Thursday, February 21, 2013

Metcha Day

Wow! Yesterday was the best day ever!  We left Kiev early in the morning and drove to the region our girl is in.  Once in town we picked up the local SDA inspector to be present for our official meeting with our girl--who will from now on go by "R."

Regional SDA Office
With the inspector in the car, we headed to the orphanage and spoke with the orphanage director who is an extremely kind and hospitable woman.  She truly loves her kids and works hard to create a happy and educational environment.  While the "official meeting" can be somewhat nerve-wracking, she made us feel extremely comfortable.  We spent some time getting to know each other and we showed her a photo book I made containing pictures of our home, family, and ok...pets too.  She seemed to enjoy it and then showed us pictures of her son's recent wedding.  After some socializing we began to go over R's file and medical history.  Once we were done the director had the school's lawyer go and pick up R early from school.  We all laughed about how kids universally love to miss school!  It was her lucky day.  With the director, doctor, lawyer, and inspector present (all of whom we need to write a favorable report), our little R walks in with her school uniform on (a boy's suit) and a cute high pony tail.  She looks at us and says grandly "HI!!!!" We gave her a stuffed animal and she came and sat right between us, grinning from ear to ear.  Right off the bat the director asked R in Ukrainian if she wanted us to adopt her.  She started shaking her head up and down and yelled "DA!!!!" (Yes).  She was beaming with her cute dimples and looking back and forth at us in awe.  I wish we had this on camera but I think this moment will be etched on our brains forever!  Next we went through our picture book and showed her who/what was waiting for her at home.  She was so excited!  She would say "krassivay!" (beautiful) at almost every photo.  Then she apparently felt the need to show off her English skills, as she broke out reciting, in English, numbers and colors.  We were so proud of her! She also stood up and recited a couple of Ukrainian poems from memory.  One of them was about being "sick" and staying home from school...oh boy, she really is my daughter!  After hamming it up she sat back down and told us that she would be good, kind, and very disciplined at home.  Oh what a precious baby.  She gave us each a big hug and we said our goodbyes (for now!).

After our quick but fabulous meeting, we left for the notary office to begin paperwork. We were told in the car we had 15 minutes to decide on her new name.  We didn't realize we had such little time to think about it, but after five minutes we came to a conclusion. Her first name is absolutely beautiful so we kept it the same and added a middle (American) name. And I hate to torture you but we can't disclose her name at this point. But, I will tell you her new last name will be Jackson! :)
Working on paperwork at Notary Office
After the notary office, we went to find our new apartment.  We didn't realize it at the time, but the director arranged all the details for us and was there waiting to give us a tour!  She truly is a gem.  Here are photos of our new place:
Outside of building

Kitchen

Bedroom/Living Room

Bedroom/Living Room

Sunporch (without the sun)
After dropping off our stuff we went back to the orphanage and Miss R came to greet us in the cutest princess dress.  While our facilitator was busy with paperwork, we had about an hour to play with her alone.  She loved calling us mama and papa and we loved hearing it!  We brought a little bead kit to make jewelry.  But then I made the mistake of taking out my iPhone to take a picture.  Our girl, who excels at math, science, and technology, was fascinated by the iPhone (I don't blame her). She took a ton of pictures and then, once realizing that's not all it did, punched away on the calculator, alarm, and just about any app she could get her fingers on.  Having never seen an iPhone before, she knew how to work it surprisingly well!  After some work, we got the phone away and attempted to go back to our jewelry making.  Well let's be real, who cares about beads when there's an iPhone hiding in Papa's backpack?  She would put her hand to her ear and say "telephone??" We tried to stay firm and got out our picture book instead.  She loved looking at it and would say "mama" and "papa" and point to us every time she saw a photo of us.

Once our hour was up, R took each of our hands (talk about melting my heart!) and led us to the "concert hall" for a little performance put on by the kids. Our R was a star flower, let me tell you.  We were the proudest people in the room.  R would look out at us and just beam knowing that we were watching her.  We've got a techno, acting queen on our hands!  We were really impressed at the work that went into this fun bit of theater, and the kids seemed natural and in their element on stage (something I can't relate to).

