Praying for Ansley

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Today is Maia’s 17 month birthday! Happy Birthday Maia! :) I met you one month ago today, when you were 16 months old! I look forward to your 18th month birthday... at home!

Today we were busy!! This morning, we met up with Catalina and Calin and went for coffee at the Black Jack café. We don’t usually have to leave the house as early as that, it was almost 10:00 a.m., and it was quite chilly. We're not sure if that's because it was earlier than normal or colder than it has been, but either way, it was nippy! The temperature display said it was -8 degrees Celsius. Yup, chilly! We went to the Black Jack and had some yummy lattes and chatted. It was great to get to talk to them some more and learn more about them! We had a great time.

We got back to the apartment about 1 minute before Masha arrived to take us shopping. Our days are numbered and we still have things to get! First, Masha and Sasha took us to a meat store to choose some sausages. They recommended some with ketchup in them, so we tried those. Also, we bought some salami and Colby and Swiss cheese. Also, we bought what they call bacon, but it is beef and looks more like a piece of ham, so we’ll have to make that and see what it is! It’s not like bacon as we know it or even Canadian bacon – so we’ll get back to you on what it is!

Then we headed to the large flea market to look at many items. First, we were on a mission to find a stroller to give to the baby room where Maia has been staying. Since I asked what they needed/wanted most for that room, they requested a stroller. They only have one (or maybe it’s two) really nice ones in that room and they have about 10 children, so they needed more! Mom and I also thought they needed a new swing, but we really didn’t see many and they are different than in the U.S. so I just wasn’t sure about that. So, we ended up with a stroller and then we went and bought some toys for the room as well. We bought three cute toys for that age range to leave for the room.
This is the stroller for the baby room:

The above are the toys we bought to leave for the babies in the baby room.
THEN, I bought an umbrella stroller that we will have for Maia. This way, we can stroll her around Almaty when we are there, as well as around the airports on our way home. I brought a pouch carrier for her from home, but I can’t imagine carrying her for 24+ hours when we travel home, let alone all over Almaty for a few days. (I thought I might be getting a 7 month old… she’s 17 months old!!)
Here is the picture of Maia's stroller with her snowsuit and coat waiting for her. It looks huge - but it isn't as big as it looks.

We had to get a snow suit for Maia since we’ll be breaking her out of the baby house on Thursday. We ended up with a three piece set… Snowpants with the shoulder straps/bib to keep them up. A winter coat with a zip out vest. It’ll be nice and warm while we are still here in Petropavlovsk and then we can use the appropriate number of layers for the coat when in Almaty, and finally home. We still need to get her boots and a scarf, but we’re getting there! (I brought a hat and mittens from home for her.) We also bought her two more sweaters just to be sure we have enough layers for her once we have her next week. I know we have found it hot here, but she is used to being wrapped up, so we need to make sure we don’t make her cold! Mom liked one of the sweaters, and I liked the other, so I did what any red-blooded American would do. I bought both. For those of you that know us well – you’ll be able to pick in a second which was my fave and which was mom’s. Guesses anyone?

This is entry #1.....
This is entry #2...

I also bought myself a hat and scarf set. They are very nice, very warm and very pretty. I know it won’t be as cold at home as it is here (ever!), but they will last me a long time, and I’ll always be able to remember my trip to Petropavlovsk when I wear them, specifically!

We also found a few stickers that I wanted for my scrapbook. They sell those ‘car stickers’ that say like VB for Virginia Beach, or whatever. Here, they are KZ stickers. I don’t have one on my car, but I had to get one to take home! Also, we bought flag stickers and the symbol of Kazakhstan so I can put them in her scrapbook. Fun!

Then we did our veggie shopping and then our candy shopping in the 'market' section! We also found some Nan which we ate with cheese and salami for lunch when we got home. It was delicious. Anyway – I think today we can truly say we shopped till we dropped! We were all hungry when we headed home and ready for some of that yummy food we had just bought! Then of course, we had to try some of the new candies we had gotten as well. Delish!

Anyway – it was really neat to buy all this stuff for Maia today. I know I had shopped some before since I’ve been here, but today really brought it home! I got pretty emotional (teary) and excited when we were buying her snow suit. For some reason, that made it really REAL! I just can’t wait to buy her some shoes – that’s my all time favorite thing to buy for little girls (and myself!!) We will need to buy some food and that will be exciting too!! It’s getting close, and it’s getting real!!

