Monday, October 5, 2009

sleep deprived but doing well

We are back in Moscow and have been since Saturday evening. We have Ella!! She is napping right now after getting up at 3:30 in the morning. The time zones have really messed up our systems. It is useless to get into a routine because we will be in another time zone tomorrow night.

Ella's gotcha day was awesome. We went to the orphanage around noon and spent a little time in the groupa. We got a lot of pictures and video. Sorry, i will have to post pictures when we are home- I forgot the cable to download from my camera.
After the orphanage, we went straight to the airport and were off to Moscow. Ella was great on the plane. She slept about 1 hour of the 8 hour trip but she was content just to lay down on the seat. It was nice because our court was held on Wednesday so Thursday and Friday afternoon we were able to have her in our hotel room. I think this really helped her not be so nervous when it was time to actually take her out for good.

It is really amazing what a transformation in her personality we saw just getting her out of the orphanage. She is like a different child. She is happy and playful, affectionate and engaging. It brings back so many memories of when we adopted Connor - he was the same way.

We have an apartment in Moscow. It is small but modern and nice. We have been cooking in except for 2 meals at McDonalds. the largest McDonalds in the world is here. We are about a 15 minute walk from Red Square. We walked there on Monday and took a bunch of pictures. Yesterday we did an english speaking tour of the Kremlin. It was amazing - there are a lot of beautiful buildings and cathedrals. The cathedrals reminded me of Kiev's Lavra.

It is amazing how big this city is! I didn't imagine it to be as big. Everything is in good repair - the sidewalks, buildings etc.

I will say it has been strange that we have been searching for baby food jars/food all over and have been unsuccessful so far. Don't worry - Ella has been eating well. I think she is heavier now than when we left the orphanage - or it may just be my sleep deprived bodies perception!

We haven't had to do much here adoption related really. We filled out our documents for the US embassy. Ella had her physical (which is required for her US Visa) but the doctor came to our apartment. today we have of visa interview at the embassy. Then we wait in the car while our facilitator registers her at the foreign ministry. That is it and tomorrow we hop on a plane home. We are sooo ready to get home.

Ella just woke up from her nap so I am signing out for now. I'll post pictures soon.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Hi from Moscow

We are here in Moscow at the airport wasting time before our next flight to Magadan. We have a 10 hour layover and have about 3 hours left. We will be heading to the gate soon.

We actually go some sleep on the plane and took some cat naps in the airport. We are more relaxed this trip because we know the lay of the land.

We get into Magaday at 12:35 Monday afternoon and will see Ella. We can't wait. I bet she has changed in the last 10 weeks.

I will post in a few days- probably from Moscow.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Room is Ready!

I am really happy with how it turned out. Here are the after pictures! If you want to see larger images just double click on them.

Friday, September 11, 2009


We got our court date on Wednesday - September 30th!!!!!

It has been a busy week trying to get things ready at work for when I take leave and all the planning and paperwork associated with the trip.

We have our flights. We will leave Saturday September 26th in the morning and get to Magadan on Monday afternoon the 28th. We will be in Magadan until Saturday. Once court is done we have to process Ella's documents (passport, birth certificate etc.) so that takes a couple days.

We arrive in Moscow on Saturday. We will be doing business on Monday and Tuesday. Ella will have to have a physical before the US Embassy will issue her visa. We also have to register her at the Russian Consulate.

There will be some free time this trip unlike our first trip which was mainly travel. We are looking forward to seeing Moscow.

Ella's room is almost done. My mom and I are putting the finishing touches on this weekend. I'll post after pictures soon.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Updates from Russia

We got Ella's new measurements and she has gained 3 pounds in one month! Here head grew 3cm and her height grew 5cm. This is all good news. I told our adoption agency that we need to get back over there before she is all grown up! the notes also said she stands on her own but does not take steps.

We also got word that the official release letter that takes Ella off the databanks in Russia was received. This means that we can file for court on Monday. Hopefully we will get a fast judge who will assign a date quickly.

Ella's room has really just been in the planning stages and I have been gathering things here and there. This is the weekend we paint and put it together. I want to make some curtains too. It is a tall order to get it all done this weekend but I would think it would be feasible in a couple. So, I am posting a before picture and when the room is done I will post an after.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

My Amazing Birthday Boy!

You should have heard Connor last night. Darren is putting him to bed and he calls me up there and Connor asks me “How does God hear me? How do I know he hears me when he doesn’t talk back to me and I can’t see him? I ask him to bring my baby sister home but I don’t know if he hears me because she isn’t home.” So I told him that God is everywhere and he hears us and he helps us all the time. I told him how God helped us find him because he knew we were meant to be a family. I said sometimes it takes time for God to make things happen.

So then he said his prayers and at the end he asked God again to bring his baby sister home and he almost started crying. I said “Oh Buddy – God heard you!” I told him that we need to get her room ready first before she gets here. Then he was excited to help paint the room.

Happy Birthday Connor!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Pictures From Trip One

Oh and the name is going to be Ella!

We can't post identifying picture of Ella yet since the adoption is not final. I will say she is a little squirt. Six month clothes fit her perfectly right now. Hopefully she will be into 9 months soon after she is home.

Here she is hugging her dolly.

View of the Magadan and one of the two bays that surround it.

I will post more pictures of Magadan soon.