So in 2 days we go to court to make Millie officially ours...then of course we can't take her with us until 15 days later, but rules are rules I guess. Good news is the passport situation that has been taking as much as 3 weeks is rumored to have been remedied. We've been told that it should now only take 5-7 days. This would mean that after we take her to the apt. with us, we'd only have another 5-7 days till we were on a plane coming home!!! I'm a few days off on emails since it's such a royal pain in the rumpus to get anything sent out due to the dial-up and not-so-high speed wireless they have here. So here are our last few days in a nutshell.....
So we left off with a scary elevator ride.....the next 3 days with Millie were AMAZING!!!! She has really started to open up to us and acting more and more comfortable with us. Since Abby and I are both pretty good with kids and they usually open up to us fairly well, it's weird to be with a baby who really is untrusting. I've never experienced this. i guess most babies feel secure since they have families...not the case here....at least not for long!!!! On Thursday at the orphanage some of the older kids came out to play. They usually keep to themselves and we keep to ourselves, since we don't know what boundaries there are. Well...our new friend Dan from the great state of texas decided to break the rules a bit and started chasing some of the kids, so I quickly joined in. It was a blast, but heartbreaking at the same time. These kids were SO starved for attention and adult interaction. We literally became human jungle gyms for the next 35 minutes. Some how he ended up with all the lightweights, I got the older kids, and I kid you not when I say there wasn't a moments break. I'm pretty sure at that point I had decided in my mind that we could surely take at least half of these kids home with us...surely!!!! One little kid in particular that has just the sweetest face and sadly has a clubbed foot and hand that can be easily fixed in the states, but over here not so easy...especially when you're an orphan. Sadly most of these kids are unavailable as they have some distant relative who won't sign off on them to release them to be adopted. So instead they'll grow up without parents or opportunities, and the girls will become prostitutes and the boys will join gangs or become beggars. Reminds me of when God calls us to take care of the widows and orphans in their distress....I'd consider this a distressed situation. That afternoon we went to a store and I bought a soccer ball, but sadly on friday the kids didn't come outside:( Dan and I were looking forward to playing soccer....or probably would end up more like keep away...or just Mike and Dan sweating and wheezing....either way....it would have been fun. Maybe monday.
On this day, Millie was the sweetest she had been up to that point. When we started to give her back to the caregivers, I acted like I had changed my mind and we weren't going to give her back...got a few laughs out of the caregivers. Then as she was being taken away from us....she reached out for us and started to cry. This was the single greatest moment of the trip for us. Thursday was the day we got to leave the orphanage and go get her passport picture taken. She did awesome in the van as did Bennet and Grace. Abby loved her cuddling up and falling asleep on her on the way back...she's such a sweet little thing. On friday she was totally up on her knees trying to crawl like 3-4 times...we'll have very little non-mobile time with her. She also today discovered how to blow a raspberry at her daddy!!!
Friday night...or was it sat. morning??? 3 am we hear Eva cough that horrible cough that you never want to hear a child cough. Croup. So now of course we're worried that Ben will get it since we're living in the equivalent of our living room and kitchen back home with 4 adults and 2 kids. So far he hasn't gotten croup, but last night at about 3 am we heard..."mama?...mama?....yucky." Uh-oh. Ben filled his little diaper and most of his pack-n-play with what can only be described as beef vegetable poop soup. So far we haven't had another "movement" of that type, but we would covet your prayers nonetheless. Since 3am here is like 4pm there, I got on the phone with our Dr. after tracking her down and sending Bart on a Dr. hunting mission as well. She said the usual...pedialight, bland food, no fruit, etc. We're good so far today. Poor little Eva had a rough go of it. Sat. from 6am till 4pm Abby, Steph, Christa, and Eva were at the local clinic, which actually has western drs. including a dr. from south africa...(thank God for anyone who speaks english over here!!!!) That netted me a ton of quality time with just me and Ben, so selfishly, I was a little glad for it. More glad however that Eva's doing much better. Still sounds bad when she's breathing, but there less coughing for sure.
Today, (sunday) is Christa's, or Kiki as Ben has named her, 19th birthday. We're doing our best to make it special for her including, a breakfast at Domino Donuts, (very close to Dunkin Donuts, and not only in their logo.) We then went to Mad Murphy's for lunch. Probably the most american like meal I've had since being in Kaz. Right now Abby's mixing some cake mix...we have no measuring cups and the oven only goes to 250, and yet the recipe calls for 350. Wait...we just figured it out. Directions are in Fahrenheit and the oven is in Celsius. This cake is gonna ROCK!!!! We have no mixer, so the instructions call for 450 stirs by hand.....I miss home. Our washing machine, which takes literally 3 hrs to wash ( no dryer, ) sounds like a space ship of some kind that seems to be in some sort of major distress. It also only take about 1/3 of the load that a washing machine in the states can handle. Well if you've ever seen Ben eat, you know this is a problem...Abby's in constant laundry mode. We had no idea that street racing was so popular here at 4 a.m. Also who feels the constant need to set off fireworks all night long on no particular holiday, (Jim you don't count.)
So....in conclusion...I'd like to add. Tuesday at 11am here so monday at 10pm, I think, we'll be in court trying to add another Scheuchzer into the world!!!! PLEASE pray for us. Pray that we have favor in the judges eyes, pray for our nerves, pray that we represent Christ and America well.
Love you all...more updates to come.......
Mike, Abby, Ben, and Millie
P.S. enjoy the picture of Steph arguing with the police officer. This picture was taken at the beginning of a 30 minute ordeal since she told them she would not pay them to get out of a ticket, (which is standard fair here in Kaz.) at which point she completely offended the cop. In the end she neither paid him nor was she given a ticket, so I guess it worked out ok.