Thursday, May 26, 2011

Kaylee's first photo shoot

I did a short impromptu photo shoot with Kaylee yesterday and wanted to share the pictures. It was so hard to pick my favorites, so many turned out really cute. 

 It really is hard to pick a favorite, but I really like this one, probably just because she looks like a baby here and really, she does act like a baby. 

Kaylee is doing really well. She really is a very fast learner. I figured out today how to get her to crawl. Actually it kind of was my friend Lindsay's idea, she said the only way she will be able to get Ana to do anything is with food, so it got me thinking. I put a gerber puff a few feet in front of Kaylee and had her crawl to it. I know, it sounds like something you do for a dog, but you know what, it worked. We did this for about 15 minutes. And she was even crawling with her head up, though I think she doesn't have very good muscle control of her legs with her head up, strange how that works. She did more of a hop like a rabbit than a crawl, but she was trying so hard.

We also worked on walking today. I would stand her up against the couch and hold out my hands for her to walk to me. Normally when I do this she just falls forward, but today she actually took a few steps.

For the first couple of days back home, things were very difficult and I wondered why we adopted her, not that I think we shouldn't have, but that I wondered what I really had to offer her that the orphanage couldn't have or didn't. I pretty much felt like I was only meeting her physical needs. But now that I see how smart she is and how much she truly wants to learn, my view has completely changed. She is already thriving and doing so much better than she was before.

Kaylee has started to scream and cry unless I am holding her or sitting on the floor next to her or doing something directly with her. It completely baffles me as to why she does this. She has sat in a crib for the last 2 years, why would she be so needy now. It does frustrate me, but I am trying really hard to be patient. I have cooked dinner while wearing her on my back in a sling. She seems to be happy with that. I really hope this phase doesn't last too long. If only I knew what she was thinking and feeling.

She's a true American now, eating a popsicle. This was her second popsicle since coming home and she loves it. Today, she actually held the popsicle while eating it, and this is a huge thing. I think she must have some sort of sensory thing with holding stuff while eating or maybe it is so ground in her to not touch her food. Usually she cries when I hand her something, but this time she took the stick and started sucking away.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Pictures from our trip home

Here are some pictures from our journey back home.

Feeding Kaylee (she is on the floor), right before our near disaster (keep reading :)
 We were so blessed to have our tickets changed, without even asking, to the bulkhead section. They had these really cool basinets, it really helped, both Justus and Kaylee were able to take naps. 
 We met a family who are missionaries to Russia. They are from our same town and were on their way home for a visit. We found out they even go to the same church as some of our friends. They had 5 children and they all loved Kaylee and played and played with her. We've never heard her laugh so hard. 
 Very sleep, but still happy Kaylee.

Our homecoming. We were met by a huge group of friends. 
I love this picture, and it has nothing to do with my head being cut off :), I love it, because it captures the moment, with Malika being nervous and hiding behind me. Looking at this picture, now I see why people smile when they see me and say " you have your hands full". Really?

 Our friends who greeted us. We feel so loved. 
 Malika meeting her Grammy, they were so happy to finally be re-united.
 Kaylee so happy with our friend Linda. 
 She was a trooper to meet all of our friends and be passed around to all those that have been in this journey with us. Poor thing, she was so exhausted though. 

In the carseat for the first time after our long, long day. She is doing amazing with it
Malika in her new position in the back row. I thought she would have a hard time, but she loves it.

