Saturday, July 29, 2006


A big sigh of relief to finally say this is our last day in Almaty.  Our flight leaves Sunday morning at 7:15 a.m. Kaz time.  It will be a tedious day and a little strange to leave here and arrive home the same day.  The time change is 11 hours so this could be interesting with the kids.  We are praying for a bassinet at least from Amsterdam to Memphis but there are no guarantees.  The way we have it figured is that is the leg that would be nighttime for Jonathan so if he slept for that part of the journey we would be very grateful.  We’ll survive either way. 


This morning Jonathan and I were up bright and early so he played in the little hallway in our room while I read through some of his documents.  They were all very interesting to read and will provide a good background for him when he is older.  I read through the court decision and I think I knew this but it really hit me when I was reading it; while our court date was June 26th and the judge granted our petition to adopt Jonathan, it still was subject to the 15 day appeal period.  The date when the appeal period was over and Jonathan became legally ours was July 12-my 40th birthday.  It might just have been the best birthday present ever!!! 


After we re-enacted what has become our morning routine of playing, eating breakfast, swimming and then the morning nap we had lunch at the hotel (we have learned to share) and then headed to the mountains.  We went about 10 minutes from our hotel to the Gondola that takes you up the mountain.  It really didn’t take you up very far, more like the foothills of the mountain but there were restaurants, a little zoo, play area, art gallery and souvenirs.  It was also nice and breezy so we just walked around while Jonathan napped in his stroller.  It was a nice way to spend our last day.


One thing we have sort of learned but don’t have the full story on is that Almaty is known for Apples.  Our one driver called it the Father of Apples-at least that is what we think he said.  That would also explain the apple at the top of the mountain as well as all of the bees.  Anytime you sit outside and have any kind of food-bees come buzzing by.  We’ll have to research that a little more sometime. 


Well, we are closing in on the end of our stay and plan to be in bed in a few hours to try to get some sleep before our 4:30 a.m. departure in the morning.  We have enjoyed sharing our journey with you and feel so abundantly blessed to be bringing home this beautiful little boy.  This adoption has been one miracle after another and we have learned to trust completely in Him through it all. 


Thank you and God bless you.  Jonathan will love reading this one day and your messages will be a lifelong treasure. 


DasviDaniya (goodbye)


The Drake Family