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Ukraine Adoption

Can't wait to bring Andrew home!!

APRIL 7, 2002

Well after MUCH conversation between Brian and me we decided to make his name Andrew after all. So, it will not be Kyle....sorry to those of you who wrote us emails wishing Kyle well, but we will tell Andrew all about everyone....Sorry! :) We just thought that this would be better. (We spoke too soon) Tomorrow we go to the inspector's office to file paperwork on him and then meet with the attorney who will handle court and his birth certificate and his passport. Tuesday is the city council meeting where all members have to be in order to sign his paperwork. If one member is not there then we have to wait another week (next Tuesday) to try again. This region has a lot of "off the wall" laws. But we will do what we have to do. Andrew is getting use to us now, today we taught him to say "Daddy" and he did pretty well. We have ALOT to work on when we come home, it is very hard here since everyone speaks in Russian to him and that is how he speaks too. We went to the market to buy him clothes and shoes and underwear today and we did really well. Two outfits, two pairs of shoes, four pairs of underwear a t- shirt and a snow suit...all for just about 400 hyrvna (pronounced grivna). In American dollars all of this would have only cost us about $60. Not really that bad for all we got. Anyway, today was a busy day, and the rest of the week will only be getting busier. I am homesick!!! Enough for today, we will try to write again tomorrow...we never know what each day will bring. All that we know is that we get to see Andrew everyday at least for and hour and a half. (HE LOVES COOKIES!!) Much love to all back home- thank you for your emails so far...keep them coming! (BIG SMILES FROM BOTH BRIAN AND ME!!)

APRIL 13, 2002

Well it seems that Yahoo is upset with all the traffic I have had on my website, so I tried changing some things around and lost the past couple of updates...my apologies. Anyway, city council held their meeting, and we are scheduled to go to court on Monday at 10am!! Hopefully we will only have court this one day. Apparently the judge in this region is very strict and may require some things that we will have to get, but hopefully we have thought of everything. After court, we will head back to the hotel to get our bags, then Nikolai (the driver from Kiev) will come pick us up and then go pick up Andrew at the orphanage and head to Kiev for a couple of days then its off to Warsaw, Poland then HOME!!! The weather is getting nicer! Like low 60's here, nicer than it was last week. Today is Sergei's birthday, so we took him to the market and bought him a pair of pants for court and he will wear one of Brian's dress shirts and ties so that he will look nice. (He only brought with him the clothes he has on his back.....I guess that makes for VERY easy packing!) Anyway, we are going to dinner now, so I will try to update again tomorrow! (We will put another picture of us on tomorrow!!) Love to all!!

APRIL 14, 2002

No update today. We celebrated Sergei's 27th birthday last night at the bar in the hotel. I had 2 beers, and the other 7 people...Brian included drank 3 bottles of Russian cognac. (VERY STRONG) Needless to say, Sergei and Brian were not feeling too good this morning. But oh well...it was a lot of fun. (Wait till you see the pictures I took!) Anyway, we are off to get dinner at Grand Pizza now. This will probably be my last update from Kirovohrad, and I am not sure if we will be able to find a place back in Kiev. Keep checking, and if there are updates then I guess we found an internet cafe. Can't wait to bring Andrew home!!

APRIL 16, 2001

Sorry for no update yesterday (court day). We woke up early and had breakfast as usual with Sergei then met at the attorney's office to go over a few things, then we took a cab to court. We arrived on schedule at 10 am, but here time does not matter. The judge made us (and another family from Texas) wait. So we waited till around 100:15 then the other family went first. (Thank God!) The judge was very picky about their documents and made them go get other copies of this past year’s tax returns. Then it was our turn. I think he liked us better anyway because we were extremely professional looking (like the judge was) and the other couple was very casual. We were in session about a half hour and he had some questions about some of our documents as well, but said that we would take a recess till 2pm. So we left and had lunch and came back. When we came back the judge came in and asked us a few more questions and left to make his decision. 20 minutes later he came back and read his decision that the adoption would be executed immediately! The attorney smiled at me from across the room and I knew what was being said at that point. I was okay, until the attorney came over to congratulate us and I lost it. I cried so hard, and then Brian cried hard. We hugged everyone, even the family from Texas was there hearing the decision. (We've made a lot of friends here!) So we left court and headed back to the hotel to pack our things and then headed to the orphanage to pick up Andrew! We took photos of him with us and the orphanage director and a lot of other photos too. Andrew seemed very happy! When we were walking out of the orphanage, one of his favorite care takers saw us leaving and ran to hug Andrew. She has been at the orphanage since Andrew came (back when he was born) and was with him throughout two surgeries that he has already had. She started to cry a lot, and then so did I. She hugged me and told Andrew to make sure he writes her and sends her photos! We came back to the hotel to wait for Nikolai who was driving from Kiev to pick us up for the final ride back to Kiev!!! We arrived back in Kiev last night around 11:30 and had to stay at the Bratislava hotel because the guest flat was being occupied, so we had a welcoming committee of like 8 people. It was so nice. They helped us get settled and then we got ready for bed. Andrew's first night with his new mommy and daddy. We got ready for bed (the room had 3 single beds) and I went to put Andrew in his bed and he just lay down and started to cry. It broke my heart knowing that he didn't know what was going on. So I held him and he and I just cried together. He stopped and got in bed with me for 5 minutes then I got up and tried to put him in his again and he slept there all night. Today he had us up at 6:30 which was fine, so we took showers (Andrew thought that was fun) and had breakfast. (Andrew ate mine and his!) We then just spent the day waiting for Lena to come with Nikolai to take us to the guest flat (where we are now). Once we arrived and got settled, we took Andrew to McDonald's for the first time, and actually it tasted just like home!!!!!!!!!!! I think Brian and I devoured our food in a matter of seconds! (And brought more to bring back for dinner!) We did a little site seeing today, saw the St. Andrew's Cathedral (how funny!) And how breathtakingly beautiful. I took lots of pictures. So I am about to sign off now...we have a son, we are very happy! Tomorrow we go to the doctor for his medical exam, then the rest of the day is free, Thursday we go to the US Embassy here in Kiev and then fly out that afternoon to Prague, Czech Republic then to Warsaw. (There were no direct flights) So our appt at the US Embassy for Andrew's visa is Friday at 10:45 am. We are hoping to catch a flight home Friday night or Saturday morning!! (That would be so ideal for us all!) Anyway.....whew.......Good bye for now, we will try to update again tomorrow with more specifics!! LOVE TO ALL FROM ALL THE RONEY'S...even Andrew!! (It is official...Andrew Lawrence Roney)

