Category: Kazakhstan

The Best Valentine

Valentine’s Day is a big deal in our house. Find out why in an oldie but goodie Ay, Mama! *********************************************** Twelve years ago, Bill bought me a tiny, adorable Jack Russell Terrier puppy for Valentine’s Day. She was the first dog I ever had. We named her Aimee and she quickly became our spoiled little... Read more »

Happy Valentine's Day!

When I think of Valentine’s Day, the last word that pops to my mind is “romance.” This might have something to do with the man I married. You see, I married my best friend. I married the love of my life. I married a strong, supportive partner. I married someone I knew would be an... Read more »

Project Playground - Mission Trip 2010

Today’s guest blogger is Susan Serra, a fellow Kaz adoptive mom who has graciously agreed to tell us about a life-changing trip back to Kazakhstan.   Adopting our daughter, Leeza was like nothing else I have ever experienced. We gained so much more than our precious daughter from our time in Kostanai, Kazakhstan. For 11 weeks... Read more »

The Not-So-Happily-Ever-Afters

On May 15, 2010, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan announced that no new adoption dossiers (set of required documents) would be accepted due to Kazakhstan joining the Hague Convention, an international agreement to safeguard adoptions. On the upside, this will ultimately be a good thing for families, as the Hague Convention... Read more »

Never Leave it Too Late

After a long three months in Kazakhstan and a seemingly longer 20-plus hour plane ride alone with me, Dylan was finally settling into his new home in Chicago. All the adoption books warn you not to expose a child to too many people once you bring him home, so although we were anxious to introduce... Read more »

The Long Journey Home

This was it. The moment I’d been dreading ever since learning I’d have to finalize Dylan’s adoption by myself in a strange new city. After living in Kazakhstan for almost three months, it was time to head back to the US. Because Bill’s visa expired before Dylan’s adoption was finalized, I was now forced to travel alone for more... Read more »

Finalizing Our Adoption

(Continued from two weeks ago)   There were only two more steps needed in order to finalize Dylan’s adoption: take him to the International Clinic (or SOS Clinic) for a medical examination before he would be allowed to leave the country, and have an exit interview at the American Embassy. There was no American Embassy... Read more »

Goodbye Kostanai!

If there is anything we’d learned about International adoption, it was that it’s completely unpredictable. You have to learn to go with the flow and try not to stress about every little detail. For the most part, I think we were able to do this. Sure, there were disappointments, like the fact that we couldn’t... Read more »

Getting to Know You...

I know it sounds silly given all we went through in order to become parents, but I think it wasn’t until Dylan was finally in the apartment with us that I realized the enormous responsibility I now had. I had to somehow keep this boy alive, make him thrive, and hopefully help form him into... Read more »

Counting Down the Days...

A few days before we were to take custody of Dylan, we received the difficult news that he was suffering from an infection in his throat and would not be released to us until he felt better. After lamenting the loss of our official “Gotcha Day,” Bill and I resigned ourselves to continuing our daily... Read more »