Kaylee is so smart, she is picking things up so quickly, I am completely amazed by her. While we were still in Ukraine, I worked with her on putting food in her mouth, and after only a handful of times teaching her, she figured out how to do it. This has back fired on me though, because now she puts everything in her mouth and tries to eat it. The worst thing that happened was while we were on the airplane. We were in the bulkhead section, so we had a lot of room at our feet, so I put her on the floor to play, she picked something up and ate it, but I didn't see her do it, so I didnt know what she put in her mouth. She started to gag, she has done this many times, so I wasn't worried, thinking she ate some food we dropped, so I gave her something to drink, but that didn't work. I put my finger in her mouth but didn't feel anything, so I thought maybe it was a hair, since that has happened to Justus. I gave her more to drink, but she wouldn't drink and was having an even harder time, so I stuck my finger in her mouth again, this time further in her throat and felt something. This really scared me, I wasn't sure what to do, but the momma part of me took over. I turned her over and upside down and stuck my finger into her throat, and thankfully pulled out a piece of plastic covered in blood. It scared me so bad, I was shaking and crying. She was crying too, so I just held her, she stared into my eyes. This was probably our first real "bonding" moment. She looked at me with what seemed like gratitude, I think maybe she knew I just saved her life. We have been very careful to try to keep a closer watch on her now, even Malika will pick things up around her to make sure she doesn't put anything in her mouth.

She has also learned to crawl, except she puts her head down and rubs it across the floor as she crawls. My guess is that her head is too heavy to crawl with it up. My mom said I crawled that way too, I guess I also had a big head :).

Kaylee did the most amazing things today. I kept telling her how mart she was. I started working with her on drinking from a straw. We bought a special sippy cup that is great for special needs kids. It is like a juice box, so if you squeeze it, something comes out of it. When I first used it, she didn't like the way it felt in her mouth and would not wrap her mouth around it and instead just let the water fall out of her mouth. We tried it again two or three more times, I knew she would get it, it just would take time. I had no idea she would get it so fast. She has learned to suck out of it and hold it on her own. She is absolutely amazing.

Malika decided to feed Kaylee on her own. I was in the kitchen and she said she was feeding Kaylee, I looked over to a very messy girl. 
 Kaylee drinking out of her sippy cup. She was so proud of herself.

The other thing she did was sign more, all on her own. We have been trying to get her to sign more every time she is eating, because she is very impatient and screams when she wants more, even if she still has a mouth full of food. Usually i say more, while making the sign and then make her hands sign it. Normally she screams again and then pulls her hands back. Today, she started making my hands sign more on her own, then once she did it completely on her own. I was so happy and surprised and excited. I called Josh over, but of course like any child, she wouldn't do it again when I wanted her to.

I put Kaylee's hair up in a ponytail, and then Malika wanted hers up that way too. Malika loves Kaylee so much and talks all day long about how she is her sister and that she is going to live with us now. 

I wrote this two days ago and now Kaylee seems to have taken a step back. She is refusing to do any of those things I said she could do. She won't drink out of the sippy anymore and is even refusing to drink out of the bottle, I tried to give her something to drink from a spoon, but she didn't like that at all.

I am trying to just be patient with her, since she has only been with us for 1 week and lived in an orphanage for 2 years. I know it is a process, but it is frustrating when one day she is doing great and the next not so great. Today was a really hard day, but I am hopeful that tomorrow will be better. One good thing, I can tell she is starting to bond with me, because she cries when I leave the room.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

We are home!!

We just got home last night (friday) after a really long day. Everyone did really well, considering we were up and flying for over 24 hours. Not too many melt downs.

Kaylee did wonderful. She is still sleeping now. I can't say the same for Malika and Justus, they have been awake since 1 in the morning, I got up with Justus to feed him and Malika comes to the top of the stairs and says "good morning, Mommy", so sweet.

It is really good being at home.

I will write more later and post some pictures, I just wanted to let everyone know we made it safe.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Ok, so I have had a secret that I have kept for a few months, but now that our adoption is complete I am ready to reveal it.

I am pregnant!

I know, you must be thinking we are out of our minds. Probably you are right :)  No, this is not an accident, nor was it planned. We love children and know that God also loves children and we want to trust our family size to God. If we took it into our own hands, we may very well miss out on the things God has in store for us.

What does this mean for Kaylee? Will it change anything?
It means she will be a big sister. No, it will not change the fact that she is still our daughter and we will still love her as our daughter.

What about being so busy with Kaylee's needs?
We will take one day at a time, but I will definitely not put her aside, because I believe in her and I believe in giving her all that I can to help her become all that God wants her to be.

Does this mean we won't adopt again?
We want to adopt again, and believe we will.

