Sat/Sun, June 17-18, 2006

Preevyet!(That means hi in Russian)

Hope this finds you well.  I am slowly(and I mean slowly) starting to catch on to a few key words here.  We have decided to focus on please, thank you, Where is the bathroom etc.  We'll skip trying to learn the rest. 

I must apologize for no posts over the weekend.  Our social schedule was amazingly full and we just didn't find the time to write.  The other reason is that I couldn't come up with anything very interesting to write about but I'll try to capture the weekend in a few paragraphs. 

It continues to be very hot here but then I know it is summer and it is hot everywhere.  We have entered the phase of dreaming of things at home.  Other than our daughter, family and friends, now we dream of steak, baked potatoes, a glass of milk and air conditioning.  Yes, that is what it has come down too.  Pretty sad isn't it. 

We are counting the days and hopefully will be really counting the days and finding out Monday when our court date will be.  I'm feeling, thanks to your prayers, like we will in fact get our date and even if we don't find out on Monday we will very soon and it will be set quickly.  We'll keep you posted. 

Saturday we got to visit with Jonathan for our normal visit.  We again stayed outside the full two hours because they are banning us from the house and playroom.  I was allowed to go up and get him by myself and then take him back to his room when we were done, but Bryan had to remain downstairs.  We hope to find out what exactly is going on with that on Monday when we have Dina back.  It doesn't seem that anyone has caused any kind of rucus and we are all very thoughtful about being quiet and cleaning up the toy room so everyone seems to be a bit puzzled and frustrated.  Jonathan continues to adjust to us everyday and we really look forward to our window of time with him. 

I think I mentioned on Friday that we decided we were going to do a little entertaining on Saturday night.  We invited all of the different families that are also adopting to come over for Spaghetti.  We had a great time.  There were 8 of us and Bryan assumed the head chef position.  The other women were very impressed with his cooking but mostly that he was in charge.  We sat around and got to know each other better and laughed a lot.  It was so much fun.  There was a wedding at the Palace of Happiness which is right across from our apartment so we capped off the evening with a fireworks show!  I think the last of them left around 11:30 so we had a really good night of food and fellowship and most of all-people speaking English!!!  Nothing against foreign speaking people but it wears on you to go days without being able to communicate with anyone for so much of the day. 

Sunday was a good day.  We actually got invited to attend a small church service with some people here from an Ames, Iowa church.  I think I mentioned them before.  We had to decline though because we had made arrangments to work at the Baby House all day on Sunday.  By the way, Happy Father's Day to all of you Dads out there-particularly my Dad and Bryan's Dad.  We love you and are sorry we couldn't be with you today.  Anyway, Bryan got to spend his Father's Day without his children so we will be having a make-up day when we get home. 

Our work day was fruitful and we were proud when we had completed our mission-all without a single power tool.  Who would have thought we had it in us.  I guess that just goes to show you what you can do when you put your mind to it.  Our tools consisted of 1 pair of pruners, 2 little hedge clippers, two shovels and a small, rickety tin box that looked like a stretcher to haul sand and dirt.  We started out the day about 9:00 and stopped off at the Kaz Home Depot.....not anything like the real Home Depot to barter on some gloves and the shears.  We did pretty good and managed to get a bit of a deal on the tools. 

We spent the day pulling weeds, and let me say, the entire yard, which is very large, is very little grass and all the rest weeds.  I had big plans to do the front yard area and the side yards as well.  My plans quickly changed.  We did good to get the front yard area looking good.  We had no mower so we made the best of it and when we were done it actually looked quite good and much more inviting for the kids to play.  We managed to move sand around most of the equipment.  We got good at figuring out we could get 8 1/2 shovels full of sand in the stretcher and carry those all over the place dumping and spreading.  We finally got our groove and accomplished quite a bit.  We may do a little more this week.  We'll see. 

