Friday, May 4, 2012

Day 18-Music Class

Maria's View

Today, we got to the orphanage and the smell of cabbage and cornbread hit me like a wall!  Reminded me of being at home with my mom and dad.  My mom cooks that sometimes and I would LOVE to have a huge helpin' of hers!

We rang the buzzer and waited patiently when I heard some children coming down the stairs.  I turned to watch them just in time to witness a little toddler loosing his footing and he fell down step after step after step.  He probably fell down at least 6 before the nanny caught up to him.  Chris was about to run over to help him but I held him back for fear of interfering since his nanny was taking care of the situation.  Bless his heart.  I know it hurt him.

Our nanny finally let us in and it was silent so we realized that the groupa was already outside.  We signed the log, handed over our passport, and the oh so important piece of paper and made our way through his living area to go outside through the back way.  On the way through, I noticed that there were toys stacked on a shelf so I'm sure they get to play.  The nanny yelled out to the other one who had our boy that we were coming and she had him ready for us.  When she handed him over, she started fussing over his clothing and trying to tuck his shirt in.  The shirt was a size 4-6 month so it was a little short on him, therefore, it wouldn't stay tucked.  We took him immediately over to the swing and she followed us over and told us that we needed to strap him in, I think, so we did, even though there was absolutely no way that he could fall out of it.  Then she handed us a cloth and motioned that it was for his face.  I then finally got the chance to look at his face and his little eyes are so irritated and red.  Poor little guy.  I'm certain that he wasn't feeling the greatest.  I know I sure wasn't.

So he was a bit grumpy today.  Understandably so.  We let him swing for about 20 mins while I tried to tickle him up and he just didn't want to laugh too much.  So we took him out of the swing and went to the empty play shed.  I handed him over the entire bag of toys today just to see what he would do with them.  He emptied the bag by dumping all of the toys out,  and then played with the...................bag. haha.  He wadded it up and scrubbed the play shed with it.  It really appeared that he was trying to clean with it.  It wouldn't surprise me because he watches very intently and I'm sure he absorbs the happenings from every day life around him!  So I let him scrub for about 15 mins and then I worked the bag away from him, determined to get some laughter out of him.  He let me love on him, hug, and squeeze, but he was not going to give those sweet smiles away easily.

The nanny motioned that we could use the stroller if we would like so we put him in that and he was squirming a good bit like he didn't know what to think about being strapped in.  So I handed him giraffe meat and he instantly popped it in his mouth and settled down.  We snugged up the straps and started making laps around the orphanage.  He was so very sleepy but he never drifted off.  We noticed that the music teacher was making her way to the play shed that our groupa was using.  I didn't want him to miss that because it seems that all of the little children just love this activity so we strolled him over and asked if the nanny would like for Griffin to join them.  She instantly unstrapped him from the stroller while the other nanny went to get our passports.  She held him in her lap as the music began to play.  He seemed that he was trying to clap to the beat a bit and the nanny made the expression like, "LOOK!".  We were so proud of him!  Then the music teacher pulled out her puppets and he let out a wail like he really wanted that puppet!  haha!  It was really cute.  It was obvious, though, that we were causing a distraction to the other little ones so we decided to end our visit so that they could all get their full experience.

We went inside to wash our hands and we glanced out of the window to notice that the nanny had put him in a walker and had given him a tambourine. :-)

By this time, I was feeling pretty bad.  I think I may be getting a sinus infection and it was triggering a migraine...So we ate lunch at McD's, which is a safe place for me to eat because I truly get full and most of the time, just eating makes me feel better.  That, along with taking a migraine pill...

After that, we went to the grocery store to get everything we need to try a macaroni and cheese recipe today that a Been There Done That (BTDT) mom gave us to try here!  Thanks, Ashley C.!  She also gave us a few other recipes to try so we are going to experiment with a new one every day.

This evening, on our way outside, he noticed that the main door was propped open and he knew that it was suppose to be closed, normally.  He reached out for it, so I stopped to see what he would do.  He pulled, tugged with all of his might, and it wouldn't budge.  I took him around to the other side of the door, and he pushed and pushed.  Nothing.  Then he started getting aggravated. haha.  He's a very determined little boy! 

We went to the play shed and I could just tell that he wasn't that happy.  I really think that he's not feeling well or maybe adjusting to his new groupa is a little difficult for him.  No matter how hard I tried, I could only get a faint smile out of him.

