Monday, December 06, 2010

A New Life

Tonight, as we were sitting in our family room watching The Sing Off, Alina was all cuddled up next to me on the couch. She had two baby dolls and Minnie Mouse tucked in under the blanket with us.  I had leaned over to Chris and whispered for him to look at her--at how incredibly cute and content she is just hanging out with the family--when she looked up at me, smiled, and pursed her lips for a kiss.  Melt my heart. 

This past spring, right before we were getting ready to travel and meet Alina, we received an updated picture of her.  I had been so excited to get a new picture, and was really hoping to see her smiling (or with another expression that would give us a hint about her personality), and to see her with hair.  My heart sunk when I opened the attachment and found this:

March 2010
Oh goodness...there was the same blank expression, and she looked so lost and sad. I knew she needed us, and I felt an even stronger pull than ever to get to her, but at the same time I had the first doubts I had felt during the adoption process up until that point. I began to wonder how much work we had ahead of us, and whether Alina was "reachable". 

When we got to the orphanage, we saw Alina being photographed for her final file picture. The photographer came into the hallway to Alina's room just after lunch and before afternoon nap time. She stood Alina in front of the main door and quickly snapped a picture. Alina was stunned and I think a little bit scared. We guessed that she was not photographed very often at the orphanage, and immediately understood why the above picture (and her initial RR profile picture) looked the way they did, when she is so full of life.

Who would have guessed from those pictures that Alina is vibrant? She has expressions and personality to spare. She's our Funny Bunny, our very own Whirling Dervish, our Sweet, Sweet Lina.

August 2010

I've just finished Part II of my interview about our adoption of Alina with Patti on A Perfect Lily.  Check it out if you are interested in an overview of some specific issues potential adoptive parents may want to consider.

The more important reason to head over to Patti's blog is to be a part of a Christmas miracle for Olga, a beautiful child who is in dire need of a family as she is close to transfer.  Patti is holding a drawing for an iPod Touch with the hopes of raising enough money to inspire Olga's forever family to come forward for her ASAP.  Please help give Olga a chance.  Even a small donation will make a difference!  See Patti's blog for details!


  1. What a wonderful interview on Patti's blog! Wow. I think I'd started reading your blog before I knew you were in the process of adopting Alena, and so didn't know about your adoption blog. And suddenly there was another child! LOL The transformation of Alena has been astounding. What an amazing little girl! I love seeing the pics of her and Bridget together. I often think how much Samantha would love a little sister, too...

  2. You would never know it was the same child! If they really believed these children could and should be adopted, they'd do a better job of showing them off in a more positive way. What a blessing that your doubts didn't stop you. She is so beautiful and vibrant.

  3. What an amazing transformation that love brings. I liked your quote: "Love always adds, never takes away." Powerful...We're still waiting on the state:( I'm learning a lot on patience and letting go what I can't control. I enjoyed your interviews. Hugs to your family:)