Friday, February 29, 2008


Well it's a done deal. Roman Christopher and Jadon Paul Goeppner are in our care and officially our children. Penny has written about the experience on our adoption blog HERE. We are so blessed to have the support of all of our friends, family and of course our blogging community. Please keep praying for us as it is become quite difficult to entertain and enjoy 2 kiddos in a cramped hotel room.


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Russian elections

Today we were walking around town and some people were handing out election information. They gave us some of these card/calendars with Dimitri Medvedev and Vlad Putin on them. Medvedev is pretty much the only guy on the ticket (there are 2 other irrelevant guys in contention). If you want I will bring you one back, just leave a comment.


Sunday, February 24, 2008

Some thoughts on Siberia

Driving is very crazy here. I really couldn’t imagine getting behind the wheel.

There is some sort of fixation with beets. I think that beets may be the national vegetable. Dwight Shrute would be proud.

There are factories everywhere. You drive into the countryside and you see smoke stacks skyline the horizon.

The roads are not well kept, potholes are hard to avoid.

Never hand a store clerk money. Place it in the dish that sits on the store counter.

Always take your jacket off and take it to the “Cloak Room”. If you don’t every one in the restaurant will stare you down.

Potato chips aren’t a popular item here. Pringles are the only chip we have found.

There are 2-inch thresh-holds in between rooms here. We haven’t figured that one out yet.

Everyone listens to dance (club) music. The bass pounds from the cars and even in the local Subway restaurant.

Everything requires a stamp-seal. I don’t know where this comes from, but they stamp everything! We learned this from the paperwork for the adoptions.


Friday, February 22, 2008

Russia Trip 2: Birthday boy!

We celebrated our oldest son's birthday today! He actually turns 4 tomorrow but it's national holiday here (Man's Day) and everything is closed till Tuesday. I think we need a Man's Day in America! It was so amazing to watch the orphanage directors put together a special day for our son. We brought all kinds of treats in for his play group (about 15 or so kiddos) and they all sang happy birthday in the unique Russian way. He felt so special. The next few days will be long for us as we will not be able to see our sons (even though they are legally ours!). Please pray.


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Russia Trip 2: The food sucks!

Today it hit me. The food here in Siberia really is not very good. A typical breakfast consists of a typical Amrican dinner, no lie. We had the best meal since we arrived today (lunch) and it was a cheesy pasta from an italian joint, you can't mess that up. Yesterday we went to Subway and they do mess that up. The meat is basically Spam. It sucks. Sorry to complain, it is just a reality. On a different and more important note, our sons are doing amazing! We saw them earlier today and will see them tomorrow. We will celebrate our oldests 4th birthday! Please keep praying for us! we have 3 more weeks left here in the former USSR.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Russia Trip 2: Coldness

It was a BIG day for us in Siberia. We got the official "OK" from the Russian court and we became the rightful parents to 2 little boys!!!!! Freakin' amazing. Penny has posted more HERE for those interested. As for the cultural experience here in the great frozen tundra, it's very different. It's cold in every way known to man. The weather is cold, the people are cold and the water is cold. I could go on but you get my point. Anyway, we have to wait 10 days before the boys are in our care for good (it's part of the Russian process). Circle next Friday, February 29th on your calendar and pray. Pray that would be the day we get our sons. Check back for more posts.


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Russia Trip 2: In Siberia

We landed in Siberia this morning at 6 AM and were greeted at the airport by our contact Yelana and driver Serge. It was great to be reunited with them. Our drive from the airport to our hotel was very interesting. Lots of snow drifts, blowing to the point of zero visibility. Add to that the fearless driving of Serge and it made for quite the ride. We got to the hotel and arranged our room the way we want it to be for the next several weeks then settled down in front of the boob-tube to catch some Russian TV. That put us to sleep (from 10 AM till 6 PM). Yes, it was that boring. We then went to eat down the street at Mick's Patio, it's an American style diner without the American food. Siberians like to eat slaws of all sorts (beets, cabbage, etc.) so we passed on that and ate some bread and cheese; I had some killer stroganoff, kinda tasted like moms! Anyway, we are back in the room (it's almost 9 PM Sunday) and we are back to watching some Russian TV, this time a scary reality show is on. Much easier to follow than a drama. Tomorrow is a BIG day as we get to go to the orphanage to see our sons for the first time in almost 4 months! I'll check in tomorrow.


Saturday, February 16, 2008

Russia Trip 2: Off to Siberia

We leave for Siberia today at 9PM (9AM EST). It's a 5 hour flight and 4 time zones away from Moscow.
Below is the weather in our temporary Siberian home. Hopefully we can stay in touch...


Friday, February 15, 2008

Russia Trip 2: Red Square

Today Penny and I took a tour of Red Square in downtown Moscow. Very cool. Penny writes about it here. It was so weird walking down the middle of a place that was displayed the army of our feared former enemy, the Soviet Union. We saw Lenin's tomb (it was closed today), walked in St. Basil's Cathedral (pictured), and saw an official Apple Computer "re-seller". We also saw at the former KGB Building, interesting enough, there is a Lambo, Ferrari and Bentley dealership just across from it (pictured). Check back soon!


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Our ride through Moscow

Today we had to take a ride through the city to get to our medical exam. Here is video footage of our wild ride!

Watch here


Skype us!

