Sunday, July 12, 2009

We Are Here!



Deep breath----- Aaaaaaaaah, the smell of Ukraine! We are here! The trip was uneventful……. Dennis was such an amazing little traveler, so was Julia. We managed to get some sleep, so when we first got here after seeing our apartment we all went out with our facilitator to find a place to exchange money, and get a quick tour of the area around our apartment. We are downtown, walking distance from the SDA building, McDonalds, and the most beautiful park!

First bit of bad news----- our SDA appointment to officially be referred Alexsey is not until the 14th instead of tomorrow. Really that is not a bad thing at all--- just more time to explore the city and possibly meet up with other adoptive couples! Simply means, we are one day behind the process, that’s all.

On the way back from eating at the “Potato House”, I hit my leg on a pole sticking up out of the ground while walking. I won’t lie, IT HURTS!

John, Julia, Dennis, and I are about to head out for the evening---- hopefully for a little grocery shopping including some ice-cream which I have been craving, and to find an internet café. To all of you again---- Thank you for everything--- your prayers, your help, your encouraging words…… you are all here with us in spirit and we wouldn’t have been able to be here without you!

On another note, we found out today that Anna’s Russian half sister has been trying to get in touch with us for the last year---- but had been unsuccessful since we had moved. Our wonderful neighbors from our previous home gave the letters to other neighbors who we are still in touch with us and so now we have them! And phone numbers. And a picture. Apparently, there is a group of people that work with older kids in the area that Anna came from, and one woman is particularly close to Anna’s half-sister. She also wrote with the mindset that the reason why we hadn’t written back was because we didn’t want contact, so she was trying to encourage us to get in touch anyway. That couldn’t be further from the truth---- so as soon as we get back home we will get together a package and possible set up a phonecall. And guess what---- the half-sister’s fiancé happens to be named Aloshya!


Here is a picture of the yummy salad John ordered for me. It was delicious!


Don't you love the high chairs for the little kids? Pretty cool and gives new meaning to the word "high" chair. :)

56 comments:

Luke's Mom said...

It's so good to hear that you all had an uneventful trip getting there. I will be praying that your leg heals soon and also that the time you have there will be wonderful. May God richly bless you as you continue to bless those around you.

Love in Christ,
Suzi

hadassahrose said...

I am so excited for you!!! Have a great time "exploring". Praying everything goes good for you!

Kathy C. said...

Wishing you a wonderful trip.

Amy L said...

I'm so glad you made it there safely! Have fun exploring and I look forward to hearing about your SDA apt.
Amy

Molly C said...

Woohoo! I was trying to explain Dennis' condition to my mom so I just showed her a picture. She said "oh he is a cutie!!!" (see, if I show her enough pictures of Dennis and Alosha she'll totally understand why I want to adopt)

Hug sweet little Aleksy for me please!

Charissa said...

Oh man, you are making me miss Ukraine! I loved the food there. That salad looks amazing. Can you tell I'm hungry? hee hee

Anonymous said...

That is really cool mom.We miss you all.We are doing good LOVE RACHEL

Michelle said...

WOOHOO!!!!!!!!

so glad all went well as far as travels... definite answer to prayer... and that Dennis did so well on such a long flight!

although i've been following you since before Dennis even came into the picture, i'm particularly interested in following along on this journey because you actually have some of your other kids with you - Dennis is back in his homeland, and Julia is old enough to be able to appreciate the differences and actually SAY what she's thinking about all of it.

perhaps she could do a guest blog entry sometime to give us her perspective?


and it's cool that Dennis will be not only back in Ukraine but in the very building he lived. the pictures you take on this trip will likely mean a lot to him when he's older.

praying for all of you, and that everything goes smoothly. enjoy that extra day - even though it'll be one day more between you & Alexsey, it will be good to get yourselves adjusted to the new time zone & environment.

keep us posted! :-)

- michelle

Jamey & Catherine said...

Praise God for safe travel to Ukraine. I am thrilled to see you are so close to many things. Can't wait for more updates!

Carol G said...

I'm so glad that the trip was uneventful--uneventful trips always seem shorter!

Sorry about your leg, Christine. I hope it feels better soon.

I'm not a crier at all, but seeing Julia walking in the park in Ukraine with Dennis made me tear up a bit. Seeing her there is the result of all her hard work. She is quite a girl! I know you're so proud of her.

Michelle said...

i know i already left a comment and i know this is TOTALLY random... but in celebration of your arrival in ukraine i started reading from the beginning of this blog as a reminder of how far God has brought you all... and i ran across something.

someone sent you an email about spina bifida kids having hydrocephalus and needing a VP shunt.

just wanted to let you know that this is the procedure i had 7 months ago, so if Alexsey does end up needing one, i'm more than willing to talk with you about what to expect and what goes on from the patient's point of view (COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from what most parents/doctors say cuz they don't go through it! :-P) as i was diagnosed with hydrocephalus/pseudo tumor cerebri at a VERY late age (usually found as an infant; i'm 22).

praying though that Alexsey is healthy & healed!

