‘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

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Home, But Not Really....

Look how they've grown!
Nastia and I arrived home late Friday night, but we're still adjusting to the time change and lack of sleep. Everytime I arrive back from Russia I don't really feel 'home' for months. A country like Russia will do that to you. I spend the first several days feeling confused and somewhat homesick for where I've just come from -- like I'm straddling two worlds and can't decide which one is home. There are so many people there I love.

There is much to tell you about this trip, but I think it will come out in dribs and drabs. I came home with the need to hit the ground running at work - no time to transition. And so I don't have the time to reflect on the trip that I'd like. I did get to visit the children at the orphanage, and it was WONDERFUL. Sadly I can't post all the photos or details here because it could hurt some people I love over there. But at least you know they received a dose of love, and boy did I make use of the time I had with them!

I was also able to meet with a former caretaker who not only filled me in on the details of how things are in the orphanage now ( terrible) but also helped me to choose five more girls that just aged out that I could match with sponsors here. The most amazing part was that I had five particular girls in mind, but I did not mention them. I wanted to see who she recommended. It was serendipitously THE SAME FIVE GIRLS I HAD THOUGHT OF!

These girls have all recently aged out ( as in the past month.) All five of them are hard-working, trustworthy girls who will be good stewards of any money sent to them. This caretaker, whom I'm not naming to protect her, cried when she realized that seven girls had already been receiving monthly stipends from the States. She thought it was only one. She cried and said ' Keri, that is the difference between starvation and living for them...' and then she continued to cry. I did not know the money made that much of a difference. I knew it was helping, but she went on to tell me that these girls were able to stay in school solely because of these extra funds. Without it, they often have to choose between eating and bus fare to school.

I have found two sponsors already, but if you are reading this and feel prompted to help and can commit to at least one year of sending $50 per month, please contact me. I will send you info on the girls, and how to send them the funds. 

More later. I just hit another wall of exhaustion...lol...time for sleep!


  1. We can't currently sponsor someone who has aged out, but this fall we would love to start sponsoring.

  2. Welcome back. I'm *so glad* you were able to visit the orphanage! I am really looking forward to the dribs and drabs that will trickle out in days to come.

    All "my" girls that I volunteered with and sponsored have aged out. I have no idea where they are. Oh, my little sparrows! May God watch over each and every one of you.

  3. Anonymous8:51 PM

    Welcome home Keri! Remember to put me on the list of people who want to sponser one of the aged out girls. Just wanted to let you know that I had some personal rough times while you were away and when I thought of all that you were doing, going across the world to help Anya and these girls, it put my little troubles in perspective! Love and hugs... Debby_in_MA

  4. AdoptionRocks3:33 AM

    longtime reader, first time commenter. I should have written this long ago, but better late than never I guess: what you do is simply amazing. I have read your blog for about 4 years now. I honestly dont know how you do it. If you ever feel like you're not making a difference, go back and read your own blog. i'm betting some of these kids might not have made it this far if not for your love of them. I come to your blog for the reminder of what love truly is. Its not wirds or feelings, its doing and acting. Wish there were more people like you in the world. P.S. I adopted two from Ukraine years ago. I've never gone back, but you make me think about it.

  5. Please feel free to delete this one.

    Is that Galya looking so closed and skeptical in the Adidas shirt? Oh, my heart. Is that Rosa holding her? Did you see Zhenya?

    onlyk8 at yahoo.com

  6. Anonymous12:50 PM

    I'll share a sponsor with someone else.

    1. Ina, please email me- terrei at embarqmail dot com

  7. Ina, I was just going to post- I'd like to share the responsibility with someone else. Would you like to email me to work out the details? terrei @ embarqmail dot com


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