Every now and then Leeza has the urge to do pull-ups. She is pretty good at them too.

The alarm went off at 4am this morning and my journey home started. I got to fly to Kiev with the Clarke’s and a Canadian man who was also adopting from our region (not from RR). Niko picked us up, helped me get settled in my apartment for the night and then we met up with the Nalle family at the Ukrainian restaurant here and spent the morning walking around town. Aaron is so sweet and it was wonderful to watch he, Oishin and Alina enjoy the city. Two of those three kids have lived their whole lives, up until Wednesday, in orphanages and an institution and it was truly a gift to get to see Kiev through their eyes. The Nalles have had one of the hardest adoption stories I’ve ever heard, but they are an excellent example of staying faithful to God in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. If you haven’t been following their blog you can find it at http://covenantbuilders.blogspot.com/.

After watching multiple wedding parties around the city (I really will miss those every weekend), walking through ‘souvenir-ski’ street and being a part of some weird Avon party in Independence Square (Avon is huge here) it was time for us to part company so Aaron could rest and the Clarke’s could head home to Ireland. Alina and Leeza are best friends and I’m so grateful we got to meet her

Leeza and Alina are best friends. We are hoping to keep them in touch with each other.

and her family and that we can keep the girls in touch as they grow up. And then I was alone in a foreign city and it felt strange so I decided to call Philip and let him know I’d arrived ok…only to find my cell phone had died and would not turn back on. And the internet was down in the apartment. I at least knew where the Nalles apartment was, but I also knew the building was locked and I’d have to throw rocks at their window to get their attention.  Thankfully there’s an internet cafe down the street and I was able to get a hold of Philip to call Niko and get a new phone dropped off. I’m loving my time alone, but I also like knowing I can call for help if I need it! It was about that time that I realized I’ve spent many exhausted kid-filled days wishing I could check into a hotel by myself for just one night to be alone and not have any responsibilities and that’s exactly what I had today! It’s been a wonderful break before jumping back into ‘real life.’ Tomorrow will start with a 2am wake-up call and I’ll be on my way to the airport by 3am. It’s going to be a long day, but I’m SO excited to see my babies and hug them!!

PS I also got to be part of Leeza’s first phone call. Philip was visiting with her and gave her the phone, which she loves to carry around so she can listen to the music. But today the phone was talking to her with Mama’s voice! From Philip’s laugh her face must have been pretty funny. :)

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