Don’t give up. Don’t you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying. There is help and happiness ahead. You keep your chin up. It will be all right in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come. Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of... Jesus Christ, they come. -Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
Here are some pictures! How wonderful it is to be able to upload pictures quickly! Enjoy! Our first family photo together! We need to get some professional pictures taken soon. Mama and her adorable kids!
Grandpa ("Pa-Pa") and Daddy with the kids.
Mama & the kids at the McDonald's in Kiev, Ukraine.
The kids with their Aunt Tisha and grandparents.
Keith and his chicken nuggets and french fries which Kristina shared with him. Neither child enjoyed the food at all and were ready to eat as soon as we got home.
Keith has trouble drinking so we opted for a bottle which works really well. Kristina can drink from a cup but I prefer sippy cups when we're out of the kitchen.
Keith was tired of pictures at this point.
Sleeping beauty!Sleeping boy!
Spending time in the apartment in Kiev, Ukraine.
Mama Bigoon gave Keith a haircut - isn't it adorable? I was tired of that 1 inch hair only in the front - I heard that the long hair only in the front is a traditional haircut for Russian boys.
I put some gel in his hair to help it stick up in the front - I've waited so long to do that on a boy!
There were several balloons in the apartment when we arrived - Kristina LOVED it!
Above is a picture of Keith in the overnight train from Donets'k to Kiev, Ukraine.
When Keith gets excited he moves his arms up and down and makes this expression on his face. So funny!
When Keith gets excited or scared he puts his hand over his nose and mouth.
Mama Bigoon with her Ukrainian "grandchildren". She loved playing the part of "Babushka" (Grandma) while I stayed with her in Mariupol.
Galia had fun playing with the kids.
This is the room where Kristina slept in her orphanage (internat).
Keith loves playing with cords, especially black ones.
Below is Galia feeding Borscht to Kristina.
Below is one of the rooms from Kristina's orphanage.
Above is Kristina's bed - the one on the right and below is the main "living room".
Kristina all ready to leave the orphanage with her Mama! Below is Sister Glenn & me after the concert at Mariupol University. Sister Glenn is serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Donets'k, Ukraine. She graduated from Arizona State with a degree in music composition.
Sister Glenn & I with our accompanists.
My accompanist - she was amazing. I sang a Russian piece by Rachmaniov and I was touched by the way the accompanist played the piece by a composer from her country. She played with such emotion. I hope to experience something like that again in the future.
Keith & I in the cab on our way from Keith's orphanage!
Keith getting dressed to leave his orphanage in Artemovsk.
Rooms from Keith's orphanage.
Keith eating before we left.
Keith in his crib the morning of his leaving the orphanage FOREVER!!!
It's dark, but that is his crib in the corner next to the changing table.
Outside Keith's orphanage.
A "pizza" that I had in Donets'k. It was more like an expensive tortilla with sliced tomatoes and cheese on top.
The missionaries and I in Mama Bigoon's living room. We baked an apple pie that night and watched I LOVE LUCY. Fun times.
Br. Igor - a member of the church in Mariupol. He's an engineer and has been taking care of his mom who has severe arthritis for the past 13 years. He's one of the most giving and kind people I've ever met. He's very dedicated to the church and to his mom. He's planning to move to Montreal, Canada, in a month to work there and hopefully find some relief to his mom's suffering.
Mama Bigoon, a sister from the branch who sings/teaches opera, me, Sister Glenn - after our concert that Mama Bigoon organized after church on Sunday.
A group of members who went to see "The taming of the schrew" at the theatre. It was in Russian and I enjoyed seeing it.