‘What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men …… That is what love looks like.’ - St. Augustine

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

We Have Digs!

Lease signed, first month's rent paid -- we finally have a safe convenient home in Kemerovo. God has a great sense of humor, because, let me tell you, this apartment has PERSONALITY.

Imagine the Jetsons moving to Siberia and you get an idea. Its a fourth floor walk-up apartment right by the river. It's very "high-end" for Kemerovo, and the owner was a 20-something wanna-be model with 8 inch stiletto heels, braces on her teeth, hair slicked back and nails a mile long. She was so proud of the apartment, and I had all I could to keep from laughing the whole time. It is painted neon yellow...and I DO mean neon. It has a tiny balcony, weird "tomorrowland" looking features right out of a 50s era movie about the future.

Things I like about it:

1. We can get cheap internet. 500 rubles a month.
2. It has a washing machine.
3. It is 4 floors up so I will get lots of exercise.
4. It is 4 floors up, so Nastia will get lots of exercise.
5. It is in a very safe, convenient area that I am familiar with.
6. It has a tub!
7. It has a pull-out couch so Anya can have her own space ( which she requested)
8. Heat included.
9. View of the river if you crane your neck to the left:)
10. Nastia loves it, bc it has a tv AND a swing and playground in the courtyard.

Although the decor and color may give me a headache, it also makes me laugh. It has giant plywood geometric shapes painted neon blue stuck to the walls, and a spiral thingy on the kitchen bar that leads up to the ceiling which holds glasses. The couch looks like something out of a cartoon -- and it is upholstered in wall to wall carpeting!

Even have a shag white rug to seal the deal. So funny....

PS: If you want to write us, send me an email and I'll give you our mailing address. We are right on Vesennaya street, for those of you who know Kemerovo!


  1. So so glad to hear you have a place! Just shoveling out from under Hurricane Igor over here.

  2. Anonymous8:01 PM

    Great news! Congrats!

  3. Anonymous8:13 PM

    Hi Keri, it is Janet :) I haven't posted on your blog yet, not sure if you'd recognize my profile name.

    YAY! I'm glad you found a safe, comfortable neon apartment! Is there anything we can send to help you out? I have so many questions, but don't want to smother you with them.. one important one is if you have enough money, and can you access the PayPal money in Kemerovo?

  4. Now, THAT is Russia for you..... I'd get all folkloric in my thinking, and SLAM - everything would be "modern" from the Russian point of view. As in - horrific from mine.

    The thing is, after a number of trips, I've decided that it boils down to very different cultural tastes. I expect they find some of our stuff ugly, too.

    I used to think our hotel in Ivanovo was furnished with really outdated oddities from who knows where.....UNTIL, I happened into a furniture store in Moscow and realized to my amazement that those easy chairs and couches were - well, like NEW ones.

  5. wow! what an....interesting place! I am so glad you feel safe and settled in an area that feels familiar! wooo hooo!

  6. I'm sure a weight from your shoulders has been lifted, having found a place to live.

    May you be showered with many more blessings. Soon.

  7. So glad you have found someplace safe & comfy... well, comfy if you're wearing sunglasses to deal with the neon glare! Ha ha ha....

    Thank you for sharing so much about your trip, Keri. I have to tell you, that Daniel, scary as FASD is, he is just a gigantic cutie-pie! Funny how Nastia is feeling it too. It's the eyes -- what a little love he is!!!

    As difficult as this trip is, I deeply admire your courage for undertaking it for your girls, and for the kids at the Detsky Dom. It brought tears to my eyes to read about the gifts you brought, and how much it meant to each child. That's just awesome, in the true sense of the word. My whole family is praying for you all -- I hope you can feel all of the love & support coming to you so far from home!

  8. Ahh! Thanks everyone for your comments! They make me so happy! Like finding a shiny penny on the ground when you're little:) I so feel the effects of so many prayers..THANK you every last one of you. Janet, in a way I can access the paypal $$. I purposely did nOT put the Anya acct in my name, but my dear friend Carley is in charge of it. If the money gets transferred to the Anya acct as before, then Chris or someone can request a check from my friend Carley, have it deposited in my personal acct and then I can acceess it from my debit card. not too complicated!

  9. none of my comments on the other entries are appearing. so i hope this goes through. i loved your last entry, and this one makes me happy. you're so fun. we'll repaint the house here neon yellow for you so it'll feel right when you get home.


  10. Anonymous6:48 AM

    Is there anything else you'd like us to send you? Perhaps a care package from home? A bag of Starbucks coffee maybe?

  11. Glad you have a place!!! Maybe some pictures of the new digs!!!!

  12. yeahhhhhhhhhhh - there's no place like home and home is where the heart is. and now you have both of your hearts with you. take care. i look forward to reading your posts almost everyday. maybe one day you will write a book about your journey.

    my prayers are with you


  13. I have been following your blog for a while now. My friend is adopting three children from Lithuania, they are off next week to collect them. I am from New Zealand. I came across your blog as I was reading about intercountry adoption. All the very best for your trip, you are a totally inspiring woman.

  14. Congratulations!! I cracked up when I read your "The Jetsons move to Siberia" line. It reminded me of the time I starred in a could have been reality show called "The Clampetts go on vacation in the Outer Banks." Except in that case the house was VERY nice...and we were the people who didn't fit in :)


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