- michelle

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you got there safely! I have been thinking of you and praying for you to have an awesome trip. Dennis is the sweetest,sweetest little boy, he just melts my heart! I hope you can continue the updates, I really look forward to them.

Sincerely,
Jodi Lewandoski
St.Michael,MN

Karis said...

YAY! I am thrilled that you are so close to reuniting with your son! Praying and thinking of your family often!

Anonymous said...

So happy you landed safe in Uk.. You must be very excited to see Alexsey. I loved looking at the pictures. Can't wait to see more.. Make sure you post alot!
Have fun in Uk.. Blessings..
Stacey G. in NY

Anonymous said...

You are craving ice cream...hahaha, of course you are craving ice cream, you're an expectant Momma who's quite far along! ;-)

I am so glad the trip has gone well so far and can't wait to read that he is 'officially' yours and you're headed back home! God is good, all the time.

Sarah

Taylor said...

I love the picture of Dennis on the airplane!! Hope everything goes well! :) I'll keep praying for you guys!

Empty Arms said...

Glad that you all made it safely. How is the leg.. hope the pain went away. Love the "high" chair and can't wait to see new pictures

Anonymous said...

Finnally sat down and read back several posts to see how you are all doing.so exciting!!!! Denis looks like he is having a great time. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.
Mary Hop

Amy said...

Yay!! You're there!! It feels like yesterday that we were in Kiev and I was telling my husband your story and we were praying that you wouldn't have to wait until November or so due to crazy law changes. And there you are! God is so good.

Tia said...

Welcome at long last! If Alosha has as much character as my Little Fish his Spina Bifida won't slow him down very much at all! Looking back at the photos from last year he would appear to be doing so much already. As for the rest; you'll deal with it as and when you need to. It sounds as though your trip has already brought you unexpected gifts; may God continue to bless you and to hold you fast as you enter this new stage in your long journey to bring A home at last.

Tia

Tia said...

Welcome at long last! If Alosha has as much character as my Little Fish his Spina Bifida won't slow him down very much at all! Looking back at the photos from last year he would appear to be doing so much already. As for the rest; you'll deal with it as and when you need to. It sounds as though your trip has already brought you unexpected gifts; may God continue to bless you and to hold you fast as you enter this new stage in your long journey to bring A home at last.

Tia

Missy said...

So glad you arrived safely!! How's the jet lag? Looks like you are having a good trip already. Wonderful! Your apartment looks really nice, too! Hugs all around;

Missy

Jenn said...

Yay! So glad you all arrived safely! I'm sorry you hurt your leg, sweetie. :( Praying it will heal quickly!

I can't wait to read the next update! :)

Terri said...

So glad you made it there. To be so close to him, yet so far! My thoughts are with you this week! Can't wait to hear how the meeting goes!

So happy for Anna. That is amazing. Can't wait to hear more about that, either.

kelly said...

Yeah Glad to hear you are all there safe and sound,I cnat wiat to hear all about it.

Terri-Anne said...

Hurray! Thanks for checking in! My daughter and I have been anxiously checking this blog to see if you had made it there yet,and how things were going.....Your apartment looks beautiful, the kids look happy. I have such a heart for international adoption, but alas, not the financial status to allow it. Thanks for bringing us along!
(I hope your leg feels better soon!)

Anonymous said...

So glad to hear your trip went well and are settled in. The two older one's are doing great here. Should be headed back to your place shortly.
Love, Mom

Tami said...

Does it seem a little surreal?! :) Every time we went back to Russia or Ukraine it took me awhile to readjust...but oh, how I love readjusting! The food, the sights, the sounds! I have to admit, I'm a little green right now with envy. Enjoy for me!

The Dulls said...

yay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Praise God!

Mellimaus said...

YEY! Great to hear that you made it! LOVE the pics, can't wait to hear more!....What language do they speak in Ukraine?

Jenn VH said...

Happy to hear an update from you. Sorry to hear about your leg--hope it heals quickly! It seems surreal that you are there--I remember first reading your blog about adopting Alexsey and it seems so long ago and yet the time seems to have flown by too (at least for me--I'm not the "expectant" Mama--I love the analogy, by the way!). Eat some ice cream for me--it's our family's favourite treat when we're out together!
God bless!
~Jenn VH
British Columbia, Canada

Tina in CT said...

I've been checking all weekend and see that many others have been doing the same.

Glad to hear that the trip went smoothly and that the apt. is very nice (looks it). But, sorry to hear about your leg. Hope it doesn't hamper your doing a lot of walking around.

The extra day will allow the 4 of you to get a little more adjusted to the 11 hour time change. Good that some sleep was had by all on the flight from the US.

Why didn't your PO from where you lived in CA forward your letters from the Ukraine to Anna? I'd be upset with that PO. Glad that you finally found out and that you'll have the letters and can call her half sister once you're home in CA.

