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Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
Hi Everyone...

Just wanted to post a quick note that we made it home safe & sound on Tues. Nov 10th. Ryan was amazing for the entire trip. He didn't cry that much and the only difficult time came about 3 hrs. before we landed in Boston. He really wanted to play and move around and I just didn't have the energy. At that point, I had been up for about 37 hrs. without sleep. If I had had duct tape with me, I would've considered using it to keep him still while I tried grab a few desperately needed winks. He did finally fall asleep for the last hour of the flight. Put him the perfect spirits to meet Daddy & Jack, and Grammy at the airport.

Ryan was in bed by 6pm Tuesday night in his new crib. We gave him the grand tour...and tried to feed him his dinner in a high chair...that didn't go over well. He only woke up for a bottle once at 11:45pm and then went back to sleep until 4:30am. We started out day there, Pete, I, and Ryan... Jack managed to stay sleeping until 7am...lucky him.

We're having a challenging time getting Ryan to eat much. I guess Kazakh baby food has a lot to live up to...US baby food is just not cutting the mustard. We're trying to give him some table food (in small chunks of course) as well, but despite having his 4 teeth, he's not chewing it. I have been puked on about 5 times because he just gags. Wish he would just like applesauce and stick with it... Now, I know why he's so teeny...he's got a stubborn streak in him when he doesn't want to eat, there's no changing his mind. Seems now, Pete is the only one in our house lacking a stubborn streak...

I'll post some pictures later...in another post.

Love from and thank you for...Chasing the Ivancics in our great adventures!
Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
We're leaving for the airport in 5 hrs. from now (midnight local time on 11/10). The flight leaves here at 2:30am and arrives in Frankfurt at 6:30am local time and then we hang out in Frankfurt for forever and a day. The flight for Boston leaves Frankfurt at 12:15pm local time and we land in Boston at 2:40pm on 11/10 (Tuesday).

I'm feeling a little overwhelmed...just me and Ryan for 25-26 hrs. Fortunately, E&R (and Sara too) will be with me through Frankfurt and we'll have some hang time there together. We'll part ways after 4 hrs. in Frankfurt and then Ryan and I will hang out for another 1.5 hrs. before boarding our flight to Boston.

Thanks for all of your support over the last few months...I can't wait to see you all and have you meet Ryan.

We'll be seeing you in all the familiar places very soon...(well, familiar to me anyway) :)



Here are some great PICTURES of us of days gone by.


Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
Sorry I haven’t posted in a few days…not much opportunity for pictures here, so I figure you probably would be less interested in me blathering on. I have a few days of pictures now.

Almaty is a beautiful city. It’s much different than Astana. The streets are tree-lined with large old trees. All the trees in Astana were planned within the last 5 years. There are also beautiful mountains around here, whereas Astana is truly on the Steppe and very flat for hundreds of miles. Almaty has a look that is reminiscent of New England.

We visited a Russian Orthodox Cathedral yesterday….it was beautiful and we even managed to see a wedding. The wedding was over and done within less than 20 min. This was the second time we have visited a place of worship..and at both places, we witnessed a wedding. We also visited a nearby restaurant that served lagman noodles, which is like homemade pasta…very popular here, in Astana too.

The restaurant was round, in the shape of a yurt. Yurts are very portable housing. The ancestors of Kazakhstan (or Central Asia for that matter) were very nomadic…and they lived in yurts.

Here’s a link http://www.mongolian-yurt.com/index.html

On Friday, we went to a medical appt. required by the embassy, Ryan checked ok. He has no diseases that prevent him from travel and he has also been cleared to not have any criminal tendencies. These are the 2 main reasons for the medical exam. I’ve included a few pictures of Nikolai holding him. Nikolai is our driver here in Almaty.

We took the kids shopping at a mall today…it was pretty nice and just the right speed. It was kind of neat, it had an ice skating rink in the middle of it. You could watch people skate from all 3 levels of the mall.

Ryan’s big accomplishment of today is that he can hold his own bottle….when he feels like it of course…if your Mother would still hold your bottle, wouldn’t you take advantage? :)

We are planning to go to the Embassy on Monday and then hopefully, we’ll be on our way back to the US on Tuesday…we are currently booked for Thursday…hoping I can move it up…also hoping I can convince someone nice to bump me to first class from Frankfurt to Boston. Current plan is to sleep on first flight, then once we are in Frankfurt start consuming tons of Red Bull. The 2nd flight, move to 1st class and take advantage of a glass or two of free wine. Hopefully Ryan doesn’t need Red Bull or the wine, as I don’t think it’s advisable to give him these things.

Here are some PICTURES of us today.


Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
…that’s right possibly only 5 nights left….but not more than 7. We left today from Astana…and we’re now in Almaty. What a crazy day!! I woke up and packed….pretty low-key packing for me…waited around to go to the airport (seemed like forever)…and then when we got to the airport, it was a gigantic rush…we almost missed our flight. Ryan screamed for the first 40 minutes. Our mini-test-run for the long trip home is not encouraging…I’m now considering just living here in Almaty and you can all come and visit us.