Screen name:
When: Friday
We would love to here from you all!
This is a picture from a Skype video chat with my parents and of course our dog, Grommit.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Russia Trip 2: from Mockba (Moscow)

We are sitting in the hotel lobby waiting for a room to come available. I feel like a time traveler or something. As I write this it is 1 o'clock in the afternoon Wednesday while our American friends and family are snoozing away. A few quick observations: Moscow is a city on crack. It never ends and the traffic makes Atlanta traffic look sissy. It's cold and there is a lot of dirty snow on the ground. Penny posted her initial thoughts here on our adoption blog, you should check it out.


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Russia Trip 2: From MIA

To add to this video we have good news! We just changed seats for our flight from NYC to Moscow, we will be sitting at the emergency exit! This means that we will have EXTRA, EXTRA room for our 9 hour flight. Yeah!!!!!!!!


Monday, February 11, 2008

Nice move Starbucks!

As I sip on my McDonalds vanilla iced coffee it's being reported that Starbucks will offer free wi-fi to customers at everyones favorite coffee shop! Smart move. You can read about it here. Will you be more inclined to go to St. Arbucks now?


Sunday, February 10, 2008

Church picnic

As a church we take advantage of our beach-side location and have several church picnics each year. Here I am on the softball field where I made my post knee surgery debut. I also played some flag football and ate a bunch of chilli and a hot dog. Good times, I love my church! (Yes, this is the only hat that I wear)


Saturday, February 09, 2008

60 hours and counting!

We can hardly contain ourselves! We leave for Russia in about 60 hours. 60 hours from our lives changing forever. 60 hours from a 30 day excursion that will be imprinted in our hearts and minds forever. This will be the longest I have been away from home aside from college. Have you ever been on a month long trip before? As far as Siberia?


Friday, February 08, 2008

Skype me!

After Tuesday the only way you will be able to communicate with Penny and I will be via Skype. If you are unfamiliar with Skype you should familiarize yourself with this great application and then get an account, it’s free! Our Skype name is Geppapa. Plug us in and if you see that we are online give us a ring!! Just remember that will be 9 hours ahead in Moscow and 12 hours ahead in Siberia. Talk soon!


Thursday, February 07, 2008

Big day in sports

Yesterday was a big day in South Florida sports. Shaq was traded from Miami to Phoenix and the University of Miami nabbed the number recruiting class in the country. I'm bitter-sweet about the Shaq trade. I know it was best for the team, but I hate to see Mr. Personality go some where else. The big recruiting day for the U was not a surprise as 8 Northwestern Bulls (the #1 high school team in America)signed with the U. Look for good things to come out of Coral Gables very soon! How did your college team do yesterday in recruiting?

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Wednesday, February 06, 2008

National Signing Day

Today is an important day for the University of Miami. As of 10 AM the U is positioning themselves to have a top 5 recruiting class! Not too shabby! On another note, for those into college football here is a sad, pathetic yet hilarious recruiting prank pulled on a high school football star. I can imagine this kid is hiding from his coaches and teamates. Read here, here, and here


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Article: "Why I Am an Abortion Doctor"

Take the time to read this quite disturbing article: 'I can take a woman, in the biggest trouble she has ever experienced in her life, and by performing a five-minute operation, in comfort and dignity, I can give her back her life'

read more | digg story


Peace sign Jesus

Last week I was at a ministry meeting at a local church here in South Florida. This picture creeped me out so much. Notice how big his head is, the blue eyes, brownish blonde-streaked hair and of coarse the peace sign. Is this the creepiest picture of Jesus you have ever seen?


Monday, February 04, 2008

Why I wanted the Patriots to lose.

I have an agenda for my rants against the Patriots. I am a tried and tested Miami Dolphins fan. Always have been, always will be. The Patriots are the Darth Vader to Dolfans. The evil empire. Let the truth be known the real reason I wanted the Patriots to lose: 1972 Miami Dolphins. I think I would get sick if New England became a part of this elite band of brothers. Not this year! Thanks NY Giants! Now that the '72 Dolphins still sit alone as the only professional sports team in American history to go undefeated I can celebrate.


8 days

I can't believe our departure for Siberia to go and get our boys is only 8 days away! Today we will clean the house thoroughly and get some packing things in order. We will be away from our house, family and church family for 30 days! That’s the longest trip I have ever been on. It's kind of like a short-term mission trip. Our mission: Rescue 2 young lads from the frozen tundra of Siberia!!

*No purpose for the random picture of me and Grommit.


Sunday, February 03, 2008

Any predictions?

Any Super Bowl predictions? I think Bill Belichick has been reading Life & Times and will be very motivated tonight. Expect a beat down in Arizona, much to my disappointment.
What do you predict?


Saturday, February 02, 2008

At the barbershop

Today was our monthly Adopt-a-Block day in inner-city West Palm Beach. Each time we make our way around the block picking up trash I stop by my old friend Courtney's barbershop. I have known Courtney since he was 15 and it has been so amazing reconnecting with him. It's so cool watching him become a fixture in his neighborhood as a local favorite barber. Have you bumped into anyone you have known for a long time?


Friday, February 01, 2008

I want the Patriots to lose: Reason 5

Quick thoughts on this atrocious logo:

Norm Peterson from "Cheers"
A villain from a super-hero comic book

You fill in the blank....