While we were working, the part of the trip that I had anticipated happening when we first got here happened today.  Up to this point, we only had seen Jonathan and the kids of the families that are also here with us but no other children.  The schedules when we are at the Baby House and their activities didn't allow our paths to cross.  Well, when we were working, the 3 & 4 year olds got to come outside to play.  What a heartbreaker!!!  Not because they looked unhappy or anything, actually quite the opposite but all I could do was look at these little squealing children and think of where they were and wonder who was going to love them.  I kept wondering why they were still there and why had they not been adopted.  Some of them can't be adopted because there parents won't relinquish them but there are plenty of others where that isn't the case.  They are so incredibly obedient.  There greatest thrill was when the caregiver said something to them in Russian(actually it was Kazak) and they all started screaming and running to the little tricycles up against the house.  They were so joyful.  Then the biggest treat came when they got to be sprayed with the hose.  That is when you realized, they are just like any other kid, laughing, screaming and running around having a great time.  It really got to me.  You just want to save the world and realize you can't and it breaks your heart.  One little girl fell down on the asphalt.  She started crying and she had no one to comfort her.  They just said something to her from across the parking lot and she had to soothe herself.  I don't mean to be a downer but the realization of it all it really hit me hard.  My prayer is that someday they feel the love of a parent and to have someone in this world that is in their corner. 

I did get cheered up a bit by the beautiful face of our son up in the window.  I had been glancing up all day at his room wondering if we would get lucky enough to see him and I heard the window open and my favorite caregiver was holding him up to the window so we could see him and wave to him.  He got all excited and was waving his little hands, although I think he was doing that with some assistance but we didn't care.  Helped to make Bryan's Father's Day special. 

After we finished our work we headed back to our apartment for a nap and to cool down.  We ended up going back out for dinner with our friends to meet with another mother from PA that had been in Kaz earlier for her first trip and was returning to pick her son up on Monday.  She was very excited and I got to talk to her about how it was to leave here with out him the first time.  She said it was hard but the time passed quickly in preperation for her return and she could hardly wait until Monday morning. 

Rachael is back from SC and now off to church camp.  We got to talk to her this weekend a couple of times and she is doing really well.  We miss her so much but she is being a very brave little girl.  She was proud to tell us about all of the new foods she tried on vacation, thanks to her Aunt Joy.  She got home and got to see her friend Emily and go to church with her which made her day.  Grandma and Grandpa Drake did her laundry and took her to camp where she was going to meet up with my lifelong friend's daughter for a week.  They will have a great time and another week will pass getting us closer to being home with her.  Before I left I gave her a necklace that says Mom on her half and my half has Daughter and we have been wearing those since we have been apart.  She told her Aunt that it is helping her and I haven't taken mine off either so that has been a special thing for both of us. 

Sorry this post is so sad and sappy.  It must be my mood today.  I am feeling as I have since I have been here that Bryan and I couldn't be more blessed than we are for two incredible children just as I know every parent feels for their children.  What an awesome gift-without a doubt the best ever. 

When we return in July, we will be bringing some items back with us.  One of the things that this BabyHouse needs because they have so many small children and infants is Baby Drop Vitamins and Baby Orajel.  If anyone feels like donating a bottle or tube of either, I would love to take a large supply back with us to give to the Doctors.  You can either send them to me, drop them off or give them to someone in our family as the drop off point and we will be sure we get them here. 

One last favor I guess-when this is all over I will be saving this website for Jonathan to see one day.  We have had so many beautiful posts on his Guestbook that have meant a lot to Bryan and I.  If you have been reading and have not yet posted a message, we would love for you to so we have you in his memory book.  If you have already, do it as many times as you want!  We love reading them and Jonathan will one day as well when he knows his story.

Blessings to you for a wonderful week.  We will get back to our daily postings and keep you updated on the court date.  Prayers are mighty!   Thank you for yours.  You are in ours as well. 

DohbreeDyen(good day) and Much Love!

Bryan and Maggie




Home Depot-Looks like what we have at home doesn't it??  As you can see I brought my yardwork attire.  Flips are good while weeding. 


Bryan and Ross and their wheelbarrow.  Not state of the art. We're just glad they didn't break it.  It is on its last leg.


Me, Jen from PA, Natalie from DC and Ross from Chicago.