Are you planing on keeping Lena and Ilya as their middle names or not?
Yes, we will keep Lena and Ilya as their middle names and we will call them Lena and Ilya, unless they chose otherwise. Lena’s full name is Olena, but they all call her Lena (so we are dropping the O for her legal name). They actually call Ilya Ilyusha, but it took me awhile to realize that and we were already calling him Ilya.
so do they speak any english?
Not yet, but by the time you meet them, they probably will be! We have been using our tiny knowledge of Russian with them and speaking English around them. They should pick up English more once they are no longer hearing Russian most of the time. Ilya is very smart and speaks a lot of Russian… I think he will pick up English very quickly. Lena is a little copycat, so I think she will quickly pick up our words and Ilya’s.
Are you able to get any photos of the other RR kids?
Legally, we are not allowed to. That being said, if I have the camera and one of them is walking through the room that we’re in, I will take pictures of Ilya and Lena and if I happen to have the camera zoomed in on the wrong face… WHOOPS! 😉 And we’ve gotten lots of requests to be on the lookout for different kids, trust me, we are. I stare. And then I get home and go on RR and we said… I think it was James, what do you think? We know how much you all want info on these kids and how it will help them find families. I’ve talked to our facilitator about it, but she told me that this is a Ukrainian law, the orphanage follows and blatantly breaking it could jeopardize our adoption.
Do you get to see them every day while you’re there?
We don’t get to see them on the weekends. Just Monday-Friday, 9-12. Or pretty much whenever they want to give them to us and take them from us. Yesterday, they picked them up around 11:30. We need to stay on the good side of the orphanage, be super nice to them and pretty much do as they tell us. Because, when we go to court, the deputy director will stand up and say how great we are, how clear it is that we love them and how this is best for Ilya and Lena.
At what point do they get to leave the orphanage?
We will not get to take them from the orphanage until a few days after our 10 day wait is up, until we are ready to leave Donestk and go back to Kiev, I think. This is because once the wait is up, we do lots of running around for birth certificates, passports and other papers. We may literally drive around all day and not stop for food, so it is better to leave them in the orphanage so we can get this done quicker. So, we will have court on December 6th, wait is up on December 16th, and we’ll probably get them the week of Christmas. I’d love to be home for Chrismas, but it is not looking super likely right now. We’ll see.
I’m happy to answer any other questions… weekends are a good time to ask, because there are no cute kids I’m blogging about.