Our flights back to Kiev went off with out a hitch.
A little turbulence and some motion sickness, but no delays.
Our first day in Kiev was spent catching up on sleep and checking out a few new sights downtown.
We stumbled upon this amazing little park filled with Easter Eggs.
This is part of their Passover celebration.
( Kaly and Ayla, you would have gone crazy here! It was so beautiful. There were eggs hanging from every branch. The pictures do not even come close to how amazing it was.)
Tuesday we began our drive to Olya's birthplace.
The roads were very bumpy and we darted in and out of traffic and around many holes,
both Jeromy and I got car sick. ;(
We survived the drive and truly the day was smooth sailing.
We had no driving issues, our time with our facilitator and driver was very nice and the best part.....
We got Olya's Birth Certificate!
It has her new name and we are listed as her parents!
It was such a special time, after a long and nerve wracking wait, we went in to sign documents. The woman in charge said to us that she knew Olya's birth family. She seems very pleased we were adopting her and left us with many blessings and well wishes. She and the other woman in the office both had tears in their eyes and hugged us goodbye.
We feel so blessed to have this small connection with Olya's past.
God has continued to bless us in this adoption over and over.
Today we again started the day at 7:30 am.
We finished at 7:30 pm.
What did we do all day?
Well, mostly we waited while our facilitator ran in and out of about 5 different offices about a hundred times.
That woman needs to wear some Nikes instead of heals ;)
We had to get things notarized, copied, new passport made so we could go get a new passport made ;)
Yep, two passports, long story.
We also had to go to the social security office, back and forth to the orphanage.
All of this only a few issues occurred, which were quickly remedied.
We are exhausted, I am sure our fac. is dead asleep by now.
Oh yeah, then we took stuff to over-night on the train and went and bought treats for the kids and administration so we can throw them a party.
Why a party?
Because tomorrow we are taking their sweet Olya away forever.
We don't want them to hate us, so we are giving them candy ;)
Yes, tomorrow is our official "gotcha day"!
We have more paperwork to do but tomorrow night we will all sleep either in a car or on a train together and begin our lives as a family.
No more goodbyes, no more needing permission to take her somewhere.
We should arrive in Kiev Friday morning, then we will start more paperwork.
We will be at the US Embassy to get Olya's Visa.
They said they would do their best to process it on Friday!
For those that do not already know, this is the LAST STEP!
We are planning to fly home on Sunday!
We praise God for allowing this process to go so quickly.
In many ways it has been harder than I ever expected, but in other ways it has gone so much smoother than we could have ever imagined.
The hard stuff has been overcome through lots of prayer.
Why prayer is often my last resort on some things , I do not know, but get this, it works. ;)
He is changing my heart and attitude and all of a sudden the hard doesn't seem so hard anymore.
Now we can just focus on the excitement of being parents to the sweetest 16 year old and enjoy our time getting to know her.
Praise God we will soon say goodbye to this long journey of adoption, and begin a new journey as parents of FIVE!