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September 30, 2006

Great Day All Around

Today we got to meet with the girls' personal doctor to find out details about
the girls, their health, their development, etc.  Apparently Maggie was born at
7:30 a.m., but there's some question about whether that was on 8/28 or 8/29.  I
think her new birth certificate will say 8/29, but the doctor today said she
didn't have a clue where that date came from.  They don't know for sure when Ryn
was born, but for some reason they thought it was around 6:30 in the evening. 
Who knows?

Anyway -- on to the good stuff.  She was saying that both of the girls are in
good health and pretty close to on target developmentally.  Ryn in particular is
incredibly bright and full of life.  The best stuff though was about Maggie. 
She said that all of the caregivers are talking about the amazing change in her
over the past three weeks.  She's always been very quiet, shy and basically
angry.  She was so afraid of everyone and was defensive, stubborn and sullen
most of the time.  That's why they said she was the most difficult child in the
baby house.  However, they're all amazed at how she's changed.  They say she's
just blossomed before their eyes.  She's so secure and happy and proud of her
new family.  She loves Mama, but she adores Dae Dae. 

Anyway - while the doctor was in there with us Dave entertained Maggie and sort
of held onto Ryn.  I don't know what he was saying to her or what they were
doing, but she was giggling and actually laughing out loud.  The doctor just
stared.  She said she loved that sound, but they had never heard it from her. 
Can you believe that?  They never heard her laugh -- and now she laughs all the
time.  I know she's going to need more, but honestly just plain old love has
already done that child a world of good.  The doctor said she's thrilled to be
able to tell the judge that she believes these children will truly be blessed to
join our family.

While we were busy doing paperwork and talking to the doctor, Dave was trying to
keep both girls occupied.  You'll never guess how he figured out how to do that. 
He just let them start going through the things in his pockets and then his

                                 ZhaZha Dae Dae entertaining the girls...

Doesn't this picture strike fear in your heart?  Look very closely at what Ryn's

                                   Starting awfully young on credit cards!

After we left the baby house we decided to do a little local sight-seeing, so we
drove a little past Tschuchinsk to visit Lake Boravoya.  There was so much
beauty everywhere you looked.  I almost couldn't take it all in.  As beautiful
as everything looked though, I think what really did me in was the smell.  The
weather was a little cool today and had that crisp, fall feel to it.  The leaves
are all changing colors and there's a little bit of dampness to the leaves and
the trees and the ground that smells like nothing but pure autumn.  I don't know
of any other way to describe it.  There were also a lot of pines on the side of
the mountain, and it smelled like home.  I've been homesick a few times, but
that smell was the thing that reminded me more of home than anything I've
experienced her.

I can't really do the beauty of the area justice, so I'm just going to include a
couple of pictures.  I hope you can get a little idea of our afternoon from
these pictures.