Month: August 2005

  • I wish y'all could hear Max, it's too funny.  He's taking a bath
    (a bubble bath, in fact) and I've given him some
    stuff to play with....he's having a marvelous time!  What is so
    precious is how he sings in the tub and sings with gusto

    You know, for a child not yet six years old, he has quite the
    repetoire, from what I can tell as he sings as he plays on the electric
    keyboard, and as he strums Dmitry's guitar.  He is truly quite musically gifted, I'm convinced.

    Oh, and the cats are an endless source of fascination and amusement for
    Max.  OTOH, one feels compassion for the furry objects of his
    relentless, enthusiastic attention, but then, he's certainly enlivened
    their lives, which are normally a bit on the dull side.  This
    evening he noticed  --  doubtless to poor Zeus's
    mortification  --  that cat making use of the, er,
    facilities, if you get my drift.  Max charged in to tell us all
    about it, complete with graphic demonstration of precisely what the cat was doing. 

    If cats could blush, Zeus would have been rosy as a beet.

    The entertainment continued even after she (yes, Zeus is a "she") left
    the litter box, for it's one of those electric, self-cleaning litter
    boxes, and once it kicked into action Max zoomed into high gear
    himself, running into the living room shrieking "Mama!  Mama!" and
    begging me to come see the miraculous event in the other room (okay,
    everything after "Mama" was in Russian, but trust me, his meaning was

    Oh, and while Dmitry, Max and I were at Wal-Mart this afternoon I put
    Max in one of those buggies that has an attached seating area for 2-6
    years olds, if you know the type of thing I mean.  Max was
    enchanted and wound up spending most of the shopping trip standing up
    on one of the seats, facing forward with his arms straight out at his
    side.  It was that famous scene from "Titanic" come to life, no

  • Don had what we hope was a good idea, and that was to take Mr. 100 MPH to the playground in an effort to wear him down and out.

    Not sure how well this is gonna work out, but he did have a good time. 


    Of course Dmitry was there, too. 

    Don and Dmitry waiting for time to go.

  • Whoosh.  Maxim is certainly an active little critter and no mistake. 

    He can be very sweet and sharing, but will also take that which doesn't
    belong to him (cameras, sunglasses, photographs, etc.) and refuse to
    give them back.  He doesn't listen worth a flip to either English or
    Russian, and about that much talked-about afternoon nap......HA! 
    Fat chance.  And he's aggressive.  He is also musical, which
    is a plus.  Can sing little songs, for instance, and loves
    anything that makes music.  Also cars.  Like virtually every
    Russian boy I've ever met, he's car mad. 

    A few pictures from this morning:

    He did this until he discovered the scissors with the wavy and other
    fancy edges, then it was all over.  I had to fetch poor little
    Sasha - on the other side of the table - some more paper from another
    table, since Max cut every piece of the construction paper at
    ours.  Didn't DO anything much with it....he just likes to

    [shyly]  I made a
    rather attractive heart, composed of three different colored and sized
    hearts cut out by one of those pairs of scissors, with stickers nicely
    placed.  Was going to bring it home and maybe use it for a
    scrapbook page about Max, only he spilt water all over it. 

    Here's the whole crew.  That's Max on the middle row, second from
    the right, and Viktor and Vladimir in the middle of the top row, with
    Viktor looking at the camera.  Darling boys!  What I got as
    much of a kick out of as the assembled children were the Papparazzi

    Dmitry finally worked up the nerve to walk over and introduce himself
    to Viktor, starting with the obligatory Russian Manly Handshake. 
    They're big on Manly Handshakes.  ;^)  Then it was down to

    The two boys have quite a bit in common, and got along well. 

    After lunch it was off to Dillards, where the manager generously provides an outfit for each child, gratis.  Here's Dmitry taking steps to make sure Mr. Out-Of-Control doesn't get squashed by a car:

    I fear I've changed my mind about getting Max together with the
    grandkids for play dates, considering how obstinate and aggressive he
    can be.  :^(  Since a child is normally only given one
    opportunity to come on an adoption camp trip, it's a shame the Powers
    That Be at this orphanage sent Max over at such a young age. 
    There's no doubt in my mind that two or three years will make a world
    of difference in him, making him far more likely to bond with a
    potential adoptive family.  Right now he'd need a young couple
    with enormous amounts of time, patience and energy to devote to
    him.  If anyone knows anyone like that, urge 'em to give Gladney a

    If it's before Sunday evening, contact me via email, or Gladney via phone, and we'll get Max together with them.

  • Oy vey, and likewise aye carumba! 

    Having a five year old Russian boy in residence who can't read isn't the same as a teenage Russian boy who can read.  Life is much easier when one can use the online translator to show what you want to say.

    Here's Maxim:

    At the Waybourns last night with Vika, our adoption trip translator, Laura, and Lucas.

    Updated photo of the Russian Federation. 

    Vika with Lucas.

    Dan with the Waybourns "puppy," Maggie.  Maxim was torn between terror and fascination when it came to the "coboka".

