Friday, January 20, 2012

Together at Last

After my last post (where I frightened everyone), I'm sure you were ready for some reassuring words, and unless you are on Facebook you didn't see that Barry arrived safely.  Let me recap the last few days:

Wednesday around 6:00pm (Russia time):  Barry arrived FINALLY!  It was so so so so so good to see him.  We got ahold of our driver (who ended up being very kind and gracious...and not scary at all) and headed to Vladimir.  It took a long time.  Around 10:30 or 11 we got "home."  Barry began the process of unpacking and we soon headed to bed.

Thursday:  We slept in a little...and I ran just across the alley to a store called "Magneet" to get bananas and cheese.  We were just going to eat a lunch of grilled cheese sandwiches.  Sadly, when I returned, the bread I purchased last week was growing mold, and I opted to toss it and make cheesy eggs instead.  I started the process, but asked Barry to help light the stove.  (I couldn't get the nifty little fire igniter thing to work before) Graciously he offered to make the eggs, and I was GRATEFUL.  For most of you who know know I LOVE to cook.  One day before I left for Russia, I spent most of my day in the kitchen making about 4 different meals to freeze, and a double batch of muffins.  I loved it.  Here, I don't enjoy cooking.  I don't even feel like I know how!  A simple thing like pasta to make in the US isn't as easy here. Let me illustrate:
US: turn on water to boil; put in noodles; drain.  Open can, pour on hot noodles. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese already shredded from the bag in the refrigerator.
Russia: pump enough water through water filter into nalgenes to fill pot.  boil noodles.  figure out how to drain them without a strainer. Use tomato paste mixed with more filtered water to make pasta sauce. Mix. Shred cheese after making sure that your grater is completely dry.  (yesterday before I used it to make cheesy eggs...I used my blow dryer to make sure there was no water left)

Ok, enough about the joys of cooking.  After "lunch" we went to the "Voksal" to catch our bus to Gus and meet up with the interpreter that we had hired to come with us.  I met her earlier in the week with the team and she was GREAT!  To get to the bus station (voksal) you have to walk down a bizillion steps that are incredibly slippery: welcome to fall #1 of the day for Jessi.  I only hit 2 or 3 steps.

Seeing Sveta was great.  We played with balloons, bubbles, and other assorted toys.  The girl loves to be picked up an spun around.  I, sadly, will throw up all over the place if I partake in such an activity.  She let our interpreter spin her, and she even let Barry do it twice.  Once he got a great laugh from her. Oh, and I almost forgot...there is a chicken pox quarantine at the when we visit, we have to wear masks.  I'm sure we look scary!! :)

    We returned to Vladimir in time to have pasta for dinner at Globus, pick up a few groceries (insert fall #2 as I got off the bus - only broke 1 of 20 eggs though!!), grab items for the team, and join part of the team and a few Russian friends for tea.  Awesome.  It was so good to see our friend Nick, who was our interpreter last December.  He was working on a cruise ship for a while, and is now planning to leave Monday to go to Pennsylvania. We had a nice chat, road the bus home, watched a house, and went to bed.

    Friday: This morning we got up early.  Barry made french toast.  We went to the voksal where I didn't fall down the stairs and caught a bus to Gus.  We made it to the orphanage around 10, and were with Sveta for about an hour.  She was really trying to test limits today.  I think the fact that we didn't take an interpreter helped her case.  She just walked around the little room trying to get us to let her turn on the tv, and play with the phone.  She flitted from toy to toy and I'm not sure she quite knew what to do with herself.  She did speak quite a bit, and we were able to figure out a few times what she wanted.  She kept asking for water...because yesterday it was her favorite thing to play with (and she had it all over her).  I was worried the caregivers wouldn't like that she had to go to the bathroom more often, so we didn't let her have it today.

    Barry and I have decided that Sveta is used to getting whatever she wants.  She seems to be a favorite.  She asked a caregiver for candy, and a few minutes later, the woman arrived with candy.  She's the oldest, so I think they let her get away with a few things and give her treats.  She also talks their ears off!! We will be posting pictures soon.

    Sadly, we are still waiting to hear about her passport.  Hopefully we'll still hear today.  I'll try to post if we do!  It's Friday date night tonight for us, and then we are going to Suzdal (a nearby town...look it up, it's pretty cool...they have a cucumber festival in the spring) tomorrow with the team.  Should be fun.

    We are thankful for all of your prayers and support.  I've been SO encouraged by each of you.  Love you all!! And since you've all waited FOREVER to see's one:  This is Sveta Grace Morton...and her mama.


    1. YAY!!!! She's BEAUTIFUL!!! :) Still praying everything continues to go smoothly for you all! Thanks for the update---I LOVED this one!! :)

    2. Thanks for posting the details of your days. It's so fun to read. LOVE the picture!!!! Praying, praying, praying... :) Amy

    3. Awww I am so happy to see a picture of your daughter! She is beautiful!!!

    4. i burst in to tears when i saw the picture. so happy for her, so happy for you! You dont know me, Im Tracy Frensemeiers sister...been following your journey through her and praying for sweet Sveta to be with her mama and papa for about a year now.