Here is a picture of me today with baby number 4! at about 20 weeks

Today, we finished up all of our final paperwork. We are officially able to take Kaylee out of the country. We weren't sure on the timing, so we scheduled our flights for friday instead of thursday, just in case. We will be arriving at home at 5:30, if anyone wants to meet us at the airport. I honestly can't promise when we will be able to get out or have people over, with the many doctor appointments we will have, and we really want to just take the first few weeks to bond with Kaylee and get back to a normal life. So, if you are dying to meet her or see us, you should probably just come to the airport. I hope I don't come across as rude, to not invite people over, but we have been away for so long and would really like to get back into a routine with the kids and establish one with Kaylee. Please feel free to call though, if I do not answer right away, I will definitely call back. And who knows, maybe I will be bored and want people over :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Life outside

We have had Kaylee for 5 days now. It feels like she has been a part of our family forever. Sometimes I forget that we just took her out of an orphanage, like today at the grocery store. She was in a stroller and started screaming, I knew she was tired and just ignored it. Of course, everyone else did not ignore it, and finally I started to realize just how loud she was when I noticed all the stares. I bent down and covered her mouth with my hand and said "shhh", thinking she would be ok. Her screams got louder and I could tell she was about to cry, I picked her up and she was fine. I just forgot that she has lived her whole life in an orphanage and has only seen the four walls in her room and maybe occasionally the hall way until we arrived. So, for her to go to a grocery store and not see anyone or anything familiar was probably really terrifying to her. Poor baby.

Things have been going amazingly well with Kaylee. Like I said, she really does feel as though she has always been with us. Things are going even better than I imagined. She doesn't have any "orphanage behaviors" that I can tell. She does scream some, but I think that is just her way of communicating, since she doesn't know of any other way. She doesn't scream as much since being with us. She loves Malika and Justus, and they love her. All of my worries with Justus were for nothing. He loves her. They all act like brother and sisters already, even having the occasional fight. 

Our train ride into Kiev went so much better than the last one. There was AC on this one. I think we made the right move to take the evening train, the kids slept for the last half of it. 

Things have been a little difficult here in Kiev. We are all ready to come home, and I know it is only a few more days, but we are quite homesick. We have switched apartments since coming here, the first we only stayed at one night, because of the cost, no internet, and it was far away from everything we would need. So, we switched to a new one, which seemed much better at first, then we realized things don't work properly here or are broken and it is so dirty it is disgusting. You will thank me for not going into details :). It has internet and it is in a wonderful part of town, close to everything we need, so we are managing. I am trying not to complain too much, and that is why it has taken me so long to actually write a post, I just didn't want to complain too much. 

Today we had our first embassy appointment. The appointment went really well, and we even met another Reece's Rainbow family, the Hinz Family, they were so sweet, and like us, they brought their two biological children with them. They have adopted two children, Dusty and Sonia. When I saw the kids, I thought they were maybe 2 or 3, but no, they are 5 and 6. I am just amazed when I see children who are so neglected they look several years younger than what they truly are. I am so glad for these babies to be adopted by a loving family who will truly care and love them to health. Please pray for them, especially for Dusty. They said if you patted his belly, it sounded like a watermelon. I felt his belly and I have never felt anything like it before. And you could even feel his hip bones. The embassy doctor wasn't so kind to them and even said Dusty would not live long. Makes me angry that a doctor would barely look at him and make some comment like that, when God is the author of life and decides that. 

This evening, we met another Reece's Rainbow family, the Cox family. They actually stopped us on the street, because they saw Kaylee. I love getting to meet other RR families, even if we have nothing in common, adopting special needs kids draws us together. It is a special kind of bond.

I have figured out why Kaylee cried that first night after dinner when I put her on the floor, she loves food. I think it is funny and sad all at the same time, even if I know she has eaten enough and can't be hungry, she still wants food and cries big huge tears, and might I say, sounds pathetic. Makes me almost feel sorry for her and give her more food. She is ok after she has been distracted, or Josh brought these Mum-mum rice cake things for babies, if I give her one, she is ok with that, and I imagine it has virtually no calories. So, I have a theory about why she spit up while in the orphanage, since she hasn't spit up since we got her. I bet she cried after they fed her and felt sorry for her or thought she was still hungry and fed her more until she was over-fed. Of course, this is just a theory, so who knows. She is quite chunky, so she definitely was fed. Makes me that much  more grateful for good nannies when I see children like Dusty who looks malnourished. 

