Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Lexi's getting baptized

Lexi has decided to get baptized this Friday, February 20th at 6:30 pm. The Centerville Stake Center address is 950 North Main Street in Centerville. All of our family and friends are welcome and invited to attend. We appreciate your support and look forward to seeing you on Friday!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Trevor and Burgs - February 12, 2009

Fun pictures from the wedding!

Ryan, Shea, Trevor, Lexi and Derek at the wedding

Trevor and Burgundy are married!

On Thursday, February 12th Trevor and Burgundy were married in the Bountiful Utah Temple. On Wednesday evening we had a nice wedding dinner with lots of family and friends. We're fotunate to have so many family members and good friends that helped us make this a great event.

Here is also a link to a short video that was produced Thursday by a terrific videograper named David Perry. Enjoy...

Sunday, January 18, 2009

3 Months and counting...

Lexi has been home with us now for just over 3 months! She is doing very well. She continues to have new experiences and do quite well in school. Ashlie and Shea helped Lexi overcome her fear of water and have taught her how to swim! She now asks if we can go swimming at our pool almost every day :)
Lexi has also gone to her first Jazz game and loved the movie "Twilight". In fact, she is now reading "Twilight" in English and understands 90%+ of what she's reading after only 3 months in the country. She gave an oral report in her English class this week about that book highlighting what she has been reading. Her English teacher described her presentation as "amazing' when she learned that Lexi has only been here for such a short period of time.

Christmas at the Cabin

We spent Christmas this year at our cabin in Heber. We had all of our family together (9 of us now with Trevor's fiance Burgundy) and had a terrific time! Some of the highlights were a horse drawn sleigh ride and Cowboy Grub Dinner in Park City, sledding at the cabin, new pajamas for everyone and just spending time together while it showed 2 feet outside.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Trevor and Burgundy are engaged!

Trevor and Burgundy were officially engaged this past Friday night at our cabin! You can read all about it at their new blog site http://www.burgsandtrev.blogspot.com/ The big date is February 12th in the Bountiful Temple. We are very excited to have Burgs join our family! The family is really starting to grow.

Monday, November 3, 2008

One Month Today!

We celebrated Lexi's one month anniversay of arriving here in Utah to join our family. A great reason for Lexi and Derek to celebrate with an ice cream cake from DQ :)

The family keeps growing

It was FUN to have everyone home for Halloween weekend. Left to Right - Trevor and his girlfriend Burgundy, Ryan and his wife Ashlie, Shea holding "Jack", Lexi, and Derek.

Pumpkin Carving

Lexi was proud of the first pumpkin she had carved. Halloween is a new holiday for her to experience.

First Date

Lexi went on her first date to the Harvest Dance at Viewmont High School with Trevor Evans who is a good friend with Derek. It was just before Halloween and they dressed up as Pirates. She was a little nervous because of the language barrier but they had a great time. She was all smiles when she got back that night!

A Schnoodle joins the family!

Lexi is holding her new dog she named Jack. He is a Schnoodle which is a cross between a Schnauzer and a Poodle. He's 8 weeks old and a BIG surprise given to Lexi by her Sisters Shea and Ashlie.

Lexi and Alisha on ATV's for the first time!

We showed Lexi and her friend Alisha how to ride ATV's. Lexi had never been on an ATV before. She was quite nervous at first but learned how to ride it by herself before long!

Lexi and Alisha at the cabin

Lexi invited Alisha to spend the night at our cabin. Alisha was her best friend from Sumy Ukraine where they shared a room in the same orphanage for over 5 years. Alisha has been adopted by a family in SLC a year ago. They have really enjoyed seeing each other again after being apart for a year and a half.

The new look!

Lexi decided to get her hair cut and colored the first week home. This picture was taken right after the haircut. She was very happy the way it turned out.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

We made it home!

Our trip home from Kiev to SLC was successful! Here's a picture of Lexi on the 10 hour flight from Kiev to JFK. Once there we passed through customs and immigration. Once we landed in New York City, Lexi automatically becomes a US Citizen. They had to do a finger print and have her sign a document and then we rushed to get our bags checked back in to our connecting flight to SLC.

