths. Oh Lord, what have these precious angels endured that the sight of a cookie scares them to death.
Thank you all for your prayers. There is a good possiblility that everything will work out and that we will leave on Saturday. We are leaving the apartment at 10am tomorrow morning to go bust the boys out. YeeeHaww!!!!!!!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Day 5- attack of the zombies

As always, listening to music

Is that the sadest face? Poor baby, his eyes are so red from the gunk being cleaned out of them.

Me and Yuri

Robin loving on Bohdan

Bohdan playing with Robin's I pad. This kid is SO smart. She showed him a game and in seconds he was playing it on his own. He is one smart booger!!

It has been quite a roller coaster of a day. First things first though the count and then questions.

Count: Robin- 4 slips 0falls
Autumn - 4 slips 0 falls
Locals- 6 slips (it is rare to see locals slip on the ice but I guess today was extra slippery)

About the change of the birth date. We changed their birth date to make them both younger. This is going to allow Bohdan to recieve 6 months of in home therapy and will give Yuri a better chance at having one on one therapy. Where we live 3 years old is the age that they go into group therapy and I think we can all agree these littles aren't ready for that. However, ATTENTION ALL MOMMAS ADOPTING FROM THIS REGION, even though it is legal to change the birth date by 6 months in some parts of this country, it is not legal in this region. Big suprise......

The only reason they are allowing it is because the judge wrote it in his decree and he wasn't supposed to do that. None of their computers know how to process it and it has everyone in a tizzy.

The talking monkey I got at build a bear. I didn't want to carry the big bears so we got small frys and recorded my voice in the little voice recorder disc. Then they cut open the monkey, took out some stuffing, put in the disc and sewed him up. Easy as pie. I got one for each of my boys and they have been a big hit.

So today was the epitome of emotional rollercoaster. Tatianna and Valentine pick us up. Tatianna had called us and said the doctor was going to be out of orphanage tomorrow so we needed to give the donation today. I go to the money belt and I guess we spent too much the first trip because we are running low. I didn't bring enough money back with me so we are trying to figure out how to get money here with out it costing any appendages. I would REALLY appreciate any advice on how to accomplish this if you have any to share. So anyway we are driving along and we ask about the air raid siren. They don't understand so I have to make the noise. They start laughing. Valentine starts saying something. Tatianna explains it was just a test and that Valentin can just see us scared in our apartment. He doesn't speak English but he knows a few words. he is laughing and says "Russian Invados", he says something about Veitnam and laughs and mimicks us running for cover and then says "in Metro". And then he laughs and laughs. He then says, "Zombies!" and acts like a Zombie! He had us rolling!! We were laughing so hard. Robin and I thought his few choice English words were funny. Zombies!

So we get to the orphanage and visit with the boys. Tatianna comes up and says that the passports will not be ready until Monday afternoon. She says "its ok though, you get train to main city on Monday and go to Embassy on Tuesday". I then remind her about our plane tickets that we were told to buy weeks ago. She starts looking worried. Poor thing, I feel like our adoption has really stressed her out. So she gets on the phone and works her magic. We visit the orphanage doctor and give him the donation. He says that the money will be used to help the kids and that all the construction we see is funded through donations like ours. Yeah cuz those new doors are really helping the babies but I digress.

We leave and go to passport office. We walk up the most dangerous stairs I have ever been on. They were tile and very short. Did I mention everything was wet and slick today. I am pleased to announce no one fell up or down the stairs. We go up and meet with a lady who seems to be yelling at Tatianna. We are worried. She is walking around the office and is visibely upset. Oh my! Robin and I try to stay out of her way. She hands Tatianna her coat and she helps her get it on and they smile. Then Tatianna says something to her and she snaps at her 'No'. Then they both smile at us. We leave and Robin and I bust up laughing. Tatianna says "not about you, she is upset at her boss." whew!! Tatianna gets on the phone some more and I'm not at liberty to discuss how but we should be able to pick up the boys on Saturday. I have made the Embassy appointment for Monday and hopefully we can fly out on Wednesday. Thank you for all your prayers. Please keep them coming we are not out of the woods yet. Tatianna is bending over backwards for us and she is not sure what she is trying to do will work. Please pray for her also, she is working SO hard on this.