Kaylee loves food and did not seem too picky about what she ate, until we tried gerber baby foods. Two days ago, she loved it, now she turns her head away, probably knowing that our food not only smells better, but tastes better. She has eaten everything I have given her even if it is a McDonalds hamburger, she was starving though. I brought a jar of baby food to the embassy with us and she refused to eat it, but I know she was still hungry, and of course I felt sorry for her. Hey, I wouldn't eat it either. :) I promise, it won't become a habit. 

Here is a video of Justus feeding Kaylee his dinner. I love to watch her eat. 

Friday, May 13, 2011

One orphan less, part 2

I am too tired to write much, but I just wanted to finish my post since I said I would.

Both Kaylee and Justus slept for about 3 hours, Malika fell asleep too for about an hour. After nap we went into town to get a new Internet card for the phone, we joked about it running out the day before we left here, and it really did. Oh well, it is only about $6.

We stopped at the park on the way home. Kaylee was doing so well. She didn't scream the whole time we were out. She kept looking around. This is probably the first time she has been outside the orphanage, other than our trip to the passport office.

We fed the dogs at the park. There are stray dogs everywhere around here, the dogs just roam around all over and run in packs, we usually see about 6 or so laying by the road when we go to the store. We have been saving our food instead of throwing it away to feed them, kind of like feeding the ducks :)

The kids made a friend at the park, a little boy about Malika's age. He blew bubbles and they all chased them.

After that, we went back home and made dinner. Kaylee did really well and ate, but then we put her on the floor to play and she cried a very shrill cry. I didn't even think she knew how to cry loud, I bet she was saving it :). Anyway, I don't know what was wrong, but she finally calmed down.

She went to bed pretty well. We didn't have any trouble with her, except I was afraid she would crawl off the bed, since one side is open.

Malika absolutely loves her, they played together tonight before bed. I will try to post a video when we get to Kiev.

Tomorrow afternoon we are getting on a train to go to Kiev, please pray for us, the train ride here was awful, it was so hot and miserable, so I'm hoping for a better trip this time.

One Orphan Less!

Today was Gotcha Day! The day when we can finally take Kaylee out of the orphanage forever. We have been waiting for this day for months. 

I can't believe she is finally ours and we don't have to return her. 

This morning started with an early wake-up call, so sweetly by Justus at 5 am. Ok, so it wasn't really sweet, but nonetheless we were awake.  Then, a little later, Malika wakes and the first thing she said was, "mommy, I so excited today". Then, of course she started to say "3 days and we get Kaylee". She is too funny. She has been so excited and asked all morning until we left if she could put her shoes on to get Kaylee.

We left the house at 9:15 to meet Marina at the orphanage. When we got there, it felt a little strange just knowing this is truly the last time we will be there. We met up with Marina, who went with us to take our gifts of boxes of chocolate and wine to the director, doctor and lawyer. Then we went to Kaylee's class to pick her up. It didn't go at all like I expected. They handed her to me still in her clothes and asked if today was the day we were taking her. I think I expected her to be handed over without clothes or for them to dress her. We dressed her in her "gotcha day" outfit with matching bow. She looked so cute. We then said bye to the nannies and took a few pictures. They were so sweet. I don't know if they will miss her, but they seemed truly grateful for us, probably knowing this is her only chance at a normal life. It was bittersweet. I didn't think I would cry, but I did. I thought I would be so happy to just get out of there, but these ladies and this routine have been our life for the past two months, it is hard to not feel a little sad to say bye (I am definitely more happy than sad though :). 