The director then, very kindly, brought us some food because she realized we hadn't had much to eat all day.  Our orphanage meal consisted of meat (boiled...they aren't allowed to fry anything), some type of rice, beets, a coleslaw type salad, cabbage-filled bread, and apricot juice:
Orphanage Meal
After dinner our facilitator and orphanage team continued on the paperwork.  They'd been working since 11am and kept working until 7:30pm...two hours later than they normally stay.  We are so blessed to have such supportive team around us!  During this time R wrote a letter to the court stating that she wanted to be adopted by us.  She has the nicest cursive writing I've ever seen!  Having been up for a very longtime with virtually no sleep the night before, the director caught on to our sleepiness, and took us to a room with a couch to rest on while they finished up. I just can't say enough about this sweet lady.

What a long and fantastic day it was!  We go back to the orphanage this evening and will be able to visit her every day for about an hour and a half.  We're excited to spend each day getting to know our daughter better and better.  We love her so much already!

***Until the court approves our adoption, we aren't allowed to share any personal information about R or post any photos.  As soon as we get the green light we'll overload you with her cuteness! :)

26 comments:

  1. Well, you win. My makeup is now ruined at work with all my happy tears.

    I can't wait to hear more wonderful things about R and see that precious face!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am so excited for the both of you! AMAZING UPDATE! Glad to hear that everything is going good and that your future daughter already loves you two! But COME ON! Bringing out the iPhone.......tut tut tut..........rookie mistake.......Haha just kidding! Love you both! -Caleb Reed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ugh, Caleb...I know, major rookie mistake. We told you we needed you here to show us the ways! Love to you and Taylar!

      Delete
  3. Indeed so wonderful to read! Thank you for sharing. Can't wait to meet your R !

    ReplyDelete
  4. Loved reading your blog today. Isn't it amazing how quickly it all unfolds? I remember being surprised by how quickly they ask if you want to adopt the child (for us it was only after an hour with him)and then how everything moves forward from there with the SDA, getting forms notarized (which is a highly desirable job over there), and we pray that everything goes smoothly for you guys and look forward to reading more and seeing more photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your prayers and personal insight! We found out that a notary here requires additional schooling past a law degree. Very different than in the US, and like you said, very desirable!

      Delete
  5. Yay, yay, yay! What a great update!

    So excited at how eager R was to interact with and want to engage with you guys from the get-go! And how neat for her to get to experience having you guys looking up at her during her little program and for you guys to feel her seeking out your eyes as she was performing...even on that very first day! What a neat way for her to feel what having a mom and dad means, even just on one level, from the very first!

    Love how God is paving the way for you guys, in forging the relationship with R, in giving you such a great team of people with you there who are so committed to seeing things go well (and quickly!) for you guys and help make things happen, etc. Go God!

    Praying!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your prayers! God sure is great and is blowing us away with His perfect timing, provision, and blessings.

      Delete
  6. Congratulations!!! Such great news!!! Looking forward to pictures of your daughter :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Hopefully we can post some photos soon!

      Delete
  7. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THANK GOD! I COULD BURST WITH JOY! WE LOVE YOU! -KIM AND KYLE

    ReplyDelete
  8. I can't tell you how happy I was to read this! We can't wait to see her. :-) Again, much love to you both, and to R!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We can't wait for her to meet you guys! She looks at our family album just about every day and loves reading off your names. She loves you already!

      Delete
  9. wow!!!! I'm so excited for you two!!!!! I can't wait to meet R. She sounds wonderful:) oh yeah guess what we had snow like last week and yesterday a little so that was exciting :) Is it snowing in Ukraine? and I like hearing the Russian in your guys's posts keep it up...lol Mr. Jackson or Mrs. Jackson do you guys know more Russian by now than me??? haha
    love always Rachel
    Miss you both!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, snowing in CA? Crazy! It's been snowing on and off here. The last few days have been pretty warm though. I let Mark learn the Russian (haha)...so you definitely know more than me! And I'm pretty sure him...haha! :)

      Delete
  10. WOW!!! This is wonderful news!!!! As I sit here in tears reading your story I can't wait to meet this precious little girl, but for now the pictures will do!!! xoxo :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for all your love and support Aunt Cyd!

      Delete