It seems too surreal to be in a hotel room. The bed is softer than the pavement-firm bed I’ve been sleeping on for the last few weeks. What’s more, there is an actually fitted sheet on the bed…and get this, the sheets fit the bed. Also, I am looking forward to taking a shower tomorrow morning and not having to hold the shower head in my hand the whole time. I might even be able to brush my teeth without bottled/boiled water tomorrow…Pinch me.

I’m sorry, I don’t have any pics for you today…but I’ll try and wrangle something up for tomorrow.
Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
Ryan has discovered biting….nice!!! He has suddenly started exploring more things with his mouth…which is great…he was a delayed this. The whole time we were playing in the playroom, I always wondered why he wouldn’t put anything in his mouth…but he always seemed to have the instinct, because as he looked at things intently, he would open his mouth. He bit me twice today… he looks/acts like he is going to give me a kiss, but then…CHOMP! Ummmm…nyet, nyet.

Tonight was also my first difficult bedtime with him…I think he is totally use to (and no longer enamored with) falling asleep in my arms..and it’s lost its magic spell. I think the poor guy is both teething and having some serious gas pains. He wouldn’t go to sleep until 9:30.

It’s truly amazing to see how Ryan has changed since Sept. 18. (our first visit with him). This week alone, it seems like he’s developed an entire month. He’s walking along furniture a ton…I’ll be surprised if he’s not walking before I arrive back in Boston. The playroom use to be so busy with other families visiting that he was kind of just in his shell….but this week, where he’s taken center stage with Sara…he’s starting to really ham it up.

The inch worm….Ryan has a wicked power-slouch going on while eating. He slouchs way down; I have no idea how he can swallow when he gets like this…

I’m going to miss hanging out at the Radisson…Ryan will be disappointed to know that we don’t have an espresso or cappuccino machine in Haverhill. It may also distress him when he finds out we have no indoor pool like at the baby home…I think somehow we’ll make it up to him.

Here are some PICTURES of us today.


Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
As you would imagine, we are either in eat or sleep mode…we are constantly in a quest for one of those things or the other. It also seems like we are doing dishes non-stop…oh yeah, we are…there’s like 6 plates with 5 people and no dishwasher…we are constantly washing.

It was a rough night last night…Ryan decided he needed to keep Sara on her toes. He started to howl at 1:30am and didn’t stop until after 3. Never really got to the bottom of what was bothering him. I changed him first…didn’t fix it, I tried feeding him several times…he didn’t want it, I can feel teeth coming in…decided he’s probably teething….gave him a little Motrin and he finished out the night fine. I spent the first 2 hrs. trying to just get him to sleep and trying to avoid standing up the whole time…but he won out…the 3rd hour, I spent awake wondering how we was handling the Motrin…. This dosage was his first.

We had to rush out in the rain to go back to the baby home to bid farewell to Dr. Alma, the Director. She wasn’t around on Saturday, when we said good-bye to everyone else. This was our big outing for the day, it took 2 hrs. of diligence to escape the apartment, and then we were only gone 1 hr. hardly seems worth it.

Got some great photos and videos for you today. Also, there are a few pics of Jack from Halloween back in Haverhill…miss him so much…I was happy to get these…

Here are some PICTURES of us today.



Category: Baby
Posted by: jenn
Well Ryan and I slept…E&R and Sara, not so much. I feel bad they’re getting a little frustrated with trying to figure out how to console her. She has a bad case of eczema and they’re trying to avoid any dairy and she is whiling the night-time scratching herself; the poor girl. Anyway, it’s not kept me or Ryan awake and Elizabeth and Roscoe are exhausted.

We got up the first time at 4:30 this morning. I managed to convince Ryan to drink a few ounces of milk for the sake of 2 more hours….Yes 6:30…we made it!!! He wanted a nap by 9:00…only slept for an hour…lunch by 11:30 and then we made it out of the apartment…. (My Goal for today :) ) We headed to the Radisson…we needed (well, I needed) a few cappuccinos….E&R and Sara got up with us on the Riverwalk…joined us for a bit at the Radisson. They had a nice brunch going on with some musicians playing piano and saxophone…I love this hotel and will be sad to not hang there anymore when life gets back to normal.

Ryan actually fell asleep at the Radisson…why not…he sleeps everywhere!!! (this was nap #2). We got back from the Radisson…and after an hour of playing, he couldn’t hack it anymore…and he slept from 4:30-6:30. Yeah…I should know better…he didn’t go to bed until 9:30…just hoping this carries us to later than 4:30am tomorrow morning.

This was our last Sunday in Astana…feels nice to say that. I have enjoyed both of our trips to this city….but I am longing for my home…my family, my bed, ok….my clothes dryer.

Here are some PICTURES of us today.