After we took her out, we walked over to the sandbox to leave our sand toys, since we don't have room to take them home. Justus was confused and had no idea what was going on (probably still doesn't. As soon as he can talk good, I bet he will ask when we are taking her back :). He wanted to stay and play, so we did for a little bit. Then it was time to leave for good. We walked out the gates, never to return. 

After getting home, the first thing we did was give Kaylee a bath. She loved it. 

Then, the kids ate a snack, played some, then ate lunch. Kaylee did pretty well with lunch, but didnt seem to like snack. I don't know what she has been eating or what her schedule is like, so I'm having to figure it out as we go. I think it would be a bit easier if I knew. I asked several times, but wasn't told much. Twice I went in as she was being fed something from a bottle, it looked like cabbage and milk, because it was a milky, greenish, brownish substance. Anyway, I really have no clue if she has ever eaten anything solid. So, for snack, I mashed up an apple. She ate it, but cried after. Lunch was much better, I mashed up macaroni and cheese with carrots and she seemed to love it. While she was eating, Nina our landlord, who also cooks at the orphanage came up. She tried to tell us that carrots are bad for them (when we first came they said all down syndrome children are not allowed to eat red foods), anyway, I just pretended to not understand :), because I think that is just the craziest thing I have ever heard. 

After lunch, they played a while. She didn't cry this time. So far, things are going well. It was a little difficult when she cried, because nothing I did made it better. But, thankfully that didn't last long. 

I was worried about sleeping time, but nap was so easy. There is a crib here, with just 3 sides up, against the bed. I put her in it, while I put Justus to sleep, fully expecting to have to rock her or walk with her, but she just fell asleep on her own. She played for about a minute, then laid down and went to sleep on her own. She will by far be our best sleeper. 

To be continued...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

It's Official

Kaylee is officially a Thumann!

This morning we went to the courthouse to pick up the court decree for our adoption. Then we had to take it to change her birth certificate, apply for a passport and close out her bank account.

It all went pretty fast. We took Kaylee with us for the passport part, but the rest we just went on our own with Marina, since it is a lot of waiting.

When we went to close out the bank account, the bank was full of people, we later found out they were all there waiting to pay utility bills and have to wait several hours, because they are very slow. Anyway, after seeing how crowded and busy it was, Marina went to a separate part of the bank and called someone in the back, a lady came out immediately and worked quickly for us, because Marina gave her a box of chocolates. She explained to us that people around here will not accomplish things unless you give them a gift, then they work quickly. I was surprised at how easily they can be bought, this box of chocolates was probably no more than $5. I can only imagine what would happen if it were like this in the US, I think it would be disastrous and turn into who can by the best gift or pay the most. I know this does sometimes happen, but I am glad it is not the case for most things.

Anyway, if you are wondering about the bank account, we were told it is set up for orphans with special needs and set aside for if they have medical needs or one day when they are moved to an institution to care for them. I don't know about other orphanages, but the director at this orphanage is very honest, Marina told us if not for her the children would not have the amount they do in their accounts. The money that is withdrawn is donated back to the orphanage, we are told it is split up into the other childrens accounts.

We still do not have Kaylee with us, it is strange that she is ours and that we even signed her out, but still do not have her. We are planning on taking her out on Friday and them going to Kiev on Saturday. Her passport should be ready on Tuesday, which is also the day that we will start our appointment with the embassy to get her visa. This will take two days, so we are planning on coming home next Thursday if all goes as planned.

The Haglers took Sasha and Ana out of the orphanage today and are now on a train headed to Kiev. It is sad to see them leave, but I am so excited for them to see their journey coming to an end and starting their new life with 4 children. They are planning on going home Saturday, pray for them that the children will do well traveling.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Sharing, screaming and bottle feeding

The last few days have been good, but very slow going. We are very ready for our time here to be over. Only two more days until we can start the paperwork process to get Kaylee's passport. Pray that we can finish all of that in one day and that it will truly only take 4 days to get it back.

Malika says everyday "only 3 more days and we can bring Kaylee home", I don't know why she is stuck on the 3 days, but it is too cute. I think she is very anxious to have her home as her sister. We tried out the bottle this morning to see if she could drink out of it (she can) and Malika was so excited to be able to hold her and give her the bottle.