OUR LAST UPDATE!!

Today is Wednesday and we had an appointment at the hospital for Andrew's final check up here. It was good. Tomorrow we will go to the US Embassy here in Kiev for the final paperwork to take him out of the country. Then we are off to the airport! We fly out at 3pm to Prague then to Warsaw. We will be in Warsaw until very early Saturday morning when we will fly out at 6:05 am to Amsterdam, Netherlands (we had to change airlines because Austrian did not have seats available for all of us till sometime next week and we absolutely refuse to stay here any longer!!) So we will fly Northwest KLM home and will arrive in Washington Dulles at 2pm your time Saturday afternoon. GOD- THANK YOU!!!! At least that is what stands as of now, but things change very fast around here... :( Anyway, Andrew is doing better with mommy and daddy; he had his first accident today and fell off of a not so sturdy chair here at our flat eating a banana. (The chairs here are like two pieces of press board stuck together...it fell apart...) Anyway, he cried...of course and has bruises now on his arms, but he is fine! WHEW! He is such a lover! So by the time this is all said and done, we will have been in the USA, Austria, Ukraine (two cities), Prague, Poland, and Netherlands! Wow, that's a lot for only two weeks and two days! We are very tired, but living off of pure adrenaline! Love is grand! So, good bye from Ukraine, this is our last night here, and we will not have any where to update everyone from anywhere else. We will be home Saturday!!! And we can't wait for everyone to meet Andrew! Love, Laurie, Brian and Andrew!

We're home!

Our flight home was great, Andrew ran around the airport in Kiev like a mad man, and then finally when we got on the plane he was fine! (Thank God!) We arrived in Vienna, Austria (Austrian Airlines finally confirmed our original plans so we ended up canceling the arrangements with KLM) Vienna was good; actually it was better than good because we were one step closer to home!! I saw the sign that had our flight number and it said Washington, DC and my smile could not have been any bigger!! :) We were in Vienna an hour so we hit the "duty free" store and bought some animal crackers for Andrew. (Then helped with his ears popping on the plane). We finally got on the plane and took off to Washington... (9 1/2 hours) The flight wasn't that bad, we each had our own personal TV on the back of the chair in front of us and we had 5 movies to choose from, video games, and cameras on the bottom of the plane to see below where we were flying and a camera from the cockpit looking out the front window! (It was really neat watching us take off and land from that point of view). Anyway, Andrew watched Pocahontas the entire way home (except for when he was sleeping off the children's Tylenol I gave him to help him sleep... :) He did really well considering how long we were on the plane. He had to go toalet (bathroom in Russian) so I took him and he has a thing for flushing himself...well in this airplane, the flusher is EXTREMELY loud and if he could have crawled inside of me he would have. It scared the living crapola out of him...not literally! So the rest of the flight every time I asked him if he had to go the bathroom of course he said no. (He went anyway). We landed in Washington, DC around 3:10pm Saturday, went through Passport control and had to take Andrew's papers to immigration. We went through there fine too. He started pointing to his tummy and I asked if he had to go potty and he said yes, so we went. On our way walking over to customs for final "clearance" he puked ALL OVER me, and him. So I guess that's why he was holding his tummy. Oh well, I took it with a grain of salt, we cleaned up and walked to get our bags and out the big door to many people waiting for all kinds of family! We found Pop pop and Grandmom and Mimi and Pop, and everyone was so very happy to see us and to meet Andrew! We did our greetings and ran my parents back to there house to get their car then they came to our house. When we got to our house there was a huge sign that said "WELCOME HOME" and a little bicycle for Andrew sitting out front. He immediately got out and went for the bike! He loves it!! (A gift from Grandmom and Pop pop!). Shortly after that, Brian's Aunt Jae and Uncle Mike from Pittsburgh and Pat and Don Bowie (friends of Brian's parents) and my sister came over for a party at our house. Brian and I were still working off of adrenaline! Everyone left and our friends Keith and Kelly came over with their new baby Owen and then our neighbors came over. Finally around 11:30 we all went to bed. Andrew fell asleep in our bed and at 1 am I put him in his. He slept till 8:45 this morning. That was good considering the fact that today we had MANY more people over all day from 1pm till 9:30 tonight. Brian and I are so completely exhausted, I lost it tonight and I don't know why, every emotion is just coming out from all the tiredness and newness to everything. Things will be fine and they will get better. Andrew is doing really well picking up English, but we still have a lot to work on. I am going to bed now, so good night to all, and thank you to everyone for your prayers and thoughts throughout this entire process. We couldn't have done it without the help of our wonderful family and friends! We love you all!!!

With much love,

The Roney's

Read more about Andrew and the Roney's at:
www.geocities.com/theroneyfamily/TheRoneyFamilyAdoption.html

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