Friday, November 30, 2007

Did a bomb go off?

It sure looks like it did. Everything for the yard sale has pretty much taken over our house:

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Yard Sale

This Saturday we are having our Adoption Benefit Yard Sale. I can honestly say I am not looking forward to it. Yard sales can sometimes be such a headache. If it weren't for the fact that we need money to help fund our outrageously expensive adoption, then I would just pack up everything and bring it to Goodwill. I have recruited my little sister and brother to help us that day. When my sister asked what time she would need to get up that day to start setting up, I told her around 5am if not earlier. You should have seen the look she gave me! She is a teenager and enjoys her sleep. I do want to thank our friends and family that have donated items for Saturday. I hope it is a big success.

Does anyone have any advice for having a yard sale? Others have suggested selling drinks and possibly snacks. Has anyone does this? Was it worth it?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thank you for all the support. It is great to know that I am not the only who felt that way the first time they met their little one and that it is completely normal. I just am upset with myself now because I missed that day to truly spend time with him. Now I look at his pictures and I keep asking myself what was I thinking!?! He is the sweetest thing ever and my love for him grows each day. He was meant to be our son. It is wonderful that he bonded so well with Shane since he has probably seen few if any males in his lifetime. I know my time will come. Everyone warned us that the wait between trips would be so much harder than the wait to receive a referral. Boy...they were not joking! We miss him like crazy and it's only been a week since we last saw him. We do have some things to keep us busy in the next few weeks. On December 1st, we are having a yard sale to help raise some funds to bring him home. Then on December 9th, my family is planning on throwing me a baby shower. Maybe next week, I can clean up his room to take some pictures and post them on here. Right now his nursery is a mess. We have been using it to store all the packing items for the trips.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

A few pictures

Between the cold, the excitement and the exhaustion, we forgot to take pictures of just us. Here are the only ones we have. The last one is with our "blended apple juice."

1st Trip continued

Like I said in the last post, Tuesday's visit went much better. Bryson even seemed to be a different person during this visit. He has really attached to Shane and I admit that made me a little jealous, but I know my time will come. It was actually great to see him attach to Shane since there are no men at this orphanage, so he is not familiar with them. After our visit, we went back to the hotel to meet up with T & H. We then went to dinner and went to the market to get some drinks and snacks. Wednesday morning, we signed the agreement to adopt (or whatever it is called) and gave him his name: Bryson Aleksandr. At 3p, we headed off to the orphanage for our last visit. This visit was the best. We spent 2 hours with him and we had so much fun. He is really not that interested in toys, but we will change that. He is teething and enjoyed chewing on the toy cell phone we brought him. He enjoyed us building things with the blocks so he could knock them over. His favorite color appears to be yellow. He would only grab for the yellow blocks and stacking cups. He is only able to take a few steps while holding our hands. He would hold Shane's hands so tight while he walked that the top of his tiny fingers would turn white. We were able to bring him to his room that night. It was so hard to leave him there. It took me a few days to realize that he was meant to be my son and I fell in love with him all over again. I am a little biased, but he is the most adorable little boy ever. He has the most beautiful big brown eyes and extremely long eyelashes. I can't begin to tell you how many times we looked at his pictures in the hotel room and on the planes. I must say, he is quite the little picture taker. Most times he would look right at the camera when I was taking his picture.

Thursday morning we were to meet in the lobby of the hotel and we headed to the airport. We landed back in Moscow around 9:30a. We originally had a 10a appointment for our 8 doctor medical, but we we met up with one of our coordinators, she said the clinic was closed that day. She was able to get us a 4p appointment at another clinic. By the time we dropped T & H off at the international airport, drove to the Marriott and checked in, it was already noon. We had lunch and laid down for about an hour, then it was off to the doctors. The only thing I can say about the 8 doctor medical: interesting. It took almost 3 hours and we didn't get back till around 8p. We had planned to sight see that day, but because of the later doctor appointment, we didn't get to.

We did get to see snow for the first time. I can't begin to tell you how cold it was in Novo. We have never really been out of the country, so this trip was a little bit of a culture shock. Russia is very different than the US and you have to just embrace it and go with the flo. Trust me though, that is not always easy to do.

We are not really sure how long it will be in between trips. She said she will do her best to try and get us in before Christmas, but we really don't know. We will keep praying and crossing our fingers. That would be the best Christmas gift ever. If I thought waiting for a referral was hard, waiting to see him again will be even harder.

