Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas from Kyrgyzstan

Christmas morning started out with a beautiful sunrise today as we drove toward Tokmok. I don't think I could have dreamed of a better Christmas present than our son! How can any future Christmas ever compete with this one? Of course, next Christmas, when he's hopefully home safely in Denver with us will be pretty awesome too. I can't wait to take him to see Santa, hang a stocking for him, go sledding, decorate Christmas cookies, put up the tree together, sing Christmas carols, and just be together as a forever family.
When we first arrived at the orphanage this morning, the caretakers explained that he had been sick the day before. From what we could gather, he was hot (had a fever?) and his throat was red (sore?). We know he's been congested, but we didn't know if that was normal for him. The air in the cities here is extremely smoggy and polluted, so we worry about his lungs and breathing. Time to get him home to some fresh Colorado mountain air! An interesting belief here is that if you drink something cold or expose your throat area to cold air, you will get sick. So they put a scarf on our boy before going outside today, and they double-checked the juice box we gave him to make sure it was room temperature.

We spent the morning playing with our boy's usual favorites (cars, blocks, shapes, pretend food, doctor, etc.), along with some new things like stickers, looking in the mirror, talking on a toy cell phone, and hitting a balloon. His Christmas present was a little toy piano, which he had fun playing for awhile. We taught him to clink his cup with ours when we say "Cheers," and when we quack like a duck and flap our arms, he does the cutest shoulder shrugging thing. He's definitely getting more comfortable with us and testing some limits. We had to say "nyet" (no) a few times and take away a toy or two when he started to hit things! But he's still the sweetest little thing and loves to give hugs and giggle. We can't believe our time with him on this trip is already more than half over. 

We spent the afternoon at our in-country coordinator's house in Bishkek having a Kyrgyz Christmas feast. The Kyrgyz do not let you go hungry! We had all of the usual favorites (tea, lapyoshka, soup, plov, fruit, etc.). It was so delicious, and it was awesome to spend the holiday with the other couples who are in Kyrgyzstan for their bonding visits as well. In the picture, you can see Song and Darren, who are adopting a baby girl from the orphanage where our son lives. Saule is our coordinator, and her husband is standing next to her. Haley and Piyush are adopting a little girl from another orphanage, but they are staying at the same hotel as us. It's been awesome having others to share the journey with us. We're hoping that our second and third visits can be coordinated together as well!

Merry Christmas to all. We hope yours is as happy as ours!

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