The top picture is the welcome home banner our kids put together for Lexi :)

The middle picture is a great shot of all of our kids! Left to right - Derek, Ryan, Ashlie (Ryan's wife), Lexi, Shea, Trevor, and Burgundy (Trevor's girlfriend)
It's great to all be back together again. We're really looking forward to having Lexi join our family. Thanks to everyone for your kind messages and support along the way. It's been a terrific journey.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Packing our bags!

We had a nice visit with Vladimir and his wife Valeria tonight in our apartment. They stopped by to say "goodbye" since we are leaving for home first thing in the morning. This is a picture of Valeria, Lexi, Vladimir and Natalie. Vladimir and Natalie have been wonderful people to work with through the adoption process. They really care about the children and work hard to make sure you are well taken care of and everything goes smoothly with all aspects of the adoption. We are very grateful for their efforts.

The next blog entry should be from home! :) We are schedule to arrive back in SLC Monday night around 7:15 pm on Delta airlines.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Bowling in Kiev

We found a really nice bowling alley in Kiev this afternoon and took her bowling for the second time in her life. Apparently she want bowling one time while visiting a family in France a few years ago. She did very well considering she's really not been exposed much to it. You pay for bowling by the hour here so everyone gets two of the same ball so they can hurry and throw the second ball before your first ball comes back to get more bowling completed :) I wondered why there were so many balls on the rack at first but I quickly learned the reason. The cost was a little over $5 per hour per person. That's a fair price but it's considered a luxury here because that is very expensive for the average person.

Museum of the Great Patriotic War

The National Museum of the History of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 is a memorial complex commemorating the Great Patriotic War located in the southern outskirts of the Pechersk district of Kiev on the hills on the right-bank of the Dnieper River.

It is one of the largest museums in Ukraine (over 300 thousand exhibits) centered around the 205 ft. tall Motherland statue, which has become one of the best recognized landmarks of Kiev.

Lexi borrowed Natalie's sunglasses for this fun photo!

St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery

St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery is a functioning monastery in Kiev. The monastery is located on the Western side of the Dnieper River. Originally built in the middle ages. There is a banner up on the entrance indicating 2008 is the 900th anniversary of its existence! The exterior of the structure was rebuilt in the Ukrainian Baroque style in the 18th century while the interior remained in its original Byzantine style. The cathedral was demolished by the Soviet authorities in the 1930s, but was recently reconstructed after Ukraine gained its independence in 1991.

Matrioshka Dolls

We visited a few places in Kiev together again today. I'll attach a few pictures of the places we visited. This is a picture of a street vendor we visited that was selling the traditional Russian and Ukraine Matrioshka Dolls. There are 5-20 dolls inside each other starting with a larger figure and going down to a very small wooden figure when you open them all up. There are hundreds of street vendors selling souvenirs.

Lexi and Natalie

Lexi and Natalie at the Friendship of Nations Arc. Natalie has been a tremendous help with Lexi. She is a terrific interpreter and has started teaching Lexi English as well. It will provide a good start for Lexi's experience at home when we'll have nobody to speak Russian with her!

Kiev Independence Square at night

I took these pictures last night while we were visiting Independence Square in downtown Kiev. It was a beautiful evening and thousands of people were outside enjoying the weather. I've been amazed at the number of people who are outside and moving around at any given time of the day. The subway metro system is FULL of people almost anytime we have used it. It's a fascinating system that runs at least 600-800 feet under the ground. It takes several minutes just to ride the escalators down to the entry point for the trains. The trains also run in each direction constantly. The most we've had to wait for a train is less than 2 minutes. They really know how to move people around the city!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Lexi and Todd

Natalie took this picture of us while we were visiting the Friednship of Nations Arc. Behind us is the Dnipro river and lots of apartments on the left bank of Kiev.

Friendship of Nations Arc

Friendship of Nations Arc A highly visible monument above the Dnipro River. This arch rises above this Soviet-era monument celebrating the joining of Ukraine and Russia in 1653 A.D.

Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kiev

I took this picture from the top of the 150 foot Bell Tower inside the cathedral grounds. This beautiful building was first started in the year 1020.

Sites of Kiev

We spent the afternoon walking around Kiev and seeing some beautiful sites. The top picture is an interesting building by the water front where we went for a boat ride. The middle picture is what they call "The Golden Gate" This fortified gate defended the city in the 12th century. The bottom picture is the Kiev Opera House built in the summer of 1867. There are several historic sites in Kiev all easily accessible via walking or the efficient metro system.