I'm afraid Justus isn't going to be quite so excited to take her home. He is so happy to go to the orphanage to see her, he runs straight to her class and says "Kay-ee, Kay-ee", but I think he is also relieved to take her back. We tried so hard to get a cute picture of them together this morning, but don't be fooled, even though Justus is smiling, he doesn't want to sit next to Kaylee, and just before the picture, he was hitting her. He is usually so sweet, except when it comes to Kaylee. I think he is realizing that he will have to share me. Poor little guy. I think we are all going to have a hard time for a little while after bringing her home.

I think we are making good progress with Kaylee. She has started to come to me when we are playing on the ground (yes, we are breaking the rules), and she wants to give me hugs. This morning, when I handed her back to a nanny, she even tried to come back to me. I am encouraged that she is bonding sooner than I expected.

Now, if only she would stop screaming. I don't know if it is a DS thing or an orphanage thing, but Kaylee screams. Not everytime we have her, but more often than not. I was trying to figure out why, but my conclusion is that either she wants something, is tired, overstimulated, doesn't like something, wants to do something different or just wants my attention. So, yeah, my conclusion isn't much of a conclusion. One day, I thought we would try to break it and I said "no scream" and tapped her mouth, so she understood what I meant, after like the 30th time, I tired of it and decided we would work on this later. I even tried screaming myself, and then say " no scream", but that didn't work either. Oh yeah, and when she does scream, sometimes it's as often as every 5 seconds. I hope it is something she will stop soon on her own, otherwise we wont be going many places. At least not anywhere she has to be quiet.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Advice on crawling

I need some advice on crawling, if any of you might know the answer.

Kaylee doesn't crawl, but she does this scoot thing on her bottom. Her right leg is straight, and her left leg is bent, she uses that leg to move herself around and she moves sometimes in a straight line and sometimes in wide circles, but she always gets to where she wants to go.

I had read somewhere that true crawling is important for brain growth, so I have been working on her with it. She is a very fast learner and can crawl on hands and knees, but only if I make her.

So, my question is, is this important or should I not worry about it and work more on walking than crawling.

She seems to be about 10-12 months old developmentally.

I know everyone would have their opinion about this, so if you have experience with this or can find any information on this, please let me know.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Math Problem

From Josh again...

What do you get when you add five adults plus boredom? A plastic deer figurine wrapped in pipe cleaners. Here is the "mathematical proof":

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

She feels like ours now

Today we took our own clothes for Kaylee. She looked so cute and really felt like she was ours. I just want to take her home now. It has become increasingly harder to go to the orphanage everyday, and it has nothing to do with the orphanage so much, just that we are tired of going and just want to go home and start our "new" life.

Really, I just cant wait to go home and be a mom to my children and learn how to take care of three kids. I have been thinking about how in the world I am going to go grocery shopping with three kids, one who can't walk, one who I don't trust to walk by himself and one who doesn't want to walk. Probably Kroger will be the only way to go, since they have grocery carts that hold 4 children, or send Josh. It would be wonderful if someone would do all my grocery shopping for me, of course then I would probably complain about how much they spent. :)

Anyway, today went mostly well. Justus threw up all over me, the chair, the floor and Malika's blanket. And it wasn't just a little bit. Poor little guy, I don't know if he is sick or if it was just a one time thing. He is sleeping now. I really hope he is not sick. Please pray for him.

One week from today and our "10" day wait will be up! So excited, maybe in two weeks we will be coming home.

(if anyone at home is wondering what size Kaylee is, she fits perfectly in 12 months, but could probably fit in 18 month, except for the length.)

Monday, May 2, 2011

Her name

Why we chose Kaylee:

When we first decided to adopt Kaylee, we thought her name was Priscilla, but then we came to realize that was just the name Reece's Rainbow used and that her real name was Irina. Both Josh and I wanted to keep this as her name since it would be the one thing she can keep from her past. It was her name and we didn't want to change it. So we sought to come up with a middle name that would go with Irina. I found many I liked, but Josh never liked any of them. One night we went to Barnes and Nobles to look at baby name books to come up with one. We both wrote several down, but neither of us liked the other's names, except we had one in common- Kaylee. But we both agreed we liked it too much to use just as a middle name, so we decided we would save it.

