Friday, October 24, 2008

Happy Birthday Tatiana!!

I can't believe it's Friday already!  Tomorrow Rhonda and I jump on the big tin bird to head back to the good ole' U.S. of A.  I am NOT looking forward to the flight.

We went back to Scary Tatiana's office today, but this time the "official door" was re-opened (it's been closed due to construction) and we got to take the lift!  That's elevator in our native tongue. Imagine a small box that jolts on the start and stop - enough to make the most brave person shudder.  So first bonus was the elevator, 2nd bonus was I didn't have to go in the office.  Rhonda, Kate (my translator) and I waited in the hallway while Sergei delivered the big hot documents.  So now it's officially, official!  I have signed my intent to adopt little T and the paperwork is filed.

From there we departed on our "small excursion".  Translation:  A 3 hour tour.  It was great to see the city - and I swear I'll upload some pictures when I get home on my own computer.  The city is much like any big city, crowded and they use every inch of space.  Because Vladivostok is the former home of the Russian Naval Fleet - they have a great bay.  There's a wonderful memorial to the Russian men lost in WWII and lots of ships.  

We had to purchase the customary Russian gifts:  Matroiska dolls, Vodka and cavier.  What a combo!  And we also ate our first meal outside the Vlad Motor Inn - bilini's (think crepe with great filling) in a cafe.  So minus the furry hat (sorry Charlotta Cum Laude) we've hit almost all of our Russian milestones.  Next time.... next time.

Finally it was off to the baby home to see Tatiana on her birthday.  She was a little overwhelmed again for about the first 5 minutes.  I think these children are so used to their routine and the little room that they live their lives in, that a change can be scary.  After she warmed up - it was giggles, smiles and LALALA (her version of a song, I am sure).  Very funny for me as this is also Emma and Katie Ginther's favorite word.  I am telling you, she's going to fit in well!  She and Emma are only about 1.5 months apart in age.  It will be great for her to have so many built in buddies!!

I gave Tatiana a bear from Build-a-Bear for her birthday.  I recorded my voice so she can listen to me while I am gone.  We also bought some yogurt, apple juice and cookies for her group to have for her birthday celebration.  She also got a balloon that said Happy Birthday and my coordinator and his wife (Ivan and Luba) gave her two bunnies joined at the hands.  I left the caretakers two disposable cameras to take pictures during my wait and also a photo album of me, my parents, our home, Bernie (daycare!), and all her new cousins.   And I got a present too for Tatiana's birthday!  Rhonda gave me the best necklace that says "mama" in Russian.... it's wonderful.  The best.

Tonight we are dining once again in the Vlad Inn.  We had our dinner party minus Sara and Steven tonight (we miss you) but always good to hang with Heidi and Mike, who keep us in stitches.  Now we are listening to the live entertainment -- a singer/karaoke type band.  They're actually really good!

Paka from Vladivostok!!


Pamela said...

What a trip! Tatiana had quite the birthday! Just think how her life has changed.

Have a safe trip back! I can't wait to see the pictures.

Suzy said...

I feel much better now....
Have a safe trip back. I know it will be sad to leave her but we'll keep you busy back here so the time flies by!

The McLaughlin Family said...

I am so happy for you again. I read your post to my mom this morning. The part about the necklace made me tear up. What an amazing trip.

Talk to you soon:)

Nancy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nancy said...

I'm so happy that you got to be with little T for her birthday!


Charlotte in Pa said...

Happy Birthday, Tatiana! Have a safe trip back, Amy. Maybe by then I'll have forgiven you for no furry Russian hat pictures. :-) Can't wait to chat and catch up!!

Anonymous said...

First to introduce myself, I am Heidi's Mother, and have been following along with Heidi, your journey to Tatiana, I am so happy for you.....
Perhaps someday Tatiana and our little Bradyn could meet, I'm sure you and Heidi & Mike will always have a special bond.
Have a safe flight home.
I'll be watching for the pictures too. What a treat to have gotten to celebrate your daughters birthday with her..
Good luck

Tamara said...

Happy, happy Birthday, Tatiana! You get the best present - Amy as your Mama! Have a very safe journey back and I'll look forward to catching up with you SOON! Paka, hugs and love, Tamara

Nichole said...

Happy Birthday Tatiana!!! Sounds like you had a great day. Have a safe trip home!

Anonymous said...

Now we have to get you ready for your second trip to your beautiful girl! lol

The flight home is ez. 3 whole hours are shaved off due to the tail wind! yahooooooo! And you can now enjoy all the movies you missed on the way there!

Drink lotsa water and take your no jet lag. nag nag nag

:) jesse + jason and baby Aweena

jeanette wunderly said...

Congratulations!! I love reading about your journey and look forward to more! Best wishes on the long flight home. Can't wait to see more pictures of T.