We should be all set to take whatever pictures we'd like for the rest of the week so check back tomorrow for pictures of him! I promise we will post some :)
Joseph is very, very sweet....that I can tell you! He is very tiny...smaller than I expected him to be and he seems smaller than the pictures we have of him from 6 months ago. He's three months away from turning 3 years old and I'm guessing he's probably about an 18 month size in clothing. He had layers on so it was hard to tell, but his face was much thinner than what we've seen in pictures. We tried feeding him a banana, but he wanted nothing to do with it. Not a banana fan! He also has the craziest cowlick in the front of his hair!
We were amazed at how focused and interested he was in the toys we tried using with him. We were kind of expecting him to have a very small attention span and maybe not be interested in toys, but he giggled and engaged with things and loved it when Dan mimicked the banging of the toys in the same way he was doing. It was very sweet. He didn't seem to want to be held for the first half of the visit, which didn't surprise us, but I especially liked the second half when he settled down and snuggled up next to me a bit as he was getting more tired and more used to us being there.
With all the waiting and preparing to get here, I think Dan and I were just totally exhausted by the end of our visit...its just been a lot to take in and process. We're looking forward to getting an early night's rest tonight and get back to seeing him tomorrow morning!
Here's a little bit of thoughts from Dan...
I'm so grateful for my wife and the opportunity have her with me when we finally met Joseph. I was happy to see how he reacted to and played with us, given how we're complete strangers to him; while for us, this moment has been almost a year in the preparation. I can see him as part of the family; how his sister will take to him, how his older brothers will deal with another mischievous little brother :). I'm looking forward to the rest of this week, as challenging as it's been. I'm grateful for the experience that God has set before us and I'm know His Grace abounds when we say yes, even when we are not sure what that yes fully entails.
|Joseph's Orphanage. Soviet era building that was most likely originally some kind of hospital or medical facility re-purposed as an orphanage.|
|another outside shot of Joseph's orphanage|
|Picture from our hotel window of Joseph's town|
|Another picture from our hotel room|