We still hadn't come up with a name when we arrived in Ukraine and found out that we had to know what we wanted to name her the same day we met her. I told Josh he could name her, since he didn't like anything I came up with. He decided on Kaylee Irina, since many people mis-pronounced Irina and we both liked Kaylee. I wasn't sure about taking her name away, and was surprised Josh wanted to change her first name, because he was adamant about keeping her first name the same.

We also found out that she isn't called Irina, but that they either call her Ira (ee-ra), or by her last name, so that made it easier to change it.

Kaylee means "pure", and Irina means "peace".

During court we found out before she was named Irina, her name was Katerina. That is what they named her in the hospital. And then somehow between the time she was in the hospital and when she went to the orphanage, it was changed.

The really awesome part is, I looked up Katerina and it comes from the same name that Kaylee comes from. They are both forms of Katherine and they both mean pure. I think it was meant to be.

She does know her name is Kaylee now, and does look our way when we say it.

Life goes on

It's been a few days since I've written, so I guess it is about time I should update the blog. I actually did write a post a couple days ago, but then I accidentally deleted it and didn't want to take the time to re-write it. It is probably a good thing I didn't post it, because I had written it more out of guilt and i didn't write the truth about what was going on here.

I have been feeling guilty because I was so concerned with all that was going on here and wanting to go home so badly, all because I just don't want to be here anymore or visit the orphanage or eat the food. All the while people at home are suffering and going through huge devastation because of all the tornados last week. Our house and our family are fine, though I haven't heard from all of our friends. The last I heard, the death toll was up to 340 and there are still people missing. And most of our friends haven't even been able to get on the Internet, because they have been without power since last Wednesday.

Anyway, I've just felt selfish, because life is still going on here, and things are relatively fine, but I have still been complaining. 

I should have been rejoicing when the judge granted us permission to be Kaylee's parents, but I didn't (well, momentarily I was happy), but then I think the stress of it all really got to me. And then we found out we would have to wait even longer here before coming home. Instead of the 10 day wait, it would be 12 days and then after the wait is when we apply for her passport, which takes about 5 business days. So instead of the wait being up on a Monday, it will be up on Wednesday, which means we will have to be here about a week longer due to the weekend.

Even though we went to court and the judge said we are to be her parents, things go on as they did before. Nothing has really changed, except that now we know we get to bring her home instead of being uncertain. I am definitely rejoicing over that. Court was so hard on me emotionally, I thought for sure they were going to say no about three times. Our facilitator was even nervous. There was a witness sitting next to the judge, they are supposed to be silent, but this one was not. He was trying to convince the judge that Kaylee was not healthy enough to travel on an airplane. Then at one point the judge asked the social worker about her age, he thought she was too young to be adopted. That she wasn't available long enough for a Ukrainian family to adopt. They are supposed to be listed for a year for ukrainians before being available outside of Ukraine, and for some reason she wasn't available for adoption until she was several months old. The social worker said that no one has been interested in her, only us, so it would be in her best interest to be adopted by us. Thank the Lord this convinced the judge.

Things have not changed much, we still visit Kaylee twice a day. We did go to the Ukrainian circus this weekend. It was interesting, my first thought was "there are children here", the women were hardly dressed. It opened with a couple on an acrobat ring thing, I would say that because of what the woman was wearing and what they were doing would have made it at least rated R if it were a movie. I was quite embarrassed having brought our children, and this place was a family thing, it was full of children. Anyway, it did get a bit better. Justus loved it, Malika did not, because it was very loud, she wanted to go home. 

After it was over, we went to eat at McDonald's. It tasted so good while eating it, but then I felt sick after, probably because I haven't eaten fried food in the past 5 weeks. It was so nice being able to get out and do something different. I think we will try to go into town again next weekend too.

I will write another post soon about her name, I have something really interesting to share about that.