A video about our family

Sunday, April 24, 2011

7 visits

Yesterday we weren’t able to visit either of the boys – since they don’t allow visitors on the weekends. I wish they did – because that would help us meet the quota for visiting them. There’s a new law that adoptive parents must visit their soon-to-be-adopted-child(ren) 7 times during the first trip and 7 times during the second trip (prior to court). This wouldn’t have been a problem in Ukraine because we visited both Iryna and Keith 2x per day for 2 hours at a time and they allowed us to visit them on the weekends.

Here in this region of Russia, they only allow us to visit either orphanage between noon and 1pm Monday through Friday, so we can only visit one child per day. That means we need 14 business days to get all 7 visits in per child, BOTH trips. And that’s not including all the other adoption-related things we need to do on both trips (notary, court, passport, visas, etc). See the problem here? That’s a LOT of days for Tyler to take leave in addition to the AF giving him 3 weeks for adoption leave, especially with our hoping to drive to OK this December for Christmas (we only go home to OK every other Christmas and my whole family will be there this year).

So, it’s overwhelming. Tyler is leaving this Wednesday to go home with Keith to FL. He can’t afford any more leave and we’ve done everything we need to do this trip, except for the 7 visits for the boys. By the time Tyler leaves, he & I will have visited Calvin and Silas 3 times. After Tyler leaves, I will go see the boys by myself every business day until we leave (2 weeks from now). Another issue is that the first week of May – actually the whole month of May – is pretty much full of Russian holidays and vacation days, so I’ve been told that I may not be able to visit the boys the first week of May, making it more difficult to meet the 7 day quota for the new law for our first trip.

I don’t know how it will all work out. Sveta said that perhaps the judge will be flexible with us, since we cannot visit both boys in one day. We asked each orphanage if they would let us come earlier or later to accommodate visiting both boys in one day. They both said no. We asked to have permission to visit on the weekends. Both orphanages said no. We are doing our best, but it’s hard to meet that quota and I don’t know of anyone who is working fulltime who can take off so much time to bond with two children who don’t live in the same orphanage – Calvin & Silas are 3 hours apart, just like it was with Keith and Iryna except there wasn’t a magical number of times that we had to visit Keith and Iryna in Ukraine prior to adoption. Please pray for us to visit them enough times so we aren’t denied at the court date.


Buildings, including the Kremlin.


Note how small the tv is! And yet, the wii is on all the time. I guess size doesn't matter after all?


Some food items. Milk jug with bags of milk. Delicious mixed fruit juice. CocaCola Light (instead of Diet) with American (?) Orange soda. Mayonnaise and ketchup. Bagged whipped cream ice cream.


Our trip to McDonalds! We bought 40 chicken nuggets, 2 bigmacs, 2 medium french fries and 3 bottles of fizzy water. We didn't mean to buy the fizzy water and we were happy that they exchanged the ones that hadn't been opened. We met a nice guy in there, Alex, and invited him to the game night on Friday. He was really nice and we hope to get together with him again while we're here, at least, with the missionaries present as his English is limited and our Russian is pretty much nonexistant. :)

Today is Easter Sunday! The Easter Bunny brought Easter treats for the kids and they loved them! Here is a picture of the Easter treats, a neat statue, and the souvenir market.

We got all gussied up and went to church. The branch president asked me to sing and I accompanied myself singing I AM A CHILD OF GOD (in English). I really felt the Holy Spirit as I sang and I hope that the other members did, too. I really enjoyed our Sunday School class. Elder Lovett taught about Christ and His resurrection and I felt the Holy Spirit during the lesson. It was a great meeting. I love how I can go to church here in Russia and feel uplifted just like I feel in FL or OH or OK or Panama or Ukraine or Taiwan! The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the same across the world and I feel so blessed to be a part of this church. I know that it is true. I hope you all have a blessed Easter and find some time to think about our Savior and all that He has done for us. God bless you all. Here’s a video that I’d like to share with you:

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Happy Easter to you guys!

I am glad that you were able to enjoy yourselves today.

I read in this post that you guys will come back for trip 2. For some reason I thought you had plans to try and get court date and take them home this trip. I get so confused how adoptive parents do one trip and others only do 2 but guess it is not for me to worry about. When do you think trip 2 will be?
Sorry to hear that they have such rules but yet the orphanages are not trying to help in anyway. I thought they wanted these kids adopted. If so then you would think they would work with you just a little.

If I were you I would still try to get a copy of both of the boys medical records or as much as you can and have it translated in English. Then when you got home you could send it to the Cardiologist and see what he says. If you do not have a Cardiologist already that you love I still recommend doing the way I suggested, and usually if they are not able to take new patients they will still refer you to someone good. I hate to be mean but just because they are a Doctor, does not mean they are very good with all types of patients. You really need someone that is considered the Best for these 2 little ones.

Love,
Sheila

Sarah C said...

Good luck visiting the boys. It sounds like they are making it very hard for you. I hope it all works out.
Cute Easter pictures. It looks like you and your family had a wonderful Easter. I am glad you were able to sing in church. I am sure everyone loved that.
We are praying for the rest of the adoption to go well.
Love ya!

McElwain Pirates said...

I hope it works out to visit both boys enough times! We will be praying something works out, and you get all your visits in, or find another solution (such as one of the orphanages bending the rules for you). Thanks for the update!

We hope Tyler has enough leave left to got to Oklahoma this Christmas with your family!

MariaG said...

This 7-visit "thing" sounds very difficult if the orphanages won't work with you. What the heck? As someone else already pointed out ... don't they wish for these children to find families?

About visiting ... Can you arrive at 1pm for a 1 hour visit and then leave for a good chunk of time (1 hour) After your departure, come back again for a second visit, thereby visiting twice in one day? 'Just a thought.

Maria (Canada)

MariaG said...

Oh dear ... I just re-read your post and now I see you can only visit between noon and 1pm. HUH???? (I for some reason though it was b/w 1-4pm). Now I see that the 7-day requirement with two children 3hrs apart is CRAZY???
Sorry to not have read the post more carefully the first time.
Maria (Canada)

Jill said...

Sheila, we hope to come back in July but it might be September. :(

Maria, you would think they wouldn't be making rules to prevent adoption, right?! I know that they are just trying to avoid another child being flown home or another hot sauce fiasco. :/