Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Yesterday morning we received our first Klaudia smiles! Since then, we have had 100 more smiles and all kinds of giggles and doubled-over laughs!! She is a totally different girl when she smiles. Her face just lights up...amazing!

The first smiles came because of sprinklers (thus the Blog title). We were walking around the grounds of Wawel Castle, and there were sprinklers watering the lawn. She seemed interested so I pointed and said "sprinkler"! She cracked a huge smile! I couldn't believe it (because we only got a half smile in April, and hadn't seen one since), so I called Ryan over. Sure enough, every time we said "sprinkler," she smiled and sometimes laughed! I wonder if there is a word in Polish that is similar that would have made her laugh? Or, maybe she was just ready?!

We also went to a real sit down restaurant for lunch yesterday. She did so well and tried a bit of our food. She was a typical toddler - grabbing for anything within sight on the table and trying to throw things on the ground. We were able to complete the meal without getting too many dirty looks though...so, a success indeed!

We have done a bit of sightseeing around town. Krakow is incredible. It is beatiful, tragic, rich, artistic, deeply religious, and cosmopolitan. The events of Schindler's List took place here (and much of the movie). Auschwitz is not far, and we are planning a visit later this week. It is just unfathomable to imagine all of the events that occurred here during the occupation. We saw a Jewish cemetary yesterday that the Jews covered in trash to convince the Nazis that it was a dump, and not a coveted place. We also saw a synagogue that survived the occupation, only because the Nazis coverted it to a stable. Seriously...did this really happen? Right down the street? It is all difficult to believe. But the city seems to take pride in their perseverence and finds strength in the history.

We have the visit with the social worker today - wish us good thoughts that it is routine! Then...countdown to final court next Tuesday! After final court, we are headed to Warsaw. We were originally headed back to Krakow, but have changed our plans and will be in Warsaw beginning on the end of August 11.

Here are recent smiles and sleepy time...


kelly said...

So precious!! What a beautiful smile. Good luck today, I'm sure all will go weel with your visit. Have a great week!!

James and Melanie said...

WOw! It sounds like your little girl is really coming around! What is with these kiddos not taking sippy cups? Thank you for the straw idea. We're going to try it out as soon as we can get one. Also, tell Ryan not to feel so bad. BJ prefers mama over dada too! I really feel it's the age plus they are used to women caregivers! She'll come around. James goes on a "father and son" walk every so often so that BJ can bond without me in the way. It seems to be working! Can't wait to see you!

Adoptive Parents of Three said...

Sprinkler makes my daughter smile, too! She LOVES playing in it.

As for the Holocaust events: Yes, it's incredible to be there and believe it all happened. For me it's very real because my parents best friends are survivors from Schindler's List, and most of my family perished in Auschwitz.

I don't know if I'm dreading or looking forward to the day when I'll have to explain the family tree to my Polish kids.

CarrieJ said...

The pictures made me tear a bit. She looks happy, Jen. I'm so thrilled!

C Speh said...

So cute - love the smiles.

Lee and Martha said...

The are smiles on everyone's faces!! Sound as though everything is really working out well and that is fantastic!!

sarah said...

What a gorgeous smile! You all just look so very happy together. :)

Sending you our good thoughts for a successful and helpful SW visit!

Jeff and Debbie said...

Love picture #2 of the two of you. Klaudia sounds very comfortable with you now and is relaxed enough to enjoy her new mommy and daddy. Wishes for many, many more smiles!

Poland has come a long way in such a short time. And yet so remembrandt(?) of the past. I know what you meant with your comment but it's probably comments like that that make them want to keep the memories alive, lest anyone forgets.

How long will you be in Warsaw? James & Melanie are here too and I need to contact them before they leave. Maybe we could all get together.......?