Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 29

This is the candy that the teachers were passing out to the kids at snack time.  They gave me one and one bite told me that there is alchohol in this candy.  This is the second one I have run accross.  So, just so you know, don't buy this one.  I guess its just for orphans.

This is one sweet boy.  You don't always see that in them when they hang out with their friends or are just hanging out, but when you play one on one with them, their real personalities come out and it just melts your heart.

I tried forever to take Alex's picture and he always hides from me...but, you give them the camera and tell them to go off and take pictures and you are sure to get one of them and their friends!

This is him with his friend in their room.  Not avoiding the camera now!

She is beautiful and apparently Alex thinks so too!

This is the main hall of the orphanage on the bottom floor.

This is a great picture of the new trophy displays.  It seems the kids are very proud of them because every time I send my camera out with the kids they come back with pictures of all the new cases and trophies.

They were playing with the music on my phone here.


I told Dimitri I wanted a picture of him smiling and he gave me a couple...a little exaggerated though.

See what I mean.  I am sure going to miss these kids.  That is the one aspect of this whole thing that I will miss...the kids!

Just watch the crowd grow around the Ipod

This is Alex avoiding the camera

Apparently they are gearing up for a phone call to America

You see how quickly they are addicted to gadgets?  She can't even look up for the picture.

Funny Kid!

Oh, I think she just figured out that she made a call!

The crowd is growing!

The boys walked us out to the van.  I finally got a picture of this guy!

See Vitaliy is trying to turn away and Dimitri just saw me with the camera.

This is how Sasha just watches me leave.  Although I think just after this shot he was mad at the driver because the driver didn't want Sasha to shut the door.  So as he turned to go through the gate and he flipped the driver off.  Yeah...there is work to be done!

This is the Walmart like store that we walked to after dinner to get food for the apartment tomorrow.  Tomorrow is General Conference so we are walking to the Church.  They will have it broadcast in English and Russian.  This store is really an "I am barely like Walmart" store. 

It rained all night and into the afternoon today.  We were supposed to go out walking this morning but we had to change plans.  I am getting used to sudden changes in my plans.

Last night was a bit difficult.  I don’t know if anyone put two and two together but that Government Shut Down would have shut down the US Embassy which would have made it impossible to leave the country with the kids.  It wasn’t the straw that broke the camel’s back last night but it was the thread that bent it pretty darn good!  I was feeling really discouraged to think that I was this close and that was going to stop me.  But, when I woke up this morning and checked the news all was well.  I was given that feeling last night but living in a constant state of “I don’t know what will happen next” is a bit challenging. 

Anyhow…I got up early (for me anyway) and starting reading a book that the sister missionaries lent to us, “Our Search For Happiness” by M. Russell Ballard.  It is a great book.  I read, exercised, showered and, because of the rain, we read until it was time to go visit the boys.  I was really excited to see them today.  I thought that the kids from the orphanage went to see that soccer game yesterday, but it is actually tomorrow.

We did a lot of talking this visit.  My most exciting news is that Vitaliy wants to change his Ukrainian first name.  Unfortunately, it is too late to change it here but we were planning on re-adopting in the US so the boys could have an American birth certificate so we can do it then and in the meantime, we will call him the name he wants.  It will be Jonathan William Golling.  I absolutely love this name for him.  I would never have even considered naming one of my kids Jonathan, but it fits and I love it.  Sasha was complaining about his name a bit but I think he was just jumping on the band wagon so we will look into that later.  We talked about birthdays, Jonathan’s being May 1st (same as Andy’s) and Sasha’s being May 31st.  My birthday and Jason’s also fall in May so it will be a busy month.  I mentioned that people back home were asking about their birthdays so I needed ideas for gifts.  We started making lists.  Of course, Sasha’s list is already really long.  I remember taking him to Walmart back in the fall.  I had to gear up for it because that kid wants everything.  I had to strategically walk down certain aisles to avoid other aisles filled with things I knew he would want.  I remember walking out of there feel exhausted.  This otta be fun!