We took him over to the swing and he fell asleep.  Yeah, I really don't think he feels well... or maybe he isn't sleeping well at night.  Such a huge guessing game!  He slept there for a good 45 mins and while we were letting him relax, a groupa came outside to the play shed right next to us.  Do you remember me telling you about a little girl who yells out Griffin's biological name every time she sees him?  She's probably around 3 years old, beautiful, red hair, has the most distinct sound to her precious little voice.  Well, guess what?  She has a twin!  (This explains why I felt like I was seeing her all over the orphanage!)  And now they are both in the same groupa.  They saw the we had him with us and both of them ran over to us and was so smiley and happy and the twin had to show me all of her booboo's.  I wanted to scoop these 2 girls up!  The nannies actually let them stay with us a minute and they were trying to get inside my purse and wanted to see my lip gloss.  I just love them!

Griffin woke up and seemed to be feeling a little better and wanted to take a walk.  So we held his little hands and off he went!  He walked pretty far and once he was tired, we scooped him up and carried him a few laps around the orphanage until our time was over.

Chris was ahead of me as we walked down the long hallway and I thought to myself that we really didn't connect very well with him today.  I was very discouraged and then I started missing my girls even more... and I'm still not really feeling that great.  and blah blah blah.  I really want to get him home and not knowing when that will be is starting to wear on me. 

The nanny that opened the door took him from us and took him straight back to the play pen.  She then motioned that she wanted us to stay there while she went out to do something.  I thought it was probably about the little paper. Why wouldn't it be? haha. So we just stood there in that place.  I peeked down the hall and 2 blond headed boys were looking at us, smiling.  So we played peek-a-boo with them until the nanny came back.  She then motioned for us to join her in the play area!  What?!  So we followed her in. It was then that we realized that we were actually babysitting for her  while she stepped out for a minute.  And there was our little dude standing in the playpen with the other 9 children.  He turned his sweet little face to us and smiled!  How's that for a connection?  And not only did we get a smile, he cruised until he got to the side closest to us and swung his leg up on the rail like he was about to escape.  God knew that I needed a little encouragement and I REALLY appreciated that so much!!  I went over, gave him some sugars on the top of his little head and told him goodnight... Then we left.  My heart was much happier as I made my way down the long hallway.

Chris's View:

Time to get back on with the cultural blogs.  Today's is very neat... at least I think so.

On the way out of the orphanage one day, something caught my eye, but I didn't get to look at it in-depth.  We have had a holiday here this past week, so it seemed like we were literally the only people in the place... other than the kids of course.  The holiday gave me a chance to investigate what caught my eye.  At first I was kind of startled by this image, but after looking it up, it is really neat.  Over the exit of the main door out of the orphanage is this image, in a little dark area:

Like I said, seeing the cross and the skull and such really kind made me nervous.  My first thought was some secret society like the Mason's or the Skull & Bones built and funded the orphanage, or something even more sinister.  As soon as I could get Maria off the computer (we only have the one Internet capable electronic device since the apartment we are in doesn't have Wi-Fi) I went to Google and looked up "orthodox cross with skull under it".  I started to get even more nervous when I didn't see anything, until finally, on page 6 of Google images, there it was.  The image was linked from a blog called Grace & Peace.

The question on the site was "Why do Orthodox crosses often portray a skull and crossbones? Isn't that a sign of evil or a symbol of the Illuminati or other secret organizations?"  Wait a second!  Someone just stole my question!  LOL!  So, I read into it, and come to find out, this is called a Russian Orthodox Cross.  The skull is not sinister at all.  It represents Golgotha, The Place of the Skull, or Mount Calvary as many of us Americans know it.  Okay, now I feel better.  I just wanted to make sure my kid wasn't being raised in a place that was designed as an organ factory! 

The letters beside the cross stand for Глава Адамла, which is Slavonic for the Skull of Adam.  This part is what really caught my attention.  I didn't know until this point that Jesus was referred to as the 2nd Adam, and that it was rumored that Jesus was crucified on the spot that was believed to be Adam's burial site.  This really blew my mind.  I had no idea that such a theory existed.  How beautiful is God's perfect design.  I do not claim to be a Biblical scholar in any sense, I find myself siding with Mark Twain's view more often than not, "It's not the parts of the Bible that I don't understand that scare me, it's the parts that I do understand."

If you want to check out Grace & Peace (hey, since I pretty much stole the main points he discussed in his blog you might as well go show him some love!), click HERE.

See ya'll tomorrow!


  1. Wow! He is really connecting with the two of you! Don't you know he looks forward to having your undivided attention every day! I could understand your heartstrings being pulled in a place like that. I know you are like me and want to take every child home with you. I pray that each and every child gets to have a forever family with loving parents. Thank you for all the wonderful updates!

  2. Yes! We have Eastern Orthodox friends (they are coming over for dinner tonight!) and they explained that to us. It is very neat. Love the cultural posts!

  3. Chris & Maria, our thoughts and prayers are always with you,your little boy is precious I have been blessed by keeping up with your dayto day activites with him. Maybe it won't be to long before you all can be together at home, as a family. Love ya'll !!!!!


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