Monday, August 18, 2014

Nikolaev Ukraine Day Six

Mary is posting today.

We had a great day today with the kids at the Summer Camp. It was chilly again today so I was glad that I remembered a sweater. When we got there the supervisor of the children sent K out with two blankets to lay on the metal benches so they wouldn't be so cold to sit on. We have not been invited to visit inside any of the buildings at the camp so we spend all of our time outdoors. K taught James and I a new card game called "Fool" in English. I played several games, but I still don't quite understand the rules. It was fun none the less and I was grateful for K trying to teach me. B was asked to go inside and do something for the supervisor so he was in and out for a bit. After the game "Fool" I taught K how to play speed. She picked up on it rather quickly and beat me a couple of times. James and I took turns playing K and she seemed to really like it. B came back and James started a game of UNO with him and a couple of the other boys that were hanging out with us. During the game B was asked to go inside again. We saw him at his window and a boy told James to go over to see B. B had climbed up on the window sill to ask James how to use a phone when the supervisor caught him hanging out the window (It was on the first floor...). I guess B was supposed to be doing something for the supervisor and James thought he might have got B in trouble by talking to him so he talked to the supervisor to explain what happened. While we were waiting for B, James started playing UNO with some of the other boys outside. B came out and looked upset. We thought he might have been mad that James was playing with the other boys so I came over and put my arm around him and tried to ask him what was wrong. He was crying a little bit and went over to K and we soon found out that his relative had called and talked to him while he was inside and it had upset him. We were able to calm him down, but it was sad to see that. After that we had a really great day. We found out that K wants to be a designer when she grows up. She showed us a notebook with her designs for clothes and also some interior design. It was really fun to see. B wants to be a professional football (soccer) player. He also went inside and brought out several drawings that he has made. They were really good! He is quite the artist. It has been fun learning more about them. We shared with them some of our family stories too. We brought some snacks with us and it was awesome to see how thoughtful the kids were to share with their friends nearby.

After our visit with the kids we went back to our apartment. We moved from a hotel into this apartment two days ago. It is a really nice place inside, but it was strange driving up to it on the first day. It looked pretty run down from the outside. There is a big metal door that locks automatically from the inside when it is closed. Just outside that door before you walk up some steps there was a dead bird to the side of the walkway. I meant to take a picture of it today, but someone or something cleaned it up before I could. I thought at the time I first saw the apartment that this can't be good. After going through the big metal door we climb about eight sets of stairways. Our apartment has a really nice heavy door with two locks. Once inside, the apartment is really nice. The bedding is a little different, but we have hot water and air conditioning! Even better we have a washing machine! No more washing our clothes in the tub! We still have to hang our clothes to dry, but I'll take it! Here are a few pictures of the inside:

Our bathroom. The tile has a really cool design with beading in between the blue and white tiles.

The second bedroom with an awesome stuffed animal dog.

Master Bed with tiger towels.

Our rockin' bottle opener in the kitchen.
It has been a great apartment! Before we got to the apartment the first day we went grocery shopping because we now have a kitchen. We hadn't seen the apartment yet so we assumed that it had a fridge and freezer. So we carried all of our luggage and our groceries up eight flights of stairs and I couldn't see a refrigerator. I thought all of the food we just bought was going to spoil! Looking around a bit more we found it on the balcony outside of the apartment. So to get our food we have to go out there and then bring it into the kitchen to use it. Kind of different, but we sure are grateful for the apartment!
Tonight we made plans to have dinner with a Canadian couple and an American woman we met at the camp that are also adopting. The Canadian couple has been here a very long time trying to complete an adoption! They finally found their kids and had to change a bunch of paperwork and overcome other obstacles to get to the point they are now and their court date is next week! The American woman is just finishing her 10 day wait period for her son and her husband went home to work after their court date, so she will be leaving for the final process of the adoption in Kiev. She should be complete by next week and going home! It was great to get together with these couples and hear their stories and the advice they had to offer. There are some really amazing people out here!

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