We're back

First let me apologize for not updating the blog while we were in Russia, but we never had internet service and the one time we did, we were to exhausted to use it. Where do I begin? This was an exhausting trip to say the least. We left Florida on Saturday and arrived in Moscow Sunday around noon. We then found out that our flight to Novosibirsk was not leaving till 10:30p that night. We decided to check into a hotel near the airport to get a few hours of rest, to shower and to eat. We were also traveling with another family whom we met in the lobby of the hotel later that night. It was great traveling with another family. It helps make the trip much easier and we really enjoyed their company. This is their second adoption, so they were a little experienced which helped. Around 7:30p we were off to the domestic airport in Moscow and on our way to Novosibirsk. We landed in Novo around 5:30a on Monday where we were met by our driver and taken to the hotel. This was not the greatest hotel, but apparently the Sibir was overbooked. We had enough time to shower, change, get some breakfast, then it was off to the MOE. Needless to say, we were so exhausted. We barely got any sleep on the planes the previous two nights. Our baby was in a different orphanage than the other couple, so we got to visit him first. We arrived around 12:30p and talked with the pediatrician for about 20 minutes, then in walks a lady with Bryson in her arms. Shane took him while I finished writing notes, then we were led into the music room. This room was very stuffy and bright, but we sat down on the rug and started playing. The first day was rough for me. I had completely fallen in love and bonded with his referral picture. I had such high expectations that he would walk in the room and I would feel those same emotions, but I didn't which was very upsetting. I didn't feel like I bonded or connected with him. Shane adored him and he favored Shane as well. We played for about 30 minutes when he started getting hungry. They took him and fed him, changed him into something cooler and brought him back to us. By now he was ready for a nap, so we only played with him for about 20 minutes more. On the ride back to the hotel, I was having so many mixed emotions. I was really upset over the whole situation. The whole experience felt emotionally draining. When we got back to the hotel, we were so exhausted and stresses so we laid down. We woke up later that night and called both of our mothers. They were really great in helping me calm down. After the phone conversations, we went back to bed and didn't wake up till 6a on Tuesday.

T & H (the other couple), knocked on door that morning to see how our first visit went. I was explaining to them how I felt and they said that was normal. It made me feel a little better to hear that. We all decided to go get some breakfast. After breakfast, we went to the coffee shop that was across from our hotel to kill some time since they were not leaving till 12:30p and we were not leaving till 3p. I have a funny story about juice at this coffee shop. When we were in there on Monday morning, we ordered apple juice and the girl understood and brought us apple juice. When we were in here Tuesday, we asked for apple juice again (a different girl this time). I guess she didn't really understand us because she put green apples in a blender and made it into juice. Wow was it bitter. Needless to say, we never ordered apple juice here again. After breakfast, Shane and I went back to our room and talked more about Monday's visit. I agreed that I would go there with a positive and optimistic attitude. When we got to the orphanage, they put us in a different room which looked to be a play room and thankfully it was much cooler in this room. We visited with him for about 1 1/2 hours and the visit went much better today. I guess I just needed some sleep and to clear my head. By the end of the visit, we knew he was ours.

Friday, November 9, 2007

We are outta here

We are outta here in the morning. It will be a long two days of traveling. We are hoping to update our blog while we are there. I'm starting to get excited, but not looking forward to all the planes we will be on. This will be our last post because I really have to finish packing. Wish us luck!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

The weather

Sorry for the lacking of posting over the past week, but we have been pretty busy. I didn't want to do a countdown this time because I didn't want to jinx this trip. I can't believe we leave in 2 days. We have done all the last minute shopping, but I haven't begun to pack yet. The nerves are starting to set in a little. We are also freaking out about the weather in Novosibirsk while we are there. I know it will be very warm indoors, but outside is a whole different story. We are true Floridians. We have never seen snow. Though Shane doesn't mind the cold (Florida cold that is), I am always cold! Here is the forecasted weather for Novo:
Sun 11/11 (we will be in Moscow) - PM snow showers - high 29/low 28
Mon 11/12 - partly cloudy - high 17/low 7
Tues 11/12 - mostly cloudy - high 18/low 7
Wed 11/13 - snow shower - high 24/low 7
Thurs 11/15 - scattered snow showers - high 24/low 17
Fri 11/16 (we will be in Moscow) - rain/snow - high 32/low 27

Thursday, November 1, 2007

New travel dates

We received new travel dates. We are keeping our fingers crossed that they don't get changed (again). We will be leaving Florida on Saturday 11/10 and come back on Friday 11/16.

I hope everyone had a great Halloween!