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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

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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Monday Mottoes – #209

Today our eldest son turns 21. For all intents and purposes, he should be 13, not because of any immaturity on his part, but because we adopted him when he was almost 8 and I would have loved to have been his mother for all 21 years. We’ve made up for lost time with adventures…

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Russian Diplomatic Retaliation

In tit-for-tat sanctions, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a staff reduction of the US diplomatic mission in Russia. While the 755 dismissed employees will be sure to cause inconvenience, it is most likely that the majority of those fired may come from the ranks of Russian citizens. Yes, Russians working in the American Embassy property…

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High School Homeschool Graduation

The end of an era. Pasha, 20, and Mashenka, 19, were graduating from high school. Nine years and eight years prior, both had arrived from Russia, woefully behind in their studies. Attending Russian internats, the orphanage boarding schools, most adults acknowledged that a quality education was not a top priority for kids who would most…

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Teen Summer Job Interviews

Our kids are finishing up their school year a bit late. That’s what happens when you travel the world and also when you don’t pay attention to your calendar. Personally, I like to see an end date and then work backwards from there, but hey, not everyone listens to me. Consequently, it’s mid-July and they…

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Semi-Adult Children Who Desperately Need Guidance

Two young men in their twenties have recently hit international news headlines and it’s not for helping little old ladies across the street. Though vastly different, their stories are similar in their tragic nature. Two men on the cusp of adulthood, their futures cut short through the poor choices executed. Now, as a parent of…