Archive for February, 2008

Russian elections

February 26, 2008

Today we were walking around town and some people were handing out election information. They gave us some of these card/calendars with Dimitri Medvedev and Vlad Putin on them. Medvedev is pretty much the only guy on the ticket (there are 2 other irrelevant guys in contention). If you want I will bring you one back, just leave a comment.

Some thoughts on Siberia

February 24, 2008

Driving is very crazy here. I really couldn’t imagine getting behind the wheel.

There is some sort of fixation with beets. I think that beets may be the national vegetable. Dwight Shrute would be proud.

There are factories everywhere. You drive into the countryside and you see smoke stacks skyline the horizon.

The roads are not well kept, potholes are hard to avoid.

Never hand a store clerk money. Place it in the dish that sits on the store counter.

Always take your jacket off and take it to the “Cloak Room”. If you don’t every one in the restaurant will stare you down.

Potato chips aren’t a popular item here. Pringles are the only chip we have found.

There are 2-inch thresh-holds in between rooms here. We haven’t figured that one out yet.

Everyone listens to dance (club) music. The bass pounds from the cars and even in the local Subway restaurant.

Everything requires a stamp-seal. I don’t know where this comes from, but they stamp everything! We learned this from the paperwork for the adoptions.

Russia Trip 2: Birthday boy!

February 22, 2008

We celebrated our oldest son’s birthday today! He actually turns 4 tomorrow but it’s national holiday here (Man’s Day) and everything is closed till Tuesday. I think we need a Man’s Day in America! It was so amazing to watch the orphanage directors put together a special day for our son. We brought all kinds of treats in for his play group (about 15 or so kiddos) and they all sang happy birthday in the unique Russian way. He felt so special. The next few days will be long for us as we will not be able to see our sons (even though they are legally ours!). Please pray.

Russia Trip 2: The food sucks!

February 21, 2008

Today it hit me. The food here in Siberia really is not very good. A typical breakfast consists of a typical Amrican dinner, no lie. We had the best meal since we arrived today (lunch) and it was a cheesy pasta from an italian joint, you can’t mess that up. Yesterday we went to Subway and they do mess that up. The meat is basically Spam. It sucks. Sorry to complain, it is just a reality. On a different and more important note, our sons are doing amazing! We saw them earlier today and will see them tomorrow. We will celebrate our oldests 4th birthday! Please keep praying for us! we have 3 more weeks left here in the former USSR.

Russia Trip 2: Coldness

February 19, 2008

It was a BIG day for us in Siberia. We got the official “OK” from the Russian court and we became the rightful parents to 2 little boys!!!!! Freakin’ amazing. Penny has posted more HERE for those interested. As for the cultural experience here in the great frozen tundra, it’s very different. It’s cold in every way known to man. The weather is cold, the people are cold and the water is cold. I could go on but you get my point. Anyway, we have to wait 10 days before the boys are in our care for good (it’s part of the Russian process). Circle next Friday, February 29th on your calendar and pray. Pray that would be the day we get our sons. Check back for more posts.

Russia Trip 2: In Siberia

February 17, 2008

We landed in Siberia this morning at 6 AM and were greeted at the airport by our contact Yelana and driver Serge. It was great to be reunited with them. Our drive from the airport to our hotel was very interesting. Lots of snow drifts, blowing to the point of zero visibility. Add to that the fearless driving of Serge and it made for quite the ride. We got to the hotel and arranged our room the way we want it to be for the next several weeks then settled down in front of the boob-tube to catch some Russian TV. That put us to sleep (from 10 AM till 6 PM). Yes, it was that boring. We then went to eat down the street at Mick’s Patio, it’s an American style diner without the American food. Siberians like to eat slaws of all sorts (beets, cabbage, etc.) so we passed on that and ate some bread and cheese; I had some killer stroganoff, kinda tasted like moms! Anyway, we are back in the room (it’s almost 9 PM Sunday) and we are back to watching some Russian TV, this time a scary reality show is on. Much easier to follow than a drama. Tomorrow is a BIG day as we get to go to the orphanage to see our sons for the first time in almost 4 months! I’ll check in tomorrow.

Russia Trip 2: Off to Siberia

February 16, 2008

We leave for Siberia today at 9PM (9AM EST). It’s a 5 hour flight and 4 time zones away from Moscow.
Below is the weather in our temporary Siberian home. Hopefully we can stay in touch…

Russia Trip 2: Red Square

February 15, 2008

Today Penny and I took a tour of Red Square in downtown Moscow. Very cool. Penny writes about it here. It was so weird walking down the middle of a place that was displayed the army of our feared former enemy, the Soviet Union. We saw Lenin’s tomb (it was closed today), walked in St. Basil’s Cathedral (pictured), and saw an official Apple Computer “re-seller”. We also saw at the former KGB Building, interesting enough, there is a Lambo, Ferrari and Bentley dealership just across from it (pictured). Check back soon!

Our ride through Moscow

February 14, 2008

Today we had to take a ride through the city to get to our medical exam. Here is video footage of our wild ride!

Watch here

Skype us!

February 14, 2008

Screen name: geppapa@gmail.com
When: Friday
We would love to here from you all!
This is a picture from a Skype video chat with my parents and of course our dog, Grommit.