Adoption Trip

foreground
The pictures we received by mail introducing Artur, Luiza, and Milena
outside
Close on the house on Monday, get furniture on Tuesday, have the social worker visit Wednesday, leave Sunday for Poland!
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Street life in the Old Town of Warsaw
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The Barbican Gate
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View of the Barbican from the city wall.
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Stalin's other gift to the people of Poland- the Palace of Culture (how is that for a Soviet-sounding name?) Notice the giant Hypermarket in the middle ground. Somehow, I find that sweet.
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With Copernicus (native son, with heliocentric solar system in hand) in front of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
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The first day. Lunch at McDonalds. Already, bonds are forming. Already, Americans in the making.
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On the viewing deck at the Palace of Culture. Artur is proudly 7 (see the fingers?). Everyone else enjoys the wind.
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Back up the steps to the Dom Dziecka (children's home) on the first day.
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Artur in his room at the Dom Dziecka with his Happy Meal toy and his English books. The Happy Meal toy is still his favorite toy ever, even though it was lost a week after he got it!
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Artur, ___ and ___ showing off various English books. The children sleep two or three to a room, and about 14 to a group.
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Artur with his toy, Cathy with her smile, and Luiza with her picture of our house.
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Enjoying apple juice at the apartment. The glasses didn't survive long. Notice that there always seem to be three or four different things happening at once!
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Through the woods near the Dom Dziecka with our interpreter (and part-time sanity saver), Marta.
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Energetic, affectionate, and loud are the adjectives that spring to mind....
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Marta, along with the kids at their best. The kids spent a lot of time in the children's home doing crafts, and they enjoy them still.
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Isn't she lovely? Isn't she won- der- ful?
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Drawing. What a difference a year has made!!
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Outside our first (of three) apartments. Catja spent six weeks in Warsaw altogether.
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The tomb of the unknown soldier. With Poland's history, there are many, many unknowns that have made the ultimate sacrifice.
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The fountain in Saxon Gardens on a lovely, gray November day. All is action!
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Luiza keeping things moving.
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There was a time we could wear them out. Artur wanted a father out of this adoption deal, and he got one.
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Which one is sweeter?
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Artur proudly showing the Apple Juice picture (see above)
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Yes, we can be a terror when we don't get our way!
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Luiza took on, sounded out, and enjoyed Brown Bear
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The joys of the bath! (one of several joys of the bath, actually)
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We went through a lot of index cards, paper, crayons, pencils, cardboard, etc in keeping everyone craftily busy.
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"Let me tell you about the must-see sights..."
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Dom Dziecka staff, ____ and ___ along with ___, ___, and Oskar. Artur is at the back right.
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At the much better second apartment. Mom writes e-mail while the children discover bubble wrap!
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Popping bubble wrap is apparently a joy universal to all cultures. What a difference a year makes!
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The changes are almost beyond describing.
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Thanksgiving
Our first Thanksgiving, spent at the Warsaw International Church. This body of believers took care of us through the difficulties.
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Our first Christmas party, spent frosting (and eating) cookies!
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In the director's office on the last day- the day we brought them out. Madame Direktor, Kancelaria Gogolewska, Madame Direktor, ____, Milena, and Artur