Day 2 in Moscow may not sound quite as full as it has felt... so you'll have to trust me that it was very full.
Thanks to much grace and the prayers of His saints I fell into bed last night and was able to sleep most of the night. I arose at 5 for quiet time so I could be refreshed before being reunited with the children. At 7am, after their all-night train ride, Daria, Alexander and Oksana were delivered to my door on the 22nd floor of my apartment building. It was a joyous reunion! The Lord delivered to my very door the 3 people we've been praying for all these months.
|Alexander, Oksana and Daria (l to r)|
|Our first breakfast together - Dunkin Donuts on New Arbat Street|
|Playing on a playground behind a typical apartment building - notice the razor wire in the background|
We drove to a nearby medical clinic where the kids got a cursory examination and insightful diagnosis that they had all the signs of being orphans (rickets, etc.). Oh, and they got a large bill as well, which I discovered on the spot was payable only in rubles. Almost everything else in this process has been payable only in dollars, so that's what I had brought to the appointment. The Foats loaned me the rubles I needed which I was able to repay after visiting a bank at our next stop. We've discovered it's actually very helpful to stay in touch with other families going through the process as we all seem to get slightly different information. They had seen an incidental comment in an email letting them know they needed rubles for the appointment. On the other hand, we had received more complete information on documents needed for the embassy - they had nearly had to return home to get more documents and only avoided the crisis through extensive efforts by their family back home. Oh well, it's just part of the process, and now it's over.
|Our 3 kids with the Foat family at the "super market"|
After our shopping trip we headed to the apartment to await my luggage, which was promised by 2pm. I felt it prudent to wait in the apartment and be available when it arrived, rather than relying on the door keeper to receive the luggage while we explored Moscow. We were tired anyway, so I called rest time. However, it turned out that rest time was only rest time for Oksana and me, as I discovered upon awakening that Daria and Alexander had taken it on themselves to fix our dinner. Meanwhile, the little one cuddled and napped with me. It turns out that Daria is quite a good cook, which she says she learned at the orphanage, and she created a very tasty meal with the help of Alexander (see photos below). Daria is also a very good leader of her new siblings, serving and coaching them all throughout the day!
|Our experience is that Russians generally set a beautiful table|
|Peace before the storm|
Unfortunately, I discovered that Oksana has an arsenic hour... an intesnse one. They are all adjusting to an unimagineable change, but the youngest has never known anything but orphanage life. I can't begin to imagine how scary this change must be to her, and about once a day she melts into inconsolable sobbing. Fortunately, God has provided me much grace. He has also given me discernment to differentiate between times of understandable fear and times where she is testing me. I must say, our youngest children have it pretty rough, as their old parents didn't just fall off the turnip truck!
After our delicious dinner we called Momma with her Bible Bee entourage, as well as the gang back home. We also SKYPED with Grandma and AJ (how about those septegenarian computer geeks!). I also got my bags about 9:15pm, as the delivery service had suffered a major breakdown during the day (the flight had arrived at 10:10am.
Finally, we finished our full day with a traditional reading of The Foot Book (a must for parents of young children), the Bible (our first short section together) and showers (which felt OH SO GOOD after having no clean clothes for 2 days), culminating in a relatively peaceful bed-time. I was able to turn in about 11:30 after getting everyone else settled.
Tomorrow we hope to visit the Moscow zoo with the Foats and may take in the circus in the evening (depending more on my energy levels than that of the children).
Thank you all for your continuing prayer cover!
PS - Yes, I'm finishing this the next day, which means I'm officially behind. I had to call it quits at 11:30 but will try to catch up yet today.