We just got back from today's first visit with the child (we're not supposed to mention her name online). We'll be going back this afternoon. In the meantime, Tara's trying to catch up on her sleep. She had woken up around 5 this morning. I was able to sleep until almost 8.
The gir

I'm attaching pictures we made of Astrakhan and our room. We are staying at the Hotel Azimut in Astrakhan. They are going through major renovations right now. It's kind of funny to see the interior design mix. The lobby is decorated in Art Deco while the rooms are decorated in traditional Ru

We had a great visit with our little girl this morning. There were no observers. That happens this afternoon. Vika mentioned we should think about showing more affection in front of the observers. It's more in line with how Russians treat their kids. We're fine with that. We like kids so muc

Oh My Gosh what a difference 1 day makes! So, we have a beautiful blond-haired, blue-eyed, 2-1/2 year old girl!
First, the obvious question: "What happened to the 4 year old boy?" We don't know. After 2 trips to the Minister of Education, and two interviews, they gave us a referral fo

Where to begin… The original plan was for us to go to the Minister of Education and submit our dossier and then formally receive our referral. What really happened:Galina called the ministry this morning only to find out that they were closed in the morning supposedly because there had been a deat

After a nerve-wracking trip to the airport and getting through the airport security we finally made it to our plane. We were told that our Rep, Galina, would be flying with us. We never saw her until we were already on the plane. She was one of the last passengers on the plane, she saw us and gestur

We check out in an hour.
We got a nice free breakfast this morning, then went back to that grocery store and managed to pay the right amount for the right kind of water (still, not sparkling, which is hard to find).
Security guard work is apparently a large

Monday – 1 Oct 07 – 6:37PMzzzDRAHST-vueet-ya, DRAHST-ya, BREEV-yet ee DO-bree-dyen from Astrakhan! I just (phonetically) said "Hello, hey, hi and good afternoon" (even though it's now evening here) in Russian. I couldn't remember how to say "evening."We visited the Minist

Well, we made it to Moscow!After a long plane trip, we managed to get through passport control and customs with no problems. And all of our luggage made it!Our CHI Rep and driver were late getting to the airport and we were worried, but they did eventually show up. We got our first taste of traffic,