On Monday we returned home from Russia, well we returned from Houston. We stayed a few extra days to visit with family. It was so great!
The trip was really long. Charlie calculated that he and I took 10 flights in two weeks. The day before Thanksgiving we flew with the three kids to Houston for the holiday and to visit my sister. On Saturday we flew from Houston to Amsterdam (9 hours) and then from Amsterdam to Moscow(three 1/2 hours). From there we changed airports and then flew to Stavropol (2 hours). All told we traveled about 20 hours.
We stayed in the Eurohotel, which I thought was really nice. Even better, the coordinator made all the arrangements and breakfast was included. There was also a nice shower and a hairdryer in the room. While these things were not mandatory, it was really nice not to have to worry with the details.
Our agency is affiliated with Frank and the Frank staff took suck great care of us. We were met by a translator in Moscow and put on the plane to Staropol. In Stavropol we were met by our regional translator. Baulina was there for everything we needed.
On Monday (day #1 in Russia) we met Little Bit and then met with the orphanage director to go over his medical information. We went back for a second visit in the afternoon. On Tuesday (day #2) we visited with Little bit once in the morning and once in the afternoon. That evening we had a meeting with our coordinator to let us know what to expect on trip two/ court. Wednesday (Day #3) we were not able to meet with Little Bit because we went to notary's office to sign the Petition to Adopt. In the evening we went for our last visit. We had to arrive late so it was shorted that usual.
Thursday we spent getting back to Moscow and we let early on Friday morning.
Little Bit seems emotionally normal and health. It took him a while to warm up to us, but was progressing. It was also comforting to see that when is caregivers came into the room he would light up. He clearly is attached to them. The speech therapist also took time to talk to us and let us know that although little Bit has some delays, she believes that they will be resolved once he is at home.
I was really impressed with the orphanage. The playroom we saw was very nice and the children also had music lessons once while we were there. At the end of the lesson a group of children about Little Bit's age came the the playroom. They were all well groomed and dressed.
We almost got to go into the area where Little Bit slept, but the caregivers nixed the idea. Too bad! It would have been great to see where he spent most of his time.