Thursday, August 30, 2012

Happy Gotcha Day, Andrei!

And the parade of "Gotcha" days continues.  One year ago today, my mother and I had our last ride to the Artem Baby Home in the small village of Zavodskoy to pick up little Andrei.  The ten-day waiting period was over.  From that point on we were homeward bound.  We still had a day or two left in Vlad, then a week in Moscow, but we were eager to get Andrei home to his Mama (who had returned home the day after court).  I can't believe it's been a year since I picked up my son.  You haven't grown so much in size, Andrei, but you've grown in so many other ways.  You definitely bring adventure, comedy, entertainment and great joy into our family!  We love you, buddy!



About a week before Gotcha Day! 

 Just a few days before Gotcha Day

Gotcha Day with Pop & MeMe

Andrei this past weekend

Andrei with Mom & Sergei - First Day of School

At the Festival of Nations in St. Louis with Olga, our exchange student

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Happy Gotcha Day, Slav!

Four years ago today, August 25th, we went to court in Vladivostok, hoping to become parents to Slav and Sergei.  We received a positive conclusion at court and went to Slav's orphanage that afternoon to pick him up.  Due to the ten-day waiting period, we were not able to pick up Sergei until September 5th.  Slav, you've grown so much in so many ways these past four years.  Happy Gotcha Day, we love you!

Mom & Pop

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

We're still here...

Hey Adoption Blog World!  The Fritsches are still here.  Can you believe that one year ago yesterday, we left for Vladivostok to to go to court and bring home Andrei?  The year has gone by very quickly.  Just last week we sent off our apostilled one-year post-placement report.  Andrei is doing very well.  Language has progressed nicely.  Tomorrow he begins pre-school, which will help further his language skills as well as many other things.  He hasn't put on a lot of weight over the year since we brought him home, but the doctor isn't overly concerned yet at this point.  His body mass is good and he is growing.  We are also doing some things with his diet to try and build up his weight.

Last week our new exchange student, Olya, arrived from Cheboksary, Russia.  As you've seen in previous posts, we've hosted an exchange student before.  We find it an excellent way to give our boys a connection to the country of their birth.  Olya is doing quite well so far.  She seems to have adjusted well to the 9-hour time difference.  She is already making friends and school hasn't even started yet.  She brought us presents from Russia, t-shirts, hats, and most important of all, candy!  She will be with us for the entire school year.  We look forward to a wonderful year with Olya as part of our family.  On her second day here she did a presentation about Russia for the kids at our church's daycare.  She wore a traditional Russian costume and even sang and danced.

The students in this program are the future leaders of their countries.  As far as Russia goes, one of the benefits of having a Russian exchange student in our home is that Russian citizens have this great opportunity to see that the children adopted by American families are loved and well cared for.  There is still time to host a student.  American Councils for International Education still has around twenty students to place.  The students are from all over the world, not just Russia.  E-mail us if you are interested and have questions.

This summer we traveled to Texas to see family and did some fun things at other places close to home.  Here are some pics from our fun-filled summer...