    We all headed to the Russian restaurant for dinner, where Don joined
    us, prompting Dmitry to observe it'd taken nearly two years but Pops was finally eating there. ;^)

    This is one busy little boy, who is determined to make the cats play
    with him.  Poor Boots and Zeus!  Dmitry is being darling with
    him, playing with him and talking with him.  Max was so wound up
    last night it took my sitting in a chair next to his bed in the dark,
    head resting on my folded arms, until finally I heard what I hoped to
    hear....a yawn.  Then another!  He conked out about

    And was up bright an early at 7:15 this morning!  Dmitry is still
    sound asleep, the lucky duck.  (The principal of his school gave
    permission for him to miss today and tomorrow so as to spend time with
    Max, wasn't that kind?)  We're to be at Gladney at 10 a.m. for
    crafts, then go to Dillards to get the kids new outfits.  We're on
    our own after that until we take him to the hotel Sunday evening.

  • This afternoon the eagerly awaited birthday package arrived from Svetlana:

    Those are miniature flags of Chuvashia (the region Dmitry's from) and Cheboksary (the capital of Chuvashia).

    There was also a packet of Cheboksary postcards.  It was a delightful birthday present for an ol' Chuvashian boy. 

  • Hey, I get my shot at hosting after all. 

    Okay, it's not 13 and 9 year old's a 5 year old boy. 

    Apparently a rather hyperactive 5 year old boy.  Well, where the LORD gives challenges He also gives the strength to meet them, so I shan't worry. 

    Heck, on Saturday I'll see about getting him with Bethie and
    Brianna....wear that poor little Russian boy out, they will.  I'll
    pit my granddaughters against any five year old boy on the planet when it comes to noisily rushing around for no particular reason. 

    What a mercy I'd already arranged to mind my poppets, Meredith and
    Margaret, tomorrow morning, else I'd have been stuck going to the zoo
    in the ferocious August heat. 

    Now I'll fetch him from Gladney about 2 p.m.

    BTW, Elaine....there'll be one more at the party on Sunday, okay? 

  • That's a startling bit of information....

    According to an article at CNN regarding the death of a gas station
    owner as he attempted to stop a drive-off thief, even though fuel
    prices are high, the profit margin is so low the deceased would have
    had to sell an additional 5,200 gallons of gas to cover the cost of the $52 theft. 

    Killed for a tank of gasoline.  What a horrible thing to have happen. 

  • Russell Moore is a Big Dog at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in
    Louisville, Kentucky, and also the fond father of two sons adopted from
    Russia:  Russia's Orphans and the Father of the Fatherless

    This is a serious threat, the push by some in the Russian Duma to shut
    down foreign adoptions entirely.  An article at a Russian news
    site by Olga Sobolevskaya:  Will Russia ban foreign adoptions?

    And from the same site:  Parliament committee proposes banning foreign adoptions

  • You know who's staying in those dorms?  I'll tell you who's staying in those dorms.

    Freshmen, that's who.

    Got a piece of mail (what the point is, though, this late in the month,
    I don't know) from Tech urging incoming freshmen to not live
    off-campus, citing the higher GPA for those who reside on-campus.

    What intrigued me was the comparison of numbers by year (it doesn't
    specify, but I'm assuming this is for last year or the year prior):

    On campus  -  3,834
    Off campus  -  1,817

    On campus  -     807
    Off campus  -  4,760

    On campus  -     348
    Off campus  -  4,882

    On campus  -     212
    Off campus  -  6,593

    That's an anstonishing disproportion after the first year! 

  • Charles is now in residence at Texas Tech's Weymouth Hall, Don and I
    having driven to Lubbock late Saturday, and Charles following yesterday

    We didn't want to do a to-and-from in one day, and he had a concert to
    attend with friends on Saturday night, so drove up yesterday morning.

    The official entrance to Texas Tech, which is also the alma mater of my
    sister, Elaine, as well as where my brother, Louis, earned his law

    The Red Raider football stadium.  Don says they're finally getting some national recognition.

    A sneak peek with my camera phone at Charles waiting for the elevator
    so as to take some stuff up to his ninth floor dorm room.  It took
    a looong time to try to get the stuff from the van to the room, seeing
    as how each student was permitted only thirty minutes in the close-in
    parking for this task, and most of them - like Charles - had TV's,
    microwaves, refrigerators, and computers in addition to bedding and
    clothing, and there was only one elevator working, so the lines tended
    to be lengthy and the wait interminable.

    Why some enterprising student organization such as a fraternity doesn't
    arrange to shuttle an incoming student's goods from car to room for a
    reasonable fee, beats me.  Our definition of "reasonable" would
    have been generous yesterday, believe me.  They're leaving serious
    money on the table.  Don and I worked it out on the drive home . .
    . they'd get access to the dorm rooms either before or after (or maybe
    both) the "public" access, reservations would be made in advance,
    they'd have flatbeds such as department stores use, and would meet the
    student and his family in the close-in parking lot, then unload the
    stuff in the car(s) onto the flatbed and haul it up to the room and
    unload it.

    I'd have paid from fifty to a hundred bucks for such service.

    Charles felt I'd used up my photo opportunities on Friday evening at
    his send-off party, so I don't have any decent pictures of him, drat
    it.  Most depressing, but not unexpected.  He met up with a
    friend he made at the New Student Orientation three weeks ago, Bobby,
    and this is them getting into Charles' car so they could go get him his
    parking permit....unfortunately Charles' leg is all that's visible:

    Bobby seemed quite nice, BTW.  It was a trifle dampening having
    him present as we made our farewells to our son, but that's life.

    BTW, Dmitry was informed last night that I've come up with a new "life
    plan" for him......he's to stay at home and be a support and comfort to
    his mama, and not to go traipsing off to outlandish places like