On a different topic - The big news of the day.... Mom did give up on that puzzle! She has started one I did last week. She DID pack up the other one as if to save it. I told her if she didn’t throw it away, I would when she went to bed. I haven’t yet… but I will. It is NOT going home with us. Dumb puzzle.

Today – Mom and I tried to list the 5 things we each miss most. I haven’t really thought about it (because it makes you miss home all the more!) but it was funny to hear what made up our top 5’s. (Besides people we love, of course!!) I think we’re getting a little sillier the longer we are here. A little slap-happy maybe. We came up with some funny things. What 5 things do YOU ALL think you’d miss MOST if you were away from home and America for 2 months?


Lanetta Gobble said...


Thanks for the invite... I did go find your blog again yesterday.. so I had already read all your posts.. you had invited me several months ago..long before you traveled.. I hadn't even thought to recheck now that you were in country... silly me..
anyway, I'm all caught up now.. and wow... how awesome and amazing for you...
How is Matthew??? How has he handled you being gone??
We are continually praying for you...
Have a great day / night.. LOL

Kim said...

From one Kaz buddy to another- here's what I miss most about home and the godd ole USA:
Clothes dryer
peanut butter
Starbucks- we love Toffee Nut too!
A good hamburger!
The list goes on and on........

Kim said...

Oops- I meant to say GOOD ole USA!

Michelle, wife, mother, child of God. said...

You are a riot, Maia will look beautiful in no matter what you put her in because she will be your daughter, she could wear a burlap sac and just look adorable. She will love new shoes and won't want to take them off, I am convinced it's something God had inbread in us and I bet your family is planning the biggest home comeing for you all, because I bet they miss you as much as you miss them.

Incidently I would just have to say the thing I would miss the most is my bed.

Jennifer M said...

Wow, I'm tired just thinking about all that shopping!!! Lattes at BlackJack though? I'm all there! :-) (I'm a terrible shopper.)

The things I missed the most were (taken straight from my website which I wrote when I was at about the same stage as you are!):
1. My california king size pillow top mattress!
2. Being able to run the air conditioner and the clothes dryer at the same time without tripping the circuit breaker.
3. Milk with a spout for easy pouring.
4. A big fat 1.5 inch thick juicy steak. With a big old pile of REAL garlic mashed potatoes with real potato chunks. And fresh broccoli.
5. Having more than 3 bottoms, and 5 tops to choose from each day when I get dressed!

Jennifer M said...

Oh yeah!! And the most important thing- Happy month Birthday Maia!!!

Angela said...

Sounds like a fun day! The clothes you purchased are so cute! I love the second sweater. It is hard to say what I would miss since I haven't traveled yet. Laundry is a big deal to me - I am certain I would miss our washer & dryer. We are vegetarian, so I will probably miss vegetarian food since it sounds like it is all meat all the time in Kazakhstan.

The snow suit is cute too - you are almost there! Maia will be home before you know it!

Jessica said...

I love to read your posts, it really is a highlight of my day. I laughed so hard about the light bulbs and that dumb puzzle. You inspire me and make it seem closer to when we will travel for our little one. I am so excited that Maia will be officially yours very soon. Let's see..what I would miss the most?......i know my bed for sure, and since we don't have any children I would say our three dogs! I'm sure there will be lots when we finally get to go!

Cindy said...

I'm glad you were able to get some shopping done. I love the snow suit and sweaters. I think my top five would be: 1. Dallas weather. I could bear the cold for a cause or a visit, but would be glad to get back. 2. Seafood, I don't eat red meat so the pickins would be slim. 3. Computer speed, not much patience for a slow connection. 4. My bed and pillow. There is nothing like sleeping in your own bed. 5. Not having to worry about the communication, and being independent again.

I have never visited outside of the USA and the longest vacation I had was 2 weeks and that was visiting family. So, that is my best guess for my top 5.

Have fun with Maia tomorrow. You can celebrate her Bday. Do you still only get 2 hours with her on the every other day you get to visit? I'm sure the Baby House will love the stuff you purchased for them.

Blogger, M.D. said...

I would miss good coffee. It is the thing I head for first off when I wake up. Also, I would miss water pressure in the shower. Most of all, we just miss you guys!