We played cards and talked about a lot of different things.  Vitaliy still doesn’t like to play cards so I always convince one of the other boys to play with me.  Today, Dennis and Alex played with us.  We all talked and joked and had fun.  Other kids came and went and Sasha and his friends played with my phone.  Anastasia had my phone for a while and I am sure she called a friend of mine in America and used up quite a bit of money on my phone.  I checked the call log and then I checked the money left on my phone…bummer. 

Another day down.  Tomorrow is the last day of our waiting period.  The boys are officially our children on Monday!  I am very excited.  I asked Vitaliy if he was going to miss anything or anyone from school…he said no, he is ready to go.  I asked what food he will miss…he said borsch.  I told him I wasn’t very good at making it and he told me he would help me.  I didn’t need to ask Sasha those same questions because every other question out of his mouth is “When are we leaving”, “When can we stay with you in Zap”.  They are both so excited and ready to leave.  Pity…I am starting to settle in and will miss it here…..NOT!

I miss you all and pray that there will be no hiccups in all that is left to do.  I really want to bring these boys home and start on our next challenging adventure.  Love you all!!!!  Thanks for the prayers, thoughts and comments.  For those of you having a hard time leaving a comment, you have to log in to Google first and then leave a message.  Otherwise, it erases everything you just typed in.  I know this because I found that out the hard way on Erica’s blog.

Love you……Miss you!!!!!!!!!!


  1. So glad you found a walmart-like store. I didn't know how much we appreciated Walmart until we didn't have one. Sorry about the alcohol candy :) We didn't run into that but I think that a lot of Ukrainians think that alcohol is the answer to everything. Loved the picture of the kids. My son thinks that Alex has great taste in girls. Stay warm and sober!
    The Hinksons

  2. Almost done! YIPPEE! It will be good to see you all again.
    Very funny about the candy. Why give it to children??
    Conference was excellent, of course. Very reassuring and peaceful. Tonight is Stake Conference. Elder Munday is our visiting authority. Tomorrow AM is a youth morningside with him.
    What sizes are the boys? We went through a bunch of clothes and have loads of good ones. Let me know. I have girls stuff too. Send me or Garth an email.
    LOVE YA!

  3. LOL I love the candy. I wonder if we gave any such things to them. I don't like hard candy so I never tried it! :0

    Enjoy conference tomorrow! How do they do it? Surely not all 5 sessions in one day. I can't wait to see you soon!

  4. I thought the director didn't want the kids playing cards. There are so many fun games with cards. It's fun to see the pictures. Keep clicking away!
    I have that book by M. Russell Ballard, but haven't read it; now I will.
    Love the name of Jonathan. What does Sasha want to be called?
    Looking forward to your family coming over tonight. We all miss you and love you. You will enjoy conference; great as usual. Stay safe - - love you, miss you. Mom

  5. Tell the boys I'd be happy to make them some borscht! :)

  6. Is that Dennis in the photos? Wendy R has a great borscht recipe too. I think it's funny that Sasha flipped off the driver, I probably shouldn't, but I do. At least he didn't flip you off!:) Dimitri sure is a cute kid, they all are! Hope you have a great Sunday! Enjoy conference, it's fabulous, of course! So excited for you. See you soon!!

  7. It feels wrong that I am a bit jealous looking at all of the pictures of you in Zap. I think it's just because I miss being roommates and having a friend in the process with me. I am loving all of the new places you get to explore.. again, a bit jealous. But not nearly enough to wish I were there! I'm so so happy that budget things were settled and that maybe, just maybe you can be a week behind me. Tomorrow is the big day when you will get a better idea of what the rest of the trip will be - hopefully! Call when you can. Tell Lucy hello.

  8. We are breathed a sigh of relief when the govt shutdown did not happen. I had asked my friend in Ukraine if the embassy would shut down and they did not know. It was one of those 'we'll make the decision if/when it happens'. So glad you did not have to deal with that.

    I had to laugh about Anastasia calling home on your phone. Did she have a good conversation with someone? :)

    Hopefully Monday things start going quickly and you can get out of there. We can't wait until you get home where you can start doing things your way.