web analytics

Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Russian Adoption

permit1

Learning to Drive… in Other Languages

Our kids continue to study Russian Lite throughout the year. I take them through the paces, the key to our limited success being that we need dialogs which will engage them. In college, you can use the normal, “What are you studying?” and “Do you live in the dorm?”, but for now, we need more…

prob1

When Adoption Doesn’t Work

Some adoptions don’t work. Just like some marriages don’t work. And often, you get a package, two-for-one deal. My inbox is full of those who have no one who believes them. The toddler/ teen/ young adult is a terror on wheels, and often one spouse never sees it. The smirks, the backtalk, the violence… always…

art1

Our Second Son Steps Out in Art

You all know about Petya, 17.5, recent high school grad headed for college in the fall, great internship-part time job, with another part-time job on the golf course which is his second-favorite sport after tennis. He’s got stuff going on right and left. His younger brother, not so much. Pasha is the same age, from…

summerjob1

Our Girl’s Good News

We’ve been chatting with the kids about summer jobs. Granted, half the summer is over, but still, they can dream. Their ages are 17.5, 17.5, 16, and 13.5, two boys, two girls, all who arrived from Russia at older ages. The first boy is headed to college in the fall, the second boy is entering…

passport1

Passport Photos: Me and My Fat Head

It’s been five years and the girls need new Russian passports. Been there, done that with the boys. Happily, with the 10-year variety, now they’ll all be in their 20s when they need to renew again. Benedetto was going to be the parental co-signer, so we listed his name on the electronic form submitted in…

buddies1

Another Funny Summer Flick

Do you want a movie full of adventure, a bit of Russian language, and dogs? Look no farther. This is a film with no swearing and plenty of good messages. The bad guys get into trouble, and the good guys/dogs come out on top. On Netflix, our family watched yet another in the series of…

russia1

Our Girls… Five Years Later

It was around this time, five years ago, that Benedetto and I found ourselves in a remote region of southern Russia, adopting two sisters. The weather was hotter than hot in a land with seemingly no air conditioning. Before my husband arrived, I remember sitting in a tiny square near the orphanage, a quilt placed…

graduation1

Commencement-!

A homeschool graduation can be any number of things, even as homeschoolers themselves mirror every color of the rainbow. Whether unschoolers, or classicists, co-op kids, or those tied to workbooks and DVDs, you’ll find them somewhere on the spectrum and their commencement ceremonies reflect that. Ours was an affair with multiplied friends of the young…

paretns1

You Said WHAT to the Kids-?!

Some days, I think my husband is five years old. Many days. And he thinks I’m two, so I guess we’re even. The problem? Benedetto believes everything the kids say to him. Him: “The children said that you said that Josh’s parents said that his teacher said that he needs to have his life’s career…

sixteen1

On the Eve of 16

I tried to research what it’s like to be a girl turning 16 in America today. It’s possible to obtain statistics on drug and alcohol use, as well as sexual activity patterns among high-schoolers. I can access forums where parents ask others’ opinions about their 16-year-old dating a 24-year-old and all I can imagine is…

The Daily Dilbert