Wednesday, June 14, 2006
BabyHouse Visitation Countdown-14/14-YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It is a cool 66 degrees today in Astana and we have reached our first milestone! We have just completed our 14th day of visitation which means we can now apply for our court date tomorrow. Dina will file our papers tomorrow(Thursday) at noon and the judge will review our petition and will hopefully set our court date by Monday. That doesn't mean we go to court on Monday but we hope he will tell Dina when it will be which will mean we can start the countdown for our return home. Technically he has 10 days to establish the date and then another 5 to conduct our hearing. We are hoping for a shorter time frame than that particularly since we don't know if Saturdays and Sundays count in the "window" of days. It is all very confusing I'm sure-it is still confusing for us too. Bottom line is the sooner we know our court date the better. Most of the families here have not been getting their date much before about the 12th or 13th day after applying. We are hoping for much sooner than that. We'll see. The sooner we have our court date, the sooner the next waiting game begins and that is our 15 day "cooling off" period where if someone is going to contest the adoption this is when they would do it. It typically never happens but I guess never say never. Then another 5 days or so is what it takes to get all of the final documents done so that we can pick Jonathan back up and head to Almaty, Kazakhstan for our final appearance at the Embassy.
The good news is-once we go to court, we come HOME!!!!!!!! The bad news is Jonathan has to stay as I have mentioned. That will be very hard but we'll get through it. We've come this far. We look for our return to Astana to finally take Jonathan home to the U.S.A. to be sometime around the 3rd week of July. We are so ready for that day!!!
I think I have hit the wall today. My nerves are shot and my temper is short. I must go on a short rant because I just got out of the car and it is fresh in my mind. About the only thing nice I can say right now about the people and their driving is-well, there isn't anything. There is absolutely NO order whatsoever. Imagine, if you can 4 lanes of traffic on each side. People driving over the center double lines, people driving in your lane and if you don't like the wait or there is a car in front of you, well, just make your own lane for pete's sake. I can see the hair in peoples ears as they pass by they are so close. At first it was interesting, now it is just making me MAD!! I start my prayer vigil as soon as the car door shuts and don't stop until my feet are firmly on the ground again.
We open doors for people and they look at you like you have two heads. Bryan helped some little girls get there bike down a flight of stairs so they wouldn't fall and they looked at him like he was going to push them down and steal their bike. Stand in line like a civil person and forget about it-their will be 3 people walk right in front of you. Smile at someone-forget about that. Crazy Americans. It is the strangest thing I have ever seen. All I can think of is now I have a good example for my children when they ask me why we have to have rules. Complete and utter chaos.
On a good note, little Jonathan was really good today again. He is definitely part of us and you can tell he is really happy to see us. We played in the playroom for the full two hours and it was alot of fun. We had lots of room to play with toys, test out the slide and play in the ball pit. He isn't at all keen on the ball pit or the Jump-O-Lene. I think it is just another thing for him to get used to. He sure does like to be held. I'm not complaining. He is adorable and you just can't help but shower him with kisses. They keep putting on his new outfits that I brought and then I see then on someone else the next day. That's ok. I figure by the time we come back they won't fit him anyway so we're more than glad to share., besides, can you imagine trying to keep all of the children's laundry straight? When I arrived today they gave me a stack of his laundry to do at the apartment which is good because then we can be sure to get his things in his locker for now.
Well, Bryan is feeling a little blah today. Nothing series just not feeling the best so we'll just hang out and watch T.V. and maybe read this afternoon.
Oh, we may get to do some yardwork on Sunday when we can't see the kids. They are trying to find lawnmowers for us. Some other families also want to help. The people at the Baby House keep saying "why do you want to do that?". It is so foreign to them that someone would want to help just to help. It's funny and kind of sad all at the same time. They just aren't used to it. We might as well be helping out instead of sitting by doing nothing.
Hope all is well in your corner of the world. Thanks for letting me unload a little. I feel better. Once we are home safely I will have that aspect of the trip as a memory that I will laugh about. Certainly provides lots of stories to tell.
Love to all,
Maggie and Bryan
Jonathan's welcoming scream when we picked him up today.