Saturday, November 1, 2008

Day 4, Boo!

We brought some Play-Dough with us today, and our kids had fun playing with it, finding more uses that I ever would have thought possible for the stuff. Borya even invented a game of marbles using it.

I asked today about the spelling of Julia's name, as I've seen it spelled Julia, Yulia, Yulya and Ylia, and it is pronounced with a "Y" sound. They said we can decide how we want to spell it since it differs from the cyrillic spelling anyway. We also asked about middle names. In Kazakhstan, children have patronymic names (not sure if I have that right), which is just their father's name, or a feminized version of it for a girl. Since we'd like to give Borya and Julia American middle names, we asked if they have any they like. Neither did, but Borya said he would think about it. So Fred and I will talk about that tonight and present them with some options tomorrow.

We're falling into a nice, if a bit dull, routine here. The kids from back home call us just before they go to bed, and that is our wake-up call. Best alarm clock I've ever had! Then we get showered and dressed, and head downstairs to the hotel's restaurant for the complimentary breakfast. It's a nice buffet, with a couple kinds of porridge, eggs cooked to order (when the egg chef can be found), yogurt, fruit, tea, many lovely pastries (my favorite part) and a few other things. Fred and I laugh b/c they usually seem to have some "elevator music" playing in the background, which is a loop of Hotel California, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, and something else. Then we head back to the room and pack up a bag to take with us to the orphanage. After hanging in the room for a bit, we head down to the lobby to meet our ride. We are usually met at 9:45 by Olga, a beautiful university student who serves as our translator. Such a sweet girl. Olga, our driver, Fred, Bella and I cram into the car and off we drive, over two rivers and through an industrial area and a very poor-looking residential area to the orphanage, about 15 mins away from our hotel. We spend two hours visiting with the children, then we head back to the Shiny River, where we eat lunch on our coffee table. We generally have bread with some cheese or peanut butter, though we've almost reached the end of our PB supply from home, and we can't buy it here. We drink water or some soda or ice tea that we've bought from the nearby market. So then we're in our room for several hours, during whuch time we will do work/e-mail on the computer if internet is up and running, or we read, play card games, or watch Euro-CNN. We've also made a couple trips to the market for bread, water, snacks, etc. A couple afternoons I've done laundry in the bottom of the shower stall, and then I drape the clothes over the radiators to dry. For dinner we head out early b/c our favorite (read only) place starts getting crowded early. It's called Pizza Blue and is only two bocks from our hotel. They make really good pizza, and meatball soup, and they're pretty cheap. After dinner we take a walk along the river, then back to the hotel to pass the time much as we did in the afternoon. We try to make it to 9:00 before we head to bed, but it ain't easy!

Tune in tomorrow to learn the kids' new names!


Andrea said...

I am so happy for you! I have been following yoru journey for some time now and am thrilled that you are finally with Borya again and the addition of Yulia to your family is a very excting new development!
Congratulations and very best wishes,

Lori (and Dart) said...

Anne, I am in route (Dulles right now) and on the hunt for peanut butter! Lori

Diana and Bob said...

Really enjoying your blog. I like the way you chose to spell Yulia.

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