Monday, February 20, 2012

Attention PAPS

Attention Potential Adoptive Parents! PLEASE keep track of your adoption receipts and invoices. Trust me. When you are getting stuff ready for your taxes you have two choices.
#1- You could be beating your head against the wall- converting rubles to Euros to dollars, translating Russian on faded receipts, ordering canceled checks and credit card statements and cussing. (like I am doing right now) -OR-
#2-You could look at your neatly organized receipts with the amounts written on the back and printing out your excel spreadsheet to bring to your tax lady and sleeping right now.
That is all. Just a word of advice. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Yo Ho! Lets Go!

So, I've been in the market for Jake and the Never !and Pirate$ stuff for Charlie's upcoming 4th birthday party. Let me tell you- it's just not out there.
My D*sney insider says it's because Mr. Mouse really didn't think the show would be as much of a success as it is. When we were visiting the Ma&ic Kingdom, the stuff was no where to be found. And you know the Mouse, if he thinks something will turn a profit, you can count on everything from toothpaste to action figures and everything in between.
So in my quest for Jake, I stumbled upon a fantastic new Etsy site, run by Rachel called HET designs. She basically works her magic and changes your photograph into a one of a kind original invitation. (She also does some other fabulous party supplies....) Anyway, her prices are great and the finished product, well speaks for itself! Check her out HERE.
Check out my cute little pirate! (Pay no attention to my shoddy photo editing to remove personal information...that's exactly why Rachel did my invitations!)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Russia Day!

Happy "A" Day Charlie!
Yesterday we celebrated Charlie's adoption day, which he affectionately renamed "Russia Day". We started out by making Russian flag colored cupcakes for his school friends- red velvet, white icing and blue sprinkles. Mmmmmm.....
Then the party really got started. I made Cabbage, Potato and Cheese soup, Blinis with several fillings, Ant Hill cookies and hot tea. It was pretty darn good! I was so surprised :) The only "non-authentic" part was the ice in our drinks at dinner. I gotta have my ice!
We had some really special friends over to celebrate and everyone signed the tablecloth. My plans are to stitch the names of our guests every year and someday pass along to Charlie when he has a table of his own. We also gave him the first of 18 gifts we bought while in Russia, one for each year until his 21st birthday. This year was a tiny matroshka whistle we bought in the Kremlin in Pskov.
It was such a great night. We talked about our memories of Russia and our dear Russian friends. We talked about the little things we never felt the need to talk about (it always seemed before we only talked of the BIG important things...) But it was nice to talk about stopping at gas stations to have tea and the strange smell of the windshield washer fluid that defrosted the frozen windows as we drove along the crazy pothole filled road.
But most importantly we talked about Charlie and the day that started it all....
Our first "Russia Day" was exactly how I envisioned it to be- food, family, friends, and one happy little Russian guy to share it with.

The Russia table!

We decided to leave the menu in Russian so
our smaller "picky eaters" would at least
try everything! They did and they loved it!

Mama making some Blinis.

Papa and our littlest party goer- JACK!

Trying out the whistle. 

Charlie's place card with his little Pskov gift. 
Sidenote: After dinner as we were getting Charlie into the tub, he came running out of the bathroom, in his..ahemmmm..."birthday suit" and exclaimed "NOW IT'S NAKEY RUSSIAN DAY!!!" Oh my.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Today is the day!

Saying goodbye to Dr. Anna....
He was forever ours! As I was reading back on that day, I was thinking "I don't remember writing this" well because I didn't, it was penned by my darling husband. I thought I had finally just lost my mind :0) You can read his words HERE.
What a day that was. I just can't believe he's been ours for a whole year. It feels like he's been ours forever...
We are celebrating BIG tonight. Russian food, Russian  place cards, decorations, the first of Charlie's 18 years of Russia gifts, you name it. I'll post some pictures later.
In the meantime, we are celebrating a HUGE year of being Charlie's proud mama and papa. What a blessing. What an answer to prayer. Please forgive how rough I look in this video and focus on one of the best days of my life!