How long will this trip be in the Ukraine and when will you or John go back for court and to bring Alexsey home?

Thinking of you and know that Tuesday won't come soon enough for the 4 of you.

Mike and Gail said...

I am so excited for you guys. How much fun an extra day to explore.. Have fun for us too. Wish we were there.

Sally- That Girl! said...

Glad to see you made it safe and uneventful is a good bonus!!! Can't wait to see the first pictures of you guys together!

deb said...

*SQUEEEEEE*
So glad that you are all there safe and sound, and that the trip was good. You have all been in our prayers. Can't wait for the the next update!
Deb

deb said...

AND- your pics brought tears to my eyes. This first one, of the four of you, your Julia's face is just beaming. Such a wonderful young woman. The one with Dennis and his Daddy- there are no words. All you have to do is look at that beautiful face. AND- I want one of those salads!

Christine, John, Julia and Dennis- our prayers are with all of you. What an amazingly beautiful family. Alexey (and all of you!) is/are so blessed.

Deb

Michelle said...

oh wow this makes me miss Ukraine SOOOO much... I can't even tell you.

our prayers are with you!

Jill said...

SO VERY pleased you are safely there@
Praying for each day to bring you joy and peace as you add to your family!

Kelly said...

YAAAAYYYYY!!! One step closer to your boy. Can't wait to hear more.
Give Alexey a big hug from us when you see him!!
XOXOXO

Jojo, Julz, Jules said...

So glad you will be able to blog while there...I have been thinking about you since you left! Glad it was smooth sailing on the flights, as someone else said, "they go faster" that way!
Have fun while waiting for your appointment.
julianne

Jojo, Julz, Jules said...

So glad you will be able to blog while there...I have been thinking about you since you left! Glad it was smooth sailing on the flights, as someone else said, "they go faster" that way!
Have fun while waiting for your appointment.
julianne

Connie said...

Glad you made it safely! Take care of yourselves - have fun! - and I hope everything goes smooth for you. LOVE to you all, from all of us :)

ps. Brad was glad to get John's call before you flew out... and my number is the primary one. It usually is on... I was just 'off' (napping to make up for a sleepless night) and didn't hear it. Glad they were able to chat a bit!

Carmencita said...

Cristina que tal ? estamos en la plaza de la independencia (Maidan) en el mcdonals desayunamos a veces,suerte para mañana.
Telefono ucraniano 80660782442 llamame por favor.....

besos.
carmencita.

Kelli said...

this is so exciting. Stay safe, have fun, keep posting! hugs and prayers for you all

Annie said...

You have so many friends, I always feel a little redundent responding...but can't help it! I envy you being there! Seeing the salad and the park just made it worse!

Nice to hear Anna's sister is in touch...as you know those contacts are so precious to me. Some friends whose Russian children's older brother just got married took all four of the children back to Russia for the wedding - and stood in as the parents, enjoying all that fun tradition!

I'm excited for you and love living vicariously!

Mary Olivia said...

Hooray for Ukraine!

Cammie Heflin said...

So glad you are there! It looks gorgeous there, have a wonderful time! I can't wait to see pix of you with that beautiful boy!

Milena said...

I'm thrilled to see that you have arrived! I can't wait to see pictures of Alexsey in your arms + with his little brother!! And also hearing what the orphanage staff said about seeing how wonderfully Dennis has changed in a year!

Praying that everything goes smoothly!

And I find it really really strange that the letters weren't forwarded to you. Glad you it finally happened though!

Julie said...

So glad you made it!!! I hope you have a wonderful trip! I wish we were there with you!

Martha said...

I do love that high chair!

I am looking forward to watching this part of the story unfold. You have many more "internet travelers" along with you this summer. That means more well wishes and many more prayers!

DoveFamily said...

I've been out of town, and am trying to get caught up on all my favorite blogs. So glad you guys made it safely. Mmmmm, I love the potato house! We visited it in a couple of different regions. And the salad you pictured is one we now make at home often.

Praying that all goes well!
Jenn

Cara and Doug said...

Glad you arrived safely! Doug and I ate at the Potato House...our apartment was right up the hill from there! Yummy Food! (And close to the McDonald's when you miss home!)
We'll pray for referral papers tomorrow evening! It would be wonderful to have your meeting and get papers all in one day so you can head out to see your little man! Our prayers are with you all the way!

Anonymous said...

hi mommy,daddy,julia,and dennis I really miss you guys.I hope Alex is doing great. I love you guys so much. I can't wait till you com home. Have fun exploring the world in Ucrain.
PS.I really really can't wait till you come home.

Anonymous said...

Oops! I forgot to put my name. I am the anonymous at 2:17. anna

Wife to the Rockstar said...

So happy you made it safe and sound! Can't wait to follow your journey!

Andrew said...

We stayed in the exact same apartment and played in that exact park 1.5 years ago!! Brings back memories:)

Kelly