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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

Russian Children and Security Checks

Sashenka was sure that nobody wanted to hire her. I had suggested a job that resulted in EXTREME excitement and interest on her part, something right up her alley. And now… no call. “Persistence, my dear, persistence,” I told her. “You guys fill out an online application and then sit in the corner and rock….

Prepping for Summer Positions

It’s that time of year, the kids getting ready for summer, if not year-round jobs. Yes, it’s April and if high school or college students wait until May or June, forget about it! Nothing will be left in terms of positions and you will be a jobless teen or twenty-something. Swoop in Mother Goose to…

Ethiopia Closes to Adoption

And then there were four. As Ethiopia closes its door to children being adopted by foreigners, more and more Americans are not adopting. The huge numbers of thousands of foreign adoptions in the early 2000s have now dropped to a trickle in 2018. Among the largest blocks are the following nations adopting to the US:…

Russian Christmas 2018

Russian Christmas, is celebrated each year on January 7th, and particularly the night before— Sochevnik— Christmas Eve. We are not Orthodox, so a lot of the fasting and other details are not foremost in our celebrations. Still, it’s a nod in the direction of Mother Russia. We gather around a tall, white pillar candle —…

The Russians are Coming… No, They’re Here

Don’t let the Bartologimignano family name fool you, I’m the Russian side of the family. Besides that, we have four adopted kids from Russia, adopted at older ages (pre-teens), so yes, most of them still have accents as puberty, or impending puberty, or an unwillingness to mix-and-mingle with wider society-at-large until a later age seems…

And Then There Were Four… Wisdom Tooth Diary

Our kids from Russia have been through it. They arrived as preteens with all sorts of dental issues. Our youngest, Sashenka, had 21 cavities. Since that time, around turning 18 years of age, each required the extraction of all four wisdom teeth. We’re down to the last one. Sashenka just turned 17 and has been…

Russia Meddling in Other Countries

Somewhere along the line, somebody was drinking the Koolaid. Folks were believing that Russia, the country with the largest land mass in the world, would be content to just live and let live. Anyone who has visited Russia, lived in Russia, had a Russian grandmother or read Russian literature knows otherwise. Let’s stick with the…

Reminiscences of the Russian Revolution

October 1917 is a date that will go down in history for much longer than the past 100 years. Only it wasn’t October. The October Revolution, or the Bolshevik Revolution, actually happened in November 1917 due to the Julian calendar used at that time in Russia. How might I have reminiscences of this event? Contrary…

Cannibalism in Krasnodarsky Krai

People, I can’t make up this stuff. I don’t want to invent stories like these because I understand that every country has its fair share of “crazies”. However. As an adoptive parent of older children from Russia, I have monitored with interest the idea that life for a Russian child is better in Russia. I…

Love and the Coffee Break

In our family, loving acts often revolve around coffee. Most every morning, Benedetto makes me coffee. Sometimes, we take a mini-date and go out for coffee because our evenings are so packed with events that it’s difficult to embark on a full-fledged date on a regular basis. Small acts of kindness add up. The other…