Thanks to everyone for the kind words and prayers for the frustrations and struggles we are having. My bad attitude from yesterday was contagious and now Tim is feeling discouraged and frustrated. It is so hard not to compare this adoption trip with Reagan's and we find ourselves saying "Well, in China..." followed by how much better that experience was. I feel guilty that we are not enjoying Riga more, since our daughters are from here, but honestly, I can see why they want out. Nothing good has happened to them here (until now!!) and since they have had a taste of life in America they are ready to leave. I think it is putting us all in a bad mood. The girls get restless, and for good reason. No matter how much stuff we brought to do, staying in an apartment all day long is torture!
We walked to the store today, it was very cold. The wind just cuts through you. The rest of the day was spent working the puzzle Andrea gave us, coloring, watching Cartoon Network, and some laundry. I really miss my dryer :( We have strung a clothes line up in addition to the drying rack that was here and every towel bar is also being used. I am learning to appreciate my appliances at home. The dishwasher doesn't work here (only the one named Kristen) and there is only one tiny sink in the kitchen, so I have to wash everything and leave it in the sink, then drain the water and rinse everything. It's a pain and literally a pain in the back because the sink sits nearly in the corner of the counter, so you have to stand at a weird angle to use it. I know things could be so much worse, so I should really suck it up and move on...
We had a talk tonight with the girls about a few issues we are having. The first is that they threw little tantrums today when we told them (after a few hours) that we were changing the channel to something besides cartoon network. It is such a fine line of letting them do what they want and keeping some kind of picture of what normal will be like. We do not let Ryleigh and Reagan watch tv all day, so we want to limit that here, plus it is so, so, so annoying to listen to Russian cartoons. The girls mumble stuff in Latvian and walk away when they are mad. Instance #2 was at 10:45, we told them that bedtime was going to be 11:30, so they had 45 minutes. They didn't understand and thought we meant right then, so they stormed out of the room, mumbling something (probably cuss words). Tim and I talked about it and decided it was time for a heart to heart. So with the help of our dictionary, we talked to them about appropriate ways to show emotions when you are a part of a family. We tried to explain that there will be times that we make them mad, but they can't be disrespectful and that we will always love them, even if they are in trouble. We told them that Ryleigh and Reagan have rules and when they don't follow them they get in trouble, but we still love them. I hope that they understand.
We talked with them about not having their MP3 players on all the time because that is not helping them learn to talk to us. We are not letting them take them tomorrow to Jurmala. I think there is a time and a place for those gadgets and we should have been smarter about setting rules.
Their English is improving every day and we want to keep encouraging them. I know that it is hard for them, in fact, I can't even imagine the difficulties!
We had a great, long talk with the little girls, my parents, sister, and niece today. There was a very clear connection with the video and audio. I love seeing Ryleigh and Reagan, I felt like I could reach out and squeeze them through the computer! They are having tons of fun and we are thankful for that. I can't imagine them being here, too, it would be even harder than being away from them. Only 10 more full days here! Thank God.
I listened to last week's sermon on the SHCC website and that made me feel much closer to home. Terry even mentioned us! I wish I could have heard the music, too, I miss hearing Ryan lead worship! It's so weird to be away from all the normal things in life. I hope everything is running smoothly at Bright Beginnings! I haven't heard otherwise, so I will assume that things are going well. I miss everyone so much! I am so used to seeing the same group of people everyday, it's strange to not know what is going on with everyone... especially the ones who are not on Facebook (Bridget) or don't ever post anything (Trisha)!
Tim and I had some crazy laughter earlier, I am talking rolling on the floor with tears in my eyes laughing. He was on FB and Caleb Alwardt had posted something about teaching Sunday School next week. Tim was reading what they were saying back and forth and I made a grouchy comment about "following God's will gets you to Latvia where you get food poisoning from meat jello." One funny comment led to another and we were dying laughing. I think we are going slightly insane here, but it was nice to laugh so hard. The girls just stared at us and rolled their eyes!
Well, I better sign off for now, it is late and hopefully we have a big day tomorrow. It would be nice to be gone ALL day and eat some normal food and see something unique. Thanks again for "listening" to all my whining! (Now we know where Ryleigh gets it!!!)